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Update: Mizrachi Condemns and Leichter Defends – Chabad Rabbis Telsner and C.Z. Groner Join Anti-Zionists in Protest

March 12, 2014 – 9:50 am67 Comments

From the editor:

protest1 Updates below the original article:

We apologise for the small size of the picture and reproduce the information here:

“Communal Tefillah Gathering: Melbourne Rabonim join the call of Gedolei Yisroel in Eretz Yisroel, America and Europe who have declared that we in Chutz la’aretz must show solidarity with our embattled brethren  in Eretz Yisroel regarding the proposed new law threatening imprisonment of Yeshiva students who refuse as a matter of religious principle to be conscripted into the military”

Seven Melbourne rabbis have signed this poster While three are non- or anti-Zionist Haredim, two are at the apex of the Chabad rabbinate in Australia, Rabbis Zvi Telsner and Chaim Zvi Groner.

Their participation in this protest calls into question Chabad’s (and its supporters’) insistence in the pages of the AJN that Chabad rabbis are philosophically in tune with the majority of Australian Jews (80% of whom are Zionist) and are therefore perfectly suited to lead Zionist, Modern Orthodox congregations.

Rabbi James Kennard identified this philosophical gulf a couple of weeks ago in the AJN and was roundly castigated by for his assertions by Chabad members and supporters.

***

From Ian Waller SC, President of Mizrachi:

STATEMENT CONCERNING THE COMMUNAL PRAYER RALLY

This afternoon a “Communal Tefillah Gathering” has been arranged in protest against a law passed yesterday by the Knesset that will end the blanket exemption of the Haredi community from national service.

A poster signed by leading Rabbis from the Adass, Yeshivah, Beth HaTalmud and Heichal HaTorah communities calls upon men, women and children to participate in this public gathering.

The Mizrachi Organisation deeply regrets that such a public rally has been called.
It is a matter of great concern that members of the Melbourne Jewish community have decided to publicly protest against a law of the State of Israel, especially one that recognises that it is the duty of all able-bodied adults to share the responsibility of protecting and defending the State of Israel and all of its inhabitants.

Legitimate dissent and debate should not be stifled. However, a public rally in Melbourne, which by its nature has been designed to attract the attention of the general community and the media, portrays those who organise and support it not merely as critics but as opponents of the State of Israel.

Ian Waller SC

President
Mizrachi Organisation

***

Response from Jacob (Ya’acov) Leichter of Atzeres Tefillah:

Dear valued member of the Melbourne Jewish Community!
Thank you for your participation in the crucial Prayer service today.
Whilst the service was a huge success, with the participation of approximately 1000 men, women and children, from all stripes of the Orthodox community, including the majority of its Rabbis, it is very distressing to note the Statement from the Mizrachi expressing regret about the service.
It is noteworthy to reiterate that this Service was called for by the leading Rabbis of our community. Rabbis who command huge respect and admiration not just here in Melbourne, but worldwide. Yet these aforementioned illustrious Rabbis were not acting alone. They were but one more link in the golden chain that began in Israel and continued in the United States, as well as in other Jewish communities around the world.
In light of the above, it is most distressing to note the Statement released this afternoon. Mr. Waller on behalf of the Mizrachi expresses ‘deep regret’, amongst other things. Unfortunately they are incorrect on numerous counts.
Mizrachi’s staement incorrectly refers to the Service as a ‘Protest’. This is false. Had they been there they would have been pleasantly surprised to observe that there were no speeches, no placards and nobody shouting any words of protest whatsoever. There were only prayers to Hashem. The only time Eretz Yisrael was mentioned was when we all begged Hashem “VeTechezena Eineinu BeShivcha L’Tzion BeRachamim”.
Furthermore, what to Mizrachi is ‘a matter of great concern’, was nothing of the sort to the Honourable Chief Rabbis of Israel, as mentioned in our previous email. They had no compunctions in attending the massive prayer service in Jerusalem, which was much more public that that held today which was held in a Synagogue. The Jerusalem service was held outdoors and attended by over 600,000 people.
Whilst Mizrachi is held in high regard, they surely cannot argue that such a service is wrong or ‘regrettable’ when the rabbinical leaders of Israel clearly disagree. As someone who has deep respect for Rabbi Lau senior (whom I had the honour of meeting when he visited our shores some years ago), I feel that an apology is due to him and the current Chief Rabbis. Can any of us truly and honestly say that we know better than the Chief Rabbis of Israel? I, for one, cannot.
Let us remember that this evil decree only happened due to the insistence of the anti-Torah, anti-Yiddishkeit MK Yair Lapid who threatened to bring down the Government if he didn’t get his way.
Many people will remember a rally which took place in Melbourne a few years ago – commencing from Ohel Devorah, whose Rabbi also called for today’s Service – in support of those poor souls expelled from Gush Katif (which I proudly attended). Link: Hundreds of Jews in Melbourne participated in a Gush Katif solidarity rally held last night.  Strangely there was no condemnation from the Mizrachi at the time. This despite it being a protest held in the streets of Melbourne which attracted the press and despite it being directly targeted against the State of Israel and its Prime Minister. Very unlike today’s Service.
Whilst the vast majority of replies to our original email were positive and supportive , there were a small number of people who replied negatively. Some argued that people have the right to analyse each situation on its own merits, and that we ‘should think for ourselves’. We, however, as observant Jews, have a biblical commandement to obey the words of our Rabbis (Devarim 17). And our Rabbis, and the Rabbis of the vast majority Orthodox world have spoken, and spoken loudly. Not only with words but with their very actions. What would the Jewish world look like if every man decided such crucial matters on their own? Would we still be a nation?
We will end this email with a video of the holy Lubavitcher Rebbe discussing this very subject, which will explain how very wrong this decree is, and that forcing Yeshiva students away from their studies will in fact have the opposite of the intended effect: The Rebbe on serving in the IDF.
Signed with love for every Jew,
Kind regards,
Jacob (Ya’acov) Leichter
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67 Comments »

  • David Langsam says:

    I was wondering if this would ever be made public.

    About two years ago I was speaking with a friend who is very close to the Lubavitche movement and she assured me that internally the ultra-orthodox overwhelmingly still reject Israel as an abomination against the return of the Moshiach, who apparently wasn’t Mr Sneerson from Brooklyn after all.

    But the community has a tacit agreement to appear pro-Zionist in public. I’m sure there must be some sort of financial/power/greed incentive behind this deal – possibly funding or support of some sort, but I am told it is all very much under the radar.

    I haven’t been able to get any closer, so I have no reliable evidence other than a couple of independent reports that give similar observations.

    One comment was that in the main, the question of Israel comes after more important issues like clothing, kashrut and internal family gossip.

  • Joe in Australia says:

    Surely an anti-Zionist is someone who opposes the Jewish State, not somebody who defends the rights of conscientious objectors. Real anti-Zionists don’t go in for petitions and protests, because they don’t accept that people should negotiate with the Israeli government.

  • David Langsam says:

    Joe, I think ‘anti-Zionists’ come in all shapes and sizes.
    Some are primarily concerned with the treatment of Palestinians and absence of a two-state resolution; there are still some old-fashioned Bundists who believe Jews should be free everywhere; and some just want a single secular democratic state between the Jordan and Mediterranean.
    I don’t think any actually want all the Jews in Israel to pack up and go back to Russia, Poland, Brooklyn, Capetown and Double Bay.

  • Mordy Gore says:

    Without getting into the debate of whether Chabad is an anti-zionist organisation or not, can someone please explain how is refusal to be conscripted into the military as a matter of religious principle differ from that which is based on political/conscientious principle.

    Many Israeli men and women quoted the latter reason in recent years, yet I can’t recall that they were labelled anti-zionists. On the contrary – many were hailed as carrying the flag of exercising democratic and humanistic principles.

    True, some were imprisoned for a brief period of time but many became ‘minor celebrities’ and activists in organisations that cause REAL damage to Israel and the Jewish people alike, both at home and abroad (e.g. breaking the silence, b’tselem and a plethora of others of the same ilk).

    From that perspective, I don’t have a problem with messrs Telsner and Groner adding their voices to the concern regarding the proposed law.

  • Larry Stillman says:

    Trying to get Chabad to admit they are politically anti-zionist but Machiavellian when it comes to Israeli politics and as crazily nationalist as the rest is like trying to build a fence with raw eggs.

    All the while, they will take advantage with all sorts of casuistry to justify their very particular version of god’s will to suit the situation.

  • David Langsam says:

    Mordy, Judaism has no proscription of war, the bible is littered with them, despite a commandment against killing. The ultras have no problems throwing rocks at cars on Shabbat.
    So it is a bit hard to know where Judaism says that devotees can’t join the army. It’s nonsense, as usual.

  • Yaron says:

    Mordy,
    It is not a question of being a conscientious objector or not. The problem is someone who refuses to be active participants in the state.

    The conscientious objectors from the secular world are still active participants in Israeli society.

    The Haredi world demands money for their yeshivas and to support them, a large portion of their population does not pay taxes or participate in civil society, except to vote for their political parties that support their narrow interests.

    But this is not the main issue. The main issue is that there are many of the Haredi institutions (and Habad is included here) who demand money from the wider community to support their communal structures and are fundamentally out of step with the mainstream views.
    Why should I be supporting an organisation that wants to fundamentally undermine the State of Israel?

  • Joel says:

    I agree fully with Joe.

    Let’s NOT read into this Prayer event more than what it is. This is NOT an anti – Israel or anti- Zionist rally/ protest, but rather a protest by a segment of the community aligning with the politics of a particular group of parties in Israel

    Would anyone seriously contend that Alan Jones & all the truckies who protested against the Gillard Government and its laws around the introduction of the Carbon Tax as being Anti – Aussie’ ; ‘Un- Australian’.

  • Steven says:

    “Mr Sneerson” – bit offensive to me. The Rebbe spent his life helping other Jews to the best of his ability, reportedly sleeping a couple of hours a night and seeing people until the early hours of the morning and starting again a few hours later. If people want to be stupid and do ridiculous things, I don’t see how it’s the Rebbe’s fault.

  • Bobby Basrah says:

    One doesn’t need to be an anti-zionist to be upset about the govt legislating to jailing of Yeshiva students.

    The fact is that this issue has achieved the unbelievable to unite the entire Chareidi/Chassidc world – like none other previously. (And even bring many leaders (and supporters) of the Dati Leumi sector into the fold.)

    Chabad rabbis and batei din in Israel and the USA issued statements of support for these rallies.

  • Shalom says:

    Hat to ruin fanfare but Chabad Rabbis serve in the army in many capacities, this is not an anti zionistic rally rather a political one about a policy to force inscription of yeshiva boys and girls which has nothing to do with being zionistic or not. It would be like calling the Greens anti australian for protesting australian law but hey, for galus website will keep the ratings up, must be a slow day in melbourne…

  • Sol Salbe says:

    Just a gentle reminder to the editor, that the otherwise excellent Gen08 survey’s definition of Zionism was so broad that I was counted as one. I’m a reasonably strongly committed post Zionist and I had no choice but to answer in a way that would count me the same as a card-carrying Zionist. [I believe in honestly answering surveys.] So I suspect there many more on the observant side whose views are not Zionist but were counted in the survey as such. That 80 per cent figure should be treated gingerly.

  • Joe in Australia says:

    David, halacha understands the wars in the Bible to be either (a) illegitimate or (b) instituted on the command of a prophet or divinely-ordained king. And even then, the Bible itself says that soldiers can leave the army for essentially any reason at all. You might have more luck with post-Biblical sources that discuss rules for mutual self defense, but I think your whole premise is wrong: this is what they believe, and you’re not going to be able to argue them out of it.

  • David Langsam says:

    Joel, it is a little tangential, but in fact the Alan Jones/Tony Abbott rally you refer to included known Holocaust deniers and anti-Semites from the League of Rights and the Citizens Electoral Council, barracking with the Climate Change deniers including one who called for the murder of our elected Prime Minister.
    The signs not only said “Ditch the Witch” there was another one reading “Kill the Bitch” and Abbott standing in front of it sent a chill down my spine reminiscent of Netanyahu standing in front of banners depicting Yitzchak Rabin in Gestapo uniform.
    Was that un-Australian or anti-Australian? Yes, unequivocally.
    Criticism of Australia is not un-Australian, but that hysterical call for blood certainly was.
    Criticism of Israel is not anti-Zionism. Anti-Zionism is an opposition to the existence of a State of Israel. It’s a bit late for that.
    But if one supports a secular democratic state between the Jordan and Mediterranean, that state might not be a majority “Jewish” state (whatever that means), and hence that could be considered anti-Zionist, I suppose. Then it starts to get difficult and requires an evening of good food and drink to discuss it more thoroughly.

  • Jimbo says:

    What more do we need as proof that the fact the the Zionist Chief Rabbis of Israel attended the Israeli protest?

  • Jimbo says:

    I’m proud of Rabbis Telsner and Groner.

    They are good Lubavitcher chassidim, carrying on the words of their great leader.

    The Rebbe said, many times, that those studying Torah do NO LESS than those in the army to protect the lives of the people.

  • David Langsam says:

    Jimbo, given the absence of a god, if there was a war, I’ll call the IDF any day, ahead of yeshiva bochers reading in a shteibel.
    And Joe in Oz, you are right.

  • Sunshine says:

    All the praying? These are thugs who throw rocks (a crime that sees Palestinian children jailed), don’t work, steal, commit fraud and abuse and live off a country at the expense of real zionista while they damn it.

    They don’t accept homosexuals and look down on anyone who does not believe what they do.

    They demean women and their extreme cult like rules such as “Shabbat mobiles” risk damaging their youth.

    They place abusers in positions of power and oust those who dare question.

    No wonder all their prayers amount to nothing and antsitian is in the rise

  • Yaron says:

    1. The Chief Rabbis are not necessarily Zionist, just as many of the Haredim and Muslims sitting in the Knesset are also anti and non Zionists.

    2. Comparing the refusal to serve in the army to being against Abbott/Gillard it is an incorrect comparison. We are not discussing a rally against government policy. This is an effort to undermine the entire state. As proof of this all we have to do is look at the statements of the opponents of the law who have threatened to bring down the state.
    By associating with this campaign Habad has linked themselves to a movement that wants to fundamentally harm the state unless the state allows them to bankrupt the state with their welfare.
    This is anti-Zionist at its essence, and when the Lubavitch leadership joined this movement (and I assume they are not the only ones that will be there at the rally) they place their movement firmly in the anti-Zionist camp.
    Then presumably they will be approaching the Zionist majority in Melbourne to ask for money for their educational institutions that will pass on these ideals to our children.

  • Mordy Gore says:

    David, firstly, there is no commandment against killing. The actual commandment is against premeditated murder and there is a big difference between the two. Further, Judaism actually mandates killing a person who is coming to kill you.

    Secondly, although you will not find any directive/commandment that devotees shouldn’t serve in the army, there are clear instructions to release those who are soft-hearted or fearful from participating in combat, lest their emotions will adversely affect their peers.

    I am not an advocate for Chabad but I have deep respect to the late Rabbi Schneerson who was without a doubt a spiritual giant in our generation and as Jimbo mentioned on this thread before, those who are great Torah scholars perform NO LESS an important role in defending the Jewish people than those in the army. Both are required to do their duty.

  • Yaron says:

    Mordy Gore
    The opt out clauses work only for offensive wars. In defensive wars everyone has to go out to fight.
    In a modern army we cannot assume that we can raise an army on a moments notice as in biblical times, therefore it would be a halachic requirement for everyone in Israel to at least go through the basic training that would prepare them for an eventuality that they would be halachically required to fight.
    Since the halacha demands that they go and fight, therefore the halacha would view their learning as being significantly less than those in the army (and in all likelihood counterproductive).
    If ignoring one’s national responsibility is what it means to be Orthodox, then Orthodoxy has no place in Judaism.

  • Seraphya says:

    This is radically different than the fringe phenomenon of refusing to serve in the occupied territories. The left doesn’t have tens of thousands of people on the street demanding that the state not only not jail the refusers but keep paying them stipends.

    The MoD and the IDF actually have some tolerance of true conscientious objectors who are real pacifists who don’t believe in armies in general (in the there is actually a mention of the case . For a state to run a working conscription based military, which for Israel is a necessity, selective objection cannot be allowed. The IDF cannot function if half the soldiers are refusing to serve in the West Bank and half the soldiers refuse to be part of missions that involve dismantling illegal settlements. Religion cannot be used as an excuse to not preform military service ( see .

    However for Haredim there isn’t even the claim of conscientious objection to war and armies; it just isn’t for them. Because they were born Haredi, they think that someone else can do the fighting while they sit and learn Torah. This isn’t ‘conscientious objection’, this is “objection to me being the one who has to do the fighting”. They don’t object to the war of self-defense, they object to being included in those in uniform. There is no precedent for this in the legal history of the rights of conscientious objectors.

    Their rhetoric on this issue is so flimsy, I doubt they really believe it. ( watch here to see what it is, I won’t repeat it https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fsADqkXyALk ) Besides the selective quoting of the book of Shmuel, where he ignored that David actively fought in such examples as killing Goliath to being an officer leading tens of thousands to war (1 Sam 18:7), the central point of the argument makes no sense. Comparing those who claim to do nothing but study torah to chefs because they provide spiritual sustenance just as chefs provide physical sustenance to the army doesn’t in any way yield the conclusion that all haredim should be exempt from military service.

    The military figures out where to allocate manpower according to the needs of the army. The army first works out what roles are required based on the logistical and administrative needs to support the specific fighting force capabilities they are attempting to uphold. The army then decides how many people it needs in each of those roles. Then based on the needs of the army and your individual skills and abilities along with some attention to your preferences and personal needs (eg if you have a sick parent you may be located in a place close to home so you can care for them, which may mean that you aren’t placed in a front line combat position) the army places you into a role.

    What Chabad seem to be claiming is that because they like learning torah, that half of the nation should be allowed to regardless of the actual needs of the army. That would be like half the country who like cooking saying “I don’t really care what the army needs, I like to cook therefore the army should let me be a chef”. The army doesn’t need half of it force to be chefs! Its actually a step further though, the chefs in the military wear uniforms and serve in the army and also go through basic training. They want to be civilian chefs because they like cooking in this analogy. While someone might like cooking and baking creatively on their own time, when they are in the army a chef has to provide the best possible meal to the soldiers with the limited resource they have. They have to put their talents and energy into making the army stronger by giving of themselves to feed the soldiers to keep them in a state of health and combat readiness. I don’t know how they can claim that a yeshiva in a far away place is providing nourishment to the soldiers, even of a spiritual kind. The army has chaplains, the IDF even have both the education corps and the military rabbinate looking after the morale and spiritual needs of the soldiers.

    Its actually worse than just saying my own preferences not to serve in the IDF are more important than the actual needs of the IDF. It is saying my sector of society, because of how we happened to be born into the community we did, doesn’t need to serve the same way everyone else does. There may be some excellent soldiers in the Haredi sector, from marksman and pilots to brilliant tacticians, but they won’t serve in those roles because half of the pool of recruits want to be ‘civilian chefs’. Why do they think because of their birth into a Haredi family that they should be a mediocre yeshiva bochur rather than the best pilot in the world?

  • Joel says:

    David and Yaron,

    You r correct. My analogy was wrong. It’s actually far more acute. This group held a prayer vigil (see the video and photos before claiming it to be a ‘protest’) due to laws to impact them only.

    Finally after years of successive Zionist governments both right and left wing, starting with Mapam, Herut, Labour and Likkud, they have ALL woken up to the consequences of allowing for charedi exemption from the army and by extension the workforce. To then expect NO reaction is absurd. In essence what we are all watching is the natural process of dealing with extreme change. I think over time you will see many Charedim engage successfully in the army and get jobs. I think with the implementation of these new laws that over time much of the Anti Zionist vitriol will disapate.

    I remember the outrage of the Howard ‘work for the dole’ scheme where a group was targeted to get them out of ‘the system’. After all the protesting and gnashing of teeth life moved on, the scheme was implemented successfully. Life moves on and people adapt….

    Yes, many at the Prayer vigil are against Zionism but these Prayer gatherings were a way of dealing with a new (and politically damaging) law specifically meant for them. These Prayer vigils were carefully ochestrated and were not designed to protest what many of them believe to be the illegitimate claim of Zionist organisations to speaking behalf of them as Jews.

    Let’s consider these Prayer gatherings for what they are and not what you would like them to have been. I assure you that had stones been hurled and bins set alight my discussion points would not be the same as those above.

  • Yaron says:

    Joel, I will make this easy for you.

    The protests about work choices/ work for the dole were against the Howard government and wanted a change of government.
    The current protests in Israel are against the concept of the Zionist state and aim to destroy the state.

    When people protested against Howard they disliked the legislation but even their rhetoric was not ‘lets wreck the joint’. They were still willing to participate in civil society.
    The Israeli protesters want to destroy the state, other educational institutions and anything else that stands in the way of their goal of NOT participating in civil society.

    See a slight difference.

  • Joel says:

    Yaron

    As much as I don’t agree with their lifestyle and their distinct lack of respect for the State, Zionism or in fact anyone who isn’t part of their club, I find that hysteria is NOT the right approach and your definition of the Prayer meetings they conducted to be inflammatory. I know that they want to live outside of the norms of Israeli society which is what the laws are pegging back…but I think you are somewhat blinded with hate

    “The current protests in Israel are against the concept of the Zionist state and aim to DESTROY the state.”

    “The Israeli protesters want to DESTROY the state, other educational institutions and anything else that stands in the way of their goal of NOT participating in civil society.”

  • david segal says:

    an email i received today:

    Dear valued member of the Melbourne Jewish Community!

    Please take note of the attached Flyer, signed by Melbourne’s leading Rabbis, urging everybody, men, women and children to attend a crucial prayer session, on Thursday, (Fast of Esther), at 6:30pm SHARP. This will take place at the Adass-Gutnick Hall, 12 Glen Eira Avenue, Ripponlea.

    Tefilat Mincha will be followed by Avinu Malkeinu and 4 perakim of Tehillim, and concluding with the recitation of Shema Yisrael.

    As you will no doubt be aware, similar prayer rallies have taken place in Jerusalem and Manhattan in the past fortnight, attended by many hundreds of thousands of our fellow Jews, and led by the leading Rabbis of our generation.

    This communal prayer is to beseech the Almighty to repel the harsh decree of the Israeli government which intends to force the pure Yeshiva students of Israel to join the Israeli army, at risk of jail and fines.

    It is noteworthy to mention that the two official Chief Rabbis of the State of Israel, Rabbi David Lau (Ashkenazi) and Rabbi David Yoseph (Sephardi) both attended the abovementioned protest in Israel, together with the former Chief Rabbi of Israel, Rabbi Yisrael Meir Lau and numerous members of Knesset.

    Please click on the following link to see the current Chief Rabbi’s views on forced draft for Yeshiva students: http://www.ynetnews.com/articles/0,7340,L-4409081,00.html

    Attached also is the letter signed by all major Chabad Rabbis in Israel, which quote the words of the Holy Lubavitcher Rebbe, who stated clearly that without question yeshiva students should not join the army The letter starts by quoting a letter from Igros Kodesh (Vol. 20 page 317) where the Rebbe writes that Bnei Yeshivos should not enlist in the army and that their Torah learning is what provides protection for the people in Eretz Yisroel.

    The Rabbonim then proceed to make a unique request directed to the “parents, communal activist and anyone who has the ability to assist”:

    “Save the character of Yeshivos Tomchei Tmimim so that they can continue to exist and grow according to the wishes and desires of our Holy Rebbeim.”

    We look forward to your attendance. Please forward this email to whomever you believe would like to attend.

    Kind regards,

    Jacob (Ya’acov) Leichter
    2 Attachments

  • TheSadducee says:

    “The Rebbe said, many times, that those studying Torah do NO LESS than those in the army to protect the lives of the people.”

    which suggests that the rebbe was any and/or all of the following;

    1. delusional
    2. disingenuous
    3. foolish

    Why? Because it didn’t work in the Shoah and it ain’t gonna work in Israel or any other place either.

    That sort of stuff is pietistic nonsense of the highest order – rabbis say stuff all the time and they are completely and utterly wrong – look at R. Akiba supporting Bar Koziba in that revolt – he was completely wrong about the messianism, much as some are about R. Scheerson.

  • Frankel says:

    I cannot believe the moderators allow such blasphemous comments about the Rebbe.

    I am shocked and disgusted.

  • Frankel says:

    TOM!

    You clearly don’t belong to Chabad if you don’t agree with the words of the Rebbe.

    Have some self respect and move to Mizrachi.

  • David Langsam says:

    Well said, The Sadducee

  • David Langsam says:

    Seraphya, I have just read your excellent and detailed post.
    Yasher Koach!

  • Sunshine says:

    Then let them live elsewhere

    They tape and pillage and pretend to be religious in order to get away with lazy slovenly behaviour

    Don’t like the rules, go suck another country dry.

    In fact Iran or Iraq may be very happy to take them given they are against the state thy expect to support them whilst they use fairy tales to justify the disgrace they have become

  • david segal says:

    Shalom

    “Chabad Rabbis serve in the army in many capacities”.

    Chabad Rabbis or Chabad “not” rabbis, don’t serve in the army as שירות חובה, but they work in the army as צבא קבע

  • dovid segal says:

    STATEMENT CONCERNING THE COMMUNAL PRAYER RALLY

    This afternoon a “Communal Tefillah Gathering” has been arranged in protest against a law passed yesterday by the Knesset that will end the blanket exemption of the Haredi community from national service.

    A poster signed by leading Rabbis from the Adass, Yeshivah, Beth HaTalmud and Heichal HaTorah communities calls upon men, women and children to participate in this public gathering.

    The Mizrachi Organisation deeply regrets that such a public rally has been called.
    It is a matter of great concern that members of the Melbourne Jewish community have decided to publicly protest against a law of the State of Israel, especially one that recognises that it is the duty of all able-bodied adults to share the responsibility of protecting and defending the State of Israel and all of its inhabitants.

    Legitimate dissent and debate should not be stifled. However, a public rally in Melbourne, which by its nature has been designed to attract the attention of the general community and the media, portrays those who organise and support it not merely as critics but as opponents of the State of Israel.

    Ian Waller SC

    President
    Mizrachi Organisation

  • Philip Mendes says:

    Its an interesting debate. On the one hand I suspect they will be more of a hindrance than a help to the army. On the other hand, many secular Israelis from across the political spectrum feel that these people are a sponge on the country – having large families, not working or attempting to get an education or training that will lead to employment, and expecting the state to support them via welfare payments. They feel that this measure will encourage the ultra-orthodox to contribute something to the country. Protests within or outside Israel miss the point. If this community don’t want to be part of Israel then they are free to leave just like any other Israelis who don’t want to serve in the army, or don’t like the state or Zionist philosophy. They can join Ilan Pappe in Exeter.

  • Seraphya says:

    “blasphemous comments about the Rebbe.” – frankel

    I don’t understand, Blasphemy is usually about God. Is your Rebbe a god? a demi-God? part of the God-head? Is the rebbe like Jesus? In the vein of “The Rebbe is not something different from God – the Rebbe is a part of God.” or There is no clear place where the Rebbe ends and God begins.”

    or maybe you are saying that your Rebbe is somehow better than all the other Rabbis ever and he is the only true Messiah so we can’t say anything bad about him, like Mohammad?

    Why shouldn’t people be able to criticize the view of the dead leader of a small sect in the Jewish community?

  • Yaron says:

    Joel,
    I stand by every comment that I have made, but I am too lazy to dig up the articles I have read where Haredim are quoted as saying that they will take a wrecking ball to the state if the law passes.
    This is anti-Zionism.

    Frankel,
    “I cannot believe the moderators allow such blasphemous comments about the Rebbe.”
    Blasphemy? Really? We are talking of a human not a deity. He may have had many positive qualities but he also had many flaws.

    You then say “You clearly don’t belong to Chabad if you don’t agree with the words of the Rebbe.”
    Now there is infallibility. You have now made him into a Pope.

    You are desecrating your own Rebbes name by attaching foreign concepts to his personality.

  • Chareidi says:

    I don’t remember Mizrachi making the same claim during the anti Gaza disengagement demonstrations a number of years back.

  • Josh says:

    In 1956, fedayeen terrorists entered the Kfar Chabad synagogue during evening prayers and started shooting indiscriminately. Five children and one teacher were murdered, another ten injured. Torah study didn’t exactly provide adequate protection.

    BTW Didn’t Mulik Gurevitch serve in the IDF? Guess that he isn’t a good Jew.

  • Bobby Basrah says:

    Seraphya says:

    Why shouldn’t people be able to criticize the view of the dead leader of a small sect in the Jewish community?

    >>

    And why shouldn’t people be able to criticise (or pray for the change of the actions of) anti-Torah politicians?

  • tom says:

    On Facebook
    David Werdiger
    4 hrs ·
    It’s deeply disappointing that two local Chabad Rabbis have chosen to endorse the prayer gathering this afternoon to protest proposed changes to the law in Israel affecting army service for Haredim. As a committed member of the Chabad community, let me make it very clear that THEY DON’T SPEAK FOR ME. If you feel the same way, please like and/or share.

  • David Langsam says:

    It is good to be in agreement with Philip again – good comment!
    Seraphya, if Mr Sneerson really was the Moshiach, how come he didn’t come back and elevate us all to Jerusalem? Worse than just a false prophet, his disciples have built craven images and likenesses of his temple in Brooklyn. I mean really, a New York Tenement in Inkerman Road?
    But back to the thread, apart from those benefitting from welfare handouts and army avoidance there does seem to be a breadth of support for the measure.
    I was no fan of John Howard, but he did introduce strong firearm legislation and oversee the liberation of East Timor. I detest Netanyahu and this succession of ultra-right Israeli Governments, but this Bill cleans up 60 years of neglect.

  • Moushkie says:

    As far as I’m concerned the Rebbe has spoken. Therefore I attended last night and prayed hard.

    I hardly saw any other Lubavitchers there, though. And that disgusts me. Our Rebbe wants this. Our local Rabbis want this. Why did they not come? Were they at Carlton training?

  • naava says:

    Oh moushkie, I love you. It’s true- the biggest problem facing Chabad in Melbourne is its obsession with the Carlton Football Club.

  • Ronit says:

    Really??!!!

    Supporting their argument with a video of the Lubavitcher Rebbe dated “October 10 1967″????!!!!

    I’m speechless.

  • Joe in Australia says:

    Chareidi wote:

    I don’t remember Mizrachi making the same claim during the anti Gaza disengagement demonstrations a number of years back.

    I don’t recall any major anti-disengagement demonstrations here, but in any event you’re right: a demonstration is a sign of engagement with the political process, not withdrawal. There’s the famous story about the Brisker Rav chiding R’ Amram Blau for trying to physically block buses travelling on Shabbos: if R’ Blau had really believed that Zionists were murderers he wouldn’t have dared to do it. Similarly, the whole rationale for a public demonstration is that the government is responsive to your wishes. These Chareidim wouldn’t have marched in Tsarist Russia; they’re doing it because they’re in a country of their own.

  • dont want to say says:

    all resistance is good!

  • Ronit says:

    Actually, I take back what I wrote above; I do have a lot to say in regard just to the video. I usually like the Rebbe’s messages, but this video left me feeling sick in my gut.

    1) The Rebbe claims that the arrangement between David Hamelech & his army general Yoav, was that Yoav went out to fight the wars while David stayed at home & learnt. Ummm…. David definitely went out to fight too. That was precisely why G-d prohibited him form building the Temple because he had blood on his hands.

    Oh, and despite that the majority of his life as king of Israel he was busy fighting wars, he still managed to find the time to compose numerous poems beseeching & praising G-d. Wow! He managed to do both. Unbelievable!

    2)Multiple times the Rebbe quotes Moshe, “Shall your brothers go to war and you will sit here?” This was in response to the 2 tribes of Reuven & Gad who wanted to settle & cultivate the eastern bank of the Jordan River. Moshe made it compulsory for the 2 (&1/2) tribes to cross the Jordan with the rest of the nation and fight alongside their brothers. Yet, somehow the Rebbe takes this rhetoric and uses it to argue his point that, “Yes, our brother shall go to war and we will just sit here.”

    3) The other two points are nothing to this one. The Rebbe argues that the challenge to sit & learn is greater than going to war, because a soldier goes to war & returns home “with a tank” to be commended and honoured & “receive his medal”, while the person learning is only criticised. That soldiers go to war for the honour. “Then when he comes home, his wife asks him, ‘Did you know that our neighbour came home from war with a tank, and you came home with your old Talmud…'” He talks about going to war like it’s a game. Sure, we honour our sons & daughters, because they deserve our honour, but that’s not why they do it. And that honour is nothing, NOTHING in compensation for the number of soldiers who come home physically injured or psychologically traumatised by what they saw, what they did and what they were unable to do. Many have major issues re-acclimatising into civilian life, going on to develop PTSD and other mental health problems. And this is when our sons & daughters return home, they don’t all make it home…

    But the medal makes it all worth it.

  • Raph says:

    A few points:

    Rabbi CT Groner Rabbi and Telsner have released a statement. See below.

    Philip Bliss from the Union for Progressive Judaism has been sharing the Failed Messiah hatchet job on his mailing list. It’s the usual ‘let’s bash the Orthodox and make ourselves look wonderful’ rubbish from the Reform.

    Let’s see if Dr Bliss gives Rabbis Telsner and Groner a fair right of reply and shares their response on his mailing list.

    PRESS RELEASE:

    Yeshivah Centre
    92 Hotham St, East St Kilda
    Melbourne 3183

    12 Adar Sheni 5774
    14 March 2014

    Earlier this week we were presented with a letter on which to add our signatures concerning a communal Tefilah gathering in relation to the proposed conscription laws in Israel. Unfortunately the letter also included a negative inference to the Israeli government which we deeply regret and from which we would like to emphatically disassociate ourselves.

    We, and the Yeshivah Centre, strongly and proudly support Israel. We have a heartfelt and enduring love for and commitment to Eretz Yisroel, its people and its heroic Defense Forces.
    A large number of our graduates and indeed Chabad Chassidim from Israel and around the world, serve in the Israeli Army and choose to make Aliya and live in our Holy Land.

    We have the highest regard for the bravery and sacrifice of our Israeli soldiers. Chabad chassidim, including leading activists, communal leaders and educators around the world proudly serve in the IDF. In addition, thousands of Chabad youth and adults support our soldiers on the field and in their bases on a daily basis. This week in Israel, Chabad will be delivering tens of thousands of mishloach monos to our troops throughout the land, giving up time with their own families in order to bring cheer, encouragement and hope to our forces, by celebrating with them the joy of Purim.

    The conscription issues are highly complex. We hope and pray that Jewish people around the world can come together and unite for the safety and security of Eretz Yisroel, its noble defence forces and its people.

    With heartfelt prayers for a true and lasting peace in our holyland and around the world, and for the Geulah Shlemah.
    Purim Sameach,

    Rabbi Zvi Telsner
    ​​​​​Rabbi Chaim Tzvi Groner

  • Harry says:

    Please see link to remind us of the protests and demonstrations against the decision of the Israeli Government with the support of many in the Mizrachi community. The protest March with all the orange balloons went from Ohel Devora- Chabad to the Yeshiva Center! (plus all those bumper stickers!!)

    http://aussieecho.blogspot.com.au/2005/07/gush-katif-rally-reports.html

  • david segal says:

    A Joke for Purim:

    They signed the Kol Kore” without reading the fine print.

    Earlier this week we were presented with a letter on which to add our signatures concerning a communal Tefilah gathering in relation to the proposed conscription laws in Israel. Unfortunately the letter also included a negative inference to the Israeli government which we deeply regret and from which we would like to emphatically disassociate ourselves.

    We, and the Yeshivah Centre, strongly and proudly support Israel. We have a heartfelt and enduring love for and commitment to Eretz Yisroel, its people and its heroic Defense Forces.

    A large number of our graduates and indeed Chabad Chassidim from Israel and around the world, serve in the Israeli Army and choose to make Aliya and live in our Holy Land.

    We have the highest regard for the bravery and sacrifice of our Israeli soldiers. Chabad chassidim, including leading activists, communal leaders and educators around the world proudly serve in the IDF. In addition, thousands of Chabad youth and adults support our soldiers on the field and in their bases on a daily basis. This week in Israel, Chabad will be delivering tens of thousands of mishloach monos to our troops throughout the land, giving up time with their own families in order to bring cheer, encouragement and hope to our forces, by celebrating with them the joy of Purim.
    The conscription issues are highly complex. We hope and pray that Jewish people around the world can come together and unite for the safety and security of Eretz Yisroel, its noble defence forces and its people.

    With heartfelt prayers for a true and lasting peace in our holyland and around the world, and for the Geulah Shlemah.
    Purim Sameach,

    Rabbi Zvi Telsner
    Rabbi Chaim Tzvi Groner

  • david segal says:

    if one joke is not enough, here is another one. this time from rabbi smukler:

    Dear Yeshivah – Beth Rivkah and GELC Parents,

    In light of recent communal debate and discussion, and the Tefillah gathering held in Melbourne on Taanit Esther in response to the new Israeli Military conscription laws, I wish to reiterate a few fundamental values and principles in relation to Israel, by which our school operates.

    1. The fact that Israel is in Jewish hands and under Jewish rule is a great miracle and blessing for the Jewish People.

    2. Israel needs to be protected. Every inch of the Land is holy and precious, and the lives of its inhabitants must be defended. Just as a person is obligated to make a vessel for the blessing of Parnassa – livelihood, so too we must make a natural effort for the protection and preservation of Israel with a strong and effective army. We must show the IDF our gratitude for fulfilling this vital role. We must also respect and appreciate the protection provided by those who study Torah. A number of Chabad Chassidim, including many graduates from our school, choose, with pride, to serve in the Israeli army. The Rebbe had a Tanya printed on an Army Base with both the Tzahal (IDF)and Kehos (Chabad publishing house) logos on it, side by side, for the Israeli soldiers. The Rebbe’s relationship with Israeli soldiers was one of love, care and compassion. He davened and cried for them, and overtly expressed his, and the Jewish people’s, gratitude to them.

    These principles can be readily gleaned from the Rebbe’s writings, talks and conduct.

    The conscription laws are a complex and controversial issue that affects the Jewish world, not just the Chareidi sector. It requires discussion, respect for differing opinions and viewpoints and working together to achieve the best outcome.

    In 2012 YBR Colleges organised and hosted a public discussion panel / debate on the Tal law. It was well attended by diverse sectors of the community, and displays our underlying educational principle of respectful debate and discussion about the crucial issues facing the Jewish world.

    We, as a school, will continue to educate and inculcate in our students an unshakeable love and connection to Eretz Yisrael. Just yesterday, in response to the rocket attacks on Israel, we assembled all the children throughout our school for extra Torah, Tefillah and Tzedaka in the merit that Hashem should protect all the inhabitants of Eretz Yisrael, the Israeli soldiers defending our brethren and the Jewish People around the world.

    We daven and hope that there will be true peace in Eretz Yisrael, in the Melbourne Jewish Community and around the world with the Geulah Sheleima now.

    the same joke without the fine print

  • recently on fb, this was posted –
    I fail to grasp on what grounds a significant proportion of Israeli society believes that it doesn’t have to work nor serve in the military, and expects others to carry the load; to pay them and protect them. And they demonstrate for this right. In their masses. Have I missed something?

    to which I responded – Sure you have missed something – those who dedicate their lives to learning and teaching Torah are the ones preserving our Traditions, Culture and Heritage.
    We are the only ones in this universe who in spite of endless persecutions and constant trampling upon, have retained our dignity and identity.
    We have restored our language that lay dormant – as far as the world was concerned – for centuries and revitalised it to a vibrant living functioning language. Is Greek to day anything like ancient Greek?

    And our Torah, has been in the minds and lives of the Haredi groups, a living growing generator of energy and empowerment, that has spilled over to the communities who have drifted far away from their traditions but nevertheless see themselves proudly Jewish.

    We must be honest and ask ourselves – what has enabled this vitality? Who has ensured our continuity? Has anything other than the Haredi style commitment and determination, their dogged unrelenting perseverance and blind love for Gd and His Torah been even remotely as critical in our enduring continuity?

    A civilised society is not known for its wars but for its dignity, its lofty aspirations, and its spiritual pursuits and ambitions.
    we are a nation of people who are welded together in our dedication to the Torah.

    I don’t suggest the Haredi style is perfect, in fact it is far from it, but that does not mean that it has done nothing and does nothing but drain society.

    As it is silly to suggest that anything is utterly perfect or absolutely imperfect, it is simply foolish to dismiss what Haredi style has contributed and what it represents and what it has yet to contribute.

    I am simply saying that we have missed the focus of this division and the true issue being battled over. The Haredim want, like all others in politics and in life, Power. And we the voters always suspect that people’s motivations may be tainted with less than honourable energies.
    Haredim do not want to be powerless. Do they deserve to be? Have they nothing to offer to a society that lives in a world and a civilisation that is primarily focussed on financial success and the superficial pleasure of owning things?

    Please note – I am not taking the position that since they do not accept the State of Israel because it is a secular entity – they need not contribute to its upkeep or recognise the benefits that they enjoy from the State.
    I am arguing that they do contribute, and we are being petty and foolish not to recognise their contribution and to demonise and exaggerate their shortcomings

    we need to recognise and pay tribute to the great contribution made by Haredi style commitment and sacrifice; if not we are a society that suffers very greatly from ingratitude and are destined to lose a great deal

    it’s not an option – IF YOU WISH TO STUDY TORAH – it is a duty.

    The original poster responded –
    there is no doubt in my mind that the ultra-Orthodox community has done a great deal to promote Jewish identity/continuity. And their contribution in various areas has been great. And this should be recognised. But what does this have to do with sharing the workload by serving in the military and working? And of course the ultra-Orthodox community is not the only ones to have contributed in the area of Jewish identity/continuity.

    which prompted the following response from me
    fantastic to hear you identify this, our conversation now moves away from a black and white to a more textured and meaningful evaluation.
    Sharing the workload is not the issue – I know that sounds silly – but it isn’t. The real issue is that the Haredim don’t want to lose control of their community, they don’t want to lose power, and those opposed want them to lose power and control.

    The discussion really is political, and not shallow wrangling but serious political stuff about leadership and the direction of the State of Israel.

    The feelings that the Haredim are not pulling their weight is very hard for me to evaluate because in such a discussion we need to determine if the State needs their manpower, if the army can really deal with so may Haredim, if the Haredim have their requirements such as time for prayer, and I mean their style of prayer -so do I hear some objection already – let me ask – if Israeli Muslims join the army will they not be entitled to their prayers as they require –
    then we need their Kosher requirements
    etc
    etc
    so all in all its likely to not be an economical process unless we consider that its objective may not be economic but a desire to wrest power from the Haredim. Its the elephant in the room.

    So there is a need to make accommodations for those who represent a tradition that is not acceptable to many who today live in Israel, to many Jews who see these Haredi styles as anachronistic – but nevertheless recognise their authenticity.

    I dont think it is impossible to come to a working relationship that permits us to move forward and glean the best from both perspectives. But the language of the dialogue must change – on both sides

  • Yaron says:

    1. What about the reports/rumours that the signs for the protest were posted around the Yeshiva grounds including the school?
    Did R’Smukler also fail to read the text?

    2. These apologies sound like every athlete that has ever been caught with drugs. It was a flu tablet, my mother gave it to me, I didn’t know, I had an old copy of the banned list – everything other than they are at fault.

    All we are lacking is for the leaders of the Yeshiva to attack the ‘petty minded individuals’ who dare to look cynically at their ‘apology’.

  • conflicted says:

    There are difficult laws in Torah which as religious jews we have to believe are divinely inspired , absolute truth and just.T ake for example the law (which we all just heard and read this week ,concerning the destruction of Amalek .Torah’s view is clearly a case of ethnic cleansing in the most extreme,we as jews are commanded to kill a new born child if he or she is a descendant of Amalek .This law would seem reprehensible,obscene cruel and unjust today,with all our ideals of P.C etc. Despite the apparent clear evil implications of this law,could any Jew who believes in Totah ,refute its validity ?.The answer is to use common sense ,its not a law we should broadcast to the world,but we still must believe it.Clearly Telsner and Groner would have been conflicted by their support or non support on the conscription issue ,I don’t think we should judge them too harshly for giving a rabbinic answer to a very complex issue.It certainly doesn’t reflect any lack of love or devotion or support for Israel or the need to keep it and its people safe

  • david segal says:

    Rabbi rabi

    you missed that Judaism didn’t start with the state of Israel. Judaism was there for many thousands of years, and it survived even in times when they worked all day in the fields, and learned one verse a day. I don’t think there Is a person in the world that is able to prove from Jewish sources how much Tora Learning we need for the survival of the nation and its heritage.

    The Jewish heritage is that the people worked and learned (if and when they were able to learn), and it never was learning and demanding that the government should support them, and others will protect them.

    I think that you missed the Verse from Job-Iyov (13,5):

    “מי יתן החרש תחרישון, ותהי לכם לחכמה”

    Translation:

    Would that you kept silent, and it would be accounted as wisdom for you.

  • Reb Dovid Segal,

    Judaism certainly did not start with the State of Israel, and it survived even in times when they worked all day in the fields, and did not learn all day.

    And I agree with you; no one can prove how much Torah Learning we need for the survival of the nation and its heritage. However, there appears to be very broad acceptance of the power and success of the Haredi style lifestyle, which includes extensive and extended Torah learning, and communities of those who financially, emotionally and politically, support such commitment, to have been a major contributor to the endurance and determination of a small physically vulnerable nation that was pummelled and beaten and terrorised throughout history mostly with clear intent to destroy us.

    Yes, it is clearly stated that people should not learn by being supported by Tzeddaka but there is a well established tradition and precedent that the tribe of Yissachar and Zevulun made pretty much long term arrangements whereby one supported the other who devoted themselves to learning Torah.

    Reb Dovid, you are a very proficient Torah scholar, and I respect your opinion and wisdom, let us discuss this further, either here or face to face if you prefer

  • Conflicted: re the destruction of Amalek.

    I think it is important to evaluate a society not by its legislation but by the system employed to interpret, implement and apply its laws.

    What were those laws that for so many decades remained unused until Sydney wanted to move the homeless people away from the olympics area? And tell me, how were they moved?

    These are the important Qs which far better identify the nature of our society.

    And we would accept the Beis Din’s interpretation and application of the Laws governing the destruction of Amalek, even if they would seek devices by which they hardly ever actually applied it.

    But I tend to agree, that the noise over this division is perhaps a little louder and more strident than is absolutely necessary.

  • Sunshine says:

    I believe the argument is that other than studying , which for most provide no benefit to the outside community ( if their prayers have worked then what the hell are they praying for) they don’t work and expect to be given everything other Israelis have to work for for nothing.

    Not providing army service is pure laziness and uses prayer as an out. Let’s not forget these people riot, trash the streets, abuse their children and steal from the government…. All of which are “tradition”
    I can do without

    If they don’t like it LEAVE.

    Don’t make a big storm about not recognising the state of Israel but expecting the state you don’t recognise to fund your lazy lifestyle .

    GET OUT because your lies and misrepresentations about Judaism make the rest of us sick

  • Sunshine, you poor misdirected distorted soul; you really are so wrong.

    I wish you a re-awakening and and an epiphany that will assist you in the best of ways to re-calibrate

  • david segal says:

    Rabbi rabi
    “However, there appears to be very broad acceptance of the power and success of the Haredi style lifestyle, which includes extensive and extended Torah learning”.
    What has all that to do with the price of fish?

    “… to have been a major contributor to the endurance and determination of a small physically vulnerable nation that was pummelled and beaten and terrorised throughout history mostly with clear intent to destroy us”.

    Please indicate in which millennium was it?

    “… but there is a well established tradition and precedent that the tribe of Yissachar and Zevulun made pretty much long term arrangements whereby one supported the other who devoted themselves to learning Torah”.

    Well, See רמב”ם הלכות תלמוד תורה פרק ג הלכה יד

    כל המשים על לבו שיעסוק בתורה ולא יעשה מלאכה ויתפרנס מן הצדקה הרי זה חלל את השם ובזה את התורה וכבה מאור הדת וגרס /וגרם/ רעה לעצמו ונטל חייו מן העולם הבא, לפי שאסור ליהנות מדברי תורה בעולם הזה, אמרו חכמים כל הנהנה מדברי תורה נטל חייו מן העולם, ועוד צוו ואמרו אל תעשם עטרה להתגדל בהן ולא קרדום לחפור בהן, ועוד צוו ואמרו אהוב את המלאכה ושנא את הרבנות וכל תורה שאין עמה מלאכה סופה בטילה וגוררת עון, וסוף אדם זה שיהא מלסטם את הבריות
    Also See: שו”ת אגרות משה יורה דעה ח”ד סימן לז סעיף ז

    א. ביאור ששותפות ישכר וזבולון אינה מעניין צדקה כלל

    Are the kollel’nics in Israel partners with the government?
    ___________________________

    I was planning to comment in detail on rabbis Telsner, Groner, and Shmukler’s letters, but I decided not to do so when I saw this blog:

    http://galusaustralis.com/2014/03/8203/rabbis-telsner-and-groner-an-apalling-display/

    I don’t think that Rabbis Telsner and Groner are sorry that they signed on a document that attacks the government of the state of Israel, I also don’t think that they wrote “their” letter. I think that “their” letter was written bt the “damage control” department of YBR, who also wrote Rabbi Smukler’s letter- both letters have too many similarities, and they use the same childish logic. I can’t believe that an school principal will write: “In 2012 YBR Colleges organized and hosted a public discussion panel / debate on the Tal law. It was well attended by diverse sectors of the community”, to displays their underlying educational principle of respectful debate and discussion about the crucial issues facing the Jewish world.
    Will they also organize a public discussion panel / debate on the topic “The conscription laws”, or this issue is too complex and controversial and affects the Jewish world?

  • Sunshine says:

    Reawakening ? You mean believe the crap?

    I’ve walked through these areas and seen the mess, been abused and spat in by these people

    I think reawakening occurred along time ago.

    Perhaps the harder they pray the less the criminals will get caught?

  • Sunshine,

    but you do know there are other perspectives that you just refuse to recognise.
    I do not say the Haredi lifestyle is perfect – but you seem to insist that it is absolutely and brutally imperfect.

    Can we have a meaningful discussion? I am willing but you are not.

    And this was the main point of my post, there can not be a useful dialogue if there is no recognition of the valid legitimate and constructive contributions made by the Haredi style groups – even though they may not be in accord with your preferred world view.

  • Sunshine says:

    Interesting point however why live in a State you don’t believe in?

    Because till now you got everything for free

    They aren’t upset that their prayers are being interfered with, they are upset that as citizens of the country they are required to follow it’s laws.

    Then leave. Nowhere does it say in the Torah or any Halacha that you can leech off a society you hate and give nothing in return.

    As Jews we expect Terence towards us but these ” Jews” tolerate nothing unless it feeds their lifestyle.

    [defamatory content removed]

  • Sunshine,

    please be at least half reasonable – people live in various places for all sorts of reasons, in E Israel particularly because it is “the Land upon which Gd’s eyes are constantly roving”.
    So some people don’t believe in the perspectives that you believe, what is the catastrophe?

    You say they get everything for free? but you would never accept those freebeis with the accompanying discomforts they gladly accept as a matter of principle.

    They are upset that as loyal citizens of good character, the country they live in now drafts laws to criminalise their loyalties which do not match those of the ruling class. Much as the Sefaradim were discriminated against in the early days of Medinat Yisrael.

    You say they should leave? And go live where? You are no better and a darn sight worse that Helen Thomas MHDSSIG.

    Your language is a clear window into your distorted and tortured soul. They who willingly sacrifice and provide the most important contribution, to a state that without question can only turn to its religious history and traditions for its sense of identity and self worth and validation; they give nothing in return?

    These ”Jews” tolerate every insult, every demeaning phrase, caricature, incendiary write-up and more, because as long as they can continue to follow their understanding of our ancient traditions, nothing deters them.

    Is that what so eats you up? They have have something they want to live for and are even prepared to die for it. And they do this as did their ancestors whether they be living in any part of the world. Do you Sunshine?

    Or do you only play when the sun shines?

  • Sunshine says:

    Never make assumptions “rabbi” you don’t know I’m not one of them not are you aware of personal experience

    I notice you don’t adress the pedophile issue which says enough
    I’ll keep my tortured soul thank you and you go back to arguing over glycerine and the other vital issues that affect us

  • Reuvain says:

    The bond between a Jew and israel can be based on many things. Is it just a secular nationalism, as the Zionist pioneers advocated. Or something much deeper and spiritual. The story is told that the founders of BILU, the early Zionist group came to Lubavitch asking for the Rebbes blessing( either the fourth or fifth Rebbe). He asked them to add the final words of the passuk they took their name ” Beit Yaakov Lechu Nenelcha BOR HASHEM”. They refused and he did not endorse them

    Despite being wary of secular nationalism Chabad took a remarkably different path then the rest of the Charidie population. They rejected identifying with the state, chabad saw the events of 1948, 67 etc etc as miraculous. They rejected the army chabad always sent its boys to the army.

    The starkest reflection of this was after Mumbai. The Chassidisher who were killed were taken to a Charidie funeral. The shliach and shlucha funeral was highlighted by Israeli secular politicians. Chabad shared its sorrow with all Israeli society. It chooses to be part of that society.

    At the same time Chabad has reservations about Judaism based on secular nationalism. Chabad has taken a middle ground between mizrachi and hardie. We support the country. Our sons have died for it we believe that Torah should be the preeminent value

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