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Mayor Bill de Blasio’s refusal to denounce remarks made last week in his presence at Agudath Israel’s annual dinner has spawned a controversy that is, at least to us, largely beside the point.
During the dinner, Rabbi Yaakov Perlow, the Novominsker Rebbe, publicly condemned the Reform, Conservative and Open Orthodoxy movements, prompting criticism from some of the mayor’s liberal Jewish supporters and a strongly-worded editorial in The New York Times that decried the mayor for his silence in the face of Rabbi Perlow’s speech.
The debate over whether Mayor de Blasio, as the elected leader of all New Yorkers, was wrong in refusing to object to the Novominsker’s remarks cannot be allowed to obscure the fact that the Novominsker, as head of the Agudah, has a responsibility to articulate authentic Judaism’s disapproval of those who preach deviation from our mesorah, or tradition,
No matter how hard some try to reinvent the meaning of words, the divisive ones are not Jews who seek to maintain fealty to the Torah way of life that has been the hallmark of our people for thousands of years – but rather those who urge fundamental changes to our faith.
Even on a practical level, one cannot deny that the experience of the Reform and Conservative movements demonstrates that as long-held beliefs wane, assimilation and intermarriage rise. Adherence to the Torah is the only thing that has sustained Jews through the ages.
We applaud Mayor de Blasio for choosing not to criticize Rabbi Perlow’s remarks. Though initially he said he had not comprehended the content of the speech as it was being delivered, he has maintained his refusal to comment even after being told what was, in fact, said.
The mayor deserves praise for his position, which is consistent with his reputation for respecting religious rights. It would have been the height of arrogance for an elected official to criticize a religious leader for addressing the faithful on a fundamental issue of faith.
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The decision to not publicly light the Menorah in Sydney, epitomizes the eternal dilemma of Judaism and Jews in the Diaspora.
Am Yisrael is one family, filled with excruciating pain&sorrow for losing the 4 kedoshim of Har Nof
What is its message of the dreidel?” The complexity and hidden nature of history and miracles.
Police play down Arab terrorism as mere “violence” until the truth can no longer be hidden.
The 7 branches of the menorah represent the 7 pillars of secular wisdom, knowledge, and science.
Obama obtained NO verifiable commitments from Cuba it would desist from acts prejudicial to the US
No one would deny that the program subjected detainees to less than pleasant treatment, but the salient point is, for what purpose?
For the past six years President Obama has consistently deplored all Palestinian efforts to end-run negotiations in search of a UN-imposed agreement on Israel.
It’s not an admiration. It is simply a kind of journalist fascination. It stands out, it’s different from more traditional Orthodoxy.
For Am Yisrael, the sun’s movements are subservient to the purpose of our existence.
Israelis now know Arab terrorism isn’t caused by Israeli occupation but by ending Israeli occupation
Anti-Semitism is a social toxin that destroys the things that people most cherish and enjoy.
Amb. Cooper highlighted the impact of the Chanukah/Maccabee spirit on America’s Founding Fathers
It seems to us that while the Jewish entitlement to the land of Israel transcends the Holocaust, the Jewish experience during that tragic time is the most solid of foundations for these “national rights.”
Last year the Obama administration sought to minimize civilian deaths from drone strikes by generally requiring that missile attacks be limited to instances where Americans were directly threatened and there was a “near certainty” that no civilians would be killed.
If anything, Operation Protective Edge showed that Israel will not pull punches when it comes to combating terror.
Toward the end of Operation Protective Edge this past summer, the president was unusually vocal about Israel’s so-called disproportionate use of force and alleged lack of compliance with international humanitarian law.
There was no accompanying caption, but the cartoon could not help but feed the anti-Semitic canard that Israel was responsible for 9/11.
An accomplished Torah scholar and ardent adherent of Bobov chassidus, he was renowned for his self-effacing dedication and skills as an international lawyer and law professor
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