Airline Stops Rabbi for ‘Suspicious’ Shofar


shofarAn Israeli rabbi narrowly escaped arrest after being stopped by security officers at Munich airport for carrying a shofar. Airport officials pulled aside the man, in his late 50s, and asked him to explain the religious article while arriving on a flight from Tel-Aviv on Monday night. He was visiting his daughter who lives in Nuremberg and works as an Israeli emissary in the city.”He was in a bit of a panic,” said Gigi Mechlowitz, a fellow Jewish passenger from Manchester, who stopped to help.

“They told him to open his bag and loads of security guards came around. The rabbi asked me how to say shofar in German.”

Mr. Mechlowitz said: “Officers escorted the rabbi to a customs area suspicious the ram’s horn was a trophy from a protected animal.

“The rabbi told them in English ‘sixty years ago you knew exactly what it was and we got liquidated because of religious items’.

“I thought he was going to be arrested,” added Mr Mechlowitz, who defused the situation by suggesting the customs officials Google the item.

After some investigations airport guards returned and asked the rabbi one final test to ensure the item was safe – a full blowing of the shofar.

Mr. Mecholowitz said: “He didn’t just give a quick toot, but a whole tekiah teruah thing. About 20 to 30 people, mainly airport staff and a few passengers, looked up in awe.

“It got a nice round of applause from everybody.”

{The JC/}


  1. Cell phones attached to deodorant bottles and wires galore was normal for two Muslim type peaceloving men BUT a Ram’s Horn–now that is suspicious and warrents arrest.

  2. This is not surprising. I read a year ago that a Yid was arrested in Munich for his tefillin. The Officer thought he was suspicious and harrassed him. He filed a complaint when he arrived at Ben Gurion with the German Embassy in Tel Aviv. I don’t know if the Officer was reprimanded. Why fly through Germania?

  3. 1.whatever happened to the concept of training airport personnel to PROFILE…use common sense and patterns of behavior… to weed out the truly dangerous passengers?
    2.i think his remark about them knowing good and well what a shofar was years ago was brilliant.
    3.i think(almost) getting arrested for ridiculous reasons,and not being freed for malicious reasons…shows that no matter how sophisticated people have become, it’s an olam hasheker,still.

  4. Wow! What Hashgacha! Someone needed to hear that Shofar blown. I’ll bet that one day we will hear the story about what that Shofar blast produced in the life of a Jew or a Ger.