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State? Gantz announced the budgeting of an ultra-Orthodox settlement yeshiva - headed by his close associate Israel today


After thanking the cadets of a pre-military preparatory school for their participation in a propaganda video he ran on the networks, Gantz came to visit an ultra-Orthodox seder yeshiva and announced his ministry's decision to budget for it • The chairman of the yeshiva is close to the minister of defense and his party, and was described as Gantz's liaison to ultra-orthed society • What was Lapid actually trying to achieve in his speech at the assembly The United Nations

The relationship between Rabbi Yonatan Reis and Defense Minister Benny Gantz is well known in the ultra-orthodox sector.

As an ultra-Orthodox activist for the recruitment of ultra-Orthodox to the IDF, Gantz Bryce found the perfect combination - an ultra-Orthodox person, young and dynamic, a Chassid of Belez, with an ultra-Orthodox appearance and full access to the world of yeshivot, who vigorously promotes the agenda that every secular party has been trying to promote in recent years: recruiting ultra-orthedim and integrating them into the market education and employment.

The initial connection, about two years ago, was made by MK Michael Bitton, then Minister of Civil and Social Affairs at the Ministry of Defense. The connection was immediate. The two quickly realized the potential of their collaboration and the bond grew tighter. Today, Rice and Bitton define themselves as close friends.

At a certain point, Beaton decided to raise the level of connection between Rice and the political activities of his party - Resilience to Israel and later Blue and White - and introduced him to Benny Gantz.

In this case too, the relationship between the two grew stronger, a relationship from which both parties benefited: Reiss, who could promote his life's project - recruiting ultra-Orthodox;

And Gantz, who realized even then that the ultra-orthodox public was his key to political success and a potential prime ministership.

Gantz is also basing the current election campaign on the future cooperation he will supposedly have with the ultra-orthodox factions.

Already in March 2019, the journalist Ari Kalman published the connection between Rice and the leadership of Blue and White on the popular ultra-Orthodox website "Be Hadari Haredim".

"Quietly, quietly, behind the scenes, since the establishment of the Resilience to Israel party and the entry of former Chief of Staff Benny Gantz into political life, a Chasidic priest has been working for him as the party's contact person with the ultra-Orthodox sector," it says, "This is a Chasidic priest, a resident of Givat Ze'ev, who is used by Businesses, and in recent years he established the Haredi settlement yeshiva 'Hadvata' in Gan Yavneh, while helping Haredi young men who are interested in it, in the process of integrating them into the IDF and academic institutions. His name is Yonatan Reiss, he is about 30 years old and close to Michal Biton, who is currently one of the senior members of the Blue and White party. In recent years, Bitton has helped a lot, when he served as the head of the Yeruham Council, to Rice's institution, and recently Bitton connected Rice to senior members of the Blue and White Party.

Kalman detailed Reiss's role in Gantz's party: "Reiss, due to being a Hasidic shepherd, serves as the party's contact person in all matters related to the ultra-Orthodox sector. For example, Reiss is currently assisting in the formation of the party's election platform in everything related to the issue of ultra-Orthodox recruitment. The main work of Rice is opposite the leaders of the parties that make up Blue and White - with Yoaz Hendel as a representative of the Talm party led by Moshe Ya'alon, Hili Trooper as a representative of Hossan Israel, and with Ofer Shelah as a representative of the Yesh Atid party."

"In the future," he wrote, "Blue and White hope that, through Rice, they will also be able to reach members of the ultra-Orthodox public and the official representatives in the Knesset and the various communities in order to soften their position regarding future political cooperation with Benny Gantz, if and when he succeeds in obtaining a blocking bloc and the president grants him the right to form the coalition".

So much for things published in the ultra-orthodox press, which have not been denied so far.

A year later, the relationship tightened even more, when Reiss became a key member of the steering team for the ultra-Orthodox recruitment law as a representative of the Ministry of Defense - headed by Gantz.

The state visit

But alongside the business dealings and mixing with the politicians from blue and white (today the state camp), the highlight of Reiss is undoubtedly the "Hadvata" yeshiva - the first settlement yeshiva for the ultra-Orthodox sector which he founded, in part through an association of the same name, which coordinates the yeshiva's financial activities.

The association's address is Rice's address, and in the documents of the Registrar of Associations, Rice is defined as the CEO of the association and is authorized to sign on its behalf. Also on Yeshiva Hadvata's website, Rice's name appears under the title "CEO of the Institutions".

Last week, Benny Gantz visited Rice's meeting and announced that his office recognized her last year for budgeting.

"I am excited to be here and see how a vision becomes a reality," Gantz said at the yeshiva, next to Reiss, "You are advancing the country that does not need enough for this vital issue, and I am proud of you for choosing to dedicate yourself to the world of Torah and combine donation and volunteering for the country. All this while you are a part From an excellent framework that does not give you discounts.

"Our new service outline seeks to open up the possibilities of the service to all parts of the population. You are destined for the most important service - and that is the service in the IDF, which ultimately takes care of Israel's security.

But other young people will also be able to integrate into the police, the fire brigade, the world of medicine and emergency services.

I make sure that all our new routes will allow you to maintain your identity and your spiritual level."

Gantz added that "this idea is also strongly related to the need to connect all sections of the people. In order to connect us, I have a task to know your needs best, and you have a task to be committed to service and giving for the sake of the people and the country."

Gantz announced at the same time that he had decided to budget for the Yeshiva, as well as similar institutions and those that encourage dedicated routes for the ultra-Orthodox, at a cost of "tens of millions" as he put it, in the next two years.

In the meantime, the decision to turn the "Hadvata" yeshiva into a budgeted yeshiva opened the budgetary tap in favor of Rice's institution, which, as I recall, served until recently as a central political axis in the defense minister's party.

The budget is mostly transferred from the Ministry of Education, but the Ministry of Defense itself also transferred NIS 250,000 to Rice's association in the only year in which it became, by the Ministry, a budgeted institution.

The total income from the various government ministries reached NIS 608,000 in 2021.

Just for the sake of comparison, the association's total budget a year earlier was NIS 648,000, most of it (NIS 543,000) from tuition, and some (NIS 105,000) from donations.

So the government budget was 94% of the association's total budget in the previous year.

And the flowers for Gantz.

The problem, of course, is not Bryce, in the association or in the yeshiva - but in what appears to be the subjection of procedures to political needs on the part of the Minister of Defense and the chairman of the state camp. A matter of norms.

Rabbi Yonatan Reiss, founder of the Yeshivot Hadvata network, responded that "I have never served in any position on behalf of the Blue and White party, certainly I have not received a salary and I have not been involved in politics. In the last decade I have founded and am leading a life enterprise that contributes to the state, society and the economy. All my activities are done in accordance with the law And subject to the highest standards. I will continue this activity both in the coming decade and in the decade after. The fruits of this life enterprise are the future of the State of Israel, and no one is prouder of that than me."

The Ministry of Defense stated that "Hadvata Yeshiva is budgeted by the Ministry of Education - Department of Torah Institutions, as are the Hesder Yeshiva, and therefore the question should be addressed to them.

As part of a purchase order with Hadvata Educational Enterprises (AR), the Ministry of Defense participates at a cost of NIS 250,000 in technological tuition fees for the candidates in preparation for their recruitment into the IDF in the technological formation.

Someone to run with

This story joins a video that Gantz published a few weeks ago, in which he is seen running with teenagers behind him trying to catch up.

In the state camp, they were very enthusiastic about the video and distributed it with extensive funding on social networks.

The public did not remain indifferent to the special video, and along with jokes like "Forrest Gantz", paraphrasing the well-known running scene from the popular movie, there were also many encouraging reactions to the figure of the leader that was revealed to their eyes.

At the end of the video, the filmmakers, on Gantz's behalf, thanked the students of the "Ofek" pre-military preparatory school.

Preparations that are budgeted, of course, by the Ministry of Defense - headed by Gantz.

Is this a mistake?

hard to believe.

Already on July 13, 2022, Nofer Shargai, senior coordinator of the pre-military preparatory schools on behalf of the Ministry of Settlement, sent a memorandum to all the heads of the preparatory schools, alerting them to political activity during the election period.

"We saw fit to mention the limitations set forth in the regulations of the pre-military preparatory schools," she wrote and detailed: "Section 9C of the regulations: 'In the three years preceding the year for which the recognition is sought and throughout the period in which the preparatory school operates and will operate, the corporation that operates it was not and will not be legally or financially connected with a political party, and will not hold a political activity", i.e. "an organization or public assembly related to a party or other political body, organized participation in a demonstration or procession related to a political party or political body, organized participation in public propaganda, written or oral, of a political party or body ".

No response was given on behalf of Gantz.

Every rabbi is gold

Yair Lapid's speech at the United Nations brought the political discourse back to the fore, after many years in the freezer. His decision to do so, during an election period, shows the political strategy adopted by Lish Atid in these elections, which is quite different from last time.

Torch at the UN, photo: AFP

Lapid has another notable advantage that Gantz does not have, nor Netanyahu - he is the prime minister.

If the political system rolls into another round of elections in the absence of a decision - he will continue to hold power for the time being

Lapid understands that it will be difficult to refute Gantz's message that he has the higher chances of forming a government if Netanyahu does not obtain 61 mandates.

Even in the holiday interviews he gave to the printed press, Lapid mainly preferred to avoid the question of how he would form a government without the commonwealth and talk about other things.

Placing the political issue at the top of the agenda is an attempt to establish his status as the head of the center-left camp and win as many mandates as possible from the bloc's parties.

In Lapid's eyes, there is only a great future approaching for Likud, it can receive the mandate from the president if Netanyahu fails once more.

Lapid has another notable advantage that Gantz does not have, and neither does Netanyahu - he is the prime minister.

If the political system rolls into another election cycle in the absence of a decision - he will continue to hold power for the time being.

In the meantime, there is no one in the political system who manages to stop the message that Gantz has a coalition, despite the fact that this is unfounded.

Last week, Gantz visited Rabbi Elbaz, who called him "the prime minister", and the photos of the visit spread like wildfire.

Each such event seems insignificant to the ultra-Orthodox public, but it turns out to be very significant in the general public, especially among those who buy the message of Gantz's coalition with the ultra-Orthodox.

Every rabbi is worth gold.

Every picture is a diamond.

In the meantime, the mandates are parked, and despite the efforts of Lapid and Netanyahu to bring Gantz down to single digits, he has remained there for a long time, stable and firm.

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Source: israelhayom

All news articles on 2022-09-29

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