Opinion: ‘Starving Mother’ Case Part Of Campaign Of Persecution Against Orthodox


motherBy Dudi Zilbershlag

Anyone looking for reinforcements to the claim that Israel is home to an anti-chareidi campaign of persecution got what they were looking for, big time, with the story of the mother who allegedly starved her son.

Once the story broke out, I was approached by many media outlets requesting a response, yet in the first few hours I found it difficult to elicit accurate information about the affair, even though I knew about the mother’s arrest since the beginning of the week. When the pressure grew from more and more media outlets, I found it difficult to defend the riots, but I was careful not to condemn them either. I felt that the shattered mother and her pained home are an interest that is no less important than the public relations of the entire Orthodox community.

Slowly I discovered a picture taken from dark worlds that raised incisive questions vis-à-vis most government authorities involved in the affair. In this framework I will not deal with the innocence of the miserable mother, but even if it is proven that she suffers from the Munchausen Syndrome, the question that emerges is why did media outlets choose to present a sick person as a criminal?

 Those familiar with the syndrome stress that it is an obsessive desire to help someone under one’s care to the point of jeopardizing him, so that both the caretaker and person under care receive attention. Notably, in most cases we see the caretaker focus on one person, so that there is no risk to the other children, and the detained woman is indeed known as a model mother to her four other children. That is, we are not dealing with a ticking bomb or with a violent woman holding a submachine gun and firing in all directions.

In fact, we are dealing with someone who may be “dangerous” to a specific person, and therefore logic dictates that we remove the danger. It is therefore natural to limit the mother’s access to her son’s hospital bed. Here too we see a difficult question emerging – how did the Hadassah hospital allow such “danger” to access the sensitive oncological ward in the past six months?

I must admit that the voices emerging from the ultra-Orthodox camp point the finger at Yerushalayim’s welfare services over their involvement in the affair. In conversations with elements within the chareidi camp, I discovered that they believe we are seeing a false arrest that is completely needless; they say it will ruin a longtime effort by the regional welfare office, which along with the rabbis managed to create trust vis-à-vis the communities residing in the Mea Shearim area. A very senior welfare official told me that to his regret, the latest developments will take us back 20 years.

The corridors of medical institutions in Israel are filled with chareidi community members who are regularly invited to assist the general population, but suddenly they are being looked down upon? Why weren’t they approached to handle the problem?

Yet the most terrible damage caused in the wake of this miserable arrest is that it will prompt many Orthodox mothers to refrain from heading to hospital in times of emergency. They will prefer to have their child treated by a chareidi paramedic, instead of going to a medical facility accompanied by two lawyers.

In a touching conversation held by Police Commander Aharon Franco with the elders and dignitaries of the Orthodox Eidah Hachareidis, he too expressed his puzzlement over the arrest, based on his familiarity with the circumstances. However, all of this did not prevent the Prosecutor’s Office from initially objecting to the mother’s release. So you still claim there is no anti-chareidi persecution in Israel?

{Ynet/Matzav.com Newscenter}


  1. it would be only fair to mention that dudi zilbershlag runs a pr firm and was hired by the family to do their spin.

  2. oh please. if anything the haredim weprsecute against their own government and the people who protect them.
    no one persecutes haredim, especially the jews who run their homeoland.

  3. to hired gun:

    Firstly, how do you know?
    And even if he was hired, who said that that mitigates what he says here?
    THe seculars hate the chareidim more than they hate anyone or anything in the entire stinkin world. Dudi is right on the mark, whether he was hired on not.

  4. to ycw:
    its in all the israeli newspapers.he is representing the family since the begining of this story.he might have something true to say,however it should be mentioned that he is a hired man.

  5. Who hired the secular paper’s in Israel??

    Not since the begining of this story, but since their first edition.

    Who cares if he was hired? ??? ?? ???? ??? ??????

  6. “.THe seculars hate the chareidim more than they hate anyone or anything in the entire stinkin world”

    WRONG AS USUAL, two years ago a huge survey was conducted, “Who do the secularites hate the most in Israel”?
    #1 ANSWER was the settlers, so if you are Charedi and live in Betair, Emanuel, Kiryat Sefer, Efrat, Nvei Yakov, Bet El then you won. If you happen to live in Meah Shearim, Geulah, Bayit Vegan, etc…. you did not win the contest.

  7. get the lady into therapy
    get the kid into a hospital (ok .. go to shaarei tzedek allready)
    was it really necessary to arrest lady in public and chain her in public ???
    STOP throwing rocks and dippers at policemen

    and then ……… maybe .. we can back to reality

    one question
    Toldos Aaron people do not accept government subsidies ?? who subsidizes hadasah ?? is it not the Memshalah ?? isnt this a bit hypocritical ?? hey .. what ever works i guess

    kesef metaher mamzerim ????

  8. Perhaps it is “just a little seichel” that needs to get into therapy. And I’ve got a few more bridges to sell you, cheap on the stimulus plan.

    The crime is catching on to medical errors and negligence and threatening to expose them. The ones who swallow the Munchausen business hook line and sinker perhaps need to see someone for a reality check.

  9. it is hard to believe that yidden that put on teffilin every day and yiddeness that light candles every friday afternoon should be so eager to defend a “roztzachas” just because she is part of their oilom, and also to ignore the mashcheesed and mazeekim who burned down the city of yerushalyim in their childish rage of temper.how did we raise a generation of such shotim?!

  10. the same generation who raised, you, shoin genug, to swallow headlines without thinking there might be mmore than meets the eye. Like folks getting sick and tired of living without basic civil rights- — if police storm a Satmar shul and break a kid’s arm, folks like you are silent. Yet, chas v’shalom, if those folks being denied their rights protest, oy, vay, they become mazeekim for begging the world to see the injustices done to them.

  11. Please stop with the “don’t accept subsidies from the medina”. It’s not just the money, it’s the roads, buses, garbage collection, mail delivery, electricity – the infrastructure and more…Someone (people who pay taxes) pay for it all. If the garbage is collected from your street – you are accepting the service from the “medina”.
    As far as the story goes – we don’t have all the facts – wait for video recordings, witness accounts, etc.
    (And yes, some members of my family are Toldos Aaron)
    And why would secular love us if what they see is “fanatics” burning and rioting, throwing rocks and screaming their lungs out.

  12. This religion that you yell in the name of so righteously has some pretty interesting repercussions for one who calls another a murderer without halachically admissable evidence.

    So, who raised you to throw such Motzi Shem Ra around and commit murder on a fellow Jew? I would think a burning garbage can pales in comparison with the heinous destruction of a woman by calling her a murderer without a conviction, let alone a halachik conviction.


  13. i know it from chareidi women who do chesed work in hadassah.they have been suspecting that something was wrong with this woman 4 a while.rabbonim have been involved 4 a few weeks b4 this went public.it is very sad,but true.it could happen anywhere.

  14. “why did media outlets choose to present a sick person as a criminal?”

    If she really starved her son to 7kg, she is sick AND a criminal.

    Where is the proof of chemotherapy you said last week was immediately available? We are waiting for it.

  15. the illness does NOT mean you look after someone too much. it means you damage that person in order to get sympathy and attention.