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Draft Agreement Reached with the Women of the Wall Organization

kosThe Women of the Wall (WoW) organization has been hosting rosh chodesh tefilos at the Kosel for decades but they only began receiving widespread media coverage when they defied the regulations. When the women began wearing tallis and tefilin and trying to take Sifrei Torah from the men’s area of the Kosel they began receiving international media coverage. This led to additional support as an increasingly audible chareidi outcry amid a growing monthly support= base for their rosh chodesh davening.

It is now being reported that Cabinet Secretary Avichai Mandelblit, who has been appointed to become Israel’s next attorney general, mediated the agreement that is being tolerated by the chareidi parties. This agreement is likely to be approved at the next cabinet meeting, scheduled for Sunday, 21 Shevat.

It is pointed out the current document is a draft and changes may occur but at present WoW has agreed to back down from its demands to permit egalitarian prayer at the Kosel. The agreement calls for the establishment of a new prayer area which will be at the southern area of the Kosel, north of Robinson’s Arch and south of the Mughrabi Gate. This area will be for egalitarian prayer, for men and women without a mechitzah. The area in essence will be a continuation of the Kosel Plaza but not connected to it.

The agreement stipulates the women may have a minyan there every day while wearing tallis and tefilin and read from a Torah. To date this was prohibited and met with harsh objections from Kosel Rav Rabbi Shmuel Rabinowitz.

While some laud the draft agreement, others lament it, however not all for the same reason.

Rabbi Dr. Yuval Cherlow, a prominent name in the dati leumi community, fears the new area will have a negative impact on achdus of Am Yisrael. He explains that by the women agreeing to move to an area that is not under the jurisdiction of the Kosel rav, in essence they have handed the chareidim total control over the Kosel.

Rabbi Cherlow stresses the move will simply further divide Am Yisrael and this is an unwanted result of the agreement which many women feel represents a victory.

(YWN – Israel Desk, Jerusalem)

6 Responses

  1. Obviously the reformers have damaged the Jewish people and brought about the holocaust in Germany, now we have them here?

    Get rid of the Cancer before it spreads.

  2. I have personally seen goyim have more kavod for the kosel than these so called Jewish women. Rabble rousers is a better term for them. This is a sad day for Am Yisrael.

  3. To luckshun kugel. And you know the reason for the Holocaust because….And, no, I am not in favor if this agreement; I just don’t respect someone who “knows” the reason for the Holocaust. To act as if one knows is the height of ga’avah and chutzpah.

  4. what planet is this rav Cherlow on? There is no achdus with WOW who are doing their best to disrupt davening at the Kotel.WOW is led by anti-Israel, far leftists who have led some naïve American women into believing their agenda is “religious freedom”.We don’t need this group disrupting davening anymore .The non-frum movements are fading quickly everywhere -baruch H’ hopefully even their ‘section’ will fade fast.

  5. Cherlow is part of Tzohar and supports YCT/conservodox/open orthodox movement.

    I haven’t seen the text but the bigger concern are the rumor reform and conservative movement will be officially recognized.

    which minister will be officially in charge of the south plaza?

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