October 13, 2020


Report: Second Hasidic leader secretly treated at home for COVID-19 (Times of Israel, 10/13/20)

A second Hasidic spiritual leader was secretly treated at home for the coronavirus by an Israeli hospital in recent months, a report said Monday.

Following reports that the rabbi at the head of the Belz Hasidic sect was treated by medics from Jerusalem's Hadassah Ein Kerem hospital, Channel 13 reported that the leader of the Sanz Hasidic dynasty received similar treatment.

Rabbi Zvi Elimelech Halberstam, based in Netanya, received medical equipment from the city's Laniado hospital after he refused to be hospitalized, according to the report. [...]

The treatment started after Rokeach, who has ordered his followers to ignore coronavirus restrictions, refused to be hospitalized, the report said. All the necessary medical equipment was brought to his home and his room there was effectively converted into a mini intensive care unit, the report said.

Why Hasidic Brooklyn Was Ready for MAGA Chaos (Elad Nehorai, Oct. 13, 2020, Daily Beast)

In fact, Tischler's rhetoric is not so different from the rhetoric that has come from many Haredi leaders for years.

As the community member explained, for over a decade, some Hasidic community groups have repeatedly used a simple argument to distract from their failures: They are coming for you.

"They always framed every failure as the government coming after them. And what's happening now is that these people grew up with this messaging, and so they're now acting on it," the community member told The Daily Beast. "Whether it was leadership by the measles crisis, by education reform, [controversial circumcision ritual] metzitzah b'peh... they framed it as 'we're hated.'"

All of these examples are moments when the government attempted to restrict the Haredi community, and when their leaders spread the message that the problem wasn't communal. For instance, the problem was not anti-vaxx sentiments leading to the measles crisis. The problem wasn't poverty caused by the lack of secular education in the community. The problem wasn't the dangers of the practice of sucking the blood from a baby's circumcision.

Instead, leaders said, the government--whether it was Gov. Andrew Cuomo, New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio, or someone else--had it in for the Jews.

The rise of Heshy Tischler, then--a nobody wannabe City Council candidate--should be seen as the logical extension of a rhetoric that simply hasn't fully been acted upon until now. As Asher Lovy, an anti-abuse activist who grew up in Orthodox Borough Park, put it, "I don't think it starts with Tischler. It just ends with him."

In other words, the way grievances of the Haredi and Hasidic communities in Brooklyn have been long nursed by self-interested leaders could be considered analogous or even deeply tied to the existential fear many Trump supporters feel about losing their version of America.

All Identitarianisms are the same.

Posted by at October 13, 2020 12:00 AM