This Day in History – 25 Adar/March 7

25 Adar

This date was the first day of Creation, according to Rabi Yehoshua in Rosh Hashanah 10:2; according to Rabi Eliezer it was on 25 Elul.

In 3365/396 B.C.E., Nevuchadnetzar, the king of Bavel, died. [There are a number of opinions regarding the sequence of events of the next few days; we will adopt the braisa of Seder Olam. See Luach Dvar Yom B’yomo for further discussion of this topic.]

In 4941/1181, the King of France ordered all Jews in Paris attending shul on Shabbos to be detained for ransom.

In 5109/1349, the Jews of Strasbourg, France, were burned in the Jewish cemetery. Hy”d.

In 5256/1496, the Jews of Carinthia, Austria, were expelled; they were not readmitted until 5608/1848.

Yahrtzeiten

5521/1761, Harav Gershon of Kitov, zt”l

5694/1934, Harav Betzalel Yair Danziger of Alexander, zt”l

5722/1962, Harav Dovid Sperber, zt”l, the Brashover Rav and mechaber of Afarkasta D’anya

5733/1973, Harav Salman Chugi Avudi, zt”l, Raavad of the Sephardic kehillah in Yerushalayim

5763/2003, Harav Yisrael Yaakov Fisher, zt”l, Rav of Zichron Moshe, and Raavad of the Eidah Hachareidis of Yerushalayim


 

5730/1970

Harav Yitzchak Abuchatzeira, zt”l, the Baba Chaki

Harav Yitzchak Abuchatzeira was the son of Harav Masoud, and a grandson of the famed Harav Yaakov Abuchatzeira, the Abir Yaakov. He was born in Rissani, in Tafilalt, Morocco, in 5655/1895. His brother was Harav Yisrael, the Baba Sali.

As a child, Yitzchak stood out for his talents, and was seen as a Torah leader of the next generation. He learned in the yeshivah of his grandfather Harav Yaakov Abuchatzeira.

At the age of 13, in 5668/1908, he was orphaned of his father. Following the death of his brother Harav Dovid, who was killed by ruthless anti-Semites, he left the city, together with his brother, Harav Yisrael. They settled in Bodniv, where Harav Yitzchak was appointed leader of the community, at the young age of 25.

In 5685/1925, Harav Yitzchak traveled to Eretz Yisrael to facilitate the printing of the sefer of his grandfather, Harav Yaakov. En route, he made a stop in Egypt, where he davened at the kever of his grandfather, in Dimanhur.

He later returned to Morocco, where he founded the yeshivah that was led by his brother, the Baba Sali.

In 5706/1946, he was appointed Rav in Uren, Algiers, after moving there on his way to settling in Eretz Yisrael.

Harav Yitzchak eventually settled in Eretz Yisrael, in 5708/1948. He was appointed Rav of Ramle and Lod. He was known as a baal mofes, and many came to seek his brachos. He was known by the name Baba Chaki.

Shortly after his brother, Harav Yisrael, the Baba Sali, settled in Eretz Yisrael, the leaders of Netivot, most of whose residents were of Moroccan origin, invited him to move there. Within a brief period of time, Netivot became a famous and important town to which thousands flocked to receive the Baba Sali’s brachos.

One of the first to visit the Baba Sali in Netivot was the Baba Chaki, Harav Yitzchak. Harav Yisrael, who was happy to see his brother, held a special seudah in his honor. At the end of the seudah, he pleaded with Harav Yitzchak to remain in Netivot overnight. However, the Baba Chaki said that he had to attend to a number of affairs early in the morning and preferred to return to his home in Ramle that night.

Soon after Harav Yitzchak left Netivot, the car in which he was riding crashed. The Baba Chaki was seriously injured and was niftar that night.

Harav Yisrael was broken by the news, and for a long time the Baba Sali found it difficult to console himself over the loss of his beloved brother.

The levayah that was held the next day, 25 Adar II 5730/1970, was attended by tens of thousands who mourned the tragic petirah of Harav Yitzchak, the Baba Chaki.

His son, Harav Avraham, succeeded him as Rav of Ramle.

Zecher tzaddik livrachah.


 

March 7

In 1793, during the French Revolutionary Wars, France declared war on Spain.

In 1850, in a three-hour speech to the U.S. Senate, Daniel Webster of Massachusetts endorsed the Compromise of 1850 as a means of preserving the Union.

In 1876, Alexander Graham Bell received a patent for his telephone.

In 1912, Norwegian explorer Roald Amundsen arrived in Hobart, Australia, where he dispatched telegrams announcing his success in leading the first expedition to the South Pole the previous December.

In 1926, the first successful trans-Atlantic radio-telephone conversations took place between New York and London.

In 1936, Adolf Hitler ordered his troops to march into the Rhineland, thereby breaking the Treaty of Versailles and the Locarno Pact.

In 1945, during World War II, U.S. forces crossed the Rhine River at Remagen, Germany, using the damaged but still usable Ludendorff Bridge.

In 1963, the Pan Am Building (today the MetLife Building) first opened in midtown Manhattan.

In 1965, a march by civil rights demonstrators was violently broken up at the Edmund Pettus Bridge in Selma, Ala., by state troopers and a sheriff’s posse in what came to be known as “Bloody Sunday.”

In 1975, the U.S. Senate revised its filibuster rule, allowing 60 senators to limit debate in most cases, instead of the previously required two-thirds of senators present.

In 1994, the Supreme Court unanimously ruled that a parody that pokes fun at an original work can be considered “fair use” that doesn’t require permission from the copyright holder.