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Dec 28, 2011

Netanyahu Supports Splitting Bet Shemesh Into Two Cities

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has come up with a creative solution to the problem in Bet Shemesh. His solution is, and it is not limited to bet Shemesh, that a city with a general population should not have a haredi mayor running it, and vice versa I presume the vice versa - I did not hear that in his name).

To avoid all the problems, and hatred and smearing and violence, Netanyahu said he would support any solution, and he has now supposedly signed on, or is considering signing on, to an arrangement to split Bet Shemesh into 2 separate cities. Old Bet Shemesh would be for the general population, and Bet Shemesh Ilit, or Ramot Bet Shemesh, would be for the haredim. Similar to Modiin and Modiin Ilit, and other similar split cities.

My thoughts:
1. I thought we and he are opposed to segregation. Now he says we have to segregate religious and non-religious?

2. I don't consider this a fair arrangement. Divinding the city like this would leave those of us in RBS A stuck living with the thugs and dealing with the same problem. he is just minimizing their influence a bit. He is not helping me in any way. Instead of dealing with the goons and finding a way to put an end to their violence, he is just shifting the problem.

3. Many Dati Leumi live in RBS, and I am sure many of them wanted to live in a mixed city and not in a haredi city. That is possibly why they didn't live in, or consider living in, Bitar or Kiryat Sefer. So now they would be stuck in a Haredi city because their house fell on the wrong side of the new border? Would they offer house swaps to people on the wrong side who wanted to go with the other (either direction)?

4. This is not really a new proposal. Some of the councilmen have recently proposed it as a solution, and it has very little support. Besides for that, many might not know or remember, but about 13 years ago when the neighborhood was still new and got horrible service from the Iryah and anything else related to old Bet Shemesh (there were no street lights, no street signs, ambulatory service was horrible if they could eve find the house, etc). After a certain point of frustration, people decided to establish a communal committee to deal with the issues and work, or fight, with the Iryah. At the time, we proposed a division of the city because we were so upset with the poor service being received in RBS. After meeting with various officials, we dropped the idea because we were told it would never pass as it would cost the government too much and the trend was to combine small cities and not create new ones. So Netanyahu's idea is really an old one, but the perspective is very different.

5. Interestingly, many politicians have been making comments about the plan. Most oppose it, while some think it is a good idea to consider. Interestingly, Labor Party head Sheli Yachimovitz spoke out against the plan (I don't remember her reasons). That is interesting because locally it is the Labor representative on the City Council, Richard Peres, who has been the main proponent of this solution. Looks like they are not coordinated.

of course there are other issues why it won't be supported in general or work, many of them being financial reasons...

14 comments:

  1. The ongoing difficulty is that part of supposedly fringe Chareidi culture is an ongoing attempt to make living amongst other groups impossible. No matter how much accommodation these whack-jobs are offered they will simply come up with a new demand or stricture, declare it to be Torah MiSinai or Yehareg v'al Yaavor and then make lives miserable over it because that's what they want: you to be miserable.
    Yees, I hear your frustration about having to leave RBS but think about this: how many of the post-Yuogslav wars and their carnage would have been avoided if all Croats had simply moved into Croatia, all Bosnians into Bosnia and all Serbs into Serbia? Instead, on principle of not wanting to give up their homes, they fought multiple bloody wars. No, it's not fair but life isn't. Different ethnic groups often have trouble living together and this time one group is defined by its desire to be difficult.

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  2. This was my idea and posted to Akiva's post on the issue. They will no absorb, it will take too many years.

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  3. I'm with you, Rafi! Thanks a lot, Bibi - I didn't move from Beitar to Beit Shemesh to end up in another haredi ghetto, where rabbis can disrupt family events at their leisure and order restaurants to close because couples might, chas v'shalom, sit together! If this is Bibi's idea of a solution, I think I may vote Labor next time.

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  4. And what happens when they run out out housing in the Haredi city and start moving into non haredi cities? Any solution that involves retreating means the thugs won and we lost

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  5. You know, I think one solution to this might be to eliminate, or severely curtail, the yeshiva draft exemption. If these people all had to go into the army, some of them might just leave the country. Others might remain non-citizens, which would mean no right to vote. Moreover, it might give the government a legal way to expel these troublemakers in RBS B as undesirable aliens. That's besides the other reason for eliminating the exemption, namely basic fairness.

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  6. srugim don't consider beitar or quiryat sefer because these places have acceptance committees. trying to get in is a big haval al hatzman

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  7. I have said this before, that when we left Gaza in 2005, the anti-Zionists of RBS Beit should have been resettled there, killing 4 birds with one stone. One, we would be rid of them. Second,they would move into good housing. Three, they would be with their Palestinian friends living in Eretz Yisrael. Four, they would mind the place until we have to conquer it again. Alas, no one took my offer up. About the present situation, where does Nachala come - in the chariedi or secular city? I hope RBS is never classified as the chareidi city - I do not want to have to leave my home (now I know exactly how they flt in Gush katif). Anyway, Orot girls school is not even in RBS.

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  8. that would have been a good solution

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  9. Considering the reaction that this proposal got from other MKs (and bearing in mind that Bibi is one of the smartest people in the world), it occurred to me that this may be a tactical move. Any suggestion that Bibi makes will be ridiculed. But this one is so bad that other MKs were not only railing against it, they were making their own suggestions. This required thought on their part on the issue. Now, when Bibi makes another suggestion, it will be met by a Knesset which has considered the issues and given thought to what types of solutions are practical and which aren't, which may yield a fruitful discussion for once.

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  10. Maybe we should have a voluntary segregation and divide the city according to personal preference of each household. Pass around a ballot to each household, and you can elect whether you want your apartment to be governed by Beit Shemesh (and the laws of the State of Israel) or whether you want to secede and become part of the new municipality/city-state of Lech-Teda-Ech-Mistadrim-Bli-Acheirim-Sheyeshalmu-Et-Chesboniyotechem. Households that fail to return their ballot forms on time by default become part of the latter entity.

    My solution is no less practical, and will satisfy more people, than this proposal to separate RBS from old BS. They're both BS. Pun intended.

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  11. The charadim needs an incentive to resolve this issue. They should cease all building in RBS3 and stop issuing Tofes Arba. Maybe RBS3 should not be a separate town.

    They need to basically resolve this issue from two angles. Legal and education.


    1) The legal aspect is to give the police and court systems more power by having the knesset implement the RICO act similar to the US.

    2) The second part is have all the Charadi leaders (including Rabbanim and MKs) needs to strongly condem the Extreme Tznius hashkafa of the Sikrikim/zealots and send a 10,000 Charadim to counter protest. They should not be imposing their made up chumrot on the public. Than again most people know that they are trying to change the area and drive down real estate.

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  12. oops I forgot to sign - Dovid from Modiin.

    The charadim needs an incentive to resolve this issue. They should cease all building in RBS3 and stop issuing Tofes Arba. Maybe RBS3 should not be a separate town.

    They need to basically resolve this issue from two angles. Legal and education.


    1) The legal aspect is to give the police and court systems more power by having the knesset implement the RICO act similar to the US.

    2) The second part is have all the Charadi leaders (including Rabbanim and MKs) needs to strongly condem the Extreme Tznius hashkafa of the Sikrikim/zealots and send a 10,000 Charadim to counter protest. They should not be imposing their made up chumrot on the public. Than again most people know that they are trying to change the area and drive down real estate.

    - Dovid from Modiin.

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  13. The Original AuthorDecember 29, 2011 2:16 PM

    Dovid from Modiin: don't know if you read my analysis of Charedi society as a fear society here, but based on that, your statement that "The Charedi Rabbonim must..." is like shouting into the wind. Either they are True Believers, in which case they will do no such thing, or else they are Doublethinkers, in which case they will be too afraid to do any such thing. I know of no dissident RBS-B Charedi rabbonim who are brave enough to stand up and condemn the violence loudly, forcefully and unambiguously. So forget about starting any sentence with, "The Charedim should..." They are living in a fear society, and the doublethinkers will not act alone; they need outside support to break out.

    Sharansky's solution as applied to Charedi society is simply that just as Reagan called the Evil Empire for what it was, we outsiders have to call the sikrikim for what they are: evil. They think they have G-d on their side, and so, lehavdil, do the Muslim terrorists. They cannot be reasoned or negotiated with; they have to be defeated. Completely. With overpowering force. Throw a bunch of them in jail with the strictest sentences the law allows, and do not show mercy to the cruel. ubiarta hara mikerbecha, v'chol Yisrael yishm'u v'yirau. Once you've dusted up the leading troublemakers, you encourage the "99%" (as Rav Horowitz calls the majority that I call the Doublethinkers) to stand up and be counted, and suddenly you have a more moderate and tolerant Charedi population that you can live with in peace and harmony, happily ever after.

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