This week R’ Shmuel Shmueli asked Rabbi Sholom Dovber Volpo to stop using the name ‘Eretz Israel Shelanu’ for his new political party. Shmueli says he has been operating an organization in Israel which promotes “Shlaimus Ha’aretz” for the past 17 years, under the same name.
“To my surprise, you are acting in a way that will purposely destroy the work of the organization with the same name, that was established in (1991) by the Rebbe’s order to myself, which I have been operating since,” writes Shmueli in a letter obtained by COLlive.
Shmueli adds, “Our organization is currently sending a letter to all the members of the Knesset, and only a week later you will be sending your own similar letter under the same name of ‘Eretz Israel Shelanu’. We are known as an apolitical organization, and you are sending out letters this week as a politcal party… under the flag of ‘Eretz Israel Shelanu’.
In his letter Shmueli explains why he objects to Volpo using the name of his organization. “We spend time, money and effort on advertising and doing work under the name ‘Eretz Israel Shelanu,’ and hundreds of the readers of our publications may mistake our agenda with yours. You (Volpo’s organization) have lots of opposition in many segments of the community, and this confusion can mean a disaster for our work.”
He also sent a clear threat: “If you will not listen to my request (don’t mistake the freindly tone, to undermine the seriousness of this request) I will be forced to use my alternative options, according to Torah and the law in a case such as this, including advertising this letter in the media, and an official complaint sent to Kenesset officials, for using a confusing name.
Rabbi Volpo was not available for comment.