The Coronavirus Has Exposed the Weaknesses of Israeli Ultra-Orthodoxy, but the Only Solution Can Come from Within

Last week, Israeli Ḥaredim rioted in response to efforts to enforce a coronavirus lockdown, throwing stones, blocking roads, and even burning an empty bus. Then on Sunday over 10,000 ḥaredi Jews flooded the streets in the funeral procession for the late sage Meshullam Dovid Soloveitchik; thousands more turned out for the funeral of Rabbi Yitzḥok Scheiner on the same day—despite the fact that Scheiner had condemned such events and urged his followers to adhere strictly to social-distancing regulations. On the floor of the Knesset, Moshe Gafni, the leader of a ḥaredi political party, insisted that his own community was not to blame: “You,” he said, addressing the secular political establishment, “who sent us to live in such crowded conditions, it’s your fault! And you even have the nerve to attack us, when none of this is even true!”

Create a free account to continue reading

Welcome to Mosaic

Create a free account to continue reading and you'll get two months of unlimited access to the best in Jewish thought, culture, and politics

Register

Create a free account to continue reading

Welcome to Mosaic

Create a free account to continue reading and you'll get two months of unlimited access to the best in Jewish thought, culture, and politics

Register

Read more at Tzarich Iyun

More about: Coronavirus, Israeli society, Judaism, Ultra-Orthodox

Why a Government Victory in Southwestern Syria Is Bad News for Israel

Sept. 17 2021

Last week, Russia negotiated a ceasefire between the Syrian government and rebel forces in the city of Daraa, where the initial protests that sparked the uprising against Bashar al-Assad began. The agreement ended a 75-day assault on the city, located near the country’s southwestern border, by Russian, Iranian, and Syrian forces. Jonathan Spyer explains the significance of these events:

Create a free account to continue reading

Welcome to Mosaic

Create a free account to continue reading and you'll get two months of unlimited access to the best in Jewish thought, culture, and politics

Register

Create a free account to continue reading

Welcome to Mosaic

Create a free account to continue reading and you'll get two months of unlimited access to the best in Jewish thought, culture, and politics

Register

Read more at Jonathan Spyer

More about: Golan Heights, Iran, Israeli Security, Russia, Syrian civil war