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JEWISH CONVERSION BY FAX

January 9th, 2013 · No Comments

Calls for the removal of a Shas television ad, based on claims that the ad is racist and demeaning towards Russian immigrants, were met with compromise and understanding by the leaders of Shas, who after initially defending the ad, agreed to the appeals of Central ElecDid Shas go too far with ‘racist’ campaign ad?

Ad shows Russian bride receiving a conversion certificate by fax machine after calling a conversion hotline number • Shas says ad is meant to criticize the state’s conversion system • Lapid: Ad is clear example of ignorant Judaism preaching hate.

Shlomo Cesana and Israel Hayom Stafftion Commission Chair, Elyakim Rubinstein, to remove the spot.The ad in question, which aired Tuesday night, depicted a wedding ceremony between an Israeli and a Russian immigrant. The wedding was put on hold as the couple waited for a fake conversion certificate to be faxed to the bride.

 
Party leaders Eli Yishai and Aryeh Deri explained to the Elections Committee that the broadcast was not directed against any specific group or community but was rather “intended to convey a message about the danger to the country’s Jewish identity due to fictitious conversions and mixed marriages.”

MK Nino Absedze of the Labor party, who was born in the Soviet Union, filed a complaint with the CEC calling the ad “racist” and “demeaning to Russian immigrants”.

“To my astonishment, I saw that this ad is racist and portrays the immigrant population in a ridiculous light” wrote Abesadze in her petition. She added that it is difficult to believe that a party in Israel in this age can present in, “such a simplistic way an issue that is so painful and complex.”

Amid the outcry, Shas stood by the ad, saying it was not aimed at one specific group but rather was a way to convey a much larger message about current risks to Israel’s Jewish identity. “The television spot did not say one bad word about anyone. Intermarriage and fictitious conversions can lead to assimilation and loss of the Jewish identity of the state. A country which fights against assimilation abroad cannot allow assimilation from within,” said Shas.

“The ad was intended to illustrate the unbearable ease with which one can perform marriages under the law that Lieberman, one of the leaders of Likud Beytenu, tried to promote,” said the party. “In light of the positive responses to the ad among former Likud voters we will continue to air the ad tomorrow as well.”

Yisrael Beytenu responded to the ad, calling it an incitement to racism and inappropriate. “Shas has lost their marbles. This is not a kidush Hashem but rather a chill Hashem,” the party said in a statement.  

“Yirael Beytenu, in contrast to Shas, has always been in favor of Judaism without the business end of it, Judaism without politicians and middlemen which has transformed​​ Judaism into a source of personal power and livelihood,” the statement read, adding that Yisrael Beytenu has contributed more to Judaism than Shas “ever” has. 

The ad will continue to air today in its intended spot, but will not air during the remaining days.

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Did Shas go too far with ‘racist’ campaign ad?

Ad shows Russian bride receiving a conversion certificate by fax machine after calling a conversion hotline number • Shas says ad is meant to criticize the state’s conversion system • Lapid: Ad is clear example of ignorant Judaism preaching hate.

Shlomo Cesana and Israel Hayom Staff
 
 MK Nino Abesadze (formerly Kadima, now a candidate on the Labor party list), who also heads the working group for immigrants within the Labor party, submitted a complaint Tuesday with the Central Election Committee to ban a televised campaign ad for the Shas party.

 The ad shows a Russian bride receiving a conversion certificate by fax machine at her wedding ceremony, after calling a conversion hotline number. The ad, according to Shas, is meant to criticize the state’s conversion system by highlight the ease with which non-Jews can convert.

 According to a statement released by Shas, “Nothing bad was said about anyone in the broadcast.

 ”The issue of mixed marriages and fake conversions can lead to assimilation and loss of the state’s Jewish identity. A country that fights assimilation abroad cannot allow assimilation at home. The ad is meant to highlight the insufferable ease with which it is possible to enter a mixed marriage, under the auspices of a law that [Yisrael Beytenu Chairman Avigdor] Lieberman, one of the leaders of Likud-Beytenu, promoted. Following the positive responses we’ve received from former Likud voters, we plan to continue to run the ad tomorrow, too.”

 “The Shas broadcast is racist and presents the immigrant population in a ridiculous light,” Abesadze said.

SOURCES OF ARTICLE:

ISRAEL HAYOM   and  ARUTZ SHEVA
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Tags: Commentary & Opinion · JEWISH LOVE · Jewish World & History · Missionary attacks · Parasha & Religion

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