Merkaz ha-Rav ( Hebrew מרכז הרב , "Center of the Raw") is the first yeshiva of a religious Zionist orientation. It was founded by Chief Rabbi Eretz-Israel Abraham Yitzhak Cook in 1924 in Mandatory Palestine . Located on the new campus in Jerusalem in the Kiryat Moshe district. Almost all of the major religious Zionists in Israel are graduates of this yeshiva.
As part of his philosophy of creating a spiritual center of the Jewish people in Israel, Rav Kook saw the need to create a new type of yeshiva, the subjects of which would correspond to the new living conditions of the revival of the Jewish people in their historical homeland. Practical studies combined the traditional framework (study ( Talmud with commentary) with an in-depth study of the Tanakh, the foundations of faith, and Jewish philosophy.
At the head of the yeshiva were Rabbi Abraham Yitzhak Kuk, Rabbi Zvi Yehuda Cook , Rabbi Raanan. From 1984 to 2007, the yeshiva was headed by Rabbi Abraham Elkan Kahan Shapira , and from 2007 his son Rabbi Yakov Kahana Shapira .
The importance of the yeshiva increased after the Six Day War . After the Doomsday War , leaders of the Gush Emunim movement emerged from its walls.
On March 6, 2008, in an yeshiva building, an Arab terrorist shot students from the junior branch of the yeshiva from a machine gun . 8 students were killed, 11 injured, five of them severe.
The Guardian newspaper believes that “yeshiva Merkaz ha-Rav could become the target of the attack, as it is known as the center of the religious settlement movement in the West Bank. Jordan is especially closely associated with the Gush Emunim group, ”but admits that this could be just a coincidence   .
According to the Israeli Foreign Ministry, the Yeshiva Merkaz HaRav is Israel’s leading national religious yeshiva with hundreds of students. Among thousands of its graduates there are prominent politicians, high-ranking rabbis and IDF officers  .
- A double act of revenge: carefully planned atrocity strikes at Israel's spiritual heart Guardian, March 7, 2008
- According to the British organization Honest reporting , which aims at a balanced coverage of Israeli actions in the media (in its opinion it is often anti-Israeli), and other sources, the Guardian is known for its constant "shift" towards the Arab point of view:
- Guardian's One-Sided Analysis, HonestReporting, November 1, 2007 Archived April 4, 2008.
- The Guardian's Disappointing Response, HonestReporting, August 20, 2008 Archived October 13, 2009.
- A British journalist in Israel chronicles the shocking, systematic anti-Israel bias of the European media, by Tom Gross, June 27, 2007
- More Predictable Anti-Israeli Bias in the BBC and Guardian newspaper, by JohnDemetriou, December 28, 2008 (link not available)
- 'Guardian' editor apologizes for Jenin editorial, The Je Jerusalem Post, Mar. 3, 2008
- Terror shooting at Mercaz Harav Kook Yeshiva in Jerusalem, Mar 6, 2008