Thursday, January 29, 2009

Is it all about the peyos?

I'm about to apologize for something I haven't done and may not do at all. I'm about to apologize for not caring about Jews in harm's way. How do I know this? after almost four years you just know what to expect, and I expect to be slammed for not caring about Jews. The issue I have is why they pick and choose their causes, as I guess we all do, but I'm not here to criticize myself... Currently - and for some years now - the Hatzoloh cause is that of the few Teimener Yidden remaining in that forsaken country, for some strange reason. It's safe to say that despite Satmar's efforts to help these Yidden they also hurt them by scaring them from going to Israel. So, the poor souls are left there to their own devices, at the mercy of the local Muslims, and await the occasional Satmarer Chossid who's allowed to visit them and bring them whatever he's allowed to bring in. Don't get me wrong; I don't intend on knocking the Hatzoloh work that Satmar does. I live in Monsey and I see many of those families, although I will say that they seem to be having a hard time acclamating to the community, peyos and Hungarian hats not withstanding.

I know all about Satmar and the Iranians. Rav Tov/Tiv, yeah. But I doubt that anybody in Satmar gets all warm and fuzzy when they speak of Iranian Jews. Mention Yemenites, however, and he'll get all excited! Firstly about the past, and also about the present. He'll get excited that the Tziyonim cut their peyos off, and how the Yemenites were the holiest Jews in the world. Why? because they sported long peyos! Then he'll be proud of the fact that many Teymener Mishpoches live in Satmar enclaves, wear traditional Satmar garb, and speak the Satmar dialect of Yiddish. No small feat, there's no doubt about that. So I wonder; I wonder if these Jews in trouble in a far away land were not as aesthetically similar to the Satmars would anybody care? would the Satmorim care? Would they be able to pull together such a list of Rabbonim from across the spectrum? Most of them looked dazed and unsure of why they're there. It's not they're gonna rile up their chassidim and congregants and demand better protection for the Teimonim, "so why I am here," Rabbi X is thinking to himself. Is it all about the peyos?!


Anonymous said...

You just mentioned such a case. Do the Iranian Jews look like the Satmars? They don't have peyes and most of them are very well educated even when they come here they all go to college. Rav Tov is a Satmar organization and they have rescued many many Iranian Jews.

Chaim Berlin tragedy said...

If Satmar organizations can save even one Jew from destruction then they have saved a world and done a great mitzva. It's wonderful that they even care about an outreach project to other Jews at all.

But just like in hilchos Shabbos there is a kli rishon, and a kli sheni and a kli shlishi, the question why Satmar cares about Yemenite Jews altogether, comes out that it's part of a kli shlishi, because (a) the "kli rishon" is Satmar's hate of Tziyonim, and Tziyonism, and (b) the "kli sheni" is Satmar's opposition to the State of Israel, the medina that's treif, hayotzei lidvareini, the Yemenite Jews only fit in as a cooled off nebechdikke "kli shlishi" being that it's not them that the real subject of the situation, but it's coming mikoach Satmar scoring points against Zionists, Zionism, and the State of Israel by advocating the cause of the Yemenites.

But one thing everyone misses, is that these kind of discussions are long outdated because the State of Israel is here to stay. About half of all the world's Yidden, including many Satmarer and Meah Sheamdikke Eidah HaChareisdikke Yidden live in Eretz Yisroel, and the discussions about saving Yemenite Jews is a discussion for fifty years ago and not today.

Years ago, when Satmar and all Chasidim and Charedim were small in number they could put up the defenses and block out the world. Today, Charedim and Chasidim flourish, their numbers are huge, they are wealthy, politically well-connected in America, Israel and Europe, they enjoy all the freedoms of modern political life, easy modern travel and total freedom of religion and the ability to build huge kehillas and mishpoches. So that when a group of people come together to talk about saving about 500 Jews still stuck in Yemen (because Satmar is using them as long-distance pawns in their frozen-in-time fight with the Tziyonim) it just comes across as a caricature when there are so many HUGE problems facing frum Jews, such as drop-outs and youth-at-risk from frum Yiddishskeit by the thousands, rising sholom bayis problems with infidelity and divorces on the rise, lack of business ethics and Charedim and Chasidim landing up in jail in increasing numbers, and making sure that because of creeping assimilation that running off with shiksas and shekutzim doesn't start becoming a huge problem right under everyone's noses.

So one of the main ways all Charedim and Chasidim in frum communities like to distrcat themselves and ease their own consciences is by focusing on all the anonymous "Yemens" and "Baalei teshuva" out there in the world, writing and talking about it, and trying to save the neshomas of people that if they knocked on the front doors of the frumme oilem, would get thrown out, but if it's some far off exotic place that doesn't effect you, suddenly there are meetings and publicity, for what? Maybe someone thinks it's just a way to make some fundraising events. Maybe there is some shem shomayaim in it. Mostly it's just a placebo that will do nothing for anyone when they get home and face their own problems.

By the way, it was interesting to see Rav Aron Shechter (RAS) of the Chaim Berlin yeshiva sitting near the Skulener Rebbe. At least he does not limit himself. He welcomes MOdern Orthodox NCSY students to CB, he pushes for Lev Le'Achim, he welcomes BTs into CB and he worries about the Iranians and the Yemenites. An equal opportunity worrier for the nidachim, which only intensifies the question why he agreed to have Isaac Hersh banished by his BT father Michael to Tranquility Bay in far off Jamaica?

Simonim/Payos said...

The tzeig has a problem
He bought into the lubavitch propaganda that peyos has no mesorah, that not the the maskilim and their cohorts propagated against leaving Simonim (for the last 2000 years in Yemen Payos are called Simonim ) and here we still see leftovers from a mesorah that still has peyos , I know it bothers you, that's what happens when you mingle between assimilantes, gradually you end up like them ,drinking vodka on yat kislev separating your self from the talmidei hagra doesn't do the job, Payos does
one day those lubavitcher that will to return wiil gorow payos again and the rest will fade away like barry and leibel

Anonymous said...

"But I doubt that anybody in Satmar gets all warm and fuzzy when they speak of Iranian Jews."
satmer via rav tov has helped thousands Iranian Jews to come out of Iran and settle in various countries with out one Iranian to become a satmerer, millions of dollars has been raised in satmer to smuggle Jews out of Iran and established them into various kehilos, thats called leshem shumiem
but that does not impress you because it does not fit into your zionistic plans

Hirshel Tzig - הירשל ציג said...

Zionistic plans?

what are my Zionistic plans, exactly?

am I too a Zionist agent?

across the spectrum said...

The only reason lubavitcer rabbonim were not part of this ACHDUS spectrum,is because they are fully financed by reform and zionist donors, and these rabbonim will not blindly follow the zionist approach,
THAT rabbi "dazed and unsure" but was thinking: Yes! Zionist collaboration was a step up stone for lubavitch but maybe not for the Yemenite Jews

Anonymous said...

collaboration maybe not, just total frei out..... No other group of Jews was that naive when they came to Israel. They bought the whole pot of lokshen that the Tziyonim sold them...

I would imagine that none of the Lubavitcher Rabbonim were invited, not that they didn't want to attend...

Anonymous said...

Hirshel Tzig - הירשל ציג said...
Zionistic plans?
what are my Zionistic plans, exactly?am I too a Zionist agent?
Friday, January 30, 2009 10:44:00 AM
every lubavitcher is a Zionist agent
thats why why you cant collaborate with anti zionist

Hirshel Tzig - הירשל ציג said...

ok, so where's my check from the Zionists?


Anonymous said...

Hirshel Tzig - הירשל ציג said...
ok, so where's my check from the Zionists?
shazar gave it to the rebbe ,for the time being you are doing fine job, but as a volunteer,maybe....

Hirshel Tzig - הירשל ציג said...

did Shazar bring cash? or just checks?


Hirshel Tzig - הירשל ציג said...
did Shazar bring cash? or just checks?Friday, January 30, 2009 11:46:00 AM
whow !!!!what a famus Kashya on "VAYISHUKEIHU" the mefurshm say that Luvon asked what did you bring cash or checks?

Anonymous said...

So far we only know that Arafat YMS gave money to the arch anti zionisst Moshe Hirsch as was reported in the NYT after Arafat finally croaked, No wonder Frieman with the wide brim hat became a simple Schnorer.

Anonymous said...

Rav Tov is a failure from day one, it was built to counter the Russian Jews from aliyah by influencing them not to go to Eretz Yisroel in the name of saving their souls. In the meantime they ended up in Germany Austria or the USA where they built a big organized Mafia and are assimilating in the 1000's, and are lost from Klal Yisroel forever. Gedolim vetovim got snookered in in this fiasco as Rav Krieswuth , Rav Hirschprung. Satmar tried hard to put up neutral people to make it look international.Nobody will ever ask them where is the Russian jewery in the diaspora???

Anonymous said...

Most Yeminite bochurim were ejected from the Monroe Yeshiva they were overly involved in ... education, Remember they were farm boys.

lubab said...

The Tzig is simply jealous of peyos.
The Goat knows that the *real*Jewish look is a beard with peyos.Not the long hair,jeans and brown shoes he is dying to wear.
Not the light grey hat and white gloves either.
Didon fortz.

Anonymous said...

You think that Tzig is more jealous on Reb Mechel Lebowich with peyos biz the pupik then Reb Moshe Fienstien with a eidele hadras ponim

Shmuel Grainom said...

do you still feel guilty for when you cut off your own peyos to help you conform to the lubavitch "look" ?

I'm sure you remember very clearly exactly where and when you did it and the accomanying feelings.

schneur said...

Rabbu Yehiyah Kafah of Jerusalme one of the best know Yemenite scholars writes in his sefer halichos Teiman that Peyoth were forced on the Yemenite Jews in the Middle Ages by the Muslim authorities as away of indicating their Jewishness not unlike the various signs Jews were made to wear the most recent being the Star of David the Nazis forced us to wear. rav Kafah himself did not have peyoth.
and may I add that Rav Kafah is not alone in his opinion of the origin of peyoth in Yemen.
In Russia jews did wear long peyoth until the mid 19th century and then were forced to chnage the style, by the Czarist authorities.Thus Lithuanian Jews , and Ukranian jews did not have long peyoth the exception being the rabbonim some of whom had peyoth. In Lita the Mussar leadrs were the make bepatish in doing away with peyoth. As we see the Alter of Slobodka had not peyoth.

Anonymous said...

The yemenite jews have their own garb for 1000's of years. Why in the world does Satmar believe that changing to the Shtufene cholent pot and the $2000.00 fur hat is more minhag yisroel then the long white garb of the yemenite jews? Are the Ukraine/Galiciener goyim ( thats the source for the Eastern European jews levush)holier then the middle eastern goyim? In Monroe there is a Nasader shul with a rov a yemeni. Is nasad more original yiddishkiet then minhogei Tiemon of the rambam? what about mesorah that is the major hungarian obssesion?

Anonymous said...

You mean Reb Yosef grandson of Reb Yehiya

Anonymous said...

Rav Yosef Kafa has a big part in rebuilding the Yemnite kehila with the most original customs possible.

Anonymous said...

Great post. I am no great lover of Lubavitch, but at least their chassadim were not sinister. They reached out and were mosser nefesh, even if much of it was to push their Rebbe and worldview on all of us, without cynical agendas.

Satmars are evil, conniving operators, and there is always a agenda with them.

Anonymous said...

The real depth of this Assifa was for Reb Aaron to show the other side that he his melech haolom, and his brother had to jump on the bandwagon, don"t youever think some Lesham shomaim, as Rav Brody said by a satmar event today every halacha problem that comes up Hilchos Pesach, Shmemitta,Triefas is basicaly a problem in Hilchos Nachlos,

Anonymous said...

anyone else notice rabbom asher kalmanowitz on the dais?

how the flip did he get his long nose into this?

oh, that's right....he has a long nose.

Fritzi said...

i prefer a yid without peyot/peyes/simonim rather than peyot/peyes/simonim without a yid

An Ailmesher said...


It's not related to this article but you gotta post this video of R. Aharon Teitlebaum dancing to ופרצת that I just came across. He is after all a descendant of the alter rebbe.

shulem said...

What is about peyos that bothers you??
Did you notice that there were some very special people at this gathering, including the Skulener Rebbe shlit'a?
Are you accusing him to?
(then this shaygetz gets angry when the Lubavitcher credentials are challenged)

Der Shygetz said...


The Uforatzto nigun does not date back to the Alter Rebbe. It was either composed or found/modified from an older niggun or tune by R' Yosef Marton, a gevorener of Ingarish origin.

Anonymous said...

Is tzig/pig the regular chassidishe terminology in Skulen or you are baal teshuva thru chesed leavraham? and u didnt cleanse yet from the goishkiet?

Yankel said...

Off topic.

I'm not bahavent enough in Israeli politics which are coming up next week,I believe.Anyway, I see there is a whole argument between ana'sh about who to vote for.Either the Ichud Leumiy (i think) which is very opposed to land concessions or for Aguda.R'Tuvya Blau has a whole letter on COL how important it is to vote for Aguda.
Can you maybe give us more backround and tell us who you would vote for?

shulem said...

Anon 4:51
Sounds like you don't like peyos either.
It's ok, your rebbe did not like them either.If he had yiddishe levush and peyos maybe he would not have been able to attend university

mnuez said...


I'm not currently shomer shabbos and am certainly not a satmerer so I'm not speaking up on their behalf as one of them.

At one point earlier on in life I was involved in a case of hatzalas nefashos of a frei guy living in one of the countries of the FSU. I needed to raise a large amount of money for him and quickly. Someone got me in touch with "Mister Roth" from "Rav Tiv" (Tov) and they sent me the largest donation of the bunch. I had absolutely no kesher with them and I was not chassidische and this fellow was not frum and AT NO POINT did they try to influence me or him in any way yet they sent me a check that was so significant that it may even have been meakeiv.

I love Rav Tiv and Mister Roth (whom I've still never met) with my whole heart. He was my partner in being maztil nefesh achas meyisrael and he never asked for anything return and, again, never tried to influence me or the yid in question.

I offer this testimony to the jury and ask that it be entered into evidence. If the truth were even slightly other than what I've written then I would have written that.

Anonymous said...

The old skulener and the rebbe shlita didn"t show their peyoth neither, the todays rebbe started to curl it after his wife passed away,Did they need admission to some college?

Milhouse said...

The article to which Yankel refers is here. R Blau makes some very valid points. This one certainly rings true:

האמת היא שמאחורי ההשקפות האמורות יש סגידה פופוליסטית להלך הרוח המסוכן שבין חלקים מן הנוער שלנו, לצערנו. פשוט מאד: הזדהות ותחושת שותפות עם הציבור החרדי מטילה, כביכול, כבלים על הנוער בתחומים שונים (וזה לכשעצמו רצונו הקדוש של כ"ק אדמו"ר זי"ע ואכמ"ל), והמבין יבין. יש כאן, לא פחות ולא יותר מאשר, מלחמת שחרור של הנפש הבהמית.

Nevertheless, he has not convinced me. In particular I think he is perpetrating a fallacy when he links the Rebbe's call to vote for המפלגה הכי חרדית with the Agudah. The fallacy, I think, is that the term "charedi" did not always mean "black hat". That meaning seems to me to have evolved in the '70s. The term used to simply mean Orthodox. Consider the Hebrew title of the OU: התאחדות הקהילות החרדיות באמריקה. When the Rebbe said to vote for the most "chareidi" party, I think he meant it in that sense, not in the modern sense. A charedi is someone who is חרד לדבר ה׳, whether he wears jeans or a long jacket, and a shtreimel or a kippah srugah. The late Prof. Avner Shaki was very charedi, in this original sense, and he certainly had the Rebbe's support, despite being a dreaded zionist. And I think Ketzeleh also fits the bill.

Another thing R Blau ignores: the greatest proof of how the Rebbe regarded the issue of shleimus ho'oretz as overriding all other considerations, is what happened to the Rebbe's other big issue, Mihu Yehudi. For years this was the Rebbe's one big issue, he thundered and stormed about it, he attacked mercilessly those who entered a coalition without making this issue a priority, etc. And yet when the best attempt to achieve it failed, and it then became a matter of pikuach nefesh mamash, he invested his entire reputation on creating a narrow Shamir government and preventing a Peres government, despite the fact that Mihu Yehudi was off the table. And from then on one rarely heard of it any more; not, as some cynics would have us believe, because of money! But because pikuach nefesh overrode it.

R Blau tells us that today the Agudah's Moetzes Gedolei Hatorah has fully absorbed the lesson of shleimus ho'oretz, and is just as strong as the Ichud. 30 years ago the Moetzes was certainly in favour of fixing the Chok Hashvut, and yet it didn't happen, and the Agudah didn't make it happen, and certain members of the Agudah actively worked behind the scenes to prevent it from happening. Because while they might believe in these things in principle, when it comes down to the bottom line the Agudah, like Shas, believes in the three kofs: כסף, כיסאות, וכבוד. Nothing else will be allowed to stand in the way of these priorities.

By the way, see comment #56, which is a letter from the Frierdiger Rebbe from 1949, in favour of voting in Israeli elections. "בודאי חובה על כל אחד ואחד שראוי לבחור לא יוַתר על זכותו זה". I don't think anyone ever accused the FR of being a "zionist" ch"v!

yankel said...

Thank you for your input.
Thank God I don't have to vote! It seems that everybody in the frum right wing is trying to get the Lubavitch vote and there are about as many opinions as chasidim.
There was an interview with Rabbis Yeruslovsky and Gluchovsky on Shturem about who to vote for and both got out of it elegantly (or inelegantly)and
I've copied one comment from the site which sums up my feelings
"This is Chabad's Problem!
When our very own Rabbonim Shlit"a cant get up and talk to the point!
Tell Anash who to vote for.
Rabbi Gluckowski, You are a man of principle who says what he believes. How then do you not say it like it is. Tell Anash who to vote for.
Dont take the Rebbe's words and use them as an excuse 'lehitchakem' from the subject.
A real Rov and leader says it like it is.
All this is said with the greatest Kovod and Respect."

Hirshel Tzig - הירשל ציג said...


I agree 100%

schneur said...

Thanks for the correction. Its Yosef Kafah, R. Yihya was his grandfather and founder of teh Dardaim - Dor Deah group.I have only seen East European Peypth among the Yemenite JEws anmd their neighboring comunities. I have never seen N. African jews with peyoth, nor Iraqi Jews . I have seen pictures of Kurdish Jews with peyoth.

yankel said...

As I said I'm not bahavent in Israeli politics, especially with the demise of the old Mizrachi party Mafdal and the new incarnations, like Ichud Leumi, which apparently will get many Chabad votes.
So maybe you can get some of your Israeli correspondents to report?
Also it seems that Aguda is not very popular amongst the frummeh after the fight over the elections in Yerushalayim which has left bad feelings for the Gerer chasidim who control the Hamodia and many other Aguda institutions.
Derech agav, I never ever got the story with the elections in Yeushalayim:Meir Porush was already a member of the Knesset, why did he want to also grab the Jerusalem mayoralty,something akin to a power grab where everything in frum politics seems to be factional,ve'od vhu haikkor,Lopoliansky who was the mayor had done a good job and was the only one who stood a decent chance of winning, so why change?

Anonymous said...

I recall that Rav Yosef Kafah had peyoth before he arrived in Palestine/Israel,I believe the pictures are in his Sefer Hazikoran that I don't have in front of me

Milhouse said...

Yankel, just because someone is a MK, he should not try to run for a better position? Should McCain and Obama not have run for president because they were already senators? Porush wanted to be mayor. The agreement between Agudah and Degel that allowed Lupo to run the first time specified that next time it would be Agudah's turn; that was the basis on which the Agudah supported Lupo, and it would have been dishonest for Lupo to renege on the agreement and run again. The polls can never be relied on; you never really know how a candidate will do until the day. And on the day what torpedoed Porush's candidacy was Ger. He got into a fight with Ger over the money from chinuch atzmoi, and they decided to teach him a lesson, by engaging in blatant and shameless anti-charedi propaganda to drive the chilonim to the polls.

Anonymous said...

Ger has a old family feud with the Porushes for decades, I remember that they beat up Menachem the father after the Beis Yisrol Petira

Anonymous said...

satmar is more supportive of yemenites retaining their culture than lubavich would have been, you can be sure of that. other than polygamy satmar never try to convince anyone to do anything, it's natural acculturation. on the other hand, chabad would have them singing yechi adoneinu.

Marton said...

My father R' Yosef Marton composed the Ufaratzta Niggun based on a old beaitiful Chabad Niggun that is called "the Dubravner niggun". It was a forgotten lubavitcher niggun that came "back to life" as the Ufaratzta, with my father's help. The Rebbe accepted it and turned it into a non official anthem of the Chabad Lubavitch mouvment.