Ten or more years ago this Rosner worked for an Israeli paper, maybe Haaretz. I used to read Haaretz when it was still free, so it was probably there but I’m not absolutely sure.
Once, he made an interview to a hassidic rabbi who was leaving to join a group in Uruguay. He had also just then published a book on the importance of not intermarrying.
So I wrote Rosner to ask the rabbi what was the point. I mean, why do you migrate to a country while at the same time denying yourself the possibility of marrying a local? What is the purpose then, to live there isolated from local culture, language, customs and what not?
Uruguay is a country that originally had almost no natives, and mostly anybody is descendant of European immigrants. And everybody mixes gladly with everybody: Spaniards, Catalans, Basques, Italians, Germans, Swiss, English and even some random American marry happily with everybody else. Origin or race (there are also descendants of African slaves) is not very important, even if the usual social or economic position apply, as usual. A number of Jews came around WWII, and even if not too frequently, they intermarry also.
So this is the place were this hassidics were, and the rabbi was going … only to abstain from intermixing. Do they really think that the ‘natives’ will not notice this blatant racism after a while? People usually don’t intermarry when they consider themselves above the rest, by some measure. When they consider themselves below or at the same level, where is the problem?
I asked Rosner to transmit this (and some more) to the rabbi, I was very interested in his answer. But Rosner never got back to me.
Oh well, probably the rabbi and his tribe of hassidics have long since ‘ascended’ to Israel and my questions will never get answered. As if I didn’t know …