NEW YORK (VINnews) — Agudath Israel of America published a letter Monday from the Moetzes Gedolei HaTorah of America strongly criticizing the current Israeli government’s anti-religious actions. The letter called on the Israeli government not to intrude on “the realm of Torah, mitzvos and Jewish education” and called on Jews worldwide to pray for the cancellation of the edicts.
The text of the statement, as translated into English, read as follows:
“We hear cries of pain from our brothers who dwell in Eretz Yisroel as the Israeli government plans decrees that will seriously affect the Torah population there. Examples include:
- desecrating the Kosel HaMaaravi – the last remnant of the Beis Hamikdash and the place from which the Divine Presence has never left – by permitting in it mixed prayer services and desecrations of our holy religious values;
- acting to remove the safeguards for modesty accepted by the chareidi population upon themselves with respect to the use of “kosher” phones;
- spreading Shabbos desecration such as in public transportation and the like;
canceling oversight over kashrus;
- intruding into the education systems of chareidi institutions;
- conspiring to undermine the yeshivos by forcibly conscripting their students;
and, most pressing now, acting towards weakening Jewish identity and holiness by allowing any community the authority to perform conversions. This will result in invalid conversions where the convert does not properly accept upon himself the obligations of Torah and mitzvos.
“The ultimate outcome of all this will be to uproot the Torah from its status as the foundational identity and eternity of the Jewish people, and to turn the Jewish people into a nation like all others.
“We address the Israeli government: You have no right to intrude into the realm of Torah, mitzvos, or Jewish education. These are the pupil of the eye of the Jewish nation. We will object strongly against these plans, just as our ancestors have over the course of history stood against any who have attempted to turn us away from Torah law.
“To the G-d fearing religious public we say: This is a time fraught with danger for the Jewish nation, and we must cry out – from the depths of our hearts – that Hashem save us. We are obligated to increase our tefillah until Hashem awakens a heavenly spirit by which these edicts will be cancelled.
“May it be Hashem’s will that the words, “They shall do no evil nor any destruction in my entire holy land,” (Yeshayah 11:9) speedily be fulfilled, and may we merit the day when the Glory of Hashem fills the world.”
Moetzes Gedolei HaTorah of America