The short history of the current conflict begins in 2003, with the anointing of Rabbi Yitzhak Tuvia Weiss - an elderly Belgian Jew who lives in Antwerp and who earned a respectable living as a rabbi and a rabbinical court judge - as leader of the anti-Zionist Eda Haredit community in Jerusalem. In his years as the Gavad (Genius Father of the Court ), pragmatic elements have been shunted aside and radical elements have grown stronger, dragging the sect into a series of struggles, most of them violent failures: against the gay and lesbian community's Pride parades; against opening the Karta parking lot and the opening of the Intel plant in Jerusalem; against the construction at the Barzilai Medical Center in Ashkelon; against the arrest of a mother from the Toldot Aharon Hasidut for starving her son; and more.
In the last of these cases, in 2009, top police officials continued to treat the Gavad with respect due to his being the great rabbi of the generation. But the soothing words they extracted from him at late night meetings remained within the room, while activists around him continued to fuel the struggle in the streets.
At about the same time, a group of Sicarii attacked a busload of ultra-Orthodox children with special needs driving down Mea She'arim Street in the capital. There were no physical injuries but some of the children suffered prolonged psychological trauma, which led representatives of the ultra-Orthodox public to realize that their internal institutions are not enough. They demanded, in no uncertain terms, that the police intervene and do what no rabbi dares to do: suppress the fanatics.