CHILD SEX INDICTMENTS PLAGUE ORTHODOX JUDAISM
By Rev. Ted Pike
13 Jun 11
A number of Judaism’s most venerable ancient rabbis, whose edicts are recorded in the "Bible" of modern Judaism, the Talmud, were pedophiles. This is documented in my article, “Pedophilia: The Talmud's Dirty Secret.” Some of the earliest and very greatest sages, such as the "great" Simeon ben Yohai, encouraged rabbis to sexually assault ("marry") girls as young as three and permitted Jewish women to molest boys under the age of 9. (See, "Judaism and Homosexuality: A Marriage Made in Hell" and "Pedophilia 'Rampant' in Orthodox Judaism") Orthodox Judaism today reveals a disturbing trend: the more that Jewish leaders literally believe the Talmud, the more they are charged with sex crimes against minors.
It is rare today that rabbis from the liberal branches of Judaism, which often “spiritualized” the Talmud, are accused of sex crimes against minors. (These are Reform, Conservative and Reconstructionist.) Yet in Orthodox Jewish centers such as New York and Israel, an escalating number of such Orthodox authorities are indicted as child molesters. These rabbis do not merely theorize about the Talmud’s encouragement of child sex but act on it.
Shmarya Rosenberg publishes Failed Messiah, a site devoted to ultra-Orthodox Judaism and exposing its sins. A former member of the Lubavitcher Hasidic movement who remains a practicing Orthodox Jew, he has published hundreds of posts about Orthodox molestation and says he gets dozens of tips per week.
New York journalist and attorney Michael Lesher says, “A certain amount of sexual deviance is going to be found in any society. What is really shocking is the extent of license that’s been extended to these people to victimize children and if you are a pedophile, the Orthodox Jewish community is one of the best places you can be…” (In The Wall of Silence, a Canadian TV documentary about haredi sexual abuse, part of a larger series.)
Amy Neustein is an Orthodox Jew who wrote Tempest in the Temple: Jewish Communities and Child Sex Scandals. She says, “What outrages me most about pedophilia in the Orthodox Jewish community is the systematic cover-up by its leaders of the ongoing crimes perpetrated against children. Rabbis who have a lot of influence in the community systematically intimidate and threaten abuse victims, their advocates, their supporters and their therapist. The abuse victims are left with no support and they’re fighting a behemoth that’s so strong they don’t know where to turn.”
But it is not only leaders who cover for abusers. An Orthodox rabbi, Yosef Blau, who counsels abuse survivors in New York, notes a significant difference between Catholic and Jewish sex abuse. "In the Catholic Church, the issue was the cover-up by the church hierarchy. Here, it's the community, not the hierarchy. It's the whole community not wanting to admit trouble in our midst." Another difference is that pedophilia in the Catholic Church is condemned by church dogma. Child abuse in Orthodox Judaism, however, is commanded by its most authoritative religious source, the Babylonian Talmud.
In 2008 a rabbi who investigates sex abuse in Orthodox communities was chased out of a synagogue by 200 Hasidic Jewish men in London, who formed a mob—even using their cell phones to call for backup—when they recognized him. (It is hardly possible to imagine this happening in a Catholic church.) Police had to intervene. The rabbi, Nachum Rosenberg, says he feared for his life.
Rosenberg has been investigating molestation in Orthodox communities for 18 months. He says, “These things are happening all the time, but the rabbonim prefer to take a quiet road.” A victim abuse counselor in Brooklyn said, “Outside the Chasidic community no one has heard of Rabbi Rosenberg, but all the Chasidic communities know of his work.” And they do not seem to appreciate it. When the attack outside the synagogue was reported on Jewish websites, there were hundreds of reader comments—mostly negative! Some called the rabbi a “pig,” “sick” and “mentally retarded.”
Washington Post reported on Rabbi Sidney Goldenburg, who had a 30-year religious career and spent it abusing children, shielded by the community as well as the hierarchy. He moved from place to place when whispers began. Not one family sued on behalf of their teenage daughters. Numerous authorities who knew of the multiple complaints against him did not mention them when asked for a reference after he had moved. The law finally caught up with him but after a mere two years in prison, “Goldenberg can still call himself a rabbi, because Jewish authorities say ordination is like an academic degree -- once conferred, it cannot be revoked.”
Failed Messiah reports that there are multiple religious obstacles for Jews who might otherwise report sex abuse. “The obstacles include traditional Jewish rules, adhered to in some pockets of the Orthodox world, such as a prohibition against 'chillul Hashem,' bringing shame on God’s name, and against 'mesirah,' informing on fellow believers to secular authorities.”
The "Billy Graham" of Israel is Child Abuser
Mordechai Elon is one of the most powerful rabbis in the world and a virtual “Billy Graham” of religious influence over Orthodox Jews in Israel. He has made infamous headlines in Israel since 2010 when police announced investigation into allegations of sex with numerous male students, at least one by force. Since 2003, Elon’s crimes against kids had been addressed only by a Jewish non-government body established in 2003 known as Takana. Apparently all that had been required was a promise he would limit his contact with young men.
An opinion piece in YNet News called “Rabbis are Human too” shows the level of adoration and even worship given to rabbis in Israel by the religious. Mordechai Elon is described as more than a rabbi, as a “master and leader,” unique in his level of influence. Israeli families study the Talmud at the dinner table along with his books. After the sex scandal arose, dozens of Elon’s students passionately defended him. So great is Elon’s charisma that the author of the opinion piece wrote that he himself was moved to tears. The reverence of rabbis leads to incredible reluctance to believe overwhelming evidence, let alone a child’s solitary, vulnerable voice of accusation. After Rabbi Elon was exposed for sex abuse, “A yeshivah student said that it amounts to 'crisis of faith'. A rabbi talked about 'emotional disaster,' while a 17-year-old boy said 'he can't get out of bed' because of depression.”
In ultra-Orthodox (Kabbalistic) culture, Talmudic sages are regarded as semi-divine, some having preexisted in heaven before bringing God’s insight to earth. Ultra-Orthodox laity also regard themselves as the presence of divinity in this world. The mythical status of rabbis today gives them all the more power to abuse in secret. When they are found out, they are not responsible to the police.
In Haaretz in 2010, Gideon Levy wrote that the Takana forum is an alternative law enforcement agency for religious Zionists. Levy explains, “A high school teacher at a secular school who sexually assaults his students would be turned over to the police. A rabbi at a yeshiva suspected of the same thing would be turned over to Takana.” This body typically recommends distance from temptation or public life…not prison or public accountability! Even when authorities in Israel are contacted, permissiveness from the government continues. Apparently the Israeli attorney general also advocated silence in the Elon case.
YNet News reported in 2010:
Unfortunately, there are virtually no accurate data on sexual abuse in the religious sector. There is no body dealing with religious kids who have been subjected to molestation or are sexually active in the State of Israel… Dr. Aviad Hacohen, dean of the Sha'arei Mishpat College and member of the Takana forum…stated in 2007 that 95% of sexual offences in Jerusalem were performed by Orthodox and ultra-Orthodox.
"Several years ago, I began looking into the issue on a data-based level," he said. "It turned out that the law enforcement authorities, both the police and the prosecutor's office, were aware of the data but refused to expose it…The fact that all the hearings on these types of offences were held in closed doors and subject to gag orders prevents issuing accurate data."
[Hacohen says] "This is a wide-scale phenomenon. . . most of the serious incest offences within the Jewish sector in Jerusalem are performed within the religious society. This is topped by the bond of silence..."
Here are only some examples of Orthodox rabbis who got caught. How many more remain un-apprehended?
- “Rabbi Avrohom Mondrowitz, a Brooklyn based psychologist, was among the first of a series of high-profile rabbis or yeshiva teachers to be indicted on charges of sexual abuse that have rocked the Orthodox community in recent decades. Press reports have stated that the five-count indictment against him is based on complaints from more than one hundred victims.” (Haaretz.com – N.Y. High Court Takes on Orthodox Sexual Abuse Scandal).
- Rabbi Moshe Nussboim is currently on trial behind closed doors in Jerusalem, accused of sexually abusing three boys in his school between the years 2002 to 2008. (The Jerusalem Post - Sexual Abuse Case Sheds Light on Emmanuel’s Ethnic Tensions).
- Rabbi Nechemya Weberman, a prominent Brooklyn rabbi, was charged in 2011 with molesting a 12-year-old girl over three years. Weberman was charged with a criminal sex act, rape, endangering the welfare of a child and sexual abuse.
- Rabbi Avrohom Reichman was temporarily removed as principal of a Brooklyn yeshiva after being accused of sexually abusing a student. The victim was pressured by all his religious leaders to be quiet about the incidents.
- Rabbi Israel Weingarten was found guilty of molesting his daughter over a seven-year period by a Brooklyn Federal Court in 2009.
- Rabbi Baruch Lebovits was convicted of repeatedly sexually abusing a 16-year-old classmate of his son. A Brooklyn jury found him guilty of eight counts of sexual abuse.
- Rabbi Stanley Z. Levitt, in 2009, was charged with sexually assaulting two 11-year-old students while he taught at the Maimonides School in Brooklyn during the 1970s. In previous years, Levitt was also arrested on various charges related to claims of indecent assault against three other boys.
- Rabbi Bryan Bramley was arrested in 2010 by U.S. Marshals for the rape of a 7-year-old girl in March 2000 in New York City.
- Rabbi Yehuda Kolko pleaded guilty in 2008 to two counts of endangering the welfare of a child for molesting a 6-year-old boy. Another alleged victim stated that he personally knows of another 15 victims, and that he believes more than 100 other boys were molested by the rabbi.
Double Standard for Jewish Sex Offenders
The Jewish-dominated media (See, "Jews Confirm Big Media Is Jewish") has aggressively covered all details of child abuse by Roman Catholic clergy. Have you read anything in it or Christian media hinting that pedophilia is rampant among Orthodox rabbis? Meanwhile, the myth persists that Orthodox Judaism consists of “true Torah-believing Jews” who cling to the laws of Moses.
The truth is that, since the defeat of the Karaite rebellion, no branch of Judaism has deviated from primary loyalty to the Pharisees and their Talmud. Protected from the healthy influence of scrutiny or criticism, Orthodox Judaism reveals as much ethical poverty as its secular counterpart. That spiritual dryness was noted by formerly Orthodox Jewish/conservative talk show host Dr. Laura Schlessinger. She explained her abandonment of Orthodox Judaism on her December 31, 2010 radio broadcast. Dr. Laura said she tried for a lifetime to find some thread of true spiritual comfort in Judaism but could not. Jewish Conservative writer Ben Shapiro says “being truly Jewish requires allegiance to basic Judaic principles: the first and foremost of which is identity with the Jewish people and its enlightened national aspirations. . .” These are social political values – not spiritual ones!
True spirituality, as the Mosaic Law boldly asserts, means loving God with all of our heart, soul, and mind and our neighbor as ourselves. Orthodox Judaism is preoccupied with the Jewish people to the exclusion of the lesser “goyim.” It elevates liturgy, law, tradition and Jewish nationalism. It lacks anything resembling the spiritual emphasis God tried to convince the ancient Hebrews He valued most.
Today, the degenerate ethics (including pedophilia) manifesting in Orthodox Judaism are described by evolutionary racists as evidence of Jewish hereditary corruption: evolution's bad fruits. Actually, it only results from the clearest moral choices 2,000 years ago by the Jewish people and their leaders against Jesus. The Jewish people chose to follow immoral hypocrites, “blind guides who strain at a gnat and swallow a camel” - the Pharisees. Pharisaic perversion has nothing to do with Jewish genes; it is a consequence of rebellion against the known will of God.
Such rebellion continues, lodged in modern Judaism’s “holy Talmud,” giving permission to Jews in every age to molest children. Such perversion takes a mallet to the very foundation of their worth, development and personhood. Christ said it would be better to have a millstone tied around your neck and be thrown into the ocean than to commit such an offense against a child. But today it is an epidemic among the Orthodox because of vastly lowered standards of morality, particularly in the Western world, and correspondingly higher levels of Jewish power.
How can Orthodoxy cleanse itself? It can’t! None of us can. Two thousand years ago Orthodoxy despised and crucified the One whose atoning blood alone can make the filthiest sinner clean. It still vilifies that cleansing fount – teaching the Jewish people that Jesus is now in hell, writhing in boiling excrement (Gitten 56b, 57a). It still insists that the virgin Mary was a whore (Sanhedrin 106b) and that Gentiles are subhuman (Kaerithoth 6b) and may be lied to and cheated (Baba Kama 113b), even killed (Abodah Zara 26b).
How long will Jewry remain in its arid moral wasteland? Jesus answers: “Behold your house is left unto desolate. You shall not see me… until you say, 'Blessed is He who comes in the name of the Lord!'” (Luke 13:35)
Rev. Ted Pike is director of the National Prayer Network, a Christian/conservative
TALK SHOW HOSTS: Interview Rev. Ted Pike on this subject.
Call (503) 631-3808.
National Prayer Network, P.O. Box 828, Clackamas,