Sonei Torah Steep Low, Spread Baseless Rumor About Venerated Ungvarer Rov


rav-menashe-kleinFalse rumors have been spread by irresponsible and reckless individuals about the Ungvarer Rov, Rav Menashe Klein, the famed author of Mishnah Halachos and a respected senior posek from Boro Park. According to the false rumor, the posek has been forced to remain in Eretz Yisroel for the past three months, unable to return to the United States for fear of legal action by the FBI. Those close to Rav Klein have made it clear, and wish it to publicized, that there is no truth whatsoever to the rumors.

Rav Klein, who survived the concentration camps during the Holocaust, has remained in Yerushalayim for over three months, but not for any legal reasons at all. Those behind the recent lie have utilized Rav Klein’s extended stay in Eretz Yisroel as a proof for their trumped-up story.

Talmidim and those close to Rav Klein have been flabbergasted by the spreading of the baseless statements and have made clear that whatever rumors have been concocted are completely fabricated. According to the phony rumors, if Rav Klein were to return to the United States, he would be apprehended immediately by the FBI.

Rav Dovid Shlomo Klein, a son of Rav Menashe and the rov of the Ungvar Bais Medrash in Ramot, Yerushalayim, said that he is at a loss as to why someone would invent a baseless rumor about his well-known and respected father.

“I don’t know what would bring someone to spread such a totally false rumor,” he said. “There is no basis to it whatsoever… So close to Yom Kippur one would antagonize one of the gedolei and tzadikei hador and try to be mevazeh him? They don’t know that they are playing with fire?”

R’ Itzeh Poluch, who runs the Ungvar mosdos and is a close confidante of Rav Klein, related that Rav Klein has for a long time desired to settle in Eretz Yisroel.

“For several years, he has already kept only one day of Yom Tov in Eretz Yisroel,” he said, “considering himself a resident of Eretz Yisroel.”

Over a year ago, he said, Rav Klein told his followers at his bais medrash on 16th Avenue and 53rd Street in Boro Park that he intended to move to Eretz Yisroel.

In the meantime, Rav Klein had been scheduled to return to the United States for health reasons, but at the same time wished to be in Eretz Yisroel for Rosh Hashanah and it is too difficult, due to his age and condition, for him to travel back and forth in such a short period of time. It was thus decided that he would remain in Eretz Hakodesh for now and return to the United States for Sukkos and then remain in chutz la’aretz for the duration of the winter.

There is not event a kernel of truth to the rumors that have been spread, say those close to Rav Klein.

Chas veshalom,” says R’ Itzeh. “Not one iota… These people have simply taken one of the gedolei hador and caused a disgrace. How are they not afraid to do that? …This is simply an evil act perpetrated by irresponsible and reckless people who have had the audacity to lie and try to embarrass one of the ziknei poskei hador.”

Those who have spread the rumor, according to reports, did so based on a statement made by Rav Klein at the time of a simcha of one of his grandchildren, in which he expressed his thanks to the Ribono Shel Olam for being rescued “miyedei zeidim,” referring to the Nazis ym”sh. The instigators of this rumor decided that this meant that the rov was saved from persecution of the FBI.

R’ Itzeh says that the absurdity of the notion is clear.

“In that which the rov wrote at the time, he clearly stated what he was referring to. He was referring to his rescue from the hands of the Nazis during the Holocaust. ..He was in Buchenwald together with his father and the Rav Harashi, Rav Lau, and from there he was saved over 60 years ago. It was this that he was thanking Hashem for… One would have to be an am haaretz to conclude that he was somehow referring to the FBI.”

“Those who support Torah and the devar Hashem are hereby mocheh (protest) for kavod haTorah and the kavod of Rav Klein,” said Rav Shmuel Bucholtz of Yerushalayim. “People who spread rumors, using recent events in the United States to try to give them some legitimacy, will ultimately receive what is coming to them from Above. These people have taken a holy Yid and tried to create a chillul Hashem. The only chillul Hashem is what they have done.”

{Yair Israel}


  1. they made up a story about money laundering. it is sheker vechozov. as far from the truth as anything. like i said these people will burn

  2. Shot? By whose law? Certainly not by ours, and not by civil law either.

    Yes, it’s terrible that such rumors are spread, but we should be careful about how we express ourselves, especially in Elul.

    Oy l’rasha, oy l’shkeinav. We have had arrests, and now the innocent are suspected too.

  3. #1 “fear of legal action by the FBI” due to rumors just doesn’t sound right. I don’t know why we get a half of a story. Secondly, I know Horav Klien, he is a massive Talmid chochom AND a true baal chessed, kind and great yid. Yesh din V’yesh Dayan.

  4. Many years ago when Reb Yakov Kaminetzky and Reb Shimon Schwab were in Eretz Yiroel, the same rumor was spread about them. It turned out to be untrue, for when they returned to the USA they were not apprehended.

  5. “For several years, he has already kept only one day of Yom Tov in Eretz Yisroel,” he said, “considering himself a resident of Eretz Yisroel.”

    Not true at all. I personally ate the Yom Tov seuda with him on second day Simchas Torah in Ramot Polin last year. Then he was keeping second day Yom Tov. Maybe since then he stopped.

  6. someone said this about rav pam!? honestly, no one, no mean no one, even the most secular, had anything against him – even a reform rabbi said that he knew he was a holy man. It seems this is a common thing to do unfortunately

  7. Wasn’t it claimed at some point – perhaps in the 1970’s, that Rav Klein Shlita was running the largest yeshiva in America if not the world?