Our Rabbi and Neturei Karta

Rabbenu Ha-Rav Tzvi Yehudah Ha-Cohain Kook

It once happened that a student did not daven Maariv at the conclusion of Shabbat. He therefore went to find a minyan in Meah Shearim, and he met up with our Rabbi who also had not davened Maariv. Our Rabbi spoke with the student for an hour and three-quarters about the Neturei Karta, who are against the State of Israel and against Tzahal at a time when the Master of the Universe shows us all of the signs of the Redemption and when everything written in Yechezkel chapter 36 is materializing before our eyes. After all of this, our Rabbi brought him to the shul of the Chasidim of Reb Arele Roth (a group known as Toldos Ahron who are intensely anti-Zionist), not by way of the main road but by way of the courtyard. When they entered the large hall, all eyes turned toward him, they finished the blessing after eating and they davened Maariv as if completely on fire. They then stood in line to say "shalom" to our Rabbi. After they left, the student asked, "Before we arrived I heard an hour and three-quarters against the Neturei Karta, and now they stand in line to say "shalom" to the Rav?" Our Rabbi responded, "One can learn from everyone. How to pray - this is here. You should know that when father, Ha-Rav ztz"l, desired prayer of 'all my bones would speak' (Tehillim 35:10), he would come here." Two weeks later, the student was walking in Meah Shearim, a Jew of the Chasidim of Reb Arele ran after him, "Send regards to Rav Tzvi Yehudah from so-and-so." When he related this to our Rabbi, he responded to him, "He is an expert in the writings of my father, Ha-Rav, but he learns them in secret, because if this was discovered he would be in danger, as he was born into Neturei Karta." In fundamental and principled matters, our Rabbi did not differentiate between this stream and that stream. For example, in protests against autopsies, our Rabbi would always participate with different Orthodox streams. (Iturei Cohanim #248 - in the name of Ha-Rav Binyamin Eisner)