powerful people who want him forcefully retired as Chief Rabbi of Efrat, this was time for him to get his general policies across. Both Riskin and Glick made statements about it in Hebrew for the Hebrew language press, obviously.
The two issues they seemed to agree most on concern conversion and women poskot aka "rabbis," though the word "rabbi" or "rabbah"wasn't mentioned. Riskin gave his Halachik/Jewish Law defense of both policies. About conversion, he said that for those with patrilinial (via the father) Jewish history/roots there is a concept of zera yisrael, Jewish Seed, which when recognized makes for an easier conversion, but a conversion nevertheless.
Riskin also gave a halachik defense of knowledgeable women decided matters of Jewish Law.
And, yes, they did mention Land for Peace, which is something that they have agreed to disagree about. We all know that Glick has been one of the most vociferous and convincing opponent of that policy. Simply put, it has been proven, over and over that when we give the Arabs our Land, we suffer more terrorism and hostility. Glick challenged Riskin to give halachik reasons to defend his policy, but he refused. Actually, he did admit that it hasn't been successful, but for those who wanted to hear his defense of it from a halachik point of view, there was great disappointment. Rabbi Riskin stated:
"Land for Peace is a security issue, not a halachik issue." Rabbi Shlomo RiskinI will never forget how during the tense and frightening times leading up to Disengagement, Riskin stayed on the fence, saying that he couldn't make a decision, because Disengagement was a policy, problematic as it was, had been legally voted in by the Israeli Government. The late Rabbi Aaron Lichtenstein, Z"L came out supporting it for that very reason.
|photos by Rose and |
graphics by Fred
And I completely disagree with Riskin's claim that the question of Land for Peace has nothing to do with halacha. We, the State of Israel and the Jewish People/Religion are not like any other. Our military victories from 1948 onward and the fact that terrorist missiles usually land in "empty fields" are all due to the fact that we are a Holy Nation and G-d protects us. For that reason, every policy, especially security and Land must be looked at from a Jewish Halachik perspective. Ordinary "rules" don't apply here; that is why the State of Israel continues to exist.
In Israel there can be no separation between state and religion, because our existance is only because of the Jewish Religion, not history.
Here is the recording/video of the entire program: