Sunday, January 10, 2010

Tropper is still running a yeshiva in Monsey!?


Kol Yaakov Torah Center - Faculty

Rosh Yeshiva HaRav Leib Tropper, was born on the Lower East Side. He is a grandson of the Valbolneker Iluy, HaGaon HaRav Leib Forer zt"l. After graduating from Yeshivas Rabbeinu Yaakov Yosef at the age of 12 ½, Rabbi Tropper attended the Yeshiva of Philadelphia and then the Telshe Yeshiva in Cleveland. Before reaching his 15th birthday, Rabbi Tropper traveled to Eretz Yisroel to learn in Yeshivas Torah Ore. Rabbi Tropper spent more than five years at Yeshivas Torah Ore, where he developed a close relationship with its Rosh Yeshiva, Maran Harav Chaim Pinchus Scheinberg.[...]


  1. Rabbi Eidensohn, is this a rhetorical questions?!

    I cannot believe that you being so on top of this shanda/ story, and you were not aware that he is still running the Yeshiva Kol Yaakov and Horizon's. Especially after you posted a message from his talmid at Kol Yaakov.

  2. Rabbi Eidensohn, is this a rhetorical questions?!
    I am surprised that a reader of this blog would even ask the question!

  3. I heard that Rav Sternbuch has said that the Rabonim in the US should forbid him from using any title of Rabbi or Rosh Yeshiva due to the chilul hashem he has caused

  4. Recipients and PublicityJanuary 10, 2010 at 9:59 PM

    Not only is Tropper still running his yeshiva Kol Yaakov and its Horizons outreach division, but he is still running EJF de fact, if not de jure as he signs its checks!

    When Tropper went to the notorious melave malka hosted by his disciple Yakov Barros is South Fallsburg, in the Catskills, NY state, he was not merely going to keep up a good face or show defiance. It goes far deeper than that. Tropper went there that night as a symbolic "passing of the torch" of leadership to Barros who also happens to be the boss of the assistant rabbi in the S. Fallsburg synagogue, Chaim Blum who was at around that time appointed the new "director" of EJF, a nephew of R EB Wachtfogel, after Tropper and Wachtfogel were forced to resign as heads of EJF consecutively.

    Follow these simple logical syllogisms:

    1) Yakov Barros (rabbi of S. Fallsburg synagogue & Tropper's ardent disciple)=Chaim Blum (Barros's deputy & nephew of R EB Wachtfogel)

    2) Chaim Blum=EJF's new de jure head (appointed director after resignations of Tropper & Wachtfogel, now the de facto heads of EJF)


    3) Yakov Barros (who does not make a move without Tropper)=(has power over) Chaim Blum EJF's boss as well (since Chaim Blum, appointed by Tropper & Wachtfogel, is also Barros's deputy at S. Fallsburg synagogue).

    This is also true:

    1) Leib Tropper (head of Kol Yaakov & founder of EJF, and now EJF's de facto boss)=Yakov Barros (blind disciple of Tropper and head of S. Fallsburg synagogue)

    2) Yakov Barros (head rabbi of S. Fallsburg synagogue pushed in by Tropper & Wachtfogel=Chaim Blum (assistant to Barros and new de jure director of EJF)


    3) Leib Tropper (former head of EJF and its de facto power behind the curtains)=Chaim Blum (new de jure director, brought in by Tropper and Wachtfogel).

    And then this obvious statement:

    1) R EB Wachtfogel (short lived succesor to Leib Tropper as head of EJF & uncle of Chaim Blum new EJF director)=Chaim Blum (new EJF de jure director, nephew of R EB Wachtfogel)

    2) Chaim Blum (nephew of Wachtfogel and selected by Tropper to be new de jure EJF director)=EJF de jure director (pushed in by Tropper and Wachtfogel, de facto heads of EJF)


    3) R EB Wachtfogel (uncle of Chaim Blum)=EJF director de facto) while his nephew Chaim Blum is the de jure new director of EJF)

    Bottom line, Tropper and R EB Wachtfogel are still de facto running EJF through their de jure disciples and proxies Chaim Blum and Yakov Barros.

    Seems pretty clear.

  5. More interesting to me is how this will all play out.

    Once the money is gone (and that won't take long) is when the real show begins.

    I suspect that Tropper will be persona non grata when the funds dry up (It is after all unlikely he'll find another sugar daddy). There will not not be a whole lot of public excoriation of him by those who took his money (and kept it) but it is unlikely he'll seen publicly in their company ever again. They are hoping the stench will dissipate.

    Good luck with that.

    In the end, the obvious lesson that has been learned but not talked about is that some of our manhigim have a price. We can sing and dance and engage in an endless pilpul about our 'elevated' status, but now we know it's true. The proof is on public display.

    Now we can see who buries their head in the sand (and how they rationalize it) and who doesn't.

    There is an unequivocal stand on the ugliness being taken in Europe. The stench is unbearable over there. Here, it seems we have acclimated ourselves to the filth with many only too happy to bather in it.

    All in all, it's pretty depressing.

  6. Many Monsey yeshivos are actually owned by the rosh yeshiva. They are nothing more than a for-profit enterprise with a non-profit tax ID. I would not be surprised if Tropper owns Kol Yaakov, and therefore cannot be dismissed from his role there.

    --Monsey resident

  7. From HaMekubal:"This past Sunday Ms. Orand was converted by a group of religious zionist Rabbis. To be clear the conversion was done against Israeli Law, and against the stance of the Rabbinate. However, all of that aside, what this conversion proves, is that neither Ms Orand nor R' Tropper could possibly have been involved in the things that audios and videos put forth have suggested.

    To quote one major Rav who was prepared to make severe condemnation of R' Tropper motzei shabbat said, if even R' Troppers own enemies do not believe the evidence than it simply cannot be true. This Gadol stated clearly that if the tapes were true, there was no halachic standing for a B"D to be able to move forward with a conversion. Therefore her very conversion shows that the evidence had to be falsified.

    A great deal has been said against both R' Tropper and thus to him the greatest apology is in order. It appears that despite professional authentication of the audios and videos that they simply cannot be relied upon. Therefore I offer my humble apologies first and foremost to R' Tropper. Second to that it appears that Ms Orand has been wrongly implicated in various things as well, and thus apologies are also extended to her, though I was careful to keep her name off my blog, until this point."

  8. So, is Tropper is still running a yeshiva in Monsey?

    It is Sunday 1/10/10 and I dialed 1.845.425.3863, the # listed at

    No one answered.

    But the messaging system said, and I am writing this exactly:

    "Thank you for calling the Kol Yakov Torah Center Horizons. For the office of the Rosh Yeshiva, Rabbi Leib Tropper press 1."

  9. Recipients and PublicityJanuary 10, 2010 at 11:18 PM

    The housecleaning at EJF has not gone far enough, and the grandstanding by Rabbis Reuven Feinstein in America, Ch Ehrentrau in England and R Stern in Israel cannot, must not, should not, and will not be allowed to cover up the reality that Tropper, still controls and pull all the strings, through Chaim Blum not to mention the same staff at EJF that was hand-picked and appointed by Tropper and still owes its loyalty ONLY to Tropper, not to mention Tropper's control over ALL the purse strings provided for and enabled by Tom Kaplan and his wwife Dafna Recanati. Only Tropper knows where all the accounts, and all of EJF's incriminating skeletons, are hidden.

    The more things "change", the more they stay the same. In Halacha sometimes the only way to kasher a questionable and problematic tainted keli (vessel) that has been used for grossly unkosher or idol worship is to literally break it up (know as "shviras keilim" in halacha and in kabbalah) for its own good that then automatically creates a status of kosher and tahara (purity). It's a form of permitted "euthenasia" of an INANIMATE object. Sometimes even a person who has commited serious aveiros/sins must pay for it with his life to do the requisite teshuva/repentance, and attain the necessary forgiveness from the Allmighty, (see Rambam in Hilchos Teshuva).

    In this case it is Tropper who has illustrated to the whole world, on the global stage of the Internet even, that he is immoral and amoral, a perverse sexual predator, and a corrupter of Torah laws and societal norms and values. Because of this he was forced to resign as head of EJF and even a notable rabbi like R EB Wachtfogel could not step in to salvage what Tropper had contaminated beyond repair with his contemptible abominations.

    Therefore EJF is a 100% tainted and rotten organization to its core. It is impure and tameh, defiled by the unmasking of what Tropper, and others, yet to be unmasked, were doing there behind the scenes, the sexual perversions and blackmailings that no sane Jew let alone rabbis would accept, and much more has not been revealked and has yet to be reavealed.

    EJF is discredted and damaged beyond repair. Its inner soul, if it ever had one, has been destroyed and crushed, just as the spiritual beis hamikdosh was destroyed before the actual edifice came crashing down.

    It is therefore high time for EJF and its desperate rabbinical backers to recognize this fact and reality and put EJF down forever. It is no shame for Jewish institutions to go defunct. The great yeshivas of Sura and Pumbedisa closed down in Babylonia, also follewing discord and machlokes. The great yeshiva of Volozhin was closed down by its own head. Many other lesser institutions have come and strutted their stuff, had their day and said goodbye.

    It is high time for EJF to say goodbye gracefully, or lese face the wrath and humilaitions to come of a Torah and Jewish public and a growing world audience imptatient and fed up with lies, flasehoods, sexual pervserisons, blackmail, trickery, deceipt and distortions all in the name of "higher standards" for conversions.

    EJf=Tropper has now been shown to be a fake and a fraud by none other than Tropper himself. Just as Tropper stepped down, it is time for EJF to step down from the stage of Jewish communal life once and for all.

  10. It is also a time for genuine Torah Jews, who do not touch tainted money, and who do not pervert the Law, to take a stand. It is a time for the harassment by the now tainted Haredi /Yated types to end. People cannot respect them anymore, since they are all in tropper's unclean pocket.
    Dressing like the cossack persecutors of jews from 300 years ago no longer carries any weight. Neither to self and circular honorific titles mean anything. The game is over.

  11. Recipients and PublicityJanuary 11, 2010 at 12:10 AM

    "Eddie said...It is a time for the harassment by the now tainted Haredi /Yated types to end."

    To be exact and fair, the English-language YATED newspaper in America is 100% against Tropper because it's editor-in-chief, a close relative of the late R Elya Svei (one of Tropper's greatest critics who saw through all of Tropper's scoundrelling and shtik) instructed that the YATED not be aligned with Tropper in any way, in spite of Tropper and the Yated both being based in Monsey, NY.

    The YATED does not carry any ads in support of EJF and never has anything to say about either Tropper or EJF. No doubt it must take a lot of heat behind the scenes from big rabbis who are on Tropper's toxic payroll of shochad inc., but the YATED and its editors must be commened for not allowing Tropper to do what he gets away with when it comes to the Jewish Press (openly pro-Tropper and EJF), the English Hamodia that blindly accepts PR pieces and ads concocted by LUBICOM and EJF propaganda czar Menachem Lubinsky, and now in Mishpacha-magazine-for-hire that is just a business that rips off the frum market with its glossy articles and with its attitude of welcoming all sorts of weird groups and often praises and promotes the outright proselytization work of Michael Freund and his Shavei Israel organization, that is just like Tropper and EJF but with a kippa seruga instead of a black hat and kappote of the Tropper backers.

    So not all Haredim are on Tropper's team, and don't forget that the pure Eidah Hachareidis Chareidim and their beth din, the BADATS, with Rav Moshe Shternbuch leading the charge, have openly warned in writing a number of times, that any and all rabbis must stay far away from Tropper and EJF and sent out letters over two years ago to hundreds of RECIPIENTS and have openly made PUBLICITY, as on this blog, against the now revealed and known to all who have eyes and hearts about Tropper's=EJF abominations!

  12. I just visited the 'Mekubal' website and read his post in which he attempts exonerates Leib Tropper by virtue of the fact that Sharon Ormond underwent geirus.

    The words 'denial', 'chilul hashem', 'faulty logic' (and moron) come to mind.

    The good news is that now anyone with any critical thinking skills can judge that for themselves.

  13. Recips - I don't know how many versions of Yateed there are:
    The Israeli Hebrew version has bene quoted by several sources to refer to Tropepr as Har Rav Hagaon, and even "hamavhir" , the one who can clarify al lthe minutae of halacha.
    The online english Deiiah VDibbur, which is Yated's online version has many sections on Geirus. This is basically a propaganda machine for the Vaad Haolami, and the EJF. It sings the holiness of the EJF, and calls them and the Vaad talmidei Hochomim + Yorei Shomoyim. It hasn't ye tbeen deleted. It is also a source of lies agaisnt Rav Druckman. The idea was to blacken the name of the Zionist orhtodoxy, in order to bring the house of disrepute, ie VAAd and EJF into mainstream orthodoxy.


    "The gathering was opened by the chairman of EJF's rabbinical committee, Rav Leib Tropper, who spoke of the need to come together to discuss the issue at hand, saying the very act of coming together in large numbers helps bring salvation. He was followed by HaRav Shmuel Eliezer Stern, who conveyed the blessings of Maran HaRav Eliashiv shlita: "This is a very important conference and we must stand firm in preventing foreign transplants from entering Kerem Beis Yisroel.""

    So, maybe the US franchise has different editorship. Nevertheless, this is a quote direct from the website.

    I agree not all Haredim are on his team, but the Deah v dibbur, which is essentially the Degel official minsitry of Truth publication, is all in with them. Kavod to Rav Shternbuch shlita.

    I know nothing about shavei Yisrael or what they do.
    There are 2 separate issues here, and it is important to distinguish one from another.

    The first is how conversion should be done according to halacha. Proselytisation is liek hwo the Chrisitnas do it, they take thousands to the river and convert them in one go. We can discuss intelelctually if this has been donein Jewish history, and in the TNK, we did in certain wars, and the Persians did in the Megillat Esther. For your information, rav Druckman was dismissed by Mr Olmert, prcisely because he was NOT prosyltising. He was covnerting peopel according to Halacha, and not reaching the numbers that the Kadim people wanted him to.

    The second issue, is the takeover of Halacha, by people who have the blessing of the Lithuianian Yeshiva Leadership, and turning the halacha into a sabbatean cult.

    To illustrate the distinction, imagine we have a debate regarding kashrut , and Glatt kashrut. If one side coems along and sasy all shechita is treif unless it has their superglatt certificate, then the sueprglatt are found to be selling pork in the name of their new superglatt, this is what EJF and the VAad are doing with conversion. They have brainwashed the following int believing it is super glatt covnersion, after all it was foudned by the Gavad of Antwerp. However, whathtye have is a money laundering ring, and a prostitution ring, whereby they trade certificates for issurei Torah.
    This is why the ring has to be exposed. The 5towns article already exposed that their standards are laxer than those of the modern orthodox.
    I repeat, rav Goren did 1 single nullification of a conversion, and all of his piskei halacha were called fake. Yet this is an organisation which is forging halachah and giur as well as mass cancellation of genuine giur.
    If you live by the sword, you also die by it, and the Lithuanian world is now falling on its own sword.

  14. It is puzzling that Tropper has not been abandoned by more of those he duped. I can understand being duped. But I do not understand not cutting ties afterwards.

    Is it that there is still a promise of more money? Is it gayvah and the inability to admit a mistake? Is it blackmail of some sort?

    More frightening is the possibility some of his supporters are not authentically disturbed by his conduct. Most frigtening of all, is the possibility that some of his supporters wear the bagodim of maminim and can learn like talmidei chachomim but they are not truly yirei shaomayim. I can not imagine true yirei shomayim being able to support Tropper and still sleep every night.

  15. Per "mekubal"'s latest post: "I will lay my cards on the Table.

    I think that the ruling of this B"D was a tragic mistake. No I don't consider her a valid Giyoret, nor do I consider Tropper innocent. However, what I think does not really matter. What this B"D has done is give him the help he needed to make his comeback.

    Anybody who attacks him now will be taken down in very short order as someone simply bearing him malevolent ill will, as the words of this B"D can so easily be used to clear him."

  16. Eddie,

    An interesting analysis, the holy UOJ had a very insightful analysis about what you call the Lithuanian world, he calls it Yeshivishism, he defines it as post WW2 American "movement" and traced it to phenomenon of yeshivas transformed from being communities institutes to being Sole Proprietorship Non-profit corporations.

    As it stands now, Tropper is the sole owner of Horizons Bais Achiezer Inc. (EIN 134077539, $8,000,000 on hand in 2008) which is the parent company of Kol Yaakov and EJF, so he still controls rabbis and still writes checks.

    Because of the legal structure of American Yeshivas, When Tropper or Kaplan gives $3,000,000 millions to a yeshiva like the Yeshiva of Staten Island, the proprietor of the yeshiva, in this case r' Reuven Feinstein controls the money.

  17. "I just visited the 'Mekubal' website..."

    If I remember correctly, Mekubal learned Dayanut from Nachum Eisenstein.

  18. Recipients and PublicityJanuary 11, 2010 at 1:24 PM

    "Eddie said...Recips - I don't know how many versions of Yateed there are:"

    The ones you mentioned are NOT connected to the ENGLISH language version published in the USA, in Monsey that only shares the name with it's Hebrew/Israeli sister paper but does not have the same editors and owners and it writes its onw articles with American rabbis in it. In fact this last year it has published a weekly column of divrei Torah base on shiurim of rav Moshe Shternbuch, so certainly that shows who the English Yated feels it's important to be allied with, and it sure ain't Tropper=EJF.

    Yes, the Deah VeDibur site is under R Nochum Norman Eisenstein's control (even though he is "against" blogs and the Innternet now) and it has always been a promoter of EJF's agenda and Tropper's opinions.

    But the English-language Yated, follows the supposed guidelines laid down for it by the late Rav Elya Svei who ensured that his nephew Pinchos Lipshutz became the owner and editor 20 years ago, and from the start, even though Lipshutz is Tropper's neighbor in Monsey, NY, he has withstood any pressures to accept EJF ads or PR pieces, to the credit of many Charedim who support the English language Yated.

    In the USA it has been the Modern Orthodox-run and owned Jewish Press that has been the biggest backer and PR promoter of Tropper and EJF every step of the way since the founding of EJF. The main person writing there for Tropper has been its in-house lawyer and ghost editor Dennis Rapps, and he has received lots of paid-for help from LUBICOM owend by EJF propaganda czar Menachem Lubinsky.

    The English Hamodia has only started publishing the last couple of years and they are working at a a financial loss and are desperate for any ad revenue they can get. It makes them feel choshuv to publcize even EJF drek ads and PR pieces fed to them by high-priced hired gun EJF PR and propaganda czar Menachem Lubinsky. The Modia crowd is a combination of naive and cynical. They are owned by Ger Chasidim and investors and the issue of geirus (Ger and geirus, good combo no?) does not really touch them, they could care less what anyone says about it so they feel EJF hype is just harmless bull in their paper, and they are also naive about the way that Tropper=EJF is able to use the fact that his paid-for ads and PR press releases praising himself and EJF will then be used as fake and fraudulent "haskomas" for himself and EJF as if the Gerrer Rebbes themselves had "written" something for him, which they would never do in any case. So that's it in the USA.

    Now team Tropper is penetrating other publications like the Mishpacha-magazine-for-hire which is just a mercenary business run rag set up and funded by secular Israeli investors who want to make a quick buck and big profit from the gullible Charedi crowd with money to burn on glossy magazines that they crave.

    The Agudath Israel in America commited a great travesty when it allowed its well-respected Jewish Observer magazine shut down about one year ago after a long and distinguished career under its respcted editor Rabbi Nisson Wolpin, many of those articles have became reference works published by AretScroll, because it was a reliable, yet somewhat generalized, vehicle to express Torah-true views with an American Charedi Hashkofa, unlike those based on Modern Orthodoxy (like the Jewish Press), cynicism and naivity (like the Modia) and outright profiteering like Mishpacha-magazine-for-hire (an outright mercenray operation, functioning as gun for hire on any topic or ad).

    Now, EJF has even gone on the offensive as it sends out phoney balony "question-and-answer defenses" of itself and spurious attacks upon other rabbis on its ever-growing enemies lists, as it has now done with the 5 Towns paper against Rabbi Dunner.

    Stay tuned. It is not easy to put the EJF Dracula down to sleep forever.

  19. An interesting analysis from Recips.
    I don't know the scene in the USA too well, so I can't comment.
    It seems that EJF is like the al qaeda of Halacha. They are using bribes, terror = blackmail, and any other means to take control of Orthodox batei din around the world.
    Somebody mentioned that RCA and Rav Schechter of YU shunned them after they saw what a scam it is. I understand that RCA has problems of its own. rabbi Marc Angel, who is one of the Modern Orthodox sephardi (presumably not your type), spoke out against the EJF.
    They also tried to take over the Rabbanut in Israel. That is something that has been happening in recent years. There will always be differneces of opinion between the Dati Leumi Rabbanut and the Agudath Yisroel. I remember in the 80's , Rav Shach criticised some of the covnersion policies of Rav Shapira, when he was Chief Rabbi. I don't belive that Rav Shach annulled any conversions. And even the most anti Zionist Rabbis have never accused the Zionist or MO rabbis of involvement in the kind of sinful behaviour of Troppo's.
    Eisenstein - who is part of the "vaad" came out against Rav Eliahu's conversion of Shannon Orand - but has he said a word of criticism against his sponsor - plebe tropper? How can someone claim to be a dayan, when they are onthe take, and condone acts of Zimri?

  20. Marc Angel quit the RCA because he wanted them to accept his gerus standards that did not meet halacha and the RCA refused to consider his candidates Jewish.

  21. Does anyone know if Tropper was or is still a member in good standing with the RCA?

    Why else would the RCA feel the need to be so apologetic?

  22. It seems Horizons stripped down their website to only the essential address page.

    The page link of the thread topic should now be the Kol Yaakov faculty page:

    An interesting if mysterious development.


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