Rav Shteinman’s Initial Response to Baba Elazar Tragedy: Silence


rav-shteinmanShortly after davening Shacharis on Erev Shabbos, a number of those who are close to Maran Rav Aharon Leib Shteinman went to his home and told him about the terrible tragedy that occurred the night before with the stabbing and subsequent petirah of Rav Elazar Abuchatzeirah of Beer Sheva.

One member of the group related: “At 7:30 a.m., we went to the rosh yeshiva and told him that Rav Elazar was brutally murdered by a [supposedly] chareidi person.

“For a long time,” says the man, “the rosh yeshiva refused to speak. He grieved silently, shaking his head in absolute disbelief. All day, he refused to talk and seemed to be experiencing deep anguish. ‘The tragedy is incomprehensible, inconceivable,’ he said several times.”

On Friday afternoon, just before the onset of Shabbos, Rav Shteinman told one of his grandchildren, “When there is a situation amongst Am Yisroel of a state of deterioration in bein adam lachaveiro, it is impossible to know to what extent it can deteriorate. We are witnessing an unprecedented situation amongst Am Yisroel. We must strengthen ourselves in our conduct bein adam lachaveiro, especially during this period of Bein Hametzorim.”

Rav Shmuel Auerbach and Rav Nissim Karelitz, among other gedolim, have also instructed their talmidim following the tragedy to increase their study of mussar and to pay focused attention on improvements in areas of bein adam lachaveiro.

{Yair Alpert-Matzav.com Israel}


  1. Rav Shteinman is true to his name and his namesake: Vayidom Aharon.

    Aharon Hakohen’s yahrzeit is tomorrow, Rosh Chodesh Menachem Av.

    There are no coincidences in this world.

    Hashem Yerachem.

  2. How about acting toward one another with true ahavas Yisroel – to love another person solely because he’s a Yid! Ahavas C*H*I*N*O*M! For no other reason other than Hakadosh Boruch Hu created him as he created you!
    We have regressed to the point that if we disgree with another, it develops into hate – or a form of hate! THAT we must fix!
    Think, Leiby zatza”l loved everyone!
    The Baba zatza”l loved everyone!
    We must also love everyone!
    Pure, unadulterated Ahavas Yisroel!
    Because THAT will right the wrong that caused the Batei Mikdash’s destruction!

    Similarly, our blog comments ALL ought be filled with Ahavas Yisroel!

    Let’s begin today, erev the 9 days!

  3. Lets have a comments section here on Matzav dealing solely with the subject of adding Ahavas Yisroel. And any comments where a person is seen being disrespectful to another person should be removed from all news bites. Alot of Sinas chinam goes on in the comments section. Lets us learn from the past two huge tragedies and try to promote Ahavas yisroel. Even if somebody appears different, less frum let’s respect them and bring them closer.

  4. Beautiful words! and it all starts with loving YOURSELF shene’emar ‘Ve ahavta le re’echa KAMOCHA’ – if you don’t love yourself you can properly love anyone else! So you might want to think about changing your name…

  5. #6, 7, & 8 are so right! What a hachano to the 9 days!
    #6, isn’t #8 right/ Change your name and let’s show an example!
    Rally, the moderators at Matzav.com could show all the other news & blog outlets that we at Matzav.com will set the standard for Ahavas Yisroel! How beautiful it could be!