“We’ll Kill You:” Anti-Vaxxers Threaten HaRav Kanievsky’s Family Members

HaGaon HaRav Chaim Kanievsky meets with senior health officials about COVID vaccinations for children. (Photo: Shuki Lehrer)

In recent days, the family members of HaGaon HaRav Chaim Kanievsky have been subject to death threats, curses and insults from anti-vaxxers, Yediot Achranot reported on Tuesday morning

Following the Israeli government’s launch of the pediatric vaccination campaign about three weeks ago, the anti-vax discourse has heightened and the anti-vaxxers have chosen the Kanievsky family as a target, especially Reb Yanky Kanievsky, HaRav Chaim’s grandson and main assistant.

Yanky has been taunted on the street with statements such as: “You’re murderers,” “The blood of children is on your hands,” and threats of: “We’ll get you,” We’ll abuse your children.”

Yanky also received a message stating: “You sold Am Yisrael for the sake of money. You used your grandfather to sell our small children and inoculate them. What do you think, that there’s no Elokim b’Shamayim? Your yichus won’t help. Yitzchak also had a wicked son named Eisav. When it’s a matter of dinei nefashos, there’s no proteksia from Hakadosh Baruch Hu.”

Other family members have also received threats via voicemail or text: “Yimach Shimcha,” “We’ll kill you,” Amalek” and a veiled threat: “יש דין ויש דיין.”

One relative found an anti-vax pamphlet outside his door along with threats of: “We’ll kill you,” and “We’ll come to Bnei Brak and then you’ll understand.”

In one of the voice messages received by a family member, an anonymous person issued an ultimatum, saying that a statement must be issued denying HaRav’s Chaim support for vaccination… or at first HaRav Chaim’s ‘papers’ will be thrown in the garbage (the leaflets with HaRav Chaim’s divrei Torah that are distributed to the public], and then.. we’ll wait and see…”

Chareidi reporter Yisrael Cohen told Yediot that the Kanievskys are concerned that HaRav Chaim or a relative could be physically attacked. “They’re used to criticism and pressure from the public but these people are not normal and are unpredictable.”

(YWN Israel Desk – Jerusalem)


  1. When the anti-vaxxers stoop to this kind of behavior, they expose their true characters. They are an embarrassment to all of Klal Yisroel. May they be caught and prosecuted. I support the vaccine, but I also recognize the right to refuse it. The attacks on Rav Chaim do NOT emanate from a source that is consistent with our Torah. These groups made fools of themselves in America a few years ago with the measels outbreak. I would love for them to become obscure voices in the wind who have the right to deny themselves the immunity from diseases, but they should have no effect on others.

  2. This is not “anti-vax”.

    This is about people who are rightfully concerned about children’s health and lives. Everyone knows that children don’t need this.

    Regarding the threats, of course those are wrong, but anyone with half a brain knows that Rav Chaim never really said this. So I highly doubt any of those people would touch Rav Chaim.

  3. all these anti vaxxers are 100% correct!! There is a lot of blood on there hands!!!! They are killing innocent little children. I don’t care what u think about the vaccine but just think for a moment, where is our freedom?? how can someone force something on someone else?!?!?! did you ever hear of “my body, my choice”

  4. Yes “your body, your choice” but not if your body endangers thousands of others!

    “Everyone knows that children don’t need this” – and what about that 6 year old boy who died r”l in Netivot?

  5. @Hakatan are you denying the reports in this article? Or do you admit anti vaxxers have half a brain…I didn’t get your point. Clearly these people are dangerous and rebelling against Hashem with the guise of “concern for their kids”.

    @c2 how dare you suggest it’s correct to kill the gadol hador…are you insane

  6. Stop the anti-Antivaxxer rhetoric. These people are responding to others forcing them to put a proven dangerous chemical mix (not a vaccine m, by anyone except Dr. Falshi and his minions) into someone’s bloodstream where it can wreak havoc.
    When, oh when, will YWN
    Report the news, not corrupted views?

  7. @Hakatan: “Dr.” Hakatan says “everyone knows children don’t need it”. Forgetting the 8300 COVID related hospitalizations have occurred for the age group 5-11 in the USA. Speak for yourself, not “everyone” else

  8. When these people not just ignore Talmidei Chachamim, deny their opinions but threaten people physically, maybe it is time for a cherem in physical and virtual worlds? I wonder though whether this will work? There are so many that they’ll simply form their own communities rather than at least nominally following gedolim as now.

  9. Well once again YWN has done a magnificent job of creating hatred amongst Jews. Was it really necessary to print this story and bring more machloches into Am Yisrael?

    Nothing can be trusted anymore, especially what is published on these news sites. Stop the incitement and stop with this “anti vaxxer” narrative. The amount of sheker that has permeated our Torah world is sickening.

  10. Quoted: “Taking things away from people until they agree to do what you say isn’t giving them choice. It’s punishing them until they concede to your demands. Normally we would refer to this type of behavior as manipulation and abuse.” A noted Gadol said many years ago (in an unrelated event) that the Government of Israel will use the power of Rabbanim to influence the frum Yidden. We have seen it in the past few years with the thousands of frum Yeshiva bochurim enlisting into the army, and now we are seeing it with these vaccines. (Quoted by Rabbi Cohen head of Sfardi Eida Hacharadis this Chanukah regarding the dangers of the vaccine.) If you look in the videos, you will see Yanky holding up papers with words Rav Chaim should answer to the questions. Dr Firer who initially gave his consent is now unreachable. Rebbetzin Kolodetzky reversed her initial opinion about the vaccines after seeing the results. Most frum Israelis don’t use the internet and therefore rely on lay leaders to guide them as they cannot do their independent research on this new MRNa vaccine. The head of Pfizer even stated that Israel was the experiment for the vaccine. Who would take this blindly?

  11. We are so careful when it comes with Kashrus and what we put into our bodies when we eat and drink. Many non-affiliated people think that the kosher symbols signifies that the food was “blessed by a Rabbi”. We know that there are many mashgichim overseeing the production of the foods to ensure that it is fully kosher. Hameivin Yavin.

  12. c2, you exposed yourself. It has nothing to do with freedom — it is a medical issue. You’ve been influenced by the twisted Western way of thinking.

  13. Anyone who even so much as lays even 1 finger on the venerated גדול הדור or any member of the family of our venerated גדול הדור is a despicable savage who is outright חייב מיתה
    All anti vaxxers are cruel people who have total contempt for human life & total lack of respect for other people’s lives & safety.
    We decent honorable citizens have taken all vaccinations including boosters, since we respect sanctity of human life & human dignity and other people’s safety, and we unequivocally strongly support all vaccination mandates for the sake of everyone’s safety & healthy well-being.

  14. Yisroelbe…, “a proven dangerous chemical mix”?!? Proven by whom exactly?
    Bundy and Shomer…, yea, reading fake news on-line is sure a good way to find reliable information (and not listening to the doctors). Yes. The same places where they will inform you that the Holocaust never happened, the Jews blew up the Twin Towers etc. Sure.

  15. Davidthekanoi – If you would’ve kept up with this story in the Israeli news, you would’ve read that the doctors confirmed it was not related to Covid. Since the parents refused an autopsy, they do not know what it was from. (Kikarshabbat.com)

    147 – Anti-Vaxxers, this time, are actually pro-life. A funeral director in Australia reported that he has seen more people die in these last few months from blood clots and heart attacks than ever before, but the government is ignoring the reports. Thousands of people in E”Y have been adversely affected by the vaccines and many have passed away from sudden heart attacks and blood clots. The vaccine lowers the immune system, and people are getting sicker from minor colds. And who knows the long term side effects. Do you know?

  16. Sorry my bad: I am old enough to remember when the hypocrites at YWN used Gestapo to refer to Fauci’s vaccine recommendations.

    Thanks for the correction. It is actually more relevant and pertinent to this article. Overheated rhetoric of YWN Gestapo type comments is what leads to the type of craziness by R’Chaims house. Don’t try to have it both ways.

  17. @davidthekanoi everyone with half a brain knows the vaccine does not prevent transmission
    Therefore it doesn’t protect you from spreading covid. So stop pretending it protects others. It clearly and obviously does not. It protects- somewhat- the individual who takes the vaccine, from severe illness, for the small duration of time that the vaccine lasts. Since children are not at risk, they don’t need the vaccine. As for the six year old, Israel news is now saying he may have died from the flu but I don’t believe they have made the final determination . The first reports blaming covid was so ridiculous I’m surprised people believed it. It was just blamed on covid because that’s the song everyone loves right now.

    To everyone else, it’s quite public knowledge that the great and honorable Rav is being lied to and deceived by members of his family to promote their agenda and line their pockets. He can hardly hear and hardly speak.
    In fact, in the video made public regarding the vaccine for children, there is actually an original clip being circulated
    In which the rav is asked the same question (for the Bracha) loudly in his ear THREE times and finally responds
    They edited it to show just once before he replies. Let’s not make it TOO obvious that the rabbi can’t hear…
    While I have the greatest respect for such a gadol, at this time his Psak regarding vaccination is obviously unreliable. Furthermore I have inside knowledge of a prominent bet din in Israel that was planning to sign a letter saying not to vaccinate and one by one the rabbis backed out because they were being threatened by government officials. They are too afraid of retaliation and false accusations etc.
    so the truth is many many people are against but too fearful to speak up

  18. Hakatan says, “Everyone knows that children don’t need this.”

    Maybe speak for yourself. I don’t agree, so clearly not everyone knows.

  19. I appreciate that YWN editors took the time to read and respond to my comment. Now that you have read my comments please think about it and take it to heart.

    Please, please, please recognize the damage that incendiary and sensationalist headlines and reporting is doing to so many of your readers. Please commit to report the news in and honest and nuanced fashion according to the values of the oilam hayeshivos.

  20. Boy, lots of anger, tensions, ignorance! Shouldn’t we slow down a bit? There’s a lot we don’t know, and precious little we do know. Let’s take stock.

    The label “anti-vaxxer” really doesn’t apply here, though the authors of the article use it rather exclusively. Few if any were making these threats when Rav Kanievski Shlit”a was purported to have encouraged adults to vaccinate against COVID. It’s only the discussion regarding children, about whom there is virtually no medical or scientific justification for this vaccine, that has raised the threat level. So these angry people who are bandying threats about are probably not anti-vaxxers.

    A number of threats quoted were downright evil. But some were of a more sensible nature, and perhaps not really threats at all. For example,

    “You sold Am Yisrael for the sake of money. You used your grandfather to sell our small children and inoculate them. What do you think, that there’s no Elokim b’Shamayim? Your yichus won’t help. Yitzchak also had a wicked son named Eisav. When it’s a matter of dinei nefashos, there’s no proteksia from Hakadosh Baruch Hu.” and

    “You’re murderers,” and “The blood of children is on your hands,” and
    יש דין ויש דיין

    have no threat at all. They imply the accusation that the video charade of Yanky asking Rav Chaim whether children should be vaccinated and being told “tzarich” was exactly that — a charade. This is something almost every sane person who saw that video suspects at least on some level, since sane people know that vaccinating children against COVID is not based on anything related to sanity.

    The statistics on children regarding COVID are by all indications, internationally and locally, way better than those regarding the flu. In the US, for example, no children of normal health died from COVID, and a total of less than 500 with comorbidities died since the beginning of the pandemic. In Germany, where they also have very “scientific” and rational methods for beating the pandemic (and are now mandating vaccines for children), zero children died from COVID. Yes, zero. So it would behoove commenters here to collect their thoughts before shouting sillinesses from the rooftops about that.

    Except for the fact that Rav Chaim is who he is, ie a Gadol HaDor with a well known “connection” to higher spheres, the non-acceptance of his at-face-value dictum to vaccinate children is completely justified. And the presented challenges to that dictum are not against Rav Chaim for issuing it, rather they are against a family member for fooling the people into believing that he issued it. Everyone can believe what they want, so the people who are telling Yanky Kanievsky that he did a terrible avla to the Klal (without the threats) are entitled to do so. The crazies who make threats are obviously not justified, but every controversy will bring out the crazies, especially in Israel.

    So everybody take a chill pill, and THINK before you press the “POST” button…

  21. @crazykanoiy :
    its not both ways.
    its called FREEEDOM!!
    no gestapo enforcing vaccines and no threats of murder either.
    its ONE way!

    You cant blame these anti vaxxers for their threats as they are under attack like NEVER before. and ppl tend to fight stronger in the face of stronger adversity

  22. Fake news. We’re supposed to believe that a bunch of people sent death threats to Rav Kanievsky’s family, they were stupid enough to send them in ways that can easily be traced in our surveillance state, and none of them have been identified and arrested. Right.

  23. @Frumwhere “since sane people know that vaccinating children against COVID is not based on anything related to sanity.”

    Really? And who are you to make this pronouncement? Maybe actually look into the data and see how many children have actually died from COVID. It’s not zero by the way. And while you are at it, can you tell us about your credentials, your medical degree, your advanced knowledge of statistics or maybe a masters in epidemiology.