Wednesday, November 02, 2011

5772 Shaping Up to be Political Year

This past year, 5771 was a politically "dry" year. It contained no major political challenges and we dedicated the year to developing our ideology, the Tomorrow Magazine and our platform for running a truly Jewish state.

By contrast, 5772 is shaping up to provide us with many political challenges. The scheduled elections for the Likud Central Committee and Likud branch councils, followed by the elections for the Likud institutions are just the promo for the Likud elections for Party Chairman and later, primaries for the Likud Knesset roster. Even if we assume that general elections will be held on time (a pretty far-reaching assumption) we are entering a time period rife with political challenges.

Last year, we saw how the bridgehead created by Manhigut Yehudit in the national ruling party has become a wide open gate through which scores of faith based people are registering. The Likud has become the legitimate and preferred political platform for the faith-based public. Many who had originally opposed Manhigut Yehudit's entrance into the Likud have now joined, themselves, and are working within the national ruling party.

We encourage all the faith-based forces in the party – whether they registered through Manhigut Yehudit or through other organizations – to take responsibility and to run for all the positions open in the upcoming Likud elections. Manhigut Yehudit means Jewish Leadership: It is a movement dedicated to creating leadership that is motivated by Jewish values for the State of Israel. Of course, Moshe Feiglin will also be running for chairmanship of the Likud and leadership of the State.

When we get into the thick of the elections, it is easy to lose sight of the big picture and the goal for which we are running. Election time is extremely intense and that is why it is important now, before we get seriously involved in the intricacies of the elections, to remind ourselves of our goal. It is very important that we manage to get the very best candidates into the Likud Central Committee, the various committees and the Knesset roster. But our goal is not to get more "religious" candidates into the Likud. There are already plenty of those. Our goal is leadership. That is why we are in the Likud and that is why so many other faith-based people followed us into the party. The fact that we are in the Likud has fostered the election of excellent Likud MKs who work day and night to advance faith-based causes. Without Manhigut Yehudit, these MKs would not have been elected and the huge change that we are spearheading would not be taking place.

When we look at our achievements, it is easy to forget our real goal. If we forget why we entered the Likud, the fate of the faith-based forces in the Likud will be that of the National Religious Party in the Knesset: damage control and concern for its sector only. All of our important achievements to date are significant only within the framework of a greater strategic goal of Jewish leadership for Israel.

The 18th of Cheshvan (Nov. 15) is the last day to declare candidacy for the Likud Central Committee or for the Likud branch councils. Now is the time to take the plunge and assume a leadership position in the nationalist ruling party.

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