Unfortunately, there is a group of extremist secular and haredi elements who together are completely irresponsibly intent on inciting the city. I am informing and promising you that in the future as well I will do my best to protect a united, sane and moderate Jerusalem, the status quo, and that I will not allow such a farce to happen again.
I think people of good will should recognize the truth of this statement. And credit must be given to Mayor Uri Lupolianski for making it.
This is how a civilized mayor of a civilized city should act and this is what he should demand. Not only in this instance but in every instance when residents act in uncivilized ways.
There was recently another incident that Jews acted in uncivil zed ways. A threatened autopsy on a Religious woman was averted because of demonstrations by Charedi zealots. Police officials examining the circumstances of her death acceded to the wishes of the family because they feared the violent protests. And – you guessed it - dumpsters were burning In the streets of Jerusalem again. Apparently these Jerusalemites have found a method of getting their way.
Yes that worked. But at what cost? Taking hostages would have worked too. How far do we go as a civilized society to prevent an Autopsy?
Autopsies are forbidden because of the Halacha that requires a dead body be treated respectfully. It cannot be cut up or dissected unless there are life threatening issues mandating it. An Autopsy is a desecration that is not permitted for the sole purpose of finding a cause of death.
Yehuda Meshi Zahav - the founder of Zaka - the organization that collects body parts after terrorist attacks in an effort to honor this Halacha - has come out with a supportive statement of these kinds of protests:
He also rejected accusations that the chareidim are quick to resort to violence in such cases, explaining the violence in many cases, including the current one, resulted in a police willingness to exhibit flexibility, which was not present before angry residents took to the streets.
As much as I admire what he has achieved and consider it a major Kiddush HaShem, in this instance he is supporting a Chilul HaShem.
This is not how a civilized people should act. We do not prevent Averiros of others by being arsonists. Setting fire to dumpsters endangers all the residents of that area. Virtually all of them are religious (not that this makes any real difference). The burning of those plastic dumpsters in Geula - the densely populated Charedi section of Jerusalem - created a noxious toxic odor harmful to the many who almost certainly inhaled it.
Is the desecration of Jerusalem for this cause what God really wants of His people? Is this how God wants us to act? And yet Mr. Meshi Zahav thinks it is worth it because he seems to feel it’s the only thing that works.
I tend to doubt that. Negotiations by Charedi legislators in the past seem to have worked just as well.
Just because one has creates a Kiddush HaShem in one area does not give him license to support a Chilul HaShem in another. He supports these Charedi criminals. I condemn them.
And then there is the other side of the coin. There is Israel’s medical examiner, Prof. Yehuda Hiss. From a Yeshiva World News (YWN) report:
An investigation of Hiss and his practices a number of years ago revealed that he has a ‘collection’ of specimens, limbs and body parts taken from dead people, many soldiers, leading to the discovery in many cases when the army and authorities asked parents of soldiers for permission to perform autopsies, and the request as turned down, Hiss secretly did indeed perform one. Hundreds of specimens of body parts and tissue samples were found in his facility.
Making matters worse, in many cases, in authorized and non-authorized autopsies, body parts were kept for the professor’s collection and not buried in accordance to halacha. Internal organs were not placed back in a body, but kept for his collection and experiments.
If this story is true, then there is only one word that can describe this fellow: He is a pig! And he deserves to be fired. According to YWN there were unsuccessful attempts to do that in the past. That’s too bad. I don’t think good and decent people should tolerate a man like this any more than they tolerate burning dumpsters.
As Mayor Lupolianski said:
There is a group of extremist secular and haredi elements who together are completely irresponsibly intent on inciting the city. I am informing and promising you that in the future as well I will do my best to protect a united, sane and moderate Jerusalem, the status quo, and that I will not allow such a farce to happen again.
To this I say an unqualified Amen. This is a man we can all look to for leadership.