Wednesday, December 15, 2021

Rabbi Kaminetsky-Rabbi Greenblatt Heter: Summary: Does a gadol have to give permission to protest against Rav Shmuel Kaminetky's heter

Question: Regarding my posts about the terrible perversion of Torah and halacha that Rav Shmuel Kaminetsky has engineered with his production of the Kaminetsky-Greenblatt Heter - how could I publicize this matter without a psak from gedolim (i.e. Daas Torah) that it was permitted and also being told explicitly what kind of publicity should be done? Answer:

1) Rav Sternbuch in his letters regarding this matter has made it clear that we are required to  publicize and protest this perversion where a woman was allowed to remarry without first receiving a Get. He does not mention anything about remaining quiet unless you personally receive a psak to protest.
November 2015 letter
          November 2015 parsha sheet
January 2016 letter

2) However even without Rav Sternbuch's explicit statement as well as the many public letters of major rabbis attacking this heter - there is no halachic source which requires a person to ask a person viewed as a gadol or even ask a rabbi. Obviously if the determination that something wrong has been done comes from a single individual it is a good idea to confirm with a competent rabbi that his evaluation is correct. But in the case of this "heter" there are many strong letters of condemnation from major rabbis and there are no dissenting voice that the heter is valid - that is simply not an issue. The consensus is that Tamar is an eishis ish who is living with a man who is not her husband.

phony seruv against Aharon Friedman by R Shmuel Kaminetsky

R Herschel Schachter:Beat Aharon Friedman with baseball bat - rely on authority of R Kaminetsky

R Shalom Kaminetsky asking for heter in name of his father

R Shalom Kaminetsky asking for heter and Rav Greenblatt's reply

Summary of the facts regarding the Heter

Rav Herschel Schacter: Mekach ta'os - making a farce of the halacha

Bedatz protest against heter

Rav Shmuel Feurst revealed as signer on heter

How Tamar destroyed her marriage with the assistance of the Kaminetskys

Wohlmark gang false seruv and Epstein lawyer Goldfein

Therapists that met with Aharon Friedman - deny discussing him with others

R Shmuel Kaminetsky to Rav Weiss - agrees to psak of Rav Dovid Feinstein

Who should be honored with Sandek for the mamzer?

Kaminetsky-Greenblatt Heter: Rav Eliahu Rominek's teshuva explaining why it is worthless
Tamar's diary clearly showing Aharon has no mental illness

Tamar's own words refute psychiatric claims of mental illness

psychologist says the psychiatrist report used is invalid

lawyer in family law : even if psychiatric report was accurate - the conclusion of mekach ta'us are not

Dr. Baruch Shulem - illegal and invalid to write report about someone therapist didn't meet

Pamphlet with most of the protest letters

Rav Gestetner Hebrew

Rav Gestetner English translation

Baltimore Beis Din first letter with Israeli gedolim agreement

R Shalom Kaminetsky's letter asking for the heter and Rav Nota Greenblatt's teshuva giving the heter

Baltimore Beis Din revised letter Nov 2015

Baltimore beis din apologizes to Aharon Friedman + Rav Reuven Feinstein and Rav Miller jan 2016

Rav Aharon Feldman      English translation of Rav Feldman's letter

Rav Aharon Feldman Only talmidei chachomim can decide this issue

Letter to Rav Aharon Feldman

Rav Malinowitz criticzing Rav Feldman for indicating this a macholes haposkim

Rav Landesman

Open letter to Rav Aharon Schechter regarding his attempt to save Rav Kaminetsky

Rav Shmuel Auerbach

Rav A C Sherman

Rav Avraham Yehoshua Solveitchik can not learn by Rav Kaminetsky

Open letter to the Moetzes of the Aguda

Washington area rabbis shun Aharon Friedman with feminist justification

Rav Herschel Schacter recording - heter no good

Rav Sternbuch letter November

Rav Sternbuch parasha sheet

Rav Sternbuch letter

Rav Sholom Kametsky letter

Rav Sternbuch criticized by R Brodsky for calling for protests

Assertion that layman can't criticize crimes of rabbis

Rav Pinchus Rabinowitz

Hisachdus HaRabbonim of USA and Canada

Hisachdus letter posuling Rav Greenblatt

Rav Shlomo Miller Rav Wachtfoget et al

Refutation of support of heter from Yevamos

Rav Chaim Kanievsky and other Israeli gedolim

Eidah Chareidis

Rav Rominek's teshuva

Rav Feivel Cohen and Rav Shlomo Miller

R Sholom letter saying he and his father accept Rav Dovid Feinstein's psak
=============================Critical of those who made the heter ------------

Rav Shlomo Miller - Rav Greenblatt is referred to as "rav"

Rav Sternbuch criticized by R Brodsky for calling for protests by the masses

Hisachdus letter posuling Rav Greenblatt

Rav Avraham Yehoshua Solveitchik can not learn by Rav Kaminetsky
3) An additional question is whether a gadol is different and that a gadol can never be publicly condemned.

Rav Moshe Feinstein says it is permitted to publicly disagree with a gadol even as big as the Chazon Ish - and even in his community
Diasgreeing with the Chazon Ish in Bnei Brak
From one of the letters (2:133) of the Chazon Ish it is clear that he permits criticizing gadolim because they are influential - but not people who no one pays attention to.
Criticizing Gedolim
Mo'd Koton (17a) is clear that one can publicize the misdeeds of gedolim. We in fact pasken like this gemora.

if a disciple ‘separates’ someone in [defence of] his personal dignity his ‘separation’ is an [effective] . For it is taught: ‘One who has been "separated" [as under a ban] by the Master is [deemed] "separated" from the disciple; but one who has been "separated" by the disciple is not [deemed] "separated" from the Master’.1 [That means], not ‘separated’ from the Master; but in regard to everybody else he is [‘separated’]. [Now let us see; ‘separated’] for what [offence]? If [it was imposed] for some offence towards Heaven, then there is no wisdom nor understanding nor counsel against the Lord!2 Therefore [presumably] it is only so3 [where a disciple had pronounced it] in [defence of] his personal dignity. R. Joseph said that a Collegiate4 may enforce his own rights in a matter where he is perfectly certain [as to the law]. There was once a certain Collegiate whose reputation was objectionable. Said Rab Judah, How is one to act? To put the shammetha on him [we cannot], as the Rabbis have need of him [as an able teacher]. Not to put the shammetha on him [we cannot afford] as the name of Heaven is being profaned. Said he to Rabbah b. Bar Hana, Have you heard alight on that point? He replied: ‘Thus said R. Johanan: What means the text, For the priest's lips should keep knowledge and they should seek the law at his mouth; for he is the messenger of the Lord of Hosts?5 [It means, that] if the Master is like unto a messenger of the Lord of Hosts, they should seek the law at his mouth; but if [he be] not , they should not seek the law at his mouth’. [Thereupon] Rab Judah pronounced the shammetha on him. In the end Rab Judah became indisposed. The Rabbis came to enquire about him and that man came along with them. When Rab Judah beheld him he laughed. Said the man to him: Not enough for him that he put upon that man [me] the shammetha, but he even laughs at me! Replied he [Rab Judah]: I was not laughing at you: but as I am departing to that World [beyond] I am glad to think that even towards such a personage as you I showed no indulgence. Rab Judah's soul came to rest.6 The man [then] came to the College [and] said, ‘Absolve me’. Said the Rabbis to him, There is no man here of the standing of Rab Judah who could absolve you; but go to R. Judah Nesi'ah7 that he may absolve you. He went and presented himself to him. Said he to R. Ammi: ‘Go forth and look into his case; if it be necessary to absolve him, absolve him’. R. Ammi looked into his case and had a mind to absolve him. Then R. Samuel b. Nahmani got up on his feet and said: ‘Why, even a ‘separation" imposed by one of the domestics in Rabbi's house was not lightly treated by the Rabbis for three years; how much more so one imposed by our colleague, Rab Judah!’ Said R. Zera, From the fact that this venerable scholar8 should just now have turned up at this College after not having come here for many years, you must take it that it is not desirable to absolve that man. He [R. Judah Nesi'ah]9 did not absolve him. He went away weeping. A wasp then came and stung him in the privy member and he died. They brought him into ‘The Grotto of the Pious’, but they admitted him not.10 They brought him into ‘The Grotto of the Judges’ and they received him.11 Why was he admitted there? — Because he had acted according to the dictum of R. Il'ai. For R. Il'ai says, If one sees that his [evil] yezer12 is gaining sway over him, let him go away where he is not known; let him put on sordid13 clothes, don a sordid wrap and do the sordid deed that his heart desires rather than profane the name of Heaven openly.14

Additionally we have Berachos (19) that to stop a chilul haShem we don't show respect to a rav. And this corruption of halacha to allow a woman to remarry without a Get is clearly a chilul hashem as well as something that the poskim says sets a dangerous precedent.
 R. Judah said in the name of Rab: If one finds mixed kinds in his garment, he takes it off even in the street. What is the reason? [It says]: There is no wisdom nor understanding nor counsel against the Lord;4 wherever a profanation of God's name is involved no respect is paid to a teacher.

ש"ך יורה דעה סימן שג ס"ק א
א ואפי' היה רבו. דבמקום שיש חילול השם אין חולקין כבוד לרב וע"ל סי' רמ"ב סכ"ב: 

4) Finally the Rambam is very clear about what to do. He makes no stipulation that his psak is dependent upon going to a rav or gadol to get permission to protest. He clearly indicates that if private protest doesn't work then protests should be escalated to public degradation of the person sinning.

Rambam(Hilchos De'os 6:8):At first, a person who admonishes a colleague should not speak to him harshly until he becomes embarrassed as [Leviticus 19:17] states: "[You should]... not bear a sin because of him." This is what our Sages said: Should you rebuke him to the point that his face changes [color]? The Torah states: "[You should]... not bear a sin because of him." 
From this, [we learn that] it is forbidden for a person to embarrass a [fellow] Jew. How much more so [is it forbidden to embarrass him] in public. Even though a person who embarrasses a colleague is not [liable for] lashes on account of him, it is a great sin. Our Sages said: "A person who embarrasses a colleague in public does not have a share in the world to come." 
Therefore, a person should be careful not to embarrass a colleague - whether of great or lesser stature - in public, and not to call him a name which embarrasses him or to relate a matter that brings him shame in his presence. 
When does the above apply? In regard to matters between one man and another. However, in regard to spiritual matters, if [a transgressor] does not repent [after being admonished] in private, he may be put to shame in public and his sin may be publicized. He may be subjected to abuse, scorn, and curses until he repents, as was the practice of all the prophets of Israel.


  1. I'm guessing I read every 4th/5th post of yours. But it's also true that I quit reading once your post transitions from the blogpost subject to your personal life.

  2. Not sure I understand how this works. The blogpost is date-marked "Thursday, January 23, 2020", yet the Comments below are all from 3-4yrs ago.

  3. it is simple i recently republished an old post


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