Most of you may already know about the Dulberg girls, two observant Israeli children taken away from their mother by the Italian courts. The Revered Rabbi Nissim Karelitz, shlita, has called this "the classic case of redemption of captives in our time."
In brief: After four years of divorce, Moshe Dulberg of Genoa Italy reopened custody hearings against his ex-wife Tali when he learned of her move towards observant Judaism. He claimed that being an observant Jew renders her unfit to act as mother to their two girls.
In an outrageous court case in which Orthodox Jews were likened to drug addicts and war criminals, the Italian courts accepted the father's claim. The mother's great love for her girls and the girls' adamant wish to remain with her were accepted as evidence against the mother as proof that she was indoctrinating the girls into a strange cult.
As a result, the court awarded complete custody to the father. The mother has been declared no longer legal guardian and is cut off from all contact with the girls in their native tongue, Hebrew. Her one monthly visit involves severe and complicated restrictions, and the girls are suffering as a result.
The father attempts to break the girls of their observant lifestyle. For example, he keeps the girls separate from one another and reads to them from the New Testament. Last year the father converted to Catholicism and has been baptized. For a full summary of this case, write to <firstname.lastname@example.org>
On a positive note, your emails, faxes, and letters of protest have apparently had a substantial effect. If you have not already done so, write, fax or email your protest to the following addresses, expressing your outrage respectfully, of course at the injustice of this court decision that denies the basic human rights of these girls and their mother:
- Ambassador Francesco Paolo Fulci/
Permanent Representative of Italy to the United Nations
Two U.N. Plaza, 24th Floor
N.Y., N.Y. 10017
- His Excellency Ambassador Ferdinando Salleo, Permanent Representative of Italy to the United States, Embassy of Italy
1601 Fuller St., N.W.
Washington, D.C. 20009
- The Honorable Carlo Azeglio Ciampi, President of Italy
Palazzo del Quirinale
Rome, Italy 00187