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Thursday, August 02, 2007

UOJ---What should I have done?

Dear UOJ,

Erev Shabbos Nachamu, after several shaggy weeks, I eagerly stepped into the small, crowed barber shop on New Utrecht Ave. in Boro Park . I took my place among the people waiting, some chatting on their cell phones or tapping on their blackberrys, others, reading a magazine or just staring straight ahead as if watching paint dry. Within a minute or two, a short, heavy, unusually dark-skinned chasid in his upper 40s walked in and looked around. I watched him head toward an empty chair at the end of the row, where he sat at down next to the tall, lanky, dark haired “modern chasid” in his 20s. I suddenly froze. The man who just walked in was the same animal who tried to molest me in the bathroom of a Brooklyn yeshiva more than a decade ago.

I was a tall, skinny fourteen-year-old at the time and attended a well-known, and rather large Brooklyn yeshiva. It was a litvishe yeshiva and the foremost of its kind. A typical day in yeshiva often ended at 10pm after a night of mishmar and basketball.

I remember once stopping off at the pay phone at the end of the hall next to the beis medrash to call a friend before heading home for the night. After around ten minutes of talking I was interrupted by a man who asked me where the bathroom was. (Years ago, our yeshiva doors were always unlocked and sometimes, members of the community would walk in to use the beis medrash if the larger one down the block was too crowded. It wasn’t entirely uncommon then, to see complete strangers stroll in and out of our mesivta building. Although when I was in eleventh grade the hanhala started keeping the doors locked at night and the entire student body was provided with a key.)

I pointed the man down the hall and continued chatting with my friend for another ten or fifteen minutes. When I was done, I headed to the bathroom which was adjacent to the stairs leading to the street. I was at the urinal when the door opened and guess who walked in? The short, fat, dark-haired chasid who asked me where the bathroom was at least ten minutes earlier. I thought it was strange that it took him so long to find the bathroom when it wasn’t more than thirty feet away. Where was he during the rest of my phone conversation? The halls were empty and I would have passed him on the way. In retrospect, the only place he could have been was either in the bais medrash, or, standing in the nook where the candy and soda machines were situated. There was a hidden spot next the machines where I often ducked in order to avoid being seen by the menahel, roaming the hallways during class. That candy machine area was right across from the bathroom.

I was hesitant to “go” because of the stranger who took the spot just near the one right next to me. The unspoken bathroom rule in yeshiva was to use the one furthest from anyone already there. I glanced at him with caution and he smiled and I noticed his piercing blue eyes that seemed to look straight through me. He began to talk to me and ask me questions about the yeshiva, like who my rebbi was, how big was the school, did I like my rebbi? I tried to answer with quick “yes and no” answers but them he grew strangely persistent. He stepped back a few feet from the urinal and I noticed he was exposed and was furiously playing with himself. I immediately froze and barely understood what was happening. It seemed as if I were standing there for hours. Without washing my hands, I backed away and reached for the door, as he was headed toward me He seemed upset and told me to stay because he was enjoying the conversation. I was praying for someone else to join us so this would end. It was too late, and I was probably one of the only ones remaining in the building. I said I had to go and I grabbed the door handle and bolted out. I was scared to leave because it was pretty late and dark and who knows? He might follow me. Although I did not look back I imagined that the man must be pursuing me. Instead of leaving the building, I ran upstairs as fast as my quivering legs could take me. He could not know the building as I did. I ran toward the gym on the third floor after I heard the thumping of basketballs, reverberating in the stairwell. Breathless, I headed inside the gym where I saw a classmate of mine along with someone from another grade playing a one-on-one. I remember I was shaking and I did not want to arouse attention so I sat down on a locker-room bench. The next thing I remember, it was nearly midnight and I carefully tiptoed down the stairs and ran home as fast as my legs could carry me.

Back to the barbershop nearly fifteen years later and there is the man, sitting next to the guy in his 20s, having an animated conversation. My thoughts were racing and I noticed the man staring at me a few times. I could never forget those cold blue eyes. I noticed him stare intently at the young guy’s face while speaking to him. It seemed as if he was attempting to make some sort of continual eye contact, ignoring the understood social “rule” of intermittently looking away from your conversation-partner for a brief moment.

I watched as every so often he would deliberately gently tap the young guy’s arm as if it were a subconscious communication component. I had an urge to get up and confront the guy but I didn’t want to look silly. Me, a “modern” young man, “accosting” a middle-age heimishe yid, in Boro Park , would land me on the wrong side of judgment. I thought maybe the young guy, being a somewhat more open-minded, modern chasidishe type would probably have zero tolerance for a complete stranger accused of being a pervert, and would probably identify with me more so than with this fat animal, but still I remained seated.

I waited for a specific barber and soon the fat animal took his place next to mine for a five-minute haircut. He carefully held on to his payos as the Russian barber, with his hair clipper set at “zero” finished the job. When he was done, the young guy said a quick goodbye to him and ascended the chair just occupied by the fat pervert. After the fat pervert paid for his haircut, he returned to the chair and gently placed his hand on the young person’s arm and stared at him for several seconds, saying “goodbye…nice to meet you….” The young guy seemed to have been oblivious that the pervert was being very touchy. I could not believe it as I watched the pervert then make a move to leave the barbershop, when he quickly turned around for another goodbye, smile, and pat on the arm. As I watched the scene play out in the mirror in front of me, this time I sensed just a bit of annoyance on the part of the “prey.”

After the pervert left, I almost started a conversation with the young guy, intending to tell him the story and to warn him to be careful if he ever meets the guy again. I refrained from doing so. I was too enraged and a little shaken up. Besides, the barbershop was crowded by now and I could not face the prospect of someone overhearing me and doubting my veracity.

UOJ--What should I have done?

52 comments:

Anonymous said...

What you should have done was to have discretely followed this guy to his home, workplace, or car; obtain as much information about him as possible; and, then make the appropriate warnings to the police and other responsible people. In the best case scenario, you would flush out him and his victims, he would be successfully prosecuted, incarcerated, and then permanently placed on government sex offender registries. He would then be very unlikely to get any job working near children; or even living in a neighborhood close to a school, or other setting where children congregate.

It might actually not be too difficult for the police to get this guy. He's an exhibitionist, who likes to expose himself in public places. That's a common problem for libraries, department stores, highway rest stops, etc. If you had alerted the police about this guy, you could have suggested that they follow him, and as a result, they might catch him in the act.

You can still do something about this problem, and I would suggest you're obligated to do so. You're in your mid to late 20s, and you have the energy and smarts to help your community. Your essay is very well thought out and well written. Go to the police, and tell them what happened. Be forthright, and exchange ideas with them, for getting this guy.

Go back to the barber shop. Engage the barbers in conversation, be forthright, and explain the problem to them also. A man like this who keeps touching complete strangers will raise antennas. They might know something about him.

If you live or work in the same neighborhood as that local barber shop, carry a cell phone camera with you. Maybe you'll again see him on the street, and you can snap a photo. That would be a great help.

None of this is optional. Judiasm is all encompassing. Lo sa'amod al dam ra'echa is mandatory - do not stand upon the blood of your brother. You are in possession of unique information, and you have the power to act upon it. Be a man, step up to the plate, and swing the bat. Don't listen to the cynics and naysayers. Make this your project, and G-d will help.

One more thing. Don't enlist the help of any rabbis in your cause. They're either nearly useless, or they will squeal to this predator, who will lay low for a while, and avoid arrest and prosecution.

renreb said...

From the Renegade Rebbitzen:
But here's the part I don't understand even more than I don't understand pedaphilia.

I don't understand Lipa Margulies and his ilk. Here we have someone who it's impossible to feel sorry for. A person who, apparently, is a through-and-through evil bastard piece of s.

I will never understand evil bastard pieces of s., never understand people who threaten and intimidate and who seem to get off on people's fear and victimization. He's evil, he's a criminal, and he belongs in prison as much, if not more so, than Kolko. Him, I want to kill. Him, I will not mourn. And I would call upon every member of the Jewish nation to join me in spitting on his grave.

But here's the part that I understand the absolute, positive, least of all. And I hereby give everyone fair warning that I'm about to embark upon a screaming rampage, so if you don't want to read one, go away.

*deep breath*

*pause*

I don't understand us. I don't understand myself. I don't understand apathy, and complacency, and cowardice. I don't understand the Jewish people.

I don't understand how this was allowed to continue.

I don't understand how regular people in the community allowed this to continue.

I don't understand how so-called "leaders" of the Jewish community allowed this to continue.

l.a. Jew said...

Both Tendler cases are tragedies of injustice within the Los Angeles Jewish community as well.

Two rabbis have had severe allegations against them, and no communal servant, newspapers, rabbinic organizations, synagogues or individual leaders did a God damn thing about it since 1987.

This is no different than the Kolko case.

"You are either with The Un-Orthodox Jew - "UOJ"- or against him!"....... said...

Anything related to sexual issues will never be addressed or receive the attention it needs from the Jewish leadership. Why? Why is this different than any other illness, physical, mental or emotional? It's worse; it affects the health of others and is a menace.

The above writer is correct, do whatever you are able to do to make people aware of this very disturbed individual. You can not rely on our ignorant rabbis for anything other than taking your money or using you for their perceived needs.

Torah Umesorah said...

Hal Fishman, the award-winning KTLA-TV Channel 5 news anchor who was a Los Angeles broadcasting fixture for nearly 50 years, turned senile Tuesday, the station announced. He was 75.

Fishman went senile at 3 a.m. at his Brentwood home with his family at his side. His cousin Shea thinks this is his cousin.

Barbara said...

I have to agree with the first commentor. But since you didn't, its time to approach police or someplace like The Awareness Center and turn this guy in.

3 years ago I was deeply traumatized by a sexual predator who I thought was a friend. I ended up working with police about something related and in the hospital. I was going to trauma counseling 3x a week for a while, now I go less. I am on less medication too. But I know I did the right thing. For myself and my family as well as the PERPETRATOR'S family and himself.

The perp was never brought to justice but it's hopeful he's been scared straight and is now accountable to his family. He's smeared me, defamed me and so on. But if I truly did care about him and his soul - I needed to tell, not participate in continuing to keep secrets. And secrets are toxic.

Have you ever heard of serial killer, Gary Ridgeway from Seattle? He wanted to kill his second wife, Marcia, and didn't for only one reason. During an argument, Gary had violently grabbed and choked her from behind. She was not a co-dependent or caught in the cycle of abuse because she did not keep his secret! Marcia told her dad, mom and friends that her husband had tried to kill her. Guess what? Years later when caught by the police, he told them that he indeed wanted to kill Marcia. There was only one reason he did not stage her death, he explained. Because she told so many people, he deduced they would suspect him and he might get caught. Wow. Telling the "secret" saved Marcia's life.

One more note:
“Let us remember: what hurts the victim most is not the cruelty of the oppressor, but the silence of the bystander.”—Elie Wiesel

No matter what people use to try to shut you up, shame, guilt - accusations of Loshan Hara - don't do it. Tell for your sake, the sake of his future victims and this predator's own soul.

Anonymous said...

any newz on mondrowitz yimach shimo?

Anonymous said...

There was a creep fitting this description who was hanging around Derech Chaim at 16th Ave & 39th almost 20 years ago. An unusually dark skinned chossid, possibly with blue eyes - whatever color they were, they were very creepy and eerie. He would linger around the dorm upstairs, which no other outsider had the gall to do. He once stopped me when I was alone and asked if the yeshiva would mind if he showered there. I told him he had to ask the rosh yeshiva for reshus. Because the guy and the request were equally creepy, I glared at him with the intention of intimidating him into exiting the dorm. It seemed to have worked.

Over the course of the next 10 years, I would see the creep dreying zich on 13th Ave. I would give him the glaring looks again. He would look back with double and triple takes. He knew I was on to him and figured out he was up to no good. Somehow, although I was just a kid in my teens and twenties, I was able to intimidate him and he found my glares very unsettling.

Anonymous said...

"Both Tendler cases are tragedies of injustice ... Two rabbis have had severe allegations against them"

Who and what?

"You are either with The Un-Orthodox Jew - "UOJ"- or against him!"....... said...

The wheels of justice grind ever slowly, but are grinding.

I don't believe in grandstanding; I intend to keep everyone guessing; when there's news you will see it here. I can assure the readership that I don't rest for a moment.. I am driven to rid us from the criminal element in our organizations and yeshivas.

Lamdan said...

It might be kedye to look into the yichus of molesters. While we know that many of them are meyuchosim, someone with a psul yichus is more prone to deviant behavior.

It wouldn't surprise me if that very dark skinned chussid is the product of a less than desirable union. I have seen that weirdo around Boro Park. He always has a suspicious air about him and his complexion makes him stick out like a sore thumb. He always looks like he's just lingering, doing nothing except look for trouble. There have been incidents that were hushed up of chassidish women being raped by Blacks and Hispanics. According to some Rishonim, the kid that comes from that is a mamzer and lechol hadayos it is a psul yichus.

42 Broadway said...

"when there's news you will see it here"

Why do you think we follow this blog religiously?

We have to know our enemy's next move!

Rav Mendlowitz has a Guest Post on Yudelstake said...

http://yudelstake.blogspot.com/2006/11/reb-shraga-feivel-mendelowitz-zl.html

Like the Gemora Yevomos says, sifsei tzadikkim are dovevos, even from the kever.

At the Back of the Hill Blog said...

http://atthebackofthehill.blogspot.com/2006/05/kolko-margulies.html

Lipa Margulies is an enabler and an accessory.

But we cannot state that they are guilty until they have been tried - as Dayan Roy Bean would say, 'give 'em a fair trial and hang 'em'.

The other aspect is that a beis din which did not bring this to the attention of the authorities bears legal responsibility - whoever was part of that panel can and will be seen as aiding and abetting the rape of minors that happened since they were first made aware of the matter.

This is not an issue of a chillul Hashem - it is an issue of chillul Hashem squared.

There are just too many different horrors all on one page.

How could any of the people involved in not bringing this to the attention of authorities possibly consider themselves good Jews?

If there was any chance that this was going on (and as it turns out there was abundant chance for this to go on), how could they not see that doing nothing to stop it would reflect badly on them, their value system, their institutions, their community, their own legal standing, and their faith?

How could they not consider the immense damage to the boys entrusted to Kolko and Margulies? How could they disregard their own responsibility to their community, to the parents of these students, and to the boys themselves? Why would they even take the chance that their inaction would cause further suffering?

What the she'ol were they thinking?!?!

And these were not ignorant halfwits. There is no excuse.

Moishe Rubashkin said...

Ummmm, Yummy !

http://failedmessiah.typepad.com/failed_messiahcom/2007/08/mad-cow-safety-.html

August 09, 2007
Mad Cow Safety Concerns, Repeated Fecal & Bile Contamination Alleged at Agriprocessors, America's Largest Glatt Kosher Slaughterhouse
USDA documents to be released later today by the United Food and Commercial Workers Union are said to show a pattern of food safety issues including recalled products, mad-cow-related safety concerns and repeated fecal and bile contamination at the plant that produces Aaron's Best, Aaron's Choice, European Glatt, Iowa Best Beef, Nevel, Shor Harbor, Rubashkin's, Supreme Kosher, and David's.

That's right, folks. Rubashkin and Agriprocessors – owned by Chabad followers and the county's largest producer of glatt kosher meat – are back in the news again.

Rabbi Effy Wachsmann said...

"Gemora Yevomos says, sifsei tzadikkim are dovevos, even from the kever."

But you can't listen to what they are saying unless the Agudah says you can.

Ephraim Shapiro said...

What about etzbos molesters? Do they molest even from the kever?

Anonymous said...

Nebach, another Jew getting screwed because he feels you can't protect yourself. The laws of mesirah are in place to protect the criminals:

Dear Editor, I don’t know where to begin. I am putting my pen to paper in the hope of helping people who might be in a similar situation, or considering putting themselves into one.

August 2000. I went to the Catskills. I meet a very nice yungerman in my colony, that, from what I was told by a mutual friend, is doing “very well” in real estate. We schmooze a little, he takes my number.

Several weeks later, I get a call from this yungerman, who is a big “Baal Tzedakah”. “A deal just became available, a four family house in crown heights. “The building is Brick! The rent is federal-government direct-deposit paid-like-clockwork-on-the first-of-the-month section 8 tenants, and in perfect condition!”

Do I know anything about real estate? No. I’m a (self described) Feina Yungerman, having just left kollel to take my first job in the working world. I don’t want to be one of the mootchers of the government, on the dole getting section 8, Medicaid, or food stamps. I want to be a self sufficient yungerman, able to provide for my small-but-growing family, paying taxes and getting paid on the books.

So… here is my chance. Turns out that A deal came up, and since he doesn’t buy small deals anymore like this one, he is willing to “flip it” to me for a pittance above what he is paying. I meet the “flipper” at the property, look around… and the property looks, takeh, pretty nice. The block wasn’t a block that I would want to get a flat tire on, but nu, its not Boro Park… and my checks will be coming by mail, and I will be using a management company anyway… nu, so what’s not to like?

I ask around, and get the name of a good attorney. Check his references doing some homework of my own, and am told that he is a good attorney.

And… I am asked for a deposit of $20,000, which I can B”H come up with. I am explained that since the value of the house is much more then I am paying (don’t forget, it’s a steal of a deal that I am getting), the bank will give me a very high mortgage as a “seller’s consession”. “It’s all legit”, I am assured. Well- I’m not so sure… but since I have my well-regarded attorney, I wont’ worry about that- I’m sure the lawyer will keep me and my metziah of a deal 1000% legal and kosher. and I’ll be getting back the downpayment plus, at closing.

I go to the lawyer to discuss the contract. The lawyer assures me its airtight and not to worry.. The lawyer prints out a sheet of paper, which he attaches to the contract, which says “The Seller agrees to give the buyer a stipend of $70,000 at the closing, due to the condition of the property and the buyer accepting the property as-is”.

Ok. So with my wife proudly looking on, her gaonish’a husband, scribbles his name on the paper and on all the other papers which have “SIGN HERE” post-it stickies attached to them, and we are on our way.

Three weeks later, the closing is set up for the following afternoon. The seller has hooked me up with an amazing insurance broker, who got me insurance and an appraiser, who got me an appraisal… and the appraisal came in EVEN HIGHER then anticipated… since the market had gone UP in the time since the deal had been offered to me up until now!

I left the closing an hour later with $40,000 in my pocket. Not payable to me, of course, but as it was explained to me at the closing, that the checks couldn’t be made out to me since the bank didn’t really want to see it on the HUD… nodding to whatever the attorneys and seller said, since they were all in pleasant agreement, and after tipping the title person for all the work a few hundred dollars (yes, its customary, explained my attorney, who decided that $350 was a decent tip for all the work with the extra checks being disbursed and *wink* knowing when to leave the room and all…) huh? He also charges $2000 for himself.

Yes. I was now a Yungerman, but nisht stam a yungerman, but one with $40,000 in his pocket.. Would we splurge this money and spend it foolishly? No way! We immediately paid off our several thousand dollars of debt we had on our credit cards, as well as on top doctors for a medical condition (we aren’t going to ask our parents to help when we can pay for it… right?) And giving some tzeddakah to thank Hashem for his Chessed in giving us this gift… we had the management company managing the building, and things were blissful.

You said someone…A WHAT? What in the world is that? Squatter? You mean a chazakah, like the Gemora says? Some guy broke into the house and now the police won’t kick him out? Yep. You heard me right. Some teenage, funny-smelling-cigarette-smoking teenager noticed that there was an empty apartment in the building… (Oh, I must have not mentioned that by the time we closed three apartments were empty… giving me the opportunity to collect higher rents and big BONU$ES from the city worth $5,000 each!! Chasdei Hashem!)…

Anyway, so this teenager called Verizon, and had them come install a phone line in the building. So, you see, he explains to the police, I’m here and I have squatter’s rights. So you can’t kick me out, I have established residency. So please tell the landlord that I am here until he gets me evicted- and he had better provide heat for my apartment because brrrr… its been cold here the last few days. (Since the previous owner –oops. No it was a flip- so two owners ago had the utilities cut off for nonpayment for a week or so before they sold, and my management company had been slow in getting it turned on, since Brooklyn Union Gas wanted a large deposit to open the account anew, since there was such a large balance on the old account.. (Yes, of course… the money for the deposit came from the money we received at closing… where else?)

Oh and yes… in the apartment above him, a fellow teenager, this one with dreads (doesn’t every bachur and yungerman living in the big apple know what dreads and Rastafarians are? And what the Jamaican flag colors are? I mean, I do… now!)has taken the above apartment… and is having parties there every night in his DIRA… I mean bochurim are bochurim… even if they are from Jamaica and not Jewish…. No? especially when they have huge bulldogs?? Ones that even the police don’t want to deal with?

So, my building is getting four, oops I mean, one fat rent check form the city on the first of every month. So to pay the mortgage of $2600 a month, I should be covering that with under two rents… one more rent to cover the other expenses like taxes and insurance… leaving me with one rent per month in pure PROFIT! (not to mention having a free and clear, no mortgage, house after 30 years!!) MAMISH GEONIUS!

So, my four rents I am supposedly getting (plus the one-time bonuses from the homeless shelter of $15,000 in total!! Which I will get every two years hopefully!!) is now only one, which doesn’t even cover the mortgage, forget the other expenses. But i’m getting waaay ahead of myself.

At the closing, I see when I walk in, a yungerman sitting in the lawyer’s office, with the seller who was selling me the building. Which was kind of interesting, since I was 15 minutes early for my closing (ver volt gevust that closings aren’t always on time?) and they seemed to be sitting there with a “bank”, “title closer”… and all…

Turns out that this was the “sale” in which my “seller” was the “buyer”. The lawyer assures me that this is normal- that’s what a flip is, he explains to me.

So, when I ask for the keys, it turns out that the keys I’m given don’t work… so they give me the number to “their seller” who promptly returns my call and arranges to meet me to give me the keys. When we meet, we schmooze a little, find some common relatives… were practically related! Anyway, he mentions to me that he sells properties for a living, and that I probably got a decent deal on the property, since he sold it to them for $300,000 and so I paid what, he asks? 320,000?

WHAT? I paid $480!! And the appraisal came in at $597,700!! The guy is shocked. “what chazeirim they are”, he exclaims. “they just cashed in an easy “large”! so.. he feels bad for me. And so, he tells me that I now have his number and he will give me properties without any middleman. For example, he has a twelve family house on a beautiful block. he mumbles something about a 7A (whatever that is)… but its no problem to get it off once a new owner takes title. of course- er zugt dem emes!

“but I don’t have money for a down payment, I tell him. No problem he says- they have banks that will treat the house like a four family, and get the loan done as a residential loan, for which I can get 100% financing- and maybe even pull out 10 or twenty grand on the side for a little fringe benefit- since they pay closing costs when they sell a property.

Isn’t life wonderful? Such seyata deshmaya! Over supper that night, I explain to my wife how lucky we are. “we will soon be able to own 16 units- and make 5,000 a month in profit! With that money we will be able to live very comfortable and support our family”

I have a yiddisher kop. “if I buy two or three houses a year besides what I have now.. since the management itself is being given out and I found a good source of properties for cheap… I can put away $100-200 thousand dollars in the next five years or so… and buy myself an apartment to live in myself- like a mentch! And pay my good insurance and bills out of my ehrlicher earnings, not mooch off the feds like many people we know!

My parents and in laws are proud of me. They are happy to see me succeed- especially since my older brother is working hard for many years trying to make ends meet, but cant seem to make a living at anything he does. I offer to mentor him in real estate… since by now I own “apartment buildings” and people call me for advice… ( by now I owned several properties across Brooklyn, the Bronx, and staten island)

My parents and in laws are all “old-school”, all holding down full time jobs working for “other people”. No self employed blood in my family, not since arrival on American sores for sure not. (I did once hear of a great-great-great grandfather that had a general store somewhere in Galicia- so I guess some entrepreneurship does exist in the last 200 years in my family.)

Oh. Lets fast forward to the present.

I thought I was invincible, and that Hashem would look out for me. I am considering declaring bankruptcy, and giving up my properties to the city before I get arrested for not providing heat as winter comes along, since foreclosures can take a year or more in new York.

All my wife’s savings from her single years, all our wedding savings, everything we own (including a refinance of my personal resident to borrow our way out of trouble…) its all gone. and I refuse to borrow from friends since i have no way to pay it back in the foreseeable future.

I still have my gold-and-diamond encrusted tie clip and cufflink set. My wife still has her engagement ring. There are the two things we refuse to sell- unless we need to the money to do a shidduch with one of our children, we will keep these and hold them.

Everything else is gone. I don’t want to fall behind in my payments. And I am still sleepless every night, which is why I am typing this at this hour, since I am scared Chas veshalom of the FBI or some other lovely federal agents coming to get me. And then I’d have the stigma of having been arrested on top of all the maror and chrain I have been eating recently, not to mention that fact that I would not want to be ovier on mesira of a fellow Jew, since the peer-pressure of doing so, even in a case where my Rov and Posek would allow it, would damn me for life.

So, all you people out there that have been involved in preying on innocent yungerleit over the last few years of the boom… think deep and hard about if you owe anyone an apology. If you perhaps might suffer gehonnim for the anguish you have caused many an innocent family, while you gave tzeddakah to the worthy causes and had your names on plaques galore.

I’m not placing the blame for my personal tragedy on other people,. And I can only image some people, some meaning well, some with “naaseh lo ke’heter” after being involved on some part of shady deals in some way… will comment on this negatively. I have not typed five hundred pages- just glossed over some of the highlights of some things that come to mind, as I sit here and try to put my thoughts together…

You people, the ones who perpetrate such acts knowingly, putting myself and many others like myself in harms way and into financial (and marital, in some cases) ruin… there are tens of yungerliet I personally know, if not hundreds or even a thousand plus, that are now being swallowed alive by the mortgage crises , while the fear of getting in trouble for illegality keeps us paying the mortgages so that we stay clear, since “as long as you pay they don’t investigate”.

May Hashem have mercy on you all.

I’m better off in a big way. I have learned some really good lessons about life, loyalty, how not to leyg a tzveiten in a pekkel, how to feel for someone less fortunate then myself, and all about the galgal hachozer. have become a much better person from my experiences, may I continue with Hashems help!

And to all of you contemplating life on easy street… doing fraud on mortgages, fake gemach verifications, getting added as a signer on a bank account, getting verified at a fake place of employment…. All this stuff can and WILL come back to haunt everyone involved. even your mother and grandmother, possibly.

And to the sellers, buyers, and “bank” attorneys, title companies, appraisers, insurance brokers, mortgage reps… YOU KNOW WHO YOU ARE. Stay straight. Yesh Din V’Yesh Dayin…

and remember: If something seems too good to be true….. IT IS.

A Fellow Jew.

Am Haaretz said...

The ultra-Orthodox arrived en masse

By Shlomo Shamir

Tens of thousands of Haredi (ultra-Orthodox) and Hasidic Jews defied their religious leaders' orders and thronged to a performance by ultra-Orthodox "rock stars" in Jerusalem's Teddy Stadium last week. However, their disobedience runs deeper than this and is more threatening than their rabbis and associates would like to admit.

The concert organizers, the two ultra-Orthodox singers and the crowd publicly trampled the Haredi community's tradition of following the rabbis' edicts to the letter. It does not follow, however, that the rabbis and their associates will hold an open debate on the mass disregard of the ban imposed on attending the concert.

The contempt toward the rabbis was a clear reflection of the privatization of Hasidic Judaism and rabbinic authority, a change that is gaining momentum in Israel and in Haredi and Hasidic communities in the United States.


The first signs of this process were seen after the death of rabbis who succeeded those who rehabilitated the Hasidic courts in Israel and the Diaspora. They were admired and thought to represent the original Hasidic movement in East Europe. To disobey them or passively ignore their instructions was unheard of and unforgiveable.

This said, the Hasidic court rabbis born in Israel and the U.S. lacked their fathers' natural, self-evident spiritual authority. While the Hasidic courts expanded, their moral authority was not bolstered. The increase in the numbers of Hasidic courts and the ease with which rabbis related to deceased Hassidic court heads declared themselves as heirs - a trend that picked up pace in the last two decades in Israel and the U.S. - generated contempt toward traditional values and behavior.

Photographs of Hasidic court leaders and Lithuanian yeshivas at family affairs, which had always been taboo, have become commonplace in American and Israeli courts and yeshivas.

Reports about the goings on in the courts and rabbis' families appear regularly in religious weeklies alongside pictures of rituals and family events, affording these leaders celebrity status.

It is no wonder, then, that the ban on attending a Hasidic "rock" concert is seen as the celebrities' wrangle for a spot in the limelight.

The Hasidic movement's privatization poses a grave threat to the movement's future, brought about by the weakening of the strict discipline that had ensured the rabbis' authority and preserved the Hasidic courts' integrity.

Controversies have trailed the Hasidic movement almost since its foundation, but family feuds and conflicts have recently erupted within the families of prominent rabbis and the courts themselves.

These tend to be leadership feuds among the sons of rabbis who have died. The leader's position affords them control over large educational institutions and budgets. Two central Hasidic dynasties have recently split in America - Satmar and Bobov - and each has turned into multiple hostile factions. The Vishnitz Hasidic dynasty in Israel is presently embroiled in a feud.

Rabbi Israel Belsky said...

They're lying. UOJ put them up to this. He has it in for Rubashkin just like he has it in for Margulies.

http://www.forward.com/articles/11363/#

The AgriProcessors slaughterhouse in Postville, Iowa, received 250 non-compliance records from the United States Department of Agriculture during 2006, five of them for inadequate safeguards against Mad Cow disease, and multiple others for fecal matter in the food production area. While the entire beef, poultry and egg industry had 34 recalls in 2006, AgriProcessors had two during the last eight months, both of them Class I, the highest risk level.

In both March and September of 2006 the USDA sent the AgriProcessors plant manager a “Letter of Warning” reviewing a series of problems. At the end of the three-page letter in September, the inspector wrote that the slaughterhouse’s efforts to correct the problems had been “ineffective.” The letter concluded: “these findings lead us to question your ability to maintain sanitary conditions, and to produce a safe and wholesome product.”

AgriProcessors is the largest producer of kosher beef and markets its product under the Aaron’s Best and Supreme Kosher labels, among others. The Postville slaughterhouse is the only kosher slaughterhouse producing both beef and chicken.

The documents were released in response to a Freedom of Information Act request by the United Food and Commercial Workers, which has been attempting to unionize the workers at the Postville plant. The documents all stem from incidents between January 1, 2006 and January 24, 2007. They are being released to the public by the UFCW at a press conference later today.

Amanda Eamich, a spokeswoman for the Food Safety and Inspection Service, told the Forward that “whenever non-compliance is found, non-compliance records are issued. If there are repeated concerns, the letter of warning is issued and we work to address that.”

Eamich said the Postville plant has addressed the issues and is currently in compliance.

A spokesman for AgriProcessors did not return calls seeking comment before press time.

The documents follow a series of complaints about AgriProcessors. In 2005 the animal rights group People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals released a video showing unsettling images of animals being slaughtered at the Postville plant. Another video was released last month showing the kill floor at a kosher slaughterhouse in Nebraska that is owned by the same family that owns AgriProcessors.

AgriProcessors has also been criticized for the treatment of its workers, in part because of a report in the Forward in 2006.

The release of these USDA documents, though, appears to be the first time that concerns have been publicly raised about the safety of the food from AgriProcessors, and the documents add a new dimension to AgriProcessor’s problems given the sensitivity of food safety in the United States. Kosher meat is often marketed as being under stricter supervision because it is overseen by both government and kosher inspectors.

The AgriProcessors plant is overseen by a number of kosher certifiers who have kosher inspectors in the plant on a regular basis, including from the Orthodox Union.

The 250 USDA non-compliance records given to AgriProcessors during 2006 vary from benign matters of protocol to what the inspectors term “very serious” violations.

There were at least 18 records in which AgriProcessors was cited for having fecal matter on the animals being prepared. During the last 10 days of December, after AgriProcessors had received its letter of warning, it received six warnings for fecal matter. On December 26, the inspector wrote that during multiple checks of 10 chickens “fecal contamination varied between 70 and 80%.” Other problems, including bile contamination, were noted at the time. After a number of warnings, the inspector wrote that “further planned actions have either not been implemented or have not been effective.”

The inspector issued another similar citation a day later.

There were also at least five instances in which AgriProcessors was cited for not taking the required measures to fend off Mad Cow disease. In one instance, an inspector says he asked for a suspicious cow to be taken off the line and later discovered that the cow had been slaughtered with the rest of the animals. The inspector says he informed someone at the company of the “very serious noncompliance that had occurred.”

It is not immediately clear how these statistics compare to those at other similarly sized slaughterhouses. The company did have two major recalls within the last eight months, which can be compared with the 35 recalls made in the entire meat, poultry and egg industry during 2006.

In January of this year AgriProcessors recalled 35,000 pounds of beef due to mislabeling that did not mention egg albumen. Most recently, in July, 2,700 pounds of hot dogs were recalled due to “possible underprocessing.” Both of these were Class I recalls, which are made when there is a “reasonable probability that the use of the product will cause serious, adverse health consequences or death.”

This is not the first time that AgriProcessors has landed in trouble due to documents released by the USDA in response to a Freedom of Information Act request. In 2006, the animal rights group PETA secured the release of documents in which USDA officials censured AgriProcessors for the inhumane treatment of its animals.

Jim Blau, assistant director of strategic resources at the United Food and Commercial Workers, said that workers at the plant tipped the union off to food safety problems. Blau said his organization, which represents close to 300,000 food production workers, was interested in dealing with the issues at AgriProcessors as a matter of protecting the industry.

“When you see things like this — it’s not good for the industry that there is a company that’s out there behaving like this,” Blau said.

Musmach of a major yeshiva said...

Two years ago we bought Rubashkin chicken hotdogs. The hotdog casings did not contain meat. Instead, they were completely stuffed with feathers. We called Rubashkin's office in NY where a vilda chaya woman screamed at me, blee guzma mit kolos uvrokim, then promptly hung up. Someone in the food industry gave me another phone number. The fellow who answered spoke in a very polite tone but insisted he is only a distributor and not Agriprocessors itself. A kashrus insider informed me the fellow is a liar as he is the company itself. I then tried calling Rubashkin in Iowa, only to get the runaround. They expressed "surprise" and no one offered to make amends.

I then called the OU, who mached avek any achrayus until they were blue in the face. It did not phase them whatsoever, even though I pointed out that such an occurance signals unsanitary conditions at the plant.

I wrote this same story on R' Yudel Shain's website 2 years ago but Rabbi Shain chose not to publish it at the time.

I just retyped it there and I am sure he will publish it now.

Tuvya Chaim Neuhoff said...

I thought I'd take a break from putzing around the bungalow to see what nefarious schemes UOJ is up to this week. I hate to correct my rebbe, Maran Rav Belsky, but it's not just that UOJ has it in for Rubashkin and Margulies. It's more like he attacked Kolko as an excuse to "get" Margulies and he attacks Rubashkin as an excuse to "get" Belsky.

That's how I see it when looking at the world through Bungalow Putz colored glasses.

Call the Authorities! said...

Musmach,

I don't understand why you didn't call the Board of Health of the FDA or some other regulatory body. You complaint about Rubashkin's not admitting their guilt is akin to getting worked up because Kolko won't apologize for his crimes.

As a single professional almost all my meals are cooked and/or eaten outside my home. I would estimate that 75% of my meals are eaten at non-kosher restaurants and diners and the rest in kosher ones. Sure there are quality concerns in non-kosher restaurants but the level of service that non-kosher restaurants offer dwarfs the same service provided by kosher ones. Whereas non-kosher establishments genuinely seem to want your business and will go out of their way to get it, kosher ones seem not to give a darn as the options for most strict kashrut observers is limited.

So when you see insects or rodents in a kosher restaurant, management laughs because they assume that they have you by the cojones and that most Jews are averse to turning to the public authorities against a fellow tribesman, thinking instead to settle their issues with uncaring management or the kashrut certifiers (who probably care even less).

So what's the solution? As I started this piece out, go to the city department of health. Tell them that you found chicken feathers in your hot dog or saw a fly in the restaurant. Have them look into the problem. I assure you that the city will be a lot more proactive in getting to the problem than the Kashrut certifier or the management, who are benefiting from their lackadaisical health and safety standards.

Anonymous said...

IS COLMER BACK IN THE USA?
I WOULD LIKE TO PAY HIM A VISIT.

Observant Jew said...

Before all the know-it-alls criticize Musmach, consider this. One of the top people at the State level who are responsible for these issues is Rabbi Luzer Weiss. Even secular and non-Jewish officials will not make a move that is politically sensitive without the green light from Spitzer or Bloomberg. Do you have any idea how much clout Satmar and other voting blocs have with them?

Moishe Arye Friedman said...

http://www.thejewishweek.com/news/newscontent.php3?artid=14294

If the Viener cheder won't take my kids, maybe Belsky and Margo can use their pull with Rubashkin to get them into the Chabad cheder in Postville Iowa.

Rabbi Anchelle Perl said...

http://www.thejewishweek.com/news/newscontent.php3?artid=14385

Can anyone tell me if Shea Fishman is all there? After the flood in my shul, he was the first one to call me - even before the insurance adjuster.

shea Fishman said...

I'm trying to stop the UOJ hurricane.

Rubashkin Truck Driver said...

http://failedmessiah.typepad.com/failed_messiahcom/files/Fecalandbilecontamination.PDF

Since UOJ bills himself as the Roto Rooter guy, maybe he can clean up the @#$%, I mean fecal contamination at Rubashkin.

Aish Hatorah in violation of the psak of rabbi Moshe Sternbuch said...

Psak Halacha from Rabbi Moshe Sternbuch:

"You ask what are the guidelines for kiruv programs - that encourage Jews to fully observe the Torah - which take place in religious schools or organized events. In particular should a person who is not halachically Jewish – because his mother is not Jewish but his father is - be encouraged or even allowed to participate?

I have heard that there are rabbis who not only permit it but even encourage it, They assert that especially those people who already view themselves as Jewish – even though they are mistaken - should be encouraged to participate because they might eventually convert.

My view is that it is absolutely forbidden to try to proselytize a non-Jew even if he mistakenly views himself as Jewish. One obvious reason is that such an approach actually encourages intermarriage. If people with only a Jewish father are encouraged to participate in Jewish educational events it will convey the message that in some sense they are actually Jewish. That is because it is commonly accepted that only Jews are allowed to participate in these events.

Thus this innovation crosses the red lines that have always been accepted by Torah true Jews. Typically the intermarried couple does not realize that they are constantly transgressing prohibitions which carry the punishment of kares [Rambam Hilchos Issurei Bi’ah 12:6]. But at least they need to be aware that intermarriage cuts them off completely from the Jewish people. If we allow and even encourage their non-Jewish offspring to participate in Jewish educational events, they will feel that they still have an intimate connection to the Jewish people – G-d forbid!

Another basis of concern is that I see this as a violation of following non-Jewish practices (chukas akum). These rabbis are showing mercy to the Jewish father by a de-facto acknowledgment of the non-Jewish concept of patrilineal descent. According to the unanimously held Torah view - any person with a non-Jewish mother is completely
non-Jewish. Also the gratuitous granting of Jewish status and benefits to this non-Jewish child violates the Torah prohibition of Lo Techanem.

These rabbis also try to justify their innovation by claiming that it is a solution to the massive problem resulting from the intermarriage of Russian Jews. They assert that one should encourage the conversion of the child of a non-Jewish mother because the Russian Jews intermarried because of the unfortunate circumstances under the Communists. Therefore they are to be regarded as innocent children who grew up in captivity (tinok shenishba). They feel it is appropriate to show special mercy on these unfortunate people.

I agree that they should be shown special sensitivity and leniencies. However this is only when they have at least distanced themselves from their intermarried parents or have already indicated an interest in genuine conversion. However if the parents insist on continuing their intermarriage, there is no halachic basis to be sorry for them. The child in that case is a non-Jew and will remain as such.

Concerning the specific case that you mentioned of a student whose father is Jewish but the mother is a non-Jew. One of the kiruv programs wants to include him – even though he still lives with his parents. You mentioned that a number of American rabbis have given halachic rulings that his participation in the program should be encouraged
because he might convert. Do not associate yourself with their programs. You will receive much greater reward by disassociating from them than the possible benefit that might result.

I am being deliberately brief in my comments here - even though there is clearly much more to mention. That is because the plague of intermarriage has already spread here to the Holy Land – the palace of the King. The Holy One Blessed be He should help us and quickly bring into actuality our Redemption. Eliyahu should come and purify our camp so that we are fit to receive the countenance of our righteous Moshiach".

Call the Authorities! said...

Observant Jew,

Rabbi Weiss is the head of Kosher Law Enforcement on the State level. As I understand things, Rabbi Weiss' primary role is to ensure that foods advertised as being kosher are, in fact, kosher. Sanitary conditions are beyond the realm of his role with the State. He is unaffiliated with the FDA, the NYC Department of Health, or any of the half-dozen other health-related organizations that come to mind that one could call in order to inform them of unsanitary or unhealthy food conditions.

Not everything is a political conspiracy and not all government organizations are corrupt. And I assure you that the FDA doesn't give a sweet rat's ass whether or not the Mayor of New York City cares that there are unsanitary food conditions in a Iowa slaughterhouse. If there's proof of unsanitary or unhealthy conditions, the regulatory bodies will almost assuredly act.

Israeli said...

colmer is fighting extradition. i dont think he will be back in the states for a long while.

Anonymous said...

I would definitly want to speak with the author of this letter, I can shed a little light on letting him know who this Chasidic pervert is and where he lives, He has been doing these things for many years now and nothing is being done about it, If we are talking about the same person then I want to let everyone know who it is and the damage that he has done for over 30 years allready..So the person wrote this letter please email me at chesky1425@aol.com and if we conclude that it is the same person then I have alot of information about this sick pervert

Level One Mobilization in Boro Park said...

I only saw a Level 1 Mobilization twice before. First, almost 20 years ago when a car was stolen with a baby in the back seat. The other time was on Sept. 11th. This means that all cops off duty or on vacation must report to duty. They are also joined either voluntarily (or mandatory on 9/11) by all firefighters and EMTs.

http://www.vosizneias.com/2007/08/borough-park-brooklyn-ny-child.html

Borough Park, Brooklyn, NY +Child Assaulted+
Originally Posted 8/10/07 1:29 PM

Borough Park, Brooklyn, NY - NYPD of the 66th Pct called for a level one mobilization due to another assault on a 13-year-old child by a white male in his 30's wearing a black suit.
The perp driving a black car on 52nd Street and 15th Avenue in the Boro Park section of Brooklyn, asked the girl to help him search for his cell phone which he lost, while she tried helping him search for the phone he took her into the vehicle and assaulted her, and let her go on 55th Street.
Perp fled unknown direction.

Arutz Sheva said...

Confirmed: Arafat Died of AIDS
by Ezra HaLevi

Arch-terrorist Yasser Arafat’s doctor has confirmed the long-circulating rumors that the PLO chairman had AIDS – though the doctor insists Israel poisoned Arafat as well, causing his death.

Rumors have long circulated in both Israel and the Palestinian Authority that Arafat’s symptoms prior to his death were caused by AIDS. Within the PA, Israel has always been accused of poisoning the PLO chairman.

Now, Arafat’s private doctor has joined other PLO officials in acknowledging that Arafat had the HIV virus, but is holding on to the claim that Israel was responsible for his ultimate demise, in a French hospital.

Dr. Ashraf al-Kurdi told the Jordanian Amman News Agency that Arafat did, in fact, have AIDS – but insisted that the HIV virus was injected into the chairman’s bloodstream, and not the result of illicit sexual activity.

Al-Jazeera interrupted an interview with al-Kurdi due to his mention of Arafat’s having had AIDS.

French doctors who treated Arafat insisted after his death that he had died of a massive stroke after suffering intestinal inflammation, jaundice and disseminated intravascular coagulation (DIC), a blood condition.

Another Arafat aide, Bassam Abu Sharif, accused former French President Jacques Chirac of withholding knowledge that Israel killed Arafat with a substance that destroys red blood cells.

Even before Arafat died, US author and intelligence expert John Loftus said on the John Batchelor Show on WABC radio on October 26 that it was widely known in CIA circles that Arafat was dying from AIDS. Loftus further said that was the reason the US kept preventing Israel from killing Arafat – to allow him to be discredited by the ailment.

A 1987 book by Lt.-Gen. Ion Pacepa, the deputy chief of Romania's intelligence service under Communist dictator Nicola Ceausescu, may explain how Arafat contracted the sexually transmitted disease.

In his memoirs "Red Horizons," Pacepa relates a 1978 conversation with the general assigned to teach Arafat and the PLO techniques to deceive the West into granting the organization recognition. The general told him about Arafat’s nightly relations with his young male bodyguards and multiple partners. “Beginning with his teacher when he was a teen-ager and ending with his current bodyguards. After reading the report, I felt a compulsion to take a shower whenever I had been kissed by Arafat, or even just shaken his hand," Pacepa wrote.

Senior US intelligence official James J. Welsh, the National Security Agency's former PA analyst, told WorldNetDaily, "One of the things we looked for when we were intercepting Fatah communications were messages about Ashbal [Lion cub] members who would be called to Beirut from bases outside of Beirut. The Ashbal were often orphaned or abandoned boys who were brought into the organization, ostensibly to train for later entry into Fedayeen fighter units. Arafat always had several of these 13-15 year old boys in his entourage. We figured out that he would often recall several of these boys to Beirut just before he would leave for a trip outside Lebanon. It proved to be a good indicator of Arafat's travel plans. While Arafat did have a regular security detail, many of those thought to be security personnel - the teenage boys - were actually there for other purposes."

Leopold Margulies said...

UOJ is trying to be a wise guy by sneaking in that Arutz Sheva report on Yasser Arabfart. This is part and parcel of his conspiracy theory that I and Yasser are the same person.

Anonymous said...

There was also a Level One Mobilization for a brief while when the airplane crashed into Belle Harbor. It was called off when they realized it wasn't Arab terrorism. The yeshiva there is around the corner from the crash site and gave food and drink to people whose homes were destroyed until the Office of Emergency Management set up shop.

Central Intelligence Agency - NCS Division said...

https://www.cia.gov/offices-of-cia/clandestine-service/index.html

"the US kept preventing Israel from killing Arafat – to allow him to be discredited by the ailment."

For similar reasons we told UOJ to not demolish Margo on the first try. UOJ restrained himself and agreed with us that Margo should live long enough to see his life's work go to pot, despite his big lineup of Hungarian supporters.

Westchester / Rockland Journal News said...

http://jewishsurvivors.blogspot.com/2007/08/monsey-new-york-2-sex-offenders-accused.html

2 Monsey sex offenders accused of violating new residence law
By JANE LERNER
THE JOURNAL NEWS
August 11, 2007

MONSEY - Two convicted sex offenders have been charged under a new law that prevents them from living near schools and other places where children gather, Ramapo police said yesterday.

The arrests of the two Monsey men might be the first time the county law has been used, Detective Lt. Brad Weidel said.

Ramapo police regularly check the whereabouts of the 17 registered sex offenders who live in town, Weidel said.

After the county enacted a law in February that prohibited sex offenders from coming within 1,000 feet of places where children gather, including schools, parks, day care centers and libraries, the town conducted an audit to see if the registered sex offenders were in compliance.

The law allows police to force designated Level 2 and Level 3 sex offenders to move. Level 1 offenders are considered to be a low risk for repeat offenses. Level 3 offenders are considered the highest risk.

After checking all registered offenders in town, investigators identified two who appeared to be violating the law. They investigated further.

Yoel Oberlander, 26, was charged with violating the law because he lived within 1,000 feet of a private elementary school and public park.

He was arrested Thursday and told to return Aug. 16 to Ramapo Town Court.

Betzalel Dym, 21, was arrested yesterday and charged with violating the law by living within 1,000 feet of a child care facility. He was told to return Aug. 27 to Town Court.

The charges are a class B misdemeanor. A conviction on a first offense brings a fine of up to $500 and up to three months in jail.

Oberlander pleaded guilty in 2002 to second-degree sexual abuse, second-degree unlawful imprisonment and endangering the welfare of a child, all misdemeanors.

He admitted in County Court to having sexual contact with an 11-year-old girl. The sexual abuse took place in Spring Valley and Ramapo.

Dym was convicted in August 2006 of first-degree sexual abuse, a felony, for having sex with a 10-year-old Monsey boy. Ramapo police arrested Dym for having sex with the child five times between January and May of that year.

Ramapo police said they had no reason to believe that either man was currently involved in illegal activity at their residences, Weidel said.

More information
- The state registry: www.criminaljustice.state.ny. us/nsor

- The state Division of Criminal Justice Services maintains an information line about the sex offender registry at 800-262-3257.

- Clarkstown Police Department's sex offender registry: www.town.clarkstown.ny.us/html/sex_offender_registry.asp

Yuval Barak said...

Some of the Israeli Baraks, including Ehud Barak, are originally named Brog from Ponivizh. The same mishpocho as R' Avigdor Miller's son in law, Rabbi Brog from Chaim Berlin.

http://www.town.clarkstown.ny.us/cgi_files/offenders/YuvalBarak_new2.pdf

Level 2 sex offender in the Monsey area.

Shea Fishman said...

This must have been part of UOJ's multi-step plan to deal with Margulies.

http://www.climateark.org/shared/reader/welcome.aspx?linkid=81603

ABC News
Date: August 9, 2007

New York City is cleaning up this morning after a massive weather system roared through Wednesday, dumping up to 3 inches of rain, paralyzing the mass transit system and spawning a tornado that touched down in Brooklyn.

It's believed to be the first twister to hit Brooklyn since the late 1800s.

Classified as an F2 tornado, capable of winds between 111 mph and 135 mph, the twister snapped tree trunks like toothpicks, peeled open roofs and ripped off the sides of stately old brownstone homes.

The rain sent torrents of water into the nation's largest subway system, stopping trains in their tracks. Some had to be backed up to retreat from rising water. Thousands of commuters were stranded, late to work or never got there at all.

New York Gov. Elliot Spitzer is demanding the Metropolitan Transportation Authority, which runs the subway system, explain why measures to improve storm drainage apparently did not work.

One Brooklyn man may have said it best, "Whaddayoutalkin' about a tornado? We ain't in Kansas!"

Ohel said...

Luke Ford is working on a story about Ohel Family Services.
anyone with information or stories please email him



lukeisback@gmail.com

Anonymous said...

his name is berel goldman he is a molester for over 30 years and he is not even on the awareness center its a great mitzvah to be mefarsim this he might do teshova

Aron "Tort Putz" Twerski said...

"Classified as an F2 tornado, capable of winds between 111 mph and 135 mph, the twister snapped tree trunks like toothpicks"

Yo Fishman, UOJ's latest nickname around 42 Broadway is "F3 Feivy".

Anonymous said...

Colmer should realize what he is in for and just hang himself with his bed sheets.

Flatbush said...

Greetings Anon653

I knew Colmer and I think he will fight this to the death. I am certain he thinks he is a victim and this being so, the guilt wil never get to him.

When Colmer finally gets convicted maybe then will he see suicide as alternative to living the rest of his life as a sex offender.

Anonymous said...

Alister Doyle & Shea Fishman, Environment Correspondents

OSLO (Reuters) - Scientists are trying to improve predictions about the impact of global warming this century by pooling estimates about the risk of floods or desertification.

"We feel certain about some of the aspects of future climate change, like that it is going to get warmer," said Matthew Collins of the British Met Office. "But on many of the details it's very difficult to say."

"The way we can deal with this is a new technique of expressing the predictions in terms of probabilities," Collins told Reuters of climate research published in the journal Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society A.

Shea Fishman said...

By THE ASSOCIATED PRESS

Government forecasters minimally reduced their prediction for the Atlantic hurricane season, but said that up to nine hurricanes and up to 16 tropical storms were expected to form, still a season busier than average. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration maintained its estimate that three to five of the hurricanes would be major storms of Category 3 strength or greater. The original report forecast up to 17 tropical storms, with up to 10 becoming hurricanes

Avi L. Shafran said...

This is terrible. People writing to UOJ for advice as if he's Ann Landers or Dear Abby. We have to figure out a better way to attack him at the next fresser convention.

Anonymous said...

I've also seen the dark skin chassidishe dude just hanging around.

Does he have a job? He's one of the only people I've ever seen outside of 'hoods like Harlem who looks like he does nothing.

Tuvya Chaim Neuhoff said...

I'm trying to impress upon the Moetzes to make a horaas shaa to push off Elul until after Labor Day so that it doesn't interfere with the bungalow season.

If Maran Rav Belsky says that milk from treif cows is not treif, then one can zicher say that it's not really Elul even though it's Elul.

Yankel Applegrad said...

Not a bad idea from the Bungalow Putz. Yudi Kolko could use an extra couple weeks of R&R at Silver Lake.