A new highway into Jerusalem will be named for the late Rabbi Ovadia Yosef, the spiritual leader of the Shas party.
I didn’t need to ask directions. Stepping out of the Jerusalem Central Bus Station, I saw them, men in hats and coats walking together slowly, a steady stream moving east along one of Jerusalem’s central thoroughfares to the funeral of Rabbi Ovadia Yosef.
Rabbi Ovadia Yosef, the Israeli sage who founded the Sephardic Orthodox Shas political party and exercised major influence on Jewish law, has died.
In Hebrew, a "scholar who lacks sense" reads as talmid chacham b'li sechel. In any language, it sounds like an oxymoron. I first heard this in reference to Rabbi Ovadia Yosef, the former chief Sephardic rabbi of Israel, who this week called Holocaust victims "reincarnated sinners," and Palestinian Arabs "snakes." I took great offense when I first heard people referring to Yosef in this way.
After Rabbi Ovadia Yosef, ruler of the Shas (Sephardi ultra-Orthodox) party, caused an uproar this week by pronouncing a kind of Jewish fatwa on liberal Education Minister Yossi Sarid, one of Yosef's minions tried to jump into the fray.