Thursday, January 24, 2008
..To this day, the most renowned Hasidic sect, Chabad-Lubavitch, religiously celebrates the anniversaries of the release from Russian jails of its revered founding Rebbe, Shneur Zalman of Lyadi in 1798, as well as the subsequent liberations of his descendants, Rabbi Dov Ber Schneerson in 1826 and Rabbi Joseph Isaac Schneerson, who had been imprisoned by the Soviets in 1927. Behind all these unjust incarcerations lay the mischievous work of Jewish informants, initially from among the misnagdim, Hasidism’s mainstream rabbinical opponents, later the maskilim or Jewish champions of the European Enlightenment, and finally the radicals of the notorious Yevseksia, the “Yiddish division” of the Communist Party. Indeed, during the dark days of Soviet Communism, zealously anti-ecclesiastical members the Yevseksia did the government’s dirty work of shutting down synagogues and yeshivas and jailing their rabbinic leaders. It is thus for legitimate historical reasons that, in the Hasidic psyche, the deepest contempt is reserved for Jewish informants, or mosrim.