February 21, 2019 — New York
American Jewish Committee (AJC) does not normally comment on political parties and candidates during an election. But with the announcement that Otzma Yehudit (“Jewish Power”), a new political party formed by longtime followers of the late Rabbi Meir Kahane, is now seeking election to the Knesset, we feel compelled to speak out.
The views of Otzma Yehudit are reprehensible. They do not reflect the core values that are the very foundation of the State of Israel. The party might conceivably gain enough votes to enter the next Knesset, and potentially even become part of the governing coalition.
Historically, the views of extremist parties, reflecting the extreme left or the extreme right, have been firmly rejected by mainstream parties, even if the electoral process of Israel’s robust democracy has enabled their presence, however small, in the Knesset.
Ultimately, it is up to Israel’s Central Elections Commission to determine, as it has done in the past, whether Otzma Yehudit can be listed on the ballot on Election Day.
Looking ahead to April 9, AJC reaffirms our commitment to Israel’s democratic and Jewish character, which we hope will be the ultimate winners in every election cycle.