Join The Conversation With Mishpacha's Weekly Newsletter



Inside Outside

Aryeh Ehrlich

The challenges of power and protektziya can corrupt even the most idealistic of politicians, yet for 27 years, senior MK Rabbi Moshe Gafni has stayed out of the branja. “I know the system inside out, but I’ve made sure not to become part of it,” he says of a Knesset career that has earned him unanimous respect as a maverick for social causes. Yet nothing matched the bill he pushed through last week.

Tuesday, December 01, 2015

The humble apartment on Bnei Brak’s Rechov Rabi Nissim Gaon isn’t usually open for media briefings. Even now, as we speak, MK Rabbi Moshe Gafni squirms, clearly determined to protect his family’s privacy. The access we’re enjoying to this small dining room is largely unprecedented, a rare chance to speak — really speak — with this paradoxical figure. Moshe Gafni is one of the most powerful lawmakers in Israel; yet by his own admission, he holds no power at all, for he makes no decisions on his own. An unapologetic and fierce advocate for chareidim who’s widely respected across Israeli society for his integrity and fairness. An expert in the legalities and mechanics of the law who’s never lost the fiery zeal of a sidewalk protester. A shrewd, practical operator whose values still burn inside him, a seasoned maverick fueled by a simple passion for what’s right and holy. Gafni is the most veteran chareidi parliamentarian, now beginning his 28th year in the Knesset. In all that time, he’s rarely been quiet — except when it comes to himself. As vocal as he can be, the inner core of his persona has always remained somewhat elusive. Of course, there are the images of the politician building his succah, shopping for toys with his eineklach, catching a Minchah, but they are the result of quick-acting paparazzi rather than careful planning by a public relations staff.

To read the rest of this story, please buy this issue of Mishpacha or sign up for a weekly subscription

Share this page with a friend. Fill in the information below, and we'll email your friend a link to this page on your behalf.

Your name
Your email address
You friend's name
Your friend's email address
Please type the characters you see in the image into the box provided.
CAPTCHA
Message


MM217
 
Weekly Struggle
Shoshana Friedman Cover text: promise big and deliver what we promise
Only Through You
Rabbi Moshe Grylak A response to last week’s letter, “Waiting in Passaic”
Are You Making a Kiddush Hashem?
Yonoson Rosenblum In communal affairs, “one bad apple…” often applies
Chance of a Lifetime
Eytan Kobre I identify with the urge to shout, “No, don’t do it!”
Work / Life Solutions with Bunim Laskin
Moe Mernick "You only get every day once"
Seeking a Truly Meaningful Blessing
Dovid Zaidman We want to get married. Help us want to date
Shivah Meditations
Rabbi Emanuel Feldman Equivalence between two such polar opposites is puzzling
Magnet Moment
Jacob L. Freedman Everyone’s fighting a battle we know nothing about
Secrets and Surprises
Riki Goldstein Top-secret suits Eli Gerstner just fine
Blasts of Warmth
Riki Goldstein Keeping the chuppah music upbeat in low temperatures
Behind the Scenes
Faigy Peritzman The intrinsic value of each mitzvah
Good Vision
Sarah Chana Radcliffe Good or bad, nice or not? What you see is what you get
Day of Peace
Mrs. Elana Moskowitz On Shabbos we celebrate peace within and without