Where were the forces of organized Orthodox Jewry back in April 2009 when Mazoltuv Borukhova and Mikhail Mallayev, both Orthodox Jews, were facing a sentence of life in prison?
I don't recall receiving 20 emails per day begging me to pray for them, as I did last week in honor of Rubashkin, the fraudmeister who employed children and illegal immigrants, or a few months before that in honor of Martin Grossman, the cop-killer from Florida. There were no mass gatherings on behalf of Borukhova and Mallayev, nor were there any conference calls led by famous women educators, or flashy professional YouTube ads. We weren't encouraged to attend kinus, or to say tehillim, or to sign petitions, and no claims were made that Borukhova and Mallayev were being victimized by anti-semites (though as I posted after sentencing, their judge, Robert J. Hanophy, certainly seemed to suffer from Jew-hatred.) I received letters from people begging me to post a few words in support of Rubashkin, but not one from anyone regarding the two Bukharin Jews from Queens.
As I remember it, the Jewish world was silent as Borukhova and Mallayev went to their judgement, and silent again as they were sentenced to life in jail.
What was different about Borukhova and Mallayev? Why weren't they zocheh to receive the Rubashkin/Grossman treatment? A few possibilities:
:: Money. Rubashkin had plenty of it, and he spread it around. It makes sense that people would support him - either as a way of saying thanks for past favors, or as a way to angle for future considerations. This doesn't do much to explain the outpouring of Grossman support, so nope: Scratch this one
:: Hakores Hatov. Rubashkin performed plenty off good deeds. No one doubts it. So of course, people were gratful, and stood up for him in his hour of need. Again, this doesn't explain why Grossman was helped, so its not our answer
:: Chabad Rubashkin is Lubovitch, and the Rabbi who visited Martin Grossman for 15 years, and helped marshal support as the date of the execution drew near was Menachem Katz, director of the Aleph Institute, a Chabad-run organization that helps Jewish military personnel and prisoners. Hmmm. Now, I think we're getting somewhere.
My advice to you is this: If you're ever accused of a crime, pose as a Lubov. It seems to help. And if anyone wants to write a post condemning Chabad for their selectivity, let me know and I'll link it.
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