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Who is this guy?

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This is a still taken from the beginning of a documentary on Haredi jews in Jerusalem: The Anti-zionist Jews of Jerusalem

I am curious to learn who this guy is, why he is dressed this way and what kind of festivity we are witnessing here?

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Related: judaism.stackexchange.com/questions/12419/… –  Yishai Jul 22 at 21:47
    
This question's been seen by a number of established users and has no closure votes, so I won't close it unilaterally, but it really seems to be off-topic. One of our standard closure reasons is: "Questions... about history or news of... Jewish individuals..., except as related to Judaism, are off-topic." See also meta.judaism.stackexchange.com/q/1473. Pinging @Yishai just because I can. –  msh210 Jul 23 at 5:21
    
@msh210, I think the last paragraph makes it on topic ("why is he dressed this way and what kind of festivity"). In this case, I would also think knowing who it is allows someone to further investigate those matters. –  Yishai Jul 23 at 14:20

1 Answer 1

up vote 10 down vote accepted

He is the Kaliver Rebbe.

[Rabbi] Menachem Mendel Taub (born 1923) is the Rebbe of the Kaliv Hasidic dynasty. Born in Transylvania in 1923, he is seventh in a direct paternal line to the founder of the dynasty, Rabbi Yitzchak Izak of Kaliv, a disciple of the Rebbe Reb Elimelech of Lizhensk.

An extremely talented Rabbi who recently moved his headquarters from Bnei Braq to Jerusalem. He speaks quite a few languages, and as a survivor of Auschwitz, he regularly speaks passionately about the Holocaust and Jewish unity. As a twin, Dr Mengele experimented on him and his sister (who didn't survive). Unfortunately, he was unable to have children as a result. See more here

As a Chassidic Rebbe, he regularly conducts tischen where his Chassidim will join him for his meal. This particular picture is likely on Tu B'Shvat when Rebbes are known to distribute fruit.

And, video caption aside, he is NOT anti-Zionist!

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As a chasidic rebbe, he wears a variety of colorful silk coats on various festive occasions. –  Yitzchak Jul 22 at 21:47
    
And he is "clean-shaven" because the Nazis pulled out his beard from the roots. –  YeZ Jul 22 at 21:51
    
@ YEZ I've heard that many a time, though don't believe it's true. Likely the experiments stunted his growth, though. –  Zvi Jul 22 at 21:52
    
@Zvi I actually heard it from him. I met him about 14 years ago. It is also true the rumor that he composes tunes to the posuk "Shema Yisroel" on the spot - he did so while we were there. –  YeZ Jul 22 at 21:58
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@YEZ, considering the kinds of experiments Mengele (yimach sh'mo) did and the kinds of things that can cause non-growth of a beard, and especially because (as this answer notes) "he was unable to have children as a result", I wonder whether (but I don't assume) he said it was pulled out as a euphemism. –  msh210 Jul 23 at 5:19

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