Sunday, July 31, 2005

Creedmoor Profiles No.1 - Haham Rahamim Loyashar

From time to time, we will be presenting profiles of our Creedmoor personalities; our rabbonim, our supporters, our baalei batim, our noshim tzidkaniois, and all other of our multiple personalities. We begin with the fascinating story of Haham Rahamim Loyashar:

Harav Rahamim Elyashar is a true tzaddik. Few would dream that this compact, trim, polite man, a ba'al tshuva who is related to one of the oldest Jewish families in Yerushalayim, dares to visit some of Israel's toughest prisons on a daily basis. Shattah, the Ramle complex, Kfar Yona - all are on the rav's daily route depending on what part of the country he is located in on any given day. Over the past ten years, the rav, who is usually under no illusions of being able to save every single prisoner, has been able to bring the light of Torah to some of the darkest Jewish neshamos known to our people. But, to be sure, there have been failures. And no failure was greater, or more exasperating, than a young forger, drug dealer, procurer, automobile thief, bank fraudster, illegal gambling parlor operator, and all around "tzaddik" by the name of Shabtai Kahiashvili. Or at least that is what all involved in his many legal cases believe his name to be - for Shabtai has more identity cards and passports than the good Rav Elyashar has hairs in his long, full beard.

Rav Elyashar had learned early on to avoid those prisoners who used his program to lighten their sentences or to obtain special privileges - with one exception - the master con artist Shabtai Kahiashvili. "King Shabtai of Shattah" managed to obtain no fewer than five pairs of tefillin from the rav - all of which he dismembered so that he could fill the batim with hashish, heroin and cocaine. He then sold the special "Kabbalistic tefillin" to other prisoners in exchange for cash, guns and more drugs. But rest assured that our dear Shabtai did not desecrate the parchments - he wrapped them in cellophane and hung them on his cellbloc door as a "Kabbalistic Mezuzah." To be sure, he did sell two or three of the klafim to a gullible attorney who took over his case, but the tables turned and Shabtai ended up with six more months tacked on to his series of twenty year sentences.

Finally, Shabtai decided it was time to escape. So, he simply had his cousin in Tel Aviv print a new identity card - under the name Rav Rahamim Elyashar, but with his own picture in place of that of the rav. Now, it must be remembered that in Israel, there is a sizeable anti-religious left wing population which is opposed to initiatives such as that of Rav Elyashar. Many of these leftists are to be found in the Israeli judiciary.

Sure enough, Shabtai Kahiashvili appealed his many cases, and all were scheduled to be heard by the queen of the leftist judges, the sonah torah ve'tzoreret hayehudim Ayelet Piccolocazzia. One could imagine how this Izevel's hideously unattractive face lit up with glee when Kahiashvili claimed he was actually Rav Elyashar and that he was running spurious tshuva programs as an inmate! This meant an arrest warrant for the real Rav Elyashar, who was beside himself with worry - he never imagined that such a thing would happen to him.

Enter Moshiko Levy, a young former offender who is now a student in a kollel in Be'er Sheva, thanks to the intervention of Rav Elyashar. Moshiko, a former cheque forger, still maintains some contacts with people of his former ilk, and one of these came up with an ingenious scheme. He prepared a new forged identity card in the name "Rahamim Alav LOYASHAR" and affixed a picture of Kahiashvili to the new card. Then, he bribed a corrupt court officer to take the forged Elyashar card and destroy it, replacing it with the Loyashar card.

Even Judge Piccolocazzia had to laugh, as it now appeared that Kahiashvili was one of the stupidest convicts to ever grace the Israeli prison system. LOYASHAR? Dishonest? She ordered the cancellation of the arrest warrant for the rav, who continues to do Hashem's work in Israeli prisons to this very day, although he refuses to involve himself with forgers unless his former student, Moshiko, vets them first.

Now, how did the nonexistent Rahamim Alav Loyashar end up in an unofficial ward of Creedmoor? For this, we must follow the path of the forged identity card even further.

Like so many anti-religious leftists, Judge Piccolocazzia is idealistic up to her pocketbook. A fan of fancy jewelry and watches, which she affords thanks to bribes from criminals, corrupt developers and the like, she often shops at a little hovel in Mea Shearim known as "Yankev's Duty Free." Yankev was not always known as Yankev - he was once known as Kobo Michaeli, ne Yaakov Michalshvili in Tbilisi. And of course, Yankev is what one would call a fence. Now that he is a member of the Moshe Hirsch Neturei Creedmoor sect (which he joined upon his release from Yeshivat Maasiyahu), he has been told that fencing is a mitzvah as it takes profits from the evil Zionist government. He also has a heter to sell fake Rolexes at prices just below airport duty free - especially to his favorite customer - Ayelet Piccolocazzia!

But this time, Ayelet Piccolocazzia was coming to sell - a fake teudat zehut under the name of Rahamim Loyashar! We know, however, that Yankev is not stupid enough to pay for such a work of art - instead, he simply "took it for appraisal." Laughing his head off, he knew that there was only one place to send such a find - Creedmoor. He duly mailed the card with a request for a brocho to the Admou"r me Creedmoor...and now the fun really began.

The Admou"r sent the card on to his cousins, bent immigration attorneys by the names of Melvin and Burton Shmoigerman. He asked that Rahamim Alav Loyashar receive a green card, and all possible welfare benefits - and of course he paid his cousin in forged food stamps. Then, he registered an empty room in D-ward as "Frenkel's Shul (yes -talk about chutzpah!) - the Sephardic Beit Midrash of Creedmoor! Bingo! Property tax rebates and parsonage!"

And for seven years running, no one has cared to inspect this shul, which is registered in an abandoned basement bathroom in D-ward. And, thanks to the cooperation of a bent Indian psychiatrist on the Creedmoor staff (a Sikh, Budhu Singh Ramachandran, who has now taken to wearing a Creedmoorer turban a/k/a tin foil hat himself), the benefits for this great haham keep piling in every year!

2 comments:

erica Lubavitch said...

True blogging at its' finest! Thoroughly enjoying every word.

Anonymous said...

Wow this was an interesting story. :)