Sunday, 20 Nisan, 5784
  |  April 28, 2024

Missing From Agudah’s Video

A video shown at the Siyum Hashas noted the work of Daf Yomi promoter R' Chaskel Besser OBM, with a small omission. UPDATE: The producer CJ Kramer responds. Full Story, Video

Minnesota Camps Unity Day

Next Story »

Schottenstein Opens Shula Center

Notify of
newest most voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
to 85
August 7, 2012 5:33 pm

speak for yourself. i don’t consider us hypocrites. we don’t hold ‘worldwide jewry’ events supposed to bring together all jews from all walks of life, with the underlying theme of event promoting achdus, and then shun some. we also don’t – as in, the leaders/rebbe don’t/didn’t, and certainly not openly – publicly shun or put down the other gedolim, roshei yeshiva etc, despite what they have knowingly, and publicly preached against us. to their students (silently and verbally), to their baalei batim, and to the world. I don’t think anyone can compare the fact that chabad generally is a chssidism… Read more »

to #s10,18,20,37,42,56 and similar comments
August 7, 2012 12:03 pm

..when u r hurting ..you cry out !! .. doesn’t stop anyone from Chabad from doing the Rebbes work ..and keep growing B”H !!

to 84
August 7, 2012 10:58 am

When was the last time we included rabbis that weren’t lubavitch? Never. In fact most lubavitchers don’t even know half the litvishe rabbis. We are such hyppocrites when it comes to achdus I’m sick of it.

Are you kidding me?
August 7, 2012 12:31 am

I know all of the aforementioned individuals listed in the production and/editing of the footage. As if they think for one minute anyone who knows the slightest of anything (or them, and the said institutions in particular) did not intentionally redirect – or might I say crop out – the focus from the Lubavitcher Rebbe. I will go so far as to say that there is no way Chananya acted alone on such, he is not even likely to have directed that particular omission, he is much more likely to have been directed. Not to say he would not agree… Read more »

Stop for analyzing:
August 6, 2012 4:29 pm

honestly people would be mystified, if it had appeared the picture of the Rebbe, proving that it would be something unusual, then, since it does not appear, it would not be big news.

only that, it should not be making this much noise from it.
chaval al ha tirche

A little education
August 6, 2012 12:21 pm

I think it is important for the Chabad world to understand the world view of a non Chabadsker. We don’t call ourselves misnagdim. We don’t define ourselves by being against anything. In fact chabad rarely enters the mind space of the average non chabad orthodox Jew, and I think it never would if it wasn’t for the ubiquitous presence of chabad. I am not trying to say that chabad isn’t a jewel in the crown of klal Yisrael, I am simply saying that the perception of many within chabad that they are ‘snuim’ or the ‘nidchei Yisrael’ is silly at… Read more »

August 6, 2012 2:15 am

I don’t seek to fan any flame or blow on an ember to create one, but regardless of on what or who someone would like to focus what cropping a photo, if you are trying to show someone in a positive light and you have a picture fo that person with a wordl leader, why would you crop the leader out? Yes, it’s true including the leader woudl diminish full focus on the desired subject, but it also upgrades the status of the subjet. As another posted, if the photo had incuded some gadol from lakewood, it would not have… Read more »

Technical misunderstanding
August 6, 2012 12:08 am

I think this whole issue is one of perception.

To the average person who just looks at the 2 pictures above it may seem like ‘they cropped out the Rebbe’. (CH’V).

But to somebody who does video editing, it’s simply finding an appropriate shot, and zooming in on the subject.

Besuros Tovos.

August 5, 2012 10:22 pm

No surprise!
A Leopard never changes its Spots!!
That’s Agudas Yisroel fpr you, living in denial about how much influence the Rebbe had over its own leaders.

In all probability
August 5, 2012 3:59 pm

Whoever made the decision to crop didn’t do it out of Sinah, but out of fear for the Sinah of those who would see the picture. It illustrates the same thing. Of course “Agudah” as an organization didn’t “sanction” the cropping; did the higher-ups make every minor decision about how the video was made? But it shows that we have a long way to go before certain frumme segments let go of their sinah to Lubavitch. I don’t see this as a reflection on Lubavitch at all; it was no better before Gimmel Tammuz. And to compare this with Lubavitch… Read more »

Moshe Sherer
August 5, 2012 3:35 pm

Let us take this in the proper perspective:

1. Moshe Sherer was proud of the fact the he NEVER went to see the Rebbe! So what do you want from Aguda if this was the policy of the many years leader of Aguda in America?

2. On the flip side when Maliokel Kotler (of the famed “Lubavitch is not part of Klal Yisroel) got up to make the siyum Yudel Krinsky got up and walked out in protest. (Segal and Zalman Labkovski did not have the same self respect that Rabbi Krinsky had and stayed). …

August 5, 2012 12:49 pm

why could they not found a different pic from harav beser a”h , were he is by himself or a simple Jew or someone they would not have to crop the pic?

August 5, 2012 8:46 am

There is no excuse why the siyum harambam does not already look like this…. I’m sure some ” chaim miller” non gezhe style will come one day and show the world how much ramba”m will enhance Thier lives, while all gezhe will kivayochil busy being insulted about a pic. My friends this is no joke! We need to have every shul in CH and chabad houses teaching rambam

you cant teach an old dog new tricks!
August 5, 2012 1:06 am

This is a fact of life they are alte sonim! they are insecure and you cant blame them because they have the full right to be so they also cant cope with the total hismasrus and bitul rav Besser had for the rebbe, which is very well known, so to put it simple the heck with them they will never grow up. We were zoche that the Rebbe trained us to do whats right even if not popular. yehi loheh asher lohem and as the known saing goes “VER DARF ZEI DAH HOBEN”. Meiovahi techakmeini lets all be mitchazik in… Read more »

August 5, 2012 12:08 am

Very difficult to give the producers the benefit of the doubt .. and I’m not even a Lubavitcher.

#52 - you missed the point
August 4, 2012 11:01 pm

I realize that’s it’s a fine line, but the Daf Yomi has always been promoted as a non-political issue. True, it was born at a Knessia Gedola, and true it has become a “project” of Agudath Israel because Ch. Besser figured that would be where the best support would come from. But if you would have attended any of the Siyumim, you would see quite a few people in attendance who would never be at a convention (that applies to the Dais, as well as the audience). Pretty much the same applies to Siyumei Harambam worldwide, no? So whichever Rebbe’s… Read more »

some outside perspective...
August 3, 2012 6:39 pm

I am not a regular reader of this site, nor blogs in general – and for good reason! Yet, i was sent here, i’ve read the comments, and i’d like to give you some feedback. In the interest of full (almost) disclosure, i am not a “snag”, though i am a card carrying member of the Agudah with abit of credibility on the subject… #4 has it right – this would apply to ALL sides in ALL cases! #26 – although you’re probably right on both counts, for you to imply that another Jew is b’geder Eisov is shameful! #41… Read more »

I love the comments coming from the Agudah Office.
August 3, 2012 5:50 pm

Very sorry excuses…..

Concerned about Machlokes
August 3, 2012 5:22 pm

Everyone needs to calm down – as soon as this emerged, I reached out to the producer of the video who told me in no uncertain terms that this was HIS editing – NOT Agudah’s official position and that he meant nothing at all with it – it was simply about Rabbi Besser and Lauder. You might say he was unwise/insensitive to crop out the Rebbe – but the reality is he meant nothing Chas Vsholom! Over there really is no story here at all. Do we need more fuel for the fire?

August 3, 2012 4:52 pm

Can we stop being paranoid already????
Non stop shopping around for percieved slights is getting delusional.One or maybe a few people produced this video.Nobody else had any idea if the Rebbe was or was not in the video to be cropped out.
There is no conspiracy here.Get over it.

Zooming in explanation bogus...
August 3, 2012 4:24 pm

As a graphic artist i can tell you that the photo could have been shown complete and then zoom in on the main subject. but they would then have to explain who the other people are in the picture. doing that would have been graphically more interesting but when there are agendas….

Eough with Negativity!!!!!!!
August 3, 2012 4:07 pm

All the negative comments is exactly the opposite of what the Rebbe would of wanted from us. Go out there and do another mitzva or good deed to hasten the coming of Moschiach. Please no more Loshen Horah & Richiles this hurts the Rebbe more. Go help a boy or girl on the streets and inveite them over for a shabbos meal. Inspire them with stories and it will deffinitly help to bring Moschiach Now!

August 3, 2012 3:12 pm

it stings that people do things to omit Chabad, its disheartening to see how they go to lenghts to do that.

the zooming in explanation
August 3, 2012 2:54 pm

As pointed out by 59, it is in fact very common to pan wide and then zoom in on your subject, maasim b’chol yoim. Even if we are melamed zechus that it was unintentional, it is b’geder shogeg karov l’meizid.

Raebbe Siyum
August 3, 2012 2:44 pm

WHne the Rebbe made a siyum (vidoe was posted last week). All he spoke about was the fact that all of the learning is useless if you dont do a good deed to another. Vdai Lamaven……….

Rabbi Pinchos Woolstone
August 3, 2012 2:30 pm

Rabbi Besser told me personally at his home in Manhattan
“I never felt the same way with other Rebbes as when I was in the presence of the Lubavitch Rebbe, he was of a different calibre, a yoizer min a Klal legamrei”
As to the Agudah piece, forget it , no of any importance.

August 3, 2012 2:09 pm

I don’t know what to say about this video story, but I would just like to point out and remind people how Agudah has been supportive and openly advocated for Sholom Mordechai Rubashkin and we should always remember that!

to #58
August 3, 2012 1:57 pm

FACTUALLY not true!
There were many attempts to give them ready material in a mentschlich way to put it in!!!
Please get your facts correct.

some clarifications
August 3, 2012 1:54 pm

someone commented here what if by siyum horambam….picture of someone with Shach….. – small difference Shach attacked the Rebbe and Lubavitch publicly repeatedly, so obviously we would crop him out. The Rebbe never attacked Agudas Yisroel or Daf Yomi etc., so this comparison is none. The excuse of the producer that they wanted to focus on Besser etc. – if he is a producer of a video he knows well and good how to bring onto the screen a full picture and then zoom in on one part of the picture, this also comes across more professional, only if you… Read more »

To # 50
August 3, 2012 1:40 pm

They actually requested material to be included, but were treated in a callous manner by the people in charge of sending them material. It doesn’t surprise me why they did not include anything from the Rebbe.

To 28
August 3, 2012 1:37 pm

Rav elyashiv was never part of aguda!
He joined degel , the breakaway faction of the misnagdim, in 1989
He never joined aguda

August 3, 2012 1:35 pm


Besser video
August 3, 2012 12:54 pm

A good opportunity for COL to post this JEM video of Besser telling story of Rebbe’s meeting Belzer Rebbe in Berlin.

they were zomming on bessers face they didnt cut out the rebbe
August 3, 2012 12:51 pm

why dont u just start learning the daf instead of just loking for any little detail to just cause gossip and sinas yisrael

Title correction
August 3, 2012 12:50 pm

Not a small omission; it was a important omission.

The Great Boycott
August 3, 2012 12:43 pm

This year’s Siyum was historic in the sense that Chassidic Gedolei Yisroel were not visible other than the Kloysenberger Rav. Vishnoitz, Skwere, Rachmistrivke, Bobov and other Chassidic REbbe’s were nowhere to be seen. They were livid that they were not consulted about the program. The politicians of Aguda were Mechabed Schottenstein with saying the Kaddish on the Hadran. Hardly an Orthodox Yid who broke his teeth on the Kaddish was not in the tradition of a Siyum Hashas. Rabbi Lau, although a brilliant speaker is a Mizrachist at best not an Agudist. The Chassidic Gedolim mentioned saw this as an… Read more »

Our attitude should be ...
August 3, 2012 12:37 pm

Not to be fools and ignore this insult to the Rebbe. The ones who ordered the picture crop will answer for it later. We should also not overreact and keep alive the negativity. Be positive and act with mentchlichkeit.

I think the better point would have been, what an act of achdus would it have been to show the whole picture, sadly, the old attitudes remain…

They fear Chabad because of its prominence. On the other hand, we have lots to do ourselves, lets focus on fixing ourselves and our own achdus which is lacking.

Eliyahu from eastern Canada ….

Rabbi Nosson Sherman did the same thing..............
August 3, 2012 12:35 pm

Only Rabbi Nosson Sherman is able to do acts of sinas chinam and machlokes with what he doesn’t say or do then with what he does say or do. Just like he croppped the Rebbe’s picture out of the picture with Reb Chatzkel Besser, He did the same thing with the entire artscroll on chumash. He simply did not put in one explanation of the Rebbe on chumash! Can not imagine how he couldn’t find one pirush of the Rebbe out of 100,000 pirushim printed in lkutei sichos. Then later when interviewed he asserts that he did not leave the… Read more »

good for COL
August 3, 2012 12:28 pm

I hear the comments of those who think COL should not mention this. That is very nice for you and commendable. However, we have seen in the past that when people’s bigotry is highlighted they apologize for it and are less likely to repeat it. This is one of the benefits of the internet. Halachically, and I am not a Rov, there is a chiyuv to call out and protest a chilul Hashem, and this most certainly was a chilul Hashem in front of thousands of people. It doesn’t matter if it occurred at an otherwise beautiful event — a… Read more »

a few points to ponder
August 3, 2012 12:27 pm

1. if we were showing a presentation and a bb was standing next to @#% most probably do the same 2. we need to be inspired from this video as to understand what the rebbe really wanted US to do with rambam and recognize the potential to engage the world 3. recognize we cant have it both ways ignore/laugh/puke the sangs and then expect them give recognition 4. while we have managed to engage the liberal secular world to understand how OPEN minded we are and have been accepted we never put any real effort in showing the snags we… Read more »

Achdus Achdus
August 3, 2012 11:52 am

As long as you do it my way!

Think it through
August 3, 2012 11:42 am

The fact is that if the Rebbe would have been left in the picture, it would have created a great distraction, and been goirem many inappropriate comments, discussions, arguements etc.
It was the right thing to prevent that from happening & preserve the Rebbes, as well as Agudah’s kovod.

August 3, 2012 11:29 am

There was once a mekurav to Chabad who visited Boro Park for the first time. When he returned to report about his trip, he said, “There are so thousands of Chabad People in Borough Park”.
For the world outside frum people, there is only one Jewish group that auctually exists, “Chabad”. We cant win them all.

they showed their true colors
August 3, 2012 11:24 am

Now all you who are living in DENIAL< WAKE UP!!!!!!!!!!!!!! They cropped the PICTURE OF THE REBBE ON PURPOSE. Aguda is jealous of the accopmplishments of Lubavitch. They talk about ACDUS but bring the biggest PIRUD

The display of a hidden weakness for all to see
August 3, 2012 11:06 am

Comment 6 put it very well. The fact that they took the Rebbe out of the picture displays an underlying insecurity they have, and some kind of fear that is in their minds and hearts. If it was anyone else in the picture, even just a regular person they would have left him in the picture without even thinking twice. This shows that it was a conscience decision they made in talking the Rebbe out r”l. It’s a shame! By them doing this, they displayed a great hidden weakness of theirs for us all to see. This discussion is not… Read more »

enough already
August 3, 2012 11:05 am

cropping the photo speaks for itself, however we should take our cue from our Rebbeim and focus on the good. Please col use your exposure to report positive inspiring events.

Turn it around
August 3, 2012 10:59 am

Let’s turn it around. suppose Lubavitch would attempt (HLEVAI)to attract all factions to Siyum HaRambam. In a picture there is 2 people whom you are discussing about in your video standing with Rabbi Shach. Would we have cropped out the picture?? Yes, because at the Siyum HaRambam that would be offensive to many. Should we then not attempt to unite all factions? We are in golus still. The Rebbe many times said that if something positive may come by not including me, then go ahead. Uniting people is a great thing even though there are still many halamos oF golus.… Read more »

August 3, 2012 10:57 am

Lubavitch has stooped so low not to care that people are disrespecting the Rebbe. Crown Heights is sinking fast.

went to their yeshivas
August 3, 2012 10:02 am

This was done to show that Lubavitch/Rebbe is not important. To them it is not a kovod that besser went to the Rebbe. This is unfortunate but real life.

it was about besser etc
August 3, 2012 9:48 am

if alyashivs pic or any other gadol would be in the pic it would still be about besser.
if the rebbe is in the pic it would detract from besser etc.
they recognize that.

This isn't the attitude I love Chabad for
August 3, 2012 9:37 am

Chabad used to be happy, optimistic and forward looking. If someone wants to focus on a part of the picture without the Rebbe, so be it. No big deal. Get over it guys and move on. There’s a whole welt out there who still know nothing about their Jewish heritage!!!

Did not come from the top.
August 3, 2012 9:32 am

This DISPICABLE act of Bizoyen , was NOT sanctioned from the top.

Rabbi Dovid Zwiebel is a sh-tik eidel-kiet, that man would not know how to insult any one if it hit him between the eyes. As we have Me-chutzo-fim, so do they.

I only hope that the Man-higim of Agudas Yisroel will rectify this “BIZOYEN HATORAH” !!!!

August 3, 2012 9:28 am

It is very significant it shows sinas chinom period.They are sick with their hatred beyond belief.I sometimes daven in lakewood satmar as i live in PA and I dont always have a Daily minyan .satmar shtibel .has ongoing minyonim. a yeshivisha person litrealy verbaly atacked me loudly why is a lubavitcher davens there. I told him he picked the wrong lubavitcher to start with as I was a close talmid o f Rav Shmuel Berenbaum ZL and my grandfather zl who had a gemilas chesed in williamsburg davened every day at the satmar R rebbes private minyan as requested by… Read more »

On purpose? So what!
August 3, 2012 9:25 am

What’s the problem – why does every single (perceived) slight, whether real or not, have to be brought to the forefront?
In the largest display of K’vod Hatorah in America ever (other than a funeral), there has to be issues brought up? Get over it, and grow up.

R' Nosson Sherman
August 3, 2012 9:14 am

It is a sad testimony to the lack of hakoras hatov by Rabbi Nosson Sherman. If it wasn’t for a shliach of the Rebbe , Horav Hagoan Sholom Ber Gordon , olav hashalom, Rabbi Sherman would not have been a frum person today. (Unless someone else would have been mkarev him and taken him out of public school, and sent him to a Yeshiva and had him over at his house for shabbosim etc. etc. )

August 3, 2012 9:12 am

Its no secret agudah and the litvitshe gedolim dislike the rebbe and lubavitch….face it…and btw the yechi people probally encourage it.

I agree
August 3, 2012 9:04 am

That is was about Besser and Lauder

But to go out of their way and take a pic of them with the Rebbe and to edit the REBBE out on purpose its a Bizyoin…

Halacha: eisav soneh es Yaakov
August 3, 2012 9:03 am

Shabbat shalom

August 3, 2012 8:51 am

Why take the opportunity to further fan the flames of machlokes.
They did it.
Why do we have to highlight it and discuss it?

To #4
August 3, 2012 8:17 am

You are right in saying that if Rabbi Besser would be standing next to Rav Eliyshiv, they wouldn’t have cropped it – but don’t forget that Rav Eliyashiv was part of Aguda, not the Rebbe, so they have no interest in promoting the Rebbe. The question here is – if he would have been standing next to the Satmar Rebbe – would they have cropped it, or not….

August 3, 2012 8:08 am


straight to the point
August 3, 2012 7:58 am

it is a well known vort “aisav soneh et yisroel”
they cannot tolerate anything that has to do with lubavitch

why crop the rebbe out?
August 3, 2012 7:35 am
what do you expect?
August 3, 2012 7:17 am

And this Sina makes a joke of their learning. All the shteiging in the world doesn’t give these hypocrites any more ahavas yisroel. They make me sick.

August 3, 2012 6:56 am

Chaskel Besser himself would have been very hurt by this. He valued his relationship with the Rebbe a lot

This is a very important story
August 3, 2012 6:31 am

I am happy that all those who went to the siyum can now see what it was really about and go ask mdchila from the rebbe

To add to # 6 great comment. What if it was lehavdil a senator

August 3, 2012 6:25 am

There was no no reason for them to crop the Rebbe.It is typical of their attitude. Lubavitch makes them nervous. As the Rebbe would say the shver has broad enough shouldres. The Rebbe has tremendous shoulders. We are in good hands BH

Stop being pathetic.
August 3, 2012 4:53 am

PLEASE. Yes, you are right it was cropped. But please stop digging around for sinas chinam, you will find it wherever you look. how does your posting help?

Its wrong for them to omit (crop)
August 3, 2012 4:34 am

its dubble wrong for us to care

unless you care bec its a lost opportunity to legitimize the Rebbe to ppl who so far have been kept in the dark from benefiting from the beauty of chasidus chabad

Our responsibility
August 3, 2012 4:31 am

This is not a judgement of them, it is a reflection of how we are doing our job. We have a lot of work to do…

Whats the Chiddush
August 3, 2012 3:51 am



aguda act was disgraceful
August 3, 2012 3:49 am

not only that peasach krohn has been assured by rabbonie eretz yisroel from doing brissin
and people still use him

August 3, 2012 3:35 am

This is really heartbreaking. It is precisely things like this that taint the prestine of the whole Daf Hayomi institution… This is why the Rabbeim did not propogate daf Hayomi. Because the institution is fundamental anti Chasidus… Chaval…

August 3, 2012 3:21 am

10 all the people lehavdil at a super-ball isn’t achdus!?! and at the million man march in washington a few years ago with farakan!?!

If only
August 3, 2012 2:41 am

If only he was getting kol shel brocha from rabbi krinsky maybe they would not have cut him out.

Stop pandering, it was sickening to see rabbi krinsky there. They treat Lubavitch the way they treated the rebbe, they cut him out.

To # 10
August 3, 2012 2:29 am

The point is that if they are preaching about achdus, they should not specifically do something that negates that

Come on
August 3, 2012 2:25 am

There was good reason to take it out as the video was talking about Lauder and Besser and their relationship. Nothing else. if the picture had included the Rebbe it would have inevitability taken away from that focus. As to whether they would have done that with one of their Gedolim, well they may have left it in but only because that would have been significant to a large portion of the crowd. Unfortunately, there’s plenty of genuine examples of Sinas Lubavitch. No need to clutch at straws and call foul when nothing happened. Memo to Col; There are plenty… Read more »

Why are you looking to reitz on machlokes?
August 3, 2012 2:12 am

We saw such achdus at the siyum, stop looking in the garbage for a scrap of machlokes.I guarantee you”ll find it.

To #3
August 3, 2012 1:58 am

Its childish and spiteful of them to crop it!
Their relentless and continuous sinah is ridiculous!

August 3, 2012 1:36 am

there was no reason to specifically take it out

August 3, 2012 1:28 am

well put

August 3, 2012 1:14 am

Let’s phrase the question differently:

If Besser and Lauder were standing with Rav Elyashiv or Reb Nosson Tzvi Finkel (a WHOLE speech was dedicated to at the siyum), do you think they would have cropped it as well? Not in a million years!

You know why? because its a great kovod and zchus to be seen with a tzaddik. And it seems like the organizers did not think a tzaddik was indeed in the photo (or perhaps the Rebbe was too great for them)…

To #3
August 3, 2012 1:10 am

You are right that they had no obligation or point to show the Rebbe in the video, but once you have a photo of him why make it a point to take him out?

The point here is not was the Rebbe in the video or not, but what is behind their decision and if it can indicate on what they really think (as so clearly done by R’ Malkiel Kotlar before the last such event “Asifa”)

I disagree with this...
August 3, 2012 1:07 am

The video was not talking about the Rebbe! To us its always Rebbe, Rebbe, Rebbe… but for others it is not so. The video was Ronald Lauder talking about Chaskel Besser and thats EXACTLY what the photo showed, Lauder and Besser – nothing more, nothing less.

LEt s stop playing victim every shot we get.

Childish non-story
August 3, 2012 1:06 am

This video has nothing to do with Lubavitch or the Rebbe. Getting offended because they only used the part of the photo that is relevant to the story is ridiculous.

August 3, 2012 12:55 am

Hanosi hu hakol

August 3, 2012 12:41 am

Really no surprise…