Dov Lipman: Yair Lapid’s “Useful Hareidi Idiot”


rabbi-moshe-averickBy Rabbi Moshe Averick

It seems that Yesh Atid MK (Member Knesset) Dov Lipman was upset that Rav Aharon Feldman, the Rosh Yeshiva (Dean) of Ner Israel Rabbinical College, publicly condemned him as a “rasha” (wicked person). Lipman – a Ner Israel alumnus – penned an“Open Letter to the Baltimore Jewish Community” on 5/8/13 clarifying his position on Jewish education in Israel – which was the cause of Rabbi Feldman’s condemnation – and why he felt he was judged unfairly. [Rav Feldman later clarified that while Lipman is not a rasha, he is wrong and misguided.]

Lipman, by his own admission, wants to cut off government funding for Hareidi schools that have the unmitigated gall to continue teaching the curricula that have kept the Jewish people alive and well for the past 3400 years. They must toe the line and accept a more “modern” curriculum or fend for themselves. Mr. Lipman feels that his black velvet “hareidi” yarmulke magically invests him with educational expertise and insight that eclipses that of the great Torah sages of both Israel and his native United States, who have unanimously condemned his views. Lipman, who rode into the Knesset on Lapid’s coattails and makes self-delusionary claims that he represents the best interests of the Hareidi community, would be lucky to receive even a handful of votes if he ran as a Hareidi candidate.

He also supports Lapid’s policy of compulsory draft for yeshiva students, while expecting the undying gratitude of the religious world because he graciously has allowed for 1800 full time yeshiva students to be exempt. How Dov Lipman got the idea that he has the authority to decide who should or should not be allowed to study Torah remains a mystery. My guess is that it results from an inflated sense of self-importance due to his role as Yair Lapid’s loyal Hareidi poodle.

In short, Dov Lipman has taken on the traditional role of limiting and/or destroying the study of Torah, that in the past was filled by various Roman and Greek tyrants, Hellenist Jews, Russian Czars, Communist dictators, and anti-religious secular Zionists, among others.

The issue, though, goes much deeper than the condemnation of a political lackey who will be dumped as soon as he outlives his usefulness. Many people – particularly those who are infatuated with modernity – seem to have forgotten that the Jewish state is only 65 years old, a drop in the bucket when viewed against the backdrop of 4 millennia of Jewish history. Secular/Socialist Zionism, the ideology of choice of many of the early founders of the State of Israel, is essentially dead. It had all the characteristics of a mule, which is the result of cross-breeding a horse and donkey. The upside of a mule: It has the strength of a horse and the endurance of a donkey. The downside: It cannot reproduce; its lifespan is one generation…period. Secular/Socialist Zionism – as far as its ability to inspire a new generation – has utterly failed. Non-observant Jewish university students who – in decades past – were outspoken supporters of the Jewish state and flocked to Israel as volunteers on kibbutzim are now demonstrating for Palestinian rights, marching with anti-Israel Arab jihadists on campus, and urging boycotts of Israeli products.

The future of the State of Israel lies with those who are committed to Jewish observance and tradition in some way that can be deemed significant. This certainly does not mean that all Israelis will be fully observant, Orthodox, or hareidi in the foreseeable future; but there is no future for those with an exclusively secular ideology. Nearly one third of all first graders in Israel today are enrolled in Hareidi schools. Close to 60% of all first graders are enrolled in Hareidi, Hareidi Le’umi (Nationalist Hareidi), or Dati Le’umi (Religious Zionist) schools. It is routine for religious/hareidi families to have 6-10 children. It is rare to find a secular family in Israel with more than one or two.

If Secularism struggles to provide the depth of motivation and commitment necessary to bring children into the world, how can it possibly hope to provide the commitment and motivation necessary to maintain a Jewish state in the face of worldwide demonization – the UN has passed more resolutions condemning Israel than any other nation in existence – and fanatical Arab/Islamic hordes bent on her destruction? The Torah describes our slavery in Egypt as a “fiery refining furnace.” In the ensuing 3,400 years nothing has really changed. The mission of our people has required us to endure an ongoing series of “refining furnaces” across the ages. In the end only those that cling to the eternal values of the Torah can thrive and grow through such a process.

If Dov Lipman would like to make a real contribution he should point out to Yair Lapid – as I wrote about at length in an earlier article – that the Hareidi community has been demonized and marginalized since the early days of Zionism. The Hareidim has been treated as 2nd class citizens since the founding of the state. Secular Israelis have bent over backwards in their attempts to make peace with the murderous Arabs/Islamists who surround them. It is time to now to make peace with their own Hareidi brothers and sisters. The study of Torah is the only thing that kept the Jewish people alive for thousands of years; the study of Torah is national service of the highest order and without it the Jewish people and the State of Israel would disappear.

My son Danny (left) who served the people of Israel as an IDF soldier and continues to serve the nation by living and working in Jerusalem. He stands with his brother Joshie who has continuously served the people of Israel by studying Torah full-time in the Mir Yeshiva in Jerusalem.

A final message to Dov Lipman: If you want to return to your true Torah roots and accept the authority of the great Torah sages when it comes to the education of our children, we will accept you back with open arms. If not,  remember one thing and one thing only: When you hear Yair Lapid say “jump,” that is your cue to say, “how high boss?!”

Rabbi Moshe Averick is author of Nonsense of a High Order: The Confused and Illusory World of the Atheist. He can be reached via his website.

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  1. Why must we resort to name-calling? Can’t we disagree with the point of view of someone with intelligent, rational discourse rather than labeling and name-calling? Rabbi Lipman may not agree with our Hashkafos, but let’s disagree with him with respect..

  2. gr8 article may dov lipman be chozer bitushuva . until he is , those of us who think dovs wrong should go on his facebook page and protest his views

  3. Perhaps Lipman is a modern day Max Lilienthal. Nevertheless Reb Yitzchok of Volozhin treated the latter with respect.

  4. Didn`t Max L become a member of HUC ? I guess Dov will have where to go after he finishes his tenure at the Knesset

  5. There seems to be a tirade to kill “MK DOV” as all expense. Articles, posts, videos and letterS, Not sure when this will end or HOW??!!

  6. This will only end when matzav ends it.
    The readership of this site thinks that
    everyone is against Rav Lipman which
    is very far from the truth.
    Matzav you are no better than Pravda!

  7. To all you self rightious phonies, if the shoe was on the other foot you would be calling for their heads! Thank you Matzav for exposing Lipman for who he is: A hater of Torah!

  8. Its interesting that noone comments on the Divrei Torah that are posted on Matzav. Only on Controvesy people are drawn to. how sad

  9. To all those commenters who felt I was too sharp with Dov Lipman; I understand your viewpoint and my decision to write in such strong language about him was not taken lightly. If Dov Lipman, as a committed Haredi Jew living in Israel voiced his opinion then if I had chosen to disagree, I would have written an article with a very different tone. However, Lipman has joined a secular political party that hasn’t the faintest understanding of the true meaning of Jewish History, Torah, and Am Yisroel. He pretends to represent the Hareidi community; this already tells you what a dishonest person he is. He is working to impose his personal will on the chinuch of Jewish children against the wishes of all the g’dolei yisroel. A man like that does not deserve any respect at all. He is a liar and a charlatan.

  10. You bring back memories from the good old days when taught us. regards from Melbourne and keep up the good work

  11. who does anyone think they are to decide if he is right or wrong all you need to no is all the gedolim are against him. Man lives max 120 after that theres no games he will hav alot of explaining to do nothing he should be looking foward to

  12. Rabbi Averich is 1oo% correct. Dov Lipman is a fake “chareidi” he should be honest and state that he is really left wing MO. The basic fundamental chareidi outlook is that as Torah Jews we sumbit to the decisions and guidance of the Gedolai Hador especially in regards to Talmud Torah and Chinuch.
    Unfortunately Dov Lipman either never truely understood what he was taught at Ner Yisroel or is so caught up in the pursuit of fame and the limelight he is willing to reject his own Rabbeim and sell out to Lapid and the far left.

  13. I agree that we should show some respect for Lapid’s lap poodle as soon as he shows some repect for those that deserve the highest respect – Gedolei HaTorah. Our clarion call should be undivided respect for Hashem Yisbarach! Until this misguided individual falls in line with our Torah True leaders, he is nothing greater that a stinky rag used by Yesh Atid to clean up their fecal mess. How blind can this poor soul be? Let this be a lesson to us all how low one can fall!!!

  14. In my humble opinion, which doesn’t really matter anyway, the above article was written coherently and respectfully. Rabbi Averick is disagreeing with MK Lipman’s views, (which is surely unnecessary as our Torah leaders have already told us the true Torah point of view), but explaining his position without sugar coating the issues, all the while putting forth a cogent argument.One can be respectful while explaining one’s positions articulately without bending over backwards.

  15. This was sent to me from a former friend/student of Lipmans:

    someone who only has a cursory understanding of the wider yeshiva world both in America and Israel.
    someone who loves attention (as attested to people who have grown up with him or are acquainted with him).
    In terms of scholarly works includes a book of superficial answers to surface level hashkafic question, sports/torah mashalim and a weekly section of relatively easy question on the parsha in torah tidbits.

  16. #6
    “Perhaps Lipman is a modern day Max Lilienthal. Nevertheless Reb Yitzchok of Volozhin treated the latter with respect”

    Reb Yitzchok was afraid understandably of the czarist govt.
    He prepared his heavy wool coat ,for he suspected he would be shortly given a one way ticket to Siberia

    You ,therefore ,are presuming the Modern state of is comparable
    Well then
    ‘nough said