Thursday, November 16, 2017


Toldos; If One Knows His Child Will Be A Rashah...

ny times

GADSDEN, Ala. — Alabama’s increasingly bizarre Senate race was convulsed again as four more women came forward on Wednesday to describe encounters with the Republican candidate, Roy S. Moore, and Mr. Moore’s campaign sharply questioned the credibility of another accuser.
The newest accusations came from women who ranged in age from about 18 to 28 at the time. They complained of being groped, forcibly kissed or subjected to unwanted advances.
One of them, Becky Gray, now 62, a retired teacher living in Gadsden, Ala., said in an interview that she was puzzled by Mr. Moore’s repeated overtures when she worked in the Gadsden Mall.
“I just couldn’t figure out why a man of his age spent every Friday and Saturday at the mall,” said Ms. Gray, who was then in her late teens or early 20s.
She said she frequently saw Mr. Moore, then in his 30s, talking with young women and did her best to avoid him. Ms. Gray said she eventually complained to her manager that he would not leave her alone and was later told that Mr. Moore had been banned from the mall.

Toldos; If One Knows His Child Will Be A Rashah...

The Brisker Rav famously explains, that Rivkah Imeinu - as a woman that does not have the מצוה of פרו ורבו- was able to say למה זה אנכי... A man on the other hand has no such liberty. That is why, explains the Brisker Rav, Chizkiyahu Hamelech, was told by Yishayahu Hanavi that he must get married. This, despite his having a valid reason for staying single- he knew he would have a son, a Rashah - Menashe Hamelech. 

Rav Chaim Shaul Kaufman זצוק''ל, in his ספר משחת שמן, asks from the נשי למך. They were woman and yet they were told that they should not refrain from having children...

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Rogochover and More by Marc B. Shapiro

Marc B. Shapiro

In a recent Jewish Review of Books (Summer 2017), I published a translation of an interview R. Joseph Rozin, the Rogochover, gave to the New York Yiddish paper, Der morgen zhurnal. You can see the original interview here. The fact that the Rogochover agreed to the interview is itself significant. As is to be expected, the content of the interview is also of great interest.

In the preface to the interview, I mentioned that the Rogochover famously studied Torah on Tisha be-Av and when he was an avel, both of which are in violation of accepted halakhah. When he was once asked why, while sitting shiva, he learnt Torah, he is reported to have replied:[1]

ודאי, עבירה היא זו, וכשאקבל עונש על שאר עונותי יענישוני אף על עון זה, אבל אני אקבל באהבה וברצון את העונש על חטא זה, וכדאית היא התורה להלקות עליה

R. Yissachar Tamar cites an eye-witness who reported that the Rogochover said basically the same thing in explaining why he learnt on Tisha be-Av, and noted how wonderful it will be to be punished for studying Torah.[2]

ומה נעים לקבל צליפות על עסק התורה

The Hazon Ish was told that the Rogochover learnt Torah when he was in mourning and that he made another antinomian-like comment in justification of his behavior, namely, that he wants to be in the gehinom of those who learn Torah. The Hazon Ish replied that “this gehinom is the same gehinom for the other sins.”[3]

The various comments quoted in the name of the Rogochover show his great need for studying Torah, a need that simply did not allow him to put aside his Torah study, even when halakhah required it. Yet the antinomian implication of the Rogochover’s comments was too much to be ignored. R. Gavriel Zinner’s reaction after quoting the Rogochover is how many felt.[4]

Tuesday, November 14, 2017

Williamsburg man busted for repeatedly raping pre-teen member of extended family

NY Daily News

An 18-year-old Brooklyn man raped a pre-teen member of his extended family, authorities said Monday.

Police arrested David Teitelbaum late Sunday and charged him with rape, sex abuse and acting in a manner injurious to a child younger than 17.

Teitelbaum, who has no previous arrest record, was arraigned on $15,000 cash bail Monday night.

His defense attorney denied all the allegations, noting that his client has no history of trouble with the law.

"He's a full time student," said defense attorney Israel Friend.

"And from what I was told, the complaining witness' mom doesn't want to go forward with the charges," he added.

A source familiar with the case also said the victim’s parents had stopped cooperating with police, fearful of the shame the incident will cause the family.

Prosecutors said the accused was 17 at the time of the alleged rape a year ago.

The incident occurred during the holidays while the families were visiting, and the adults were asleep.

Prosecutors said Teitelbaum pulled his pants down to expose himself to the girl and then penetrated her.

In another incident, Teitelbaum touched the girl over her skirt, the prosecutor said.

Authorities said the girl told her mother, and then later told a therapist.

The therapist didn't initially report the allegations to police. But when the therapist was told last month that the two families would be getting together again for the holidays, the police were notified.

The girl, whose age and relationship to the victim are being withheld to protect her identity, was attacked inside the suspect’s Williamsburg apartment, sources said.

At some point the girl told her mother the suspect had touched her inappropriately, but the family didn't alert the police, sources said.

“The guy rapes their daughter and they’re protecting him — unbelievable” said the source. “I can’t even imagine how angry I’d be if it was my daughter.”

After the therapist notified the NYPD, the Child Abuse Squad launched an investigation.

Monday, November 13, 2017

Chayei Sarah; Did Avrohom Avinu, Muzzle His Animals?

Published on Nov 9, 2017
Rashi in this weeks Parshah, quotes the Medrash Rabba twice that Avrohom Avinu's animals always had their distinct muzzle. However the Ramban shows that the second Medrash that Raashi quotes, seems to move away from that Pshat, and seems to conclude that they were NOT muzzled. How did Rashi understand that Medrash?... Why did the Medrash argue that there was no muzzle, only after it was mentioned twice?!... For questions and comments please email



I remember the moment distinctly, and it was almost a decade ago: a group of stylish women walked into the main sanctuary of my shul in Baltimore for a Torah class. They all had a similar panache about them, sporting long, curled sheitels (wigs) that reached mid-back, large designer handbags slung over the shoulders, and outfits that were trendy, expensive-looking and mainly black. I stood at the side of the room and observed something that was clearly a new “look.” I had never seen religious women look like this before (living outside of NY most certainly contributed). Sure, religious women always have worn expensive clothes and lots of black. But it was the sheitels — they now were the accessory that put it all together. And they were so long.


Jerusalem – Israeli Rabbis Tell IDF Chief Women Are Weakening The Army


Jerusalem – A group of leading Orthodox rabbis met with the Israeli army’s chief of staff to complain. According to Israel’s Arutz Sheva news website, the rabbis told Gadi Eisenkot on Tuesday that the growing ranks of female combat soldiers in the Israel Defense Forces are creating an immodest environment. They demanded changes to accommodate [...]

Never forget the Har Nof massacre

arutz 7

We used to feel safe.
We used to think that Har Nof was just another frum community in Yerushalayim.
But three years ago, everything that we thought was normal was shattered.
Terrorists stormed into our synagogue, our Mikdash Me’at, brutally slaughtering the bodies and stealing the Neshamos of Tzadikim wrapped in Talis and Tefilin.

Thursday, November 2, 2017

I Want ‘Allahu Akbar’ Back

ny time

Allahu akbar. It’s Arabic for “God is greatest.” Muslims, an eccentric tribe with over a billion members, say it several times in our five daily prayers. The phrase is also a convenient way to express just the right kind of gratitude in any situation.

I say “Allahu akbar” out loud more than 100 times a day. Yesterday, I uttered it several times during my late-evening Isha prayer. Earlier, during dinner, I said it with my mouth full after biting into my succulent halal chicken kebab. In the afternoon, I dropped it in a conference room at the State Department, where I’d been invited to address a packed room of government employees about the power of storytelling. Specifically, I expressed my continuing gratitude for the election of Barack Obama, whom, in a joking nod to the Islamophobic paranoia that surrounded him, I called “our first Muslim American president,” adding “Allahu akbar!”

People in the crowd laughed and applauded, the world continued to spin, no one had an aneurysm, and only a few people seemed to wonder with arched, Sarah Sanders-like eyebrows, “Wait, is he ...?” I even confess to saying “Allahu akbar” two days ago in a restroom after losing the battle, but ultimately winning the war, against a nasty stomach virus.

I’m 37 years old. In all those years, I, like an overwhelming majority of Muslims, have never uttered “Allahu akbar” before or after committing a violent act. Unfortunately, terrorists like ISIS and Al Qaeda and their sympathizers, who represent a tiny fraction of Muslims, have. In the public imagination, this has given the phrase meaning that’s impossible to square with what it represents in my daily life.