A Profile on Yosef Ruach


Yosef hunches over looking at his feet as he strolls to Kollel. It creates a peculiar appearance along with his hawk nose and buck teeth. He can seem quite agreeable though, as he might agree with whatever you say. At the same time as he places himself above the “modern” (as he disparagingly refers to them), he can seem open to others’ ideas, as long as he deems it practical. He will smile, nod “yes” and make polite small talk and offer you help to create the illusion of a good person. There are still Jews here in Manchester who cannot imagine him having committed the deeds of which he has been accused. They must have been taken in with his ability to deceive.

Yosef comes across as a highly intelligent individual endeavouring to fulfil the minutia of Jewish Law. He is not at all a very practically inclined individual, but held previously a position as the Rosh Chabura of the Nets Kollel in Hechadash. He speaks in an impatient and demanding manner, especially to family members, yet does not ostensibly shout in front of others. A strange characteristic of his is he doesn’t look at you when he speaks, but tilts his head to the side, even when speaking to another man. On the other hand he will speak to women when needed, while removing his eyes (as many haredim do – and this statement is not intended to bash anyone). He is a professional shnorrer, asking both gevirim and regular avrechim at the Kollel for money. Surprisingly his wife claims proudly he doesn’t feel “it’s right to accept tsedaka as he receives benefits from the government” (a rather outright lie).

In addition to the “babysitter cover-up” Yosef spread other strange stories. Once when they lived in the middle of Broughton, an African looking man broke into their house and threatened them with a knife. As they didn’t have many valuables, he ran off with their righteous tsedaka box. Of course such incidents do take place, but how convenient it is to the psychopath to fabricate such stories to create pity and understanding with others.