Dei'ah veDibur - Information & Insight

A Window into the Chareidi World

8 Tammuz 5772 - June 28, 2012 | Mordecai Plaut, director Published Weekly










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An Interview With Rabbi Moshe Gafni

By Binyamin Y. Rabinowitz

A Decision on the Subject of Reform `Conversion' Bears Out the Majority Secular Stand in the Supreme Court

This past week, a battle was being waged by the chareidi representation in the Knesset against the government advocacy and in its wake, against the Supreme Court, which ordered salaries to be paid to Reform and Conservative rabbis. The inevitable question arises: Why must we deal with this band of clowns, whose support within the Israeli public is almost nonexistent? What would happen if those `rabbis', or as some people prefer to call them, community leaders, received salaries from the government budget?

Rabbi Gafni: Your question is in place. They don't, in fact, have any hold within the Israeli public, in contrast to the situation in the U.S. and in European countries. The average Israeli is either religious or secular. And even if he is secular, if he chooses to hold a religious ceremony, he will opt for it to be halachically correct rather than being a circus show put on by the Reform or Conservative rabbis. Our battle is really being waged against a group of anti-religious Israelis (mostly far left) which attempts to usurp from the Israeli government every vestige of Judaism, and exploits these comedians for their agenda of attacking Judaism.

How does this find expression?

Rabbi Gafni: This expresses itself through court rulings, primarily of the High Court, and the decisions made by the attorney general and his staff [who decided to pay the reform and conservative rabbis a salary]. Likewise in the secular press, which tries to empower them, contrary to all the rules governing any other group, in order to provoke and inflame the shomrei mitzvos public. In order to demonstrate how ridiculous are the courts' decisions, I will cite only one example of many:

The Supreme Court ruled that Reform conversion be recognized for the purpose of registration on Identity Cards. In the wake of this decision, the entry of nationality on the Identity Cards was abolished. Nine secular judges were for, and the one religious judge (Yitzchak Englard) was against. The one traditional judge (Yaakov Tirkel) abstained. Incidentally, this is the same Tirkel who has been attacking Dorit Beinish's recent decision and the majority opinion on the subject of the Tal law. He was in favor of continuing the present arrangement (the Tal Law) into the future. The decision regarding recognition of Reform conversion demonstrates the majority secular position within the Supreme Court, which is not a professional stand at all but a political agenda for undermining Judaism and hacking away at our sacred values.


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