MK Chikli: I Have Come to Rebel Against the Winds That Want to Put Out the Menorah

YERUSHALAYIM -
Yamina MK Amichai Chikli. (Yonatan Sindel/Flash90)

​​First-time MK Amichai Chikli (Yamina) delivered his inaugural speech in the Knesset Plenum on Tuesday and said, “Some people in this building call me a rebel. I wish I were worthy of that title. Jewish history is replete​ with rebellions. Avraham rebelled against his father’s idolatry; Moshe rebelled against Pharaoh. We are part of a small nation that, in order to preserve its identity and freedom, the oil and the menorah, was willing to dare to rebel against the mightiest empires in the history of civilization: Assyria, Babylon, Greece, Rome Germany and Britain.

“But Judaism does not demand from us only great rebellions, it also demands small, daily rebellions. Judaism demands from us congruence and correlation between words and actions, loyalty, dedication and a willingness to pay prices. I have not come here to rebel against any person or party, but to rebel against those winds that want to extinguish the menorah; winds of time that seek to blur the difference between truth and falsehood and bring with them a political culture of lying and deceit.”

Leader of the opposition MK Binyamin Netanyahu (Likud) congratulated MK Chikli and said, “You spoke here today about the values that guide you, and everyone here senses that these are not just empty words, or, as is sometimes customary in these parts, to talk pretentiously about values, put them in the drawer, and then, in practice, act in ways that contradict these values 180 degrees. In politics there is a lot of compromise. This is obvious to everyone that is sitting here. One cannot always keep every promise that is made, but it is hard to recall, and there never was, a reality in which all of the promises that had been given are broken in such capacity and in such a short time.

“You stayed true precisely to those values you specified, and these are also the values that have guided you and your adult life, as a combat soldier and later as an educator, and also in the most recent election campaign. You stayed true to exactly what you promised the voter, unlike your colleagues, who have broken every promise,” Netanyahu said.