Can the Shtetl survive in the Western World?

The extreme charedim, such as Satmar and their ilk do not support the State of Israel. They do not want to take a cent from the Government. After all, this is not a Government made up of Shomer Shabbos people, and in addition, they consider the State as undermining and stopping the progress of the Geula. So what do they do? They prefer to quietly live amongst non-Jews. They don’t, however, just live in a spread out manner. They prefer homogenous enclaves within the non-Jewish States. As they get bigger, they also want to control those cities. They ask that other don’t ride on their bikes in an immodest manner while passing through their neighbourhoods and they take people to task for offending their principles whilst in what they term their neighbourhood.

How much longer can this last? A recent report suggests that Kiryas Yoel, may well be experiencing some fireworks in the not too distant future. Ironically, they might have been better off in the State of Israel.

Dissident leaders from Kiryas Joel filed a federal lawsuit Monday accusing the Satmar Hasidic community’s majority faction of abusing its control over municipal affairs and demanding the 34-year-old village be dissolved.
The 59-page complaint catalogs grievances dating back a decade and depicts a religious faction exercising uncontested power in the secular realm. The case, brought by Goshen attorney Michael Sussman, calls Kiryas Joel a “theocracy” that violates the First Amendment’s prohibition against the establishment of religion.
“Religion is wonderful,” Sussman said at a press conference in his office Monday, seated beside Joseph Waldman, a plaintiff and longtime dissident leader. “But it cannot dominate the state. And that is what is happening in Kiryas Joel.”
The case alleges discrimination against dissidents — estimated in court papers to comprise 40 percent of the village’s roughly 20,000 residents — in various facets of public life, from tax exemptions for synagogues to election improprieties to selective enforcement of village noise ordinances.
Among the most serious allegations is that Kiryas Joel’s Public Safety Department, a quasi-police agency, has acted as enforcers for the main congregation and tolerated acts of violence and intimidation against dissidents by unruly crowds of young supporters of Satmar Grand Rebbe Aron Teitelbaum, the leader of Kiryas Joel’s majority faction.
In one incident in August 2010, a mob of screaming boys — angry about a marriage held in a dissident wedding hall — allegedly hounded relatives of one of the newlyweds as they walked home from a synagogue after midnight. The complaint says the boys punched, kicked and threw bottles and eggs at the family, which included a pregnant woman.
The suit alleges that public safety officers passed by during the harassment and did nothing. Later, when the family members approached their destination, an officer parked nearby allegedly refused to escort them home.
The plaintiffs are asking a federal judge to dissolve the Village of Kiryas Joel, which would effectively remove its leaders, lift its laws and place it under the governance of the surrounding Town of Monroe. The village was incorporated in 1977 as a satellite of the Brooklyn-based Satmar sect.
If the judge won’t do that, the suit asks for the removal of the current village leaders, including the mayor, trustees and administrator.
The lawsuit comes in the wake of a much-publicized attack against a dissident in New Square, a Hasidic community in Rockland County roiled by the same sort of internal rift as the Satmar Hasidim. In that May 22 incident, a 43-year-old man suffered severe burns fighting off a young man who tried to burn down his home.
Sussman, who’s also representing the burn victim, Aron Rottenberg, announced Monday that he had filed a $36 million lawsuit in state court against New Square’s grand rebbe, David Twersky, and the 18-year-old aide suspected of starting the fire.

from here

Author: pitputim

I've enjoyed being a computer science professor in Melbourne, Australia, as well as band leader/singer for the Schnapps Band. My high schooling was in Chabad and I continued at Yeshivat Kerem B'Yavneh in Israel and later in life at Machon L'Hora'ah, Yeshivas Halichos Olam.

9 thoughts on “Can the Shtetl survive in the Western World?”

  1. This has nothing to do with offending their principles or about defending tznius. The people protesting are all for that and probably more. Their issue is that they are opposed to the current Rebbe of KY-RA, being either chassidim of his brother or some other offshoot after the petira of RY. Some are nk. Common goal-opposed to RA


  2. New Square is a village for Skvere chassidim. If you are a chossid, you obey the rebbe without question. If you’re not prepared to do that, don’t live in New Square. It’s really as simple as that. Arson is a terrible crime, and I have no sympathy for the perpetator, but I have no sympathy for the victim either. He’s a poresh min hatzibur and mored bemalchus, trying to subvert the rebbe’s village. Hagam lichbosh es hamalko imi baboyis. Let him sell his house and move out, and then he can do whatever he likes.

    KJ is a little different, because both sides claim to be loyal Satmar chassidim, but differ on which rebbe they recognise. Still, even according to the Zullies KJ is Aharon’s territory. The problem comes not from Zullies but from the Bnai Yoel, who don’t recognise the late R Moshe as a rebbe, let alone either of his sons.


    1. Come now. Don’t tell me you also think we have a melech in our midst? The Melech is the USA and if any Rebbe doesn’t like it, I suggest he move out of the country. Mored B’Malchus!!! Did you forget your smiley? sheesh


      1. Yes, we certainly do have melochim in our midst. מאן מלכי רבנן, and in each chassidus the rebbe is a melech. Going against the rebbe in his own chotzer is definitely meridoh bemalchus, no smiley intended.


  3. Touche!
    The USA for better or worse has chosen to separate State and Religion. In our present level of maturity this is probably a good thing. Witness the problems throughout the world where this does not exist!
    As Chareidi communities grow in size and start flexing their political muscle we are beginning to see familiar behaviour, until recently reserved for our Muslim cousins. Our (Jewish) aspirations can also lead to such destructive and antisocial behaviour as has begun to appear in Europe.
    Though we bewail the centuries of Galut in Europe, etc, it did teach us how to become more tolerant of others (not just the non-Jews) and hopefully gave us the maturiry that when the opportunity came to establish a democratic state we were in a position to take advantage of it.
    Over the past 60+ years how quickly we forget!
    Whether or not you view Medinat Yisroel as Hitchalta leGeula or not, if we cannot live ‘beshevet achim gam yachad’ then once again we will find ourselves back at the root cause of the churban.
    A true leader is cognisant not only of his followers but those outside the group and has compassion and consideration for them too.
    At the conclusion of meschta Sotah it describes the generation just before the Geula as possessing the face of a dog(?)!
    How so? Because, though a dog proceeds its master it constantly turns and looks back to see if the master is following. So too of many of today’s leaders, many lack true leadership qualities and therefore are constantly looking to the crowd for assurance in where they are leading them.
    May we merit to find a true leader very, very soon who has the vision and breadth knowledge as well as broad shoulders to properly lead us where we ought to be going.


Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: