Monday, December 21, 2015

Rav Nota Greenblatt's relying on a psychiatrist's report based solely on severely biased testimony is not comparable to the evidence that Rav Moshe Feinstein used

There has been some complaints that I have been unfair in criticizing Rav Greenblatt's relying on a psychiatric report that he did not understand. A report  which was largely based on Tamar's hostile comments without the psychiarist meeting Aharon or giving him a chance to explain the truth of the assertions or even the context. It has been claimed that Rav Moshe Feinstein also relied on such expert testimony to decide if the marriage was a mistake and that the evidence he used was also hearsay.

However it is obviously that the Rav Moshe was not relying solely on the biased and subjective reports from an alleged victim. He dealt with cases where it was possible to objectively ascertain the truth of the problem. Furthermore the evidence was not contested as it is in the present case. 

Below is one of Rav Moshe's teshuvos describing the evidence he based himself to decide that the husband was mentally ill and to annul the marriage. This is clearly not the type of evidence that Rav Greenblatt used.

שו"ת אגרות משה אבן העזר חלק א סימן פ
בדבר שוטה אם הוא מום גדול לבטל הקידושין אם לא ידעה כשא"א להשיג גט פטורין כ"ז ניסן תשט"ו. מע"כ ידידי הרה"ג מהר"ר זאב דרייזין שליט"א וכל ידידי הרבנים הגדולים והחשובים חברי ועד הרבנים בבאלטימאר /בלטימור/ שליט"א.

בדבר האשה שניסת לאחד ואחרי עבור איזה שבועות נעלם ממנה ועתה הוא בבית אביו וא"א להשיג גט פטורין באשר שאביו אינו מניח שום איש אליו משום שהוא חולה במחלת שטות שירא מאנשים וחושש אביו שיחלה ביותר עד שלא יוכלו להחזיקו בבית והיא עגונה זה כי"ד שנים ותובעת מהרבנים שישתדלו לתקנתה ונסעו שלשה רבנים לבית החולים של הצבא בפערי פוינט והשיגו רשיון לעיין בכל הנירות הנמצאים שם אודות חולה זה ששהה שם איזה חדשים והוריו הוציאו אותו משם למרות דעת הרופאים בהבטחתם שהם ישגיחו עליו בביתם ואמרו הרופאים להם כי הוא משוגע ממש לכל דבר. ובנירות נמצא כתב מרופא מומחה שנכתב בשנת ל"ח למספרם כי הוא משוגע גמור וגם היה הולך ערום ומאבד מה שנותנים לו וכדומה. ומכתב מפורט בחתימת ארבעה רופאים מומחים משנת מ"ד למספרם אשר ג"כ אומרים שהמחלה הותחלה בשנת ל"ח למספרם. ומשמע דעת הרופאים שאף בזמן שלא היה ניכר עליו עניני השטות שהרי בשנת מ"א למספרם היה חמשה חדשים בצבא ואחרי שנשתחרר מפני שנותיו נשא אחרי עבור שלשים את האשה הזאת וא"כ לא היה ניכר עליו סימני שטות דאם היה ניכר בו סימני שטות לא היו מקבלין אותו בצבא ולא היתה ניסת לו וגם אחרי שברח פתאם מביתו התנדב שוב לעבוד בצבא והיה שם ערך שתי שנים עד שראו שהוא משוגע והכניסוהו לבית החולים בפערי פוינט, מ"מ דעת הרופאים שמחלת השטות היתה בו בעצם בכל העת מפעם הראשון שנחלה בשנת ל"ח שהיה כשלש שנים קודם הנישואין. והאשה לא ידעה שהיה חולה בשנת ל"ח על מחלת שטות, לבד שמסתבר כן שהרי לא ידעו מזה אנשים אחרים כי הוריו הסתירו זה, ראו הרבנים שם בבית החולים מכתב אמו שמפרטת מצבו של בנה מיום הולדו הוזכר שם גם שכלתה היא אשתו של החולה לא ידעה מאומה ממחלתו הקודמת. ולכן מסתפקים כתר"ה אם יש להתירה מצד בטול הקידושין דאם היתה יודעת שהיה משגע לא היתה מתקדשת לו וכ"ש שהיה גם אז משגע כעדות הרופאים שודאי לא היתה מתקדשת לו. ומחמת שהוא ענין עגונה ששקדו חז"ל לתקנתה נזדקקתי לעיין בזה אף כי מה אני להורות בדבר חמור כזה והשי"ת יעזרנו שלא נכשל ח"ו ויורנו אמת להלכה ולמעשה.


  1. Rabbi nota Greenblat- Reb Moshe
    Rabbi Y Roth, Rav Mendel Zilber - Satmar Rebbe
    This time I hope Satmar Rebbe wins if yidishkeit is to stay in its current form

  2. Hope satmer wins for the kavod of r' Moshe which is being dragged through the mud by these charlatans

  3. Then the officials shall address the troops, as
    follows: “Is there anyone who has built a new house but has not dedicated it?
    Let him go back to his home, lest he die in battle and another dedicate it. Is
    there anyone who has planted a vineyard but has never harvested it? Let him go back
    to his home, lest he die in battle and another harvest it. Is there anyone who
    has paid the bride-price for a wife, but who has not yet married her? Let him
    go back to his home, lest he die in battle and another marry her.” (Deuteronomy

    Kiddushin 13b:

    “To this R. Shisha son of R. Idi demurred: Perhaps
    who is meant by “and another marry her.” another man: the yabam? Said R. Ashi,
    There are two answers to this: first, the yabam is not designated ‘another
    man’: and furthermore, it is written. “then this latter man rejects her, writes
    her a bill of divorcement, hands it to her, and sends her away from his house;
    or the man who married her last dies”(Deuteronomy 24:3). Thus death is compared
    to divorce: just as divorce completely frees [permits] her, so does death
    completely free her.”

    In Rabbi Moshe Feinstein’s heter the man never married
    לקחה the woman.
    Why? He was too sick, mentally, to have sex with her, to be a father to
    her children.

    My theory is that the Torah teaches us that a man
    should enjoy his wife much as a much should enjoy a house that is his and he
    lives in, and as much as a man should enjoy wine that is his and he
    drinks. Enjoying the wife, the key is
    sex. No sex---no marriage. Yes sex, and God blesses them with a beautiful
    healthy daughter---yes marriage. One can
    end that that marriage only with a get or by death.

  4. In the
    מדור מגן וצנה
    there is a statement from Rav Shmuel Kamenetzky where he states that he was never matir, so why are we still pointing fingers at him?

  5. Lakewood Yeshiva GuyDecember 21, 2015 at 8:26 AM

    Because that statement was an obvious lie. The letters from sholom prove it. As further proof, read the language he used in his statement. I would think that a 90 year old rosh yeshiva would have a greater mastery of לשון הקודש. He was clearly avoiding talking clearly about the issue whilst at the same time not incriminating himself were the truth to come out, as it did. והמבין יבין

  6. I don't see what is lacking in his concise statement where he simply states "I never was matir to free the woman through annulment of the marriage." And letters from someone else claiming the support and authorization of R' Shmuel does not by any means prove that R' Shmuel in fact supported him and R' Shmuel's statement that he does not and never did suffices to disqualify anybody's claim contrary to that. All we have here is a statement from someone with an agenda using R' Shmuels name and R' Shmuel denies this. If you want R' Shmuel to openly and publicly and clearly call his son a liar, it is debatable whether he has not already amply done that by making his statement of denial in a way appropriate for a father. Are you thirsty for him to publicly say 'my son is my shame and disgrace'? It is debatable whether he must take any further action. Maybe he must and maybe he should, but not doing that is in no way equivalent to being matir.

  7. Reb Shmuel is an old man and a senior Rav who has been placed in a terrible position by his son. He is between a rock and a hard place. By denying what was said in his name, he dealt with his situation in a classy mild but powerful way. Should we not be afraid to be mevazeh him?

  8. Not aware of anyone who agrees with you. It is more correctly described as a train wreck in slow motion.

  9. Harry all these issues have been discussed at length already. Saying he wasn't matir does not deny that he wasn't actively involved in the process including corruption of the halacha regarding beis din and seruv. All Rav Shmuel has to say is that he doesn't approve of the heter. He doesn't hae to say his son is a liar or that Rav Greenblatt is incompetent.

  10. Politically IncorrectDecember 22, 2015 at 9:36 PM

    If I am correct, he was initially involved, before his son was. His son has seemed to be drawn in on his father's behest. Anybody disagrees?

  11. I'm sorry I came to the blog in the middle of this discussion. Can you point me to where this has been dealt with at length please.

    I just want to point out that if he in fact was not involved, as may well be the case, then we shouldn't be hounding him about his choice of words in how to deny his involvement contrary to his son's claim. he has denied involvement. He must be very pained that he is put in such a position to discredit the son of whom he has always expected to be only proud. (There may also be family issues and pressures in connection to this.) And yet he has courageously undermined his son's claim of his involvement, for the sake of the truth and so that he should have no part in the wrong doing.

  12. he needs to publicly say the heter is not valid

  13. Would you say that all the other members of the Mo'etzes who have remained silent about the issue also need to say publicly that the heter is not valid?

  14. I agree that ideally he should do that but it doesn't disqualify him if he doesn't. It doesn't even disqualify other members of the Mo'etzes who have remained remained totally silent even though they wouldn't be speaking up against their own son's, but certainly not Rav Shmuel who has in fact not remained silent as he did make a statement of not being matir, and everybody understands that this means he doesn't agree with the heter but is just using a mild language because it is too close to home and too painful. If someone doesn't want to admit that this is what is meant by Rav Shmuels words, because he wants to accept the heter, so he twists the truth and for such people it would be beneficial that R' Shmuel would say it yet clearer, for those people I say, Yesharim darkai Hashem... uposhim yikoshlu ba.

    So while I say that ideally it would be better if R' Shmuel would make a clear statement that the heter isn't valid, his not doing so is a dikduk kechut hasaarah which may not to be judged by us to ch'v disqualify a reputable Rav and to be mevazeh a talmid chacham. So if this is all we have against him, I would expect that those who expect people to retract their mistakes should retract this mistake of being mevazeh Rav Shmuel.

  15. sorry you are clearly wrong when you say, "everybody understands that his means he doesn't agree with the heter"

    your comment indicates you either haven't read all the documents or you don't understand them


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