A short time after the withdrawal from Gaza, quiet reigned over the country, and the voices of opponents to the disengagement have been silenced. They have disappeared from the television screens, pushed to the margins of the news, to the last pages of the newspapers. Their words and calls have been changed with fresher, more updated news.
But Knesset Member Ronny Brison (Shinui), who was once religious, says that the calm is elusive, and describes religious-nationalist public as "Ortho-fascists," warning that they intend on trying to take over the state.
"I'm not optimistic about this quiet after the disengagement," said Brison, who has spent years tracking and analyzing the national-religious public. "The truth is that I am extremely worried, because this is a bogus quiet. It's very cozy for us to look on the surface and see that it is all calm, but we have no idea what forces are operating underneath the surface. I'm pessimistic because the sector knows how to educate and mobilize its youth, so at the end what you get is active and prolonged activity. I see it happening, and it worries me."
"I'm very worried about the powerful energies that have been released during the disengagement. These forces, together with the Zionist-nationalist-religious ideology, create a real potential risk to the future of Israel as a democratic and liberal state."
"If there's someone who really wants to impose a Halacha (Jewish religious law), fundamentalist based state on us, it's not the Haridim (ultra-Orthodox), but the national-religious camp. The Ultra-Orthodox want an udder for themselves only. The national religious, who I describe as Ortho-fascist nationalism, wants the entire cow."
"There is world view which is not only fascist in that it places the state as a supreme and independent entity in its world view, but it also grants the state a holy transcendental status and connects it directly to God. It also happens here, in Israel. The most fitting description for that ideology is Ortho-fascism. It's a combination of Orthodoxy, together with a view that sees the state as a separate and special entity. These things to together with us, and we get something exceptional in its extremism. It creates an extremist religious model which is not at all willing to accept the possibility that this state won't be run according to the Torah of Israel. Therefore, after the crisis of the public, which was born after the disengagement, we could be heading to that direction. We can now see how these forces are getting organized ahead of this struggle," said Brison.
Brison actually warns of an ideological takeover of pure fascism over the national-religious camp.
"From what I have seen recently, these energies which were released with the disengagement will be directed at trying to takeover every sector possible in the state and the judicial system, from the army, to the High Court, from the Knesset to government offices. Their basic view today is that whoever failed in the settlements did so because he didn't settle the hearts properly. In other words, these energies will be exploited to turn the state from a democratic-pluralist state to a Halacha-based fundamentalist state, a place where God won't have to be ashamed to have his throne touch the ground."
"After all, today the state is flawed from their perspective: There is the nation of Israel, the Land of Israel, but the Torah of Israel is lacking. And in order to change the situation, they will first start using democratic ways."