Editor – Joel Katz
Religion and State in Israel is not affiliated with any organization or movement.
By Nehemia Shtrasler Opinion www.haaretz.com October 7, 2010
The solution is to draft Haredi teens to ordinary army service just like other Israelis.
It is unthinkable that they be allowed to serve only where there is no chance of injury, or death, in battle. That would be absolutely unfair.
If that can't be done, then at least Galant's suggestion is better than Steinitz's. If we go Galant's route, the Haredim would both develop professions and serve in the army, too, which is still the great melting pot of Israeli society.
By Aryeh Tepper www.jidaily.com October 4, 2010
Profound changes have been occurring in the officer ranks of the Israel Defense Force, and not everybody is happy about them; some, in fact, are downright alarmed.
...Are "the religious" taking over, as some have direly predicted? Participants at a recent conference at the Begin-Sadat Center for Strategic Studies were all agreed that the fears are unfounded: the Israeli army is not about to become the long arm of rabbinic law.
By Malkah Fleisher www.israelnationalnews.com October 10, 2010
This refusal to serve in the army has not only prevented many Hareidi men from being accepted or eligible for work, but is also a sore point among secular Israelis, who frequently chastise the Hareidi public for not taking equal responsibility for the welfare of the country and citizenry.
Yet with the advent of Nahal Hareidi, men who are interested in doing army service – and receiving educational and vocational training – can now take part under strict religious conditions. Religious Zionists account for 30% of the soldiers, but the remaining 70% come from Hareidi homes.
By Rabbi Hershel Billet Opinion http://thejewishstar.wordpress.com October 8, 2010
People should realize that Nahal Haredi plays a vital role in Israel, bridging a major social gap. Many people see the haredi sector as only “takers” who do not share their most precious possessions, their sons, with the Jewish state that supports them and protects them.
Nahal Haredi partially fills that void and demonstrates that there are haredim who fight for Israel. The graduates of the Nahal Haredi will be gainfully employed, earn a living, and contribute to the Israeli economy.
By Yair Altman www.ynetnews.com October 7, 2010
A letter being distributed throughout the West Bank is calling on Jewish settlers not to enlist in the IDF due to the appointment of Maj.-Gen. (ret) Yair Naveh as next deputy army chief.
[T]he letter, which is signed by Rabbi Yossi Dayan, whose son Hananel refused to shake hands with former Chief of Staff Lt.-Gen. Dan Halutz a few years ago.
By Sammy Hudes www.shalomlife.com October 4, 2010
“Women were created in the image of God as well,” said one of the organizers, Rona Orovano on a loudspeaker. Her shirt read the words, “This is what a Jerusalem feminist looks like.” Signs in the crowd read statements such as “Jerusalem is not Tehran, the silent majority is awakening.”
Despite the criticisms, Orovano maintained her strong message. “We came here to protest against the deterioration in the status of women in Jerusalem,” she said.
“Things are getting worse for women every day. There is separation on buses. Pictures of women are removed from advertisements. Women being barred from streets, and sidewalks being separated was a red line we had to protest against.”
By Tamar Rotem www.haaretz.com October 8, 2010
This year the Sikarikim threatened not to allow women and "marginal" youth to attend the celebrations at all (the High Court of Justice prohibited the separation and the police removed the barrier ). However, among the Hasidim, they yielded, preferring to cancel the street events.
"There are things against which it is still illegitimate to fight, but people have begun to lift their heads up, without a doubt," says an observer close to the moderate factions. "Another wretched Shoeva celebration like this, and we will have lost."
By Kamoun Ben-Shimon www.jpost.com October 9, 2010
Adds Anat Hoffman, a former city councilwoman and current director of the Center for Religious Pluralism, which is allied with the Reform Movement,
“Why do these issues always focus on the attempt to police women’s bodies? Because women are a weak link in society, and so a woman’s body is an easy target for fanatics, all over the world.”
Even some of the most fervently anti-Zionist leaders now tell The Report – although on condition of anonymity – that only intervention by the reviled state can restore a modicum of calm to the haredi neighborhoods.
“The police have to get involved. They have to arrest these people, to put an end to this madness,” says Eliezer.
By Peggy Cidor www.jpost.com October 8, 2010
For the first time, haredi leaders considered “moderate” have collaborated with the police, while at the same time there are increasing indications that many of the haredi residents themselves are fed up with the extremists’ laws. According to inside observers, young couples are leaving the neighborhood slowly and quietly, and not just because they cannot afford the expensive housing.
As for [Rachel] Azaria, the fact that she and her friends, many of them religious women and men, have managed to return the public space of the haredi neighborhood to Israeli society is a giant step forward. “Mea She’arim is part of Israel again – that’s what’s important,” she concludes.
By Rabbi Steven Pruzansky Opinion www.jewishpress.com September 28, 2010
Rabbi Steven Pruzansky is spiritual leader of Congregation Bnai Yeshurun in Teaneck, New Jersey
The trends started several years back but became exacerbated in the recent past.
There are Israeli communities these days with restaurants that have no public seating, lest it lead, I suppose, to mixed eating. It is a terrible infringement on normal family life, part of which involves families eating out together or husbands and wives taking time together.
The Mehadrin bus lines that have become popular furthered this trend, with separate seating for women in the back (bad symbolism, there).
By Hagai Einav www.ynetnews.com October 7, 2010
Much of the criticism leveled at Israel's haredi community pertains to the issue of employment. Yet at this time, more haredim choose to shatter the stigma and not only focus on Torah studies, as they increasingly seek to join the workforce.
...However, one of the difficult problems faced by haredi students is the fact that as opposed to their secular counterparts, they did not study the "core subjects" at an early age, topped by English and math.
By Yair Ettinger www.haaretz.com October 7, 2010
[T]he funeral, expected to be attended by thousands, including the most important of rabbis, is not for the mortal remains of mere men, but for 11 Torah scrolls damaged in a fire in the synagogue of the Vyzhnytsia hassidim, on the first day of Sukkot.
The scrolls will be buried in special urns of clay, amid special prayers and speeches by the rabbis.
By Jonah Mandel www.jpost.com October 8, 2010
A passionate internal debate among some of the Chief Rabbinate’s most senior members has the potential to cause a dramatic hike in the price of kosher hotdogs in Israel.
Safed Chief Rabbi Shmuel Eliyahu, who is also part of the 16-member Chief Rabbinate Council, stirred up a maelstrom when, during his weekly Monday night lesson, he told students that some of the major hotdog producers in Israel were using non-kosher ingredients, including pig skin, for their products’ casings, which are sold under seemingly adequate kashrut supervision.
By Nathan Jeffay www.thejc.com October 7, 2010
A boycott campaign is mounting against Israel's most prestigious kosher certification.
With dozens of different kashrut seals available in Israel, hechsher snobbery is rife. Not everyone accepts every supervision label and some engender more loyalty than others.
However, virtually everybody regards "Badatz Eida Hacharedit" stamp as the gold standard, and those conscious of kashrut widely strive to buy most of their products with a Badatz seal.
By Navit Zomer www.ynetnews.com October 6, 2010
The organic and health food supermarket chain Eden Teva Market, controlled by Alon Holdings Blue Square-Israel and Dudi Weisman is for the first time turning into a kosher supermarket under the supervision of the Chief Rabbinate on Sunday.
www.jerusalemkoshernews.com October 10, 2010
The Chief Rabbinate of Israel last week withdrew objections to the establishment of a new agency under the auspices of the Ministry of Religious Affairs. Such an agency would oversee the activities of the nation’s mashgichim operating under the umbrella of the local rabbinates nationwide.
[Opinion] The bill has to pass the ministerial legislative committee today, and then the Knesset, where it must pass three votes to be passed into law. Then, it must be implemented and then one must hope the tender for the manpower agencies and selection of competent mashgichim is not tainted by payoffs and foul play, as is the case in many other state-run operations.
By Noam Bar www.haaretz.com October 7, 2010
The Meitav investment firm will be acquiring all of the operations of Hilat Shoham, an investment company with NIS 750 million in assets under its management.
Other than Gaon, the remaining interests in Hilat Shoham are held by members of the ultra-Orthodox community.
By Kobi Nahshoni www.ynetnews.com October 10, 2010
The Movement for Freedom of Information has demanded that Israel's Chief Rabbinate divulge the names of mohels (ritual circumcisers) who were found to have performed botched circumcisions.
The movement claims that the Rabbinate is violating a High Court of Justice order by keeping the names secret, and petitioned the court to find the violators in contempt and subject them to the resulting fines and sentences.
By Kobi Nahshoni www.ynetnews.com October 6, 2010
An inter-ministerial committee for issues pertaining to mohels decided to suspend the mohel suspected of performing circumcisions which do not meet halachic requirements.
www.jpost.com October 6, 2010
Although the mohel was suspended, the Rabbinate ruled that all of the previous circumcisions performed by the mohel are considered kosher.
By Yair Ettinger www.haaretz.com October 4, 2010
The issue was made public two weeks ago, when the ultra-Orthodox website Ladaat.net posted an item about a number of complaints lodged by parents against the mohel, who the site said is affiliated with the Chabad Lubavitch movement.
Weisberg said he has examined several babies and toddlers whom the mohel circumcised over the past few years, and in some cases found signs of "cosmetic flaws" in the penis.
By Tomer Velmer www.ynetnews.com October 4, 2010
The Education Ministry's chief scientist, Dr. Gavriel Avital, was dismissed on Monday following a scandal-filled trial period of less than a year.
Sources familiar with the affair said Avital was fired over past statements he had made, in which he questioned evolution and the global warming theory.
By Ezra Resnick Opinion http://norighttobelieve.wordpress.com October 8, 2010
[Yitzhak Levy's, a former education minister of Israel] attempt to frame the issue as “trying to impose Western culture on Jewish culture” is especially ludicrous.
Like it or not, English is essential nowadays for virtually all knowledge-based enterprises — the majority of scientific papers are published in English, and it is the most popular language on the World Wide Web, to name just two examples. And how exactly ismathematics “Western?”
By Jonah Mandel www.jpost.com October 5, 2010
Six of Gush Etzion’s most prominent rabbis visited the torched mosque in Beit Fajar on Tuesday to apologize for the destruction allegedly caused by Jewish vandals, and to deliver new Korans to the local imam in place of those burned in Monday’s pre-dawn arson attack on the West Bank house of worship.
By Ali Waked www.ynetnews.com October 5, 2010
The delegation included Rabbi Lichtenstein from Gush Etzion, Rabbi Menachem Fruman from Tekoa, Efrat's Chief Rabbi Shlomi Rifkin and Rabbi Shlomo Brin from Yeshivat Har Etzion.
By Joseph Nasr www.reuters.com October 5, 2010
"This visit is to say that although there are people who oppose peace, he who opposes peace is opposed to God," said Rabbi Menachem Froman, a well-known peace activist and one of a handful of settlers who went to Beit Fajjar to show solidarity with their Muslim neighbors.
Meorot - A Forum of Modern Orthodox Discourse Tishrei 5771 2010
This article originally appeared in Hebrew in Akdamot 23, Elul 5769 (2009)
This article defines a vision of halakhah and the rabbinate that identifies with modern life and works to advance religious life within Israel and Western societies.
It argues for a halakhah and a rabbinate that is sensitive to Kelal Yisrael, Zionism and Israeli democracy, the interests of women, the handicapped and that can speak to all Jews. It wishes to return Torah its original domain— every aspect of human life.
The author rejects the superiority of halakhic stringency and advocates the use of hiddush to confront the realities of modern life, seeing the former as traditional halakhic methodology.
By Jonah Mandel www.jpost.com October 4, 2010
Tzurba Merabanan, the high institute for Halacha instruction, on Sunday aligned the ranks of the thousands following its curriculum for a five-year study cycle of pertinent daily Halacha issues.
By Akiva Novick www.ynetnews.com October 4, 2010
A new halachic study ruled that seducing an enemy agent for the sake of national security is an important mitzvah, Yedioth Ahronoth reported Monday.
The ruling, made by Rabbi Ari Shvat, was included in the latest issue of "Tehumin," an annual collection of articles about Jewish law and modernity, which is published by the Zomet Institute, a non-profit organization dedicated to seamlessly merging Halachic Judaism with modern Israeli life.
By Lahav Harkov www.jpost.com October 6, 2010
Tzomet's director, Rabbi Yisrael Rosen, praised the study, but told DPA that "women employees of the Mossad are probably not going to come consult with a rabbi" before their missions.
The Tzomet Institute is a non-profit research institute dedicated to merging halacha with modern life.
By Eli Ashkenazi www.haaretz.com October 4, 2010
A prominent Golan Heights rabbi and his son-in-law were arrested yesterday on suspicion of trying to kill a man they say raped the rabbi's daughter.
The rabbi and both family members involved in the fight were also carrying clubs, and two of the men had their faces covered, police said.
By Ari Galahar www.ynetnews.com October 6, 2010
An ultra-Orthodox haredi couple which could not bear children for almost three years was offered a surprising solution recently. The two consulted Rabbi Daniel Zar, who promised them that if the woman removed her wig and replaced her head covering, she would be able to conceive a child within two months.
By Karen Chernick www.greenprophet.com October 5, 2010
Aish HaTorah is expanding its programming on Judaism and the environment by attempting to create an eco-fellowship that will focus on “the Jewish Biblical and traditional requirements for compassionate and sustainable living and how that applies to modern times.”
By R. C. Berman http://lubavitch.com October 8, 2010
Chabad on Campus representatives at TAU, Rabbi (Shay) Yeshayahu and Chava Gerlitzky, have been welcoming students to their Shabbat table every week for three years now. Many of their guests are American students studying at TAU hoping to recreate their Chabad-on-Campus experiences while in Israel.
Jeremy Dery, president of Chabad at TAU’s overseas student activities, posts ads about Chabad’s Shabbat dinners on three bulletin boards in the Carter Building, the home base for overseas students, and at Einstein dorms, where nearly all overseas students live.
www.israelnationalnews.com October 10, 2010
Rabbi Menachem Burstein, head of the Pu'ah Institute that works with Jewish couples with fertility problems, has issued a Halachic opinion that women close to their due dates should not try to advance their child's delivery to Sunday – October 10, 2010.
By Yair Altman www.ynetnews.com October 4, 2010
The central unit of Jerusalem Police arrested Rabbi Yisrael Ariel and Rabbi Doc Stein, both members of the organization 'Sanhedrin,' that called upon settlers and right-wing activists not to recognize the authority of the court system in Israel.
By Greer Fay Cashman www.jpost.com October 10, 2010
Just as the Mimouna festival of Moroccan Jews and the Saharane festival of the Jews of Kurdistan have become national festivals in Israel, so the Sigd Festival which tells of the history of Ethiopian Jewry, is also entering the Israeli psyche as part of the national heritage.
Editor – Joel Katz
Religion and State in Israel is not affiliated with any organization or movement.
All rights reserved.