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Wanted: A New Israeli Right

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Naftali Bennett and Ayelet Shaked had pretensions of creating “a new right”; a right that unifies while maintaining ideological purity and virtue; religious and secular Jews seeking to preserve the wholeness of the people and the land. A party that would be what Likud, before it became a single-leader party, should have been. A political framework in which the sons and daughters of religious Zionism would join up with their secular and traditional (but not Orthodox) co-religionists to restore Israel to practical Zionism.

The idea inspires hope. The potential for success was, and remains, great. Many Likud supporters who were disappointed by Benjamin Netanyahu looked forward to it. Many religious Zionists, disgusted by the regime of the rabbis and by the political hacks of the National Religious Party and its successor, Habayit Hayehudi, were enthusiastic about it. But instead of persevering and leading a consistent, long-range process, chose repeatedly to stand at the head of a divided, if not entirely fragmented, “hack-eat-hack” religious framework.

By giving in to their fear of following........

© Haaretz