Dozens of Religious Zionist rabbis urge Israel's former president, who was convicted of rape in December and who is due to be sentenced early next month, to be "strong." The "people of Zion" are waiting for the injustice to be removed and for the truth to come out, the rabbis wrote, blaming the press for Katsav's conviction.
Rabbis send letter of support to Katsav
Dozens of Religious Zionism leaders urge former president convicted of rape to 'be strong'. People of Zion waiting for injustice to be removed and truth to come out, they say
Senior Religious Zionism rabbis still believe former President Moshe Katsav, who has been convicted of rape, is innocent. A letter sent by dozens of community rabbis, yeshiva heads and educators urges Katsav to "be strong and continue to insist on the truth uncompromisingly," Ynet learned Wednesday.
The letter's signatories include Rabbi Zvi Tau, considered head of the "national" stream within Religious Zionism; Rabbi Shlomo Aviner of Beit El; and Rabbi Moshe Hager, chairman of the association of military preparatory academies.
What all the signatories have in common is that they all attribute a religious meaning to the State of Israel, as part of the salvation process, and view senior public figures as benefactors.
"To our country's former president, fear not because the truth will come out," the letter begins. "And even if it takes it's time, it will be revealed, and all those who pursue lies will be ashamed."
The rabbis slam the media, implying that the press was one of the factors which led to the trial's "false results".
"All of the people of Zion are sighing and groaning under the burden of the poisonous media, waiting for the return of pureness to our public life and hoping for the day when the injustice will be removed and the truth will come out – and then many, many people will be redeemed and rejoice with you."
'With deep appreciation'
The rabbis stress in their letter that they attitude towards the former president has not changed following his conviction of two counts of rape. "Respectfully yours and with deep appreciation as before," they conclude.
Rabbi Aviner told Ynet after Katsav's conviction, "I thought he would be acquitted and I was surprised. I don't understand the verdict. I don't any of their considerations. I saw the material, everyone can see it."
Referring to the judges, he said: "Sometimes mistakes can be made. Anyone can make a mistake. I can, you can, and the court can."