Beneath the Warsaw Ghetto

On January 18, 1943, the Jews of the Warsaw Ghetto arose in violent rebellion against further deportations. The struggle lasted an incredible three months. On April 19th, the Nazis began…

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The Ghetto Of Venice

The Jewish ghetto of Venice, made famous in William Shakespeare’s The Merchant of Venice ( “Shylock” ), was actually the very first “ghetto.” That does not mean that when the Venetian…

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The Warsaw Ghetto Uprising

The Warsaw Ghetto Uprising, which is famous for its month-long resistance struggle in April/May of 1943, actually began with an initial uprising on 12 Shevat 5703 (1943). When the Germans…

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The Warsaw Ghetto Uprising

The Warsaw Ghetto Uprising, which is famous for its month-long resistance struggle in April/May of 1943, actually began with an initial uprising on January 18, 1943, which corresponded…

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Good Fences Make Good Neighbors?

The term “ghetto” has a sad connotation in Jewish history and a very negative association when referring to certain poor urban areas. The term’s etymology, however, originates from a…

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Yad Vashem

Yad Vashem, The Holocaust Martyrs’ and Heroes’ Remembrance Authority, is one of Israel’s most famous destinations, visited by citizens, tourists and world leaders alike. To call Yad…

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Yiddish in Shanghai

During World War II, Japanese-occupied Shanghai, China, became a haven for Jewish refugees, most notably the students from the Mirrer Yeshiva. After the “Battle of Shanghai” in 1937, the…

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Florence

Florence, Italy, purports to be one of the oldest Jewish communities in Europe, dating back to at least 1159, when Benjamin of Tudela wrote of his visit to Florence, capital of the…

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Tisha B’Av

Tisha B’Av The saddest day in the Jewish calendar, believed to be a day which is destined for tragedy.  Guide…

Kinnot

KinnotMany devastating events took place on the 9th of Av. This is why the Jewish people consider it the saddest day on the…

Vayigash 5764-2003

"The Secret of Jewish Survival in Exile?" by Rabbi Ephraim Buchwald In parashat Vayigash, the exciting story of Joseph and his brothers draws to a conclusion. Joseph instructs his…

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Kee Teitzei 5774-2014

“Restoring Lost Possessions--Revisited” by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald Among the 74 commandments (47 negative and 27 positive) that are found in parashat Kee Teitzei is the mitzvah of…

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Minsk, Pinsk and Dvinsk?

Dvinsk, also known as Daugavpils or Duenaburg, is Latvia’s second largest city, situated 140 miles southeast of Riga, Latvia’s capital (Dvinsk is the city’s Russian name). Dvinsk became a…

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The Unspeakable

The Prophet Jeremiah, lived during the destruction by the Babylonians of Solomon’s Temple, and served as the Jews’ chief consoler as they were being exiled out of Jerusalem. Jeremiah’s…

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Soles and Souls on the Danube

The Danube River is closely identified with the city through which it runs, Budapest, Hungary. Yet that river was defiled in late 1944. On March 19, 1944, the German army conquered…

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Minsk, Pinsk and Dvinsk?

Dvinsk, also known as Daugavpils or Duenaburg, is Latvia’s second largest city, situated 140 miles southeast of Riga, Latvia’s capital (Dvinsk is the city’s Russian name). Dvinsk became…

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The Fate of Babel

Born on July 13, 1894, in Odessa,  Isaac Babel’s life spanned a tumultuous time in Russian history. Raised in a middle class Jewish home, Babel had both a full Jewish education and a…

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The Story of Irena Sendler

Despite the fact that Irena Sendler was recognized in 1967 by the Yad Vashem Holocaust Museum as one of the Righteous Among the Nations, her story was mostly unknown until 1999. That…

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The Missing Hero

According to a hand written document shared by the Soviet Union in 1957, Raoul Wallenberg died of heart problems in his cell on July 17, 1947. By the time the document was released, both…

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Surviving and Leading

Although born in Hungary in 1904, Rabbi Yehoshua (Joshua) Menachem Ehrenberg was living in Cracow when the Nazis began their systematic destruction of European Jewry. The city of Cracow,…

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A Poet from the Ashes

"There is nothing in the world for which a poet will give up writing, not even when he is a Jew and the language of his poems is German." One can only imagine the great burden Paul Celan…

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Writers in a Terrible Place

“The Day of the Imprisoned Writer” (November 15) was established by PEN International to recognize and provide support for writers who use their skills to fight political repression.…

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Shemot 5770-2010

"In Those Days, In These Times" by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald This message may be a little late, but there seem to be strong parallels between the story of the enslavement of the Jews in…

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Writers in a Terrible Place

“The Day of the Imprisoned Writer” (November 15th) was established by PEN International to recognize and provide support for writers who use their skills to fight political repression.…

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Surviving and Leading

Although born in Hungary in 1904, Rabbi Yehoshua (Joshua) Menachem Ehrenberg was living in Krakow when the Nazis began their systematic destruction of European Jewry. The city of Krakow,…

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Vayigash 5762-2001

"The Virtues of Assimilation" by Rabbi Ephraim Buchwald In this coming week's parasha, parashat Vayigash, the dramatic story of Joseph and his brothers comes to a rousing conclusion.…

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Shemot 5773-2012

“The Role of Exile in Jewish History” by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald In this week’s parasha, parashat Shemot, the book of Exodus opens with the story of the people of Israel’s enslavement…

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Steely Determination

Read about the steely determination and brave resistance on the part of those Jews who fought valiantly while the Warsaw Ghetto was being liquidated.

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Best-Seller

For a high school drop-out who failed English three times, Leon Uris had an outstanding career as a best-selling author. The Baltimore born (August 3, 1924) son of a Jewish paperhanger…

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The Girl in the Red Coat

Except for one girl's red coat depicted in a scene taking place in the Krakow Ghetto, and the opening and closing scenes in Steven Spielberg’s 1994 Academy Award winning “Schindler’s…

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