September 27, 2023

In another embarrassing gaffe which exposed his ignorance of Jewish customs, Israeli prime minister Yair Lapid referred to people on Yom Kippur who were “wearing Tefillin.”

In an official ceremony marking the 49th anniversary of the Yom Kippur war which broke out on October 6th 1973, Lapid described how “thousands of worshipers were torn from their shuls and forced to exchange their Talis for army uniform and their Tefillin for a gun.” Lapid was apparently unaware that on Yom Kippur, as on any other Yom Tov, Jews do not wear Tefillin.

Lapid continued and stressed that “they didn’t ask who is leftist or rightist, who is fasting or not fasting. The religious person who left shul and the secular person teaching his child to ride a bike fought side by side in battle.”

Lapid added that just as we make a reevaluation on Yom Kippur of our actions, leaders must be ready to make such evaluations. “We need to ensure that our eyes are alert to every danger, that we are not beholden to dangerous conceptions, that we do not miss opportunities for peace and do not ignore warnings of war.”

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