Article on 1952 Meeting of the Agudath Harabonim Protesting “Asserted Attacks on the Fundamentals of the Jewish Religion by the State of Israel”

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ATTACK ON RELIGION CHARGED TO ISRAEL

From the New York Times, 9.25.1952

Meeting Here Led by Orthodox Rabbis Lists Four Dangers, Asks Their Abolition

In a Sharply Worded protest to the Government of Israel, 4,000 Jews demanded last night an Immediate end to systematic at-tacks on the fundamentals of the Jewish religion" in that nation.
 
The action was taken at a meeting in Manhattan Center, 311 West Thirty-fourth Street under the auspices of the Union Of Orthodox Rabbis of the United States and Canada, the largest orthodox association in the country. Rabbi Eliezer Silver of Cincinnati, president of the union, was chair-man.
 
A resolution unanimously adopted by the meeting listed four "serious dangers" confronting religious Jewry in Israel: the conscription of religious women into military service; "the planned abolition of the autonomous religious educational systems" "the planned promulgation of a law depriving the holy yeshivot (higher schools of learning) and other charitable institutions in Israel of their in-violate independence and freedom by instituting rigid Government controls over their operation"; and "the Introduction of public desecration of the Sabbath in communication and transportation."
 
Expressing "deep consternation" over the asserted attacks on the fundamentals of the Jewish religion, the resolution asserted: "The demonstration resolves further to request the Union of Orthodox Rabbis to transmit forthwith a 'vigorous protest to the Government of Israel against the above-mentioned assaults, and to demand of the Israeli Government that she should put an immediate halt to these attacks on Torah (bible) and religion."
 
Fund Drives Mentioned
 
In the event the union's action does not have the "desired effect." the resolution continued, the rabbinical organization "should publicly declare itself opposed to the official public appeals of the State of Israel as long as these decrees will continue in effect Speakers specifically mentioned the United Jewish Appeal and the Israel bond drive. Instead, the resolution declared the union "should establish an in-dependent Israel campaign to support the religious community in Israel and the holy institutions of Torah study and traditional philanthropy."
 
A second resolution registered "strong protest against the continuous intimidation of tens of thousands of immigrant children who are forced through economic, pressure and coercion on their parents to become absorbed in anti-religious atmospheres, schools and institutions."
 
Speakers Included Rabbi Silver, Rabbi Aaron Kotler of Lakewood. N. J. dean of the Academy for Higher Torah Research; Rabbi. Meyer Cohen, director of the union. and Elijah Stein, who spoke, in behalf of the orthodox Jewish laity.
 
A spokesman at the meeting said the union's stand was endorsed by two other rabbinical organizations in this country and six national organizations of Jewish laymen

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