Thursday, April 06, 2006

Holy Corruption! Rabbis who file for moral bankruptcy

JERUSALEM, April 4 (JTA) — With scandal threatening the tenure of one of the top rabbis, some Israelis are asking whether Israel’s Chief Rabbinate is needed.

In a move unprecedented in the Jewish state, Attorney General Menachem Mazuz issued a public call Monday for the Ashkenazi chief rabbi, Yona Metzger, to resign.

Mazuz, an anti-corruption crusader, cited suggestions that Metzger illicitly accepted discounted rates for himself and his family at a luxury Jerusalem hotel during High Holidays in 2003 and 2004. He is also accused of staying at hotels at the taxpayers’ expense despite having been provided with an apartment by the state.

“It would be appropriate if Rabbi Metzger took personal responsibility and decided on his own to step down,” the Justice Ministry said in a six-page statement.

Metzger, 52, denied wrongdoing and vowed to petition the High Court of Justice against Mazuz.

Read the rest of the JTA article


Blogger G-D SQUAD said...

Wow, the JTA has been out to lunch recently. Everything in that article (except for the second sentence) was news like a year ago.

But if it's holy corruption you like, there are much more recent "scandals."

And one of the biggest recent scandals, in my opinion, is the huge sex-slave industry in the State of Israel. Now that's a scandal to report about and to be concerned about.

Thu Apr 06, 05:30:00 PM 2006  
Blogger Rakdannit427 said...

You correctly noted that the second sentence makes the story news. That is the lead of the article. All the information surrounding is needed background information. It doesn't matter when it happened. As long as corruption in the taxpayer-funded Chief Rabbinate contintues, it is news. It's on ongoing story until the injustice ends. Just because you would prefer not to hear it does not declassify its status.

And by that logic... the sex-slave industry in Israel pales in comparison to the genocide in Darfur. So let's not even discuss forced prostitution!

Hell no! The repeated commital of injustices must be eradicated. Especially if they are rabbis! So gay people are not suitable to be rabbis, but apparently crooks are.

Fri Apr 07, 01:15:00 AM 2006  
Blogger Fedora Black said...


There is little that is new in this story. I am no big fan of the Israeli Rabbinate, which is NOT the chief rabbinate of the world, as many Jews seem to think, but lets keep things in perspective.

The article says nothing about the details of the laws that Metzger is said to have broken, so we don't really know why it is so bad that he got a discount. In addition, the police did not have enough evidence to charge him. Under secular law, here in the US and I assume also in Israel, there is no reason to assume that someone is guilty if there is not enough evidence, at least legally.

As for him being morally corrupt, I am not sure that getting a discount violates halacha in any way. As those of you who advocate that pot is kosher know, secular law and halacha don't always agree. Nor does halacha and popular opinion for that matter...

Finally, the chief rabbi is a political figure, a politician like any other. He runs for office and people vote for him. His learning, personal ethics, knowledge of halacha, and fear of heaven have little to do with it. This is perhaps why many Orthodox give the office little credit.

Fri Apr 07, 10:28:00 AM 2006  
Blogger G-D SQUAD said...

rak: Ok, first of all, tell me what was unjust about it. Second, thanks for putting words in my mouth, but I never said I didn't want to hear about it. I implied that it's not news nor is it a scandal. I heard plenty about it when it was news more than a year ago.

And I would say how dare you imply that the sex-slave industry in Israel isn't important. We could discuss Darfur all we want (in fact, one of our contributors is supposedly working on a Darfur story right now, thank you very much), but that doesn't make human slave-traffiking in Israel any less tragic.

Not to escalate things, but...

Ok, actually, probably better not to escalate things. But take a step back and look at what you've said.

We're talking about scandal in Israel, and obviously some "scandal" about a rabbi getting a free stay in a hotel pales in comparison with slavery. S-L-A-V-E-R-Y! Do you understand?! It's not a joke. Like the kind where people are murdered like an old race horse if they turn bad. It's a billion-dollar industry in Israel.

Obviously events in Darfur are tragic too, but what was the relation to Israel? Totally irrelevant to the discussion at hand.

But what do you think?

Fri Apr 07, 04:22:00 PM 2006  

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