The Rally Clip

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65 Responses

  1. Ben Waxman says:

    I hope that I, my children, and all my descendents will merit to be among the yoshvei beis Medrash AND serve in Zahal or in other forms of national service. There is no contradiction.

  2. Nachum says:

    R’ Adlerstein, I pray that your descendents will be proud yoshvei beit midrash *and* fine soldiers in the IDF, and return from the duty safe and sound. It’s not either/or, you know.

    [YA – I know, and I thank you for the brachah]

  3. Joseph says:

    Wait – so some anonymous website makes some video that from all appearances seems to be designed to make Chareidim look like imbeciles, and to give it credibility makes it appear to be composed Chareidim, however dubious that appearance is considering the absurdity of the footage included that far from makes them look righteous, and you take it seriously and give this anonymous video credibility and furthermore write “And they squandered it in a moment”?

    Who is the “they”? The anonymous video editors or Rav Shteinman?

    [YA – Certainly the former and not the latter. But it has to be condemned. It was posted on Kikar Shabbos, which is not a trivial site, and has circulated more than extensively – particularly outside the charedi community. It also serves as a warning of what people will do with the rallies scheduled for NY]

  4. Miriam Haber says:

    Glad to see this posting but I can’t understand how people participating in this rally took “at least part of the moral high road.” The people participating at the rally are, as you put it, demonstrating that they will not compromise what they regard as their principles. One of those principles is that my Israeli children (who are religious and value studying Torah) go to the army and defend the participants’ Israeli children, who are refusing to go to the army. There is NOTHING moral about that principle- in fact, it is distinctly immoral. Until people in the Haredi camp understand that their position on this issue is inherently unethical, this rift will only get larger and larger. I also think that your swipe at Yair Lapid (“the cheap pandering of Yesh Atid to the worst instincts of the public”) displays your lack of understanding about the depth and breadth of the widespread anger at the Haredi community among the various non-Haredi populations in Israel. I accompanied my oldest son to Bakum (where the army recruits check in to start their army service) when he started his combat service and I didn’t need Yair Lapid’s help or “pandering” to make me angry at the Haredi people who showed up on the same day to claim exemption from service. Their choosing to do so is taking the immoral low road, not the moral high road, even if they are studying Torah full-time instead of serving in the army. And your dream that your descendants continue to make that immoral choice is simply unfathomable to me. Do you really wish that your descendants will be immoral people?

    [YA – Nope. I’m hoping that if we still are in need of an IDF, that they will serve! As far as Lapid, I understand the sentiment, as well as an American from afar can understand. But the question is what you (and he) would prefer at this point. Would you like to vent justified anger? Or would you prefer to see the success of small steps in the right direction, that ultimately will snowball?]

  5. Natan Slifkin says:

    The natural consequence of refusing to ever express any gratitude is that some will take it further and will start to express ingratitude.

  6. SKJ says:

    Thanks for standing against that disgusting display.

  7. Menachem Lipkin says:

    Very important post on your part. Now someone needs to translate this to Hebrew and post it on Kikar Shabbos. (Though not sure why you felt the need to take that pot shot at YA.)

    [YA – (not to be confused with YA of the line above, which is Yesh Atid.) I was one of those who was really taken in by Yair Lapid’s speech at Ono, as is a matter of record. But the antics he has engaged in (ask Bennet!) have wiped out the slow progress of the last few years, and set back the process even more. I know that there are secular people in the government who agree.

    He has become a cheap populist, more concerned with his political future than the mission (at least insofar as haredi integration) that he was once concerned with.

  8. Ben Waxman says:

    Joseph

    I also half suspect that the whole thing is a parody. Or not a parody but a satire, and that the video is really calling the talmidei yeshivot yoshvei kranot and Kikar Shabbat didn’t get it.

  9. Avraham says:

    Posted this on another blog and got no response, so I’ll try again here: I don’t understand how such a spiritually sensitive community has no problem showing complete disrespect for the streets of Jerusalem by leaving them littered with thousands of flyers and other trash. I saw 5 (Arab?) city workers cleaning up one small stretch of street and felt a tremendous sense of embarrasment that such a thing could have happened in the name of Torah.

  10. Baruch says:

    I must respectfully take issue with your effusive praise for the event itself. I might have agreed with you if not for the vitriolic signs that were distributed by the hundreds (and then strewn all over the streets so the people involved in דברים בטלים could pick them up). These signs contained pesukim describing Haman’s threat against the Jews (לך כנוס את כל היהודים), things like בכל דור ודור עומדים עלינו לכלותינו, “War Against Religion,” “We Will Not Enlist in the Army of Shmad,” and so on and so forth. I honestly try very hard to respect the charedi community, with which I am involved on some level, and whose sfarim I use regularly. But this is not Torah Judaism, plain and simple. Understandable opposition to the new draft law (which I also oppose) does not give license to distort it by using inflammatory language and sensationalism, portraying it as a war against the Jewish religion, which is exactly what the charedi tzibur is doing. This kind of alarmism, hyperbole and rhetoric is not part of the mesorah that I have received and which I love and cherish.

  11. SA says:

    So who cleaned up all that garbage strewn on the streets of Jerusalem by the “yoshvei beis hamerash?”

  12. Jameel Rashid says:

    What is truly vile, is that the Chareidi website “Kikar Shabbat” which gets tens of thousands of daily visitors, is the one which publicized and editorialized this video. Whether it is the “official” video or not, the fact that a well known Chareidi website agrees with the video speaks volumes.

  13. Yariv Ovadia says:

    Dear Rabbi Adlerstein, as an Israeli who served the Israeli Army and its government for more than 20 years… I am so proud that you are my brother.

  14. Moshe says:

    Dear Rabbi Adlerstein Shlit”a,

    I second and fully share your deep outrage at this clip. At the same time, I am absolutely aghast that, as a media-sensitive person, you would generalize the “they” without serious qualification that this is not in the least representative of Rav Steinman’s hashkafah. That itself constitues propagating and perpetuating vile slander, not combatting it, and simply invites the usual suspects on this site to vent their spleen. The vast majority of comments on Kikar HaShabbat, by Charedim, condemned the video just as harshly as you. Some idiot puts out the clip and Kikar Hashabbat – a provocative site that has no qualms posting things that NO Charedi can accept as within the lines of common decency – gives it publicity, and hence it becomes “they”? Unacceptable.

    [YA – I would not imply for a nanosecond that it represents R. Ahron Leib shlit”a. But he is not the only player! Neither of us know if it was one anonymous idiot who was responsible, or it represents the sentiment of a sizeable part of the population. But we both know of a dynamic within our community that produces thinking like this, and it is alive and well in the mainstream charedi media, including here in the US. At some point, more people – including those who think the video goes to far – have to step back and ask, “How did we get people to this point?”]

  15. Y. Ben-David says:

    I am afraid I am going to have to disagree with Rav Adlerstein’s conclusion.
    First of all, the claim that this rally is going to make people realize “that
    this is a community that can not be ignored”. That has been the situation for
    decades. The Haredi community has gotten a lot of things out of the government,
    including budgets, exemptions from army service,
    special housing priviledges, religious legislation and even
    control of the Chief Rabbinate even though were the people of the country to
    have a real say in choosing the Chief Rabbis, they would pick Rabbis from the
    Religious Zionist camp. The population of the country, the taxpayers who pay
    for the budgets the Haredim have gotten over the years are now demanding
    that reforms be made. They will not allow the situation to continue as it has.

    Secondly, I believe the atzeret will cause a boomerang effect among the rest of the
    population. The plan to have one in New York will add to this. Haredi spokesmen
    seem to think that the whole problem is Lapid, and once he is ousted from the government,
    or from the Knesset, things will go back the way they were. This is not the case.
    These problems are not going to go away. The only way of dealing with it is for the
    Haredi leadership to carry out a REAL dialogue with the general Israeli public explaining
    how they view the role in society, something they have refused to do up until now.
    For example, Israelis are aware that Haredim refuse to say the misheberach for the
    IDF soldiers. They do not understand why. If there are those who base the refusal
    on the fact that they do not recognize the legitimacy of the state or the spiritual role
    of those who serve it, then the public wants to know how these same people can justify
    demanding budgets from the from the taxpayer by way the the same state which they have problems
    with. Another is the fact that everyone knows that not all Haredim are full-time Torah learners.
    The question is asked why these people can not serve in the IDF or other forms of national
    service, even if they are tailor-made to accomodate Haredi requirements. No answer is given
    to this question.
    The Haredi parties have, up until now, been able to serve as the swing vote between the Right
    and Left in Israel, and the Left justified making concessions to the Haredi parties on the
    basis that “we need their support in order to make concessions to the Arabs”. This is no longer
    the situation. The Left has collapsed politically and even if it comes back to power, their
    voters who were traditionally less sympathetic to Haredi demands will not agree to cancel
    reforms that the political Right has implemented.

    Thus, I don’t see how this demonstration or possible future ones will change any of this.
    The only thing that can do that is a forthright explanation, as I said, of how the Haredim
    view their role in society, something that has been missing until now.

  16. Rivka Leah says:

    I am certainly happy that you do not find the video anything but distasteful – while my hashkafos are closer to chareidi than chiloni, all that this video generated was embarrassment as I watched it, as the soldiers walking through looked more purposeful and dignified than the bochurim having a frum “rave” inthe streets. Most painful was the young bochur literally tossing leaflets into the air, and the massive littering. Am I nuts, is it just my being American?

    But the saddest part is, while it might be so that a “sonei Yisroel” created the clip to mock the rally, its absurd that a frum website could not see it clearly.

    That lack of awareness, is frightening. That they would NOT see it as mockery, rather as a siman of our leibedich bochurim, or just as a positive show of strength in numbers, is scary.

  17. Chochom b'mah nishtanah says:

    One of the horrible results of Yesh Atid’s stance, and I include all the members, is the negative attitude towards soldiers by chareidim.

    In the past there was respect towards the soldiers. However with Yesh Atid’s agenda, they have become a symbol and the same respect that was shown before is gone because of what Yesh Atid made them represent to the chareidim.

    I lay the new attitude squarely at the feet of Laoid and his lap dogs, Including Lipman and Piron.

  18. Joseph says:

    R. Adlerstein: I agree it should be condemned. But when you write “And they squandered it in a moment”, you implicate it was produced by the Chareidi community rather than the anonymous puppets it was. Even if this video *were* produced by individual Chareidim (and like I said I highly doubt that and believe this video was produced by those *opposed to the rally*) it has no bearing on the general Chareidi community and certainly not on the rally which the anonymous video editors cannot “squander” as it wasn’t their rally – and they are likely opponents of the rally seeking to make it look imbecilic.

    In short, my concern is your accepting this video as some real representation of anyone other than some anonymous cowards.

    [YA – I’m accepting your criticism and modifying the phrase. Thanks!]

  19. dr. bill says:

    I watched the lubavitcher rebbe make the point in his now famous talk on the subject, when he talked of the precedence given to zevulun over issaschar. while I completely agree with the position that one is obligated halakhically to do both, it is the denigration of those who serve in the IDF that must be condemned. I cannot fathom why that does not occur (loudly)in many chareidi circles. a mishebairach for chayalim is the least one can expect.

  20. chardal says:

    >One of the horrible results of Yesh Atid’s stance, and I include all the members, is the negative attitude towards soldiers by chareidim.

    מ’ קידושין (לב ע”א) : “דרב הונא קרע שיראי באנפי רבה בריה אמר איזול איחזי אי רתח אי לא רתח ודלמא רתח וקעבר אלפני עור לא תתן מכשול? דמחיל ליה ליקריה”

    We learn from this gemara that there is not aveira of לפני עיוור in issues of middot. (this is also the opinion of R’ Yisrael Salanter. Stop blaming those that disagree with you for the highly disturbing attitudes that are within your own camp. Adults are responsible for their decisions including the decision to actively deride those who work day and night to protect them and fund their lifestyle. The chareidi political machine can bring hundreds of thousands people out to protest a law that is trying to make the country a little more fair. I am sure that if they put their minds to it they can also convince some of those same people that they should show some appreciation, respect and civil responsibility towards the state in which they live.

  21. Nachum says:

    Chochom, can you offer one piece of evidence that there was some great respect toward the IDF (and State) before 2013? I highly doubt it. Your passing the blame is…well, just that.

    Also, it’s Rav Piron. I’m not going to go out of my when it comes to R’ Lipman, and I imagine he wouldn’t either. I also imagine R’ Piron doesn’t really care, but he is a rosh yeshiva and talmid chacham. Nu, his lack of beard and hat keep him from being a “gadol,” but have some kavod hatorah.

    The number of posts claiming this is a hoax or something similar is astounding. Do you all really not think it’s possible that there are people- even one nut- who feels this way?

  22. Reuven says:

    I once saw a question sent to R’ Aviner along the lines of, “People are spreading lies about me. What should I do?”
    R’ Aviner’s response was, “Become the type of person about whom no one will believe them.”

    There are many who are questioning whether this video is “authentic” and in fact official.
    The very fact that so many of us believe that it could be is itself implicative.

    If the rally had included the Tefillah L’Chayalei Tzahal, and some expression of gratitude for the emergency services – both national and communal – that enabled them to hold such a rally, we wouldn’t even be asking the question.

  23. Y. Ben-David says:

    “Chochom b’mah nishtanah”-
    What you are saying is that Haredim believe that putting collective guilt on a complete tzibur is somehow justified.
    Is that an example of good midot? Is it then fair for Hilonim to blame all Haredim for the actions of a few bad apples?
    That is precisely the problem! Their leadership should speak out loud and clear about this. I fail to see why
    the “state” is somehow perceived by a lot of people as being some demonic entity that it is justifiable to carry out a
    war against it and anyone somehow identified with it. It is things like this that cause many non-Haredim to question
    the values of the Haredi community, whether justifiably or not.

  24. YS says:

    I’ve always been slightly uncomfortable with the Tefilla used in the song. It seems to imply that there are two kinds of people in the world – Yoshvei Beis HaMidrash and Yoshvei K’ranos – and that you’re either one or the other. So if you’re not learning, then you’re basically an Am Ha’Aretz.
    I guess this can be rationalized by either explaining that it just refers to the two extremes, and that there are many other kinds of people in between, or that it’s not meant to be taken that seriously. But I don’t find these explanations satisfactory and they certainly go a long way towards explaining the attitude of many in the Yeshiva-world towards those not involved in full-time learning.

  25. Yaakov Menken says:

    I side with Joseph, who thinks this video “was produced by those *opposed to the rally*.” Far from being an “official clip,” it is an amateurish mash-up, the work of a single individual sitting at his PC for perhaps two hours using Windows Movie Maker or similar software. It takes less effort, and certainly has even less authenticity, then the most poorly-produced Pashkevil claiming to represent the opinion of Gedolim.

    Before calling the clip “an embarrassment to all of those who proudly identify with the ‘yoshvei beis Medrash,'” let’s await evidence that it was produced by someone who identifies with the “yoshvei beis Medrash” of the video. It is at least as likely, at this point, that it was deliberately produced to create divisiveness and hatred towards those same “yoshvei beis Medrash,” by which count it succeeded.

    Israel Matzav provides this information:

    It turns out that the video was originally uploaded to YouTube. It was uploaded by a user called ChemouelYaacov around midnight Tuesday night Israel time.

    The user is apparently a new user.

    I share his conclusion: “I doubt this is an official video. More likely it’s a spoof intended to embarrass the rally organizers. Does anyone really think that an ‘official’ Haredi video would be posted on YouTube? Really?”

  26. Gershon Seif says:

    I too am disgusted by the video. Parody or not, produced by one foolish ingrate or by many, it needs to condemned. It would be refreshing to see 1,000 people post their disgust, with their full names right here. Even if you usually feel, for whatever reason, that you don’t want to post your name on the internet, this should be different. There should be no shame in shouting hakoras hatov from the rooftops to the many people who risk their lives to defend their people.

  27. Bob Miller says:

    The event organizers would not issue this parody or any other Web video.

    Dati Leumi commenters should spend more time reflecting on the negative effects of their political party’s collaboration with the sleazy incompetent Lapid, including negative effects on their own advanced yeshivot.

  28. Rafael Guber says:

    Rabbi Adlerstein

    At the end of the day, entitlement borders very closely on the edges of gaivah and as we know HaShem Yisborach refuses to abide in a Makom gaivah. The lack of Hakaras Ha Tov for say even Hesder boys who desire no less than their black hatted brethren to be learning rather than putting there young lives on the line might have been the subject of a tefilah at the rally but to pray for these young men is admit that their sacrifices and hishtadlus matters and is worthy of be honored. Is is time for people to stop saying, “but our sons are learning Torah to protect your sons.” Ultimately this demeans the one who says it was well as the one about whom it is being said. It also Chas VShalom, demeans Torah. As a result of all this, is it my desire to step up my own learning, both stam LeShaim Shamayim and as a melitz yosher for those act unselfishly on behalf of the children, women and men of Israel.Like you I would like nothing more than identifying with the “yoshvei beis Medrash,” If, however, for reasons of principle and emes, the best I can do is identify with the Tehillim zogers who spoke to HaShem while greasing their wagon wheels so be it. There is another reason we should all be learning. We can establish directly with Hashem our understanding that it is our Torah too and our responsibility to resonate with the will of the Abishter.

  29. lacosta says:

    so then the question r menken must answer is not on an individual, but rather the folks ar Kikar Shabbat , who feel that this type of portrayal would

    1] find credence in the haredi street 2] either feel this way about non-haredi society , or just dont care what they think

    and either of those don’t augur well. as RYA and r yonoson rosenblum often point out the ”love” that the hiloni society perceives , has come back to hit the haredim in spades…

  30. Moshe Dick says:

    Anyone who has followed the debate on the new law for past months and read what was said by the chareidi spokesmen after the rally know that this video and the thoughts behind it are the genuine feelings of many chareidim. When MK Eichler compares the drafters of the new law to Amalek,Haman and the Nazis and when MK Litzman says flatly, we will not serve in the army, is it any wonder that the general public sees only ingrates on the other side? When well-meaning people try to help the chareidi world integrate into the normal life of society are vilified and insulted , why would one assume that the chareidi world is a sensible one? No, I believe that he video accurately represents a large part of the chareidi tsibbur.
    The time has come for the chareidi world to assume its obligations to the society they live in. We are at a crossroads and the chareidi world cannot forever shirk its duties.

  31. Yair Spolter says:

    Dumb video.
    Disrespectful. Idiotic. Slanderous.
    Sadly, it grossly misrepresents the Charedi outlook and the atzeres t’fillah.
    It’s a shame Kikar Hashabbat featured it. I hope they remove it from their site and apologize.

  32. Natan Slifkin says:

    Rabbi Menken, you ask for evidence that it was produced by someone who identifies with the “yoshvei beis Medrash” of the video. Well, it was certainly promoted by those who identify with the “yoshvei beis Medrash” of the video, since it was first promoted on Kikar HaShabat. The Kikar HaShabat logo also appears in the upper left side of the video.

    [And of course Kikar HaShabat has a reputation for being a mouthpiece of the Gedolim, and would never publish a random item just to get traffic and stir up controversy… — YM]

  33. David says:

    Don’t you all remember the YouTube video on Muhammad by that Egyptian Copt in CA? Same thing. One idiot did this, I assume. Let’s not be like the State Dept and turn this into something more than it is. On the other hand, to those who think it was done by an anti-rally person, you’re now officially of the same mindset as those who think that the CIA or Israel did 9/11.

  34. Menachem Lipkin says:

    YA said: “I was one of those who was really taken in by Yair Lapid’s speech at Ono, as is a matter of record. But the antics he has engaged in (ask Bennet!) have wiped out the slow progress of the last few years, and set back the process even more. I know that there are secular people in the government who agree.

    He has become a cheap populist, more concerned with his political future than the mission (at least insofar as haredi integration) that he was once concerned with.”

    I respectfully disagree. I think he’s done an amazing job at attempting to fulfill his campaign promises. I don’t remember a politician here or there who has done so much he set out to do in such a short time. Another important aspect of that party is how many amazing people are part of it. These are truly the type of people that congress was supposed to be made up of… those of all walks of life leaving their professional lives to give to their nation.

    [YA – I am happy that he has been able to deliver at least part of the vision. Introducing that caliber of people to Israeli politics is terrific, and an accomplishment that hopefully will outlive his influence. But his handling of the draft has had disastrous consequence – that could have been avoided. Seen from the distance, it is like watching two children get into a fight, each of them pushing the hot button of the other. Does Yesh Atid want slogans, vengeance – or relief from the economic burden of a growing community on the public dole? How astute did you have to be to understand that if you not only included the criminalization of non-service but HYPED it, that you would drive the other side into a frenzy. (Yes, I realize that there was no intention to throw anyone into jail.) By playing the card publicly to the delight of some of the voters – against the protests of Bibi, Ayelet Shaked,Naftali Bennett, and even Shahar Ilan – Lapid assured huge resolve and pushback from the haredi camp, the weakening of the position of the moderates, backlash against those in Netzach Yehudah and the job training programs, and the support of large numbers of US charedim. Lapid has set back much of the progress – slow that it was. Slow progress is better than regress.]

    The slow progress of the past few years was too slow and was being overwhelmed by the growth of extremist elements.

    [YA – I think you are putting the cart before the horse. When I was in Yerushalayim last year in a super charedi neighborhood, HaPeles was dropped on street corners, and NO ONE picked up a copy. Today, that would not be the case.]

    If you want to “blame” someone for the advent of Yesh Atid you can start with the Chareidi parties. They abdicated their responsibility, in 20 years as kingmakers, to take care of the needs of their constituents.

    [YA – This is a key point. I wouldn’t disagree in the slightest, but you haven’t provided half the picture. All the parties who were cooperating with the growth of the “system” saw what it was producing, and gladly participated in return for votes. They share equally in the blame Maybe more so, because they could see what was coming, unlike the charedi public that was brought up for successive generations on untruths – or more accurately, arguments that were once true, but had ceased to be operative. What some in the Israeli public have done is to put all the blame on the addicts, without assigning any to the drug-producers. That is morally short-sighted.]

    The vacuum they created was easily filled by Yesh Atid. I think you’ll be surprised, despite all the posturing, how much progress will be made now. The current equal service plan was not created out of thin air, there has been much input, off the record, from Chareidi Roshei yeshiva. And the plan itself is very well thought out. Even Sunday’s rally was perfunctory. I have it on good authority that the fact that it was billed as a prayer rally and not a protest was very significant.

    [YA I can vouch for the accuracy of your last sentence. And yes, there are roshei yeshivah already cutting private deals. I’ve written several times before about the very positive thinking and plans for both national service and employment, coming from both government and academic sources. I fear that much of the momentum has been erased – and I will blame Lapid.]

    Look forward to a significant announcement on Monday.

    Time will tell, but I think we’re headed in the right direction. And I conjecture that many Chareidi leaders are quite happy to let Yair Lapid be the “bad cop” to accomplish what most everyone knows needs to be done.

  35. Solomon says:

    Has anyone given any thought to the possibility that some group within the chareidi media is truly fed up with the rhetoric and victimization going on? Maybe the point of the video was to generate disgust amongst its viewers – and maybe to question the essential position that the law is inherently bad?

  36. Dovid Kimche says:

    This is a bizarre clip. And most certainly created by some extremist nut. It tells a horribly distorted account of what went on. I was at the rally. (Although I do not agree with all the policies of the Charedi camp, I felt strongly over the proposed imprisonment of yeshiva students, and that sent me – and a healthy amount of those in the ‘middle’ – to the rally.) It was a peaceful tefilla. Yes, as seems predictable with every public frum event, there was a 2% of kano’im who throw around annoying leaflets and hold inflammatory signs, and they ruin it for the rest of us. (I had a heated exchange with a carrier of such a sign where I told him that Rav Aron Leib had stressed this was a tefilla, not a hafganna, and in the same way that you wouldn’t bring such a sign into a shul you should not bring it here.) Jonathan Rosenblum wrote recently decrying this reality, where the possibility of kiddush Hashem is scuppered by these wonderful kano’im. (Admittedly, the dancing at the end was incongruous to the atmosphere of the event. I just didn’t get it. Why the dancing? Why now? In any event, the dancing was also a minor minor part – lasting ten minutes, perhaps. This clip makes it look like the mainstay of the event.) This clip is not representative of what went on, nor the general sentiment of those in attendance.

  37. Michael Halberstam says:

    There is no doubt that Hashem is the Shomer Yisroel ,and that he wants us to survive in spite of a leadership which is out to commit suicide on behalf of us all. If anyone applies a little bit of sechel to what is going on here, he must realize that future generations will reject whatever we stood for, unless somehow HKBH will give them the sechel to forgive us our mistakes. Even in the short term however there is no logical explanation for what is happening here. If there were, the stock answer to every legitimate complaint would not be Gedolim

  38. Y. Ben-David says:

    I am afraid that to dismiss this whole issue as merely Lapid and Yesh Atid “pandering” to supposedly anti-religious elements of the population is to completely miss what is really going on in Israel. I have lived in Israel more that 27 years and the refrain I have constantly heard from non-religious Israelis is regarding this issue. THESE PEOPLE ARE NOT “ANTI-RELIGIOUS”. They are even willing to accept having budding top-scholars being exempted from servie, but they can not understand why Haredim who are not cut out for being full-time kollel people being exempted from military or national service. They are also supportive of making accomodations for special Haredi requirements.
    This issue is not going to go away, even after Lapid leaves the political scene, and having more large demonstrations are not going to change this. Things will not go back the way they were.

  39. Moshe Dick says:

    Well, if anyone thought that the chareidim are contrite about their march (and the video clip), just check Kikar Shabbat and read that the Israeli Yated is now attacking the Moshavim in Judea and Samaria, accusing them of siphoning money and the Yated wants an “equality of burden” for the moshavim. If anyone had any doubt about the maliciousness of the spokespeople of the chareidi world, do you need any more proof? Where do Kiryat Sefer, Emanuel, and other chareidi towns lie? In Jjudea and Samaria, of coruse. The Yated is willing to abandon thousands of their own brothers, just to continue feathering their own nests. Chevron, Shechem, Kever Rochel, all of it is not important, only their comfortable apartments in Bnai Braq. This is not only dangerous but smells of Sodom and Gomorrah!

  40. Yaacov Dovid says:

    Instead of trying to infer chareidi values from this clip, let us take note that chareidi Knesset members have spoken about either pro-actively destroying hesder yeshivas as a type of payback (as Gafni was reported to have said) or standing by as the government takes steps such as destroying hesder yeshivas and expelling Jews from “settlements,” chas veshalom.

    I myself just heard a member of Degel Hatorah in a radio interview express those latter ideas. He said explicitly that he would be willing to cause pain to Dati Leumi Jews so that they would in turn put pressure on their political leaders to act in line with chareidi political goals.

  41. Raymond says:

    I am so very tempted to say something here against the Chareidi community. However, in the spirit of reconciliation that words accompanying the video above is aiming for, I will refrain for the moment. Plus, there is something to be said for gratitude, and so if the Chareidi community would indeed both feel and show gratitude toward all the hard working Jews who make the Torah study of the Chareidim possible, that can go a long way in bringing greater unity among our Jewish people.

    I really think that a solution to this problem can be almost entirely achieved, simply by making the Yissachar-Zevulun relationship a voluntary one. As long as people are forced by the government and against their will, to support those who learn Torah all day, there is going to be highly justified resentment toward the Chareidi community. But if private individuals or charitable groups decide on their own, without government intervention, to support such yeshiva students, then nobody by definition would feel resentment, since it is all being left to individual free choice. It is the difference between taxes, which virtually all of us resent, versus charity, which almost all of us love to give.

    As for serving in the Army, there is simply no justification for some groups to be favored over others. I would have thought that people who study the Torah all day, would be especially prone to defending their people on the military battlefield, since such an increased love for their own people would have been developed, but I guess I must be rather naive in this regard. It does strike me as shameful that the Chareidim would think themselves so superior, that somehow they are exempt from serving in the Army, and even from earning a living. Most shameful of all, are those cases where the wife is expected to bear and raise many, many children, while at the same time working full-time, while her husband sits and learns Torah all day. To at least my way of thinking, such a man has not let the Torah true teachings he is studying all day, penetrate his Jewish soul.

  42. David Z says:

    At some point don’t you have to say, that’s it, I admit it, I’m not “kharedi”? I’m a ben-tora and these guys aren’t. And I know many of them are individually, but not as a culture. They have no concept of d’rakheha darkhe noam. Or that we pasken like hilel in the g’mara in m’sekhet shabat where it tells us to be like hilel and not like shamai. Although aurely shamai would never throw garbage around on the streets, treat papers written in lashon hakodesh with such disdain, or waste so much time sitting or wandering around doing nothing (and I’m concerned with batala when I talk current events with my khavruta for a few minutes?!). (For some reason I picture shamai as a Yekki–in a good way.)

    I honestly though the video was khiloni propaganda against kharedim until I saw the title. As khiloni propaganda it’s pretty funny and requires kheshbon hanefesh. It contrasts people who spend their days constructively helping the Jewish people (even putting their lives on the line) with people who wander around aimlessly vandalizing their own neighborhoods protected by those they denigrate. But if kharedim made this thing? That’s just messed up, man.

    This is why i hate the phrase “American kharedi.” The two groups have little in common, even as the “American kharedi” likes to pretend they do and show respect for rabbis they would never put up with in their own hometowns. So let’s come up with a new name for frum Jews (how about frum Jews? Or b’ne tora if we need a Hebrew phrase?) and separate from these embarrassments to the tora of moshe, ezra, and r’ y’huda hanasi.

    In response to all those who think this is a hoax or a lone wolf, we who are at least partially in the community know that this mindset exists and is widespread. How much longer do we have to pretend we’re allied with it?

  43. Natan Slifkin says:

    “And of course Kikar HaShabat has a reputation for being a mouthpiece of the Gedolim, and would never publish a random item just to get traffic and stir up controversy… — YM”

    Kikar HaShabat has a reputation for being a mouthpiece of many people in the Charedi community (nobody is claiming that the Gedolim endorse this video). It didn’t simply publish a random item – the Kikar Shabat logo is embedded in the video. And there are several comments on the site supporting the video. If even Charedim who have Internet support the video, there is presumably even more support among Charedim who don’t have Internet.

  44. eri says:

    @dovid kimche
    i was “at the rally” aka needed to pass through that area (which was very difficult) and I dunno what rally you were at, but the sign-holders were not “2%”

  45. Eli says:

    Rabbi Adlerstein,

    I am sure the vast majority of chareidim would detest this video. However, nobody has yet given me a satisfactory answer as to why a great number of chareidi shuls do not even say a tefillah for the safety of IDF soldiers who put themselves on the front line. With this in mind, I have a hard time believing that chareidi mass avoidance of the draft is due to a desire of all of them to learn Torah all day (as is widely known, many do not). Rather, the conclusion I drew a long time ago was that they avoid the draft en mass is because they do not see the need to put themselves physically in danger or expose themselves to the outside world, for the sake of an institution they view with ambivalence at best.

  46. Chaim Moshe says:

    Instead of trying to infer chareidi values from this clip, let us take note that chareidi Knesset members have spoken about either pro-actively destroying hesder yeshivas as a type of payback (as Gafni was reported to have said)

    And which he denied.

    or standing by as the government takes steps such as destroying hesder yeshivas and expelling Jews from “settlements,” chas veshalom.

    Hello, Bayit Yehudi did not just stand by; they actively voted for criminal sanctions which is a spit in the face of every Ben Torah on the face of the earth and a Chillul Hashem that screams to the very heavens! Besides, it will do nothing but retard any positive integration processes going on in Charedi society. What justification is there for that? So they can stay on board with Yesh Atid and draft girls into the army? So they can give up on public transportation standards on Shabbos? So they can have loose giyyur standards? So they can make sure dogs have rights too? So gays can have tax benefits? This government has trampled time and again and again on religious values. Bayit Yehudi cannot claim to be a religious party with any straight face and all its religiously committed constituents should not pressure it; they should reject it as not representative of their values and form another party forthwith.

    He said explicitly that he would be willing to cause pain to Dati Leumi Jews so that they would in turn put pressure on their political leaders to act in line with chareidi political goals.

    And if it were Chiloni Jews who were caused pain, that would be okay? What is your point? There is no more fraternity between the Charedim and the Dati Leumi on the political level than the Charedim with the Chilonim. Bayit Yehudi lied about what they would do regarding criminal sanctions and thus made it clear (yet again, after Round 1 with Effie Eitam and Tommy Lapid’s ill-fated embrace) that it is political dog-eat-dog between them and the Charedim on the deepest ideological issues. So what do you expect Charedi politicians to do, nothing? Get stomped and trampled on? Turn the other cheek? You should all be screaming at Bayit Yehudi for spitting on Bnei Torah and abetting Yesh Atid’s agenda.

  47. cvmay says:

    This year klal yisroel has entered the 49th rung of impurity….. I do not believe that we can descend any lower.

    Whether it is reports of sexual harassment on regular or mehadrin buses towards women, fraudulent and lies committed in Bet Shemesh in order to vote Charedi, beating up Reb Steinman shlit”a, mud slinging & harsh rhetoric plus nekamah towards frum Jews, spitting and vulgar behaviors towards Dati Leumi elementary students, Nazi concentration camp get-ups, posters and malicious behavior towards soldiers, etc. ETC.

    I have not and do not plan to view this video…except I can vouch for its accurate description since this is what Charedi Media & spokesmen have been writing and saying for the last two years. Enough blaming everyone but otherselves!!!!

  48. Yisrael says:

    I just saw a fantastic video on YouTube that is titled “The official response to the official video of the hareidi prayer rally”. Can you post it?

    [YA – Someone sent me a copy, and it seems, under the circumstances, like a reasonable request. Besides, it is very good! Hopefully, later]

  49. David Brusowankin says:

    Whether or not the video is “officially sanctioned” isn’t the point (perhaps a secondary point). The fact that someone, clearly influenced by the rhetoric on both sides made it is the point. And the fact that Kikar Shabbat published it is also an indictment. But on the positive side, the response seems to have caused a change of heart and Kikar Shabbat as apologized. This is a very good thing.

  50. Daniel says:

    It isn’t obvious to me that they intended anything bad.

    Yes, it does seem to present speaking for Israel in the UN as ישיבת קרנות, but perhaps what was really meant is just that Bibi is a יושב קרנות. After all, chazal do present it as a dichotomy: if you are not a yosheiv beis medrash, you are a yoshev keranos. So Bibi is a yoshev keranos, and even with all the good things he does, we are still happy that we are instead yoshvei beis medrash. That is, they meant that Bibi is generally a yoshev keranos; rather than this was an act of yeshiva keranos.

    To bolster this reading, note that they don’t show themselves learning torah: they just show themselves. They are saying, “we are yoshvei beis medrash, here is a picture of us”. And that, “they are yoshvei keranos, here is a picture of them”.

  51. L. Oberstein says:

    I feel like the odd man out right now. Our Rosh Hayeshiva has flown to Israel just so he can address a Shas election rally in Ramat Beit Shemesh but plans to immediately fly back so he can be at the mass prayer gathering in Lower Manhattan. The entire Olom Hayeshivos en masse will be there and this justifies in his eyes being mevatel the bais medrash for an entire day. How I miss Rabbi Herman Neuberger. When he was alive and well , we all went to Washington to rally for Israel and for Soviet Jewry,never to rally against the policies of Israel. But, times have changed and the Olom Hayeshivos is now following the lead of a different world view. I am sure that this was foisted on the American Agudah and was not their desire. The proof is that a month ago they nixed it. But, I am told ,Rav Shteinmann,shlita even after he was advised by Knesset Member Gafni that it might be counter produtive, feels that the Chillul Hashem of a law that would jail people for learning Torah requires a public outcry. Maybe someone will enlighten me but there is no such law. It is a red herring. Every draft dodger can be sent to jail for up to 2 years but this is hardly ever applied .No one is stupid enough to mass arrest chareidim. Itis just correcting an inbalance in the law treating all draft dodgers equally. If Satmar stays away and if indeed they have no speechs and if there are no placards with attacks on Israel for the media to photograph, then a turnout of 100,000 or more will get the attention of many Israelis and maybe they can work it out in a civilized way.
    Truth be told, men were going to Netzach Yehudah and men were taking job training courses in increasing numbers. Will this stop that. Even those who agree to the rally are dismayed that the Gedolim have come out totally against army service and any and all job training courses. This is going too far and I wonder if Rav Shteinmann really agrees with it. Time will tell if Yair Lapid succeeds but I do not think it will go back to the status quo ante. hashem Yerachem .

  52. Harry Maryles says:

    The real travesty is not this digusting video, which anyone with even an ounce of common decency would condemn. It is is the climate of hate generated by the vile rhetoric of Charedi politicians in Israel that spurred someone to do it – that is.

    I disagree with your assertion that this or any other ‘prayer rally’ was – or will in any way a positive event.It is based on the clear flasehood that the goverment oif Israel is bent on punishing Limud HaTorah. Anybody whose yeys are open can see that. As does the Charedi leadership themselves – as Jonathan Rosenblum pointed out in that now password protected video. And yet the rabbinic leaders continue to publicly insist that Thye are protesting a government out to jail people for learning Torah. That is so outrageously false, I can’t believe they believe it themselves – let alone organize a rally about it.

    The ads promoting Sunday’s rally in NY say that it is in protest of the Israeli Government threat to jail Yeshiva students who refuse to serve in the military as a matter of religious prinicple. I suppose that makes Hesderniks all RZs who serve in the regular army, all Charedim that increasingly serve in Charedi military units violaters of religious principles too. I cannot tell you how wrong that is.

    You know what would be a major Kiddush HaShem in place of this rally? If the rabbinic leaders got up there on the podium and expressed their hakaros HaTov for the military protection provided by the special soldiers that put their lives on the line daily for the entirety of Israel. And to Daven and say Tehilim on their behalf. But you know as well as I do that this is not going to happen. Instead you will see one condemnation after another of a government that has protected the very people that hate it so much… and who for decades have been a major source of income for their Yeshivos.

    This is about as upset as I have ever been about developments in the Torah world!

  53. Moshe Dick says:

    Comments like “Chaim Moshe”‘s is why the rift is widening between regular jews and the chareidim in israel, soon to be unbridegable.
    To assault the dati-leumi Knesset members for their role in the new law is akin to the orphan who kills his parents and then pleads mercy because he is an orphan. Whenever did the chareidim ever do anything to further the workings of the land they are living on, so they can claim to be the injured party? What is the chillul hashem in codifying sanctions for disobeying the law? Would you have screamed any less if all the money that you are getting from the government is stopped? “screaming to the heavens”? how about the blood of the many Jewish soldiers crying to the heavens for the blood they spilled on behalf of those ingrates?
    Then you are just plain “motzi shem ra” when you accusee the Baiyt jehudi voting for drafting girls or allowing buses on shabbos. These attacks only prove that the chareidim have no case and that only with lies and insults do they even have any voice. Lies by the bushelfull such as “the governemt has trampled again and again on religious values”. Yeah, by funding the yeshivos and kollelim by the many millions? by tolerating draft dodging for half a century? The chareidim can only whip up their gullible members by asserting the big lie: “we are persecuted, the medinah is oppressing us,etc” And, of course, the opposite is true.
    It is a sad day when the rift between jews is caused by the ingratitude of one segment to their brothers. By turning their back on the rest of us , the chareidi world is sinking into the abyss and I fear, will cause them great tragedy.

  54. SA says:

    One of the most ironic things about all this is that this new draft law is actually an effort by the Israeli government to *accommodate and protect* lomdei Torah to the extent possible against the predations of the High Court of Justice. Because as one leftist commentator noted recently in Haaretz: If we want real “equality of the burden” then — just do nothing. Because there is a defense law on the books that says everyone gets drafted at 18, and if you don’t you go to jail (whoever you are).

    There is a clause in there that says that the defense minister has the right to exempt people at his discretion from service — and it is under THAT clause that full-time lomdei Torah have been exempt the whole time. That was the clause that has suffered repeated challenges to the High Court over the past 20 or so years, until the court finally ruled that the way it was being applied (to exempt so many thousands) was no longer reasonable. That’s why they needed the “Tal Law,” which was also nixed by the court two years ago, reverting the legal situation back to the old, everyone-at-18 defense law. Now the Knesset is trying this new law — and whatever passes, by the way, may STILL be struck down by the High Court of Justice when challenged, as it for sure will be.

    So what’s been going on all this time is a political effort to provide coverage for lomdei Torah against the dry wording of the current law. Yet Haredi politicians are either condemning this effort or refusing to cooperate.

    I worked for eight years at a major Haredi newspaper that I will not name. I left several years ago, but I still keep in touch with people there and just this week I stopped into their office and had a conversation with one of their senior people about the rally, the draft, etc.

    Obviously we disagreed about a lot, but at the same, this man did remark, “One thing I *can* say is that the Haredi community is ill-served by its politicians. They don’t honor the public they are meant to represent.”

    And we both agreed, by the way, that the best way out of this mess would be for the IDF to become a volunteer army. I still think that’s the way to go. Modern warfare demands more brainpower than manpower. And then all this emotional baggage, horrifying rhetoric and time-wasting efforts to square the circle could stop.

  55. Chaim Moshe says:

    And yet the rabbinic leaders continue to publicly insist that Thye are protesting a government out to jail people for learning Torah. That is so outrageously false, I can’t believe they believe it themselves – let alone organize a rally about it.

    It is absolutely true. Fact: If the quotas are not met, all those studying Torah (other than whatever number they decided upon) will be subject to the same fate as the draft-dodger on the beach – up to two years in prison.

    I suppose that makes Hesderniks all RZs who serve in the regular army,

    Religious Zionists have different religious principles than Charedim. Is that not obvious? For instance, the “Religious” Zionist party does not believe it needs to heed RZ rabbis regarding political issues. It believes it should stay in the government for anything and everything except giving up the smallest parcel of land. They have completely, but completely, lost their way.

    all Charedim that increasingly serve in Charedi military units violaters of religious principles too.

    If the govt. will enforce a draft against Yeshiva boys, no Charedi will serve. Guaranteed.

    If the rabbinic leaders got up there on the podium and expressed their hakaros HaTov for the military protection provided by the special soldiers that put their lives on the line daily for the entirety of Israel. And to Daven and say Tehilim on their behalf.

    Yeah, just like the RZ did when the IDF kicked them out of Gush Katif.

    Instead you will see one condemnation after another of a government that has protected the very people that hate it so much…

    They’d be much happier if all the smelly dossim got up tomorrow and left the country, so the rest could finally be outnumbered by the Arabs.

    and who for decades have been a major source of income for their Yeshivos.

    It is all politics. Ask the Likud if they think it was worth whatever minuscule portion of the budget it cost to fund the Yeshivos so that they could be in power since 1977.

    is why the rift is widening between regular jews and the chareidim in israel, soon to be unbridegable

    You mean between the regular Jews and the Zionists.

    Whenever did the chareidim ever do anything to further the workings of the land they are living on, so they can claim to be the injured party?

    To begin with, they keep Torah and mitzvos there. There just *might* be some mention in the Torah of the connection between holding on to the land and keeping them. Besides, no Charedim have jobs? Charedi Torah centers don’t bring in millions of dollars annually? Charedi society doesn’t attract olim? Baalei Teshuvah?

    What is the chillul hashem in codifying sanctions for disobeying the law?

    That’s a very silly comment.

    Would you have screamed any less if all the money that you are getting from the government is stopped?

    The atzeres tefillah would not have happened in that event, no.

    how about the blood of the many Jewish soldiers crying to the heavens for the blood they spilled on behalf of those ingrates?

    They didn’t spill it on behalf of all those smelly, dirty, ingrate, despised, old-fashioned, fanatic Charedim.

    Then you are just plain “motzi shem ra” when you accusee the Baiyt jehudi voting for drafting girls or allowing buses on shabbos.

    I didn’t. The fact is that Uri Orbach said he would negotiate a trade – public transport for less commerce on Shabbos. And the fact is that Yesh Atid’s platform calls for a draft of all girls. Just wait – it will happen next Knesset session and Bayit Yehudi won’t quit the govt.

    Lies by the bushelfull such as “the governemt has trampled again and again on religious values”.

    No, by passing laws such as the Shmad adoption law. Thank you, Dov Lipman.

    by tolerating draft dodging for half a century?

    Why do you think that is? Because they love the Charedim so much? It is because they have created a State which in some ways is the biggest Chillul Hashem in history in its rejection of Hashem and the meaning of Judaism and with which the Charedim have deep, unbridgeable philosophical disagreements. The unstated agreement is that Charedim largely agree not to butt heads, stay in their ghettos as in the Diaspora, and the Chilonim get to run their secular state and keep it that way. Lapid wants to change the rules, fine. But the price of accelerated integration of Charedim at a pace they do not want, should it happen, will be an unequivocal, insistent, vocal and very annoying demand of moving the State toward the rule of halachah and away from the evil Supreme Court at a pace much quicker than the Chilonim might like. No rights to Charedi services without obligations toward the Charedi vision of the state. No more live and let live. The modus vivendi is over. There will be mass demonstrations in front of every movie theater. Shopping centers open on Shabbos will be picketed and Charedim will demand laws to shut them down. The stadium of every sports team that plays on Shabbos will be clogged with demonstrators. Every treif restaurant will be vigorously picketed by a quarter of a million Jews. The Chilonim, I suspect, are very happy not to have to pay that price.

  56. Chaim Moshe says:

    The draft-dodging has been tolerated because there is a modus vivendi: Charedim live as they wish, as they have in galus, and the Chilonim live as they wish. If the Charedim are forced to integrate at a pace quicker than they want, the Chilonim will be forced to concede ground toward the Charedi vision of the state at a pace much quicker than they want. Expect a quarter of a million Jews in front of every movie theater, every treif restaurant, every shopping center open on Shabbos. Demanding Charedi service means meeting obligations toward their Boss – Hakadosh Baruch Hu.

  57. Baruch Gitlin says:

    I think this is a very positive article, and I don’t want to quibble. But I do want to ask the following question.

    The article states: In looking out at the crowd, you knew that the cheap pandering of Yesh Atid to the worst instincts of the public was offset by something bigger and longer lasting.

    Further, I quote the following give and take in one of the comments: If you want to “blame” someone for the advent of Yesh Atid you can start with the Chareidi parties. They abdicated their responsibility, in 20 years as kingmakers, to take care of the needs of their constituents.

    [YA – This is a key point. I wouldn’t disagree in the slightest, but you haven’t provided half the picture. All the parties who were cooperating with the growth of the “system” saw what it was producing, and gladly participated in return for votes. They share equally in the blame Maybe more so, because they could see what was coming, unlike the charedi public that was brought up for successive generations on untruths – or more accurately, arguments that were once true, but had ceased to be operative. What some in the Israeli public have done is to put all the blame on the addicts, without assigning any to the drug-producers. That is morally short-sighted.]

    I am one of those members of the Israeli public that voted for Yesh Atid. I did so for many reasons, including but not by any means limited to a desire to see a change in the system of unlimited army deferments for yeshiva students. Like Menachem Lipkin, I think the haredi parties deserve a lot of the blame for the current situation by refusing to engage in any kind of reasonable negotiation to change the status quo, or to even recognize the unfairness implicit in the status quo. I also agree with Rabbi Adlerstein that the other parties have acted as enablers, exploiting this issue for votes but failing time and time again to actually address the issue in any meaningful way. Special kudos in this area go to Ehud Barak, who based what seemed like his entire campaign agenda in 1999 on an anti-haredi platform, then proceeded to pass the Tal law, which did more to codify the system than to reform it.

    Now my question: Is it possible to advocate, and then move to implement, a change in the status quo on army service without being considered an anti-haredi demogogue? It seems to me that Yair Lapid has been fairly careful to avoid the kind of demogoguery that his father engaged in. But lets leave Lapid aside for a minute. What about Bennett? He has been subject to the same vilification as Lapid, yet he did not even campaign on this issue, he has simply supported it. I’m looking for that place where a person can oppose the haredi position yet not be considered to be “pandering to the worst instincts of the public.” As a member of that public, I don’t think my “worst instincts” were pandered to. I think a party came along with a reasonable platform of change, on this and many other issues, and I voted for that party.

    To summarize, I don’t see where the people that claim to speak for the haredi world leave much room for a person to oppose the haredi position on this issue without being insulted, slandered, and lumped in with the worst enemies of the Jewish people. If there is such a place on the political spectrum to oppose the status quo without being considered an enemy of the haredim or a cheap panderer, I’m curious to know just where that place is.

    [YA – Not much about this that I could disagree with. Not the analysis, and not the frustration. I took aim not at the original goals of those who wanted to see some effective change, but in the recent hard-line of Yesh Atid in demanding criminalization, which produced the energized and united push-back. Anyone could have anticipated what would happen next – and many did.]

  58. Tzedek Yisrael says:

    “I hope that I, my children, and all my descendents will merit to be among the yoshvei beis Medrash. Today, however, I would like nothing more than to be able to reach out to all the “yoshvei kronos” and tell them, “I am so proud that you are our brothers. Thank you.”

    Frankly Rabbi, this is the problem. Your statement shows you believe there is a difference in spiritual/moral level between yoshvie beis Medrash and boys fighting to protect Jews. You are grateful, and that’s nice, but you look at this as biddei-eved for “your” descendants.

    No Jew should ever want or desire to take up arms – it should pain us. But when faced with a diabolical enemy who would destroy us, is it possibly A GREATER VALUE, A L’HATCHILA VALUE, for a G-d fearing, Torah-learning, strong Jewish young man to be ready, willing, and able to take up arms to protect Jews when called upon?

    Come on Rabbi! Shed the apologetics! Be honest! Amend your statement to, “I hope that I, my children, and all my descendents will merit to live in a time of peace when they can spend every waking moment learning in the beis Medrash. Today however, when we are surrounded by blood-thirsty enemies, I hope that I, my children, and my descendants bravely and with trust in G-d make themselves available to take up arms in the defense of our Jewish brothers, sisters, and children.”

    [YA – Nope. That IS what I meant. And I’ve said it before.]

  59. SA says:

    Chaim Moshe, what you are suggesting is interesting, but so far the only proposed responses of the Israeli Haredi leadership to being “forced to integrate at a pace quicker than they want,” is to A) Happily refuse and go to jail (where relevant) B) Happily refuse, forgo government funding, and seek to replace it with fundraising abroad (where relevant) or C) Leave the country.

  60. Steve Brizel says:

    R Adlerstein wrote in part:

    “Whoever it was who produced the video – and anyone who stands behind it – detracted from that moment. The video’s depiction of the government, the IDF, the police as “devarim bateilim” plain and simple is obscene, and on par with the Eidah ha-Charedis’ infamous parading of protesters in concentration camp uniforms”

    Can anyone who was the Asifa today compare the atmosphere, which I heard was only Tefilah and the recitation of Tehilim with the overheated rhetoric that was described by R Adlerstein?

  61. Yaacov says:

    You answered a request for the video which responded to the shameful rally and shameful attitude of the ungrateful chareidim by saying that you would post it. But you haven’t yet. So here it is again. Please post. What are you waiting for?

    [YA – Where have you been? I posted it three days ago.]

  62. Baruch Gitlin says:

    [YA – Not much about this that I could disagree with. Not the analysis, and not the frustration. I took aim not at the original goals of those who wanted to see some effective change, but in the recent hard-line of Yesh Atid in demanding criminalization, which produced the energized and united push-back. Anyone could have anticipated what would happen next – and many did.]

    I agree that criminalization was a big mistake, giving fuel to the hard-liners, providing grist for the propaganda mill, and setting up an enforcement nightmare if and when the time comes. There may indeed be a legitimate legal hurdle in legislating separate enforcement systems for haredim and non-haredim, but I can’t believe this couldn’t have been addressed in some creative way, especially since the entire law is based on recognizing a distinction between the two population groups.

  63. Chaim Moshe says:

    There may indeed be a legitimate legal hurdle in legislating separate enforcement systems for haredim and non-haredim

    Originally it was thought there was, but in the Shaked committee it emerged that there is no such hurdle. (Not that that stopped MK Lipman from falsely asserting in a recent interview that this was the reason Yesh Atid insisted on criminal sanctions.)

  64. Steve Brizel says:

    Now that the bill that was before the Shaked Committee is the law of the State of Israel, and without the same being deemed the Israeli equivalent as violative of free exercise of religion, why don’t the Charedi yeshivaleit simply file applications for exemptions in the same manner as anyone else seeking an exemption? The bureaucracy required to review every such application alone will create huge issues of how feasible such a law is from an administrative POV.

  65. Steve Brizel says:

    Can anyone estimate what was the composition of those who attended the Atzeres Tefilah in NYC? Were the attendees primarily Chasidishe ( Satmar) or were there large contingents of attendees from Lakewood, Baltimore, etc?

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