I have this great Yahrzeit App on my Smartphone reminding me that today, Thursday 15 Tammuz, we are commemorating the Yahrzeit of Rabbi Amram Blau ( the most famous Neturei Karta leader from Mea Shearim). Usually the Mishkenot HaRoim commemorate the Rabbi’s Yahrzeit with a special Shiur of different Mishnayiot.
However, the information given by the App is quite interesting and I am asking YOU if I got this right. It says on the app:
Rav Blau was forced to surrender leadership of the Neturei Karta in 1965, after he married Ruth ben David, who was a divorced woman and a convert from Christianity, two years after his first wife, Hinda, passed. She also was a convert and former member of the French Resistance, who had rescued Blau during the Holocaust.
Does this mean that his first wife was a French convert too or does the last sentence only apply to his second wife ? I admit that the text confuses me a bit. On the other hand, I don’t remember any place stating that Ruth ben David had saved him from the Holocaust.
Furthermore, it states that Rabbi Amram Blau as well as Rabbi Aharon Katzenelenbogen were vehemently opposed to activities such as Neturei Karta representatives meeting with Arabs. While the two Rabbis were still alive, Rabbi Katzenelenbogen went to the Zionist Israeli court to enforce an order forbidding Moshe Hirsh from leaving Israel in order to meet with Jew – hating Arabs.
As we know, Mosh Hirsh, later on, founded his own Neturei Karta Chatzer and became a Minister of Jewish Affairs in Arafat’s Ramallah cabinet. A few years ago, he passed after suffering from Alzheimer. His son Israel is now running the Chatzer besides Yoelish Kroisz who is a kind of competitor located just around the corner.
After Rabbi Blau passing, the Neturei Karta of Mea Shearim losts its glory and is more or less irrelevant today.