Monday, July 20, 2009

Wall posters slandering Hadassah Hospital

YNet JPost

Walls of haredi neighborhoods of Jerusalem have been plastered with provocative street posters – pashkevils – over the past few days, since the case of the mother suspected of starving her three-year-old son has become public knowledge.

The instigative posters and flyers all make serious slanderous accusations against the Hadassah Ein Kerem Hospital in the capital, which has been treating the toddler, accusing it with acts similar to the Nazi horrors of the Holocaust. One poster's title read "Hadassah Ein Kerem 2009 – A modern-day Dr. Mengele".

The pashkevils were signed by the "Public Committee for the Inquiry of the Hadassah Ein Kerem Crimes" and in it the committee states: "We demand a separate committee to investigate the crimes of the doctors, and that all of those who performed experiments on the child be put behind bars".


  1. This is a very intersting example where the creation of myths can be studied.

    (The Israel Valis case gave rise to similar myths, in some occurences people use exactely the same vocabulary: "Alilat Dam" was said about the Valis arrestion, they said "the prosecutor should get down from the tree he climbed on" back than and now...

    I suppose that even the conviction of Valis did not convince them that he was really guilty. You cannot fight myths.

    To me, these two examples are an interesting moshel as to how to interpret chasidic stories from earlier periods.

  2. This is all happening during the Three Weeks. It reeks of God saying "Fine, stay in golus you cretins!"

  3. shoshi - have you read the evidence --the court transcripts? Or is reading headlines enough for you to make a decision on dinei nefashos? If the child lost weight while in the hospital for the past six months, don't you think something is weird? If the hospital refuses to allow the child to be transferred to another hospital, don't you think they are concerned about something? If the hospital wouldn't let a team of doctors from the USA or from England see the child and the medical record, I think there is more to this "myth"

  4. As far as Israel Valis is concerned:
    1) When someone is convicted for a deed, you are allowed to believe that he did it. This is not lashon hara. Of course, there can be judicial errors, but the majority rule is that they really did do it.

    2) I read a report on "Baby-shaking Trauma" from an independent source, in German. It says that the following symptoms are found when a baby was (violently) shaken:
    - subdural hematoma
    - subarachnoid hematoma
    - retina bleeding
    - detached retina
    - hypoxia (which causes death)

    These symptoms cannot be caused by a mere fall, even from 1.5m height. (here, the defense argued that the baby fell 50cm from the bed, or first hit the wall by accident and then fell to the floor).

    Then I read a translation of the court transcript, that every one of these symptons were found in the death baby.

    If you want to prove this wrong, bring along the court acts, and tell me where the translation was wrong.

    From this I conclude without any doubt that it was shaken baby trauma and that the conviction was justified.

    Still, the "Valis-fans" claim to this day that he is innocent.

    I'll write more in the next comment.

  5. ...the next comment somehow got lost, apparently...

  6. shoshi: a quote for you to read
    "Injuries are most likely to happen when there is both acceleration (from shaking) and deceleration (from the head hitting something). Even hitting a soft object, such as a mattress or pillow, may be enough to injure newborns and small infants. The result is a type of whiplash, similar to that seen in some auto accidents. A number of factors make infants highly vulnerable to such forces. For example, children's brains are softer, their neck muscles and ligaments are weak and not fully developed, and their heads are large and heavy in proportion to their bodies.

    When an infant or toddler is shaken, the brain bounces back and forth against the skull. This can cause bruising of the brain (cerebral contusion), swelling, pressure, and bleeding in the brain" In other words, what the father said happened, he was on the bed with the child on his chest, rocking the child when the child slipped against the wall and thudded to the floor could and might have induced the exact conditions as shaken baby.


    says in German:
    "Ein SBS in seiner vollen Ausprägung erfordert massivstes, heftiges, gewaltsames Hinund
    Herschütteln des an den Oberarmen (...) oder des Brustkorbes (...) gehaltenen Kindes"
    My translation:
    "A full-blown Shaken Baby Syndrom, can only be the result of very, very massive, hefty and violent shaking of the child that is held either by the upper arms or at the chest."

    Other, more popular brochures confirm: gentle rocking of the child cannot result in SBS.

    I don't have children of my own, but even I know that you should always support the head of a newborn until it is strong enough to hold it on his own. But this is not the issue here: he shook it strongly.

    Furthermore the coroner reports that there was not only fresh blood in the retina, but also blood that was 1 to 2 weeks old, which would indicate that this was not the first time he shook his baby.

    I agree that SBS can also be quite traumatizing for parents who caused it. I agree that it could happen that a young father is not aware of what he is doing. But still: it is undisputed that the baby died because of it.

    He was not convicted for murder, just with manslaughter ("out of recklessness"). So the judge aknowledged that he did not "do it on purpose". But still: the child died. Perhaps, in another country he would have gotten away with three years instead of six. But to claim that he is innocent and a martyr in jail is plain nonsense.

    I learned that the Rabbinical courts in our days do not deal with criminal cases like this one. But still, I would be interested to know what he would have gotten, based on those facts, according to Torah law.


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