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Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Rabbi Chaim Kanievsky bans hiring Arabs

Rabbi Chaim Kanievsky (pictured, top left), a prominent Torah scholar and Jewish law decisor and the son-in-law of Rabbi Yosef Shalom Elyashiv, who is regarded as the ultra-Orthodox rabbinical leader, has banned the hiring of Arabs.
"According to Jewish law, it is completely forbidden to hire Arabs, especially in yeshivas; there is a concern of endangering lives,” Rabbi Chaim Kanievsky, considered a top Torah sage of the generation in the haredi-religious community, said Sunday.

According to Yom Hadash, a free daily newspaper for the ultra-Orthodox community, several administrators of a yeshiva in Bnei Brak met the rabbi at his home in the central Israel city and told him of an Arab employee who they said was not suspected of involvement in any terror-related activity.

The administrators asked the rabbi for guidance in the wake of the deadly terror attack at the Mercaz Harav rabbinical seminary in Jerusalem, which was carried out by an east Jerusalem Arab who was formerly employed by the establishment.

Rabbi Kanievsky responded by issuing a Jewish legal decision banning the employment of Arab workers by Jews and said "After all, we are at war with them…and are there not Jews that can work and make a living?
Well, yes. But unfortunately, unless Rabbi Kanievsky can force the employers to pay those Jews a living wage, they may continue to be 'unable' to hire Jews and will hire Arabs instead.


At 6:35 PM, Blogger NormanF said...

Israeli employers won't hire Arabs. They won't pay Jews a living wage. To get around the need for cheap labor, Israel has imported workers from the Far East and Eastern Europe. They're not Jews but unlike the Arabs they won't murder Jews. No Jew in Israel in their right mind is going to hire an Arab today, period.

At 7:34 PM, Blogger Carl in Jerusalem said...


While you're right about the influx of 'foreign workers' (who are just the next social problem waiting to happen here), there are actually still Jews who hire Arabs. Lots of them.

At 9:31 PM, Blogger NormanF said...

The aim of the Labor Zionists (the socialist) Left in hiring only Jewish labor was two fold: to make the Jew master work and second to prevent Jews from becoming colonialists reliant on Arab labor like the the whites where in their African colonies. There was never anything racist about it and it saved the Yishuv during the Arab revolt in the 1930s.

Today its considered "racist" to demand Jewish labor only. Whatever the savings to Israeli employers might be in hiring Arabs, its not worth the risk in Jewish lives. Perhaps someday the country will finally learn that lesson.

At 3:08 PM, Blogger SC&A said...

What happens when 'the other' deems it acceptable not to hire Jews?

The vast majority of Arabs are not psychopathic murderers. They may at time 'cheer on' the behavior of others but in the end, they are no different than professional wrestling fans.

Not unlike the rest of us.

It also bears remembering that for every Arab who murders a Jews, there are an equal number who have protected Jews in trouble in the territories, informed on the terrorists, or have long earned the trust of their Jewish employers, looking out for their best interests and well being.

The downside of the Rabbi's remarks will have far reaching unintended consequences that will last a very long time.

While the Rabbi's remarks may be well received in a community that for the most part cares and knows little of the power and influence of the internet, the rest of us are not so blind.

I am reminded of the story of the Rabbi in pre war Europe who admonished and forbade his students and followers from leaving the continent.

The rest as they say, is history.

Ecclesiastical edicts are best given- and taken- in the context of reality.


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