Sisterhood Blog

Power of the Purse Needed to Change Kotel Policy?

By Debra Nussbaum Cohen

Women of the Wall

Anat Hoffman’s arrest at the Kotel and alleged rough treatment by Jerusalem police, on October 16, sparked immediate strong reaction among American Jews, though not from every group expected.

Many of those outraged by her arrest — for “disturbing the public order” at Judaism’s holiest site for wearing a tallit and leading other women in prayer — said it should serve as a wake-up call to Diaspora Jews complacent about the treatment of women at a site holy to all Jews. It is treated as an ultra-Orthodox synagogue by those who run it and so does not permit non-Orthodox women to pray at the Kotel in a way that conforms to their own religious practice.

Dan Brown, creator of eJewishPhilanthropy, wrote that Hoffman’s arrest was “a tectonic event” that we will look back on years hence and recognize as “the tipping point on conversations” about “the nature of a democratic society here in Israel.”

In an emphatic article on his site, he excoriated political and organizational Jewish leaders for remaining silent on the issue, and said that “the silence needs to stop.”

Jewish organizations, which can wield impressive influence on the government of Israel when they choose to, have not said what they are willing to do to pressure Israeli officials to change current policies at the Kotel.

Read more


Permalink | | Share | Email | Print | Filed under: sisterhood, ejewishphilanthropy, dan brown, anat hoffman kotel




Find us on Facebook!
  • Is pot kosher for Passover. The rabbis say no, especially for Ashkenazi Jews. And it doesn't matter if its the unofficial Pot Day of April 20.
  • A Ukrainian rabbi says he thinks the leaflets ordering Jews in restive Donetsk to 'register' were a hoax. But the disturbing story still won't die.
  • Some snacks to help you get through the second half of Passover.
  • You wouldn't think that a Soviet-Jewish immigrant would find much in common with Gabriel Garcia Marquez. But the famed novelist once helped one man find his first love. http://jd.fo/f3JiS
  • Can you relate?
  • The Forverts' "Bintel Brief" advice column ran for more than 65 years. Now it's getting a second life — as a cartoon.
  • Half of this Hillel's members believe Jesus was the Messiah.
  • Vinyl isn't just for hipsters and hippies. Israeli photographer Eilan Paz documents the most astonishing record collections from around the world:http://jd.fo/g3IyM
  • Could Spider-Man be Jewish? Andrew Garfield thinks so.
  • Most tasteless video ever? A new video shows Jesus Christ dying at Auschwitz.
  • "It’s the smell that hits me first — musty, almost sweet, emanating from the green felt that cradles each piece of silver cutlery in its own place." Only one week left to submit! Tell us the story of your family's Jewish heirloom.
  • Mazel tov to Chelsea Clinton and Marc Mezvinsky!
  • If it's true, it's pretty terrifying news.
  • “My mom went to cook at the White House and all I got was this tiny piece of leftover raspberry ganache."
  • from-cache

Would you like to receive updates about new stories?




















We will not share your e-mail address or other personal information.

Already subscribed? Manage your subscription.