Category: Haredim

Time and time again Rabbi Yitzhak Yosef erupts with loutish tirades, attacking Israel, secular Israelis, and Russian immigrant would-be-converts. The system and criteria for choosing Israel’s next chief rabbis must be changed. In 2023, Israel can elect cosmopolitan and reasonable chief rabbis.
The Meron misfortune reflects a larger problem that Israel has with haredi politics, in which Aryeh Deri is a key culprit. The Shas leader should be shamed out of Knesset.
Haredi leadership seems to prize communal autonomy above all, even at the expense of exposure to deadly illness. Yanki Kanievsky is a metaphor for such “unbearable lightness,” the preposterous and perilously cavalier haredi assertion of freedom.
The drafting or exemption of haredi men from military service is back as the super-stumbling block before Netanyahu’s new government. Here are two possible solutions.
It would be disastrous if the Supreme Court shuts down gender-separate college programs. This would kill the slow but measurable and exciting movement of haredim into the workforce – which is crucial for the Israeli economy and the future of Israeli society.
A haredi middle class is rising, one which has dispensable income and is developing wider lifestyle horizons. The ripening of this segment in haredi society raises captivating and critical questions. Perhaps it offers new pathways of navigating modernity for haredi and secular Israeli society.
Religious Zionist yeshiva deans this week established an independent, conversion court, without Chief Rabbinate imprimatur. The ossified and extremist Rabbinate bureaucracy made this necessary, sadly. Unless the Rabbinate wakes up and “converts” itself into a more compassionate halachic religious services provider, it will be bypassed and wither away.
David M. Weinberg is a think tank director, columnist and lobbyist who is a sharp critic of Israel’s detractors and of post-Zionist trends in Israel. Read more »
A passionate speaker, David M. Weinberg lectures widely in Israel, the U.S. and Canada to Jewish and non-Jewish audiences. He speaks on international politics and Middle East strategic affairs, Israeli diplomacy and defense strategy, intelligence matters and more. Click here to book David Weinberg as a speaker
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