S., an 87-year-old Iranian-born Jew, probably thought the stroke he suffered recently was bad news. Little did he know.
The Jerusalem Post reports:
A debilitating stroke forced upon S. the revelation that he was not properly circumcised. While undressing his father, S’s son noticed something strange. S’s private part was presented to Rabbi Shlomo Mahpoud, a renowned circumcision expert. The ruling: not kosher.
So S. did what any self-respecting uncircumcised Jewish octogenarian would do — he reported to a Jerusalem hospital. There, a Jewish organization that facilitates circumcisions for the improperly circumcised arranged for the snip to be performed. Apparently, it’s a somewhat widespread problem.
According to Aryeh Amit, director of Brit Yosef-Yitzhak, S. is not alone; There are a whole lot of foreskins waiting to be snipped.
"We believe there are 5 million Jewish men walking around without a proper brit mila," Amit said.
"The rebbe [Rabbi Menachem Mendel Schneerson, the late spiritual head of Chabad] said in 1984 that there were 10 million Jews living in the Soviet Union. If you assume that half were males and that the Communists prevented 95% of them from getting a brit you already have close to 5 million," he said.
In addition, said Amit, there are thousands of Jews whose foreskins were removed with a "clamp," a scissor-like device that grabs the foreskin.
"These clamps are a silent Shoah," said Amit, whose father, Yaron, established the organization in 1989, shortly after the Iron Curtain fell and hundreds of thousands of Jews from the former Soviet Union, previously forbidden to practice Judaism, began reclaiming their heritage.