A New Film Provides an Insiders’ Look at the World of Orthodox Dating

For the past several years, there has been much talk in Orthodox Jewish circles, particularly those that lean haredi, of a shiddukh (matchmaking) crisis. Usually, the crisis boils down to the fact that the supply of eligible women outnumbers that of eligible men. The situation gave its name to a movie, directed by Chaya Gurkov, that premiered earlier this month. Lauren Hakimi writes:

Gurkov, a Brooklyn College graduate and member of the Chabad-Lubavitch community, drew on personal experience to make the film, but invented the characters and dialogue. The film, which is consistently funny and heartwarming, tracks the full life cycle of one woman’s potential shiddukh, or match, from the matchmaker’s recommendation to the (spoiler alert!) proposal, which takes place two months later right outside the Chabad-Lubavitch headquarters in Crown Heights.

Gurkov also said she wanted to combat harmful on-screen stereotypes of Orthodox Jews. “I wanted to create a story that showed that many of us are comfortable in our religion,” she said.

Read more at Shtetl

More about: Film, Jewish marriage, Orthodoxy

The IDF’s First Investigation of Its Conduct on October 7 Is Out

For several months, the Israel Defense Forces has been investigating its own actions on and preparedness for October 7, with an eye to understanding its failures. The first of what are expected to be many reports stemming from this investigation was released yesterday, and it showed a series of colossal strategic and tactical errors surrounding the battle at Kibbutz Be’eri, writes Emanuel Fabian. The probe, he reports, was led by Maj. Gen. (res.) Mickey Edelstein.

Edelstein and his team—none of whom had any involvement in the events themselves, according to the IDF—spent hundreds of hours investigating the onslaught and battle at Be’eri, reviewing every possible source of information, from residents’ WhatsApp messages to both Israeli and Hamas radio communications, as well as surveillance videos, aerial footage, interviews of survivors and those who fought, plus visits to the scene.

There will be a series of further reports issued this summer.

IDF chief Halevi in a statement issued alongside the probe said that while this was just the first investigation into the onslaught, which does not reflect the entire picture of October 7, it “clearly illustrates the magnitude of the failure and the dimensions of the disaster that befell the residents of the south who protected their families with their bodies for many hours, and the IDF was not there to protect them.” . . .

The IDF hopes to present all battle investigations by the end of August.

The IDF’s probes are strictly limited to its own conduct. For a broader look at what went wrong, Israel will have to wait for a formal state commission of inquiry to be appointed—which happens to be the subject of this month’s featured essay in Mosaic.

Read more at Times of Israel

More about: Gaza War 2023, IDF, Israel & Zionism, October 7