A brawl broke out in Chabad's main synagogue at 770 Eastern Parkway after a Chabad yeshiva's spiritual guide demanded that a group of 'Tzfatim,' students from Chabad's extreme messianst yeshiva in Tzefat, Israel, remove room dividers they set up in the back of the synagogue so that “the Rebbe" (who died in 1994) "can conduct yechidus” – i.e., meet with the group of visitors who came to Brooklyn from Israel to celebrate Yud Shvat, the anniversary of the late Rebbe's ascent to leadership of Chabad.
Above: Police inside 770 Eastern Parkway after the brawl, 2-7-2012. Below: Room dividers, left, and podium set up for the Rebbe, center rear, in 770 Eastern Parkway 2-7-2012
Scuffle Breaks Out in 770 over “Yechidus”
Crown Heights [CrwonHeights.info] — Last night [Tuesday, 2-7-2012], a brawl broke out in 770 after a Mashpia demanded that a group of 'Tzfatim' remove dividers they set up in the back of 770.
The incident began at around 8:30 PM Tuesday night; the Tzfatim set up the dividers in the back of 770 so that “the Rebbe can conduct Yechidus” with the visitors who arrived for Yud Shvat.
The bochurim who were learning in their usual spots for night seder were forcibly kicked out of their seats by the Tzfatim. Upset about the Bitul Torah this “kabuki theater” was causing, they complained to 770 Mashpia Rabbi Bluming, who arrived in 770 shortly thereafter and demanded that the dividers be removed. The Tzfatim refused, and shouting ensued. As usual, the shouting gave way to violence, as one bochur was punched square in the face by a Tzfati.
Another Tzfati, Tzachi Cohen, hit the revered Mashpia in the face several times, until he was pulled away by force.
The bochur who was punched called the Police, who entered 770 to find the thug, but he was nowhere to be found. All the while, the Tzfatim were yelling at the vicitm, calling him a “Moser” and threatening him.
A tzfati by the name of Betzalel Kirenberg threatened Rabbi Bluming, saying “you will pay, and your family will pay.”
If you were witness to this incident and have any additional information, photos or videos, please send them to firstname.lastname@example.org.
[Hat Tip: AEA.]