• Moshe Feiglin, Zehut Chairman

The myth of the “zigzag”


It’s hard to find a more clear and coherent ideology over the years in Israeli politics – certainly not on the right – than Zehut. Is right-wing defined as loyalty to the Land of Israel, or loyalty to Binyamin Netanyahu? Is right-wing an ideology of personality, or an ideology of substance? In the winter of 2019, I suggested that the Israeli public should forget about these definitions and focus instead content. I have published the most detailed platform, which is the most loyal to all parts of our country. And I didn’t evade the question of Jerusalem and the Temple Mount, either. I invited the public to think for itself, rather than behave like fans of a football team: Are you left-wing, or pro-human rights? Because in practice, it’s really not the same. Are you right-wing, or pro-Land of Israel? Because in practice, it’s really not the same. We almost succeeded in freeing the world from these false concepts. We almost won an election with content, and with respect for the voter’s intelligence. But it turned out that it was too much to try to change language so quickly. So yes, we have exactly the same platform, with exactly the same ideology, and this time we’re calling it right-wing – a right-wing of ideology, rather than a right-wing of personality. The “zigzag” campaign of Guy Zohar, Bezalel Smotrich, and others, shows that even in the coming elections, the parties will be engaging in “why you shouldn’t vote for Zehut” instead of “why you should vote for us”. Don’t you have anything good to say about yourselves? Read this clear piece on the subject, written by Abraham Yitzchak Meir. ================================= Feiglin isn’t God, and he’s allowed to change his mind, but the current claim that Feiglin is zigzagging between campaign A and campaign B is simply false. What do they say? “Fake news.” No. Feiglin hasn’t changed his views in the last 25 years. He’s become more moderate, he’s changed his style, he’s adapted his explanatory strategy in the wake of various experiences... but his views have remained as solid as ever. And I don’t say that because I worship him, but because I simply pay attention when I listen to him, and try to read between the lines. I’m sorry that these falsehoods are running through the media and damaging the message. So, in the previous campaign, Feiglin had hoped to create a new discourse, one which isn’t consistent with the current left-right paradigm in Israel. Feiglin asked citizens to think about the content for which they vote, and not just about their “natural group of affiliation”, meaning that a party is not a soccer team that I support because my grandfather did, or because my best friend told me to – but because there’s a platform here, and we get to think about it. And yes, he hoped (and even succeeded) to draw votes from the leftist camp. That’s nothing to be ashamed of. Because those people who had up until then felt that they “belonged naturally” to the left-wing camp, opened their minds to the “idea” of the Land of Israel, let’s say, thought for a moment about Oslo and its results, and said – wow, he’s right. Look how lovely it is when you talk ideas, and not camps. As part of the idea of liberty, Feiglin wants citizens to take responsibility, for their vote, among other things. That they should think for themselves, and evaluate the politicians whom they are empowering. This is encouragement for maturity, and the attempt to create a new discourse is definitely a part of this. Feiglin clarified – I’m not “right-wing” in terms of that being the group with which I affiliate, and I’m not “left-wing”, but I am “the Land of Israel”, and I am “human rights”. So wait, you say. If you’re the Land of Israel, you’re right-wing. So say you’re right-wing. True, it’s certainly possible to say that this is the ideology of the right, and always has been, but he deliberately tried to avoid this terminology. This avoidance exacted a price, because the public became confused, and in the first campaign, they feared that Feiglin would promote the left, so he made a clear statement in this second campaign; not because he changed his mind, but because he realized that the public didn’t understand this complex message. Understand?


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