Friday, April 24, 2020

Ongoing IDF Antireligious Hate Under Corona


When There's No Justice Below - It Rains Down from On High

30 Nissan, 5780 °°° April 24, '20 °°° Par. Tazria-Metzorah [ver. 1a]

[The initial post of this article - - was circulated in this week's email of the Coalition for Jewish Values.]

By Binyomin Feinberg,



Firstly, we share an important notice for all Israeli draft-age girls and women, including those holding dual-citizenship:


Secondly, here's the update link for the month of Iyyar, to check in case we post something during the week between our regular Wednesday/ Thursday posts:


B. The Religious Persecution of Olga S.

Let's start with a brief review of one exemplary, ongoing travesty of overt religious persecution by the Israeli Army - traversing the span of over a year and a half: the case of a Ba'alas Teshuvah ("Observant-by-Choice") girl, Olga Shamilov:

The procedure for religious and traditional girls to secure their legal entitlement to a Religious Exemption from Israeli Army service is to present a Tatzhir Dat (certification of religiosity) to the Draft Offices. Olga obtained her  tatzhir via a Bais Din (Rabbinical Court), and properly submitted it to the Tel HaShomer Draft Office. She was subsequently summoned to a Rayon Dat (a "religiosity interview").  On Nov.19, '18, almost 1-1/2 years ago, she  met the Army draft officers (apparently being totally uninformed of the halachic and practical objections to submitting to these religiosity interrogations), and she answered the questions properly.  Nevertheless, the draft offices refused to grant her the religious exemption from Army service, to which she is legally entitled.

They then summoned her to another interview. She made the trip down again, only to hear the (ostensibly religious) female Army officer inform her that the Army is rejecting her petition for a religious exemption. The officer provided no reason for the rejection.

Of course, enlisting women altogether is prohibited by Torah law, even if done fully willingly. However, in this case, lacking basis for rejecting her petition, the Israeli Army is breaking Israeli law as well, by denying Olga her entitlement to a religious exemption (as her attorney informed the Army in a formal complaint filed this January).

Additionally, the Army officer tried convincing Olga to enlist - DESPITE clearly being a Ba'alas Teshuvah. Some readers unfamiliar with the Orthodox milieu may not fully realize the degree of sheer antireligious Israeli chutzpah on full display here.  To even venture to suggest that a Ba'alas Teshuvah enlist at the beginning of her process of strengthening herself in her newly-found religious heritage is the height of temerity. And that's even coming from a liberal secular perspective. Far worse: the officer did so AS a religious woman. 

B"H, Olga remained resolute. She elaborated, stating that she's seeking to become something better than what she currently is. (That's a statement all of us ought consider.) The "religious" officer was unmoved by Olga's steadfast devotion, and even ended with a genteel but clear threat to Olga: "being a deserter ("Arikah") isn't pleasant." Readers of our columns will recognize how politely that euphamizes the sum total of the female Israeli Refusenik experience.

Olga was hit with a draft date in October - this past October. That's about six MONTHS of being absent from the Army.  Imagine the ongoing psychological pressure that imposes on a young person, and a Ba'alas Teshuvah in particular. There is NO excuse for tolerating such persecution of a religious girl, or of any girl. We will be judged (and very possibly are being judged, at this juncture) for not raising a storm of protest over the ongoing abuse of Olga, and hundreds and hundreds of girls and women like her. They suffer in silence because we wallow in silence over their plight.


C.  A few Torah sources on how tribulations prompt us to introspection, and a second look at the antireligious persecution of Olga S.

1.  The Gemara (Babylonian Talmud, tractate Brachos 5a) elaborates on "yisurin," tribulations. At the risk of the appearance of oversimplification, the general principle is that we deserve what we get. The outstanding question is specifically WHICH things we did can be identified as serving as causative factors in a particular tribulation that we're suffering. Rashi there, s.v. "pishpaish;" explains that we are to utilize the yisurin we're experiencing to identify the types of sins we've committed that match those yisur.

2. Similarly, according to Rav Chaim of Volozhin OB"M (in his commentary "Ru'ach Chaim" on Pirkei Avos (4:14), as well as in his "Nefesh HaChayim"), a central function of the Divine principle (Hanhogah) of "Mida Keneged Mida" is to serve the purpose of aiding us in identifying which iniquity precipitated the given punishment. Thereby, we can identify which particular sin G-d is beckoning us to repent from, via those tribulations. See also the Rambam, Mishneh Torah, Hil. Ta'anis, 1:1-3.

3. The Maharsh"a at the end of Gittin 58a states that the Churban HaBayis (second) was triggered by an individual act of wickedness (detailed there) which was not (properly) protested by the Jewish community. That failure to protest evoked the Heavenly Wrath that finalized the decree to destroy the Second Jewish Commonwealth.

4. That incident, described in Gittin, pales in comparison with what commonly occurs nowadays, in a multitude of areas. That would also include the ongoing travesties covered in these posts, in regards to innocent Jewish girls being forced to serve in the notoriously promiscuous, exploitative Israeli Army. (Again, females serving in the Army is prohibited according to all leading Torah authorities, regardless of religious observance, ethnicity, etc.).

5. That fact should give us ample cause to consider the role of  systemic corruption in allowing this crime wave against Bnos Yisroel to be perpetuated, and even facilitated by frum parties. And, above all, we ought consider what we could do about it, and what we are not doing. Of course, then we ought consider possible consequences of those failures, that appear to be hitting us between the eyes in recent weeks.

6. In our Jewish Press Dispatch column of Nov. 15, '19 (p. 17), we reported on the case of the aforementioned Ba'alas Teshuva, Olga Shamilov, about 19 y/o, who was (illegally) denied her religious exemption from Israeli Army military service, without even the pretext of a justification.

7. Generally,  Israeli law requires the Army to provide a girl an automatic religious exemption once the Army receives her religious verification documentation, unless they can show a substantial reason to dispute it. 

8.  In Olga's case, the Israeli Army spectacularly failed to present any objections to her religiosity, and, in the second interview, stunningly acknowledged her Ba'alas Teshuva profile.  What is even more revealing of unbridled arrogance is the fact that the Army didn't  even bother trying to provide her with a semblance of a rationale. Adding insult to injury, the Army had her schlep down to an interview just to inform her of what they could have easily told her by mail and phone: they're denying her request for her legal entitlement to a service exemption. Apparently, they  planned to use the pretext of the meeting to prevail on this Ba'alas Teshuva to forgoe her newly rediscovered religious heritage (one the antireligious establishment made sure to keep at bay) - in order to make her "contribution" to the country (or, somewhat more precisely, to the hormonal needs of some of the men who are purportedly so dedicated to protecting the Jewish People).

9. That interview, her second, was interesting for other reasons as well.  She was interviewed by a female Army officer who tried trafficking her into the Army on the basis of Army service not proving disruptive of her own religious lifestyle. The Army officer described herself in line with the Dati Le'umi (national religious) community. 

10.  Well, how Dati (religious) she is in her personal life, I really don't know. But "Le'umi," certainly not. What type of "Jewish nationhood" will be left over if even the religious women start enlisting in droves, as is a declared Israeli Army goal? Just talk to candid Mizrachi /national-religious oriented people in the post-Army milieu to hear about what goes on, what women are subjected to, and how emotionally and psychologically unfit many post-Army women unfortunately are for a Torah-marriage and raising a family. (Time spent speaking with anti-Zionist types, or most Chareidi people, about this particular topic is usually not well spent. Most of them have precious little idea of how bad it is on the ground, because it's so far removed from their milieu.)

11.  We hope not to need to revisit this case, but if we do, some religious politicians will have a lot of explaining to do.


  1. The united synagogue in UK, biggest orthodox community, is saying they are digging graves at one every half hour. I don't think anyone is really interested in feinberg or his regular nonsense column.

  2. “Ongoing IDF Antireligious Hate Under Corona” Sorry not reading.
    Where in the Tanakh do we find an example of Coronavirus ?
    “The Adversary answered the Lord, Skin for skin—all that a man has he will give up for his life. But lay a hand on his bones and his flesh, and he will surely blaspheme You to Your face. So the Lord said to the Adversary, See, he is in your power; only spare his life. The Adversary departed from the presence of the Lord and inflicted a severe inflammation on Job from the sole of his foot to the crown of his head. He took a potsherd to scratch himself as he sat in ashes. His wife said to him, You still keep your integrity! Blaspheme God and die! But he said to her, You talk as any shameless woman might talk! Should we accept only good from God and not accept evil? For all that, Job said nothing sinful.” (Job 2:4-10).
    We don’t know why. We don’t know why the holocaust.
    “After the Lord had spoken these words to Job, the Lord said to Eliphaz the Temanite, I am incensed at you and your two friends, for you have not spoken the truth about Me as did My servant Job. Now take seven bulls and seven rams and go to My servant Job and sacrifice a burnt offering for yourselves. And let Job, My servant, pray for you; for to him I will show favor and not treat you vilely, since you have not spoken the truth about Me as did My servant Job.” (Job 42:7-8).
    Where was God during the holocaust? “These three men ceased replying to Job, for he considered himself right. Then Elihu son of Barachel the Buzite, of the family of Ram, was angry—angry at Job because he thought himself right against God. He was angry as well at his three friends, because they found no reply, but merely condemned Job.” (Job 32:1-3).
    We don’t know why the Coronavirus. We don’t know why the holocaust. We don’t know why God struck Job: “The Adversary departed from the presence of the Lord and inflicted וַיַּךְ אֶת a severe inflammation אִיּוֹב בִּשְׁחִין רָע מִכַּף on Job from the sole of his foot to the crown of his head וְעַד קָדְקֳדוֹ.” (Job 2:7)
    We have no reply Where was God during the holocaust? --- other than to blame the victims, not making aliya or whatever. Oh, Elihu son of Barachel the Buzite, of the family of Ram, also has no reply...

  3. May I announce? Just now! I got email marked in red update on my motion to the Kings Supreme Court for index 54688-2012.. There are 9 motions. Motion 1 2 and 3 no change. This was the Contested Judgment of Divorce Judge Eric I. Prus signed 9/10/2013. Changes are denied to my motions 4 5 6 8 and 9. Change is granted to Susan’s motion 7.
    Will they calendar my motion April 20, 2020 ?
    4.See Exhibit B SCOTUS filed May 10, 2019 Petition Docket 18--9390. I request Susan to return to me the \$10,000 she stole from me. See Exhibit B for details.
    5.See Exhibit C Pacer April 9, 2020 ruling on Mendel Epstein Appeal. Mendel Epstein appealed for reduction of his 10-year jail sentence “in light of the heightened risk to him posed by the spread of COVID-19 based on his age and other severed health related issues.” I, too, request the end of TIAA paying $1,000 monthly of my pension to Susan. TIAA sent me in 2019 45% of my pension $9,612 and sent 55% of my pension $11,747 to my ex-wife Susan Aranoff 092405101 at 498 East 18 Street Brooklyn, NY 11226 USA

    6.See Exhibit D November 18, 2016 Judge Prus ruling. I request the Court, Susan, and TIAA to show compassion to me with this pandemic Coronavirus. I will be 75 this December 1. I live in Bnei Brak, Israel. I'm overdrawn in my bank account. I have no assets. I live with my wife, Yemima, who is retried and with 2 of our daughters, Tamar and Sapphire Rivka, students, not yet married. Thank God we have no health related issues.

  4. Everyone with an agenda is using this crisis to push it. No one really cares.

  5. Allow me to show what I’m up against with Judge Eric I. Prus Brooklyn Supreme Court. He signed on November 18, 2016:
    “Mr. Aranoff objects to the payment of 55% of the TIAA-CREF pension to the defendant. The papers are replete with statements, letters, and materials that have no bearing on the application or the underlying matrimonial proceeding and its resolution...Mr. Aranoff is ordered not to contact this court, the clerk’s office or chamber’s staff as all his requests are time barred and nothing less than a waste of this court’s time and resources.”
    With the update on index number 54688/12 my motions 8 and 9 are decided (in red letters) dated November 16, 2016. Do I have a chance of getting back my pension?
    I remind people Susan Aranoff is the author of: The Wed-Locked Agunot: Orthodox Jewish Women Chained to Dead Marriages.


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