Monday, July 07, 2008

The difference between Neturei Karta and Satmar

A Guest Post by Rafi G.
(cross-posted from LII)

The lines between Neturei Karta and Satmar are often blurred and unclear. Both are anti-zionist, and in general Neturei Karta is an offspring of Satmar. People commonly mistake the two and when Neturei Karta does something outrageous in public, often Satmar gets some flak.

Mishpacha (Hebrew) newspaper reported this past week on a protest in England that Satmar Hassidim were scheduled to take part in.

The protest was to be against some sort of event in London celebrating the 60th anniversary fo Israel. The Satmar Rebbe had called upon his Hassidim to protest the event, as "we must remind everybody that Judaism is not necessarily Zionism, and that there are many who think that the establishment of the State was a rebellion against the kingdom of God that continues to this day".

He set rules however. Rules that included a stipulation that the Hassidim could only protest as long as they "would not be anywhere in the vicinity of Palestinian protestors, who protest for their own reasons, and definitely not near Neturei Karta protestors who make a tremendous chilul Hashem with their identification with the murderous Arabs and their disgracing the kannoim who are God fearing and Jew loving."

They got the various licenses to hod their protest. After all the announcements and arrangements, the police called them up and told them, on the day of the protest, that they had decided that all protestors would have to stand in one area and it did not matter that they were protesting for different reasons.

The Admor of Satmar immediately put out announcements cancelling the protest, despite their having spread the word around all the Haredi areas on Shabbos.

So there you have the difference between Neturei Karta and Satmar. Satmar protests Zionism and what it sees as a rebellion against Hashem. That protest, however, does not allow one to join up with any other people just to achieve a certain goal. No chilul Hashem can be created in the process. While Neturei Karta people go and kiss people like Arafat and Ahmadinejad and praise them in their efforts to eradicate the Jewish people.

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