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‘V’ Is for Victory

The odyssey of Jack Tytell: An intimate look at the accused Jewish killer

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VII. ‘V’ is for Victory

The dingy plywood walls of cubicle number 20 in the Internet café on Jaffa Road in Jerusalem are the color of dirty pig’s skin. The owner of the Internet café told me Cubicle 20 is where Tytell sat almost every week. It was here that, according to reports, he allegedly typed emails to the Ortiz family, telling them his name was Daniel Ivgeny and he was interested in their Messianic services. Tytell would sit, resting his fingers on these black keys, worn down and caked with brown dirt, and stare into the white light of the screen and feel the distracted drone of a fast Internet connection and the buzz of caffeinated oxygen in a stuffy room. I am sitting in the technology pod, breathing in the sand-filled air, and I stare, hoping for a metaphysical connection that will help me understand this man and the nature of the evil that he brought with him. But nothing happens.

Instead I think back to a conversation I recently had with a man named Reuven. We were standing together at the edge of a settlement called Elazar in the Gush Etzion region of the Judean Hills. He pointed to the neighboring settlement, Betar Illit, where Mark and Dianne Tytell, Jack’s parents, reportedly live, and we watched the lights turn on as the sky grew darker.

“God told us to take the hills, and as you see that’s what we are doing,” Reuven said, pointing to the golden light perched upon the rolling mountains. “He who controls the mountains, controls the valleys.” He is clearly not crazy. Yet it is also clear that he regards his presence here as a kind of warfare.

Two days before, I had asked Michael Tobin, a Jerusalem-based psychologist, if he thinks everyone he meets here is convinced God spoke to them 30 minutes ago. He had laughed and said that in his entire career he had treated only one man who spoke like Tytell —who spoke about God commanding him to eliminate sodomites— and that person ended up going to the United States, where he was eventually convicted of murder.

I asked Tobin whether in a world of failing truths, did Judea and Samaria become a magnet for Jack Tytell’s dark matter? Did geography, and the absolutist values of the community that he saw himself as protecting, activate something inside the man that might have remained dormant in a less-pressurized place? Tobin, who is also a settler, was bothered by my question. Very educated individuals who are devoted to the land are attracted to the settlements, he said. He picked up his teacup and carried it to the sink as he thought out loud.

“Is this a place that attracts dark matter?” the psychologist said. “I don’t think so, but you never know. If anyone came to me saying they wanted to do these terrible things he’s accused of, I’d go right to the police.” He paused. “Yaakov is not an example of Jerusalem Syndrome. This is not a cute harmless man who thinks he is Jesus and his donkey is tied up at Jaffa Gate. He is a disturbed and dangerous man who will go to his grave at peace with himself for what he has done in the name of God.”

Will Yakowicz is a writer based in New York.

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Hershl says:

Remember Son of Sam?

He was the nice Jewish boy who in 1977 terrorized NYC and killed six people.

He got 25 years.

He became a born again Christian and now he is doing just fine, thank you.

http://jewishdailyreport.wordpress.com/2010/07/14/jewish-serial-murderer-makes-it-big-as-born-again-christian/

MaxS says:

Just think if he was a Palestinian he would be a hero to the whole Palestinian nation and the BBC would be interviewing him to try and understand the motivations behind his acts.

Odd this: “The settlement sits beneath Shilo, across the way from Eli off Route 60″. Actually, the community of Shvut Rachel, east of my living room window, is above about 90% of Shiloh. The urban center of Eli, with about 750 families, is to the north, with Shiloh in-between the two.

Yoni says:

Great article. So when is Tablet going to publish a 6 page intimate look at a Palestinian terrorist through the eyes of family, friends, teachers, and victims?

Yoni says:

“While tramping through the West Bank, not once was I, a gentile, treated with violence, hate, or disrespect.”

Yeah, I’m guessing he wasn’t an Arab gentile. Insightful.

Ken Besig Israel says:

Here we have a fellow, Yaakov Tytell, obviously disturbed and even declared unfit to stand trial by the government of Israel’s own forensic pyschiatrist. And yet with all this Tablet Magazine decides to publish a six page examination of his life, and probably totally fabricated “crimes.”
Tytell is plainly psychotic and lives in a fantasy world, and yet his rants and raves are taken as fact, and his confessions, however fantastic, are taken as credible.
I am a little surprised Tytell didn’t take credit for the Kennedy assassination or the 9/11 attacks in America as well.
The Israel Police have no physical evidence whatsoever showing that Tytell was in any way connected to any of the crimes he confessed to, a court appointed forensic psychiatrist has declared Tytell unfit to stand trial, and as even the simplest and unsophisticated person can see, Tytell is plainly psychotic.
The simple truth is that Tytell is probably not guilty of anything except being crazy and being used by the Israeli Police to clear their unsolved crime blotter.

Dani Levi says:

Tablet is the best.

brad friendly says:

An excellent piece of reporting, and why TABLET is quickly becoming a must-read for anyone interested in the Jewish world.

Dori says:

Wait, what?
“The Ortizes are convinced that other Jews hate their kind of Jews, who were <> and continue to observe many Jewish customs but believe that Jesus is the Messiah sent by God.”

…compared to…

“[David Ortiz] was <> in Puerto Rico and raised in Brooklyn,”

If you’re born a gentile, and believe in Jesus doesn’t that make you a Christian?

KenE says:

Think of all those progressive Jews who composed the Yevsektia (Jewish section of the SOviet Communist party) who were perps of mass murder. What in their background, schooling, ideology friends, world outlook… caused them to participate in heinous crimes?

I always look to Yisrael Medad for corrections … I am not exactly pro-settler, but he is a man I can trust.

As Max notes, it is noteworthy that Teitel is not lionized by Jews, but generally despised. If he were an Arab murderer of Jews, he would be well received by his people.

EdwinS says:

Hershl – Son of Sam wasnt ‘a nice Jewish boy’ – he was of Italian descent and adopted by a Jewish couple.

yoni says:

growing up jewish makes son of sam jewish. you dont know of jews of italian descent?

Dave the Locust says:

Son of Sam was indeed Jewish.

Although his surname at birth was ‘Falco’, his mother, Betty Falco was Jewish and he was the product of an extramarital affair that she had had with a Jewish man.

Mr. Falco insisted that the bbay be given up for adoption if they were to remain married, and that is how he came to be David Berkowitz.

Anyhow, who can look at that punim and honestly claim that he wasn’t Jewish?

Not that this is anything to be proud of!

He joins the dishonor roll of other shandas such as Roy Cohn, Joel Steinberg, Henry Kissinger, Joeseph Lieberman, and Kenny G!

Hershl says:

After many years we are now learning that at least one Spanish priest, during the Spanish Inquisition, was actually a covert Jew, whose personal ministry was to help Jews who had been forced to convert, die as Jews.

Mindblowing and totally unknown.

http://jewishdailyreport.wordpress.com/2010/07/18/jewish-inspiration-death-bed-confession-חיזוק-לעם/

rykart says:

JamesEJ says:

As Max notes, it is noteworthy that Teitel is not lionized by Jews, but generally despised. If he were an Arab murderer of Jews, he would be well received by his people.

———————————–

Rubbish. The vermin of Israel have certainly made a national hero out of the murderer Baruch Goldstein and turned his tomb into a monument where they like to congregate and celebrate his deeds. Netanyahu meanwhile, celebrates the blowing up of the King David hotel.

http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/world/middle_east/article690085.ece

Wonderful “people,” the Israelis.

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Beautifully written piece of journalism. Real impact! Thought provoking.
A great read. Thank you for publishing this! I’d like to read more by Yakowicz.

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‘V’ Is for Victory

The odyssey of Jack Tytell: An intimate look at the accused Jewish killer

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