Gafni: I Am A Thousand Times More Zionist Than The Reform Jew Who Sits In The Jewish Agency


Gafni attacked the Jewish Agency, which has been pushing hard for non-halachic conversions and an egalitarian Kosel, asking why Israel finances the organization and why it exists.

Gafni began by declaring: “I am a thousand times more Zionist than the Reform Jew who sits in the Jewish Agency and lives in the United States.”

MK Aliza Lavi of Yesh Atid challenged, “Do you say Hallel on Yom Ha’atzmaut?”

Gafni replied, “I say Hallel on Yom Ha’atzmaut as your party head does, exactly the same.”

Then he got down to business, saying, “For a long time I’ve been bothered by the question of why we need the Jewish Agency. Perhaps it was needed once… Why do we need the Jewish Agency today? What does it do? What does it contribute to the Jewish nation, the people of Israel, the State of Israel?”

Gafni argued that at least 80% of its budget comes from the Israeli taxpayer. No tenders are issued for its public projects, which include comfortable jobs and trips abroad for those involved, nor does it have to submit reports of what it does with its funds.

“I will not let them off,” Gafni concluded. “Why do we have to finance [their] operations in Israel with the money of the government of Israel? Why can’t we give it to Israeli residents? Why are they exempt from giving things out to bids?”

Without addressing Gafni’s challenges in regard to tenders and transparency, MK Michael Bornstein of Kulanu responded that the Jewish Agency, founded in 1929 and reconstituted in 1948, is still needed. Its 1,200 overseas emissaries encourage aliyah, maintain a link with overseas Jewry and fight BDS and delegitimization of Jews on overseas campuses. In Israel, the agency helps new immigrants integrate in 35 immigrant centers.

Of its $380 million annual budget, only $118 million came from the government; over two-thirds came from overseas, Bornstein claimed.

The Knesset voted to continue the discussion at a meeting of the Immigration, Absorption and Diaspora Committee.

{  Israel Bureau}


  1. Gafni definitely has become extremely Zionists. That’s why his target is Chareidi Yeshiva boys, force them into the army, make them Zionists and secularize them.

  2. Gafni replied, “I say Hallel on Yom Ha’atzmaut as your party head does, exactly the same.”

    When did Gafni become Daati Leumi?

    To paraphrase Lord Acton: Zionism corrupts, Zionist politics corrupts absolutely

    • “Hallel..Party head does”

      In other words :Does Lapid even say it?!Does he daven at all?!
      It’s actually an old one.
      We’ll start to say Hallel when Ben Gurion will say it.

  3. Rav Shach zt”l once said about the secular ” they call themselves zionists ?….we are the real zionists !….we say three times a day ותחזינה עינינו בשובך לציון ברחמים…..and in benching רחם נא…ועל ציון משכן כבודך…..when do they ever utter these words ? we do !….and we are proud of it…..we are the real zionists !….”

  4. a noted mashgiach, who has since passed on, approached someone for a donation for the yeshiva. the person answered that he only donated to to zionist organizations. The mashgiach replied: i came to EY before it was a state. i married her, raised my children here, earned my parnassah here despite the fact that i was offered many positions in chutz l’aretz with much higher salaries. but i stayed in EY. who can claim to be a greater ohev tzion than i? theman gave the mashgiach a sizable donation

    • And in what viewpoint are all chareidim decendened from early aliyahniks? Who’s to say more present day Zionist dont decend from the early aliyah’niks? Maybe most chareidim are defended from recent immigres than people from early aliyahs!


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