The rabbi, who is a leading Zionist Orthodox figure in Israel, also attacked his own community. "I'm saying these harsh things [about the Zionist Orthodox community] because it [the religious extremism that led to Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin's assassination by a Zionist Orthodox yeshiva student] basically doesn't start from one foolish person. It starts with insanity existing within our public, which is backed by scholars."
The late Prime Minister and Defense Minister of Israel, Yitzhak Rabin, who was assassinated 16 years ago by a Zionist Orthodox university student, Yigal Amir. Amir, who parents came from Yemen, grew up in a pro-Zionist haredi household.
Rabbi: Rabin has no heritage as leader
Head of Pre-Military Yeshiva Academy in Eli, Rabbi Eli Sadan, tells students slain PM was 'biggest political and leadership failure in Israel's history'
As Israel marked the 16th anniversary of Yitzhak Rabin's murder this month, one of Religious Zionism's most influential educators chose to strongly criticize the late prime minister.
In a conversation with his students at the Pre-Military Yeshiva Academy in Eli, Rabbi Eli Sadan said that Rabin "has no heritage as a leader and as a prime minister. He was the biggest political and leadership failure in the history of the State of Israel."
Rabbi Sadan, who is affiliated with the stream which views the State's institutions and public figures as sacred, did not ignore Rabin's good traits in the conversation.
"He was a person who put his life in danger for the revival of the State of Israel and spent less time at home with his wife and children than most people in the State of Israel, because he engaged in public affairs for the sake of the people of Israel.
"No one can take away his rights, and I am convinced that up there he is receiving all the respect he deserves for the good things he has done."
And yet, Sadan seeks to distinguish between Rabin the person and Rabin the leader and politician, who he says was "the prototype of the arrogant Mapainik, who thinks the State belongs to him, who makes every mistake possible – but that doesn't stop historians from praising and glorifying him.
He mentioned the fact that Rabin commanded the unit which opened fire at the Altalena ship, saying that "that in itself is horrific."
From the State's establishment, the rabbi moved on to the Six-Day War. "Rabin, as IDF chief of staff, collapsed on the day the war broke out, was mentally hospitalized in his home, while the person who ran the Six-Day War in practice was Ezer Weizman.
According to the rabbi, Rabin stole the credit for the war, which helped his political success later on. He also mentioned Leah Rabin's US dollar account affair and other political incidents involving the late prime minister.
'A weak leader'
The harshest attack was saved for the Oslo Accords. "The most shameful thing is that the Oslo Accords were done behind his back, which shows what a weak leader he was. And the moment he found out about it, instead of firing Shimon Peres for undermining him and stopping the entire process, he went along with is because he thought it would be worthwhile for him…
"Those agreements claimed a price of hundreds of murdered Jews, thousands of injured, bereaved families and irreversible damage to Israeli politics…
"The mud the State of Israel has sunk in international and militarily when facing Hamas and Hezbollah – it all began with the Oslo Accords, which were the worst crime ever committed by a government in Israel against its people.
"People cried out 1,000 times, 'Don't give them guns,' and Rabin said frivolously, "What's the problem? If they misbehave I'll take them back." A leader who speaks that way does not deserve to be a leader."
Despite his strong criticism against the former prime minister, Sadan stresses, "This doesn't take away his rights, that none of us have… These are great rights, but his erroneous spiritual world led him to dark and corrupt places."
Crazy weeds, backed by rabbis
The second part of the lesson was dedicated to the spiritual sources of the prime minister's murderer and to internal criticism against Religious Zionist rabbis.
Referring to Yigal Amir, Sadan said, "They should check very well which high school yeshiva and hesder yeshiva this person studied in, and then where he studied Torah during his university studies. You'll see that one common thread runs between these three elements – one studies Talmud and Halacha there but no religion, and definitely nothing about current problems."
Rabbi Sadan explained that he was criticizing the religious public because Yigal Amir and Baruch Goldstein did not act in a vacuum.
"I'm saying these harsh things because it basically doesn't start from one foolish person. It starts with insanity existing within our public, which is backed by scholars," he said.