Senator Joseph Lieberman
Orthodox Liberal - Pretend Jew


[Web Page Last Revised: Friday, April 28, 2006 01:15 PM]



Lieberman selected as Gore's running mate
Lieberman equivocates on moving U.S. Embassy to Yerushalayim
O Chanukah, O Chanukah, Come Light up the Meidel
Tisha B'av: Just another day for campaigning?
Moshe Rabbeinu: Just another snake oil salesmen?
The difference between the hyperbole and reality
Is the nomination of Senator Lieberman good or bad for Jews?
Saudi Arabia Supports Joe Lieberman for President!

SOME OPPOSING OPINIONS — AND REBUTTALS (after all this is my web page, not Joe's)

I happen to like and respect Joe Lieberman!
I totally disagree with your views on this issue...
As far as wearing a yarmulke is concerned...
As far as Shabbos is concerned...
You're too stupid to have an opinion
As far as everything else is concerned...

Lieberman's Rabbi on Lieberman

AND A FEW WHO AGREE (may they live long and prosper)

Election of a Jewish person for vice-president would be extremely bad news
Confessions of An Orthodox Jewish Former Candidate: Why I Won't Vote for Lieberman
Justice for Jonathan Pollard: Senator Lieberman Page
Jews for Morality: The Lieberman Hoax
Say it ain't so, Joe!

New Item: Arutz-7 News, Monday, August 07, 2000

OBSERVANT JEW TO RUN FOR U.S. VICE PRESIDENT...U.S. Vice President and Democratic party Presidential hopeful Al Gore has chosen Senator Joseph Lieberman (D-Ct.) to be his running mate in the coming national American elections.  Lieberman is ... an openly-religious Jew ... well-known for his insistence on keeping the Shabbat laws ... known for expressing the "moral voice" of the Senate, as when he sharply criticized his party colleague President Bill Clinton's behavior in the Monica affair ... a walking, talking Sanctification of G-d's Name.  He has set an example for Jews all over that it is possible to make a difference and be active in the world, without having to compromise at all in matters of principle....

No, Rabbosai!  The reality is that...

...Al Gore, the man who claims to have invented the Internet, and believes no one but himself should own an automobile (as they are "known" to pollute the environment, and jeopardize the ozone layer); the man who campaigned as one who had "picked, smoked, and ate tobacco" while his sister was purportedly dying from its effects, and now sheds crocodile tears for dear sis, whilst still taking hush money from the "evil tobacco companies"; the man who hugs and kisses Yasser Arafat El Husseini at a morning meeting, and then dons yarmulke to address a group of "Jewish" Liberals in the afternoon...

...has now chosen an "observant Jew" (at least by the Liberal media's definition of the term) to be his running mate in the coming national American elections, as a patently obvious attempt to gain lost Jewish votes.  Mr. Lieberman has, on multiple occasions during the past year, publicly violated the Sabbath laws, appeared without head covering, failed to vote for impeachment of the felon-in-chief, aligned himself with a party whose anti-Semitic policies support terrorists who advocate the destruction of Israel and the slaughter of its entire Jewish population, and has been a walking, talking Chilul HaShem. He has set an example for Jews all over that it is possible to abandon one's G*D, religion, and brethren, whilst claiming to "make a difference and be active in the world", and simultaneously compromising in all matters of principle.

But even were Mr. Lieberman to be the saintly G*D-fearing Torah-observant Jew that he is not, his willingness to align himself with anti-Semitic felons bent on the destruction of Judaism and Jewry would more than negate these positive qualities.

News Item: Tuesday, 8 August 2000 (7 Av 5760)

Lieberman "Backs" Moving Embassy to Jerusalem . . . except . . .Sen. Joseph Lieberman said on Tuesday after being named as algore's vice presidential running mate that he backed moving the U.S. embassy in Israel to Jerusalem. . . . But Lieberman . . . said it would be premature to act now "while there was still a chance of a Middle East peace accord". . . . He said he had long supported moving the U.S. embassy in Israel from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem, but . . . 'Right now, I think it would not be a good idea. . . .

Translation:  Self-designated and media-ordained "Orthodox" Jew "Joe" (not Joseph, for that sounds far too Jewish for vice-presidential material) Lieberman, who publicly violates the Sabbath, and sees no need to cover his head in the presence of G*D Almighty, the "uncompromising supporter of Israel" and "pillar of integrity", simply echoes the anti-Semitic, anti-Israel, and pro-Arab terrorist sentiments of the current liar-in-chief, who is violating U.S. law by his continued refusal to locate the embassy in the capital city of Israel.

Lieberman said in 1996 that if Clinton didn't move the American Embassy to Jerusalem, "I will go there and build it brick by brick." Now, he says it's not the time.

Mr. Lieberman may claim to be an "Orthodox Jew" and "staunch supporter of Israel", but what he is, in actuality, is an "Orthodox (my party über alles ) Liberal", lacking any semblance of integrity.

Not coincidentally, Mr. Lieberman's unequivocal waffling on this issue was unannounced on 7 Menachem Av, the anniversary of the date that the heathen entered and polluted the sanctity of the Holy Temple during the Churban, and the day that Yasser Arafat El Husseini formally signed onto the "Jerusalem Covenant" calling for the "extermination" of all Jews from Jerusalem.

O Chanukah, O Chanukah, Come Light up the Meidel

A few years ago, during the Festival of Chanukah, the Liberal media ran a story about how the liar-in-chief had "saved the life" of a little Jewish girl, by extinguishing the flames of her burning hair, which had ostensibly caught fire from a Chanukah menorah. What they did not show you was how the fire was actually started.

This charade, which put the safety of a little Jewish girl at risk, so that the liar-in-chief could have yet another unmerited "spontaneous" photo-opportunity, took place in the presence of Mr. Joe Lieberman, pillar of integrity. Whether or not he participated in its planning is unknown (by the general public). However, his failure to vehemently protest this blatant child abuse is quite revealing in and of itself.

Tisha B'av: Just another day for campaigning?

Tisha B'Av is a solemn fast day, commemorating the destruction of the first and second Holy Temples, as well as a number of other tragedies which befell the Jewish people on this day. It is preceded by a 3-week period of mourning, during which a number of increasingly severe restrictions apply. Although Tisha B'Av does not have the same strictures as the biblically-ordained Yom haKippurim (Day of Atonements), it is considered in Jewish law as being of such paramount importance that "One who engages in business or work where it is prohibited will not see a blessing from this work" and "One who eats or drinks on Tisha B'Av will not be among those privileged to participate in rejoicing over Jerusalem".

Joe Lieberman campaigned on Tish'a B'Av!

Senator Joseph Lieberman campaigned aggressively in Atlanta and Philadelphia with running mate Al Gore on the solemn fast day of Tisha B'Av.

While aboard Air Force II, Lieberman was seen drinking and chewing on an apparent snack. And he was seen taking refreshment several time later in the day.

Observant Jews abstain from listening to live music during the 3-week period ending with Tisha' Bav. Yet various bands greeted Gore and Lieberman at campaign stops.

There are circumstances under which it is permitted to work on Tisha B'Av, and it's almost certain that Mr. Lieberman was acting with "rabbinical" permission. Similarly, if he was permitted to campaign, he would probably also be exempt from fasting, due to the (self-imposed) danger to health. And, it could be argued that the music was not his choice, that it wasn't played for his benefit, and that he "didn't listen" (or inhale).

However, is campaigning for national office so essential that it can set aside the normal restrictions of the solemn day, a day on which even non-observant Jews fast? Does the pursuit of Liberalism supercede the mourning of Yerushalayim? Would a non-Jew (other than perhaps the amoral Mr. Clinton or Mr. Gore) campaign on the day of their parent or child's funeral?  Would the Liberal press not chastise their callousness were they to do so?

Moreover, Joseph Lieberman has been presented to us (by his campaign officials, and by a complicit media) as an "observant Jew". He is campaigning for the office of "First Jew" in addition to that of Vice-President. His behavior will set the new standard (and limitations) of "Jewish observance" for all American Jews, whether or not his actions are truly representative of (or even sanctioned by) his co-religionists.

Such a man is obligated to set a better example, or to disclaim any and all pretense of being what he obviously is not.

Moshe Rabbeinu: Just another snake oil salesmen?

Now, Joe Lieber(al)man, the self-proclaimed "orthodox Jew" (who doesn't wear a head-covering, publicly violates the Sabbath, ignores the solemn fast of Tisha B'Av, and supports the illegal and immoral imprisonment of a fellow Jew), the "conscience of the Senate" (who fully supports the liar-in-chief), the "friend of Israel" (who supports its destruction by Arab and Leftist forces), has the audacity to compare the felon-in-chief, the only man on earth who is less honest than Clinton, and Martin Luther King to Moshe Rabbeinu! 

Sunday, 27 August, 2000 - Speaking from the pulpit of the Fellowship Chapel church in Detroit, Lieberman said "Americans should break down the 'flimsy lines' separating those of different faiths 'to sing together His holy name'.'' He didn't mention the felonious abuses of power and constant prevarications of Clinton and Gore. Instead, he mis-attributed to them the current economic boom (which actually began with the Reagan tax cuts, was sustained by Alan Greenspan's fiscal restraint, and really took off when the Republicans gained control of Congress and finally provided the "capital-gains" tax relief that the Democrats have opposed all these years), and likened them [Clinton and Gore] to Moses!

"...the Red Sea finally parted and more Americans than ever before walked through behind President Bill Clinton and Vice President Al Gore,'' Lieberman said.... Later, Lieberman recalled how he had spoken at a civil rights rally in Bridgeport, Conn., in the 1960s just before King and that the civil rights leader had remarked, "Very good, young man". "I had actually thought I heard the voice of Moses,'' Lieberman said.

Truly observant Jews refrain from even entering a church or other non-Jewish place of worship. Joe Lieberman has no qualms about attending services and preaching from the pulpit — at least for the purposes of campaigning.

Truly observant Jews recognize that there are substantial differences between Real Judaism and other faiths. Joe Lieberman describes these differences as "flimsy lines", and (apparently) advocates an ecumenical blending of religions — at least for the purposes of campaign rhetoric.

Truly observant Jews eschew corruption, violation of civil (as well as religious) law, and falsehood. Joe Lieberman expresses admiration for those who epitomize these qualities — at least for the purposes of campaign rhetoric.

Truly observant Jews consider Krias Yam Suf (the parting of the Red Sea) to be a nation-defining miracle and revelation of G*D's omipotence. Joe Lieberman (apparently) thinks it was just another television commercial.

Truly observant Jews consider Moshe Rabbeinu to be on a spiritual level unobtainable by any other person prior to or since, and this belief is one of the basic Jewish Principles of Faith. Joe Lieberman thinks that corrupt, dishonest political leaders (as well as idolized "civil rights" leaders) are on a par — at least for the purposes of campaign rhetoric.

The Difference between the hyperbole and reality

As one who actually is a Torah-observant Jew, and who has uncompromisingly remained so despite greatly adverse circumstances, I greatly resent the characterisation of Senator "Joe" Lieberman as an "Orthodox Jew".  As one who has fought for and supported Israel for the past half century, I greatly resent the characterisation of Mr. Lieberman as a "supporter of Israel".  As one who practices, and expects others to practice, total honesty and integrity in all phases of personal life and my dealings with others, I greatly resent the characterisation of the disingenuous Mr. Lieberman as a "pillar of integrity".

Mr. Lieberman may have made a big media show on several occasions of "not campaigning on the Sabbath", but he  frequently appears on the Senate floor on the Sabbath, and appears to use the various electric and electronic apparatus, not to mention an ever-growing list of other apparent public violations of Sabbath laws.

Mr. Lieberman may claim to be observant, yet he has no qualms about appearing in public without the headcovering required by Jewish law, a basic requirement that many "mildly religious" and even "secular" Jews have no difficulty fulfilling.

Mr. Lieberman may claim to be observant, yet he supports "abortion rights" and "gay rights" that are diametrically opposed to Jewish law.

Mr. Lieberman may have "spoken out" in criticism of the immoral and felonious behavior of the current liar-in-chief, but he failed to vote for conviction in the impeachment proceedings. And, as the self-described "president's best friend in the Senate", he has continued to support the unrepentant perfidy of the Clinton regime.

Mr. Lieberman was one of the US Senators who signed a letter to Clinton that he should NOT grant clemency to Jonathan Pollard, despite being presented with voluminous documentary evidence of the trickery, deceit and double-crossing that went into the conviction and sentencing.

Mr. Lieberman may claim to be pro-Israel, yet he saw fit to participate in and lead the "prayers" at a breakfast honouring Yassar Arafat El Husseini, the mass murderer of Jews, Christians, and Muslims, both American and Israeli citizens.  For that matter, what did Mr. Lieberman (who is reported to observe Jewish dietary law) eat at that breakfast?

Mr. Lieberman may claim to be an "Orthodox Jew", but what he is, in actuality, is an "Orthodox Liberal".

It really bothers me that anyone who (occasionally) wears a "skullcap" for the cameras is labeled an "orthodox Jew", and that anyone who actually makes an attempt to follow Jewish law is labeled an "ultra-orthodox extremist" and placed in the same category as the Islamic terrorists who kill women and children in the name of their god.

Republicans are (perhaps justifiably) identified with anti-Semitism because some of them don't like (and discriminate against) Jews.  The Liberals are inaccurately characterised as being "tolerant" because they "accept" Jews who deny their religion (i..e. who have converted to the idolatry of Liberalism).  However, they are far more intolerant than the right-wing, of Jews who stubbornly remain Jewish. Far better to be excluded from a few employment opportunities or country-club membership, than to be denied the right to practice (and forced to denounce) one's religion in the name of Liberalism.

It was (Democrat) Mayor Ditkins who turned a blind-eye to the pogroms, looting, rape, and murder of Jewish residents of New York instigated by (Democrat) "Reverend" Al Sharpton, not (Republican) Mayor Guiliani.  It was (Democrat) Presidents Roosevelt, Truman, Kennedy, Johnson, Carter, and Clinton who betrayed the interests and welfare of their supposed ally, Israel, resulting in the deaths of thousands of Jews. It was (Republican) President Nixon, continually castigated by the Liberal Press as an "anti-Semite", who has been the best American friend that Israel ever had - which isn't saying very much.

On the other hand, the fault must be shared (at least) equally by those self-hating "Jewish" Liberals who have so much influence in the American and Israeli political process, and have abandoned the religion of their forefathers to worship the idol of Socialism.

Is the nomination of Senator Lieberman good or bad for Jews?

On this erev Shabbat Nechamu, rather than send out my usual "Shabbat Shalom u'Mevorach" greeting, I find it imperative to discuss an issue of crucial importance to all of K'lal Yisroel.

A number of years ago, when I tried to explain to someone that an observant Jew was not permitted to participate in an activity in which women were (extremely) immodestly attired, their argument was "I have a Jewish friend, who is so religious that she lives on a kibbutz, and she wears a bikini!"  No amount of reasoning could convince this person that her friend was not at all "religious", that most kibbutzim were in fact vehemently anti-religious, and that observant Jewish women do not wear bikinis in public. She knew better.

Whether or not Mssrs. Gore and Lieberman are successful in their bid for the highest office in the land, with the emphasis of the Democratic Party and the media on Mr. Lieberman's (totally inaccurate and disingenuous) claim to be an "Orthodox Jew", we shall soon hear "Joe" Lieberman's activities cited as the standard for Jewish practice. 

The next time an observant Jew tries to explain to his employer that he can't work on the Sabbath, Biblically-ordained Holy Day, or the solemn fast of Tisha B'Av, he will be told "Joe Lieberman went to work today".  When he tries to explain that he cannot remove his headcovering even indoors, he will be told "Joe Lieberman doesn't wear a hat".  When he tries to explain that he cannot travel or use electricity on the Sabbath, he will be told "Joe Lieberman does".  When he tries to explain that he isn't permitted physical contact with a woman other than his spouse even to shake hands, he will be told "Joe Lieberman does".  When he refuses to eat non-kosher food, he will be told "Joe Lieberman does". Etc.

And the result will be that truly observant Jews will be polarized, hated, castigated, and persecuted, even more so than they are currently — for nothing more than practicing their religion!

In the event that the Democrats prevail in the upcoming presidential elections, G*D forbid, even though the vice-President has virtually no political power (unless Mr. Gore should honour us with his demise), the Jews will be blamed for every failed policy that comes out of the Liberal White House.  Consider the current regime, in which Mr. Clinton has surrounded himself with self-hating anti-Semitic "Jewish" cabinet members and advisers.  Even though the Arabs couldn't ask for a better friend than Ms. Albright and Mr. Rubin, they constantly cite their "Jewishness" as the reason that Mr. Clinton hasn't lent even more support to their [the Arabs] genocidal activities and goals.  They will have a field day with an "Orthodox Jew" in the vice-presidency.

This of course, will force our "uncompromising man of integrity" to distance himself as much as possible from anything that smacks of "Jewishness", even more so than "Joe" (not Joseph, for that sounds too "Jewish") has already done.  The little amount of verbal support that "Joe" has lent to Israel's survival will disappear.  The little amount of verbal support that "Joe" has given to issues such as school vouchers will disappear (as it already has in his recent speeches).  And there will be no more mention, or even thought, of equal employment opportunity for Sabbath observers, or the availability of kosher food in government kitchens, or the protection of unborn children from murder-of-convenience, or the long overdue release of illegally and unjustly-imprisoned Jonathan Pollard.

Instead, "Joe" Lieberman will become even more supportive of "the Palestinian cause", more critical of his "ultra-religious-right-wing-extremist-enemies-of-peace" brethren, more "Christian" than a southern Baptist, and more crimson than an Alabama footballer.  

But all this will make no difference to die-hard anti-Semites.  There will be a strong backlash, and the Jews will be blamed for the failed socialist policies of the Democratic party (just as they were in post-war Germany), and there will inevitably be a repeat of the events that occurred in Europe during the first half of this century!  Or worse.

Why did Mr. Gore select "Joe" Lieberman as his running mate?  A number of possibilities come to mind.  Perhaps the Democrats are concerned that even Liberal "Jews" are disenchanted with Mr. Clinton's Middle Eastern policies, and are hoping to lure back the "faithful".  Perhaps the Democrats are concerned that the nation is disenchanted with Mr. Clinton's extramarital exploits, and are seeking to preempt the Republican Party's "moral stance" by selecting a "religious" and "pious" running-mate. Perhaps Mr. Lieberman is simply being rewarded for his loyalty to "mien Party über alles", and his complete abandonment of the teachings of his professed religion.  Most likely, it is all of these, and a transparent attempt to create a situation of "Vote Democratic" or be accused of "anti-Semitism". [This from the chosen and supportive political party of Jew-hater Jesse Jackson, pogromist Al Sharpton, genocide-advocate Calypso Louie Farakhan, and final-solutionist William Jefferson Clinton.]

Another very strong possibility is that the Democrats expect to lose this year, and therefore don't care whom they nominate (as with the 1984 Mondale-Ferraro ticket which featured the "first female vice-presidential nominee of a major U.S. party").  It may as well be a "token Jew" this time, someone whom they can later use as a scapegoat for their losses, whilst simultaneously claiming "progressiveness".

Yet, despite these hypocrisies and clear and present dangers, many spokesmen for Jewish groups (reform, conservative, and "orthodox") have expressed chauvinistic delight at Mr. Lieberman's selection.  I presume that these same groups are equally proud that Ms. Lewinsky, Meyer Lanski, Uri Avneri, Karl Marx, and "Goldberg the professional wrestling clown" are "Jewish".

The selection has been made, and there is no way of undoing it.  Mr. Lieberman will run on the Democratic Party ticket this year, and he may be our next vice-president.  But there is no reason to rejoice, or to vote for a continuation of the same anti-Semitic policies that we've been cursed with for the past eight years.  It is cause for great mourning — at this enormous Chilul HaShem, and its inevitable repercussions.

Saudi Arabia Supports Joe Lieberman for President!

In an article published in the London-based Saudi daily Al-Sharq Al-Awsat on 19 January 2003, columnist Walid Abu Murshid cites four reasons why Arabs should welcome the candidacy of Senator Joseph Lieberman for President of the United States.  The following are excerpts from the article, as provided by MEMRI (Middle East Media Research Institute, www.memri.org):

"The reserved reaction of the American Jews to the announcement of Joseph Lieberman, the orthodox Jew, of his candidacy for the presidency encourages the preference for the candidacy for more than one reason.

"Reason One: The Jews Will be Blamed for Everything...  - this fear which could lead the Jewish president to offer the Palestinians what was not offered by the sole Catholic president (John Kennedy) and the heads of all the Protestant denominations who followed him to the White House...

"Reason Two: He Must Prove His Americanism over His Jewishness ... The most visible proof for this would be the settlement of the Middle East conflict away from the flagrant bias of his Jewishness and in keeping with American interests in the Middle East.

"Reason Three: Good for Ambitions of Non-Christian Minorities in the U.S. ... If the American openness is such that it would permit giving the management of its national affairs to a Jew, it would augur well for the ambitions of non-Christian minorities.

"Reason Four: Could Ignite Antisemitic Trends in the U.S. ... could ignite antisemitic trends which would force the Zionist organizations in America to launch a confrontation with the Protestant, Anglo-Saxon 'establishment' in America.  Any 'side' struggle involving the Zionist organizations inside the United States would, in the long run, reduce the Zionist influence in Washington."

SOME OPPOSING OPINIONS (AND REBUTTALS —after all this is my web page, not Joe's)

[Note: Although it is normally proper to accredit one's sources, I have opted not to do so in this instance, in order to save the authors from embarrassment.]

"I happen to like and respect Joe Lieberman!"

Just what is it you find so appealing about "Joe" Lieberman?

Is it his hypocritical (and totally false) claim to be an Orthodox Jew, which serves no purpose other than to characterise those who actually are observant Jews as "ultra-orthodox-right-wing-extremists" or "wackos"?

Is it his hypocritical claim to be a supporter of Israel, while he consistently supports the Liberal agenda of destroying the Jewish state, and supporting the murderous Arab terrorists who spuriously claim that they have been dispossessed from land which neither they nor their ancestors ever owned or inhabited?

Is it his showmanship in "criticising" the liar-in-chief's felonious behavior, while adhering to the Democratic party line that perjury, bribery, suborning of justice, and sexual assault "don't rise to the level of impeachable offenses?"

Is it his hypocritical pretense to be a "pillar of integrity", whilst simultaneously claiming (and proving) to be "the president's best friend in the Senate"?

Or do you just happen to like the man's tailor?

"I totally disagree with your views on this issue. I think that your perception is totally colored by your political views."

Certainly my perception is coloured by my political views, as is everyone's.  More important, it's coloured by my religious views.  I fail to see how a person who doesn't even wear a yarmulke can be considered an "orthodox Jew", much less one who publicly violates the Sabbath, and various other aspects of Jewish law on which Chazal placed great emphasis.

My prediction, that Mr. Lieberman will distance himself from "Jewish" issues, has already proven true, as he has (since his selection as algore's running mate) back-pedaled, equivocated, and jumped-the-fence on his previously espoused views regarding school vouchers and [obeying US law by] moving the US embassy to the capital of Israel.

My description of the anti-Semitic advocacies and policies of the Democratic Party, and those expressed and practiced by its membership is a matter of record, not opinion. At least the anti-Semites amongst Republicans (which I am not) are honest enough to admit they don't like Jews, rather than trying to reshape Judaism into a form of secular christianity, so that they can profess to tolerate it. Furthermore, the Republican party distances itself from the overt anti-Semites who may happen to vote Republican, whereas the Democratic Party embraces and honours those anti-Semites who vote "Democratic".

My fears and predictions of inevitable backlash were expressed almost verbatim by a gentleman who considers himself to be a card-carrying Liberal, and who considers Clinton-Gore-Lieberman to be conservatives no different from Bush. Where there is a meeting of minds between the far Left and the far Right, the truth is probably nigh at hand

As far as wearing a yarmulke is concerned, according to most halachic authorities it is midas chasidus, an act of piety, not required by halacha.

So, that which appears in Orach Chaim ["A man must not walk even as much as arbah amot or utter a single holy word with head uncovered..."] is not a requirement, but simply an act of "chasidus"?

According to Rabbi Binyomin Forst in The Laws of B'rachos (with the haskamot of Rabbi Abraham Pam, Rabbi Shimon Shwab, Rabbi Moshe Halverstein, Rabbi Yechezkiel Roth, and Rabbi Moshe Stern):

"A male is prohibited from reciting a b'racha while his head is uncovered. It is similarly prohibited to pronounce the name of Hashem or to study Torah without a head covering"

"The halacha requiring a head covering is not limited merely to the recital of b'rachos. One must cover one's head at all times. Admittedly, in the Talmudic era, the wearing of a head covering was optional and fell within the category of midas chasiddus — an act appropriate [only] for the pious. Poskim have concluded, however, that today the wearing of a head covering is obligatory and not a matter of choice. [Y'chave Da'as (4:1), Taz 8:3, Igros Moshe (O.C. 1:1)] The widespread acceptance of this custom over many centuries has imbued it with the significance of a halachic requirement. Indeed, covering one's head has assumed the status of symbolically demonstrating one's adherence to mitzvos."

Sefardic and Lubavitch authorities rule similarly in published writings.

Furthermore, is it too much to expect that the nation's "First Jew" display the same "measure of piety" that has been practiced by Jews from the time of the Rishonim until the advent of Reform "Judaism" in 19th Century Europe, and is still practiced by most, if not all, observant Jews today?

Furthermore, Rav Moshe Feinstein rules in his responsa on this basis that it  is permitted not to wear a yarmulke at work if it will create difficulties for the person in his professional circumstances.

In Igros Moshe (O.C. 1:1), R' Moshe Feinstein Zt"l states that the wearing of a head covering today is obligatory and not a matter of choice. If it were to be optional, there would be no need for the leniency that you cite, which obviously refers to exceptional circumstances.

What "difficulties" would be created by Mr. Lieberman wearing a head-covering in public? It is (far too) well-known that he is ostensibly an "Orthodox Jew".  If  I'm not ashamed (or afraid) to wear a yarmulke (much less a simple head-covering) in Mormon and Baptist dominated southern Arizona, or in white supremacist dominated Idaho and Montana, or in Arab and secular "Jewish" dominated Eretz Yisroel, or in the streets of Cairo, what possible justification can Mr. Lieberman have for not wearing a head-covering while simultaneously campaigning as an "Orthodox Jew"?

Both Mr. Clinton and Mr. Gore have no qualms about donning a yarmulke when appearing at a "Jewish" function, yet Mr. Lieberman sees fit to rely on a (not universally accepted) heter to avoid doing so?

Even the pope wears a yarmulke at work!

As far as Shabbos is concerned, he has guidance of rabbinic authorities as to what he may or may not do. I know as a fact that when he remains in the Senate late on a Friday, he walks a number of miles rather than ride in a car.

Even assuming that Mr. Lieberman's Sabbath activities are sanctioned by (some) rabbinic authorities, a public figure (especially the nation's "First Jew") should be held to a higher standard, all the more so when his actions (or inactions) affect all of us.  The employers of other Jewish persons will not make such fine distinctions between what is permissible (according to some authorities) and what is not.  This will result in "ordinary" Jews being forced to violate the Sabbath, or lose their jobs. And Mr. Lieberman will no longer (if he ever did) support legislation to prevent this occurring. 

As to his "walking a number of miles rather than ride in a car", baruch HASHEM that there are some compromises he has not yet made.

You don't have sufficient knowledge or understanding of halacha to make such judgements.

I don't presume to make any halachic rulings, but only to apply those rulings made, and published, by widely-respected Rabbanim. If their written words (which appear to contradict yours) do not reflect their opinions, something is very "rotten in Denmark". On the other hand, if I'm not qualified to understand their very clear and unambiguous language, I'm also not qualified to understand yours!

When well-known and widely-recognized Rabbinic authorities rule in published writings that it is obligatory for a Jew to wear a head-covering, except in certain well-defined adverse circumstances, I find it very difficult to accept your statement that it is "optional" for one campaigning as an "observant Jew" to do so.

Would you criticise me as "unqualified to make such judgements" were I to agree with you on this issue? Is the media, who has now redefined (and lowered the standard of acceptable) Jewish observance to conform to the "uncompromising" untraditional activities of Joe Lieber(al)man, qualified to make such a determination? Or is this simply another example of the Liberal definition of "freedom of speech" for those who preach the party line, but not for those who dissent?

One should not be so hasty to judge others.

None of my comments have been formed in haste, but only after long and painful consideration of the facts, of the words which I have employed to express them, and of the possible repercussions of expressing that which must be expressed. Contrast this with Mr. Lieberman's willingness to attack the opposition, and anyone who doesn't march to the Liberal goosestep, with slanderous accusation and innuendo.

In fact, my initial comments on this issue were very reserved. However, in the short time since Mr. Lieberman's candidacy was announced, he has managed to dispel any doubts as to where his priorities, commitment, and beliefs lie. Every verifiable report of his latest actions, every publicised speech that he makes, and every mendacious and evasive press release from his campaign managers, irrefutably proves the points I have attempted to make herein.

As far as positions are concerned, V.P. candidates must in a public way fall in line with the presidential candidate.

Why?  Either the man is a "pillar of moral integrity" or he is a disingenuous politician. If he was selected as Mr. Gore's running mate to serve as a "yes man", why has he been presented to the public as an "independent", an "orthodox Jew", and a "pillar of integrity"? For that matter, why wasn't a robot selected for the position?

I think Jews in America should stop being afraid of their shadows and this selection is evidence of that.

It is not our shadows we fear, but the constant attempt to convert us (often under threat of death) to the religion of the day, be it the idolatry of biblical times, christianity, or the god of socialism. Besides, it is Mr. Lieberman, not I, who is apparently afraid (or perhaps simply ashamed) to wear a yarmulke, refrain from campaigning on Tisha B'Av, or vote his "conscience".

Joseph Lieberman is a proud Jew and I think it is inappropriate of you to castigate him.

Ehud Barak is also a "proud Jew", as was Meyer Lansky.  "Pride goeth before destruction, and a haughty spirit before the fall." Mishlei 16:18

Were I to remain silent on this issue, that would be inappropriate.

The political party with which Mr. Lieberman has chosen to align himself has no qualms about gratuitously castigating and slandering the opposition, including truly observant Jews, at every possible opportunity. Mr. Gore is a prime example of such behavior.  If "candidates must fall in line", we can expect Mr. Lieberman to follow suit, and he has already done so, adding to his growing list of "unorthodox" middos.

Additionally, why is it "inappropriate" to express serious concerns about serious issues?  Are only Liberals allowed to express their opinions, and "castigate" the opposition?  And when did factual observation become castigation?


In an interview with Arutz-7, Rabbi Barry Freundel (U.S. Senator Joe Lieberman's own rabbi) disagreed with some of Lieberman's public moral positions because, he says, they're against the Torah - and Rabbi Barry Freundel said, "If people decide not to vote for him because they don't like his politics, I'm perfectly happy."

Rabbi Freundel said that Lieberman has admitted to him through third parties that he was wrong to say on one of North America's biggest radio programs that "there is no ban whatsoever" in Judaism against intermarriage, but more than a week later Lieberman has yet to admit his mistake publicly.  Freundel hopes he does, but "I'm not a political adviser to Joe Lieberman."

Freundel said that Lieberman's statement that Judaism allows intermarriage is "absolutely not in keeping with halacha" [Jewish law].  He says it's a "basic point" in Judaism and "I don't know how he could have missed it.

Freundel said he also disagrees with Lieberman's positions permitting abortion and against moving the U.S. embassy now from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem.  "Of course, it should be" moved.  He also disagrees with Lieberman's stand on Jonathan Pollard, in jail in the U.S. on charges of spying for Israel.  Lieberman wrote a letter to Bill Clinton urging him to deny clemency, even though many Jewish leaders have called Pollard's sentence excessive.  "A lot of people at the synagogue disagree" with Lieberman.

Admittedly, there is considerably more to the interview than these few statements, and Rabbi Freundel still appears to consider Mr. Lieberman to be a "good Jew" (at least in a few areas). But there is certainly enough here to refute those who argue that Joe Lieber(al)man has Rabbinical permissions for his heretical positions.

AND A FEW WHO AGREE (may they live long and prosper)

Election of a Jewish person for vice-president would be extremely bad news

Confessions of An Orthodox Jewish Former Candidate: Why I Won't Vote for Lieberman

Justice for Jonathan Pollard: Senator Lieberman Page

Jews for Morality: The Lieberman Hoax

Château MezcalDivrei TorahEretz Yisroel