Rabbi Shalom Cohen, a member of the Sefardi haredi Shas Party’s Council of Torah Sages and the rosh yeshiva (dean) of Israel’s flagship Sefardi haredi yeshiva Porat Yosef, had previously likened Israelis who voted for the Zionist Orthodox HaBayit HaYehudi Party to Amalek, the biblical archenemy of the Jewish people who Jews are commanded to wipe out.
…But the festive atmosphere [at the 'coronation' of Israel's new Sefardi haredi Chief Rabbi Yitzhak Yosef] was interrupted by one of the final speakers, Rabbi Shalom Cohen, a member of [the Sefardi haredi] Shas [Party’s] Council of Torah Sages and head of Israel’s flagship Sephardi yeshiva, Porat Yosef. Addressing Deputy Religious Services Minister Eli Ben Dahan of [the Zionist Orthodox] Habayit Hayehudi [Party, who was in the room], Cohen declared, “I hope your reputation, Eli Ben Dahan, is better than just being deputy religious services minister, because that crown is like a chamber pot that infants dirty themselves in, and you’re putting it on your heads."
He also demanded that Habayit Hayehudi “do real honor to the Rishon Letzion [i.e., the Sefardi haredi chief rabbi]” by barring women from serving as heads of municipal religious councils.
[Israel's President Shimon] Peres and Rabbi Ovadia [Yosef, the most senior Sefardi haredi rabbi in the world and the father of the new Sefardi haredi chief rabbi] had already left by that point, but none of those remaining uttered a word of protest against Cohen’s remarks, even though Ben Dahan explicitly asked the other rabbis in the room to repudiate them.…
Until the most recent national elections a few months ago, Shas controlled the Religious Services Ministry.
After those elections, Cohen likened Israelis who voted for the Zionist Orthodox HaBayit HaYehudi Party to Amalek, the biblical archenemy of the Jewish people who Jews are commanded to wipe out.