Religion and State in Israel – July 20, 2009 (Section 2)

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Religion and State in Israel

July 20, 2009 (Section 2) (continued from Section 1)

If you are reading in email or RSS feed, please click here to read ONLINE

Editor – Joel Katz

Religion and State in Israel is not affiliated with any organization or movement.

Haredi flyers incite against Hadassah hospital

By Ronen Medzini July 20, 2009

Walls of haredi neighborhoods of Jerusalem have been plastered with provocative street posters – pashkevils – over the past few days, since the case of the mother suspected of starving her three-year-old son has become public knowledge.

The instigative posters and flyers all make serious slanderous accusations against the Hadassah Ein Kerem Hospital in the capital, which has been treating the toddler, accusing it with acts similar to the Nazi horrors of the Holocaust.

One poster’s title read “Hadassah Ein Kerem 2009 – A modern-day Dr. Mengele”.

Mother must undergo a psychiatric evaluation within 24 hrs

Gevalt! Editorial July 17, 2009

Perhaps we need a state commission to tell us not only why a volatile minority of hassidic sects periodically runs amok – but also how to discourage the culture of extreme insularity that lies at the root of their self-perpetuated estrangement.

Haredim of all sects unite against perceived vilification

By Matthew Wagner July 20, 2009

Out of a deep feeling that the secular public is out to vilify and persecute them, the entire Haredi public – from the most extreme and insular hassidic sects to the most mainstream elements – formed a united front over the weekend to support the Jerusalem mother who allegedly starved her three-year-old boy.

…The sudden unification of all streams of haredi Judaism also represents a unique, rare situation. It’s rare for Toldot Aharon, which totally rejects any cooperation with the Zionist entity, to turn for help to more moderate elements of haredi Jewry.

But in the current crisis, haredi figures such as Deputy Health Minister Ya’acov Litzman of the Gerer hassidic sect and public relations agent Dudi Zilbershlag of the Seret-Viznitz Hassidic sect, who are ideologically at odds with more insular sects like Toldot Aharon, were enlisted to help negotiate with the authorities.

“Just as I need to go to the grocer to buy food even though I may not agree with his opinions,” said a spokesman for the Eda Haredit, “I also recruit the aid of people who know how to deal with the media and the state officials when I need to.”

Persecuting the Haredim

By Dudi Zilbershlag July 19, 2009 Opinion

Anyone looking for reinforcements to the claim that Israel is home to an anti-haredi campaign of persecution got what they were looking for, big time, with the story of the mother who allegedly starved her son.

Heavy price to pay

By Gadi Taub July 16, 2009 Opinion

In Herzl’s and Ben-Gurion’s view, the State is the tangible expression of Jewish independence.

Yet in the eyes of the Haredim, the State constitutes a foreign regime, and just like in the Diaspora they try to get as much as possible out of it, while at the same time viewing it as a despicable force, whose future and stability are not a Jewish concern.

Family uses posters to claim ‘blood libel’ in case of mother accused of starving child

By Yair Ettinger July 16, 2009

The first sign of the family’s intention was on Sunday, when they sidestepped a court-imposed gag order and instead engaged in the time honored ultra-Orthodox tradition of local community reportage via wall posters or pashkavilim – a common site on the bulletin boards and walls that line the streets of religious neighborhoods like Jerusalem’s Mea Shearim, where she lives.

What about the Haredim’s rights?

By Yishai Schechter July 19, 2009 Opinion

So, why was the case handed over to the police? What do police investigators have to do with the personality disorders of a sick woman, who happens to be five-month pregnant?

What will they be investigating exactly? Why is the treatment of this woman not being handled by the welfare authorities, which are the natural, legal branch for treating her?

…Why were the police waiting for her upon leaving the welfare offices, contrary to the position of mental health officials, and arrested her in front of the press?

Where are the women’s organizations when it comes to haredim? Where are the human rights groups?

Jerusalem mayor orders civil suits against Haredim

By Ronen Medzini July 19, 2009

Jerusalem Mayor Nir Barkat instructed the city’s legal counsel to file civil lawsuits against ultra-Orthodox residents following the violent haredi riots in the capital.

Last week the mayor suspended all municipal services to the haredi neighborhoods Geula and Mea Shearim in light of the protests.

Collective punishment against Haredim is unacceptable

Haaretz Editorial July 17, 2009

[Mayor Barkat’s] hasty announcement was a mistake. Both neighborhoods are inhabited by tens of thousands of people, of which only a tiny minority participated in the violence. There is no reason to punish the many for the sins of the few.

Haredi violence in Jerusalem abating

Haredim: No violence expected

Photos of Haredi demonstrations/riots

J’lem mother released to house arrest

Rav Sternbuch’s letter regarding the riots

Jerusalem braces for violence as Haredi mother due in court

J’lem mayor halts services to ultra-Orthodox neighborhoods after another day of violence

City suspends services to Haredi neighborhoods

Barkat shuts down Mea She’arim and Geula welfare offices until Haredi violence stops

Jerusalem police chief: Where are the sane rabbis?

By Efrat Weiss July 16, 2009

“I have not heard an outcry by rabbis or dignitaries calling for an end to the riots,” Jerusalem District Police Commander Major General Aharon Franco said.

“There is no sane element in the ultra-Orthodox community that has stood up and spoke out against this phenomenon. Someone needs to wake up because eventually people will get hurt.”

Court convicts Beit Shemesh mother of abusing children

Click here for VIDEO

Israel TV July 20, 2009

Clashes over Sabbath Parking Lots Reveal Divisions among Jerusalem’s Jews

By Nathan Jeffay July 15, 2009

“The reason for the tension is not really friction between the ultra-Orthodox community and Barkat, the secular mayor,” said Hebrew University political scientist Abraham Diskin, an expert on Jerusalem politics.

“The reason is internal tensions within the Haredi community.”

…In Diskin’s formulation, “It’s the Eida Haredit vs. Porush, not the Eida Haredit against the municipality.”

He was referring to Meir Porush, the Haredi candidate who stood against Barkat in the mayoral election, whose faction, United Torah Judaism, now sits in his coalition.

The clashes are also thought to bring an added financial advantage to the Eida Haredit.

“They need this for raising money from abroad. As long as they are in conflict, they are going to their communities in the United States, and people will be more generous,” Shilhav said.

Mir Rosh Yeshiva to Students: Don’t Go to Demonstrations

Haredim protest abusive mother’s arrest

15 detained in Haredi protest over arrest of suspected child abuser

Hagon Rav Nosson Tzvi Finkle Says Going to Demonstrations Is Forbidden

By Dov Gordon July 16, 2009

The Rosh yeshiva of the Mir Yerushalayim, Hagon Rav Nosson Tzvi Finkel Shlita, has written a letter forbidding any “Bnei Yeshiva” from attending any Hafganos in Yerushalayim.

The letter which was hung up in the Yeshiva today, is written in his own handwriting – a move which is very rare for the Rosh Yeshiva Shlita, who has not written a letter in many years due to an illness R”L.

The short 4-line letter is addressed to all Bnei HaYeshiva, and forbids anyone from participating in any demonstrations in any neighborhood – no exceptions.

Religious vs. secular / A Mideast spectacle of a different kind

By Ami Kaufman Opinion July 17, 2009

Ami Kaufman is a former Haaretz editor. This piece originally appeared in his blog, Half and Half.

The secular versus Orthodox saga has been on a constant low flame for decades. There’s the usual protest against something opening on Shabbat, or rock throwing in Mea Shearim, or a Knesset member from the left whining about how much money yeshivas get, or Haredim protesting against new roads because they find ancient Jewish remains at the site. But every few years it seems tensions run on a slightly higher flame.

…The flames are still low, but I don’t know. Is it just me, or is it getting hot in here?

Fierce secular-religious battle rages in Jerusalem’s Kiryat Hayovel neighborhood

Click here for VIDEO

Israel TV July 17, 2009

Israel Bank Chief to Haredi community: Men, women – get jobs

By Motti Bassok, TheMarker July 20, 2009

Bank of Israel Governor Stanley Fischer on Monday called on the heads of the ultra-Orthodox sector in Israel to promote employment among Haredi men and women in order to minimize the prevalent poverty among them.

…According to Fischer, 60 percent of the ultra-Orthodox Jews in Israel were defined as poor in 2008, and that number has only grown since.

“There is an enormous pool of human resources in the Haredi sector, which, harnessed, could contribute another driving force for growth to the economy, while also minimizing the poverty,” he said.

Bet Shemesh Gimmel Approved

By Yechiel Spira July 16, 2009

Despite significant secularist opposition, the Bet Shemesh Council on Wednesday voted 14-3 to approve the establishment of Ramat Bet Shemesh Gimmel approved in Bet Shemesh Council vote.

From the local municipal government perspective, this cleared the last hurdle and Deputy Mayor Rav Dovid Viner explains that with Hashem’s help, the decision will provide a concrete housing solution to additional chareidi families, adding in two years, over 1,000 housing units will hopefully be ready for living.

Viner explained the secularist opposition was formidable, fearing a total chareidi takeover of the area.

Chareidim Want Action – Over 70 Jerusalem Stores Operate on Shabbos

By Yechiel Spira July 16, 2009

The honeymoon between the chareidi community and Jerusalem Mayor Nir Barkat seems to have been short-lived, with askanim calling on City Hall to enforce the law, pointing out at least 70 stores are operating in the Holy City on Shabbos, and this is simply intolerable.

City hall contacted the owner of the new 24/7 store that led to last week’s controversy, and the owner reportedly agreed to close shabbos after inspectors pointed out he lacks an operating license and the city would use all legal means at its disposal to enforce the law.

Shabbos Goy Suit in Tel Aviv Labor Court Unsuccessful

By Yechiel Spira July 17, 2009

A lawsuit filed by goyim employed in Bnei Brak’s Maynei HaYeshua Hospital seeking additional compensation for being the institution’s shabbos goyim was not successful.

The workers took their case to the Tel Aviv Labor Court, demanding payment according to the law which says a Jew who works on shabbos R”L must received additional pay.

The same does not hold true for non-Jews however. The petitioners told the court they view themselves as Jews in the true sense of the word, and therefore, they are entitled to the extra pay.

Religious minister’s staff adopts modesty codes

By Ari Galahar July 20, 2009

The appointment of Yakov Litzman (United Torah Judaism) as deputy health minister has led to a significant change in the ministry’s offices.

Secular female employees working in proximity to the ultra-Orthodox minister have started wearing more modest outfits, and some even keep a shawl at the their desk’s drawer in case they are asked to meet with Litzman directly.

Study: Haredi rejection leads to extremism

By Tzofia Hirschfeld July 14, 2009

A study by sociologist Dr. Shlomi Doron of the Ashkelon Academic College argues that the rejection of formerly secular haredim by the ultra-Orthodox communities in Jerusalem serves as a catalyst for adopting extreme behaviors.

Haredi investors fear ‘ilui’ lost more than $30m

By Nati Toker July 16, 2009

Ultra-Orthodox investors who placed their money with Asher Shapranovich, the manager of Homesh Hashkaot B’Aliya, are afraid their money has gone down the rabbit hole.

…A spokesman for the Tel Aviv District police said they are not investigating the incident. Haredi investors apparently prefer not to let the authorities know the extent of their investments, and have not filed a complaint.

Downtown Jerusalem Food Market to Be Shut for Violating Shabbos Law

By Yechiel Sever July 16, 2009

The Jerusalem Municipality’s Legal Bureau and Licensing Department prepared an administrative closure order this week for a downtown food market that stayed open on Shabbos.

Once the order is signed by Mayor Nir Barkat, it will be immediately issued to the store owner for violating the Work and Rest Hours Law.

Last week the food store, located on Rechov Shlomzion Hamalka near Rechov Shlomo Hamelech, opened its doors with an open declaration it would remain open 24 hours a day, seven days a week. The store did not even install a door.

Haaretz Cartoon by Amos Biderman July 16, 2009 July 16, 2009

“My ban on holding office is over”

“But who’s counting?’

What will former Shas strongman Deri do upon his return to politics?

By Yair Ettinger July 19, 2009

Where exactly will he go? Will he become a senior minister? The leader of a social movement? Maybe even prime minister?

One of his confidants recently said Deri knows exactly what he will do, but this close associate, like others, is keeping things vague with statements like “It will be a big surprise.”

But the most desirable option as far as Deri is concerned – the Shas leadership – is the one that seems least likely at the moment. That one is decided in the home of the party’s spiritual leader, Rabbi Ovadia Yosef.

A-G: Deri’s 7-year wait may not be over

By Jonathan Beck July 20, 2009

After former Shas leader Arye Deri announced last week that he was planning to come back into the political fold now that seven years since the end of his prison term had passed, Attorney-General Menahem Mazuz deflated these hopes Sunday, saying that period should be calculated according to his actual sentence and not according to the time he effectively served.

Group: Deri should wait another year before political return

By Tomer Zarchin July 16, 2009

The Movement for Quality Government yesterday told Attorney General Menachem Mazuz, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and the chairman of the Central Elections Committee, Judge Eliezer Rivlin, that Aryeh Deri should have to wait until 2010, and not next week, for his return to public office.

As 7-year ban ends, Deri mulls forming new movement

By Gil Hoffman July 14, 2009

Deri has hinted to confidants that he will soon form a new socioeconomic movement that will work to bridge gaps between rich and poor and among Jews of all levels of religious observance.

He will announce the movement’s formation after the traditional three-week mourning period that ends with Tisha Be’av on July 30, and perhaps only after the fall holidays that end October 10.

The power to change

By Ron Leshem Opinion July 19, 2009

A healthy state would have denounced Minister Eli Yishai last week. Yishai would not have understood, however: He and many like him, despite their differences in religion, faction and ethnicity, are used to “the system.”

…When Yishai sent Judge Drori his recommendation on official deputy prime minister stationary, he scared him. Innocently or deliberately, he interfered in a legal process, and made a veiled threat that this might affect the judge’s future.

Religion and State in Israel

July 20, 2009 (Section 2) (continued from Section 1)

If you are reading in email or RSS feed, please click here to read ONLINE

Editor – Joel Katz

Religion and State in Israel is not affiliated with any organization or movement.

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