The Knesset on Wednesday voted into force an ordinance, first revealed by Ynet in February, which sets tax rates on non-kosher types of meat that are already forbidden from being imported to Israel.
Following a heated debate, twenty five MKs voted in favor, while 16 opposed the ordinance, which was initiated by MK Moshe Gafni (United Torah Judaism) and includes meats from horses, donkeys, whales, dolphins, seals, and walruses and more.
"The State of Israel has been violated as a Jewish state. Jews died in the name of god because they refused to eat non kosher meat. Here we have a discounted import of reptiles and carcasses – signed by Rabbi Gafni," said MK Arieh Eldad (National Union).
MK Ronnie Bar-On (Kadima) discarded the discussion and said mockingly, "Importing heroin to Israel was also forbidden – does that mean we need to set a tax on it? It's as though we set a tax on importing biological weapons, just in case. This ordinance is abominable."
MK Ilan Ghilon (Meretz) also made a tongue in cheek comment and asked, "I eat whatever has four legs. What if they bring a worm – without the apple? Will I not be able to import it?"
MK Meir Sheetrit (Kadima) was perplexed by the haredi factions' decision to support the ordinance. "Have you gone insane? How do you approve such a thing? I am willing to go to Rabbi Ovadia Yosef, so he can explain to me why members of his faction support such an ordinance," he said.
Meanwhile, Shas members expressed satisfaction over the heated discussion. "I am glad to know that the plenum is united in its objection to eat white meat. The days of the Messiah are here," said MK Nissim Zeev.
"I expect anyone who is here to preach us to first declare he is against eating pork. In any case, a pig is a pig, and the fate of a pig from Israel is just the same as one that is imported from abroad," said Zeev.
In a rare occurrence, MK Ahmad Tibi (United Arab List-Ta'al) Joined sides with MK Zeev and said, "our Sages of Blessed Memory did not know the difference between a pig with a foreign passport and an Israeli one."
The ordinance initiator, MK Moshe Gafni also joined his Shas counterparts and said, "It is encouraging that the Knesset is united against importing non kosher meat."