Outrage After Mickey Levy Calls Chareidim ‘Parasites’


deputy-finance-minister-mickey-levyIsraeli Deputy Finance Minister Mickey Levy (Yesh Atid) called the chareidi public “parasites” during a live radio interview today, exacerbating the already tense situation between the chareidi public and a government which seeks to implement universal conscription and changes in the chareidi educational system.

In an interview with Kol Berama, a chareidi radio station, Levy, a former Yerushalayim District police chief, said that the community must join the labor force because “it’s impossible to be parasites on the Israeli public. The chareidim must bear the burden… and enter the job market. It is impossible to continue to be carried on the shoulders of the Israeli taxpayer.”

Levy immediately apologized and retracted his remark, and said that “you are equal citizens, [and must] be obligated with responsibilities” instead of “continuing to live off those… who serve their country.”

MK Eli Yishai of Shas immediately denounced Levy’s remarks, likening them to statements made in 1942 Germany. “If similar statements, such as the deputy minister said, were spoken about the Jewish community by a parliament member in another country, that country would be shocked, and rightly so.”

Yishai said that such conduct “legitimized and encourages further harm to the chareidi public… elsewhere in the world this behavior and conduct is called anti-Semitism.”

Shas MK David Azoulay said Levy’s comment grew out of the “hateful environment” in which he operates. “In his party, inciting against the ultra-Orthodox public is considered a good way of producing headlines and gaining exposure,” said Azoulay.

Levy later repeated his apology in the Knesset.

Read more at Times of Israel.

{Matzav.com Israel}


  1. Come on. You all new what he meant. He was making a valid point. Lets not take it out of context. Anyways he apologized for the poor choice of words.

  2. I listened to the original interview and also saw Levi’s apology in the Knesset. How much more does he need to do? He used the wrong word and,in context, it wasn’t as bad as it is made to sound. To call him a Nazi is going too far.

  3. If we are going to ever have influence over non religious Jews…we must do so far from depending from their “generosity” and dependency.

  4. As a wife of a kollel yungerman living in Israel for the past 40 years, I cannot understand why the frum MK’s don’t answer with the justified explanations which describe the reality of the situation in this country. I once heard Rav Mordechai Neugershal, many years ago, present a list of statistics which showed how much money the chareidim put out on taxes, etc. and what services and funding are given in return. He showed how grossly unbalanced the system is and how the state is actually stealing from our portion to fund their sports and stadium needs, “culture” and theatre, schools and defense issues, etc.
    We are paying VAT on every item we buy,service we hire, just like everyone else. We pay property taxes, the bituach leumi, taxes on our paychecks, just like everyone else. Why don’t they investigate and be able to say it as it is: highway robbery and lies, instead of just reacting with weeping over the insults?

    Explaining the real essence of the matter,that it is the Torah which is upholding and shielding the entire nation, understandably falls on deaf ears and much tact should be used when expressing this. However, most of them are Jews as well, and perhaps something of the truth will be absorbed into their neshamas.

  5. The Israeli Left is very amusing. Sometimes they bash the chareidim because they don’t go to the army, and sometimes they bash them for not being part of the work force. What they conveniently forget is that when Ben Gurion gave draft deferments to full-time learners, he also made a law that anyone who didn’t serve is not allowed to work, either….

  6. I not wondering.For frum and religious people
    israel is the wrong place today.In chuz Laaretz
    the goim have more respect towards the jewish.
    Israel is become more then a antisemitic country everything angainst the religious people.And Bajit Hajehudi is playing in this game
    a shame

  7. what do you expect? this man has been brainwashed from birth, like most of the zionists, that chareidim are the dust of the earth. he probably doesn’t even know the difference between shma yisroel and the songs of the songs of a rock star

  8. this is sheker. most charedi woman work and pay income tax , plus the vat 17% for whatever they buy with their income. as well as every kollel guy gets money from their kollel and they pay vat. additionally many people donate money to israel because of the charedi run organizations. there are many charedi men who work and pay taxes. alot of lobbying done in washington on behalf of the state of israel is done by charedim and it gets the state millions of dollars. there are huge biotech companies in israel which employ chilonim which are owned by american charedim. there is probably more than what i wrote, but this is all i directly know about.

  9. To #7 Gary:

    Bingo! You’re right on the money, unfortunatly! I’ve been saying that, for years.
    In the US, they encourage learning/education/arts etc… They will even pay for child care,medicaid,wic,food stamps, if you qualify. It is truly a Medina Shel Chesed. There is no Army draft because they have enough volunteers. Israel also has enough soldiers. This forced draft of Chareidim is only to torture & antagonise them! A Government that hates Torah should NOT be called a “Jewish State”! Shame on Piron/Lipmann for showing their true colors & being useful idiots for the Torah Haters!