sarah and harry Laker memorial
scholar in residence weekend
Sharon wins a vote in the Knesset, but may end up
losing his government.
Jewish Telegraphic Agency
simply are looking for a way to delay the
disengagement plan indefinitely and
accused them of planning a putsch
Things came to a head in the last hour
before the vote. The National Religious
Party, which is part of Sharon's- govern-
ment but which opposes disengagement,
served the prime minister with an ulti-
matum: Hold a referendum or else.
NRP Cabinet Minister Zevulun Orlev
said the party had received rabbinical
approval to remain in Sharon's coalition
until the end of its term in November
2006, even if the referendum goes
against them. But if Sharon refuses to
hold a referendum, Orlev warned, the
party will leave the coalition within two
Then, immediately after the vote,
Netanyahu dropped his bombshell:
Unless Sharon agrees within 14 days to
hold a referendum, he, Livnat, Katz and
Naveh will leave the coalition as well.
What that means is that if Sharon
doesn't buckle — and so far there are no
signs that he will — the Likud will split
in two, with Netanyahu and Sharon on
Sharon finds himself left with three
possible choices: Build a new coalition
or parliamentary pact with Labor and
the left; agree to hold a referendum; or
push for early elections. None of the
choices is easy.
• To get a majority coalition with
Labor and the left, Sharon would need
the support of at least 17 of Likud's 40
legislators — and it's not clear he can
count on that many.
• Agreeing to hold a referendum
would be a monumental reversal and
would leave Sharon severely weakened.
• And early elections would be a
major gamble that he well might lose.
Sharon is unlikely to agree to the refer-
His most likely game plan will be to
try to formalize the support of Labor
and the left and keep going as prime
minister as long as he can, betting that
his opponents in the Likud and parties
further to the right won't force elections
because they, too, fear losing their
In case it does come to an election
ation shaarey zedek
n ay Night
ight Fever Kabbalat Shabbat Service
followed by a deluxe family Shabbat dinner.*
l arniVj to Your Children About God"
with Rabbi Wolpe.
uesday, Oct. 26, may well go
down as one of the more impor-
tant, and bizarre, dates in the
annals of Israeli politics.
Prime Minister Ariel Sharon won a
resounding victory in the Knesset for his
plan to withdraw from the Gaza Strip
and part of the West Bank, but the vote
ended with his Likud Party in tatters
and on the verge of splitting in two,
with Finance Minister Benjamin
Netanyahu leading the rebels.
The upshot is that although Sharon
secured Knesset approval for his plan,
which includes the dismantling of 21
Jewish settlements in Gaza and four in
the northern West Bank, it's not at all
clear whether he will have the political
clout to see it through.
Backed by the opposition Labor and
Yahad parties and opposed by almost
half of the Knesset faction of his own
Likud Party, Sharon mustered 67 votes
for his disengagement plan, with 45
against and 7 abstentions.
The vote does not authorize the actual
removal of any settlements. The with-
drawal is to be carried -out in stages
beginning next year, with Cabinet
approval necessary before each move.
Still, Sharon had hoped that such a clear
margin of victory in the Knesset would
squelch demands for a national referen-
dum on the withdrawal and open up
new coalition-building possibilities. _
But Netanyahu's move against Sharon
means that his government could soon
fall; and instead of moving ahead
smoothly toward disengagement, Israel
could find itself caught up in a stormy
For four hours before the Oct. 26
vote, Netanyahu and three other leading
Likud ministers — Limor Livnat, Yisrael
Katz and Danny Naveh — closeted
themselves in a Jerusalem hotel, working
on a proposal to condition their support
for the Oct. 26 vote on a commitment
by Sharon to hold a national referendum
on disengagement. Sharon rejected the
demand out of hand, even refusing to
meet the four ministers before the vote.
He argues that referendum advocates
*$15.00 for adults, $5.00 for children.
Reservations are required.
Baby-sitting is available during Rabbi Wolpe's
4 5 .AM
Saturday morning Shabbat e rv ices.
Rabbi Wolpe will deliver the sermon
followed by a complimentary congregational
lunch sponsored by the Laker family.
Rabbi Wolpe presents "Making Ldsitaltigli
Baby-sitting is available during
Rabbi Wolpe's discussion.
We are pleased to welcome
world-renowned author and
orator Rabbi David Wolpe of
Temple Sinai in Los Angeles for
a weekend of inspirational learning and spiritual
growth. Rabbi Wolpe is the author of several
books including Making Loss Matter: Creating
Meaning hi Difficult Times; Teaching Your Children
About God: A Modern Jewish Approach; Why Be
Jewish? and his new book Floating Takes Faith:
Ancient Wisdom for a Modern World.
Please contact the synagogue office at 248/357-5544
to make your reservations for Friday night dinner. If you
have any questions, please contact Tobye Bello,-
Program Director at 248/357-5544.
TOUGH VICTORY .on page 22
Congregation Shaarey Zedek
27375 Bell Road
Southfield, MI 48034