Democracy? Another Rabbi in Israel Arrested Because of Sefer Toras Hamelech


sefer-toras-hamelechHundreds of rabbis gathered in Yerushalayim last night to protest police intervention in Torah study, and a few hours later, another rabbi was arrested. Rabbi Yossi Elitzur, a contributing author to the now controversial Torah work Toras Hamelech, was arrested around 2:30 this morning in his hometown of Yitzhar, in the Shomron.

The arrest followed by just a few hours a show of strength by hundreds of rabbis, who gathered in Yerushalayim last night to protest the arrest and/or interrogation of rabbis because of their Torah opinions. The police are demanding 5,000 shekels in bail for Rabbi Elitzur’s release; he was to be brought to court in Rishon LeTzion at 11:30 this morning.

The case began nearly four weeks ago, when the work’s author, Rabbi Yitzchak Shapiro, was arrested in the middle of the night in his home in Yitzhar. The police also confiscated 33 copies of the book, which discusses the legal aspects of life-and-death issues between Jews and non-Jews, especially in times of war. The rabbi was released after several hours.

Two weeks later, least two other rabbis were summoned for questioning for having given approbations to the book. Neither of the two, Rabbi Dov Lior and Rabbi Yaakov Yosef, showed up for questioning – but the very summons infuriated a large sector of the rabbinical world. Last night’s event was the result, at which leading rabbis asserted that the Torah and rabbis’ scholarly opinions thereof are immune to police investigations.

Despite, or because of, the event, the police have now proceeded to arrest Rabbi Elitzur, for the second time. He was taken to the offices of the Serious and International Crimes Unit in Lod. The State Prosecution was reportedly surprised to learn that relatively “moderate” rabbis also took part in last night’s protest. Even Chief Rabbi Yona Metzger, though he did not take part, expressed support, telling Arutz-7, “I oppose a situation in which a rabbi writes a letter of blessing or approbation for a Torah work, and then is accused or taken for questioning.” He said that he does not necessarily support the publication of the book, “because those who are not Torah scholars could misunderstand what is written there… But I suggest that the police come to the Chief Rabbinate for explanations about the significance of an approbation and suffice with that.”

Rabbi Metzger further remarked on the double standard applied by the police, in that “university professors express anti-Zionist, anti-Israeli, and anti-Jewish positions, and support Bishara, Hanin Zouabi and other enemies of Israel, and are allowed to do this in the name of democracy and freedom of expression.”

Read more at Arutz Shevah.

{Arutz Shevah/ Israel}


  1. I know of another case where someone wrote a sefer, which is a likut of only sources in the Torah, and it also has some things in it which the Zionists don’t like. They aired a report about it on TV, how Chareidim are required to kill chilonim, according to this sefer. What they did was take things out of context just to incite people. The author of the sefer left Eretz Yisroel because he is afraid for his life there, because the Zionists want to take revenge on him.

  2. ye definetly hypocritical by the police and whether it is an acceptable publication should be open for critisism and should be left for the experts,the rabbinical establishment.

  3. Nu did the entire olam of charadim join this protest,,,i remember people asking where the RZ were during Emanuel, where are the charadim now????

  4. biryonim gilgulim… Thats what these rabbis are! Even though they may be legitimate halachic opinions they are NOT to legitimate because we have a heretic state government which has NOT been established by HKBH or Messiach… Furthermore, we do NOT have a SANHEDREIN!!!!

  5. THIS IS WHAT KLAL YISROEL NEEDS people who stand up for the torah… for Halacha… people who fear noone but Hashem. when a person is afraid of the police or anyone else. but is not afraid of Hashem AKA: he sins. there is only one word to explain that person A KOFER he is telling everyone i am afraid of humans but i am not afraid of Hashem the KING OF KINGS…

  6. #8 I doubt you even know what Neturei Karta is. They are right, by the way.

    The problem in Israel is institutionalized, seething Jew-hatred, propagandized by the state.

    The misguided so-called people on the “right” are their own worst enemies. Why do the dati leumi Jews support a state that beats and imprisons their rabbis, shoots tear gas as their wives and daughters, and destroys their communities and shuls?

    Why do you villify us Jews (what you call “charedim”) instead of realizing the answer is to just live as a frum Yid and let the state fall apart? Zionism is complete kfirah. Don’t participate in it.