Jump to Main ContentJump to Primary Navigation

Chief Rabbi kicks off in unsporting fashion

    Rabbi Lau
    Rabbi Lau

    Outrage was directed at Israel’s newly elected Chief Rabbi this week, after comments made by him, and widely perceived as racist, came to light.

    David Lau, the new Ashkenazi Chief Rabbi, told yeshiva students that they should not watch basketball or take an interest in the achievements of the players, many of whom are black, or — in the derogatory Hebrew term — kushim.

    “Why do you care whether these kushim who are paid in Tel Aviv beat the kushim who are paid in Greece,” he asked.

    Itzik Shanan, the founder of Let’s Kick Racism Out of Israeli Football organisation, described this as a “poor example to everyone who cares about Israel, about sport, and about our society.”

    Another comment suggested that “there are a lot of things that the Chief Rabbi can do for the welfare of the ‘strangers’ among us, and it’s a shame that one of the first things we hear… was against the ‘other.’”

    Among politicians condemning the remarks, was the Ethiopian female MK Pnina Tamano-Shata of Yesh Atid.

    Supporters of Rabbi Lau say he was not being racist, but stressing that players for Israeli teams are not actually Israelis, and also played down the offensiveness of “kushim”.
    The Chief Rabbinate declined to comment.

Israel

Shabbat shop ban demand

Anshel Pfeffer

Thursday, April 27, 2017

Shabbat shop ban demand
Israel

Israel fire eyewitness: 'We were trying to out-...

Orlando Radice

Thursday, December 1, 2016

Israel fire eyewitness: 'We were trying to out-...
Israel

Arabs and Palestinians around the world celebra...

JC Reporter

Friday, November 25, 2016

Arabs and Palestinians around the world celebra...
Israel

‘Gifts for Bibi’ investigation is ‘in final straight’

Anshel Pfeffer

Wednesday, January 25, 2017

‘Gifts for Bibi’ investigation is ‘in final straight’
Israel

Meet the rabbi that's making waves

Tim Marshall

Thursday, December 1, 2016

Meet the rabbi that's making waves
Israel

Tens of thousands evacuated as bush fires rage ...

JC Reporter

Thursday, November 24, 2016

Tens of thousands evacuated as bush fires rage ...
Israel

Israel on fire: Counting cost of a nationwide i...

Anshel Pfeffer

Thursday, December 1, 2016

Israel on fire: Counting cost of a nationwide i...
Israel

Israeli navy submarine deal could be sunk

Anshel Pfeffer

Israeli navy submarine deal could be sunk
Israel

New cases for the Negev's genetic detective

Nathan Jeffay

New cases for the Negev's genetic detective