Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Torah Con?

Is an Orthodox Rabbi selling fake Holocaust Torahs to non-Orthodox congregations?

Serious questions have been raised about the fabulous Torah rescue stories told by Menachem Youlus, the self-proclaimed "Indiana Jones of Torah recovery and restoration." According to Youlis he found one scroll, known as the Auschwitz Torah is 2004, as follows:
Using a metal detector, Rabbi Youlus said, he searched an area within the boundaries of the prewar cemetery in Oswiecim and discovered a metal box buried near a house built after the war.

Inside, he said, was the Torah, but it was missing four panels.

He said that he had placed a classified ad in a Polish newspaper “asking if anyone had parchment with Hebrew letters.” He said a priest had responded to the advertisement, telling him, “I know exactly what you’re looking for” — the four missing panels.

Some historians who specialized in Holocaust studies wondered about Rabbi Youlus’s account, and in May 2008, he was asked by The Times for additional details about the Torah.

He said, among other things, that the Roman Catholic priest who had answered his advertisement in 2004 had died. He also said that he could not remember the priest’s full name.

He said that he had paid cash for the four panels, so he had no check that would serve as a receipt. He said that he had done the digging at the house himself “because I didn’t get a permit.”
After a story appeared in the Washington Post Magazine, casting doubt on the stories Youlus has told the synagogue that received the Auschwitz Torah, and the philanthropist who purchased it from Youlus, hired a scholar to investigate. He found Youles has no proof of anything: No photographs, contracts, receipts, or names. He can't identify the priest who sold him the four panels, and he can't name the newspaper that carried the advertisement, or say when or where the ad would have appeared.

These are serious questions indeed; however, they have been raised by the liberal Jew hating media, so please feel free to disregard.

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