Citizens of Israel are expressing their outrage after Benjamin Netanyahu, who will shortly return to the role of Prime Minister, inked a deal to create a new office for a right wing champion who will be the country’s new authority on “Jewish identity.”
Multiple Times of Israel articles are sounding the alarm after Netanyahu appointed Avi Maoz, the single elected lawmaker and leader leader of the right wing Noam Party, also a member of the Religious Zionist Party, to become the country’s first czar of Jewish identity. He will report directly to Netanyahu.
Opposing politicians have described Netanyahu’s decision as “insanity,” “racist,” and “unreal,” the outlet reported, themselves adding that Maoz holds views that are “non-pluralist” and “sexist, anti-LGBT and anti-Arab positions.”
Among his controversial policy positions, Maoz believes Israel should restrict its immigration policies to ensure the country remains thoroughly populated by religious Jews.
The person Netanyahu is shaking hands with is Avi Maoz, the leader of Noam, a radical religious party that focuses on opposing LGBTQ & women's rights. They signed a coalition deal today. Maoz will be a deputy minister at the PM office in charge of a new Jewish identity department pic.twitter.com/xEb5cNW2hY
— Barak Ravid (@BarakRavid) November 27, 2022
To achieve this, Maoz wants to limit citizenship eligibility for the grandchildren of Jews. Specifically, Maoz wants those grandchildren to themselves be practicing Jews, and not simply related to them.
This, according to Times of Israel, would impact those who lived in the former Soviet Union, which dissolved more than 20 years ago, and now seek Israeli citizenship.
Another Jewish media outlet, Haaretz, reports that Maoz has described himself as in a fight against LGBT influence, once describing those pushing LGBT culture as “deviants.”
It reports that Noam sees itself as champions of “Jewish, national and religious values,” “raises the banner of ‘Jewish identity,'” and “fights against” what it defines as “post modernism.”
Meet Avi Maoz, Israel’s top homophobe & misogynist, who is now Netanyahu's deputy minister at the PMO, in charge of a new “Jewish Identity Authority” through which he intends to fight “post-modernist values” @haaretzcom https://t.co/7wzAJf1ELj
— Noa Landau נעה לנדאו (@noa_landau) November 27, 2022
Noam warns that “foreign powers and many countries” work to undermine Jewish values, including using Israel’s education system to morph the minds of its children.
One of the most strident condemnations of Maoz’s inclusion came from Israel’s LGBT Task Force, which Harretz reports issued a statement, lamenting, “A man who called us perverts, pedophiles and freaks, who pours all his energy into an obsessive campaign to deprive us of our rights and normalize hatred of LGBT people – is not worthy of serving as a deputy minister in Israel.”
Though politics may be behind Maoz’s inclusion in Netanyahu’s government – his party will be included in Likud’s governing coalition – the Times of Israel insists that his party’s support “is not vital” to the majority.
Some may then, wonder, if Maoz’s inclusion may be a harbinger of what to expect from Netanyahu’s sixth term as Prime Minister.