What Did HaRav Zilberstein Tell Bennett’s Neighbor In Ra’anana?

HaGaon HaRav Zilberstein

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When Prime Minister Naftali Bennett was elected as prime minister, he chose to remain in his home in Ra’anana rather than move to the official prime minister’s residence in Jerusalem, a move that had serious repercussions for his neighbors as the neighborhood turned into a “security fortress.”

A group of Bennett’s neighbors even submitted a petition to the Supreme Court demanding that he move to the Prime Minister’s Residence in Jerusalem.

One neighbor has even been dealing with a halachic dilemma caused by the many security guards near his home and sent a shaila on the issue to HaGaon HaRav Yitzchak Zilberstein in Bnei Brak.

The shaila, which was published in the Kol Be’Rama monthly, stated: “I live in the city of Ra’anana and recently, due to one of the neighbors becoming famous and being under heavy security, every passage in the area where he lives necessitates a thorough security check by the security guard. Since there’s no shul next to my house, I need to pass by the area, which requires the presentation of my teudat zehut. After the guards allow me through, he notifies the other security guards.”

“It it muttar to pass by the secured area on Shabbos or do I have to worry about transgressing the issur of ‘placing a stumbling block in front of the blind’ or ‘assisting those transgressing an aveirah’ – since the security guards use their electronic devices to notify the other guards of my entry?”

HaRav Zilberstein responded: “If the security guards are doing the right thing and there is clearly a real security risk, it is definitely permissible to pass by the area.”

“But even if they engage in more melachos than what’s strictly necessary due to the accepted procedures, beyond what is needed for security, it seems that you don’t need to refrain from going to shul despite the fact that it will lead to chillul Shabbos.”

Rav Zilberstein compared the situation of walking through the secured area to a situation in which thieves assault someone and he screams out for help. Does the issur of “lifnei evar” apply in that situation since the police will hear his screams and will be mechallel Shabbos to help him? The answer is that it’s muttar. The man doesn’t need to be silent and give up on being rescued from thieves due to the sins of the policemen whom he didn’t even call. There’s proof to this in Shailos V’Teshuvos of the Maharil Diskin, who wrote that a person is not obligated to lose money due to someone else committing an aveira and there’s no issue of “lifnei evar.”

“So regarding the issue of the security guards, since he’s on the way l’sheim mitzvah to daven in shul, and he definitely doesn’t want [the guards] to be mechallel Shabbos, he doesn’t need to refrain from going to shul because the security guards are being mechallel Shabbos because of him,” Rav Zilberstein concluded.

(YWN Israel Desk – Jerusalem)


  1. cowards, not leaving a needed remark and respect for such an incredible Rabbi who will always remain incredible while Bennet will never become incredible….isn’t that amazing….our PM will never be incredible but our Rabbis of blessed history and memory will