Newly Discovered Historic Psak on Brooklyn Eruv

Following the publicity of the longtime Lubavitch stance regarding eruvin in large cities, one reader shared a more comprehensive list including signatures by other prominent Lubavitcher Rabbonim against constructing or using an eruv in Brooklyn.

By writer

Following the article on regarding the longtime Lubavitch position against eruvin in large cities, including a public notice from 1979 signed by several famous Lubavitcher Rabbonim, an reader shared with us a similar notice with signatures of other prominent Lubavitcher Rabbonim.

The notice, which appeared at the time in the Jewish Press, is signed by 73 leading Rabbonim, including famous names such as Harav Moshe Feinstein, Harav Simcha Elberg, and the Rebbes of Bobov, Satmar and Pupa.

In their public letter, they state their unequivocal opposition to create or use an eruv in Brooklyn: “We hereby declare publicly that it is forbidden to set up an Eruv in any neighborhood of New York or Brooklyn without exception. Even if an Eruv is set up, it will be forbidden for adults and children alike to carry within it.”

Of special interest to Lubavitch readers are the signatures of prominent Lubavitcher Rabbonim. Aside from Harav Zalman Shimon Dworkin, Harav Pinchas Hirshprung, and Harav Meir Greenberg, whose names appeared on the previous notice, the new letter includes other acting Rabbonim at the time:

Harav Chaim Meir Bukiet – Rov of Oneg Shabbos in East Flatbush, Chairman of Vaad Rabbonei Lubavitch (Central Committee of Lubavitch Rabbonim), and Rosh Yeshiva of Lubavitcher Yeshiva.

Harav Yitzchok Ber Ushpol – Rov of Anshei Lubavitch of Boro Park, member of Aguch and director of the Lubavitch Chevra Kadisha.

Harav Shlomo Aron Kazarnovsky – Rov and famous chossid of three Rebbeim, member of the boards of Merkos, Machene, and Aguch, and a Rov in Bensonhurst.

Also, interesting to point out, the names of other Rabbonim who signed, who although were not Lubavitcher Rabbonim per se, shared a close kesher with the Rebbe:

Harav Mordechai Harlig – the father of Mashbak Reb Meir Harlig, Harav Mordechai was close to the Frierdiker Rebbe and the Rebbe, and merited special kiruvim from the Rebbe. He served as a rov in the Bronx, until his final years when he lived in Crown Heights.

Harav Efraim Eliezer Yolles – Rov and Chief Rabbi of Philadelphia and head of the Agudas Horabbonim, Harav Yolles was a fervent follower of the Rebbe and merited a very special connection with the Rebbe.

Harav Chaim Tzvi Kreiger – a phenomenal rov and posek who lived in Crown Heights for many years where he answered shailos and gave semicha. He had a close connection and correspondence with the Rebbe, who even apologized for not being able to attend his son’s bar mitzvah.


The following is the full text of the notice:

We regretfully bring this matter to the attention of all G-d Fearing Jewish residents of Flatbush, lest our silence be mistaken for acquiescence.

The “ERUV-PLAN” for Flatbush by certain rabbis and laymen is invalid. This is the p’sak (Halachic Ruling) of every recognized responsible Rabbinical Authority in New York.

Whoever contributes to this Eruv will be contributing to the public desecration of the holy Shabbos.

Woe unto us that before our very eyes orthodox Jews would profane the Shabbos Kodesh for personal convenience!

The following is a translation of essential excerpts from a letter by HaGaon Rabbi Moshe Feinstein Shlita, the acknowledged Posek HaDor, addressed to the Rabbinical Board of Flatbush:

“I had previously explained orally why it is forbidden to establish an Eruv in Brooklyn, even in a part of it such as Flatbush. Therefore it is public domain by Torah definition and it is strictly forbidden to make an Eruv.”

Moshe Feinstein

The following injunction has been signed by the Rabbonim listed below:

We hereby declare publicly that it is forbidden to set up an Eruv in any neighborhood of New York or Brooklyn without exception. Even if an Eruv is set up, it will be forbidden to adults and children alike to carry within it.

Moshe Feinstein

Shmuel Ehrenfeld

Yisroel Shapiro

Shlomo Halberstam

Naftoli H. Hoenig

Moshe Bick

Yosef Grunwald

Moshe Teitelbaum

Moshe Stern

Zalman Shimon Dworkin

Y. Ber Rotenberg

Ezriel Lebovits
Adas Yereim

Yisroel C. Menashe Friedman
Satmar Dayan

Simcha Elberg
Agudas Harabbanim

Tuvia Meir Ginsberg
Menahel Agudas Harobonim

Gedalla Schorr
Rosh Yeshiva, Torah Vodaas

Shraga Moshe Kalmanowitz
Rosh Yeshiva, Mir

Tuvia Goldstein
Rosh Yeshiva, Emek Halacha

Chaim Tzvi Kreiger

Yecheskel Landau

Yaakov S. Kassin
Chief Rabbi of Syrian Comm.

Shimon Schwab
Adask Yeshurun, Washington Heights

Aron Zlotowitz

Aron Kazarnovsky

Moshe Rottenberg
Rosh Yeshiva, Gur

Avigdor Miller

Shlomo Friedman

Shlomo Z. Braun

Ephraim Oshry
New York City

Yitzchok Liebes

Aaron Y. Shapiro
Torah Vodaas

Moshe Halevi Shulman

Chaim Yitzchok Pupko

Shloma Zalman Horowitz
New York City

Lipa Teitelbaum

Grainom Lazewnik
Khal Shomrel Daas

Yosef Leifer

Shaul Goldman
Rosh Yeshiva, Bais Aaron

David S. Spector

Chaim Meir Bukiet

Menachem Manis Mandel
Yeshiva of Brooklyn

Lipa Margulies
Torah Temimah

Yaakov Kopel Pasternak
Ahavas Achim

Dovid Kviat
Agudas Yisrael

Yitzchok Ber Ushpol

Dovid Singer
Anshei Sfard

Sholem Flam

Osher Katzman

Shimshon Brodsky

Simcha J. Weissman
Young Israel

Hillel David
Yeshiva Shaarel Torah

Chaim Benoliel
Rosh Yeshiva, Mikdash Melech

Yosef Harari-Raful

Yosef Rosenbaum
Khal Ginzei Yosef

Aaron Zuckerman
Audas Yisroel, Flatbush

Yaakov Yitzchok Spiegel

Mordechai Harlig

Yosef Katzenstein

Yisroel Gornish

Yisroel Belsky

Yitzchok Yaakov Rabinowicz
Khal Darcha Tshuva Munkatsh

Yitzchok Meir Schorr
Torah Vodaas Minyou

Yosef Chaim Moskowitz
Khal Das Shalom-Shutz

Yisroel Dovid Taub

The following out of town Rabbonim of the Union of Orthodox Rabbis of America have also signed an injunction prohibiting the establishment of Eruvin New York and all other cities throughout the United States (where similar halachic conditions exist):

Eliezer Levin

Yehuda Dovid Goldman

Efraim Eliezer Yolles

Meir Greenberg
Paterson N.J

Aaron Solovechik

Aryeh Lelb Spitz
Irvington, N.J.

Pinchas Hirschprung

Boruch Leizerowsky

Chaim Kreiswirth
Antwerp, Belgium

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