- The Washington Times - Tuesday, November 26, 2013

An Israeli rabbinical court has ruled that a mother must circumcise her son immediately, as required by Jewish law, or pay a fine of 500 shekels ($140) for every day he remains uncircumcised.

“The baby was born with a medical problem, so we couldn’t circumcise him on the eighth day as is customary,” the boy’s mother, Elinor, whose surname was not given, said in a report on Haaretz. “As time went on, I started reading about what actually happens in circumcision, and I realized that I couldn’t do that to my son. He’s perfect just as he is.”

The mother said that the father agreed not to circumcise the boy until the two decided to divorce. Now he is demanding that their son be circumcised, and the court said her refusal may have been part of a ploy to save her marriage, The Times of Israel reported.

“Circumcision is a standard surgical procedure that is performed on every Jewish baby boy, so when one of the parents demands it, the other cannot delay it except where it is proven to be medically dangerous,” wrote the judges, Rabbis Michael Amos, Shneur Pardes and Ariel Yannai.

“Fulfilling the command of circumcision is not a [mere] surgical medical act,” they added. “Brit milah [the rite of circumcision] is exactly what it says: a covenant that God made with His chosen people, the nation of Israel.”

The judges also expressed their view on the anti-circumcision movement taking place in the West.

“We have been seeing public and legal fights against circumcision in the United States and Europe for quite some time,” they wrote, as Haaretz reported. “The public in Israel stands united against this phenomenon, seeing it as another aspect of the anti-Semitic acts that must be fought.”

Elinor plans to petition the High Court of Justice to annul the rabbinical court’s decision.

“I have no right to cut his organ and mutilate him. And the court has no right to force me to do so,” she said, vowing that she would not pay the fine, The Times of Israel reported.

“I don’t have the means; I’m not working,” she said.