The Saga Continues

There is still no compromise or resolution in sight in the bitter battle of succession between the two sons of the Grand Rebbe Moshe Teitelbaum, who died Monday night and left a vacuum in the leadership of the Satmar community.

On the contrary, the two factions keep campaigning and claiming victory.

According to a source, this weekend Rabbi Aaron Teitelbaum is coming to the city, where a tent will be set up at PS 16 in Williamsburg for thousands of the Rabbi’s followers to rally and show their support. Some of those same supporters just issued a statement announcing a ceremony to take place in “the coming weeks in Williamsburg” to appoint the older son as Grand Rebbe. That statement, which claims the support from Satmar congregations “around the world,” seems a bit premature, at best.

Scott E. Mollen, a lawyer who represents Zalmen Teitelbaum, said “It’s inexplicable how they can claim victory since it is now evident that the Grand Rebbe left a written will that expressed his desire that Rabbi Zalmen succeed the grand rabbi.”

He noted that the appellate courts has just yesterday reversed an earlier decision and put the main synagogue and Grand Rebbe’s home under the control of Rabbi Zalmen.

Moshe Indig, a supporter of Rabbi Aaron Teitelbaum, countered that “This is not a court issue, the court has nothing to do with succession.”

“This is a corporate issue,” Mr. Indig said. “We are talking about a half billion dollars in assets. The board members from Satmar community around the world want him (Rabbi Aaron) to be the successor. “There is going to be a big crowning ceremony.”

In other words, don’t expect concession speeches any time soon.

—Jason Horowitz