The Haredi publication Yated Ne’eman (Israel) is strongly identified with the Haredi (Ultra Orthodox? Super Orthodox? Mega Orthodox?) Lithuanians in Israel (it was founded by the late Rav Shach), and as such adheres to the strictest rules about everything (you’re not allowed to read it on Shabbat without an eruv).
Which is why the media watch site Ice thought it was pretty funny to see a picture of a pepperoni pizza on the recipe page of Yated, with heaping layers of mozzarella cheese sloping lustily over a bed of sausage slices.
A call to the paper’s editorial offices resulted in utter bewilderment. They certainly do employ a kind of kashrut supervisor, who makes sure there are no women in any of the pictures, for instance. But the graphic designer picked the pizza image from stock, to accompany a kosher pizza recipe, and, coming from a social background where the very concept of pepperoni pizza does not exist, grabbed the image without giving it a second look. And the mashgiach, coming from the same background, didn’t catch it.
The folks at Yated also added that they received no complaints from their readers about the offending delicacy.
If a pepperoni pizza is served up on the pages of Yated Neeman and nobody notices, is it really traif?
About the Author: Yori Yanover has been a working journalist since age 17, before he enlisted and worked for Ba'Machane Nachal. Since then he has worked for Israel Shelanu, the US supplement of Yedioth, JCN18.com, USAJewish.com, Lubavitch News Service, Arutz 7 (as DJ on the high seas), and the Grand Street News. He has published Dancing and Crying, a colorful and intimate portrait of the last two years in the life of the late Lubavitch Rebbe, (in Hebrew), and two fun books in English: The Cabalist's Daughter: A Novel of Practical Messianic Redemption, and How Would God REALLY Vote.
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