Ortho Group Worked on Hudson Crash Scene
Misaskim shows up whenever Jewish bodies are involved
The National Transportation Safety Board requested the services of Misaskim, an ultra-Orthodox organization that tries to ensure that Jewish victims of disasters and violent crimes are buried in accordance with religious law, after the air crash over the Hudson River last weekend, which killed five people on a tourist helicopter and three on a private plane, according to Yeshiva World News. Rabbi Jack Meyer, a Misaskim director, confirms his group was there, but says things happened a bit differently—the accident occurred on Shabbat, so Misaskim didn’t arrive right away, and it was through “the Jewish grapevine,” not through the NTSB, that they found out the Philadelphia family on board the plane was Jewish. But the government agency is regularly in touch with Misaskim after an incident if agents believe there are Jewish victims, said Meyer and Peter Knudson, a spokesman for the NTSB. “The last time we really dealt side by side was the train crash in Washington,” Meyer said, though it turned out in that case that none of the dead were Jewish. But when there are, he said, “we make sure that it gets buried as quickly as possible and [with] the least desecration of a body.” A similar organization in Israel specializes in collecting body parts and blood after terrorist attacks. And what if the victims are secular Jews who wouldn’t necessarily have wanted their remains handled by an Orthodox organization? “Doesn’t matter—Reform, Orthodox, Conservative—as long as you’re a Jew,” Meyer said.
Misaskim on the Scene of Plane/Chopper Crash on the Hudson [Yeshiva World News]
Daily rate: $2
Monthly rate: $18
Yearly rate: $180
WAIT, WHY DO I HAVE TO PAY TO COMMENT?
Tablet is committed to bringing you the best, smartest, most enlightening and entertaining reporting and writing on Jewish life, all free of charge. We take pride in our community of readers, and are thrilled that you choose to engage with us in a way that is both thoughtful and thought-provoking. But the Internet, for all of its wonders, poses challenges to civilized and constructive discussion, allowing vocal—and, often, anonymous—minorities to drag it down with invective (and worse). Starting today, then, we are asking people who'd like to post comments on the site to pay a nominal fee—less a paywall than a gesture of your own commitment to the cause of great conversation. All proceeds go to helping us bring you the ambitious journalism that brought you here in the first place.
I NEED TO BE HEARD! BUT I DONT WANT TO PAY.
Readers can still interact with us free of charge via Facebook, Twitter, and our other social media channels, or write to us at firstname.lastname@example.org. Each week, we’ll select the best letters and publish them in a new letters to the editor feature on the Scroll.
We hope this new largely symbolic measure will help us create a more pleasant and cultivated environment for all of our readers, and, as always, we thank you deeply for your support.