Tuesday, May 31, 2011

The Agudath Israel Defense - The Child Rapists Are Us - Innocent by Association!

*אנחנו זונות - היינו למכור את האמהות שלנו בשקל*


......."The response has been a gathering French outrage. I interviewed Strauss-Kahn long ago. He struck me as charming and very smart. Most impressive to me was that he seemed determined to modernize French socialism, a process too long delayed with the result that the French Socialist Party is a European dinosaur.

None of this, however, has anything to do with whether he attempted rape and forcibly imprisoned a 32-year-old chambermaid. Nor, of course, does his distinguished stewardship of the International Monetary Fund. The talent of Strauss-Kahn, 62, is not the issue.

Yet his French cohorts — men just as charming and smart as Strauss-Kahn — have made it their business to say, in essence, that he could not have done what he is accused of doing because he is one of us. He is, in effect, innocent by association

Oh, s’il vous please!

....."Perhaps Lévy’s defense was the most extraordinary, for its cavalier dismissal of the African woman at the heart of the drama when African victims have been a focus of his various campaigns, but even more so for its language on Strauss-Kahn: “Charming, seductive, yes, certainly; a friend to women and, first of all, to his own woman, naturally; but this brutal and violent individual, this wild animal, this primate, obviously no, it’s absurd.”

And here we are. There are plenty of facts, incidents and complaints — never fully investigated by the French press — to suggest that the serious charges against Strauss-Kahn are not “absurd” and that a young African woman’s voice raised against violent abuse by the powerful should have its day in court.

Bin Laden is dead. The Jews went to work. Suite 2806 is just a number".

Facts count!

[Blogger] Conspiracy theories are the refuge of the disempowered!

....And So It Will Be!


Brilliant Guy said...

The French also treat their politicians like gedolim, so I hear. That's why the journalist Strauss-Kahn raped in France was too afraid to come forward. He must have thought that in New York, he would have it the same way.

Wasn't he surprised.

Unlucky for him, this whole thing happened in Manhattan, because if it would have happened in brooklyn, the Gedolim would have condemned the maid and not let it get to the "goyishe" courts, then lined up to him, palms outstreched, waiting for a fat check.

And no doubt the Rabbonim would have gotton one, because they are always willing to crush victims for money.

One Year Since Troppers Fall 31 said...

Tablet Magazine:

"Con Game: How a New York rabbi tried to remake the rules on converting to Judaism, until a sex tape—and a family feud between his wealthy backers—brought him down

By Allison Hoffman. Jan 13, 2010

[Photo: Tropper, at left, at a 2006 Eternal Jewish Family conference with Shlomo Amar, the Sephardic chief rabbi of Israel, and Nachum Eisenstein, a leading Jerusalem rabbi, in a photo on the EJF website. EternalJewishFamily.org]

This is the first in a series.

December was a very bad month for Rabbi Leib Tropper, a powerful ultra-Orthodox rabbi who has been seeking to determine the standards for conversion in Israel and throughout the world through his little-known yet influential organization, Eternal Jewish Family. First, black-and-white posters appeared on walls in Jerusalem and other Israeli cities threatening public disgrace if the rabbi refused to “cease his filth.” While the definition of “filth” was left up to readers’ imaginations, photos and video were prominently mentioned in the text, which demanded that Tropper suspend his involvement in performing religious conversions.

On December 14, Eternal Jewish Family—which is based in the ultra-Orthodox enclave of Monsey, New York, and backed by the billionaire board president of New York’s 92nd Street Y, and his nephew, who owns one of Israel’s most famous soccer clubs—suddenly announced that its founder was resigning his post to “pursue a variety of other interests,” the details of which were again left to readers’ imaginations.

Two days later, the filth appeared online: audio tapes, allegedly of the rabbi, trying to coerce a single mother from Houston into having sex with other men for money—and as the price of her conversion to Judaism.

“Would you have a problem with just talking about sex to a guy, or only actually doing it?” the man asks on one of the tapes. In another, he reassures her, “I could roleplay a rape with you, but I couldn’t actually rape you.” A third featured explicit phone sex between the two. Shortly after the tapes surfaced, the hopeful convert, a minister’s daughter named Shannon Orand, told the blogger Shmarya Rosenberg—who has covered the story on his blog, Failed Messiah—that the rabbi had said, “If you fulfill my needs, I’ll fulfill yours—and you need a conversion.” Through an attorney, Tropper released a statement that admitted no wrongdoing but expressed regret for “what has appeared to be conduct not within our significant laws of modesty.” (When Tablet Magazine reached Tropper by phone at his home in Monsey to request comment, he simply said, “No, no,” and hung up.)

The sex tapes appeared to support the allegations of misconduct against Tropper, and they briefly elevated what started out as internecine rumor-mongering among ultra-Orthodox factions into legitimate tabloid fodder. (“Tal-Mood for Love,” read the headline above a brief item in the New York Post.) To more sensitive listeners, the tapes exhibited not just the particular sexual perversions of a rabbi from Monsey, but also the moral horror of a religious figure exploiting the trust of a woman who was hoping to join the Jewish religion and who was dependent on his authority. (Orand completed her conversion in Jerusalem last week under the auspices of a different Orthodox rabbi.)"

One Year Since Troppers Fall 32 said...

"Con Game: How a New York rabbi tried to remake the rules on converting to Judaism, until a sex tape—and a family feud between his wealthy backers—brought him down

Other than the mention in the Post, mainstream American newspapers ignored what is surely one of the weirdest, most embarrassing, and most consequential scandals in recent Jewish history. Mainstream rabbinical and Jewish communal organizations in the United States also chose to be silent. Yet the rise and fall of Leib Tropper raises fundamental questions about the abuse of a closed process in which a small group of ultra-Orthodox authorities are allowed to set their own binding terms for conversion to Judaism using the authority of the State of Israel and without any meaningful oversight. It is also the story of how an almost unknown rabbi managed to become one of the most powerful authorities on the question of conversion, fueled not by a superior knowledge of the Talmud but by access to something that appears to be even dearer to the hearts of the modern rabbinical establishment: money.

Tropper is a rare figure in the Jewish world: a creature of the insular ultra-Orthodox community whose relationships tie him to Texas oil fields, professional sports teams in Israel, and mainstream secular Jewish organizations—specifically, the 92nd Street Y, one of New York’s best-known Jewish community institutions, and home to one of the city’s most exclusive preschools. After spending more than two decades toiling in relative obscurity in Monsey, Tropper catapulted four years ago into the milieu of Israel’s powerful ultra-Orthodox rabbinate, propelled by his two powerful and wealthy patrons: Thomas Kaplan, the billionaire oil and mining wildcatter, and his nephew, Guma Aguiar.

Now 32 years old, Aguiar was born to a Jewish mother but raised as an evangelical Christian. Kaplan—the younger brother of Aguiar’s mother, Ellen—introduced Aguiar to Tropper in 2003, after Aguiar had already begun exploring Judaism. Under the rabbi’s tutelage, Aguiar adopted a Hebrew name—Yehuda Dovid—and, in 2007, made aliyah to Israel, where he has become a celebrity, thanks to his recent investments in the Beitar Jerusalem soccer team and Hapoel Jerusalem, the city’s basketball franchise. Kaplan and Aguiar cemented a philanthropic relationship with Tropper by directing millions of dollars to his Eternal Jewish Family. That money, in turn, enabled Tropper to influence determinations of which rabbis would have the authority to perform conversions—that is, to determine who is and who is not a Jew.

“On a personal level, he was not particularly well respected,” said Rosenberg, who is a fierce critic of the ultra-Orthodox world on his blog. “But insert EJF and conversions into it, along with Tom Kaplan’s money and Guma’s money, and suddenly Tropper became one of the most powerful rabbis in the world”."

One Year Since Troppers Fall 33 said...

"Con Game: How a New York rabbi tried to remake the rules on converting to Judaism, until a sex tape—and a family feud between his wealthy backers—brought him down

Tropper’s relationship with Kaplan and Aguiar, once the source of his power, ultimately played a role in his undoing. For the past year, the two men have been locked in an Oedipal court battle over the $2.55 billion fortune resulting from the 2007 sale of their natural-gas exploration company, Leor Energy, to the oil giant EnCana. Tropper agreed to appear as a witness for Kaplan, and, in response, Aguiar turned against his former mentor. According to Tropper’s wife, Laurel Blond, Aguiar made a phone call to the rabbi’s house in March in which he claimed he had “thousands of rabbis praying for Tom Kaplan’s death” and encouraged the rabbi to “switch sides.” In early April, Aguiar confronted Tropper in Jerusalem at the David Citadel Hotel and, according to court records, threatened to throw the rabbi off a ninth-floor balcony.

Then, in October, Aguiar sued Tropper in an Israeli court, claiming that the rabbi misappropriated donations. “He had gone to Rabbi Tropper for several years as his rabbi—he had confidential discussions with him, he was his spiritual advisor,” Aguiar’s lawyers told a federal judge in Florida last June. (Kaplan’s attorney, Harley Tropin, said in a statement that Kaplan would not comment on the Tropper scandal in light of ongoing litigation.)

When the sex-tape scandal broke last month, Aguiar was among those who forwarded the audio recordings of Tropper’s conversations with Orand to Failed Messiah’s Rosenberg, ensuring that the rabbi would be publicly humiliated. In a phone conversation with Tablet Magazine, Aguiar initially said he forwarded the audio “to some people because I thought they were funny,” but subsequently said he only sent the recordings in response to a request from Rosenberg. “There’s no such thing as revenge,” Aguiar said. “It’s just exposing the truth.”

Aguiar said Kaplan introduced him to Tropper in 2003, after he had already begun studying Judaism with another Monsey rabbi, Tovia Singer, who specializes in reaching out to evangelical Christians who, like Aguiar, were born Jewish, and getting them to “return” to Judaism. With his uncle, Aguiar was instrumental in prompting Tropper to expand beyond his work with baalei teshuva—returning Jews—into the world of conversions. (Aguiar’s wife, Jamie, whom he met in high school, is a blond former evangelical Christian who converted to Judaism.) By 2004, according to emails filed in one of the federal court cases, Tropper had started writing a manual designed to streamline conversions among the various religious courts in America. That year, Kaplan’s foundation gave Tropper’s organization $154,000; the next year, Kaplan and Aguiar directed more than $700,000 to the rabbi’s group.

In early 2006, Tropper told a reporter that EJF was going to offer “Cadillac conversions” to non-Jews who were concerned about making sure their conversions—and, particularly for those converting to marry, their children’s status as born Jews—would be recognized by religious authorities in Israel, where full citizenship depends on it. Tropper offered a clever soundbite: “Why settle for a broken Chevy, which may go down the highway but nobody wants it in their driveway?”."

One Year Since Troppers Fall 34 said...

"Con Game: How a New York rabbi tried to remake the rules on converting to Judaism, until a sex tape—and a family feud between his wealthy backers—brought him down

The timing for Tropper’s new product line couldn’t have been better. A feud that had been simmering for years between Israel’s insular, powerful rabbinate and American rabbis erupted into full-scale war in April 2006, when Shlomo Amar, Israel’s Sephardic chief rabbi, announced that he would not automatically recognize conversions approved by the Rabbinical Council of America, the main union of Modern Orthodox rabbis. (The Israeli chief rabbinate does not recognize any conversions, marriages, or other rabbinical functions performed by Reform or Conservative rabbis, on the grounds that the Reform and Conservative movements do not recognize halachic authority and hence are no longer branches of Judaism). Amar’s announcement created a groundswell of interest in Tropper’s Cadillacs, and the rabbi spent lavishly to promote his brand of specially certified conversions to the ultra-Orthodox rabbinate. According to financial records, in 2006 Tropper spent $1.6 million—more than double his previous year’s budget—hosting conferences and paying for rabbis to attend his educational programming, including a lavish Jerusalem summit in July 2006 at the five-star David Citadel devoted to “Improving Conversions and Preventing Intermarriage.” Amar turned up, along with Ashkenazic Chief Rabbi Yonah Metzger and Rabbi Yosef Shalom Elyashiv, a nonagenarian considered to be one of the ultra-Orthodox world’s leading halachic authorities.

Overnight, the rabbi from Monsey had become a major power broker in the ultra-Orthodox world in both America and Israel. In 2007, the last year for which federal tax records are available, Tropper distributed $2.3 million in scholarships and hundreds of thousands of dollars more in unspecified travel and conference accommodations from his Monsey redoubt.

Tropper has been removed from his post at Eternal Jewish Family—which is still chaired by Kaplan—and, according to the group’s executive director, Rabbi Dovid Jacobs, has also been replaced at Horizons, EJF’s parent organization. It isn’t clear whether he remains in control of his yeshiva, Kol Yaakov; a person who answered the phone there Tuesday refused to comment. But in the weeks since Tropper’s downfall, no one in the ultra-Orthodox world has been willing to officially criticize or reprimand the rabbi for what appear to be his profound and sickening sins. At a December meeting, the Council of Torah Sages, the halachic body of Agudath Israel, an ultra-Orthodox umbrella group, discussed the scandal but decided against issuing a comment. Only the Modern Orthodox Rabbinical Council of America has condemned Tropper’s behavior: “What we have heard, if true, violates the fundamental elements of all that Judaism holds sacred,” the council said in a statement, adding that the rabbis welcomed any of Tropper’s victims for counseling.

“It’s like Nixon,” said Tovia Singer, the rabbi who initially sparked Aguiar’s interest in Judaism. “The damage has obviously been done to the haredi community and the more that they’re in denial the more damage it’ll do”."

Kings County Supreme Court said...

When the judge recently screamed at Yudi Kolko that he must be looking for trouble by buying another house in Brooklyn, she had no idea that he might have ideas outside the immediate abode of his YTT victims.

There is a newspaper report this week about a place that gay men go to misbehave. The City sends workers every morning to clean up the mess they leave behind.

Anonymous said...

Come on! stop with the Repeated chazarah about tropper already.

freelakewood said...

what does uoj hold of heimishe politicians?

Paul Mendlowitz said...

Unfortunately, even the good ones, are compromised by corrupt influences.

Skver Mafia 1 said...

The Jewish Daily Forward:

"What Is Really Happening in New Square?

Opinion. By Shulem Deen. Published May 30, 2011, issue of June 10, 2011.

Eighteen years ago, as a Hasidic student at the yeshiva of New Square, I found myself swept up one morning in the frenzy of a mob. I, along with around two dozen young men, ransacked the private dormitory room of a fellow student. We broke open the door, smashed the lock on the bedside cabinet, scattered the contents of dresser drawers across the floor, and ripped blankets, sheets and mattresses from the bed in a desperate search for… well, we weren’t sure what we were searching for. There had been rumors in the study hall that the student in question was in possession of items forbidden by the rules of our austere Hasidic lifestyle. We’d heard rumors of portable TVs, of audiocassettes of secular music, of secular newsmagazines; we didn’t know for certain nor did we care. The important thing was that we demonstrated our willingness and ability to commit violence against those who violated our community’s code of conduct.

In the end we found only several photographs of our friend wearing a baseball cap and a t-shirt, and we thought his adoption of the vulgar sartorial habits of common Americans enough to vindicate our vigilantism.

Our behavior was publicly condemned by yeshiva officials. In private they commended us.

This incident came to mind after the recent events in New Square in which eighteen-year-old Shaul Spitzer, a yeshiva student and attendant to the community’s grand rabbi, attempted to firebomb the house of a dissident member of the community. He ended up inflicting third-degree burns on over 50% of the body of Aron Rottenberg, whose home was the target of the attack. Rottenberg’s crime: he prayed at the wrong synagogue. Instead of the main synagogue, which belongs to grand rabbi David Twersky, Rottenberg attended services at a synagogue a short distance outside the village.

To some, the conflict sounds like the oldest story in the Jewish book: Jews fighting over which synagogue they do or don’t want to worship in. But in New Square there’s a more sinister component. The similarities between the latest incident and that of my teenage years lie in the extra-legal vigilantism that characterizes the enforcement of communal norms within Hasidic communities in general and among the Skver Hasidim of New Square in particular.

Compared to the recent incident in New Square, the one I was involved in was mild. We made a big mess, caused our friend some agitation, but there was little actual damage done to person or property. But over the years, especially once I had abandoned the rigid lifestyle of Skver Hasidism in which I’d spent the bulk of my thirty-six years, I’ve reflected on that incident with a great sense of shame. One image stands out most in my memory: before we took action we sought approval from one of the community’s leading rabbis. “‘Be rid of the evil in your midst,’” he quoted the Bible in solemn approbation of our intentions, and off we went with balled fists. It is easy for me to imagine far greater damage if the conditions were right; if, say, we’d discovered more incriminating evidence of our friend’s deviance, or if, worse, our friend had put up resistance to our attack. Our cause was righteous. Niceties, legalities, and conventional notions of human decency were of little consequence. And the recent attack in New Square shows the real life-threatening extremes to which such vigilantism can be taken."

Skver Mafia 2 said...

"What Is Really Happening in New Square?

There was a time, decades ago, when the all-Hasidic village of New Square was known for its hospitality, its generosity, its simple lifestyle revolving around Torah study and adherence to cherished Hasidic values. Twerksy, the rebbe, has, since his father’s death in 1968, served as the dynastic heir to the leadership of the Skver sect, a Hasidic community with its origins in the Ukrainian town of Skvyra. But as New Square has grown, so have the institutions of power and privilege, and dissidents who sought in full or in part to lead lives outside the rebbe’s orbit found themselves harassed and hounded. In recent decades, those who refused to submit to the will of the rebbe have been subjected to having rocks thrown through the windows of their homes and cars, being spat upon in the streets or in the synagogue, their children harassed in their classrooms by both teachers and classmates.

The Skver Shtetl, as New Square is known to the Hasidic world, is today characterized not by piety but by a cult of personality, the worship of the rebbe, who lives in gilded opulence while the majority of his community lives in poverty. The rebbe eats his meals on silver platters with golden utensils, owns a number of latest model Cadillacs for himself and his family, and lights his Hanukkah candles on a massive six-foot-tall sterling silver menorah that community members told me cost tens of thousands of dollars. Most of his followers, some with families consisting of a dozen or more children, rely on food stamps and Section-8 housing vouchers for basic subsistence.

There is something profoundly perverse about a religious community — which also happens to include a legal municipality (New Square is an incorporated village within the Town of Ramapo, in Rockland County, N.Y.) — where a single man acts as autocratic ruler, complete with the trappings of royalty, with extra-judicial powers over the population that include the administering of real physical and psychological pain.

Skver Hasidim are adamant that the latest incident was the work of a lone zealot, an aberration that was neither ordered nor condoned. But that misses the point. It isn’t the act alone that warrants condemnation but the conditions that allowed for it to occur, conditions that include the belief that coercive measures are valid tools in the battle to preserve their unique brand of Hasidic practice. There is no evidence at this point that the attack was ordered by or committed with the approval of the New Square leadership, at the head of which stand’s New Square’s grand rabbi. But that doesn’t absolve them of culpability. The Skver Rebbe has in the past made no public statements condemning violent attacks, and his comments about this recent incident appear weak and unconvincing, made only to appease the fury of the broader Jewish world, on which New Square relies for various forms of support.

Unless the Skver Rebbe issues a clear and unequivocal condemnation of all forms of harassment in “his” village, further crimes will be committed in his name and for his honor. And the broader Jewish community will rightly place the blame squarely on his shoulders.

Shulem Deen is the founding editor of Unpious.com, a journal for voices on the Hasidic fringe. He is a former Skver Hasid who once lived in New Square."

Skver Rebbe and Iran Ayatola SHARE A MINDSET said...

YNet News:

"Iran cleric: Killing Israeli children OK

Iranian Ayatollah endorses evil: Radical religious cleric known as President Ahmadinejad's spiritual mentor says attacks on Israeli civilians permissible, suicide bombings a Muslim duty

Dudi Cohen. Published: 05.31.11, 02:09 / Israel News

Evil words in Islamic Republic: A senior Iranian cleric, who is known as President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad's spiritual mentor, urged followers to continue suicide attacks against Israelis, including children.

Ayatollah Mohammad Taghi Mesbah, considered one of the Islamic Republic's most radical clerics, issued a religious edict on his website whereby suicide attacks are not only legitimate but are a must for every Muslim, a special paper by the Middle East Media Research Institute shows.

The senior cleric was responding to a question from a follower regarding the difference between "martyr's death" and "suicide." The man, who wrote anonymously, noted that "some people say that martyrdom operations are considered suicide and that they are haram (forbidden) because they contradict Islam."

In response, Mesbah expressed his regret that his follower has fallen victim to "propaganda of the enemies of Islam." He added that the follower was wasting his time instead of focusing on "uprooting the Zionist regime."

"When protecting Islam, the Muslim people depend on martyrdom operations. It not only is allowed, but even is an obligation," Mesbah wrote.

The follower presented another question regarding Islam's position on harming Israelis, wondering whether Hamas and Jihad actions against Israeli civilians are forbidden. He also asked: "How about the Israeli children killed in such attacks?"

The Iranian Ayatollah did not see fit to forbid the killing of children, only noting that Israelis can be harmed unless they openly express their objection to their government's position. He added that even in such cases, harming civilians is permissible if "they are used as human shield and fighting the aggressors depends on attacking those civilians."

Beyond these insights, the cleric did not offer further instructions and failed to censure the killing of children.

Notably, for the followers of Mesbah, his words are considered as a binding religious edict. On several occasions in the past, Iranian President Ahmadinejad also spoke in favor of "martyrdom acts"."

Anonymous said...


whats does UOJ say with regards to rabbis who say people shouldnt get involved in community affairs it is a job for rabbonim