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Israeli Officials Had a Plan to Prevent Tragedy at Mt. Meron. It Was Ignored.


“None of this concerns me at all,” mentioned Yehuda Leib Schreiber, 33, a full-time Torah scholar and a father of seven. “It’s all dictated from above.”

The solely correct response, he mentioned, was “to repent.”

Beitar Illit’s victims included a father of 11, Rabbi Shimon Matlon, Elazar Goldberg, 37, Shmuel Zvi Klagsbald, 43, and a teenager, Shmuel Eliahu Cohen, 16. The names of the 4 flashed on an digital promoting board at the doorway to the settlement.

Inside, the prevailing temper was considered one of collective mourning and quiet introspection. Residents mentioned the tragedy was a divine message that referred to as for soul-searching and self-improvement. Even when such messages have been onerous for mortals to perceive, they mentioned, who have been they to ask questions?

“We believe the 45 were chosen by God to atone for the sins of this entire generation,” mentioned Chavi Zaltsman, 25, a mom of two from the Hasidic Karlin sect. The sins may embody idle gossip or disputes or hatred, she mentioned, including, “We need to love each other more, even if people are different.”

Some took consolation within the nationwide day of mourning that the federal government had referred to as on Sunday, although the extra excessive ultra-Orthodox teams that don’t acknowledge the state had little interest in state decrees.

“God came and took this boy and that man,” mentioned Asher Suissa, 44, a caterer and buddy of Rabbi Matlon’s. But he added that individuals have been additionally concerned, with out apportioning blame.



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