mail-jewish Vol.65 #18 Digest

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Nov 30, 2021, 3:33:57 PM11/30/21
Mail.Jewish Mailing List
Volume 65 Number 18
Produced: Tue, 30 Nov 21 15:33:55 -0500

Subjects Discussed In This Issue:

A Post Corona Wedding Redo
[Susan Buxfield]
Agudah Convention Holds Incredible Shidduch Crisis Panel
[Joel Rich]
Committee Of Israeli Rabbis Appeals to Shura Islamic Council
[Prof. L. Levine]
[David Ziants Martin Stern]
Eating Donuts on Chanukah
[Prof. L. Levine]
Kyle Rittenhouse and Chaim Walder
[Susan Buxfield]
Public Menorah lightings
[Martin Stern]
Second gentleman lights first candle at National Menorah ceremony
[Prof. L. Levine]


From: Susan Buxfield <>
Date: Mon, Nov 29,2021 at 08:17 AM
Subject: A Post Corona Wedding Redo

Martin Stern wrote (MJ 65#17):

> Rabbi Yair Hoffman wrote on VIN news (28 Nov. '21):
>> All her life, the Kallah was looking forward to her wedding. We can well
>> imagine what was in her head:
>> ...
>> Alas, instead, she had a small Corona-era backyard wedding with two people on
>> watch to ensure that the modest festivities not be broken up by the police,
>> or the Department of Health. All of her siblings had enjoyed lavish and
>> stunningly magnificent weddings.
>> True, she had had a child in the interim, but still. Could she possibly have
>> another wedding? A redo, so to speak?
>> She asked her parents. Her parents were very wealthy gvirim. They responded
>> to her question as follows, If you receive permission from a Posaik to allow
>> it we will do it.
>> ...
> I was appalled that anyone should have even considered making such a rerun,
> which would have had no halachic validity (and might have involved making
> berachot levatalah r"l) and would have involved an exhibition of conspicuous
> waste. It is bad enough that some people feel it necessary or appropriate to
> flaunt their wealth (hopefully not borrowed from public funds) in this way
> even for a genuine wedding.

If the halachic concerns (bracha levatala etc) can be overcome, then why care
how people spend their money? Ethical considerations are the domain of the
community hosting the event. The Gerer Hasidim as is well known have limiting rules.


From: Joel Rich <>
Date: Mon, Nov 29,2021 at 08:17 AM
Subject: Agudah Convention Holds Incredible Shidduch Crisis Panel

Prof. L. Levine wrote (MJ 65#17):

> In a virtual panel discussion on the Shidduch Crisis, Rav Elya Ber Wachtfogel,
> the Rosh Yeshiva of the Yeshiva in South Fallsburg, adamantly stated that the
> current system of Shidduchim was not working.
>> The panelists presented some very shocking statistics. Almost 1 out of 7
>> young ladies age 29 and up are not married and 1 out of 4 young ladies age 24
>> are not married. There are a number of 21 year old girls that have not even
>> had a date.
> I would like to see similar statistics for young men. What is the story with
> them regarding marriage?
>> The solution that Reb Gershon [Barnett] discussed with Rav Wachtfogel is to
>> lower the age gap and have young men start dating a full year earlier. Reb
>> Gershon stated that he went with Reb Malkiel to Rav Chaim Kanievsky who fully
>> backed the idea.
> I fail to see how this will help young ladies aged 29 and up who are not
> married. I also fail to see how this will help the 1 out of 4 young ladies
> aged 24 who are not married.

They were talking going forward. Interestingly they didn't suggest boys
marrying older girls (actually not a bad idea)

Joel Rich


From: Prof. L. Levine <>
Date: Mon, Nov 29,2021 at 03:17 PM
Subject: Committee Of Israeli Rabbis Appeals to Shura Islamic Council

VINnews (29 Nov.'21) reports:

> Tens of rabbis contacted the head of the Shura Council, who is the religious
> leader of the Ra'am political party headed by Mansour Abbas. The rabbis
> requested that the leader, Sheikh Hamed Abu Dabbas, intervene to prevent the
> Israeli government from harming religious life.
> ...
> Our political representatives always stood firm and prevented any harm for the
> Islamic religion. Now there are political emissaries who have violated the
> covenant and instead of loving and respecting faith, they are helping the
> haters of faith and those who violate religion. Moreover, they are cooperating
> with them to uproot the Jewish rabbinical leaders and the Jewish laws.

[I would not be surprised if these rabbis are affiliated to the Neturei Karta - MOD]

See for more:

I can only imagine how bad things if Israeli rabbis must turn to Muslims for
help with Judaism.

I have to wonder how many Israelis would respond to the question "Are you
Jewish?" by saying, "No, I am an Israeli."

Any thoughts?



From: David Ziants <>
Date: Mon, Nov 29,2021 at 05:17 AM

Prof. L. Levine (MJ 65#17) wrote:

>> I just saw this report on Vinnews:
> port-forced-to-leave-and-desecrate-shabbos/?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=e
> mail
>> Five members of the South African Jewish community who flew to Israel to
>> offer consolation to the family of Eli Kay HyD, who was murdered in the
>> terror attack last Sunday, were detained at Ben Gurion airport. A new
>> directive prevents foreigners from "red" countries including South Africa
>> from entering Israel.
>> Ilana Smith, who had specially made the long journey from South Africa to
>> console her close friend Devorah, the mother of Eli, landed last night in
>> South Africa. After Shabbat Smith said that "they treated us like criminals.
>> They asked questions and told us to be quiet. I told them that I cannot
>> desecrate the Sabbath and they replied that they would arrest me if I did
>> not get on the plane. I didn't eat for more than 24 hours and for the first
>> time in my life I desecrated the Shabbos. In Dubai they were nicer, at least
>> they explained to us what was happening and why it happened...
> Apparently the "Jewish" State is not very concerned about Judaism in some
> cases. Note that the Arabs in Dubai were more considerate of the Torah values
> of these people.
> Thoughts?

Without judging anyone at a time of such psychological pressure - in my opinion
the correct action would have been that each of the people involved should have
accepted arrest rather than desecrate Shabbat - and make it clear why they are
accepting arrest. Under arrest in Israel, I am sure they would have been
provided lechem mishneh and grape juice for Shabbat meals as well as the food
being kosher.

Travelling to Israel from a "red" country like they did, however noble the
purpose, does not sound right as we are talking about a situation of possible
piku'ach nephesh and there have been many situations where people have had to
miss out on special events of close relatives because of corona. If they wanted
to make a political statement (although I thought that one could travel to
Israel provided one accepts quarantine), or also if it was an erroneous
judgement on their part with regard to travel restrictions, then accepting
arrest seems to me the correct course of action.

David Ziants


From: Martin Stern <>
Date: Mon, Nov 29,2021 at 08:17 AM

In response to Prof. L. Levine (MJ 65#17):

With hindsight, it was probably ill-advised for Ilana Smith and the other South
Africans to travel to Israel from South Africa if it were classified as a "red"
country though it was not clear to me whether the Israeli ban had been imposed
before their departure.

On the other hand, I am not sure that Ms Smith did actually desecrate Shabbat
since getting on a plane, as such, does not involve any melachah [forbidden
work] and she was acting under duress [ones]. Perhaps she should have accepted
arrest but she might have been afraid of ill-treatment by the prison staff.

However their treatment by the Ben Gurion security staff was absolutely
disgraceful At the very least they should have held them in custody until after
Shabbat and only deported them after it was out.

Martin Stern


From: Prof. L. Levine <>
Date: Mon, Nov 29,2021 at 03:17 PM
Subject: Eating Donuts on Chanukah

I have no recollection of donuts being associated with Chanukah when I was
growing up (Keep in mind that I am 80 and very much Ashkenazi). My mother made
latkes. However, today eating donuts is very much associated with Chanukah.

What do others on MJ remember from their youth?



From: Susan Buxfield <>
Date: Mon, Nov 29,2021 at 08:17 AM
Subject: Kyle Rittenhouse and Chaim Walder

Two men amongst many others have recently been lambasted as guilty long before
their day in court. But that is where the similarity ends.

Kyle Rittenhouse owned a dangerous but legal weapon may have been deemed a
security risk on his arrest and therefore the pernicious charges leveled against
him may be understandable within the toxic racial environment found all
over the USA .

Chaim Walder was accused of historical sexual offenses and has been hounded not
only by the secular Haaretz newspaper but terminated by Eichler Books, Feldheim,
Yated and Radio Kol Chai. We are not talking about current allegations where any
employer or publisher should do everything to protect the public.

This guy has a clean background except for one historical allegation from over
20 years ago that the police closed for lack of evidence. The tools have been
there for decades for the anonymous victims to file their complaints to the
police and yet until last week, on the prompting of the Haaretz investigative
team, no one bothered to complain. And now, all of a sudden, dozens of
accusations have been leveled by these anonymous historical victims.

The vast majority of historical rape cases are rarely prosecuted since the most
rudimentary factor in any court case is to prove that there was an actual non
consensual action involved. And yet in all these types of cases the defendant is
considered guilty until proven innocent. His name is released for immediate
vilification while his presumed victims hide under the legal cover of anonymity.

But that was the goyishe minhag until this month when these frum organizations
decided to go along with the trend. Is there not an issue of Malbin Panim
Berabim [shaming a person without due process]? And adding salt to the wound the
Chief Rabbi of Tzfat has ranted about his indecency and lack of morality being a
well known and beloved author.

No Beit Din hearing, no arrest, and no court case as yet. There seems to be some
underlying sources aiming to damage the credibility of the Charedi public by
slinging blows at their public figures. Six months ago Meshi Zahav from Zaka and
now Walder.

Comments please.


From: Martin Stern <>
Date: Mon, Nov 29,2021 at 09:17 AM
Subject: Public Menorah lightings

Further to what I wrote (MJ 65#17):

> There is a problem even with saying a berachah on lighting Chanukah lights in
> shul though the prevailing custom is to do so in the evening (but not in the
> morning) if it is a place where regular tefillos are held with a minyan, but
> it is highly doubtful whether this can be extended to other public displays

On the other hand, there is good reason to actually light Chanukah lights at
any gathering during Chanukah (though without a berachah) such as a public
shiur or Chanukah party. I was surprised that this was not done at the regular
minchah (gedolah) minyan I attended on the first day though it was obvious that it
had been lit at shacharit. Nobody had any explanation for its omission.

Martin Stern


From: Prof. L. Levine <>
Date: Mon, Nov 29,2021 at 02:17 PM
Subject: Second gentleman lights first candle at National Menorah ceremony

Doug Emhoff, husband to Vice President Kamala Harris, spoke at the National
Menorah lighting ceremony on Sunday for the first night of Hanukkah. He is the
first Jewish spouse of a president or a vice president, Emhoff has publicly
highlighted various tenets of his faith while his wife is in office.

See for more:

From the photo it is clear that Chabad was involved in this event. It seems to
make no difference to Chabd that he is married to a gentile.

What message do "Jewish" events like this, and the others mentioned on this web
page in which Emhoff is featured say to the world about intermarriage? To me
the message seems to be that intermarriage is fine.

However, it is not fine since it leads to the dissolution of the Jewish people.

Any thoughts?

Prof. Yitzchok Levine


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