"UTJ, which is currently in the opposition, has made
agreements on issues which are vital for the entire chareidi
and religious sector, both for Shas and UTJ. I call on the
Finance Minister to respond to the legitimate demands of Shas
for its educational and religious needs, and I call on Shas
to withdraw from the coalition. Don't sit with Barak in order
to benefit from the amenities of being in the government. He
has trampled on Shabbos," said Rabbi Moshe Gafni at a
deliberation on the Law of Arrangements and the budget.
He said that since the founding of the State, no Prime
Minister has ever ordered Shabbos desecration like Barak.
"Yitzchok Rabin intervened when I turned to him regarding a
component which was supposed to be transferred on Shabbos,
and said that there wouldn't be Shabbos desecration. In a
Jewish State it can happen that a Prime Minster has to
intervene in such an issue. But that a Prime Minster will
interfere an hour-and-a-half before Shabbos and say that a
turbine should be transferred on Shabbos indicates that there
was some sort of trick here."
Rabbi Gafni mentioned Barak's campaign slogans: "Money for
health, and not for the settlers; Money for education, and
not for the chareidim," and his more recent: "No man on earth
can overpower me."
Gafni also said: "UTJ is now in the opposition after having
withdrawn from the coalition, where it held no positions. We
took no positions so that we would have no personal incentive
to remain, since we knew that a situation might arise in
which we would have to withdraw. We didn't assume positions
as ministers, deputy ministers or committee heads. We were
willing to forego everything, and when the Prime Minster did
what no other Prime Minister in the history of the state
dared to do, we withdrew."
He then quoted the remarks of the Education Minister that the
chareidi education in the State encompasses 13.1% of the
students, while the percentage of the budget it receives from
the Ministry is only 3.9%. Its share of the sums that are
granted to the local authorities for education is 0%. These
statistics indicate that every chareidi child receives only a
quarter of the support given a child in the secular
"Worst of all is that they say that Bnei Brak is the poorest
city in the country because its residents chose poverty. This
is a downright antisemitic lie, because a child from Bnei
Brak receives a quarter of the support given a Ramat Gan
child. All this money stems from the same State budget which
is supposed to be equal and up-to-date."