Chabad-Lubavitch

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Origins in Russia, Ukraine, Poland

The move to New York

Kahane

Crown Heights - 1991

In 1991, a car accompanying Schneerson's motorcade accidentally struck two Guyanese-American children while attempting to catch up to Schneerson's vehicle. One of the children was killed. The incident triggered the Crown Heights riot.

In Palestine

Safed

Hebron

Cohen writes:

In the nineteenth century, Hebron was the center of Chabad Hasidism in the Holy Land. Most of the members of the sect who lived in Palestine were in Hebron, and they constituted a majority of the city’s Ashkenazi Jewish population. That had not always been the case.
As the Hasidic movement became consolidated in Eastern Europe in the second half of the eighteenth century, small numbers of its devotees began arriving in the Holy Land. In 1777 several of the movement’s leaders arrived there, with a number of followers and hangers-on. Numbering about 200 in all, they settled in the Galilee and established the Hasidic community in the Land of Israel. At the beginning of the nineteenth century, Chabad found itself in conflict with the rest of the Hasidic community for both religious and financial reasons. As a result, some fifteen Chabad families left Safed in the Galilee and settled in Hebron alongside the Sephardi community, which had arrived and integrated itself into the city following the Spanish expulsion in 1492 (Yaari 1960). This took place while the founder and leader of the Chabad movement, Rabbi Schneur Zalman of Liadi, author of the philosophical and mystical work Tanya, was still alive. In the generation that followed, his son and successor, Dov-Ber, known as the Mittler (middle) Rebbe, sent more of his followers to Hebron, and in 1845 his daughter, Menuha Rachel Slonim, arrived and came to be known as the “mother of the Ashkenazi Yishuv in Hebron.” Chabad had become the largest Ashkenazi community in the city. And, as in Europe, it stood at the forefront of the fight against Zionism.[1]

However, its relationship with Zionism was complex and became more so.

To advance the fight against Zionism and maskilim —the advocates of Jewish enlightenment inspired by the secularizing and rational trends in Western European culture —the admor of Chabad ordered, on the eve of World War I, the establishment of a Chabad yeshiva in Hebron —in Hebron and not in Jerusalem (Ratzabi 1996, 84; Landau 1985). The yeshiva opened its doors in 1912 in a building known as the Romano House, after the wealthy Turkish-Jewish family that had built it forty years previously. The family had come on hard times and put the property up for sale. Competition for the house was intense —interested buyers included the house’s Arab neighbors, Christian missionaries, and the Alliance Française, which wanted to open a modern school there. But the Chabad community beat the others and celebrated its victory over the gentiles and, in particular, over Zionist and secular Jewish influence. This brings us back to our core question: if the Jewish community in Hebron opposed Zionism, why were the Arabs so upset?[2]

The Hebron 'massacre'

According to Heilman and Friedman:

When Rabbi Yosef Yitzchak returned in August 1929, he was convinced that Palestine was not going to work out as a place to locate a Temimim yeshiva, since Arab riots had broken out in Hebron on August 23 and 24 in which nearly seventy Jews, among whom were students of the newly established Slobodka Yeshiva in Hebron, were murdered—all this shortly after he had visited this city of the forefathers... Indeed, there were some suggestions that the Lubavitcher rebbe’s visit to Hebron may have been a precipitating factor in the subsequent rioting there... There is no hard evidence that the riots were in reaction to the visit. However, the fact that Rabbi Yosef Yitzchak managed to enter holy places inside the mosque over the burial cave of the patriarchs, which at the time were off-limits for Jewish visitors, and thus jar the status quo in the place would surely have antagonized Muslim zealots in Hebron. The 1929 Arab rioters claimed that their actions were precipitated by what they saw as Jewish efforts to disturb the delicate status quo around holy places in the Holy Land.[3][4]

Schneerson 'departed the Holy Land on Thursday, August 22', a day before violence erupted.[5]

Kfar Chabad

Yitzhar

Itzhak Ginzburg is the head of Od Yosef Chai Yeshiva in Yitzhar, the most extreme rabbinical institution in the West Bank. Officially Ginzburg is a Chabad rabbi, however, most of his followers are known as the “hill dwellers,” young adults of a unique spiritual agenda that combines an ascetic and tough lifestyle with neo-Chassidic tendencies.[6]
Rabbi Yitzhak Shapira, who was detained for questioning by the Shin Bet (Israel Security Agency) in connection with the burning of a mosque in Yasuf, a village near Nablus, is head of the Od Yosef Chai Yeshiva in Yitzhar, and is a disciple of Rabbi Yitzhak Ginsberg, who lives in Kfar Chabad.
Some of the guidelines mentioned at the back of the book in a section entitled "Conclusions - Chapter Five: The Killing of Gentiles in War," include the following: "There is a reason to kill babies [on the enemy side] even if they have not transgressed the seven Noahide Laws [to believe in God, not to commit idolatry, murder, theft or adultery, to set up a legal system, and not to tear a limb from a live animal] because of the future danger they may present, since it is assumed that they will grow up to be evil like their parents."[7]

In the UK

See Chabad-Lubavitch UK

In Ukraine

Involvement in fake antisemitic attacks

Winnipeg

A CBC report, from October 2020, stated that the Chabad community in Los Angeles provided support to a Jewish couple who faked an antisemitic attack on their cafe in Winnipeg, Canada. In April 2019, the Cafe had allegedly been vandalized with anti-Semitic graffiti the night before Passover but 6 days later the Police said that they "believed the whole event was staged and the family members were charged." Records of the trial show that the Cafe had mounting financial pressure but the couple who owned the Cafe denied staging the crime. The defence said that the family had since lost their business and home and were "ostracized in Winnipeg in general and within the Jewish community as well." The family remained in America due to the Covid-19 pandemic. [8]

People

Rebbes

Hebron

Resources

See also

Books and articles

Notes

  1. Cohen, Hillel, 1929: Year Zero of the Arab-Israeli Conflict. Waltham, MA: Brandeis University Press, 2015. p. 137.
  2. Cohen, Hillel, 1929: Year Zero of the Arab-Israeli Conflict. Waltham, MA: Brandeis University Press, 2015. p. 138.
  3. Heilman, S., & Friedman, M. (2010). The Rebbe: the life and afterlife of Menachem Mendel Schneerson. Princeton University Press. p. 108.
  4. The latter claims are supported by the following sources: Letter to Judge Gad Frumkin, who had accompanied Rabbi Yosef Yitzchak in Palestine, in Gad Frumkin, The Way of the Judge in Jerusalem (Tel Aviv: Dvir, 1955), 308–11. Ehud Ein-Gal, “Ten Days before the Massacre,” Haaretz Musaf, August 20, 2004.
  5. Chabad, Cause and Effect.
  6. Inbari, M. (2012). Messianic religious Zionism confronts Israeli territorial compromises. Cambridge University Press. P. 118.
  7. Matthew Wagner Shapira's distinction between Jewish, gentile blood: Shapira, who grew up in Kedumim, learned in religious-Zionist yeshivot, first in Merkaz Harav's High School and later in Merkaz Harav's yeshiva for older students. Jerusalem Post. JANUARY 28, 2010 04:36
  8. Kelly Geraldine Malone, Warrant issued for Winnipeg family charged with staging hate crime at café, CBC, 6 October 2020, archived on 11 April 2021