Religion Magazine

Degel Hatorah is Now a Zionist Party

By Gldmeier @gldmeier
I never paid much attention to the inner workings of the World Zionist Organization. to me it just felt like an organization for arranging jobs for cronies and for funneling money to connected groups. The recent WZO elections provided some intrigue, but I still did not pay too much attention to it.
Now that the right wing parties have all come out ahead and recently signed a "wall to wall" coalition agreement, WZO is back in the news, and it got me thinking.
First, the Reform and Conservative and leftist groups are all upset. Their stronghold of power and connections was "taken" from them, and they are upset about it. Boo Hoo. They lost the elections fair and square and that's what happens. They should take some example from their opponents and learn how to mobilize their supporters.
Second, back during the election period I wrote about some of the intrigue, mostly about the debates among the Haredi rabbonim as to whether the  Haredi community abroad should vote in the elections or not. I said that I am not a big fan of going to into someone else's house and taking control, even according to the rules. I still am somewhat uncomfortable with what happened, but they played according to the rules, so it is what it is. 
Third, and the main point of what I wanted to mention, is the Eretz Hakodesh faction taking up a significant role in the running of WZO, in addition to just joining the organization.
Does anyone remember about ten years ago when Shas decided to join WZO and Degel Hatorah was highly critical of Shas for abandoning Haredi principles and joining a Zionist organization? And now Degel Hatorah, under a different name, has also joined the World Zionist Organization. And not just joined, but is also taking a significant role. Eretz Hakodesh has an Israeli office that is run by people from Degel Hatorah (among others), including MK Yitzchak Pindrus and Rav Nechemia Malinowitz. 
So Degel Hatorah is now a Zionist organization.  Mazel tov.
Also, Bibi turns out to have been right. Back in 2010 when Shas joined and Degel was critical, Bibi expressed dismay that Degel didn't join as well and said that he expects that in a few years they too will recognize the importance and influence and will join. And now they did. It took a little more than the 3 or 4 years Bibi mentioned, but in the end he was basically right. They saw the money and influence and decided there is no reason to not take a piece of that pie. As King Solomon said, והכסף יענה את הכל. 
Good luck to all of them.
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