On the one hand, Rabbi Brad Hirschfield, co-president of CLAL – the National Center for Learning and Leadership, says, “This whole story says more about those Jews who attach importance to Madoff’s Jewishness, than it says about Madoff.”
He was not a religious man when he embarked on his crime spree, he was not a religious man when appointed to Yeshiva’s board, and there’s nothing particularly Jewish about him now. Madoff, the former Yeshiva University officer, told Politico that he doesn’t bother keeping kosher in prison.
The most Jewish thing about him is his victims. “Jews were disproportionately affected by Madoff’s crimes,” says Rabbi Hirschfield, “as all so-called Ponzi schemes play on ethnic, cultural or religious ties.”
Jonathan Mark, “Madoff, Five Years Later”, The Jewish Week (28 March 2014), 20.