Archive for the ‘Rabbi Yona Metzger’ Category

"In the East, all our ‘anti-Semites’ sit in prison”

November 4, 2010

I have difficulty commiserating with the benefactors of the rape of Russia. Expect ‘relations with our Jewish brothers’ to become even cruder.

Ukrainian billionaire and Jewish philanthropist Igor Kolomoisky, left, raises a vodka toast with Israeli Chief Rabbi Yona Metzger, drinking, at Berlin’s Chabad center during a conference of the European Council of Jewish Communities, Oct. 25, 2010. (Berlin Chabad)

Like NBA’s Nets, European Jewish group gets an oligarch, but some see Soviet-style takeover

Uriel Heilman – JTA

November 2, 2010

BERLIN (JTA) — Two Jewish billionaires who came to Berlin from Ukraine last week for a conference on European Jewish life skipped out on the gathering during a session on the global financial crisis.

Instead they were downing vodka shots with Israel’s chief rabbi in the basement of Berlin’s gleaming Chabad center.

One of the two billionaires, banking magnate Igor Kolomoisky, who with $2 billion in assets ranks No. 488 on Forbes magazine’s 2010 list of the world’s richest people, had just been named the new president of the host organization, the European Council of Jewish Communities. He was awarded the position after committing to give the organization an annual multimillion-euro gift for five years — at least $14 million.

Depending on whom one talked to, the appointment was either a generous lifeline to a cash-strapped organization focused on social welfare and education or a hostile takeover of a group with an important-sounding name.

The problem was that Kolomoisky had not been elected but appointed unilaterally by the organization’s outgoing president, Jonathan Joseph, who had met Kolomoisky for the first time earlier that day. Joseph defended his sudden decision as justified by the size of Kolomoisky’s gift — and by the need to respond to a man who might not be inclined to wait for an official vote from the board of directors.

“If we were going to do business together, we had to do business now,” Joseph told JTA, explaining why he skipped the “niceties of the procedures of the ECJC.” Joseph said, “It’s a good opportunity for him; it’s a good opportunity for us.”

The appointment was celebrated with a dinner of foie gras and braised duck for some 150 people at Berlin’s swankiest hotel, the Adlon — paid for by Kolomoisky, according to Joseph.

But the few board members from the social welfare organization who were present at the dinner found the turn of events jarring.

“This is not a democratic process,” Arturo Tedeschi, an EJCJ board member from Italy, told JTA. “It took place like a Soviet-style takeover.”

Tedeschi and four other board members subsequently resigned. Days later the Italian Union of Jewish Communities withdrew from ECJC.

It wasn’t just the undemocratic nature of the appointment that rankled board members and raised eyebrows here. The appointment also touched the nerve of East-West tensions simmering just beneath the surface of European Jewish life.

For decades, Eastern European and Russian Jewish communities were beneficiaries of the West’s largesse, and in the early years of post-Communist life they were rebuilt by American, Israeli and Western European Jews who did everything from pay for their meals to show them how to pray in synagogue.

Now, two decades since the fall of communism and with Western Jewish institutions mired in financial woes, Jews from the former Soviet Union — oligarchs who made their fortunes as capitalism emerged from the Soviet collapse — are swooping in to take over the leadership of several key European Jewish organizations.

Some view this as a positive development, a rescue from the East. While Western Jewish donors are tired and overextended, the philanthropists from the East are energetic and looking to give, Joseph said.

“They may dress funny and drink too much, but they’re sharp,” Joseph said. “They haven’t been rubbed down and made dull yet.”

Others view the changes more ominously, questioning the motives of the philanthropists from the East — businessmen for whom political connections come in handy.

“Now they have a little toy with which they can go around and say this is the opinion of European Jews,” said Bianca Tedeschi, who came to the conference from Italy with her husband, Arturo. “It’s very scary.”

Joseph defended Kolomoisky.

“His reputation, which we checked out, is a very, very good one,” Joseph said. “Yes, he has commercial disputes, but so does every businessman. His integrity is excellent.”

The ECJC is hardly the first such organization to become the pet project of a Russian-speaking oligarch.

In 2007, computer and agrochemical giant Moshe Kantor, No. 773 on the Forbes list with a net worth of $1.3 billion, was elected president of the European Jewish Congress. Alexander Mashkevitch, a Kazakh who has appeared on Forbes’ lists and is in the metals and gas businesses, heads the Euro-Asian Jewish Congress. Ukrainian Vadim Rabinovitch, another oligarch and media mogul, is a vice president of the ECJC.

It’s not just happening in the Jewish world. Russian Jewish tycoon Roman Abramovitch bought Britain’s venerated Chelsea soccer team in 2003. Last year, Russian billionaire Mikhail Prokhorov purchased the NBA’s New Jersey Nets.

But while Prokhorov’s purchase of the Nets was widely applauded (the basketball team, which last year nearly compiled the worst record in NBA history, could use some cash and a change of direction), the infusion of Easterners into Western Jewish organizations has not been universally cheered.

“We will not be colonized by a Ukrainian, that’s for sure,” one ECJC board member said at the parley in Berlin.

East-West tensions were evident throughout the conference, which drew not only Jewish organizational leaders from throughout Europe but several Israeli officials — including Education Minister Gidon Sa’ar and Ashkenazi Chief Rabbi Yona Metzger — and the executive vice-president of the Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations, Malcolm Hoenlein.

The East-West resentment runs both ways — something Rabinovitch, the other oligarch who was pouring vodka shots at Chabad in Berlin — acknowledged in a speech at the conference.

“Sometimes we look at each other and we seem to be afraid of each other,” Rabinovitch said of Eastern and Western European Jews at the session, to which he showed up clad in jeans, a long-sleeved T-shirt and a baseball cap (everyone else wore jackets and ties). “We’re now more active. We’re really taking steps forward.”

Many in the East view Western Europeans as timid and ineffectual, unwilling to stand up unabashedly for Israel and against anti-Semitism. Lamenting that fact, Rabinovitch recalled how, in Ukraine, “We found anti-Semitic organizations and terminated them.”

“It’s different in Western Europe — there are legal problems,” Rabinovitch said. “In the East, all our anti-Semites sit in prison.”

Eastern European Jewish officials also complain of a paternalistic attitude from the West that’s no longer appropriate now that Eastern Jewish communities have come into their own after decades of communist suppression of Jewish life.

“We’re ready to be an integrated part of the international Jewish community,” said Dmitry Maryasis, director of the Moscow office of the Euro-Asian Jewish Congress.

In Western Europe, however, the emerging Jewish leaders from the East often are seen as uncultured, undignified and of questionable backgrounds. Some Jewish oligarchs have been arrested or linked with shady business dealings.

Leonid Nevzlin, a billionaire who once managed Russia’s largest energy company, Yukos, and is now a major Jewish philanthropist living in Israel, was convicted in 2008 by a Russian court of organizing five murders. Nevzlin, in absentia, dismissed the judgment as a politically motivated farce.

In September, Mashkevitch was caught aboard a luxury yacht stopped by the Turkish authorities for allegedly hosting an orgy with high-end prostitutes. Mashkevitch says he was not involved with the prostitution ring and was not arrested.

In one widely discussed incident, Kantor reportedly presented German Chancellor Angela Merkel with a bar of soap when they met several years ago to remind her of what the Nazis did to their Jewish victims as they were ushered into the gas chambers.

“They’re like loose canons; they’re not really answerable to anyone,” said Susy Stone, who came to the ECJC conference from London. “The Jewish community needs a little more levelheadedness.”

http://www.jta.org/news/article/2010/11/02/2741555/like-nbas-nets-european-jewish-group-gets-an-oligarch-but-some-see-soviet-takeover

The True ‘Spirit of Assisi’ Unveiled

September 8, 2009

‘Dialogue’ and the ‘Spirit of Assisi’ under the ‘Noahide’ rainbow.

http://www.santegidio.org/index.php?&idLng=1064

http://www.santegidio.org/downloads/cracovia_en.pdf

One important event will be a pilgrimage, unprecedented in size and representation, to the Auschwitz-Birkenau death camp, on September 8. This will serve as a sign of reconciliation and peace and a symbol of a radical rejection of violence and war as a way of solving international conflicts.

The program will begin with an inaugural Mass tomorrow, presided by Cardinal Dziwisz at the Divine Mercy Shrine. In the afternoon, there will be an Inaugural Assembly in the Auditorium ‘Maximum’ of Krakow. On September 7, there will be 22 round-table discussions in various parts of the city, which will address various themes including: Do Not Forget Auschwitz; the Legacy of John Paul II; Latin America in a Globalized World; Religions and the Challenge of Materialism; Dialogue of Faith and Culture; Faiths in Asia: Building a World Without Violence; Africa, Land of Opportunity; Religions and Global Health of the World: the Rebirth of Africa; The Power of Prayer Over History; Faith and Science.” The final day, September 8, in the morning there will be a Silent March to the gas chambers of the concentration camp at Birkenau and a Memorial Ceremony at the International Monument to the Victims of Nazi-fascism. In the afternoon, following the prayer encounters at various sites, the various religious communities will meet for a Peace Procession that will make its way to Market Square, where the closing ceremony will be held.

http://www.indcatholicnews.com/news.php?viewStory=14765

Auschwitz sanctified again, Sept 8, 2009.

Also see:

Rome Hosts Conference on “The Contribution of Judaism to Our Contemporary World.”

Religious Leaders are Playing a Game

The REAL Hidden Dangers of the Rainbow

Lying Rabbi of the Wailing Wall Insists Pope Remove Pectoral Cross

March 19, 2009
“The Christians are idolaters, and Sunday is their holiday…” (Maimonides, Mishneh Torah, Avodah Zorah, 9;4)

“The Christians are worshipers of Avodah Zarah [idolatry]” (Maimonides, Mishneh Torah, Ma’akhalot Assurot, 11:7)

For the “elder brother” rabbis, maintaining their deception of Christians while remaining true to their traditions of hatred for Jesus Christ and Christian symbols is a thorny matter. The Wailing Wall Rabbi, Shmuel Rabinovitch, who is often seen in photos of world leaders prostrating themselves at the wall in Jerusalem, will ultimately defer to the Chief Rabbinate on how to deal with the Pope’s pectoral cross. A story of how Israeli Chief Rabbi Yona Metzger handled a JPII pectoral cross conundrum in 2005 can be read here:

A Heartwarming Elder Brother Tale

In 2000, when JPII made his visit to the Wailing Wall, Judaism was not at its present level of ascendancy. Rabbi Rabinovitch didn’t cause a commotion over JPII’s pectoral cross as he has during recent visits from bishops and in anticipation of the upcoming Benedict XVI visit. Now, Judaism is much stronger in the Israeli state and around the world and its dispensational component laid out by Maimonides in the Mishneh Torah and in other rabbinic texts is coming into play. Not only is Rabbi Rabinovitch attempting to prevent Benedict XVI from wearing his pectoral cross, he’s also brazenly lying in an attempt to blot out the indisputable fact that JPII wore his pectoral cross at the Western Wall in 2000 to make it appear as if there’s no change in his current stance which is a move closer towards rabbinic mandates on “idolatry.”

When one of Rabbi Rabinovitch’s superior rabbis decides for him how this matter should be handled the decision will be based in Maimonides’ code of situation ethics: if upholding the true mandates of Judaism pertaining to Christian “idolaters” and their “idols” threatens to cause “The Jews” to be viewed badly or suffer hostility then it’s permissible to make an exception. But the fact that the matter is now open for discussion is a clear sign that the momentum is towards the rabbinic ideal.

Jerusalem Rabbi Insists the Pope Must Hide His Cross

March 19,2009

Tim McGirk – Time

… Even though the Vatican says it has received no formal request for the Pope to remove his golden crucifix during his visit to the Wall, Rabbi Rabinovitch’s comments are bound to raise tensions on the eve of the trip. Israel’s Foreign Ministry tried to smooth the waters by saying in a statement that “in accordance with rules of hospitality and dignity,” the State of Israel will not prevent the Pope from wearing his cross when he visits the Western Wall.

But it is the rabbis rather than the government who hold sway at the Western Wall, and Rabbi Rabinovitch has twice previously turned away Christian delegations. In November 2007 he refused to let Austrian bishops near the wall after they would not remove or conceal their crosses, and in May 2008 he refused a request from a group of Irish bishops and prelates to visit the site. “They wanted to wear their crosses openly,” Rabinovitch says …

Explaining the intensity of feeling over the quintessential symbol of Christianity, Rabbi Ron Kronish, director of the Interreligious Coordinating Council in Israel, a Jerusalem group promoting religious dialogue, says that there exists among ultra-Orthodox Jews “a certain allergy towards the cross.” Asking the Pope to remove his cross, he says, is “part of the ongoing paranoia of Jewish history …”

Rabinovitch was in charge of the Western Wall during the visit of the late Pope John Paul II in 2000, when the pontiff prayed and twisted a written message into the cracks of the ancient stones, observing the Jewish belief that all prayers made at the Wall are answered. Rabbi Rabinovitch insists that John Paul II did not wear a visible crucifix during his visit to the site, but photographs taken during that visit clearly show the Polish Pope wearing his familiar golden cross as he touched the wall, head bowed …

It’s possible that the fuss over the Pope’s cross will blow over before Benedict arrives, since Rabinovitch’s edict could be overruled by Israel’s two chief rabbis [Yona Metzger and Shlomo Amar], who are more politically attuned to the questions of the country’s international image …

full article:

http://www.time.com/time/world/article/0,8599,1886525,00.html

also see:

“Elder Brothers in the Faith” Hate the Central Symbol of our Faith

Amalek, Haman, and Christians

Ethnic Ashkenazim Against Zionist Israel: Dr Jim West: Maybe They Would Like to be Spit On Too…

Lying Rabbi of the Wailing Wall Insists Pope Remove Pectoral Cross

March 19, 2009
“The Christians are idolaters, and Sunday is their holiday…” (Maimonides, Mishneh Torah, Avodah Zorah, 9;4)

“The Christians are worshipers of Avodah Zarah [idolatry]” (Maimonides, Mishneh Torah, Ma’akhalot Assurot, 11:7)

For the “elder brother” rabbis, maintaining their deception of Christians while remaining true to their traditions of hatred for Jesus Christ and Christian symbols is a thorny matter. The Wailing Wall Rabbi, Shmuel Rabinovitch, who is often seen in photos of world leaders prostrating themselves at the wall in Jerusalem, will ultimately defer to the Chief Rabbinate on how to deal with the Pope’s pectoral cross. A story of how Israeli Chief Rabbi Yona Metzger handled a JPII pectoral cross conundrum in 2005 can be read here:

A Heartwarming Elder Brother Tale

In 2000, when JPII made his visit to the Wailing Wall, Judaism was not at its present level of ascendancy. Rabbi Rabinovitch didn’t cause a commotion over JPII’s pectoral cross as he has during recent visits from bishops and in anticipation of the upcoming Benedict XVI visit. Now, Judaism is much stronger in the Israeli state and around the world and its dispensational component laid out by Maimonides in the Mishneh Torah and in other rabbinic texts is coming into play. Not only is Rabbi Rabinovitch attempting to prevent Benedict XVI from wearing his pectoral cross, he’s also brazenly lying in an attempt to blot out the indisputable fact that JPII wore his pectoral cross at the Western Wall in 2000 to make it appear as if there’s no change in his current stance which is a move closer towards rabbinic mandates on “idolatry.”

When one of Rabbi Rabinovitch’s superior rabbis decides for him how this matter should be handled the decision will be based in Maimonides’ code of situation ethics: if upholding the true mandates of Judaism pertaining to Christian “idolaters” and their “idols” threatens to cause “The Jews” to be viewed badly or suffer hostility then it’s permissible to make an exception. But the fact that the matter is now open for discussion is a clear sign that the momentum is towards the rabbinic ideal.

Jerusalem Rabbi Insists the Pope Must Hide His Cross

March 19,2009

Tim McGirk – Time

… Even though the Vatican says it has received no formal request for the Pope to remove his golden crucifix during his visit to the Wall, Rabbi Rabinovitch’s comments are bound to raise tensions on the eve of the trip. Israel’s Foreign Ministry tried to smooth the waters by saying in a statement that “in accordance with rules of hospitality and dignity,” the State of Israel will not prevent the Pope from wearing his cross when he visits the Western Wall.

But it is the rabbis rather than the government who hold sway at the Western Wall, and Rabbi Rabinovitch has twice previously turned away Christian delegations. In November 2007 he refused to let Austrian bishops near the wall after they would not remove or conceal their crosses, and in May 2008 he refused a request from a group of Irish bishops and prelates to visit the site. “They wanted to wear their crosses openly,” Rabinovitch says …

Explaining the intensity of feeling over the quintessential symbol of Christianity, Rabbi Ron Kronish, director of the Interreligious Coordinating Council in Israel, a Jerusalem group promoting religious dialogue, says that there exists among ultra-Orthodox Jews “a certain allergy towards the cross.” Asking the Pope to remove his cross, he says, is “part of the ongoing paranoia of Jewish history …”

Rabinovitch was in charge of the Western Wall during the visit of the late Pope John Paul II in 2000, when the pontiff prayed and twisted a written message into the cracks of the ancient stones, observing the Jewish belief that all prayers made at the Wall are answered. Rabbi Rabinovitch insists that John Paul II did not wear a visible crucifix during his visit to the site, but photographs taken during that visit clearly show the Polish Pope wearing his familiar golden cross as he touched the wall, head bowed …

It’s possible that the fuss over the Pope’s cross will blow over before Benedict arrives, since Rabinovitch’s edict could be overruled by Israel’s two chief rabbis [Yona Metzger and Shlomo Amar], who are more politically attuned to the questions of the country’s international image …

full article:

http://www.time.com/time/world/article/0,8599,1886525,00.html

also see:

“Elder Brothers in the Faith” Hate the Central Symbol of our Faith

Amalek, Haman, and Christians

Ethnic Ashkenazim Against Zionist Israel: Dr Jim West: Maybe They Would Like to be Spit On Too…

Israeli Chief Rabbi Thanks Bush for War On Iraq

January 11, 2008

See who benefits from “The Decider’s” decisions:

Chief rabbi thanks Bush for ‘war against Iraq’

By MATTHEW WAGNER, Jerusalem Post

Jan 10, 2008

During a short verbal exchange Wednesday at the Ben-Gurion Airport Terminal, Chief Ashkenazi Rabbi Yona Metzger thanked President George W. Bush for the US’s military intervention in Iraq.

“I want to thank you for your support of Israel and in particular for waging a war against Iraq,” Metzger told Bush, according to the chief rabbi’s spokesman.

Bush reportedly answered that the chief rabbi’s words “warmed his heart” …

… Metzger was chosen as one of the 12 most influential religious figures in the world for a CBS documentary called In God’s Name that appeared at the end of December …

Full article:

http://www.jpost.com/servlet/Satellite?cid=1198517338408&pagename=JPost%2FJPArticle%2FShowFull

Read about warmongering “elder brother,” Rabbi Yona Metzger’s meeting with JPII here:

http://mauricepinay.blogspot.com/2007/11/heartwarming-elder-brother-tale.html

and his warmongering sermon preached from the Vatican pulpit here:

http://mauricepinay.blogspot.com/2007/01/editors-note-just-two-decades-ago.html

.

Israeli Chief Rabbi Thanks Bush for War On Iraq

January 11, 2008

See who benefits from “The Decider’s” decisions:

Chief rabbi thanks Bush for ‘war against Iraq’

By MATTHEW WAGNER, Jerusalem Post

Jan 10, 2008

During a short verbal exchange Wednesday at the Ben-Gurion Airport Terminal, Chief Ashkenazi Rabbi Yona Metzger thanked President George W. Bush for the US’s military intervention in Iraq.

“I want to thank you for your support of Israel and in particular for waging a war against Iraq,” Metzger told Bush, according to the chief rabbi’s spokesman.

Bush reportedly answered that the chief rabbi’s words “warmed his heart” …

… Metzger was chosen as one of the 12 most influential religious figures in the world for a CBS documentary called In God’s Name that appeared at the end of December …

Full article:

http://www.jpost.com/servlet/Satellite?cid=1198517338408&pagename=JPost%2FJPArticle%2FShowFull

Read about warmongering “elder brother,” Rabbi Yona Metzger’s meeting with JPII here:

http://mauricepinay.blogspot.com/2007/11/heartwarming-elder-brother-tale.html

and his warmongering sermon preached from the Vatican pulpit here:

http://mauricepinay.blogspot.com/2007/01/editors-note-just-two-decades-ago.html

.

A Heartwarming Elder Brother Tale

November 9, 2007

Hatred of the cross and classification of its veneration as idolatry, asinine legalism, mercilessness, … that’s our rabbinic “elder brothers in the faith” all right.

… This reminded [Chief Rabbi of “Israel,” Yona Metzger] of one of his last meetings with Pope John Paul II a few years ago and what unfolded as a result of that particular encounter in the Vatican. It was less than a year before the pope passed away and he was rather ill and somewhat infirm. Rabbi Metzger is tall—probably about 6’4″—and he was concerned that he would have to bow his head and lean in to greet the pope and shake his hand. The concern was that as a result of this movement he would be bowing down to the crucifix that hung around the pope’s neck, which would be an act tantamount to bowing to an idol, a halachically prohibited act. He sought the guidance of Rav Yosef Shalom Elyashiv on this matter, and the elderly posek instructed Rabbi Metzger to stand erect and just extend his hand directly to the pope.

At their encounter in Rome, Rabbi Metzger did as instructed, and he related that in fact upon reaching out to the pope, the pope pulled himself up from his chair and bowed forward to welcome Rabbi Metzger … (“Long Beach Magic,” Larry Gordon, November 08, 2007, 5 Towns Jewish Times)

http://www.5tjt.com/news/read.asp?Id=1748

A Heartwarming Elder Brother Tale

November 9, 2007

Hatred of the crucifix and classification of its veneration as idolatry, asinine legalism, mercilessness, … that’s our rabbinic “elder brothers in the faith” all right.

… This reminded [Chief Rabbi of “Israel,” Yona Metzger] of one of his last meetings with Pope John Paul II a few years ago and what unfolded as a result of that particular encounter in the Vatican. It was less than a year before the pope passed away and he was rather ill and somewhat infirm. Rabbi Metzger is tall—probably about 6’4″—and he was concerned that he would have to bow his head and lean in to greet the pope and shake his hand. The concern was that as a result of this movement he would be bowing down to the crucifix that hung around the pope’s neck, which would be an act tantamount to bowing to an idol, a halachically prohibited act. He sought the guidance of Rav Yosef Shalom Elyashiv on this matter, and the elderly posek instructed Rabbi Metzger to stand erect and just extend his hand directly to the pope.

At their encounter in Rome, Rabbi Metzger did as instructed, and he related that in fact upon reaching out to the pope, the pope pulled himself up from his chair and bowed forward to welcome Rabbi Metzger … (“Long Beach Magic,” Larry Gordon, November 08, 2007, 5 Towns Jewish Times)

http://www.5tjt.com/news/read.asp?Id=1748

A Heartwarming Elder Brother Tale

November 9, 2007

Hatred of the cross and classification of its veneration as idolatry, asinine legalism, mercilessness, … that’s our rabbinic “elder brothers in the faith” all right.

… This reminded [Chief Rabbi of “Israel,” Yona Metzger] of one of his last meetings with Pope John Paul II a few years ago and what unfolded as a result of that particular encounter in the Vatican. It was less than a year before the pope passed away and he was rather ill and somewhat infirm. Rabbi Metzger is tall—probably about 6’4″—and he was concerned that he would have to bow his head and lean in to greet the pope and shake his hand. The concern was that as a result of this movement he would be bowing down to the crucifix that hung around the pope’s neck, which would be an act tantamount to bowing to an idol, a halachically prohibited act. He sought the guidance of Rav Yosef Shalom Elyashiv on this matter, and the elderly posek instructed Rabbi Metzger to stand erect and just extend his hand directly to the pope.

At their encounter in Rome, Rabbi Metzger did as instructed, and he related that in fact upon reaching out to the pope, the pope pulled himself up from his chair and bowed forward to welcome Rabbi Metzger … (“Long Beach Magic,” Larry Gordon, November 08, 2007, 5 Towns Jewish Times)

http://www.5tjt.com/news/read.asp?Id=1748