Israel's New Chief Rabbi Makes Racist Remark

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posted on Aug, 1 2013 @ 05:07 AM
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I thought this topic belongs here, but move it to a more appropriate thread if there is one, moderator(s).


The newly elected Ashkenazi Chief Rabbi -- one of the two men who serve as spiritual authorities for the people of Israel -- is already under fire for making an apparently racist remark, several Israeli news outlets are reporting.

David Lau was addressing a group of ultra-orthodox yeshiva students when he made reference to young people who are observed watching basketball on television in public rather than spending time studying the Torah. His argument was meant to illustrate the point that such a display could undermine the case for youths not being drafted into the Israeli Defense Forces. But according to Israeli news outlet Hareetz, Lau went on to use a racial slur to describe some professional basketball players.

"Why do you care whether these [k]ushim [a derogatory Hebrew term for black people] who are paid in Tel Aviv beat the kushim who are paid in Greece?"

But Naftali Bennett, a minister of religious services and economics, reportedly came to Lau's defense, telling the Post that the media shouldn't be stalking public figures and looking for harmful statements.

Basketball is a strong source of pride for many Israelis: President Shimon Peres recently invited Amare Stoudemire of the New York Nicks to play for Israel's national team. However, Tablet Magazine notes that Lau's controversial comment isn't the first ugly incident to publicly surface regarding the treatment of professional basketball players in Israel.

Pini Gershon, a former coach for Maccabi Tel Aviv, was caught on camera in 2000 saying he could tell the difference between the intelligence levels of his players by the color of their skin.


HuffPost: Israel's New Chief Rabbi, David Lau, Accused Of Racism




Similar statements were made by the incoming Sephardi Chief Rabbi Yitzhak Yosef, who in May accused the Treasury of financing “kushim in basketball” at the expense of synagogues and mikvehs.


Jewish Daily Forward: New Chief Rabbi David Lau Makes Racist Remark About Basketball Players


It's also interesting to note that this came up in a discussion of the appearance of draft dodging by ultra-Orthodix Jews in Israel:


Lau also said that yeshiva students who are seen watching television in public harm the ultra-Orthodox community's efforts to avoid blanket draft to the Israel Defense Forces.


Haaretz: Newly elected chief rabbi slammed for 'racist' jibe




Knesset Education and Sports Committee chairman Amram Mitzna (Hatnua) said it was “very unfortunate that rabbis who are supposed to lead the way ethically fail time and time again by making racist statements.”


Jerusalem Post: New chief rabbi widely condemned for racist comments


I don't know Hebrew, but I did some searching on the term "kushim" and it does indeed seem to be an impolite term for black Africans. The fact that members of the Israeli parliament have condemned his remark, and have demanded an apology would suggest that this was indeed an offensive thing to say. In addition, he could have just told the students that watching basketball wasn't as important as studying The Torah, but he had to throw in a gratuitous offensive racial reference as well. That says a whole lot about this guy.

I also find it very telling that one of the two chief Rabbis of Israel said this. It doesn't say a lot for Israeli religious culture or for the attitude of the ruling government, which appointed this racist rabbi as chief rabbi. It is also very telling that a similar statement was made by another prominent rabbi recently.

I also find it very interesting that a government official apologist attempted to defend the good rabbi's words by saying that people shouldn't be stalking public figures and looking for harmful statements. I guess the same could be said of quoting unsavory things by Adolf Hitler, Heinrich Himmler or Joseph Goebbels. And in general, journalists never follow public officials around and quote their unfortunate statements; it just isn't done. The nerve of some journalist to have done this! Have journalists no shame?

I find it quite astounding that an Israeli government spokesperson is attempting to defend this offensive statement by one of Israel's top rabbis. That alone speaks volumes. If this is the way they talk about their own basket ball teams' players, and defend prominent public persons who say such things, is it any wonder how they treat Palestinians?
edit on 1-8-2013 by MrInquisitive because: Added more source links




posted on Aug, 1 2013 @ 05:17 AM
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Apparently 'genetics' is a big thing with the more orthodox or older Jews.
Keeping the Jewish people pure blood or something like that.
(I picture the Slither'in wizards in Harry Potter talking about MudBloods vs PureBloods)
Haaretz
I don't know much about it. But I did find that article which was kinda interesting.



posted on Aug, 1 2013 @ 05:21 AM
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reply to post by FlyersFan
 


Kinda ironic that certain Jewish sects would be into genetics in this manner. One would think that it might bite them in the rear some day -- AGAIN.



posted on Aug, 1 2013 @ 06:09 AM
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Racism has been prevalent in Israel for quite some time, even against Ethiopian Jews, so this Rabbis comment is hardly a surprise.

Threads about Jews saying and doing questionable things don't get the kind of response that is seen in threads about other people saying and doing questionable things. Speaking from experience.



posted on Aug, 1 2013 @ 06:15 AM
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reply to post by FlyersFan
 

reply to post by MrInquisitive
 


Aren't the Ashkenazi opposed to the Party of Zion, the current political leader?



posted on Aug, 1 2013 @ 06:27 AM
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Israelis are as mixed a society as everyone else's and we all have our 'dinosaurs' we could well do without.

I do think that the Torah has some terribly racist teachings which are shameful as its teachings permits dishonour and dishonesty towards all non Jews, so what the Rabbi was saying is something, Jewish people obviously are thinking about in today's world and who they choose as allies.



posted on Aug, 1 2013 @ 06:39 AM
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Originally posted by swanne
reply to post by FlyersFan
 

reply to post by MrInquisitive
 


Aren't the Ashkenazi opposed to the Party of Zion, the current political leader?


I didn't know that the current party in power is the Party of Zion. I thought Netanyahu was the head of Likud and that it is in power, and that he and a large portion of the Israeli Jews are Ashkenazi, i.e. European, Jews.



posted on Aug, 1 2013 @ 06:40 AM
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and ? typical israeli ... it would be news if there was an israeli who DIDNT make any racist remarks ..



posted on Aug, 1 2013 @ 06:48 AM
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Originally posted by Shiloh7
Israelis are as mixed a society as everyone else's and we all have our 'dinosaurs' we could well do without.

I do think that the Torah has some terribly racist teachings which are shameful as its teachings permits dishonour and dishonesty towards all non Jews, so what the Rabbi was saying is something, Jewish people obviously are thinking about in today's world and who they choose as allies.


Look at any of the articles I cited. This rabbi doesn't look that old, and he was just appointed Chief Rabbi of the State of Israel a week before this happened. If he is indeed such a 'dinosaur', why was he appointed? You also apparently didn't see the bit of my OP that said another prominent rabbi recently said a very similar thing. Moreover, defending racist religious officials by saying that they are 'dinosaurs' just doesn't cut it.

There's no excuse for what this rabbi and the other said, and it would seem to show a systematic current of racism in at least a portion of Israeli society -- by the religious leaders no less. Yeah, I know, all societies have racists; but when high religious officials are spouting overtly racist remarks, then this endemic racism is obviously rather prevalent. That these racist rabbis didn't even think their remarks were offensive gives an indication of just how big an issue this is in their society.



posted on Aug, 1 2013 @ 06:50 AM
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No surprise there at all. Thats like being shocked to hear a christian redneck say the N word. Funny though if the black basketball players converts to being jewish he would be genetically just as jewish then askenazi jews today. Oh btw love the new capital city you guys are building kazakhstan.

Is the term kushim a Yiddish or hebrew word?



posted on Aug, 1 2013 @ 07:04 AM
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reply to post by FlyersFan
 


Ummm but they aren't pure themselves. You do know being a jew is just a religion like being a muslim or christian.



posted on Aug, 1 2013 @ 07:08 AM
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reply to post by MrInquisitive
 


To all the commenters saying they aren't shocked by this and/or equating it to red-neck Christians using racial slurs, the difference is that this is one of the two Chief Rabbis of Israel. It's one thing for private individuals to make such slurs, but when they are both high religious leaders and representatives of the state religion, it puts the matter on a much higher (or lower, depending on how one looks at it) plane. This would be like for the Pope, or the Archbishop of Canterbury or Billy Graham to make a public racial slur.

edit on 1-8-2013 by MrInquisitive because: (no reason given)



posted on Aug, 1 2013 @ 07:08 AM
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Originally posted by sk0rpi0n
Racism has been prevalent in Israel for quite some time, even against Ethiopian Jews, so this Rabbis comment is hardly a surprise.

Threads about Jews saying and doing questionable things don't get the kind of response that is seen in threads about other people saying and doing questionable things. Speaking from experience.




That's because while the Jews do have a strong tribal ID that has been know to express itself in such ways, they don't have a history of putting people in gas chambers and ovens. And just listen to OP trying to hide his racism! Like they had something coming....AGAIN he says. Like its ok to stuff some into gas chambers at some point is what he is saying.

Our society still tolerates a fair level of anti Semitic flap while most other forms of social labeling have fallen off considerably.



posted on Aug, 1 2013 @ 07:17 AM
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reply to post by Logarock
 





they don't have a history of putting people in gas chambers and ovens


Well that's killed this thread .....Godwin's law has been invoked
edit on 1-8-2013 by ken10 because: (no reason given)



posted on Aug, 1 2013 @ 07:20 AM
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Originally posted by Logarock

Originally posted by sk0rpi0n
Racism has been prevalent in Israel for quite some time, even against Ethiopian Jews, so this Rabbis comment is hardly a surprise.

Threads about Jews saying and doing questionable things don't get the kind of response that is seen in threads about other people saying and doing questionable things. Speaking from experience.




That's because while the Jews do have a strong tribal ID that has been know to express itself in such ways, they don't have a history of putting people in gas chambers and ovens. And just listen to OP trying to hide his racism! Like they had something coming....AGAIN he says. Like its ok to stuff some into gas chambers at some point is what he is saying.

Our society still tolerates a fair level of anti Semitic flap while most other forms of social labeling have fallen off considerably.


Thanks for calling me a racist. Did you notice the news sources I cited? They aren't neo-Nazi or anti-semetic sites. But I was waiting for the defenders of Zionism, like yourself, to make loathsome attempts at defending these racist statements by these high holy men in Israel. Conratulations on being the first one of this ilk!

And your defense of these guys is that they aren't putting these black basketball players in concentration camps and ovens??? NICE.

And your only other defense of these guys is to launch ad hominem attacks at me, insinuating that I am a racist. NICER STILL. Please tell me what I said that was at all racist.

Your calling this thread "anti-semetic flap"??? NICEST OF ALL. The fact that the chief rabbi of Israel made an offensive remark and hasn't yet even deigned to apologize, is not the issue to you, but rather this is just an attempt to do some 'anti-semetic' smearing, huh? WOW. Talk about mis-playing the race/religion card.

One of my points is that if Jewish Israeli religious leaders are this glib about making racial slurs against blacks, then is it any surprise how they treat the Palestinians? Gaza is essentially a concentration camp, and the IDF uses urban military tactics that were developed by the Waffen SS during the putting down of the Warsaw Ghetto Uprising.
edit on 1-8-2013 by MrInquisitive because: (no reason given)



posted on Aug, 1 2013 @ 07:21 AM
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Originally posted by Shiloh7
Israelis are as mixed a society as everyone else's and we all have our 'dinosaurs' we could well do without.

I do think that the Torah has some terribly racist teachings which are shameful as its teachings permits dishonour and dishonesty towards all non Jews, so what the Rabbi was saying is something, Jewish people obviously are thinking about in today's world and who they choose as allies.



Well there is a context here. When it comes to the Torah they see the keeping of it something of the greatest importance that was committed to their tribe many years ago. In that context they probably don't even consider the Apollo missions to the moon something to be desired over the study of same.



posted on Aug, 1 2013 @ 07:23 AM
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Originally posted by MrInquisitive

Originally posted by Logarock

Originally posted by sk0rpi0n
Racism has been prevalent in Israel for quite some time, even against Ethiopian Jews, so this Rabbis comment is hardly a surprise.

Threads about Jews saying and doing questionable things don't get the kind of response that is seen in threads about other people saying and doing questionable things. Speaking from experience.




That's because while the Jews do have a strong tribal ID that has been know to express itself in such ways, they don't have a history of putting people in gas chambers and ovens. And just listen to OP trying to hide his racism! Like they had something coming....AGAIN he says. Like its ok to stuff some into gas chambers at some point is what he is saying.

Our society still tolerates a fair level of anti Semitic flap while most other forms of social labeling have fallen off considerably.


Thanks for calling me a racist. Did you notice the news sources I cited? They aren't neo-Nazi or anti-semetic sites. But I was waiting for the defenders of Zionism, like yourself, to make loathsome attempts at defending these racist statements by these high holy men in Israel. Conratulations on being the first one of this ilk!

And your defense of these guys is that they aren't putting these black basketball players in concentration camps and ovens??? NICE.


Well what else could "AGAIN" mean. Like they got what was coming to them at the hands of the Germans?
edit on 1-8-2013 by Logarock because: n



posted on Aug, 1 2013 @ 07:30 AM
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Originally posted by MrInquisitive

Originally posted by Logarock

Originally posted by sk0rpi0n
Racism has been prevalent in Israel for quite some time, even against Ethiopian Jews, so this Rabbis comment is hardly a surprise.

Threads about Jews saying and doing questionable things don't get the kind of response that is seen in threads about other people saying and doing questionable things. Speaking from experience.




That's because while the Jews do have a strong tribal ID that has been know to express itself in such ways, they don't have a history of putting people in gas chambers and ovens. And just listen to OP trying to hide his racism! Like they had something coming....AGAIN he says. Like its ok to stuff some into gas chambers at some point is what he is saying.

Our society still tolerates a fair level of anti Semitic flap while most other forms of social labeling have fallen off considerably.




One of my points is that if Jewish Israeli religious leaders are this glib about making racial slurs against blacks, then is it any surprise how they treat the Palestinians? Gaza is essentially a concentration camp, and the IDF uses urban military tactics that were developed by the Waffen SS during the putting down of the Warsaw Ghetto Uprising.
edit on 1-8-2013 by MrInquisitive because: (no reason given)



Now don't sell the readers here short. Everyone could see this is where you were headed right off the bat.



posted on Aug, 1 2013 @ 07:30 AM
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reply to post by MrInquisitive
 




Kinda ironic that certain Jewish sects would be into genetics in this manner. One would think that it might bite them in the rear some day -- AGAIN.


To answer your question, it already has. Dr. Eran Elhaik of Johns Hopkins University and to his associates confirms earlier DNA studies, especially the work of Dr. Ariella Oppenheim of Hebrew University, who likewise found, in 2001, that the “Jews” came from the Khazars rather than the Israelites.

I am sure the Chief Rabbi is very much aware of this as Dr. Elhaik was interviewed by Haaretz. “There are no blood or family connections among the Jews,” said Dr. Elhaik in an interview with Haaretz, Israel’s daily newspaper. “The various groups of Jews in the world today do not share a common genetic origin. Their genome is largely Khazar.”. In short the people of Israel are not the seed, nor the ancestors, of Abraham. They call themselves “Jews,” but in fact, DNA science shows them to be Khazars. They say they are “Jew,” but they are not.

Now this Rabbi is making racial remarks against black basketball players while I have no doubt holding a race card that he has no claim to. Can we say hypocrisy.



posted on Aug, 1 2013 @ 07:35 AM
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Originally posted by Logarock

Well what else could "AGAIN" mean. Like they got what was coming to them at the hands of the Germans?
edit on 1-8-2013 by Logarock because: n


What else could it mean? Let me tell you: for a group that has been subject to extreme racial/religious bigotry -- including violence, of course -- to itself be racist is the height of hypocrisy. The point of saying "AGAIN" is that if they continue their racist/bigoted ways, karma is going to rudely knock on their back door some day. Since this has already happened to them at least once, I use the adverb "again". I made it all caps for ironic emphasis.

Once again, how am I being racist by pointing out the racist hypocrisy of Israeli Jews -- top religious leaders no less -- making racial slurs?





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