Thursday, September 13, 2018

Confusion over pro-Corbyn letter ‘from strictly-Orthodox rabbis’


A row has broken out in Stamford Hill over the authenticity of a letter posted in synagogues before Rosh Hashanah, purporting to have been signed by leading rabbis in the area.
The letter, translated by the blogger If You Tickle Us, who lives in the neighbourhood, says it is “an open letter from leading Orthodox Jewish community leaders in the UK”, and publicly dissociates the strictly Orthodox community from recent attacks on Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn.


  1. Well why not?
    In his biography of the Seridei Eish, R' Prof Marc Shapiro reprinted a letter from Jewish community leaders and rabbis assuring Hitler, y"sh, that they were on-side with him when it came to his family values and strong Germany position, not like those other liberal Jews. So if they could, why not this?

  2. this story is fake news - not clear who falsified that letter .
    However, your point regarding the Seridei eish ztl is more relevant to the other post on her about voting for "conservatives"

  3. Rabi Yochonon been Zakai rightfully went to meet and honor Roman General, later Ceaser, Titus as he surrounded Jerusalem in plan to destroy it and its Jews.

  4. He was repentant, he did notask to save Jerusalem.

  5. Yet he honored the rasha Titus despite the bloodbath Titus was preparing for the Jews in Jerusalem.

  6. OK, so what is your point exactly ?

    Rebbi Yochanan was pleading to save the remnant of the Jews. He later on realised he should or could have pleaded for Jerusalem itself and was scared about his olam haba. This is not a modern opinion, it is brought down in the gemara. If, by his own admission, he mad an error (he was under extreme duress and fear for hsi life by the biryonim) then we should not emulate his mistakes, we should think about what if he hadn't made that mistake. Same goes even by figures in the Tanach - if King David of Shlomo made errors, doesn't mean we should repeat them, we are supposed to try and learn from those - even if you hold they didn't really make errors etc.

  7. At most his "mistake" was for not asking Titus for an even bigger requested favor. He certainly wasn't mistaken for engaging with Titus, effectively honoring him. The point being that if kissing Hitler's tush we could've won some consessions or even had the slight chance of getting some concessions, then it was worth kissing Hitler's tush to potentially save Jewish lives.

  8. Eddie
    Gerald, nobody is really interested in your post divorce legal problems, and they have nothing to do with knowing Torah. Do you really think a judge in NY will be reading this? Even so, it will not be allowed to influence him. what are you trying to achieve by boring us with all your legal dockets? I mentioned that becasue you called me troll, however, by your own definition, you are trolling this blog each time you update us on all your Susan motions and failures in court. Are you a professor at ariel university? if so, do you fly back to USA each time you have a hearing?
    11:58 a.m., Friday Sept. 14 | Other comments by Eddie

    Reply to Eddie

    “publicly dissociates the strictly Orthodox community from recent attacks on Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn”
    Terrible! Why? Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn is on a march in the direction of the worst Anti-Semites ever: Titus, Hitler etc. The Left in the USA is anti-Semitic. See
    “He also claimed to have no knowledge of a Democratic Party mailer that all but called Nixon, a practicing Jew, an anti-Semite.”
    “The recent mailer from the state Democratic Party, which Cuomo funds and controls, isn’t subtle. It says, without evidence, that his primary opponent, Cynthia Nixon, can’t be trusted to support Israel and Jewish causes or to fight anti-Semitism. It was sent to about 7,000 homes in ultra-Orthodox neighborhoods. “With anti-Semitism and bigotry on the rise, we can’t take a chance with inexperienced Cynthia Nixon,” the mailer reads. It says she is “against funding yeshivas, supports BDS, the racist, xenophobic campaign to boycott Israel” and is “silent on the rise of anti-Semitism.” Cuomo, by contrast, is said to be strong on all the key issues. The flier credits him with “providing over $200 million to support yeshivas.”
    “Nixon herself should not have bothered except perhaps to make a point, which is that the radical/socialist wing is coming and coming fast to take over the Party…Which takes us back to anti-Semitism. Now why on earth would anyone play that card? Except? Except that when it comes to Democratic Progressive Socialist Liberals, it has the ring of truth. It’s what we’ve come to assume. Democrats and anti-Semites go hand-in-hand. It is nothing we did. They did it, and the image of Bill Clinton sharing the same stage with Louis Farrakhan saves us a thousand more words”
    I agree with Moe Ginsburg “At most his "mistake" was for not asking Titus for an even bigger requested favor”

  9. Rav sonnenfeld refused to greet the Kaiser, but OK I see your point.

  10. Okay, fact check. In Gittin, Rabban Yochanan doesn't ask for Yerushalayim but in the expanded version in Midrash Eicha he actually does. He points out that all this was based on a misunderstanding and that he wants to negotiate a peaceful surrender to save the city. Vespasian responds by saying "Hey, I didn't come all this way not to destroy the city so ask for something else" which is when Rabban Yochanan asks for Yavneh instead.
    Yes, he honoured Vespasian. If he wanted to negotiate, he had to. It wasn't because of honest admiration for him or all things Roman, just practical diplomacy. The Jews in the German letter actually seem to believe that Hitler's whole Jew-hating platform was just to win votes and that by emphasizing their similarities with his family purity positions they'll win him over as an ally. Remember this is in 1933 when there was no hint of the horror to come, just the concern that things would get difficult for the Jews.
    And by the way, he never met Titus in that story.

  11. I think I mixed up Titus with Vespasian, but the point is the same. Regarding the German letter to Hitler, I would think the motivation would be about the same. Namely to lick his tush in attempt to placate him a bit so that he'd be less hateful to the Jews. It obviously didn't work but the intention was the same.

  12. The Kaiser wasn't a threat to the Jews at the time, so there was no point in meeting him and certainly no point in honoring him, a foreign leader.

  13. Rav Sonnenfeld identified the kaiser as being Amalek, so I am curious why this insight was not applied to the the other one, yemach shmo.

  14. I don't understand this nuxin business. She claims to be raising her (adopted or natural?) children Jewish, and her rabbi is Sharon kleinbaum of the village's gay and lesbian temple. Yet ms kleinbaum (husband wife of teacher's union president) only allows pro BDS speakers in her temple.
    So she supports BDS, which is what that mailer said. So, for once, Cuomo is right (no fan him, either).

  15. One was the son of the other.
    Didn't ask for yerushalayim so he could get "yavneh veChachameha" (where the politics was much more favorable to Rome, and less restrictive to Jews) and a doctor for Rav Tzadok.

  16. Even in 1935, they were saying haNoten tshuah for the government, not naming any officials. Source, a sfat emet Roedelheim (the traditional yekke siddur, still in use today) siddur printed in Tel Aviv, 1935

  17. He was taken to see him, once the Romans realized he didn't belong there.

  18. The Kaiser was also related to the British monarch, and he had an obligation to meet him just for that.


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