Welcome to New Square But Bring Your Own Toilet

porta potty on wheelsThe cult enclave of the Skvere Rebbe (David Twersky), the incorporated New York State Village of New Square, likes to brag about their hospitality and kindness (chesed). This is often invoked to mitigate their off-putting habits like torching their dissidents, stealing from the government, and protecting their molesters.

As a legally incorporated village they have their own village court complete with their own judges, the Dishonorable Stuart Salles and the Dishonorable Benjamin Hager. I call them “dishonorable,” because they signal to victims, through the Rockland DA, Thomas Zugibe, that the courage to testify in a trial is pointless because they will still dispense the minimum sentence allowed. This leads victims to acquiesce to sweetheart plea bargains. These judges are fully bought and owned by the Skver leadership whose endorsements virtually guarantee election. Candidates endorsed by the Skver leadership consistently win over 90% of the vote. In fact, the Rebbe’s endorsement of Hillary Clinton when she was running for the U. S. Senate in 2,000 secured her over 99% of the vote!

The Dishonorable Stuart Salles

The Dishonorable Stuart Salles

The hospitality of Skver does not extend to those who report on abuse or support victims of abuse. One reporter, far along in her pregnancy, was denied the use of their bathroom facilities. When she managed to find an unmarked, unlocked bathroom she was told they would charge her with trespassing if she used it, according to Rabbi Nuchem Rosenberg’s blog [link]. A supporter of an abuse victim attending a court session was told there were no bathrooms and just had to sit it out and then rush to a gas station outside the village limits.

Defenders of Skver like to tell stories about visiting and being plied with food and drink. This is all true for visitors they think they can sucker. But if you are going there to support a victim of abuse or to report on abuse, be sure to turn down all such offers, especially for diuretic beverages like coffee, tea and alcohol or GI stimulating foods like chulent and fruit compote. After all, what goes in, must come out. If you are in Skver, at that point you are plumb out of luck and out of plumbing.

"Go three miles out of Skver"

“Go three miles out of Skver”

The good news is that in spite of Skver’s reprehensible tactics, more brave victims of abuse are coming forward (e.g., “Yossi“) and bringing charges, and these cases are being covered by reporters. Political pressure is also mounting on Rockland County prosecutor Thomas Zugibe. I believe he finally realizes that he may go the way of Charles Joe Hynes in Brooklyn who did not get reelected because the New York Times reported that he was coddling orthodox molesters.

Moshe Menachem Taubenfeld

Moshe Menachem Taubenfeld

The latest New Square alleged molester, Rabbi Moshe M. Taubenfeld, is a teacher in their schools. His brother, Rabbi Herschel Taubenfeld, pleaded guilty and got a no-jail-time sweetheart deal in the village court and continues to teach in their schools. Moshe will probably also keep his teaching job.

Moshe Taubenfeld is his legal name, but he uses the fake name, Mendel Zarkowsky for voting and other purposes. To date, Rockland County DA Thomas Zugibe has not brought him up on those charges. Once again I suspect he is pandering. Hopefully, journalists and outside authorities will put his feet to the fire and press the issue.

Skvere Rebbe, Grand Rabbi of New Square Rabbi Duvid Twersky

Skvere Rebbe,
Grand Rabbi of New Square
Rabbi Duvid Twersky

The unlucky residents of Chicago will be visited by the Skvere Rebbe and his large entourage from February 20-27. The core of his hosting committee is group of orthodox nursing home operators, a business in which Hasidim are important investors and regular targets of fraud prosecution. I have already advised Chicago residents about that upcoming visit (What Chicago Can Learn From the Skvere Rebbe) Let me just add on, even if you are inclined to reciprocate Skver’s legendary hospitality and even if you are inclined to let them use your toilet facilities, be careful about the Rebbe’s entourage, especially if he brings along his beloved yeshiva teachers, Rabbis Herschel and Moshe Taubenfeld. Don’t feel obliged to let them use your bathrooms and definitely keep them away from your children.


12 thoughts on “Welcome to New Square But Bring Your Own Toilet

    • Yes but, their are so many more out their like square. My modern orthodox family calls chassidim, The Chassidish Mafias. Note: their is two things involved her 1. Chassidish (doing more then obligated) which has nothing to do with faith 2. mafias. Both help but if you don’t give them back what they want you to they make your life miserable so they get what they want.

    • Seth
      On this blog, the negative aspects of Skvere have been presented. There are positive aspects as well. This is obvious, because you don’t really believe that in an entire group of Torah abiding Jews as large as Skvere, there would be nobody and nothing sensible and worthwhile. But as it happens to be in the case of Skvere, I happen to know personally of many good aspects. If Y.L. wants to invalidate the good because of the existence of the bad, we have the right to disagree with that.

      I wonder how much you know about all of the Charedi sects, which would allow you to validly make such a statement.

      Don’t be such a person who can have their mind molded to believe whatever a particular blog writer wants you to believe. Have a little bit of broadness to know that that still exists other information in the world besides what you read here.

      • Of course, most grown up in Skver don’t molest children. But most are intimidated and stay quiet while a convicted molester continues to have access to their children thanks to the Rebbe’s decision. Most people in Skver, no matter how many chumras they adopt, are oiver the issur of lo saamod al dam reyachah.

        The din rodef doesn’t say, if someone is strangling you, stop to acknowledge the good aspects of your strangler. Your only obligation while you are being strangled is to protect yourself.

        If you want the good aspects of Skver to be acknowledged join the fight to stop the abuse. Once that is taken care of, be my guest in praising the good aspects of Skver. Yes they compete with Satmar to get credit for giving out food in hospitals. But that kugel has a taam of trayf as long as it is used to kasher the reputation of menuvalim, ganovim, and murderous arsonists. A town that says tehillim for an arsonist but has no rachmunis on his victim, Rottenberg, is mamash Sodom.

      • BTW, I disagree with Seth. Lev Tahor in Canada is even worse than Skver. But Skver is worst of the chasidish groups when it comes to misuse of power by a Rebbe (apart from Lev Tahor).

        • YL: Yes, probably so though Skvere is one attempted murder-by-arson ahead of Lev Tahor. However I concede the point. They’re both down there amongst the dregs at the bottom of the proverbial barrel.

          Katche-lab: When I speak of “Skvere” in negative terms I am thinking mostly of the adult men and of those the ones most closely connected to their Rebbe. The women and children aren’t making policy nor are they acting independently of the adult men.

      • Being at the bottom of the barrel can also mean that in a barrel full of great people they are the least great. Not that I think the comment was meant that way.

        On the other hand, with all the great news coming out of the ‘heimesheh’ velt these days one would be hard pressed to judge who is at the bottom of the barrel.

        B”H hablogorim besafah Anglit, rubom kekulom, zennen finsterer ahmaratzim ve’ainam baalai sefer und ken nit ivris und nit iddish ve’ainam yodim vos zugtmen in mikvehneias und vos gait in emesen bechatzros hakoidesh.

        We have two problems going and the wrong one is being addressed IMHO. We have some noxious stuff being done by some mushchosim in levush and we have a PR problem.

        The PR problem is the one many in leadership positions have chosen to confront and in so doing have allowed the CAUSE of the PR problem to fester. Not only have they chosen to address the effects instead of the cause, but they and many of us nobodies have failed to differentiate between those yelling ‘Those Frum people have a problem in their midst so they are all bad and need to be destroyed’ (a particular Failed Midwestern ExBT come to mind) and those yelling ‘We Frum people have a problem in our midst and we must eradicate it’.

        • @RF
          But when those who claim to be confronting the CAUSE, merely counter attack the PR boosting in order to create negative PR, they are equally misguided. All it sound like is, as you say, ‘Those Frum people have a problem in their midst so they are all bad and need to be destroyed’ My proof is, look at the responses from the commentators on the blog, and you’ll see that that’s clearly what they are saying, because that is the message that they are understanding from this blog. A statement like ‘We Frum people have a problem in our midst and we must eradicate it’, is spoken with love for the people who need correction, much like the love of parents to their children even while taking strict measures ‘כאשר ייסר וגו. This message is not being understood here.

          • Bad behavior produces negative reactions. Stop trying to manage the reactions and stop blaming the messenger for the reactions. The problem lies in the behavior. Don’t blame the news reporters; blame the rebbe.

  1. So then don’t blame me for my reaction to your statements. I’m merely experiencing them as I see them.

  2. I don’t think anyone is blaming her. This is just simple news. If Chassidim would of questioned every thought and intention and every gossip they here in the chassidic cummunity that doesn’t have any credibility at all then their would of been preductive change within the cumunity but instead the chassidic people go and Analyze others anger or the way things are said or merely reported. I don’t think that anyone here thinks that the frum people need to be destroyed but unfurtunitly again instead of working on change within the cummunity buy the members their too fast to projecting their evil dark feeling unto others.

  3. Convicted felon and fraudster, Rabbi Gershon Tannenbaum, has written an advance PR piece (http://failedmessiah.typepad.com/failed_messiahcom/2007/01/head_of_igud_ha.html) on the upcoming visit of David Twersky to Chicago. The puff piece (http://5tjt.com/skverer-rebbe-to-visit-chicago/) includes these schedule details.

    “Rabbi Dovid Twersky, Skverer Rebbe, will iy’H arriving in Chicago on Thursday, February 20, for his first Shabbos there. The Rebbe will be hosted at the homes of Moshe Davis, David Friedman, and Avrohom Weinfeld. The Shabbos tefillos and tisch will be held at the Agudas Yisroel of West Rogers Park, 2801 W. Pratt Boulevard. Rabbi Moshe Sheinberg serves as its rav. The Skverer Rebbe will be accompanied by thousands of chassidim from the East Coast as well as from Canada and the West Coast.

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