Jan 2, 2019

Kobi chilul shabbos plans in Tiberias causes a fast day tomorrow

I was initially saving this topic for tomorrow, but then realized that if I wait, some people might miss an opportunity so it is important for me to post it today... you're welcome :-)

Mayor of Tiberias Ron Kobi seems to find every opportunity to push his agenda of turning the sleepy town of Tiberias into a happening place, specifically on Shabbos. The Tiberias Marathon is set to be run this Friday, as it has been for many years already. Kobi is pushing for taking advantage of all the visitors in town for the marathon and the festival surrounding it and calling for a street party to take place on Friday (after the marathon) and Saturday on Kishon St. - this is in the area of the hotels and the boardwalk, where the tourists are and where the start and finish of the marathon is. Kobi says there will be food, wine, live music, a techno D.J., and socializing with a celebratory weekend atmosphere.

Obviously this call for explicit chilul shabbos upset the local Haredi residents and representatives, to which Kobi justified it saying this is not a breach of the status quo as this is only going to happen in the tourist area and not in the residential part of the city. The city will stay open on Shabbos, as it always has been, in the touristy and entertainment areas of the city and he will not allow the Haredi coercion to take over the city.

In response, local mekubal, Rav Dov Kook, has called upon local residents to fast on Thursday as if it were Tisha bAv.
source: Kikar

Most of Tiberias is a very traditional city. I don't know what the non-Haredi residents think about this. Perhaps it is "out of sight, out of mind" - because it is in the hotel area and not the residential area maybe they dont care, or maybe they do care or maybe they like the new mayor and his pushing of such events on Shabbos. The only complaints I see are in the Haredi press from the Haredi residents, not form the general public, unlike with the Shabbos fights in Tel Aviv over small businesses opening in which the local fight was led by secular small business owners who felt they would feel the pressure to open on Shabbos and lose their day off of work.

I am not sure where Kobi is getting the money for this. He says the city is in tremendous debt and right now does not even have money to clean the streets. Maybe he has the party sponsored by businesses or other donors. Or maybe he figures it is an event that will bring money in so it is worth spending money on.

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  1. That sort of event will cause mounds of litter, besides the spiritual pollution.

    1. That's OK. He has an agreement with Ali and Bloch. She will come clean upu

    2. Aren't you snarky. Who cleans up after your spiritual pollution - probably only mashiach can.

  2. I am just a regular visitor to Tveriah since 2017. I am close to Messianic Jews in my beliefs and keeping Shabbat is important to me. I have been spending two weeks in Tveriah right now and what is happening on Shabbat at Kinneret right now is a turn off to me. I hate it. In 2017 and 2018, I was enjoying Shabbat songs on Friday evening and now this? With a bunch of yelling English speaking tourists? There is a deliberate will to desecrate the holy city. I am close to Jewish people and I love the Hassidim. I stand with them against this mayor who is filled with self pride. Not sure I will sleep in Tveriah on my next trip to Israel.


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