Mizrachi Launches Yiddish Aliyah Campaign Aimed At NY’s Hasidic Community



The Religious-Zionist World Mizrachi Movement launched Monday a Yiddish language internet campaign aimed at convincing Ultra-Orthodox Jews, residing in New York, to make aliyah, The Jerusalem Post reports. The clip was slated to be posted to several Yiddish language websites by Tuesday evening.

A video in Yiddish extolling the virtues of the land of Israel was posted to YouTube by Jeremy Gimpel, the organization’s Vice Chairman and a controversial figure among right-wing pro-Israel Americans.

Gimpel told the Jerusalem Post that the increasing threat of modernity posed by the penetration of smartphones and the internet among hasidic groups has created a more receptive audience than may have existed previously. “Smartphones and YouTube allow us to reach communities at large that would never otherwise invite us to speak at their synagogues. Using the internet properly has the potential to change world Jewry,” Gimpel explained.

“My hope for the Yiddish speaking Chassidim is that they begin to see living in Israel as a part of their religious responsibly and ultimately a part of Jewish destiny,” he said.

Speaking to The Jerusalem Post, Gimpel quoted an unnamed Yiddish speaking journalist with whom he said he spoke, that now may be the “right time to reach out to the Satmar Chassidim and other Chassidic sects. Western culture is infiltrating our communities and people are starting to consider Eretz Yisroel [land of Israel] as a real option to raising their families in an uncorrupted Jewish environment. The State of Israel which was once seen as a threat to a Torah based life is being seen as a potential safe haven for people who want to live a Torah based life.”

American-Born Orthodox MK Dov Lipman said that he was “in shock” that Mizrahi was targeting the Yiddish speaking sector.

“Of course we welcome all Jews to Israel but to place resources and effort to motivate this specific population to move to Israel is beyond comprehension,” he told the Jerusalem Post. “The chareidi community in Bet Shemesh lived in harmony with the rest of the population until the yiddish speaking anti-Zionist, extremist population arrived. Efforts should be placed on inspiring Jews who are moderate, tolerant and seek to be part of the broader population – including the mainstream American chareidi population – to Israel and not this shocking and startling new initiative.”

“I wish them well,” Agudath Israel of America spokesman Rabbi Avi Shafran told the Post when informed of the campaign. “But Israel would be a more welcoming place for such Jews if, instead of embarking on a social engineering program to try to change the Israeli charedi way of life, it recommitted itself to supporting the full-time Torah-study that helps protect all its citizens.”

A Satmar spokesman did not immediately respond to a request for comment. A similar call to Borough Park Assemblyman Dov Hikind, a staunch pro-Israel advocate, was not returned.

(Jacob Kornbluh)


  1. A bit of “chutzpah” since the Religious Zionists in Eretz Yisrael are leading the charge to close down yeshiovos, conscript hareidim and hareidiot, and make it a crime of hareidi rabbanim to prepare a kesuba or a get. The truth is that a hareidi wanting to work in the “wider” economy of the secular world is well advised to prefer the United States to Israel.

  2. Satmar already has a community in EY, and has had so since before the establishment of the zionost state. If they are successful, this will result in more Meah Shearim style Yidden leaving in EY and opposing its zionist government.

  3. Rasha Mr. Lipman shows his ugly bigotry in his opposition to any Yiddish speaking Yidden. But who really cares about that lapdog of Lapid. Let more Yiddish speaking anti-Zionists move to EY and oppose the Lipman/Lapid team and its cronies.