A Kotel Victory For the Non-Orthodox? Hardly

You may also like...

4 Responses

  1. Y. Ben-David says:

    Although I believe that it is unfortunate that things worked out the way they did in that it was found necessary to create a separate, new Kotel site, it is also unfortunate that you are presenting this as some kind of war with winners and losers.  The fact that you completely reject any kind of motivation other than a cynical, manipulative one on the part of those who pushed for the non-Orthodox site does not speak well for Orthodox ideologists who don’t seem to realize that there are people who sincerely think differently than them, even if objectively they are wrong. I am Orthodox and have no desire to visit the new site but I also am aware that many Jews don’t think like me and that it is not inherently obvious to them that Orthodox is the only “true” path, as indeed you do. Israel is facing many difficult challenges in the world with rising antisemitism and anti-Israel actions around the world, and it is imperative that we try to make peace among ourselves in order to face this, even if it means making compromises we are not comfortable with.
    This compromise is NOT the “thin edge of the wedge” and it does not mark an increased “onslaught” by the non-O movements in Israel, They have little presence on the ground, and I doubt there will be many regular visitors to the new site, which will primarily be for events like Bar-Mitzvah ceremonies or visitors from outside Israel.  I live a few meters from the one an only C congregation in my town which is a suburb of Tel Aviv and they only have tefillot on Shabbat, but there is no daily minyan. Although some 40 years ago the C’s ruled that women count in a minyan, obviously their women are not breaking down the doors of their congregation in order to lay tefillin and read from the Torah. Thus there is no reason to think this marks some new “assault” on the O hegemony in Israel and I don’t think there are grounds for viewing this compromise as some sort of defeat.

    Keeping the peace among Jews is an important value, and the Torah itself mandates that, and since the O Establishment has made its peace with the secular state in the past on things like business establishments opening on Shabbat (UNFORTUNATELY!) for the sake of peace, and this new arrangement at the Kotel can be viewed in the same light.

  2. Reb Yid says:

    Making a prediction is very tough, especially about the future.  It wasn’t just Ben-Gurion who predicted Orthodoxy’s demise–leading sociologists did as well, based on solid institutional and demographic data.  But the world does not stand still and some trends simply cannot be predicted.  In the 1870s it looked as if Reform Judaism was going to completely monopolize American Jewish life.   For much of American Jewish history, Zionism as a political rallying cry had very little traction, and prospects were especially bleak here in the Orthodox community.

  3. lacosta says:

    one could argue that ,at least from a pure haredi hashkafa perspective, any action that perforce recognizes other streams in judaism is a cause for tearing kriya.

    that said there is only one group that [as others in the jewish journal pointed out]  is a true lose-lose.  standard O had to recognize an alternative judaism,  but keeps the classic kotel clean.  non-O groups have a place to celebrate/worship , it will just be ‘kotel-adjacent’.  the true losers are the WoW and their ilk , the ones who want women’s minyans at the classic kotel . since they consider themselves O , they will not want to move , and one can assume that they will go to court , and beyond that , continue to make scenes at the kotel itself as if nothing changed…

  4. Is it possible that certain forms of behavior on the part of a section of the Haredi opposition, i.e., throwing chairs, tossing diapers with (supposed) fecal matter, extreme drown-out whistling, as well as physical-touching violencer, could have contributed to the ‘win’ of the egalitarians?

Pin It on Pinterest