Israeli Rabbi declares Tsunami was "punishment for pullout"
- Tuesday 01 February 2005
Rabbi: Tsunami punishment for pullout
Last month's Asian tsunami disaster was a form of divine retribution for the
world's support of the planned pullout of settlers from the Gaza Strip, a
former chief rabbi of Israel has said.
"The all powerful one was angry with the nations that did not help Israel,
which wanted an evacuation, a disengagement [from Gaza] ... and this
provoked the earth to shake," Mordechai Eliahu said in a religious
publication distributed on Monday in thousands of synagogues throughout
The top-selling Yediot Ahronoth said the rabbi was guilty of "extreme
stupidity" with his comments.
Right-wing rabbis have been among the instigators of the opposition to the
plan by Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon to pull troops and settlers out
of the Gaza Strip by the end of the year.
The number of people presumed dead in last month's tsunamis rose to more
than 286,000 on Monday when Indonesian authorities announcing a further
increase in the number of dead and missing.