May 29, 2024
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Leading Israeli Rabbis Oppose French Jewish Immigration

i24news—Rabbis warn that some French Jews may have to undergo conversion, others may become less observant.

Leading ultra-Orthodox rabbis are calling on French Jews not to move to Israel, fearing that their immigration would erode their observance of Jewish law and life. Their comments are in sharp contradiction to calls by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and other Israeli leaders urging European Jews to seek a safe haven in Israel, especially after the recent attack at the Jewish supermarket in Paris.

The rabbis, cited in recent days in ultra-Orthodox media outlets, contend that whereas in France and in other Jewish Diasporas, Jews observe Jewish laws to avoid assimilation, in the Jewish state they have no need to be so observant. The rabbis also claim that about 50 percent of French Jews are married to non-Jews who will be required to undergo a rigorous conversion process if they are to be considered Jewish in Israel.

The Yated Neeman newspaper quoted Rabbi Chaim Kanievsky as ruling that a person may only make Aliyah (immigration) “if he finds himself in a clear religious place.” Rabbi Aharon Shteinman said the call by Israeli leaders for immigration was “hasty,” adding that there is no reason to make aliyah at all “as the Messiah has yet to arrive.”

Rabbi Shteinman was also quoted by the Kikar Hashabat website as saying that the security situation is difficult in Israel as well and that Jews are also being murdered here.

Hapeles newspaper, which is affiliated with Rabbi Shmuel Auerbach, argued that the call to make aliyah was driven by a feeling of “power drunkenness” of Zionism. Many ultra-Orthodox Jews are opposed to the existence of Israel, arguing that a Jewish state can only be established after the Messiah comes.

 

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