Kiryat Motzkin chief rabbi questioned on incitement

Police question Rabbi David Meir Druckman on 2008 letter calling for boycott of Arab labor.

November 14, 2011 04:38
1 minute read.

Haredi 311. (photo credit: REUTERS)

Police on Sunday brought in Chief Rabbi of Kiryat Motzkin David Meir Druckman for questioning in connection with a letter he signed with 24 other rabbis in 2008 calling for a boycott of Arab labor.

The letter was issued following the Merkaz Harav massacre in March 2008, in which eight students at the yeshiva were shot dead by an Israeli-Arab east Jerusalem resident, who had reportedly worked at the yeshiva in the past as a driver.

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The letter read: “Cheap Arab labor has extracted a high price in blood from us all. It’s time to tell the truth: Providing a livelihood to our enemies brings serious consequences.

As a first step, we are calling for a halt to employing the Arab enemy, at the very least in such close proximity to us. We will not bring enemies into our homes, we will not purchase things from the enemy, we will not directly employ our enemies.”

Among other prominent signatories of the letter were Chief Rabbi of Hebron and Kiryat Arba Dov Lior; Rabbi Yitzhak Ginsburg, head of the Od Yosef Hai yeshiva in the settlement of Yitzhar; and Chief Rabbi of Safed Rabbi Shmuel Eliyahu.

Druckman originally stated that he would not cooperate with the police until Ephraim Halevy, the former head of Mossad, is investigated for incitement comparing the Iranian nuclear program with the threat of the ultra-Orthodox community to Israel, as well as the incitement of academics against the haredi community.

The rabbi did, however, answer questions put to him by the police and declared that acted according to the law and has done nothing to require an investigation of him. He was brought to the Zvulun police station in northern Israel.

MK Michael Ben-Ari (National Union) condemned the investigation of Druckman on Sunday, calling it an attempt to silence rabbis.

“This is something which has never been carried out against academics who call for boycotts against Israel,” he said.

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