Thursday, October 17, 2013

Is Yesh Atid meant to be "Shinui 2.0"?

I don't know what made me think of it now, especially since Knesset elections have long since ended, and new ones are not (for now) anywhere on the horizon.

Yair Lapid had a famous father. Not just famous, but infamous (not in-famous) among the religious crowd for his various anti-religious stances and statements. He took his anti-religious sentiments to the Knesset, under the banner of the שינוי (literally, "change") party.

Yair Lapid came to Knesset with a message that he is not following in his father's footsteps. Some of his best friends (or at least some of his party's slate) are not only religious, but ordained rabbis (one even claiming to be a Chareidi). Not everyone in the religious sector believes his claim. (I'm still undecided, but, admittedly, I'm not that interested in that particular aspect.)

But for some reason, the motto (official?/unofficial?) of his party is "באנו לשנות" ("We've come to change"). For someone as politically savvy as Yair Lapid, it's very close to the name which symbolized the legacy he claims to be running away from. Is he sending a subtle message to those who'd like to see him pick up where his father left off, that he'll continue the job (for example, the near-religious fervor he displayed in his quest to draft Chareidim), or is it just a coincidence?

I'm guessing that his supporters will point to statements he's made which support the case that he's not anti-religious/Chareidi, and his detractors will probably point out that he uses his substantial gift with words to sugar-coat his actions and hide his true intentions.


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