Rabbi denounces son accused of being fed informant
By WALLY EDGE • NJ Politicker
Rabbi Israel [sic] Dwek, the spiritual leader of the Sephardic Jewish community in the wealthy Monmouth County suburb of Deal, took to his pulpit on Saturday to cite the Talmudic Law of Moser that prohibits a Jew from informing on another Jew to a non-Jew. Rabbi Dwek then renounced his son, Solomon Dwek, the failed real estate developer whose 2006 indictment on bank fraud charges motivated him to cooperate with federal prosecutors in a sting operation that led to the arrests of 44 individuals on Thursday. The group included three mayors, two state legislators, a multitude of local officials, and several Rabbis. As explained to PolitickerNJ.com, Rabbi Dwek will sit Shiva for Solomon Dwek, observing the Jewish custom of mourning for an immediate family member who has died.
UPDATE 7-27-09 9:15 CDT – VIN is reporting Rabbi Dwek did not renounce his son and is not sitting shiva:
…VIN NEws was now able to confirm directly with Rabbi Dwek and family, what transpired this past shabbos
Rabbi Dwek gave a very emotional speech, where he strongly denounced the action of a Jew being an informant against other Jews, and said that together with Klall Yisroel he is also a victim in this, and asked for prayers from the entire Jewish community for his terrible suffering.
Rabbi Dwek did not renounce his son, nor is he sitting shivah according to Halacha.
We regret the error, and we apologize for any inconvenience we might have caused to the Dwek family for republishing an erroneous report.
VIN News strives to be the most accurate and reliable News source for the Jewish community, we always verify information we receive, and will continue to do so with Hashem's help.
I don't buy Dwek's denial and neither should you. Rabbi Dwek clearly lashed out at his son during that "very emotional speech" and said mesirah, informing, is forbidden. He clearly explained that any moser must be ostracized. And he clearly used the tern sit shiva.
Is he literally sitting shiva for his son?
I doubt it and I never expected he was observing a week of mourning. The tern used colloquially means to consider the person as if he were dead, to have no contact with him and to remove him completely from the person's daily life.
So Solomon Dwek is still his son but that son is "dead" and is ostracized.
That is what Rabbi Dwek meant and I believe that is what he has done.