Daily Israel Report

Israel's Values Are its Strength, Says Rabbi Shmuley Boteach

Rabbi Shmuley Boteach suggests a new Israeli reaction to world criticism – take pride in Jewish values.
By Eliran Aharon, New York
First Publish: 6/20/2013, 10:35 PM

Rabbi Boteach
Rabbi Boteach
Rabbi Boteach's official website

Rabbi Shmuley Boteach, the flamboyant and controversy-arousing rabbi who has made it to Newsweek's list of the 50 Most Influential rabbis in the United States three times, is known for his public relations savvy and his unusual approach to interpersonal and spiritual relationships in Jewish tradition.

However, when he spoke to Arutz Sheva, the outspoken author of the much criticized - and popular - Kosher Sex: A Recipe for Passion and Intimacy  and Kosher Jesus, talked about the country he loves, Israel - and  suggested a new approach to dealing with criticism of Israel in a video interview. Instead of going on the defensive, he said, Israel should play up its unique values.



America is loved for its values, and Israel can be too, he argued. “[America] is a country whose values are so righteous. And Israel has those values and more,” he said.

Rabbi Boteach also discussed his This World organization, which focuses on teaching Jewish values to the general public.

Jewish values could answer some of America’s pressing problems, he said, such as failing marriages and an increasing trend for children to be self-centered.

“We need a year of national service, the way Israel has,” he proposed.

Rabbi Boteach also discussed the Jewish approach to Christianity and Islam, another one of his interests.