Tuesday, June 23, 2009

מדינה שאני

Hungarian soldiers milling about the Cheder in Seredne, Hungary, 1939

HebrewBooks has so many treasures it could make a grown man cry. The latest one comes to us from a very active and devoted reader. There's a book that speaks of the activities of the Agudath Israel in Romania after WWII, and there was much to write about. Communities were destroyed. Young adults came back to their towns only to find that there was nothing to come back to. Many - even if totally Chassidish before the war - were now drawn to the ideals of the idea, since it seemed like the only way out. I recall seeing a short video clip of an interview with an elderly Jew In Israel, where he speaks of his and his parents' deportation to Auschwitz in the summer of '44. This man is no longer religious, unfortunately, but his parents were Chassidishe Yidden, their pictures are flashed on the screen. He mentions that his father was so religious, that he was even worried that the transport from Romania to Auschwitz would arrive on Shabbos, which may lead to chilul shabbos..... The man then finishes off by saying זה שהוא נשרף בשבת זה כבר משהו אחר...... The irony is simply painful to watch. With someone like him it's easy to see how many said "G-d died in Auschwitz, c"v." This is what they tried to avoid when they organized after the war and tried to provide for the survivors.

From the sefer אגודת ישראל ברומני-ה - דין וחשבון

Which brings us to the letter here. We all know the Sighet-Satmar approach to the Agudah, Mizrachi and its satellites. This is not something that started only in post-war Palestine or in post-State Israel, it was the opinion of the Teitelbaums that they're both treif. Always were and Always will be. Not so much because of their approach to the Jewish question, (for lack of a better term) as much as not believing in what they were doing, mixing Rabbonim and Askonim and other such issues. They were not Reb Elchonon HYD, who had he survived would've most likely left the Agudah or Rav Dushinsky, who was a Agudist but anti-State, and passed away before the State came into being. You might say that in this in this sense the SR and probably his older brother the AC were like the Munkacser Rov, anti-Agudah in all aspects, and anti-anything the Agudah does, did, or will ever do. Daf Yomi is treif, Hachsharah for Kibbutzim are chazzer treyf, as is the word ALIYAH. You would think that since everything they did was treif that any cooperation would be as well. Surely a letter of admiration would be totally off limits too. Yeah, I know, Lubavitch was anti-Agudah too, but we're speaking about Sighet-Satmar now.

Yidden in Rumania, 1938

So the Agudah sends the Sigheter Rov a letter asking him to write a few words about the activities of the Agudah in Rumania, and he cannot stop praising them! He waxes poetic about how they saved lives. How these daughters of Israel had parents who were moser nefesh for yiddishkeit returned alone and broken in spirit and were saved only by the work of the "Kibutzim" that the Agudah in Transylvania operated. This is news! News that needs to trumpeted from the tops of tall buildings. You can appreciate what an organization does even if you disagree with what they're doing.... (huh?) I mean with OTHER things that they're doing, or with opinions they have about other activities. Yes, we can sit here and be amused at the fact that the man who would be Satmar Rebbe and Nosi of the Edah HaCharedis would be so open towards towards dialogue with the Agudah, but I see the good in it. I guess it's not for nothing that the more zealous ones didn't want to accept him when his uncle the DY passed away. They must've known about the letter. It wasn't the shidduch with the Vizhnitzer Agudist, it was the letter after WW2 that may have done him in as far they were concerned. ומסיימים בטוב.


Anonymous said...

Regarding Rav Duscinsky views, we will never know, he was constantly under pressure from the Kanoim vs. his closest right hand Rav Moshe Blau as u can see in his eulogy on rav blau as he is maspid a godol hador.

Nutteh said...

"Yeah, I know, Lubavitch was anti-Agudah too, but we're speaking about Sighet-Satmar now."

What were you trying to "bavorn" by putting this comment in?

Burech said...

The letter is interesting.
To me this post shows a bit more however, about the bloggers psyche.How? Well, the blogger knows full well (or should know)that the few remaining Jews saved from the Nazis ym'sh, were in dire straights spiritually, especially the younger ones and specifically women who were easily taken advantage of.Agudah did an amazing job of saving these souls.Why is it so amazing that the Sigiter who knew first hand how terrible it was out there would appreciate it?After all the ideological disagreements with Agudah where fine and radicalized to bring out points when "velt iz gevein velt" not in such terrible times.
The terutz is very simple
The "surprise" that the Tzig shows is because the new group he joined, holds grudges "leolmei ad", they fight dirty to win and winner takes all.It does not matter when or what.Once "treif", "iz ess treif auf aybeeg".One silly slight is documented in their elephants memory of perceived and maybe real "avlus".
There is no way, shape or form that leaders of the Tzigs group would ever write a letter (or try and right an old fight) praising their enemies
Small example:After so much water has passed under the Williamsburg Bridge, Lubavitch inc. is still "banning" the Hechsher of the CRC because of a fight that happened more than 30 years ago!

I don't need to point out how many historical fights that Satmar has patched up AND LIVE IN PEACE WITH TODAY, do I?

moshe shmeel said...

kudos great shtickel
by the way the great satmar rav also praises the joint in his michtovim (and the joint is not a satmar oriented org.)He also shtitst chinuch atzmui when needed...

burech said...

I see you did not post my comment.
Must've touched a nerve?Comments which are true have a tendency to do that

burech said...

Pravda blog all over again?
I though we got through this before.Comments without name calling and with basic civility are published.Or so you say?
Guess it's that "hiskashres" you got today because of giummel tammuz, eh?

burech said...

I apologize, seeing you did post the comment at last,my bad.Thought you were playing those games again.

Minkatcher Aynikle said...

Someone who understands the Hungarian mindset knows that there is a big gap between the harsh rhetoric meant to steer people in the right direction and the lemaysah of dealing with people with different views. The problems start when the rabble rousing kleine kep read the fire and brimstone in print and don't understand the true intentions behind it.
That being said, this letter is still an eye-opener.

Anonymous said...

great post

Anonymous said...

You are right with your view that after the war a person with a half a Jewish heart who realized that Hitler took us all in the same oven it is time to bury all old hatreds,
So this leads us to the big question why did his uncle go on a refresh and printed his magnum opus full of hatred that we can not get rid off? he made hatred in to a part of the religion that you can not rid off, since it is thought in the school systems. The Reshab wrote his anti Zionist letters but it wasn't part of the curriculum. After the war his son the next rebbe made a 360 on all this ideology and saved yahadus in every shape and form.

Anonymous said...

I'm a bit surprised that Tzig confuses Satmar with Munkatch.

He writes: might say that in this in this sense the SR and probably his older brother the AC were like the Munkacser Rov, anti-Agudah in all aspects, and anti-anything the Agudah does, did, or will ever do.

Satmar Rav never said "ONE" word in public or wrote one word against Daf Hayomi. Satmar Rav was diligent not to confuse and conflate the Agudah (who he never ever attacked) in the US, with the Agudah in Israel who he accused of Zionism and for being aiders and abettors for the State.

SR was very unhappy with the approach of MR to entire issue of Zionism. He even privately poked fun at MR antics. One should never confuse what Satmar chasidim do with what SR specifically said and wrote, especially about the Agudah. Yes had severe criticism on the Agudah actions in Israel, but he never said boo about AI in America or elsewhere.

As for RMT not only did he join the Agudah in Romania after the war even in the US he came to meetings and I think he even attended on convention or dinner. Until his uncle came to America. (This I heard but I never verified)

Now for a few secrets פון חדר

Reb Yoel who acted as the surrogate father for RMT had a fight with Reb Shulem Eliezer (who was the Zeide of RMT), on his first Shidduch.

Reb SEH wanted him for his granddaughter (I won't say now whom) but Satmar Rav wanted to be meshadech with his Shvuger Reb Henach Maiyer the Sasover, who's daughter he eventually married, had children and lost them in the holocaust.

Reb Henach's wife was SRs sister. He himself was a great gaon, but an agudah (or more left) sympathizer. His son Reb Yoel was the Kirlihazer Rav in Boro Park. There is a Sefer Yad Chanoch where one can see what a great gaon he was. The קדושת יום טוב
loved his eidem.

When SR objected to the Viznitz Shidduch for Reb Aaron, RMT bitterly complained why is this any different than what you did with me.

So to argue that being from the Teitelbaum family automatically makes you anti agudah is just not correct history. Suffice it to say the Munckatcher was angry at SR for not joining in fighting the Agudah as strongly as against Zoinism.

There is a lot more to say about RSLH reaction to the Shidduch of RMT but its a bit off topic

ועוד חזון למועד

yosef 718

Anonymous said...

From MAtzav:

burech said...

Anon 4:41,
As Minkatcher Eynikel already wrote, you have to understand the mindset of The Kanoim, mostly based around Hungarian and Romanian groups.
The "shita hakedoisha" is a polemic, written in a radical style to warn the oylem of the "dangers" of Zionism.Nobody, for example takes at face value a saying in the name of the Satmer Ruv that "redden ivrit iz harber vi booken tzi avoideh zureh {hinderd} mool).So....after the War was over and Jews had regathered we went back to our polemics, not to be taken at literal face value.
Btw, most Lubab continue to claim (quite laughably imho..)that the Rebbe WAS MORE ANTI-zIONIST THAN sATMAR.
I don't get why Lubab can't accept that the Rebbe d-i-s-a-g-r-e-e-d with his grandfather-in-law?
The Rebbe caould be moshiach in their eyes, a novi etc, but has to accept his schverr or granfathers opinion? I think with respect to them he did not say he disagrees, but the reality is that the Rebbe was one of the biggest supporters of a an autonomous Jewish State, very much for being part of such a state, as a citizen.He was also very much for a strong Jewish military and considerd himself an expert in military matters.
This is the "definition" of a Zionist.Of course you can call it different names, try and claim all kinds of fantasies, but the reality is clear that this is what people would define as a Zionist.
My problem is not with his view, my problem is with Lubab attempting to cover up the obvious

Anonymous said...

You are lying when you say that being for a safe Israel and claiming a halacha in Hilchos Shabos with the belief rhat Mitzvas Yishuv
eretz is only a Derobonan,is considered a Zionist. Chabad was definitely against the creation of the country. Every human being is for a safe neighborhood, having a powerful army with good bufferzones has nothing with the original Rayon Hatzioni. You know it,but unfortunately you will not miss a opportunity to bash,

Anonymous said...

Burech/ Munkatcher
You people have no idea the Willi mentality how deep rooted the sinas yisroel. Its not the sarcasm that you find in the Hungarian Jew of Nirbater/Sigeter/Munkatcher shul in Boro Park, its real Jihad. I just saw this week a old Satmarer that was a aide by the Veyoel Moshe by the name Gancz, published a kuntres against the other Aharoni faction decrying the Machlokes and Sinas chinum between the factions, he saw the trains going to the ghetto, its all the fault of Machlokes,at the same token he is disparaging the Yeridus Hadoras of Satmar that they are befriending Klausenburg Etc.. as if they are talking to some jews for J, this guy is a normal baal batish guy but drank that evil Kool Aid as most of them

Anonymous said...

"I don't get why Lubab can't accept that the Rebbe d-i-s-a-g-r-e-e-d with his grandfather-in-law?

Did the Satmar Rov holler from every roof top that he is for a school system for girls? even tough it was Chodosh Ossur Min Hatorah,and the Kedishas Yom Tov and the yetev Lev would definily reject the idea in their era, Vozhe Den, he felt its time to change and go on with life, and so did other Gedolim understand on other issues without the super wide brim beaver hat

Anonymous said...

"the new group he joined, holds grudges "leolmei ad"
Didn't the Rebbe quote Biurei Hagra in his hagoas?Were not the Rebeim friendly with any misnagsdisher rov or rosh yeshiva that was ready to work on the subjects they were involved? Reb Chaim Ozer,Reb Chaim, but they were not ready to dilute their Toras Chaim to fit in.

Anonymous said...

"Pravda blog all over again?"
the communist paper was ill famed for its lies, I don't see how this document is a lie

burech said...

"Pravda blog all over again?"

I was referring to The Tzigs penchant for not posting or censoring comments that don't show Lubavitch in a positive light.

Eventually,I guess he realized that people visiting this blog probably want to see another opinion different than the classic Lubab p.r bs.If everyone wants the party line they can go to their local farby and kai ibber all the old ,boring kool-aid gebbebteh mayses and toast to it too!

Interesting to note that Chabad-On-Line the "official" unofficial Lubavitch site will go where the Tzig will not dare, raising and discussing many of the internal Lubab squabbles and even publishing the teshuva from R'Menashe Klein against the Meshichisten.We had to pull teeth to get him to post it (I guess he got the go ahead eventually from the powers that be (or bs) ).
Shturem.net btw is more to the Tzigs liking, quite partisan etc..

Anonymous said...

Don't get it. Isn't it possible to still be ant-daf yomey and still be pro Rambam Yomi?

evanstonjew said...

I found the letter very moving. The background theme of the letter is the OVERWHELMING human tragedy of these orphan girls returning home after the war. I for one want to thank Tzig for bringing this document to our attention.

As for the rest of the lashon harah and back and forth...you know people become so super-sophisticated they become blind to what is really important.

Anonymous said...

The sigheter rebbe after ww2 was asked by Mike Tress to come to a Agudah Convention.He went out of gratiude to Mike Tress.when he got back his uncle HagaonR Yoel called him in and told him hakoras hatov is one thing but to go to the convention

josh said...

If I may ask, From which sefer is this letter taken ?

Modeh B'Miktsas said...

Burech, get your head out of wherever you keep it when you comment. You say two things:
1)that chabad online goes farther than tzig dares and posts Rav Menashe Klein's tshuva
2) that Tzig censors any non pro-Lubavitch comments.
when you have both (a) commented on his post of the tshuva and (b) commented very nastily.

Satmerer said...

The handwritten manuscript of this letter, was on the antiques market several years ago.

It was bought by R' Eliezer Kestenbaum.

I heard this at the time from one of the dealers that handled it.

Anonymous said...

איי הירשעלע, איר האט דאך פארזעהן דאס צווייטע האלב פון די מעשה, דאס וואלט דאך אייך געווען ווי געווינטשען צו מאכען דערפון צימעס.

די ארויסגעבער פון 'ומשה הי' רועה' וועלכע ביישרייבט דאס לעבן און שאפן פון ר' משה'לי דער סיגוט-סאטמאר רבי, האבן געדרוקט דעם דערמאנטען בריוו אינעם דריטען טהייל, אבער צוליב חשש פון די עקסטרעמע האבן זיי צענזורירט דעם בריוו און ארונטערגענומען די ערשטע פאראגראף וועלכע צייגט אז דאס אדערסירט די פעולות פון די אגודה.

קליינע קעפפער

Neil Harris said...

I found this post very interesting, as my mother-in-law a"h was from Romania.

Anonymous said...

It is printed in the pamphlet of Agudas Yisroel of Romania 1946

Anonymous said...

Yosef 718
Their is no difference between the Munkatchers view and the Satmar rovs view regarding the Agudah, the only difference who was able to use their charisma as a facade, Thev munkatcher was no politican what so ever, he called a spade a spade, he wasnt talking in his room different then by the tish.He was emes to the core.

Anonymous said...

"Milsi Davidai Ligluai Loi Mshaker Inshi" Hirshel blogged on many inner chabad but for chabad bashers like you, its aint enough you need more often.

Anonymous said...

Yosef 718
I dont beleve all this versions of the SR mingling in the nephews shiduch. The immediate family has all kind of rumors,Its interesting to note that SR cosidered himself a talmud of the Ayin Chanoch since he learned alot with him in his young age, that was probably his only Rebbe,
Between Reb Shulem Eliezer and the Sr was a old rift regarding the son Reb Chamel the rosh beis din in Satmer, I think he wanted the rabonas, there was alot of bad blood between them,The grandchildren the Katzes will never talk since hey are all on the Satmar payroll.

Anonymous said...

I just saw his biography Umoshe Uyo Roya, vol 4. It seems they are out to compete with his uncle to get out more and more volumes of lies. Truth said there is not much to be said on this whole personality,a small pamphlet would describe him well. But in this era of the fight between the 2 brothers turf war, the older brother chasidim have a agenda to repackage him as a Manhig Yisroal. Whats amusing that they are working hard to build his image that he was a Lochem Milchamois Hashem which he was definitly not, he had no fire in his belly.