Tuesday, July 10, 2007

I Don't Believe An Israeli Policeman Actually Wrote This

Dreaming of Moshiach reprints from some newspaper or magazine, a letter from a policeman at the rally against the gay pride parade in Jerusalem. Read it there:

To summarize the letter, it is a confession from a policeman who was at the rally, that the rally was too peaceful for what the media wanted to report, so the police decided to send two police officers dressed up as chareidim (one of whom was the letter writer) to throw stones at the police, so as to manufacture clashes and give the police a chance to clash with the chareidim.

And now this undercover police officer has suffered, and knows that it is God's punishment for what he did, so this is a confession and a plea for forgiveness.

Anonymous son of Anonymous

(and he says he can't give his full name, but that here is his Hebrew name and the name of his mother -- presumably the newspaper changed it to Anonymous son of Anonymous)

One media account of the aforementioned event:

As the rally ended, younger Haredi members began throwing stones at the police. Seven police officers were injured in the fight, including a policewoman who was taken to the hospital for head injuries. Six other officers were treated by paramedics at the scene.

Twelve protesters were arrested. Head rabbis warned there would be more violence when the Pride parade goes ahead as planned.
I would assume that the newspaper (whichever it is) did not manufacture the letter themselves. But, while there have been instances in the past of various agencies dressing up as chareidim or right wingers and instigating, I do not think this letter is authentic. More likely to me (especially in light of the tone of the letter and words like Shlita, etc.) is that someone thought this would be a good way to remove the chillul Hashem from the chareidim having fought with police, and who knows -- thinks the letter writer -- it probably is true as well! Make up a name and mother's name, and we know the newspaper won't really investigate it. The result is that the violence is now the fault of the evil police, who assisted in making the gay pride parade a reality.

The problem is that propagating such false belief encourages three things:
  1. The belief that the police are out to get chareidim, and are evil
  2. The belief that chareidim did no wrong here
  3. The belief that the invective about the gay parade played no role in encouraging this behavior
which then gives a free pass to continue the invective, since it caused no violent reaction. And also gives them more reason to clash in the future, since the evil police are out to get them. Not good.


Daniel Greenfield said...

so essentially you're claiming that the letter is false even though when all is said and done, you have absolutely no proof but you've decided to make these claims anyway

your one citation of Haredi violence here actually comes from Gay.com. Sdom.com wasn't available? Or Baal-Peor.net?

Need I say anymore?

Maybe you should actually do some research into the police brutality in israel and specifically the brutality targeting religious protesters

joshwaxman said...


Sdom.com is actually taken, but it is some Chinese site, and I don't read Chinese.


Seriously, though, I linked to that site because it contains a story that accords with what the letter purportedly from the police officer says:

"At the police station, it was decided to do a terrible thing. 2 policemen will dress up as religious guys and mix in with the religious crowd and will throw rocks on the policemen. By doing this, it will give a very good reason and justification for the police to strike the religious people and to send Yassamnikim on motorcycles, etc. Because of my actions, I was one of the 2 undercovers, the calm protest took to a terrible turn with many innocent Jews getting physically and emotionaly hurt."

Thus, the charedi newspaper itself admits that there was stone throwing at police and that the rally turned violent at the end.

So what does it matter that I cite from Gay.com?

I know well about "police brutality in israel and specifically the brutality targeting religious protesters." But that doesn't make this specific claim automatically credible.

The fact is, it is anonymous, and the newspaper made it even more anonymous, and it is written in a style I wouldn't expect of a non-frum policeman. And it is difficult if not impossible to prove the negative in the absence of any of this identifying information. It just smells fishy to me.

what evidence is there that the letter is true?

Anonymous said...

This article was in the HaEda Hacharid, Gilayon 1400 of Parshat Pinchas.
The story was checked out at the Jerusalem Police station - it was found out that a certain policman got very very sick lately...


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