Friday, July 6, 2012

Nachalaot: Summary of what has happened - Rav Tzadok

Guest post by Rabbi Michael Tzadok -

Approximately one year ago a situation exploded in Nachalaot from which the neighborhood is still trying to recover. A pedophile ring(yes the Jerusalem police still believe that it was a ring operating together) was exposed. Six men in total were arrested. Three men have to this point been convicted, one had charges dropped when it was shown that he was not mentally competent to stand trial, one had charges dropped because of evidence contamination and one is still awaiting trial. Police believe that there were between 7-9 people involved based upon pictures(with faces excluded) of adult men raping children that were found at one of the suspects homes(these pictures can be viewed by anyone who is so desirous by going to the police station in the Russian Compound and requesting to see the evidence).

A few months ago a contact I have in the Interpol Child Crimes division who happens to be an Israeli looked into the case for me as a favor. He said two things:
1) The police thoroughly bungled the investigation
2) The level of hysteria that has arisen in the community has made it so that the case can no longer be pursued.

Personally I am of the mind that the first issue lead to the second. The initial mistake that the police made was asking parents who lack the appropriate training to question their children to see if they were abused and by whom in preparation for giving statements. This lead to contaminated evidence. At least in the first round of children coming forward. Which left parents feeling betrayed. Some had gone against Rabbinic orders to talk to police to protect their children. Followed the advice of the police, and then watched those they thought were the abusers going free because of it.

This outrage lead the parents and some of the Rabbis to try to get media attention focused on the situation. Included in this was a rally held on Betzalel to which Mondrowitz perversely organized a counter rally.

With the media attention came some actual help. Yiddish speaking child psychologists and others who could extract information from the children without contaminating the evidence, as well as pressure on the police to try to put a case together. This is what lead to those convictions that have been handed down.

However with the good also came the bad. Numerous people popped from within the community and without that simultaneously blamed the parents for not adequately protecting their children while simultaneously generating hysteria by inventing( and there is no better word for it) wild stories of conspiracy. It started out being a homosexual underground conspiracy. Then it became a homosexual satanist cult conspiracy. Then it became a homosexual pedophile satanist cult conspiracy. It's latest mutation is a homosexual pedophile satanist catholic conspiracy. Yes it did get just that crazy. As the parents of the abused were also being accused of not adequately protecting their children, they began to make claims that "their children were NEVER out of their sight so the pedophiles had to be able to walk through walls or have keys to their homes,"

In aviation they call a situation like this a death spiral. Where one continues to make bad decisions and over compensations that only exacerbate the problem rather than making it better. Because their was a confederated ring of sorts, and because the police could not identify all of the perpetrators on account of lack of evidence, the situation spiraled to the point that it became(and in some instances remains) reminiscent of the Salem Witch trials or McCarthyism in which one became guilty simply by association. Which lead to many many people being falsely accused, based on the most insignificant of connections. You sat next to one of the known perpetrators in shul, you are a suspect. You sat next to the guy who sat next to one of the perpetrators you are a suspect. A neighbor suspect.

For instance the poor woman who was beaten. She used to run Ohel Sarah Immanu, which was the women's conversion program preparing women to go before the now defunct Vaad Linyonei Giyur Haolomi (the conversion B"D that was run under the auspices of Rav Eliashiv). When one of the Dayanim from said B"D was actually convicted, this poor woman became a suspect (not to the police) but to the hysterical public. Since we were dealing with the aforementioned Homosexual-Pedophile-Satanist-Catholic cult, she was also accused of being a missionary and subsequently attacked.

Yes people were falsely accused. Yes some seriously disturbed individuals slandered innocent folk with signs and color collages, and some even took a step of vigilante justice against a 70yr old woman. All of that is true. However, what is also true is that many many children were abused. Some of them too young to ever tell their stories. What is also true is that some of those who were guilty still walk free. What is also true is that there are families that are reeling from the damage done to innocent holy Jewish children. Does any of that justify the hysteria? No, but it makes it understandable how it got started.
--
הרב מיכאל צדוק אלכהן

34 comments :

  1. Shame on you that you let this guy take over your web site. Most reasonable people whould not believe him for the time of day.

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  2. Stan I don't know this tadok guy but please tell us yourdissatisfaction u have with him so we all understand what is going on

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  3. And how do we go from here? What do we do now?

    What is currently being done?

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    1. Dovid that is a good question. Some Rabbis have written letters asking for people to calm down.

      Children are receiving therapy and B"H outside donors have greatly helped with that.

      As of 3mos ago there was still an undercover police presence in the neighborhood especially around the various Ganim and Chedarim in the neighborhood to keep watch.

      Aside from that, I'm not sure that there is much that can be done. The level of hysteria torpedoed investigation. The community there can try to do better when(yes when not if) this tragedy occurs there again.

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  4. The Sarah Vorst part of the story is true, my cousin is from the abused and was in her house (he's old enough to speak.) So....hmmm...

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    1. do you have any verifiable information?

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    2. The testimony of a 10 yr old boy...That's it! He took his mother (my Aunt) around one day to all the places he ever was and was molested. He also claimed to be inside of a church near the Old City (which he also took her near.) Often times he came home (this was over the past few years) with money (20 shekels or more here and there) in his pocket. There are known child molesters working at a store in Yerushalayim where kids go to buy things he said on many occasions these men were also in the churches and places where he was molested...

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  5. Shame on you rav Tzadok for calling Sara Vorst 'a poor woman' , to call her ' a poor woman' is like to call Tropper 'a Tzadik'. That women is evil and like Tropper she tortured converts and use them to arrange sex to her friends.

    I am sure you are familiar with the leaked letter:

    http://lukeford.net/blog/?p=38359

    The Ohel Sarah Imenu Conversion Program

    Her beating could not have happen to more deserving person.

    Her beating and Tropper fall is a prove that hashem avenges those to mistreat converts. and as the Israelis say "kul kalb biji yomo" .

    Her involvement with the molesters is another story which will be told but I guess not by you.

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    1. The above is not the most reliable source of information.

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    2. Daniel,

      I am familiar with several people who have gone through Ohel Sarah Imenu. I am under no illusion that Sarah Vorst made it hard on those candidates. Extremely hard, nor that she was teaching them halakha from a quite Chumradik perspective.

      However, in all the people that I personally know who have gone through that prorgram, I have never once heard accusations of sexual impropriety on her part. Nor that she was "arranging" anything of that sort.

      I knew that Zalman Cohen(a convicted rapist and now pedophile) was involved with the program, but that was more imposed upon it by Rav Eisenstein.

      Yes I do consider her a poor woman. A 70yr old woman who had her home invaded and who was severely beaten by some vigilantes... yes that is bad. Vigilante justice is always wrong. No citizen has the right to take the law into their own hands and be judge, jury and executioner.

      If Sarah Vorst was guilty of something, then it should have been reported to the police so that it could be properly investigated.

      As far as an anonymous letter hosted on a blog that can't seem to make up its mind as to whether he wants to be the world's leading porn reporter or an Orthodox Jewish watchdog site... well yeah, that has no credibility in my eyes.

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  6. The letter is not anonymous it is signed by Nancy Cuevas Guzman which you can easily contact via Facebook. The letter also mentioned rabbi Shaul Farber and rabbi Yosef Malka which are easily accessible.

    rabbi Zalman Cohen the convicted rapist and pedophile was the "life coach" of Ohel Sara Imenu, which means every girl had to go thru him, he was also very close to Sarah Vorst וד'ל , I know for fact that in 2009 she was told about him and she continued sending girls to him, some of the abuses happened in Ohel Sarah Imenu kampus and some in Sara Vorst house. It is hard to believe that it all happened without her knowing about it. nothing about it.

    I hope you know that her mentor rabbi Leib Tropper also was using converts to supply his friends with sex and there are persisting rumors about rabbi Nachum Eisenstein as well.

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    1. I know about Leib Tropper, because despite your earlier claims and those of Luke Ford it was not Failed Messiah who broke that case, it was myself and Rav Eidensohn here.
      I also that that Tropper and EJF had nothing to do with Ohel Sarah Imenu(OSI). OSI was an Israeli organization, run under the auspices of Rabbi Eliashiv and managed by Rabbi Eisenstein.
      I also know that Rabbi Eliashiv, on the word of Rabbi Eisenstein, vouched for Zalman Cohen when various accusations were made against him, and was instrumental in securing his early release for his rape conviction, insisting then that the man had been framed.
      Whether or not Sarah Vorst "heard" accusations against Zalman Cohen I do not know for certain one way or the other. I do know that I would not expect a committed Chareidi woman to go against the Rav that was considered the Gadol HaDor.
      Unfortunately Rabbi Eisenstein has shown himself to have some seriously questionable friends, and when serious criminal charges once again came up against Zalman Cohen, after the EJF debacle, it was my understanding that Rav Eliashiv, when he was done wiping the egg off his face, dismantled both the Vaad L'Inyonei Giur HaOlami and OSI.
      Not for nothing you are quite clearly demonstrating the same sort of guilt by association that is so problematic in this case. Sarah Vorst didn't set up OSI, she simply ran it, it was set up by others(Eisenstein Z. Cohen ect.). Meaning that she was chosen to run it. That does not make her a knowing accomplice.

      To be honest, since some of the people that she quotes as "reputable" sources are those known for putting up the color collages, and making wild accusations of Homosexual-Pedophile-Satanist-Catholic cults, actually one of them claimed(and perhaps still claims) responsibility for killing a man, whose death the police ruled a suicide, I am not at all willing to take much of anything she has to say as true.

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    2. Lets look at this in perspective.

      R' Elyashiv sets up a Haredi Bet Din for conversion, which is run by eisenstein and cohen. Eisenstein is buddies with tropper, and EJF sends money to R Elyashiv, and claims to follow this Vaad's guidelines.

      Unfortunately, these so called rabbis are involved in sex abuse, and cohen of the most debased child abuse, as well as rape. Yet R Elyashiv sees fit to have a criminal serving as his Dayan.
      Several other Dayanim such as Sherman, who take orders from R Elyashiv, decide to invalidate the conversions of R Druckman's Bet Din (where no sexual abuse took place).

      Can any of these so called Haredi dayanim be relied upon, or are their words all invalid?

      Can R Elyashiv's judgement and motives be relied upon?
      Can it be claimed that the atatck on the BD of R Druckman was purely a halachic matter, or is not now as clear as daylight that this was simply a way of destroying the competition and bringing mroe candiates to their own haredi perverted BD, run by rapist/ child abuser?

      Happy Tammuz everyone!

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    3. Eddie - it is not Purim - your comment is an absurd series of association - without any effort to show that any of your conjecture is true. Your whole point seems to directed at ridicule. I normally would have rejected this - but I feel it is important as an example of what not to say.

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  7. So, you see the association between Tropper + blonde; Cohen + nachlaot; both under the umbrella of the Vaad, as being totally unrelated.
    Also, the alleged higher standards of Halacha in Ohel have only led to more depravity. And both these criminals were suported by R' Elyashiv, and yet you see no connection between these scandals, and the attack on the other converts from a less strict BD.

    Has it occurred to you that the entire problem that you are doing a good job in fighting, is enabled by the very rigid structure of blind obedience that the ultra Haredi world has created. Your fight is an honourable one, and you are fighting the symptoms. Yet if the "cause" is unpalatable to you, then it is rejected.

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  8. If she knew about the abuses but did nothing because she "did not want to go against the rav considered gadol hador" it does make her guilty by association and enabler.

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    1. If that were the case, and there evidence to support such was the case, then it should have been presented to the police so that she could be tried as an accomplice.

      A vigilante beating of a 70yr old woman has no place in Judaism. A vigilante beating of anyone has no place in Judaism.

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  9. Rabbi Zalman Cohen was part of rabbi Nachum Eisenstein beis din and that was the reason Rav Amar told the regional batei din to reject all this beit din conversions.

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    1. You ask if anyone has seen those pictures. Yes they have. A group of concerned, yet rational parents, who either knew that their children had been abused from physical evidence, or feared they had from behavioral changes, went there together to see if they could identify any of the bodies.

      Unfortunately they could not. Believe it or not making a positive identification from just body shots is difficult in the extreme.

      If the evidence can no longer be viewed by concerned citizens, then it wouldn't be because of Rabbinic coverup, it would be because either the police or the court decided to seal the case. Though I do not believe that has happened.

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  13. My comments are in starred ****
    Approximately one year ago a situation exploded in Nachalaot from which the neighborhood is still trying to recover....... Police believe that there were between 7-9 people involved based upon pictures(with faces excluded) of adult men raping children that were found at one of the suspects homes(these pictures can be viewed by anyone who is so desirous by going to the police station in the Russian Compound and requesting to see the evidence).

    This outrage lead the parents and some of the Rabbis to try to get media attention focused on the situation. Included in this was a rally held on Betzalel to which Mondrowitz perversely organized a counter rally.

    ***Ironically, this demonstration was going on at the same time that a good neighbor and friend of mine was being buried as an outcome of the hysteria. Whether he committed suicide or was murdered is irrelevant. What is relevant is the 2 women that were happily tearing down his funeral announcements who happen to be 2 of the women that are behind all the accusations. ***

    With the media attention came some actual help. Yiddish speaking child psychologists and others who could extract information from the children without contaminating the evidence, as well as pressure on the police to try to put a case together. This is what lead to those convictions that have been handed down.
    ***Convictions or indictments? There is a difference. As of now only one of the arrested has been brought to trial and the trial is still in the middle. ***

    However with the good also came the bad. Numerous people popped from within the community and without that simultaneously blamed the parents for not adequately protecting their children while simultaneously generating hysteria by inventing( and there is no better word for it) wild stories of conspiracy. It started out being a homosexual underground conspiracy. Then it became a homosexual satanist cult conspiracy. Then it became a homosexual pedophile satanist cult conspiracy. It's latest mutation is a homosexual pedophile satanist catholic conspiracy. Yes it did get just that crazy. As the parents of the abused were also being accused of not adequately protecting their children, they began to make claims that "their children were NEVER out of their sight so the pedophiles had to be able to walk through walls or have keys to their homes,"

    ***And International Pedophilia Rings. This was the first wild story that was 'invented'***

    In aviation they call a situation like this a death spiral. Where one continues to make bad decisions and over compensations that only exacerbate the problem rather than making it better. Because their was a confederated ring of sorts, and because the police could not identify all of the perpetrators on account of lack of evidence, the situation spiraled to the point that it became(and in some instances remains) reminiscent of the Salem Witch trials or McCarthyism in which one became guilty simply by association. Which lead to many many people being falsely accused, based on the most insignificant of connections. .....
    ***Having been there, I would say it was the Salem Witch hunts from almost the beginning. I know of 2 women who went door to door to convince mothers that their children were being molested. I know of at least 2 families that were told that all of their children were in so and so's house being molested by So and So. After investigating these claims, they found that it was not true. I know another family that the father is sure that his kids were not molested while the mother thinks that MAYBE they were. Many families simply believed the stories from all the pressure that was put on them to accept these stories.
    I have heard of one child who changed his testimony to say that it was not P who raped him but X one of the children from one of the families that has been instrumental in spreading these stories. ***

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    1. I take it that when you say "International Pedophilia Ring" you are talking about the speculation that some of the abusers were involved in the Dreamboard international pedophile and child pornography ring.  While that wasn't the case, that wasn't a crazy or bizarre thought.  In the early days of the problem, when there were dozens of children under the age of five who were being found to have been sexually assualted, and then days later this international pedophile ring is broken up, it is not at all crazy in my mind to wonder and speculate if some of these perpetrators in Nachalaot were also involved in that.  Nor would it be bizarre or crazy for parents to worry that images of their children's torture were being posted around the world. Especially considering that police found photographs of the some of the acts.

      I was also there and it wasn't witch hunts from the very beginning. That is a false statement. It became witch hunts after the police dropped the ball.

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  14. Yes people were falsely accused. Yes some seriously disturbed individuals slandered innocent folk with signs and color collages, and some even took a step of vigilante justice against a 70yr old woman. All of that is true. However, what is also true is that many many children were abused. Some of them too young to ever tell their stories. What is also true is that some of those who were guilty still walk free. What is also true is that there are families that are reeling from the damage done to innocent holy Jewish children. Does any of that justify the hysteria? No, but it makes it understandable how it got started.

    ***Interesting that you are referring to a woman that you seem to get a lot of your information from . Have you retracted from thinking S in the ring leader since S is the main person that this woman you are referring to was slandering in her signs and color collages.
    What is true is that the children are still being molested.
    They are not going to get better as long as they are being treated for things that did not happen.
    They are not going to get better until this myth of a pedophile ring is put to rest and the real culprits are put away.
    When this whole travesty is brought down to earth, ie. the pedophiles are not walking through walls to get to the children. They are living there in the same house, (or friends coming to visit) that are molesting the children. Of course these kids are not going to implicate a brother or uncle or whoever. As long as they can put the blame outside, they are going to continue. After all, they have the support of a few misguided Rabbis . They have support of a Knesset Committee, which in turn put pressure on the police to make arrests of some individuals based on flimsy evidence that were later released, simply to satisfy public demand. And they have they support of the mob mentality that has taken on a life of its own.
    In conclusion, it is certainly possible that there are 1 or 2 or even 4 or 5 pedophiles in Nachlaot. But in all likelihood they are not acting as part of a pedophile ring. Furthermore, I think it is far fetched to say there are 30 pedophiles operating without interference as seen from an article in Israel HaYom. translated by H.K.
    "The dimensions of the pedophilia ring, in the heart of one of the haredi communities in central Jerusalem, were exposed today in a Knesset committee in all of its terrible breadth. More than 100 small children underwent severe physical and sexual abuse by about 30 adult suspects, and all in a small and closed neighborhood. About half of the suspects were arrested, but most continue to live and operate in the neighborhood without interference."
    This number stood well above 40 by February and I imagine they can keep on finding new people to accuse.
    Perhaps the headless molesters that are going through walls to molest the children in their own homes is not so far off the truth.
    It is my belief that the children are being molested by someone in their house, maybe a family member or a close trusted friend or relative. Until this community starts to look within their own homes, rather than putting all the blame outside, we are going to continue to see more invented stories.***

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    1. You are talking about the January 3rd article by Israel HaYom, which they retracted(or at least modified) in the Januarty 13th edition of Israel HaYom.  Not for nothing it seems like you are trying to take bad reporting on the part of Israel HaYom and the imaginings of Shmarya Rosenberg(ask him why it is that in the three interviews he did with Sharon Orand, he got three different stories as to what did or did not happen between her, Tropper and his wife).

      The victims and their families are not responsible for editorialization by an Israeli tabloid.  Were you at the Knesset hearings?  Did you hear what was said there?  Again it was simply a ring of 7-9 total suspects.   I understand that you are upset about being wrongly accused, however, considering the police, and my contact at InterPol believe that this was at least a loosely confederated ring, I'm not sure what evidence you have, other than Rosenberg's supposed investigative reporting, saying that it wasn't.

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    2. In your own words about your InterPol contact;
      "The investigators and prosecutors royally bungled the investigation, I don’t think they could have made a greater dog’s dinner of the whole thing, it is still fixable though, however they are convinced that it is all hysteria. Looking at all the rumors flying, if I didn’t know you, I would be too, and in fact even knowing you, I’m wondering if you weren’t misled"
      I who do not know you except from your blog all the more so think you were misled.
      I am still trying to find someone who knows about these pictures. So far, anyone I ask has not heard of them.

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  15. What does Mondrowitz ymsv'z have to do with this?

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  16. This is a court document regarding the Zalman Cohen case, it includes a testimony of children describing the inside of the homes where they were abused. In their testimony the children describe in detail the inside houses of Binyamin Satz, Bentzion Primishelanu, and Zalman Cohen. While the residence of Sarah Vorst is not mentioned in the document, Zalman Cohen probably use it to abuse the conversion candidates.

    The document also mentions that the police found in Zalman Cohen' office in OSI, handcuffs, masks and other equipments more fitting in the West Village and the Castro than Nachalaot.

    The bottom line is that they are connected; Tropper, Cohen and Vorst

    Warning: the children testimony is detailed and disturbing.

    http://failedmessiah.typepad.com/files/zalman-cohen-court-document-nachlaot-pedophilia-case-11-2011.pdf

    zalman-cohen-court-document-HEBREW

    zalman-cohen-court-document-ENGLISH

    http://failedmessiah.typepad.com/failed_messiahcom/2011/12/nachlaot-pedophila-case-zalman-cohen-456.html

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  17. Daniel,

    Let me understand this. The testimony mentions the other confederates, but NOT Sarah Vorst. Therefore Sarah Vorst has to be involved? That makes absolutely no sense. You are pushing guilt by association, and you think that is normal, which is horribly disturbing.

    It's obvious that Rav Eisenstein needs to find himself some better friends, but that doesn't make him guilty either. Everyday many innocent people go to work in offices with pedophiles who they believe to be totally innocent. Those pedophiles at times will access child porn and have various paraphanalia right there in the office. However whether sharing office space in a Fortune 500 or OSI doesn't make you guilty. Further to that, vigilante justice is simply despicable.

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  18. Daniel L, Nachlaot Child Abuse,

    I would like to thank the two of you for so superbly demonstrating the problem at hand. On one side you have the child abusers, some of the wrongly accused and the defenders and enablers of both trying very hard to state, despite court documents to the contrary, that there was no confederated group of pedophiles. That it was simply isolated incidents(even many isolated incidents) that occured and that family members are to be blamed.

    On the other side, you have those who insist that anyone involved with, neighboring to, or working(in a professional setting) with one of the validly accused, must also be a pedophile and part of the confederation and thus worthy of accusation, and possibly even vigilante justice.

    This is precisely why the situation spiraled out of control with little or no hope of remedy.

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    2. My dear friend, I think that it spiraled out of control a long time ago. Like when I and many others were first accused almost a year ago. Your blogs over the year have been a nice contribution to this spiral. I did not come onto the picture until very recently and therefore find it hard to understand how you can blame me for the situation spiraling out of control. I saw it was useless to speak up. However, when the Rabbis Social Workers and Police did their own investigation, and the Rabbis and Yad LeAchim came out with their statements, I felt it was important to reach the Engish speaking public also with these words of truth and perhaps with the weight of their authority, my words would be listened to also. Although I am sure many people read the letters, there are those that still choose to ignore the implications of their words and fan the flames with statements like Rabbinical Cover up etc. as in your very own blog site. http://mekubal.wordpress.com/2012/06/24/nachalaot-nightmare-rabbinic-coverup/ Have a good day

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  19. My dear Rabbi Ztadok,
    Interesting that you would blame me for the spiraling out of control when in fact things spiraled out of control almost a year ago when I was first accused. You do have a good point though that there is no point in arguing this in the public's eye. However, since there have been plenty of accusations against the wrongly accused,I decided to speak up and posted the letters from Yad LeAchim and various Rabbis that were the result of a thorough investigation into the matter by the social services, the police, and certain Rabbis that were hired by the neighborhood. Your insistence and others that there is a pedophile ring of between 7 and 9 people will be decided by the courts. Not by you or me arguing whether it exists or not. I personally think that it is not true for the following reasons.
    1. I know I am not part of the ring.
    2. I know that some of the people that are accused of being part of the ring have nothing to do with each other.
    The fact that you acknowledged that there are many people falsely accused is commendable. It shows great strides from your response when you first received the Rabbinical letters from me a couple weeks ago. http://mekubal.wordpress.com/2012/06/24/nachalaot-nightmare-rabbinic-coverup/ Wishing you well

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