Comments to the Presidential Proclamation on Chabad and Education

This was Posted as a Comment – We Are Posting it As a Feature –

NATIONAL EDUCATION AND SHARING DAY, USA

“For members of Chabad, the year is 5781.

This what Brooklyn, NY resident Chaim Levin wrote on Huffington Post about National Education Day in April 2012:

Yesterday was proclaimed “National Education and Sharing Day, USA” in tribute to the late Chabad Lubavitch Rabbi Menachem Schneerson’s birthday. President Obama wrote:

For centuries, the pursuit of knowledge and the cultivation of character have driven American progress and enriched our national life. On Education and Sharing Day, U.S.A., we renew our commitment to these timeless aspirations, and we rededicate ourselves to fostering in our sons and daughters inquiring minds and compassionate hearts.

In a global economy where more than half of new jobs will demand higher education or advanced training, we must do everything we can to equip our children with the tools for success. Their journey begins early, and it demands stewardship from throughout the community — from parents and caregivers who inspire a love of learning to teachers and mentors who guide our children along the path to achievement. Our Nation’s prosperity grows with theirs, and by ensuring every child has access to a world class education, we reach for a brighter future for all Americans...

Reading the President’s proclamation deeply saddened me as I thought about the education I missed out on in the Chabad school Oholei Torah (Educational Institute Oholei Menachem) in Crown Heights. Basic reading, writing, spelling, math, science and history were not part of the curriculum at any of the Chabad schools I attended. My classmates and I did not have access to a world class education.

I have profound respect for the late Rebbe and his legacy. However, I remember very clearly those talks that he gave — the ones we studied every year in elementary school about the unimportance of “secular” (non-religious, formal) education, and the great importance of only studying limmudei kodesh (holy studies). As a result of this attitude, thousands of students were not taught anything other than the Bible throughout our years attending Chabad institutions.

Until this day, Oholei Torah and many other Chabad schools — particularly schools for boys and a few for girls in Crown Heights and in some other places — do not provide basic formal education. It pains me to think of all the the doctors, lawyers and other professionals and leaders that could have come out of these institutions. These institutions have cultivated the character, compassion, cooperation and goodwill the President also speaks of, producing thousands of shluchim (emissaries) for Chabad all over the world. However, that is the goal of such schools; if you do not become an emissary, you fell through the cracks and are not prepared for anything else. The mantra of Oholei Torah, what most people say when asked why they send their kids to such a school is: “That’s what the school wants for their students, and that’s what their parents want; they hope for their kids to become emissaries of the Rebbe.”

The big question remains unanswered though: What happens to all of us whose futures do not involve becoming emissaries? The majority of students do not go on to become emissaries and lack even a basic formal education, and, hence, the brighter future the President refers to is difficult to reach. As I attempt to make up for a lack of education in anything other than the Bible and a language not relevant to the workplace, I have more and more questions about how such a harmfully unbalanced educational system still exists.

Four and half thousand people have become emissaries, a few people have managed to go on to college and a few Chabad schools do include formal non-religious curricula. Many people within the community of Crown Heights still rigorously defend Oholei Torah, excusing the failings of the school by pointing to the “many success stories.” Yet, they fail to notice the largest crowd, those of us who have been ignored, who miss and always will miss the basic education that the President extols.

In honor of National Education and Sharing Day, we should examine whether we are doing everything we can to equip our children for success. Failure to provide basic formal education cripples children within Chabad communities. We cannot ignore the harm done, and I refuse to remain silent. By opening discussion on education, we risk only improving the Chabad community and honoring the Rebbe’s humanitarian legacy as an advocate for youth.

On National Education and Sharing Day, I hope we all reach for a brighter future for everyone and strive for schools that cultivate not only character, compassion, cooperation and goodwill, but basic education and tools for success. As we celebrate Passover and overcoming the chains that held us back, I hope we reflect also on things things that keep us from personal freedom today.”

While No One is Paying Attention US President Trump is… – Chabad and Ukraine and Education – Part I

The Presidential Orders That Have the Greatest Impact Worldwide are Being Signed While the Rest of Us are Worried About Covid-19, and the President…

Edited 4.5.20

On April 3, 2020, under the cloak of education, virtues and values, President Donald Trump honored the seventh Chabad Rabbi who died in 1994. Some within the  Chabad-Lubavitcher,  Rabbi Menachem Mendel Schneerson, who some believe to have been the founder of today’s Chabad spiritual teachings.

In affixing his signature to the proclamation below, President Trump told young Chabad children that the United States does not actually value their education at all. In so doing, under the laughable guise of virtues, President Trump spat in the faces of young boys who suffered abuse around the world within the Chabad movement. The abuse hidden by Chabad in Australia sparked an entire Royal Commission and an award to one of many victims, Manny Waks, for his suffering.  Chabad is embroiled in numerous  investigations in the United States for the abuse of children in their Yeshivas. The President does not seem to care. While no one was looking he sent a message to his religious followers that the United States values religion over all else, even when that religion is threatening the very threads of American democracy and the separation of church and state.

On April 3, 2020, while everyone was distracted with Covid-19, President Trump repaid those who helped him get elected in spades. Commuting the sentence of Shalom Rubashkin was apparently not enough.  For his  religious supporters, President Trump gave legitimacy to the non-education of children by way of a Presidential Education Honor. The irony is like a punch in the gut. It is laughable, were it not so utterly ignorant, misguided and devoid of any notion of reality.

Which little birds were whispering in his ear?

Continue reading

The Crown Heights, New York Covid-19 Catastrophe and Government’s Leading by Example…. to a deadly virus

The Situation in Crown Heights is a Catastrophe and Trump was the Leader the Rabbis Followed

Dear Readers:

This post has been edited.

We will be posting a series of articles on Covid-19 and the Crown Heights, New York catastrophe. People are in critical condition in disproportionate numbers. Death rates are uncertain.

The members of the Crown Heights community believed what they were told by the Federal Government, and what the response was of their rabbis, namely that Covid-19 was being overblown. In turn, they attended Purim parties and Simchas (happy occasions) which were breeding grounds for transmission of the virus from one person to another. Crown Heights is crowded. They live multiple generations in one home. This is a Petri-dish environment and the people should have been warned accordingly.  

We are posting articles from a number of sources, none of which likely supports this site. In particular, we do not have the permission of CrownHeights.info to reprint the Tehillim List in full, or of Collive to reprint their photographs or their documents. We hope they will understand that we are doing so in good faith and in an effort to spread a message, not one of hate, but one of compassion and care. If asked to remove their references, we will oblige without question.

We encourage you to look to CrownHeights.info and to Collive for information on Covid-19 and on the Crown Heights response. In the event that any sources would prefer we not repost, we ask that they send an email to the gmail account and we will do as asked. Again, we are posting respectfully. 

The Chabad of Crown Heights and other Hasidim of Brooklyn supported in huge numbers the election of President Trump and those he chose to surround himself with as his advisers and government officials. The community of Crown Heights in large proportion took President Trump’s “lead by example” approach and his decision to be flippant with Corona was passed on to the elders within Crown Heights who were then, flippant with the virus as were their children.

As a result, the community of Chabad in Crown Heights and of other Hasidic groups in Brooklyn are testing positive in disproportionate numbers. In Crown Heights they are critically ill disproportionately. They need help. They need medical assistance. They need compassion and they are asking for prayers.

Out of respect, we will post the list for Tehilim first, and then a number of articles regarding the catastrophic situation in Crown Heights. If you would like someone added to the list, please call the number listed on their site

To have a name added to this list, please email news@crownheights.info, or whatsapp us at 718-285-8000. If a person on this list no longer requires Tehillim be said for them, please notify us as well.

Continue reading

UK Gov. Press Release – Chabad UK and 7 Charities Laundering Money with Fake Meds.- DO NOT DONATE!

Press release

“Unscrupulous pattern of dishonesty” at 8 charities used to launder proceeds of crime from the sale of counterfeit medication

Individuals disqualified following regulator’s inquiry into Chabad UK and 7 linked charities

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Chabad UK is a separate charity to Chabad Lubavitch UK (registered charity 227638); the class inquiry is not connected to it or any other Chabad organisations.

The Charity Commission is considering its options around the recovery of charity funds as it reports on its inquiry into Chabad UK and 7 linked charities. Two trustees have been removed and disqualified from their positions, and the manager of the charities automatically disqualified, after he was convicted of laundering money through the charities from the sale of counterfeit medication, and supplying false information to the Commission.

The regulator worked closely with the Metropolitan Police throughout its investigation into the charities that were registered to advance the Orthodox Jewish faith and relieve poverty. Information supplied by the inquiry allowed the manager to be convicted of an offence under section 60 of the Charities Act for providing false or misleading information to the Commission.

The inquiry found that:

  • Over £9 million passed through the charities’ bank accounts between January 2012 and May 2014, however most of the charities’ annual returns to the Commission declared nil income or expenditure.
  • Over £60,000 was paid out of the charities’ bank accounts to a trustee between 2007 and 2015.
  • The trustees failed to meet their statutory reporting requirements.

These failings were a clear breach of the trustees’ duties and amounted to serious mismanagement and/or misconduct in the administration of the charities.

A number of the charities’ bank accounts are currently restrained by a court order under the Proceeds of Crime Act. The Commission is considering its options in relation to the recovery of funds and will ensure that, where possible, any charitable donations recovered are applied in accordance with the charitable objects to which they were initially given.

Amy Spiller, Head of Investigations Team at the Charity Commission, said:

This case involved an unscrupulous pattern of dishonesty that has no place in charity. Charity represents the best of human characteristics – that’s why the behaviour of those involved in charities matter.

These charities were clearly misused for personal gain, and I am pleased that we have been able to work closely with the police to ensure that those responsible have been brought to justice.

The report of the inquiry is available on GOV.UK.

Ends.

Notes to editors:

  1. The charities involved in the inquiry were: Chabad UK (registered charity 1118547), Havenpoint Limited (291213), Pikuach Nefesh Limited (1115619), Worldwide Hatzala Ltd (1115623), Ozer Dalim Limited (1118537), Mamosh Worldwide Limited (1118730), Or Simcha (1119522) and Havenpoint Worldwide (1122120).
  2. The charities remain registered as the Commission is still considering its options in relation to the recovery of funds; the Commission will consider their removal once this process has concluded.
  3. Chabad UK is a separate charity to Chabad Lubavitch UK (registered charity 227638); the class inquiry is not connected to it or any other Chabad organisations.
  4. The Commission is the independent regulator of charities in England and Wales. To find out more about our work read the about us page on GOV.UK.

Press office

Published 16 March 2020

Crown Heights Class Photo – Chabad Emissaries

rabbis
Nearly 5,000 rabbis from around the world met in Crown Heights for an annual conference — and a group photo.

THOUSANDS OF RABBIS GATHER FOR ‘CLASS PHOTO’ AT CROWN HEIGHTS SYNAGOGUE

Thousands of rabbis from around the world descended on Crown Heights on Sunday for an annual conference of Orthodox Jewish Hasidic leaders — and a “class picture” of nearly 5,000 rabbis, who gathered in Brooklyn around their shared faith.

“It’s important for me to meet my friends, to strengthen my work, and do what God wants us to do,” said Rabbi Shalom Ber Sudak of London, England. “We want to encourage people to be close to the Yiddishchite, to be happy with what we are supposed to do.”

The rabbis flew in from across the globe for the International Conference of Chabad-Lubavitch Emissaries — a yearly event designed to strengthen Jewish awareness and practice around the world, said one religious leader.

“I was invited, and have been coming for 50 years,” added Rabbi Joseph Hardman of Israel.  “I represent 6,000 [disciples] that I’m here for. I’m very veshtatum — meaning I’m very satisfied here because they always make us feel welcome.”

To continue reading click here.

Kol V’Oz – Preventing Child Sexual Abuse in the Global Jewish Community

Special Thanks to the Contributor of this Newsletter

 

Dear Lost Messiah,
I’m delighted to announce that Kol v’Oz has been granted Core Participant status in the forthcoming investigation into the UK Jewish community by the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse (IICSA). This means that Kol v’Oz and I will be an active part of the Inquiry and will be able to testify, ask questions of witnesses, make submissions, among other benefits. A public hearing will be held in March 2020.

Those of you who followed the monumental Australian Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse would be aware of the significant positive impact this continues to have both in the broader Australian society and more specifically in the Jewish community. We hope and expect this to also be the case in the UK.

I would like to take this opportunity to encourage anyone who has been sexually abused within a Jewish institution in the UK to contact IICSA to share your story. Please feel free to contact me as well (or alternatively, if contacting IICSA is an issue). Please also contact me if you have any information regarding cover-ups and/or intimidation within any UK Jewish institution.

Our colleagues at Migdal Emunah have also received Core Participant status – please feel free to contact them as well. We will continue to work together with Migdal Emunah to ensure the Inquiry is well-equipped to investigate the Jewish community properly and to ultimately make appropriate recommendations to ensure justice is achieved for victims/survivors of child sexual abuse and to ensure the safety of our children today and into the future.

Please share the above information with anyone you think may be interested.

Obviously there are costs to participate in the Inquiry – and for our work more broadly – so if you’re in a position to support us financially, please do so by clicking here. There are tax deductible options available in the US and in Israel. We’re currently working on an Australian option as well. Thank you in advance!

As always, I’ve shared below a range of relevant material.

On this Tisha b’Av, I’d like to share a Kinah from a survivor of child sexual abuse.

Warmest,

Manny Waks
Chief Executive Officer

Debbie Wiener is the former Chair of the now-defunct The Jewish Taskforce Against Family Violence. This organisation has caused damage to many in the Jewish community. It has recently come to my attention that Debbie is on the board of a new Jewish organisation that deals with another vulnerable group of people. I feel compelled to protect this group by sharing publicly relevant information.
Israel Police has recommended to charge Deputy Health Minister, Rabbi Yaakov Litzman, in the Malka Leifer case. Click: i24YnetThe Jerusalem PostThe Sydney Morning HeraldThe Jewish ChronicleJ-WireThe Australian Jewish News
In response to the latest sexual scandal involving Chabad, I wrote an oped titled Chabad – a law unto itself. Subsequently, there was a further allegation in the same case, which ultimately prompted the Chabad rabbi to resign from his Rabbinic post (but not as director).
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Some quotes from a 2008 article, soon after Adass purchased plane tickets for Malka Leifer to evade justice immediately after allegations of child sexual abuse were made against her:

[Adass spokesperson Norman] Rosenbaum said it was “categorically just not true” that the school purchased Leifer’s ticket to Israel after she resigned amid still unconfirmed rumours that she behaved inappropriately toward students.

He denied the school had tried to cover up allegations, and said “the school has not yet received any complaints”.

And a quote from a 2017 article:

The group then told Leifer she would be stood down as the head of the Adass school. But then, in a fateful decision, it was agreed that rather than report Leifer to the police, the principal should be spirited out of the country.

Rosenbaum was reportedly a part of the decision-making group.

All those at Adass who were involved in the cover-up in any way must be held to full account – for justice and to ensure the safety of children today.

The one-year look-back window for New York victims and survivors to sue their abusers or the institutions where the abuse took place commences on 14 August 2019. This was part of the New York Child Victims’ Act, which recently came into effect. We are proud to have been part of a broad coalition, over many years, who successfully lobbied for the archaic laws to change – in spite of fierce opposition from the Catholic Church, the ultra-Orthodox community and others. We encourage everyone who feels they can pursue some semblance of justice to do so. Please ensure to obtain proper legal advice. Click here for additional information.
More hypocrisy from David Werdiger…

Werdiger’s ‘thought of the week’ to members of JBD – Jews of the (Melbourne) CBD tells readers of Hasidic teachings about the power of words which can be used to ‘hurt and to deceive’. Werdiger is especially concerned about ’choos(ing) our words even more carefully’ when it comes to social media.

Yet an independent IT report has found that Werdiger, through Objectivewear Pty Ltd, a Company of which he was a Director and Shareholder, was behind the infamous anonymous blog site ‘The Fifth Chelek’ which was highlighted at the Australian Royal Commission for its anonymous attacks against victims of child sexual abuse, their families and supporters. This blog played a key role in the demonisation of victims/survivors and creating the culture that inspired it.

To date, Werdiger has failed to accept responsibility for his involvement with this blog. Nevertheless, he has continued to preach on the Jewish perspective of using words carefully, decried the fact that because of social media ‘things people have written years or decades ago (privately or publicly) are hauled out to haunt them’ and the closest he has come to an apology is ‘acknowledging that there are things that I have said or done in the past that I would not say or do now’. He has also sought to play a leadership role in reshaping the Constitution of the Yeshivah Centre, notwithstanding his role in the events which led to the Royal Commission and the restructuring of the Yeshivah Centre.

And to be clear, this was not Werdiger’s only infraction.

It’s important for victims/survivors to hold to account those who have wronged them, especially when they continue to preach shamelessly. It’s important to us for the public to know that Werdiger, among others, is a hypocrite.