A Political Calculation


I read with interest Gary Rosenblatt’s fine piece, “Next-Gen Americans Pulling Away From Israel” (June 30).

One thing I learned in my political science classes is that the primary goal of all politicians is to get elected and remain in power as long as possible. In this respect, Bibi is no different than all the others. We should always remember that charedim vote in Israeli elections whereas we American Jews do not. Hence the prime minister has made a calculation to satisfy his Israeli supporters even if it means dissing his American ones.

As a Modern Orthodox Jew, I have no problem with setting aside a separate area at the Kotel for egalitarian prayer services. However, if I were a Conservative or Reform Jew, I would be somewhat annoyed if my co-religionists were to be denied this privilege. Would this prompt me to reduce my support and allegiance to the state? Perhaps. But when taken together with the state’s lack of recognition of my clergy and the various rites they perform (conversion, marriage, divorce, etc.), I would be, to say the least, “ticked off.” Would this feeling translate into a lessening of support (financial and/or otherwise)? Probably. But Bibi has made the decision to favor his domestic supporters over his international ones. Now we will just have to wait and see what the repercussions of this move will be.

West Hempstead, L.I.