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Israel - Jerusalem's New Secular Mayor Barkat Brings Haredim Into Coalition

Published on: December 8, 2008 08:30 AM
By: Haaretz
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Israel -  Jerusalem’s new secular mayor Nir Barkat has brought an ultra-Orthodox faction into his coalition, two weeks after forging one without any Haredi members and one week after taking office.

Barkat’s mayoral campaign was galvanized in part by the fight against what many secular Jerusalemites branded the creeping ‘haredization,’ or ultra-Orthodox takeover, of the capital.

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Today, he expressed satisfaction with the addition of United Torah Judaism party members to his coalition.
“This is another stage en route to a broad, all-encompassing coalition that will enable [us] to embark on a struggle for the future of Jerusalem in a united manner,” said Barkat.

The new mayor added that his coalition would focus on achieving budgets, fundraising and reforms. He said it would do this by “channeling great energy into joint ventures to save Jerusalem, and not on internal disputes.”

Two weeks ago, Barkat put together a coalition without the ultra-Orthodox factions. The coalition consisted of Meretz, the National Religious Party, Yerushalayim Beiteinu and Hitorerut Yerushalayim.



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Read Comments (10)  —  Post Yours »

1

 Dec 08, 2008 at 08:54 AM agmes nefesh Says:

I'm sure Ger is well represented in this coalition.

2

 Dec 08, 2008 at 09:54 AM Anonymous Says:

Reply to #1  
agmes nefesh Says:

I'm sure Ger is well represented in this coalition.

I should hope so, they got him the job.

3

 Dec 08, 2008 at 10:20 AM Anonymous Says:

Ger is in Israel, what Satmar used to be in Williamsburg.

4

 Dec 08, 2008 at 09:57 AM ezratmoker Says:

Its smart for him to bring them into the coalition; as the old man said in the Godfather..."keep your friends close and your enemies clsoer". It will be harder for the hareidim to sabatoge Barkat efforts to restore some sanity into the Municipal policies with the frummies in the government...we should respect the hareidim in Yerushalayim but they will have to accepte the fact that this is a secular city and not their exclusive province. We are not Iran and will not have self-proclaimed religious police thelling other citizens what they can wear, where they can sit on the bus or drive on Shabbos. It will NEVER happen no matter how hard they try.

5

 Dec 08, 2008 at 11:04 AM Anonymous Says:

Reply to #4  
ezratmoker Says:

Its smart for him to bring them into the coalition; as the old man said in the Godfather..."keep your friends close and your enemies clsoer". It will be harder for the hareidim to sabatoge Barkat efforts to restore some sanity into the Municipal policies with the frummies in the government...we should respect the hareidim in Yerushalayim but they will have to accepte the fact that this is a secular city and not their exclusive province. We are not Iran and will not have self-proclaimed religious police thelling other citizens what they can wear, where they can sit on the bus or drive on Shabbos. It will NEVER happen no matter how hard they try.

How can you say that IR HAKODESH is a secular city have you no shame

6

 Dec 08, 2008 at 12:21 PM ezratmoker Says:

There is nothing wrong with saying that Yerushalayim, Ir Hakodesh, is also a secular city whose inhabitants are subject to secular (aka "civil") laws enacted by through a democratic process. The hareidim can participate in that process if they choose to do so and if they win, they can legislate rules up to a point that conform to their beliefs and impose those rules on others. But, if they lose, and they did lose to Barkat, then they will have to accept a more "secular" set of rules. Alternatively, they could move to Tel Aviv.

7

 Dec 08, 2008 at 01:42 PM ain't so Says:

As you’re 100% right about Yerushalayim being an Ir Hakodesh but how do you justify “a more secular set of rules”? Either its an Ir Hakodesh which in that case you need act that way or it's not and in that case why live there you might as well live in china for that matter...

8

 Dec 08, 2008 at 02:10 PM Anonymous Says:

Reply to #7  
ain't so Says:

As you’re 100% right about Yerushalayim being an Ir Hakodesh but how do you justify “a more secular set of rules”? Either its an Ir Hakodesh which in that case you need act that way or it's not and in that case why live there you might as well live in china for that matter...

Yerushalayim is Ir Hakodesh and you and I might wish to defer to the sensibilities of the hareidim in certain areas of the city BUT our behavior is entirely voluntary because we are menschen and that doesn't change the fundamental fact that ALL of eretz yisroel is subject to the rule of civil law--not the views of one posek or rebbe from one group or another. If a woman wants to ride in front of the bus, wear a short sleeve dress that some super frummie might fear will incite him into uncontrollable behavior etc. , those are her rights in a democracy, whether in Yerushalayim or Tel Aviv and cannot be denied. We can accomodate within some reason but the hareidim have taken it too far and now they are at risk of losing it all.

9

 Dec 08, 2008 at 05:28 PM no name for now Says:

if u goto outlying countries with chassidishe communities they are very frum antwerp brazil and the like they are very pious but they dont expect to turn their metropolises into ``disneyland´´ especially in the summer soo in short they must learn to adapt in yerushalayim and to learn that u can be one jew and learn to be pious in the face of the delights of western modernism not by going backwards but by showing how good is the torah what can i tell u im not that chassidish though soo maybe we should have a conditioned enviorment and it would help me get closer to hashem

10

 Dec 08, 2008 at 08:20 PM heshy Says:

yerushalayim is full of tumah. It is less pure than boro park or williamsburg because it has movies,tattooo shops,violation of stores on shabbos which you dont find in brooklyn chassidisha areas.It also has a gay parade so how can u call it holy.

11

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