Mofaz: "Government Lacks Jewish Values"
by Eliezer Rauchberger
"As a traditional man I feel a significant lack in the
government of the values of the religious parties," said
Defense Minister Shaul Mofaz at a meeting of Knesset
correspondents when asked for his opinion on talks toward the
setup of a unity government.
He said unity is the right course since such a government has
the ability to pass decisions, therefore "the more we are
able to expand the base of the coalition the better."
When asked by the Yated Ne'eman correspondent whether
he preferred a government consisting of the Likud, Labor and
Shinui or the Likud, Labor and the chareidi parties, Mofaz
avoided a direct reply. "In my opinion there are more than
two options. I do not oppose a move like this or any other.
As I said the broader the coalition the better. Any broad
coalition arrangement with which it is possible to run the
country, to make decisions and to execute them is preferable.
I believe a good coalition will be found."
In response to a question as to how he would react if asked
to step down from his post as defense minister to allow the
setup of a unity government, Mofaz showed far more restraint
than other ministers who have lashed out at the idea of
having to relinquish their portfolio. "I am in favor of a
unity government," he said. "Sometimes things are given,
sometimes they are taken away. We are not at this point at
the moment. When we arrive at the issue of portfolios, each
of the ministers cannot place his post as a stumbling block
before a unity government. I trust the prime minister and the
negotiating team as well to arrange matters intelligently
toward the setup of a coalition and ministers who know how to
carry out the government's fundamental [program]."