Rabbi Yoel Wertenshlang, the chief rabbi of Leon, France, received a vicious anti-Semitic letter containing a photo of inmates in a concentration camp. The letter contained a death threat against the rav as well as threats against his kehila, apparently the result of a recent media interview by the rav in which he expressed support for the IDF and expressed opposition to the actions of the PA (Palestinian Authority).
The letter arrived on shabbos and when it was opened, the rav was horrified to see the attached photo alongside which was written “Every Jew will be punished every time the rabbi speaks against the Palestinians”.
The letter contained additional threats against the rabbi and Jews in general. The rav turned the letter over to local police. Local media reports signal French police are taking the letter and the rabbi’s complaint very seriously and forensic experts are trying to establish the identity of the sender.
The rav is quoted by Ladaat.net as saying, “nothing is going to prevent me from speaking out in support of the IDF and Jews in general”.
Haaretz adds the rav also received death threats on Facebook – a “photomontage disseminated online shows rabbi with a revolver pointing at his head, a Star of David on his forehead, and a lighter labeled as containing Zyklon B – the compound used in Nazi gas chambers – being held up to his nostrils.” The photomontage is signed by ‘Bakala LBD’.
(YWN – Israel Desk, Jerusalem)