Thursday, January 13, 2005

R. Slifkin defends himself

As I and others noted, there is a discrepancy in what Deah v'Dibbur claims and what R. Gil Student notes in the banned books saga. D'vD claims that R. Slifkin refused to meet with the Gedolim. R. Student noted that R. Slifkin offered to meet but was refused. Here is a quote sent to me. As usual, I have no independent confirmation of this, but so everything from this source has been accurate. I assume that the I refers to R. Slifkin

The Real Story - On September 21st I was given the
ultimatum that I had six hours to withdraw my books
and publicly recant my views or face public
humiliation. I immediately tried to contact the four
Rabbonim who were about to condemn the books in order
to find out their precise objections (obviously I
would be willing to retract anything in the books that
was mistaken or, chas ve'shalom, heretical) and to
discuss the matter. Two of them immediately sent a
response that they refused to meet or speak with me.
One of them initially agreed to meet with me, and we
set a time to meet. The fourth, I was not able to
reach despite extensive efforts, but I left a message
that I was trying to reach him. The person who gave me
the ultimatum then contacted me and said that he had
heard that I was trying to arrange meetings, and he
said that I would not be permitted to meet with any of
the Rabbonim. The Rav with whom I had arranged a
meeting then called me back and said that he had
changed his mind and refused to meet with me. He said
"I am not one of the gedolim in this," and "you will
only try to argue and defend yourself." Approximately
two months later, someone who was not at all involved
said that he would be able to force this Rav to meet
with me, even though this Rav did not want to do so,
and this person would accompany me. I said that I
would think about it, and I ultimately decided against
it, for several reasons. One is that this Rav's letter
of condemnation had already been posted on walls
everywhere. Another reason was that this Rav had made
it clear to me over the phone that he was adamantly
opposed to hearing anything I had to say to defend
myself. I also had other reasons, but I will not make
them public at this time. A wise person may be able to
guess them.

R. Slifkin also has posted a lot on his web site here(lifted from a comment by Dov left on the Hirhurim site). Lots of good info

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