Oct 28, 2014

Yeshiva Zionism courses to soon start

The Ministry of Education has come through with its new requirements for yeshivot to get funding for foreign students.

A year ago the Ministry of Education announced that it will revoke the cancellation of the funding received for foreign students in yeshivot, but the funding will require yeshivot to give classes in Zionism and take the students on a certain number of trips to army bases and heritage sites.

The Ministry of Education has now sent out a letter to roshei yeshivot and heads of institutions letting them know of the new requirements.

The requirements include:
 - a visit to a heritage site
 - a visit to a Holocaust institution
 - a visit to the Knesset or Supreme Court or some other governing office
 - a visit to an army or border police unit

For heritage sites, the following are approved for this purpose:
 - Kotel
 - Shimon Hatzaddik's grave
 - cave of Sanhedrin
 -grave of Rav Ovadia MiBartenura
 -grave of Zecharya Hanavi
 -Yad Avshalom
 - cave of Eliyahu Hanavi
 - grave of Rambam
 -cave of Rabbi Akiva
 -cave of Rav Chiya and snos
 - grave of Rashbi
 - cave and spring of Rashbi
 - Jewish cemeteries
 - graves of Rav Yosi and Rav Yehoshua ben Chananya
 - old Synagogue
 - new synagogue

for the Holocaust sites, included are: Yad Vashem, Massua Museum, Yad Mordechai Museum, Bet Trezin, Museum of the Ghetto fighters

for the governing offices, included are: Knesset, Supreme Court, government offices, local authority offices - it would have to be noted who from the office led the group and what was included.

If a yeshiva wants to visit a site not included in the list, they can contact the Ministry and clarify if that site meets the requirements and can be counted.

Obviously, the roshei yeshivot and askanim are upset at this intervention in the educational programs of the yeshivot.
source: Kikar

the heritage sites look pretty easy to accomplish. Most yeshiva guys go to most of those places anyway. And they are  places the yeshivot should generally not have any problem with. The Holocaust Museums as well.

the army bases and the government offices could be a problem.

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  1. True, that most Yeshivot anyway would go and know of the religious sites, which, of course, is very good; but as you say, the govt, etc. sites might be a problem, especially the notorious supreme court and knesset which has lost its Jewishness. That's the 'bad' part of taking govt. money. Is it really worth it?

  2. SB, Beit ShemeshOctober 28, 2014 5:29 PM

    Read the Kikar article, he makes a very good point. They can no longer claim that it's because there's no money. (Which was in any case laughable because the chutznikim are very good for the economy.) This is pure social engineering on people whose way of life they don't like/are afraid of.

  3. Who will do the teaching? If not actual non-chareidim then it will be quite easy to pervert the program:

    for the Holocaust sites, included are: Yad Vashem,

    Here is the museum put up to the Holocaust the Zionists caused God to bring on us!

    Yad Mordechai Museum,

    Here is the monument to evil people who flouted God`s will and established Israel.

    .: Knesset,

    Here is the centre of the Zionist wickedness

    - a visit to the Knesset or Supreme Court or some other governing office

    Here wicked so-called judges sit and pervert our Torah in order to destroy i.

    - a visit to an army or border police unit

    Here are fools who think they are the real defense around here when we actually are.

  4. Wouldn't only the foreign students be required to fulfill these studies?

    At first I thought that it could backfire on the State, because there's no reason why rabbeim couldn't include criticism in their shiurim of those places visited. Even if only approved tour guides had to be used for the tours, there is no reason why rabbeim could not as their own 2 cents after the students trips, and tour guides attempts at glorifying the State, and secularizing the Holy sites.

    Furthermore, the visits to Holy sites might help improve students knowledge of Na"Kh. ;-)

    1. I thought about your first point (more specifically, are Arabs exempt from these requirements).

      The answer is simple. A country owes its own citizens certain things, including an education. Non-citizens do not need to be funded by the government. So if they want money, there are strings attached, as there often are with money.

    2. There are strings attached with money. Perhaps this will push these yeshivoth to work on funding, and slimming down their budgets. And, yeah, I know. There's just isn't a lot of money out there anymore.

  5. What a stupid, childish requirement.

    This will certainly backfire and anyone subjected to this nonsense will be less likely to think positively of the State.

    1. Backfire, yes.

      I can see it now,...a State approved tour guide trying to secularize Meron! The bachurim will surely start rolling their eyes, and tuning him out. Then later they'll get him to dance with them. Eventually, the direction of influence will be reversed. :-)

      Look at Birthright, and who took part in founding it. It has backfired. Instead of indoctrination into secular, Israeli, State loyalism, at least some of these young Jews have been ending up in yeshivas. :-)

  6. Sounds like atypical 8th grade or high school yeshiva graduation trip. Get acquainted with the country.
    Could be done first days of Bein Hazemanim or begin the zman a day or two earlier.


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