The wedding of Inna Zyskind and Pavel Kogan last week was one of the happiest days of their lives.

Friends and family watched as they exchanged vows and rings under a canopy in their quirky designer outfits. Then more than 1,000 guests attended an open-air festival in Tel Aviv, with street performers and musicians, partying long into the night.

The couple’s only regret is that their marriage is not legally recognised in Israel. In fact, it was organised by activist groups as part of a colourful protest against religious restrictions on who can marry.

Inna, who was born in Russia, was able to move here and become an Israeli citizen under the state’s law of return for Jews. But she is not recognised as truly Jewish by Israel’s orthodox rabbinical establishment. And in Israel, only religious marriages, not civil ones, are allowed…

This was our demonstration,” says Pavel. “We’re secular people. We want to break the religious monopoly over this part of our life in Israel. We should be allowed a civil wedding…”

Good thing we needn’t worry about theocracy here in the good old USA.

  1. What? says:

    The Orthodox of any religion are DBs.

    They put the symbolistic practice of religion ahead of the spiritual meaning.

  2. Milo says:

    Most of the Orthodox in Israel live on welfare, breed like rabbits and are exempt from military service, so of course they are the darlings of the American right wing!

  3. Dallas says:

    Ahh, the Jewish Taliban and their rules.

  4. sargasso_c says:

    Why isn’t she recognised?

  5. sargasso_c says:

    Okay, I read the article and matriarch inheritance seems to be the problem.

  6. chuck says:

    So does that mean a Christian can’t marry another Christian in Israel? Or is this a case of Jews discriminating against themselves?

  7. Anonymous says:

    I don’t know who’s more foolish – the Israeli government for “their beliefs” or those idiots for choosing to go to Israel and protest by trying to get married in the first place. It’s all so stupid!

    As long as there is a choice, and from what I read there was a choice to go to darn near any other country in the world, then it’s all just a bunch of childish flailing. Move on!

    Now, if Israel or any other country/group go off oppressing, shooting or imprisoning people for no good reasons, like different beliefs or citing their own moral superiority or something, then that’s different. WAY DIFFERENT!

  8. Gary, the dangerous infidel says:

    Of course, Jewish law is not enforced outside Israel, so they have the help of “charities” like the Robert I. Lappin Foundation to work toward a similar goal in America by helping indoctrinate Jewish-American children to grow up rejecting non-Jewish relationships.

    Mission Statement:
    “Our mission is helping to keep our children Jewish, thus reversing the trend of assimilation and intermarriage.”

  9. MikeN says:

    With rocket attacks going at Israel, of course the marriage laws there are the problem. Don’t you dare support Israel and oppose those launching rockets. It makes you a hateful bigot.

  10. deowll says:


  11. What? says:

    Without religion, it would be obvious the value of that region. Hence the ridiculousness of the illegal marriage, of the positions of all those involved, of the mess.

  12. The Watcher says:

    The Ultra-Orthodox in Israel have far too much political power for their numbers….

    I don’t think I’d go as far as calling them “Taliban” – they’re not interested in murdering unbelievers, although the right to dispose of heretics and blasphemers is probably on their wish list.

    Assimilation is another story…. Jews of all sects generally don’t want it…. Judaism’s survival over the last 2000 years or so is largely based on not being willing to become their neighbors.

    Only those who seek to convert Jews to something else should be concerned about “non-assimilation” efforts, and it’s none of their business anyway.

    When Israel starts arresting (or worse) people for bringing copies of the New Testament or Koran into the country, call me….

  13. MikeN says:

    She has a solution within Israeli Jewish law, but it takes a year:

    “We try to explain the missing part in your history. You learn about the Jewish religion, traditions, the Halacha (Jewish law), and the Torah.”

    “You learn what a Jew has to do and practise it. If all goes well then you go to the Beit Din (rabbinical court) which decides whether to call you to the Jewish nation.”

    For Inna, this solution would be hypocritical.

    “I don’t like to fake religion,” she says. “I don’t want to make myself look religious to get approval that I’m Jewish enough and then return to my secular lifestyle.”

    So her real problem is that she doesn’t consider herself a Jew.

  14. foobar says:

    MikeN, her real problem is that she would like to get married.

  15. What? says:

    Once again, foobar goes right to the root of the issue.

  16. Observer says:

    I’d like a close up of that tit tat.

  17. Angel H. Wong says:

    How about if she verbally abuses him while at the same time comparing him to her relatives who are faring much better at doing the same things he does?

    Oh wait, she’s Russian; not American.

  18. MikeN says:

    Clearly the country of Israel should be wiped off the map.

  19. What? says:

    MikeN, you mean like Palestine was?

  20. foobar says:

    #19 And he nails the landing. 10 from the Russian judge.

  21. Mr. Fusion says:

    #9, Lyin’ Mike

    I agree. Israel should stop firing rockets into Gaza. There are far too many civilians being killed.

  22. MikeN says:

    #19 The nation once known as Palestine was wiped from the map, but it was reproduced under the modern name Israel, with an additional Palestine created for non-Jews. Historically Palestine was the name for Israel.

  23. harold says:

    Even if you’re jewish, sometimes you just aren’t jewish enough.

  24. Gary, the dangerous infidel says:

    In the end, I predict that no amount of racial purity will allow the Jewish people to inherit any enduring benefits from the promise they claim was made by their god to Abraham. Favoring Isaac’s bloodline and disfavoring that of Ishmael may set up a rivalry that enriches the mythology, but the effects can be dangerous when people actually start believing their own BS.

    Any god who would openly favor one bloodline over another must have taken delight in watching conflict. Good parents know better than to pick favorites from among their children and announce their preferences. I would think that the Creator of the Universe might be almost as wise as a good parent. Unfortunately, well-thought logic is seldom the controlling factor in a myth.

  25. GregAllen says:

    Wow, this reminds me of the Muslim countries I lived in.

    The government was constantly getting involved in issues of love and marriage. And it involved endless double standards.

    Muslim men could marry pretty-much whatever woman (or four) he wanted. But Muslim women could only marry good Muslim men — and often one chosen for them.

    Living over there for so long is one reason I’m a big advocate of gay marriage over here. The government banning gay marriage is a slippery slope to getting them involved in straight marriages.

  26. What? says:

    MikeN, it is good to see you’re comfortable with your overt racism.

    Obviously what Israel really is is a Consentration Camp engineered for Jews by Jews. The oligarchy tells Jews how to live, where to live, when to be frightened, when to be loyal to the ideals, and when to suffer.

    Gurion reneged on the agreement to repatriate the Palestinian Refugees after the “War of Independence”. While he is considered a National Hero in Israel, it could be considered that he is the origional source of the fear and pain that is experienced in Israel to this day.

  27. MikeN says:

    Perhaps they should tell Jordan to give back the land they seized from the Palestinians.

  28. MikeN says:

    >MikeN, it is good to see you’re comfortable with your overt racism.

    So what race am I overtly supporting, and what race am I overtly opposing?
    Careful, your own ignorance of the situation might show up. Then again perhaps Natalie Portman will post here to correct you.

  29. What? says:

    You’re racist against nonJews. And as I have Jewish blood, of which I’m very proud, you can’t pull that BS with me.

  30. gmknobl says:

    See, conservatives everywhere cause problems.


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