Rabbi Mordechai Elon's statement - the first he has made since he retired from public office in 2006 following the investigation against him - indicates that he will not be the only one on trial. An entire generation, perhaps two generations, of Zionist rabbis will be tested as leaders and models of morality, faith and observing the commandments.

"Let society decide what should be investigated, the duration of my embrace of one boy or another," Elon said, evoking a world of lies, desires, dark secrets, intrigue, gossip, hypocrisy and cynical exploitation.

The indictment marks an exacerbation of the leadership crisis and the rupture between the groups and factions flimsily held together to comprise what is anachronistically called "religious Zionism." The trial will expose more absurd aspects of rabbis' obsessive preoccupation with modesty and sexuality, heterosexuality and homosexuality.

Since February 2010, when the Elon affair was exposed with a bang, many asked whether the charisma of some rabbis, like Elon, had given them too much power over the delicate souls of their students, and whether they used their power to subdue their students' will.

Yesterday Elon helped to expose the shame of a respectable group of rabbis. He told alarming stories of the involvement of the late Rabbi Mordechai Eliyahu in the affair and of Rabbi Aharon Lichtenstein, one of the two senior rabbis of the Takana forum, who was behind the moves against Elon. He said those rabbis treated the senior rabbis with contempt. "That group that runs everything used everyone. The senior rabbis served as no more than a fig leaf," he said.