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  • Agri saga continues in the Times

    It took more than a week, but the Times today printed six responses to last week’s op-ed by Shmuel Herzfeld criticizing the responses of the major Orthodox groups and calling for a rabbinic investigation of the kosher producer Agriprocessors. Not surprisingly, opinion roughly divides between the rabbis and everyone else. The Orthodox Union and the… More ▸

  • Herzfeld v. Lewin, Round 2

    Rabbi Shmuel Herzfeld (he of NYTimes Op-Ed fame) and his congregant Nat Lewin (famed attorney and Agriprocessors defender) are having a little intra-shul spat over the ethics of kosher slaughter. Lewin called Herzfeld a “vigilante” in his response to Herzfeld’s Times article and described his reasoning there as “fallacious.” Now Herzfeld is back for another… More ▸

  • Lewin: Herzfeld assertions are fallacious

    Nat Lewin, the Washington attorney representing Agriprocessors, just sent us a response to Shmuel Herfzeld’s New York Times op-ed last week. Read the response after the jump. REPLY TO RABBI SHMUEL HERZFELD by Nathan Lewin In a front-page article asserting that minors had been hired to work in an Iowa kosher meat-packing plant and in… More ▸

  • More on Agriprocessors: Child labor allegations and company response

    It seemed for a while things might have quieted on the Postville front, but the past few days have brought a flood of new information. Let’s briefly recap: Yesterday the Iowa labor commissioner referred 57 allegations of child labor violations to the state attorney general, calling the violations “egregious” and recommending they be prosecuted “to… More ▸

  • Video from Agriprocessors

    The National Council of Young Israel organized a company-sponsored visit for 25 Orthodox rabbis to Postville, Iowa, last week. Here is video shot by the Five Towns Jewish Times inside the plant. WARNING to vegetarians and those of weak stomach (myself included): Video includes graphic footage from the kill floor. UPDATE: Also today, the Iowa… More ▸

  • N.Y. Times: Agriprocessors’ reputation is “ugly”

    The New York Times weighed in with its latest editorial on the fallout from the May 12 immigration raid at Agriprocessors, the largest kosher meatpacking plant in the U.S. (See previous editorial here). Most of the newspaper’s ire was reserved for the federal government, whose criminalization of the illegal workers it called “a disgrace,” “a… More ▸

  • Agriprocessors: We’re immigrants too!

    Two days after immigrants and their advocates marched in Postville, Agriprocessors released this statement: The founders of Agriprocessors, the Rubashkin family, are a Jewish refugee family that escaped the clutches of Communism decades ago. Aron and Rivka Rubashkin fled Soviet Russia after experiencing oppression in the anti religious regime. Mrs. Rubashkin’s uncles were imprisoned in… More ▸

  • Head of HIAS speaks at rally in Postville

    Sue Fishkoff was in Postville, Iowa for yesterday’s rally there on behalf of the workers at Agriprocessors. Click here for her story. Perhaps the biggest name from the Jewish organizational world to take part was Gideon Aronoff, president and CEO of HIAS. Here’s the text of his speech: Statement of Gideon Aronoff President and CEO,… More ▸

  • NCYI heading to Postville

    On the heels of Sunday’s interfaith rally in Postville, the National Council of Young Israel has announced it is planning a mission of its own to the beleaguered Iowa town on July 31. Here’s the purpose of the trip, which will involve “several dozen Jewish community and rabbinic leaders,” according to NCYI’s Pesach Lerner: This… More ▸