Monday, May 22, 2017

This Day, May 23, In Jewish History by Mitchell A. Levin


May 23

142 BCE (23rd of Iyar): Simon the Hasmonean drove the Syrians and their allies out the citadel which was their last stronghold in Jerusalem.

1052: Birthdate of Philip I, King of France who passed away in 1108.   Philip’s life overlapped that of Rashi (1040-1105).  In his day, Philip certainly was more powerful than the wine merchant of Troyes. But how many people study Philip today and how many Rashi read.  Philip was the king during the First Crusade.  However, he was not allowed to participate because Pope Urban II had excommunicated him. This may account, to some extent, why the Jews of France did not suffer in the same as did their Germanic co-religionist during what turned out to be the start of one of the deadliest periods of Jewish history.

1275: King Edward I of England ordered the cessation of persecution of Jews of Bordeaux, France.  This was at a time when English kings still had holdings in France and dreams of sitting on the French throne. This is the same Edward who will eventually banish the Jews from England after draining them of all of their wealth.

1420: Albert V (Austria) accused a rich Jew, Israel of Enns, of purchasing a wafer in order to desecrate it. All the Jews in the territory were jailed, dispossessed of their property, separated from their families and then subjected to attempts at forced conversion.

1420: At the behest of the Church, Duke Albrecht ordered the forcible conversion of the Jews of Austria. Those that had not converted or escaped or been sent off in the boats were burned at the stake on March 12, 1421, and their beautiful synagogue destroyed.

1421: Those Jews still remaining in Austria were imprisoned and/or expelled.

1423: Benedict XIII, the Avignon-based "antipope" known for his relentless persecution of the Jews died today.

1498: Girolamo Savonarola, a Dominican monk who was a violent opponent of the comparatively philo-Semitic Pope Alexander VI was convicted as a heretic and burned at the stake on the Piazza della Signoria in Florence.

1510: Emperor Maximilian of Germany rescinded a previously issued order to burn all Hebrew books.

1524: Ismail I, Shah of Persia and founder of the Safavid dynasty passed away. Conditions for the Jews of Persia declined under the Safavids when they adopted Shia Islam as the state religion. Shi'ism assigns importance to the issues of ritual purity ― tahara. Non-Muslims, including Jews, are deemed to be ritually unclean ― najis. Any physical contact would require Shi'as to undertake ritual purification before doing regular prayers. Thus, Persian rulers, and the general populace, sought to limit physical contact between Muslims and Jews. Jews were excluded from public baths used by Muslims. They were forbidden to go outside during rain or snow, as an "impurity" could be washed from them upon a Muslim.”

1533: The marriage of King Henry VIII to Catherine of Aragon is declared null and void. As a condition to their marriage, Henry’s father promised Catherine’s Spanish parents that Jews would never be allowed to settle in England.  When Henry decided to divorce Catherine he claimed that the marriage had taken place in violation of biblical law.  He sought the support of Italian rabbis in making this claim.  The Rabbis did not support the English monarch, probably figuring that there was no reason to antagonize the Pope (who was a lot closer) than a distant English monarch.

1536: In Portugal, Pope Paul III acting upon the petition of King John III, issued a Bull providing for the establishment of the inquisition based on the Spanish archetype. It lasted until September 1774 with the last auto da fe held in October 1765.

1552: Sebastian Munster, the first Christian to publish a complete edition of the Bible in Hebrew passed away.

1555: Paul IV began his Papacy during which he issued Dudum postquam, the papal bull that expanded a 10-ducat tax on Jewish synagogues to help finance catechumen houses in Rome and Cum Nimis Absurdum, the papal bull that “ordered the creation of a Jewish ghetto in Rome.”

1568: Netherlands declared independence from Spain. Protestant Dutch rebels led by Louis of Nassau, brother of William I of Orange, defeat Jean de Ligne, Duke of Aremberg and his loyalist troops in the Battle of Heiligerlee, opening the Eighty Years' War. The conflict combined politics and religion as Protestant Dutchmen rebelled against Catholic Spain.  Holland had provided a haven for Sepharidic Jews escaping the Spanish Inquisition.  A community of Portuguese merchants had settled in Amsterdam prior to the outbreak of hostilities.  The Protestant clergy were not exactly thrilled about the Jews settling in the country and it took several decades for the Jews of Holland to gain full acceptance.

1572 (18 Iyar 5332): On Lag B’Omer Moses Isserles, also known as the Rama passed away  Born sometime between 1520 and 1525, he was the son of Israel Isserles, “ a wealthy leader of the Cracow community who, in 1553, received royal dispensation to build a synagogue in memory of his wife which is known as the Ream Synagogue.”  Moses Isserles served as Rosh (Head of the) Yeshiva in Krakow. His main work was called Mappah Hashulchan ("The Tablecloth") which adapted Caro’s Shulchan Aruch to the needs and customs of Ashkenazi Jewry, It was called the “The Tablecloth” because it “covered” the Shulchan Aruch which is translated as “the prepared table.” In other words he covered Caro’s Sephardic Table with an Ashkenazic Tablecloth.  An earlier work, Darke Moshe Hakatzar (The Ways of Moses Abridged) was written in response to Caro’s comprehensive book on Jewish law called Beit Yoseph. He was known as well for the almost 100 Responsa he published. Isserles tried to strengthen the stature of many customs, elevating them almost to the level of Halachah (Jewish Law). On the other hand he was very lenient when it came to cases of stress or financial loss.

1578: The Ottoman Sultan rescinded the order to deport the wealthy Jews of Safed to the island of Cyprus. He did this because the Jews of Safed were said to be paying taxes which were used to help maintain the Dome of the Rock.

1618: In Prague, an assembly of Protestants threw three Catholic officials out of the window after they had found them guilty of violating a law concerning religious expression.  This event precipitated the Thirty Years War, so called because it lasted from 1618 to 1648.  Much of the war was fought in the Germanic principalities.  During the war Jews suffered at the hands of both sides with pogroms taking place in Frankfort, Worms and Jena.

1633: The French government issues an edict allowing only Catholics to settle in Canada.  The target of the ban was the Huguenots but it applied to the Jews as well.  Jews would not be able to settle in Canada until after the British were victorious in what Americans call the French-Indian War

1637(28th of Iyar): Seven Jews, including Rabbi Abraham ben Isaac, were murdered today in Cracow.

1708(4th of Sivan): Rabbi Solomon ben David de Oliveria, author of “Ez Hayyim” passed away today.

1749(7th of Sivan, 5509): Second Day of Shavuot

1749(7th of Sivan, 5509): Abraham ben Abraham, who had been a Polish noble named Count Valentine Potocki  before he converted to Judaism, was burned at the stake because he had renounced Catholicism and becoming a practicing Jew.

1773: Distinctions between Old Christians and New Christians were banned in Portugal. It was said this was because of a huge bribe from the Jews, but either way, this ban became law.

1788: South Carolina becomes the eighth state to ratify the U.S. Constitution. Thanks to John Locke who wrote South Carolina’s original constitution Jews, along with heathens and dissenters were guaranteed “freedom of conscience.” Jews began voting in the colony’s elections in 1702.  By 1750, there were enough Jews in the colony to warrant the building of the first synagogue in Charleston “which called itself “Beth Elohim” (House of God).  Francis Salvador was the most prominent Jewish leader when the Revolution began in 1775.  In 1790, South Carolina enacted legislation that was intended to abolish religious discrimination.

1794: Birthdate of Isaac Moscheles the native of Prague who gained fame as composer and pianist Ignaz Moscheles, one of many of his era who found a trip to the baptismal font to be a stepping stone on the ladder of upward social mobility.

1799: Aaron Worms married Rachel Lamart at the Great Synagogue in London.

1806(6th of Sivan, 5566): Shavuot

1825(6th of Sivan, 5585): First Day of Shavuot

1825: Alexander Jacobs, the son of Israel Jacobs and the former Elizabeth Abrahams was circumcised today in London.

1838: In Moravia, during what appeared to be an internal conflict in the Jewish community, the government issued a decree canceling the chief rabbi’s “privilege of proposing candidates’ to serve as rabbis at local congregations.

1838: Birthdate of Emile Worms, the French jurist born in Luxemburg, “educated at the University of Heidelberg” who earned his Dr. of Laws at the University of Paris in 1864 before becoming an assistant professor of law at his alma mater and professor of law at the University of Rennes.

1845: Samuel Henry Gluckstein and Hannah Joseph were today at the Great Synagogue in London.

1846: In Fürth, Bavaria, Joel and Babette (Elsasser) Krakauer gave birth to Adolph Krakauer who came to New  York in 1865 and then to Texas where became a successful merchant and leading businessman in San Antonio and El Paso, Texas before his death in 1914. 

1848:  Birthdate of Otto Lilienthal German born aviation pioneer.  He died in 1896 after one of his gliders failed to work properly.

1849: In London, Betsey Philips married 27 year old Montague “Myer” Gluckstein and became Betsey Gluckstein.

1851: Richard Lalor Sheil an Irish writer, orator, and Member of Parliament passed away. Jews should remember Sheil as a supporter of measures to allow Jews to sit as members of Parliament in the United Kingdom. Following the Rothschild’s election to the House of Commons Sheil delivered a speech entitled “On Disabilities of the Jews” that began included these words in the opening paragraph, “A British subject ought in every regard to be considered a British citizen; and inasmuch as the professors of the most ancient religion in the world, which, as far as it goes, we not only admit to be true, but hold to be the foundation of our own, are bound to the performance of every duty which attaches to a British subject, to a full fruition of every right which belongs to a British citizen, they have, I think, an irrefragable title. A Jew born in England cannot transfer his allegiance from his sovereign and his country; if he were to enter the service of a foreign power engaged in hostilities with England and were taken in arms he would be accounted a traitor. Is a Jew an Englishman for no other purposes than those of condemnation? I am not aware of a single obligation to which other Englishmen are liable from which a Jew is exempt; and if his religion confers on him no sort of immunity it ought not to affect him with any kind of disqualification.”

1856: Birthdate of Congressman Henry Mayer Goldfogle who urged President Wilson to “designate January 27, 1916 as the date for collecting funds for the relief of suffering Jews in Europe.”

1858: Birthdate of Isaac Tuck, the native of New York’s Old Seventh Ward and “pioneer in fruit trade journalism who “was one of the founders of the Fruit Trade Journal and Produce Record” and the Fruit and Produce Trade Association of New York City as well as a member “of the South Brooklyn Board of Trade and the Twelfth Assembly District Democratic Club.”

1859: Two Polish Jews, Philip Moses and Samuel Preiss filed a complaint today claiming that a tailor name William Meyer had attacked Preiss and stolen his watch while Preiss was in his store. The two plaintiffs gave such contradictory stories that it led the Judge to believe that Meyer was actually the victim of blackmail attempt.  He charged Moses and Preiss with attempted blackmail and filing a false police report.  The two complaining witnesses are now defendants and since they could make bail they are awaiting trial in the city jail. [So all of our ancestors weren’t Kohanim or psalmists, so what?]

1863: Ferdinand Lasalle formed the General German Workers ’Association (ADAV), Germany’s first labor party today.  He also began serving as its President, a position he would hold until his death in August of 1863.

1865: In London’s East End, “Joel Joel (a London tavern keeper of the King of Prussia), and Kate Isaacs, who was a sister of Barnett Isaacs (Barney Barnato) gave birth to Solomon “Solly” Barnato Joel the brother of Jack and Woolf Joel with whom he made a fortune in the South African diamond mining trade and the husband of actress Ellen Nellie Ridley.
http://www.jewishvirtuallibrary.org/joel-solomon-barnato

1866: Birthdate of Edgar James Banks, the oriental language professor and amateur archeologist who climbed Mount Ararat “in search of Noah’s Ark” and who sold the clay tablet that became known as Plimpton 322 which provided a window into the world of Babylonian mathematics and linguistics passed away today.

1870: The annual meeting of the Board of Delegates of American Israelites was held this evening at Temple Shaaray Tefila in New York City. The report of the Executive Committee included a comprehensive look at conditions of Jews in a various communities. The committee reported that the Governor of Syria had agreed to allow the purchase of land for a Jewish agricultural school.  Construction will begin as soon as the government at Constantinople gives its approval.  Romanian Jews, including those living in Bucharest, Vacco and Salatz have been the victims of violent attacks.  Jews continued to suffer in Russia and they continue to subject to laws prohibiting them from living near the frontier. Halevy has not begun his trip to China where he is to gain information on the condition of the Jews living there. At its recent meeting in Paris, the Universal Alliance reported that it had 12,000 members around the world. The committee urged that other states adopt laws similar to the one in New York that allows Jews who observe the Sabbath to work on Sunday, despite the existence of “Blue Laws.” The committee urged the Jewish population to support Maimonides College.  The committee credited “the good sense of the American public” that organizations attempting to Christianitize the U.S. Constitution had meant with little success. 

1871: An Imperial Ukase (proclamation) has been issued order the Jews of Poland to change their appearance by doing away with their long black coats and trimming their beards and side-curls.

1873: Birthdate of Rabbi Leo Baeck. His most famous work was The Essence of Judaism. He believed in ethical monotheism as part of the core of Judaism. Unlike contemporary rationalists, he also acknowledged that the mystery of God was also essential to Jewish belief. He saw the need for the experiencing God at the emotional level. This experience would lead to the ethical behavior. Also, Baeck saw the need for ritual as an affirmation of the concept of people hood. Baeck chose not to leave Germany. He was imprisoned at Terezienstadt. His faith survived the experience. He passed away in 1956.

1874(7th of Sivan, 5634): Second Day of Shavuot, Yizkor

1875: “An Interesting Jewish Ceremony” published today described the conversion ceremony of Henrietta Held at which Rabbi Marx Cohn officiated.

1875:  “Michel Levy: The Life of a Great French Publisher” published today described the shock in Paris at the death of this 54 year old literary leader and provided a detailed account of his life and accomplishments.

1877: In Paterson, NJ, Judge Barkalow will begin to hear evidence in divorce case involving Moses Fananholz (or Tananholz) originally from Chicago and his wife the former Rachel Blumenthal from Montreal.  The wife claims that her husband only married her for her money; that she that the ceremony was only for a betrothal under Jewish custom and not a marriage ceremony; and that since she was under the age of 18 (the age of consent) when the ceremony was performed the marriage was illegal.

1877: At Buffalo, NY, in the Episcopal Church of the Ascension, architect Cyrus Lazelle Warner Eidlitz the son of architect Leopold Eidlitz married Jennie Turner Dudley.

1879: “Proposed Hebrew Convention” published today described the preparations that are being made for the upcoming meeting in New York of delegates representing the “various branches of the Union of American Hebrew Congregations.  Agenda items will include a report on charitable activities and a report on the activities at the college the Union controls which trains young men to serve as rabbis.  One major topic of discussion will be the proposed to change Jewish Sabbath services from Saturday to Sunday.

1879(1st of Sivan, 5639): Rosh Chodesh Sivan

1884: As the May Laws took effect “Jews who had served in the army encountered difficulties, at the expiration of their terms of service, in resettling in the villages in which they had dwelt.”

1886: Birthdate of Moshe David Drabkin known as David Remez the native of Belarus who made Aliyah in 1913 with his wife Liba. At the end of his long, rich career he was one of those who signed the Declaration of Independence in 1948 and served as cabinet minister in Ben-Gurion’s first two governments.

1886: Ninety-year old German historian Leopold von Ranke who described Mosaic monotheism and “its revolt against nature worship” as the “principle on which is built a civil society which is alien to every abuse of power” in his Universal History, passed away today.

1887: Oscar S. Straus, the new United States Minister to Turkey and his family arrived in Constantinople today.  They had been expected ten days earlier but were delayed when their daughter became ill in Vienna.

1890: It was reported today Mrs. Charles Peterson claims an unnamed Jewish peddler had pitched her nine month old daughter into a tub of water.  The mother claims she “was absent at the time” and has not offered a basis for the claim.

1890: All of the children of the late Herman Frohman “applied for and secured from the Court of Common Please a writ de lunatic” which will force their mother, Mary Frohman, to answer charges that she is “a lunatic.”  This is part of a dispute over the estate of the deceased Jewish butcher.

1891: A fire broke early today at tenement house at 38 Ludlow Street which is home to 18 Jewish families.

1892: In New York City, “Selig and Goldie (Feigen) Peshkin gave birth to Dr. Morris Murray Peshkin, the Fordham graduate and husband of Lillian Rapaport who served as the clinical professor of medicine and pediatric allergies at Albert Einstein College of Medicine and the national president of the Asthmatic Children’s Foundation.

1892: “A resolution of sympathy for the Jews of Russia was introduced and passed” at today’s session of a conference of Methodist leaders being held in Omaha, Nebraska. “The resolution declared that it was the sense of the conference that the Jews in Russia were being unmercifully persecuted” and that “it was the hope of the conference that Russian Jews would soon enjoy the same rights as other people.”

1893: It was reported today there are only two Jewish murderers imprisoned at Sing Sing Prison in New York. Sixty year old Adolph Reich is serving a life sentence for having killed his wife.  He had been sentenced to death, but the Governor commuted his sentence. Charles Lovitz was found guilty of murder in the second degree after having shot his wife.

1894: On the second day of the First American Conference of Hebrew and Christian Workers for Israel, Reverend James Adler delivered a talk on “Dry Bones” which included a recitation of his problems in trying to convert Jews.

1894: “Congress of Liberal Religionists” published today described meetings being held at Temple Sinai in Chicago, Illinois that include representatives of Reform Movement and other denominations such as the Unitarians and the Ethical Cultural Movement with the hope “of securing closer cooperation between the denominations of liberal religious societies.”  The congress is an outgrowth of the Parliament of Religions which was held in Chicago during the World’s Fair.

1895: It was reported today that Max Casten, alias “Jew Sam” has been arrested in St. Louis, MO, on charges of stealing $2,500 worth of diamonds

1898: Martin Beir, the Rochester fire insurance agent, was in New York on business today

1898: “Patriotism of the Jews” published today included a declaration by Rabbi Rudolph Grossman that the United States war with Spain “was of Divine ordering” and that Spain’s kingdom in the western hemisphere is “finished

1898: It was reported today that there one thousand Jewish officers in the Austro-Hungary Army, that one further of the officers in the French Army are Jews and that there were 10,000 Jews in the Union Army.

1898: During the Spanish-American War, Corporal Leo Witkovski of Tampa, FL serving in Company M of the 1st Florida Volunteer Infantry was among those mustered into federal service today.

1899: Charles Latimer who has been accused of being one of the men who attacked Leopold Levy is being held by police.  Levy has died of from the wounds that Latimer and his unknown compatriots inflicted on the 49 year old salesman.

1900: Birthdate of Franz Leopold Neumann “a German-Jewish left-wing political activist and labor lawyer, who …is considered to be among the founders of modern political science in the Federal Republic of Germany.”

1900: Herzl seeks support at a meeting with Ernest von Koerber, Austrian political leader who served as Prime Minister from 1900 to 1904.

1903: In Buffalo, NY, a special committee submitted a resolution to the American Baptist Missionary Union condemning “the recent massacre of the Jews in Russia.”

1903: Following the Kishinev Pogrom Wenzel von Plehve, Russian Minister of the Interior “rebuffed a Jewish delegation that asked for a condemnation of the massacre and relaxation of anti-Jewish rules.”

1903: Herzl writes to Wenzel von Plehve, Russian Minister of the Interior and to Konstantin Pobiedonostzev asking them to arrange an audience with the Czar. Herzl also turned to Bertha von Suttner and asks for her assistance in this matter. Von Sutter was an Austrian writer, pacifist and the first woman to win the Nobel Prize for Peace.

1907: In Albany, NY, State Senator Martin Saxe introduced a bill “which provides for important amendments to the Civil Rights Act” which was prompted by the refusal of the Marlborough-Blenheim Hotel in Atlantic City to  rent rooms Mrs. Bertha Rayner-Frank and her nieces because they were Jewish.

1907: “Apology to Mrs. Frank” published today described events surrounding the Marlborough-Blenheim Hotel’s refusal of service to Mrs. Bertha Rayner Franks and her two nieces because they were Jewish and the subsequent apology by Josiah White & Sons, the Atlantic City hotel’s owner.

1908: Birthdate of architect Max Abramovitz. Two of his most famous designs were Lincoln Center and the UN building.

1909(3rd of Sivan, 5669): Elias Solomon, an Australian politician, passed away. Born in 1839, in London, England, he migrated to Australia as a child. He had no formal education, but in 1868 became a clerk and auctioneer in Fremantle in Western Australia. In 1877 he was elected to the Fremantle City Council. In 1892, he was elected to the Western Australian Legislative Assembly as the member for South Fremantle, where he remained until 1901. In that year, he transferred to federal politics, winning the Australian House of Representatives seat of Fremantle for the Free Trade Party. He was defeated by Labor's William Carpenter in 1903.

1910: Celebration of the Geiger Centenary.

1910: Birthdate of bandleader Artie Shaw. Born Arthur Jacob Arshawsky in New York, he became a popular "big band" bandleader whose hits included "Come'on my House".

1911: Dedication ceremony of the New York Public Library.  Over the next century, the library would provide countless generations of Jews a variety of cultural and educational opportunities.  The library’s “Dorot Jewish Division is one of the great collections of Judaica in the world and the most accessible for both scholarly and personal use. While the collection offers commentary on all aspects of Jewish life it also includes Hebrew and Yiddish-language texts on general subjects.”

1912(7th of Sivan, 5672): Second Day of Shavuot, Yizkor

1912: “The remains of the late General Morris Horkheimer” who died yesterday at Atlantic City “accompanied by his family” are scheduled to arrive in Wheeling, West Virginia “at 9:30 this morning…and will be removed to the family home at 800 Main Street and arrangements for the funeral.

1912: Tonight, at a meeting of the American Immigration and Distribution League at the Hotel Manhattan, Montefiore G. Kahn, Acting Secretary of the organization, announced that he would give the league 13,000 acres of farming and clay lands in New Jersey, valued by the donor at more than $2,600,000. The land was to be parceled out free to deserving immigrants who desire to become farmers.

1914: Birthdate of actor and critic Leo Lerman, author and editor for style setting magazines including Mademoiselle, Vogue and Vanity Fair.

1915: “The Illinois Equal Suffrage Association, Political Equality League and Women’s Club” are among the organizations supporting the gathering of “Chicago women…in the big banquet hall of the Auditorium Hall” scheduled to take place this afternoon to protest the execution of Leo M. Frank.

1915: In response to questions about clemency for Leo Frank, the Governor-elect’s views published today state that “You can just say for Nat Harris that if the matter of dealing executive clemency to the condemned man is to be considered by him, the entire outside world will not be taken into consideration one it.  It is entirely a Georgia matter.”

1915: “A report telling of the relief work for the benefit of war sufferers in Palestine was issued today by the Provisional Executive Committee for General Zionist Affairs” chaired by Louis D. Brandeis.

1915: In New York, “the local Kehillah, or Jewish community meeting in the Concert Hall of Madison Square Garden today, endorsed the idea of holding a conference of delegates from Jewish organizations throughout the country to consider the plight of European Jews and to determine what could be done for the amelioration of their condition after the war.”

1915: “In remarks preceding his sermon this morning,” Dr. Madison C. Peters of the North Baptist Church on West Eleventh Street said, “I know the people of Georgia and it is unfair to judge all by those who are clamoring for the life of a man who by common consent I not innocent, has never had a fair trial.  The outcries of the mob against the defendant were not against Leo Frank – it was a cry against the Jew.”

1915: In New York this afternoon “at a meeting of the Alliance Israelite Universelle…a resolution was adopted after being seconded by Professor Richard Gottheil of Columbia to prepare a protest in the name of the Jews of the United States against the execution of Leo Frank” because those at “the meeting took the stand that the Frank verdict was the result of race prejudice…”

1915: “A letter from Leo Frank was received today by Harry A. Lipsky of the Daily Jewish Courier” in which the condemned man expresses his appreciation for the support of the Chicago community and stating “I am well and putting up as good a fight as I know how.”

1915: It was reported today that ex-Congressman William W. Howard of Augusta has been chosen to argue the case to grant clemency in the case of Leo M. Frank before Governor Slaton should the appeal to the State Prison Commission fail.

1916: Isidore Hershfield an attorney “who went to the war zone last October to represent the Hebrew Sheltering and Immigrant Aid Society,” “visited all of the battles fronts and distributed relief to Jews in the war area” is expected to arrive in New York today aboard the New Amsterdam.

1916: The last in a series of notes were exchanged between the Russians, French and British which finalized the terms of the Sykes-Picot Agreement which effectively “divided” the Ottoman Empire among the Allies while the outcome of WW I was still in doubt.

1916: Henry Morgenthau, the former U.S. Ambassador to Turkey is scheduled to address the Illinois Manufacturers Association at noon today after which he will leave for St. Louis and Kansas City “where he will continue his pleas for aid for the war sufferers.”

1916: A resolution was unanimously adopted by 1,400 at the convention of the Independent Order of B’rith Abraham requesting that the Governor of New York institute a public investigation of “the charges made by Max J. Klein that, because he was a Jews, he was barred from the Second Field Artillery, National Guard of NY by Captain Howard E. Sullivan of Battery D.

1916: At the concluding session of the 13th annual convention of the Independent Order of B’rith Abraham at the Amsterdam Opera House the following officers were elected: Grand Master – Leon Sanders; Deputy Grand Masters: Gustave Hartman, Abraham Rosoff, Max H. Schoen, Emil Zuker, Dr. George Sulton, Phillip P. Levy, Otto S. Hirsch, Hyman Winick, Jacob Zuckerman and Jacob Eaton; Grand Secretary – Max Hollander; Grand Treasurer – David Goldberg; Grand Trustee – Benjamin Eherenfeld and Counsel of the Order – Adolph Stern.

1916: “The organization of the first Kehillah on Washington Heights was completed at a meeting of of about 500 Jews” tonight in the Washington Heights Synagogue” on 161st Street where the speakers included Rabbi Judah L. Magnes, Chairman of the Kehillah of New York, Emanuel Hertz, and Dr. Elias Margolies.

1917: Funeral services are scheduled to be held this afternoon at Temple Jehosuah for fifty-eight year old Fannie Schwager, the wife of Morris Schwager

1917: This evening, “the workers of the Central Jewish Institute” hosted “a farewell banquet to mark the departure of Rabbi Herbert S. Goldman” for his new venture to improve life in the Jewish district centered on 116th Street which he called the “hell” of the city of New York.

1917: Funeral services are scheduled to be held this afternoon for Mrs. Abe Siegel the mother of Lawrence Siegel at Free Son’s Cemetery in Chicago.

1917: The annual meeting of the Jewish Home Finding Society of Chicago of which Mrs. Adolph Kurz is Secretary is scheduled to take place this evening at the Standard Club.

1917: The joint Foreign Committee of the Board of Deputies of British Jews and the Anglo-Jewish Association, “two of the most influential bodies of British Jewry” issued a statement opposing “Jewish resettlement in Palestine, as planned by the Zionist organizations.”

1918: It was reported today that “a dispatch from Paris states that the Jewish National Council has issued a protest against the atrocities committed upon the Jewish population in occupied Russia” while also charging “that pogroms have been organized by the German authorities who have aroused the peasants against the Jews.”
1919: Dr. Emil G. Hirsch and Julius Rosenwald are scheduled to be two of the guests of honor at luncheon hosted this afternoon by The Council of Jewish Women at the La Salle Hotel in Chicago.


1920(6th of Sivan, 5680): Shavuot

1922: Premier of "Abie's Irish Rose."  This was the first of over 2,500 performances seen by an estimated fifty million attendees.

1924: Police in Chicago pursued the investigation into the murder of Bobby Franks, whom they now knew was not being held for ransom since his corpse had been discovered.

1925: Birthdate of photographer Henry Wolf, owner of Henry Wolf Productions and the 1976 recipient of the American Institute of Graphic Arts Medal for Lifetime Achievement.
http://www.nytimes.com/2005/02/16/business/media/16wolf.html

1925: Esther Goldenbaum Schulman Lederberg and Rabbi Zvi Hirsch Lederberg gave birth to Dr. Joshua Lederberg “an American molecular biologist who is known for his work in genetics, artificial intelligence, and space exploration. He was awarded half of the Nobel Prize in 1958 for his research in genetic structure and function in microorganisms. The other half of that year's prize was shared by Edward Lawrie Tatum and George Wells Beadle. In addition to his contributions to biology, Lederberg did extensive research in artificial intelligence. This included work in the NASA experimental programs seeking life on Mars and the chemistry expert system Dendral. Lederberg’s parents had moved to the United States from Palestine in 1924.  His father was an Orthodox Rabbi. Fortunately for the world of science when Lederberg was Bar Mitzvahed in 1938 he received a copy of Bodansky's” Introduction to Physiological Chemistry,” a book that he said had a tremendous impact on his scientific development.

1926: Birthdate of Amos Degani, the Tel Aviv native whose political career included serving as an MK from 1957 to 1969.

1926: Birthdate of Yossel Mashel Slovo, the native of Lithuania who as Joe Slovo became a leader in the anti-Apartheid movement while serving as a leader of the South African Communist Party and the African National Congress.
http://www.independent.co.uk/news/people/obituary-joe-slovo-1566935.html

1926: In Wilno Max Weinreich and Regina Szabad gave birth to linguist Uriel Weinreich.

1926: The United Jewish Campaign in New York is scheduled to come to an end today.

1927: Birthdate of Dieter Hildebrandt, the German non-Jew who directed the Academy Award nominated documentary “The Yellow Star – The Persecution of the Jews in Europe 1933-45.”

1929: Birthdate of Marvin J. Chomsky who won Emmy Awards for his direction “Holocaust” in `978 and “Inside the Third Reich” in 1982.

1929: “The Crown,” a play by David Calderon premiere in Tel Aviv in a production directed by Alesksei Dikiy.

1929: In Palestine, the leaders of Ahdut HaAvoda and Hapoel HaTzair, the two major labor parties sign an agreement that will merge the two parties into one.  The merger is slated to take place on July 25.

1930: After having earned his LL.B in February and passed the New York State Bar Exam, Chicago White Sox Catcher Moe Berg. who had injured his knee during an exhibition game with the Little Rock Travelers, “returned to the starting line-up” today.

1930: In Brooklyn, David and Eva Kellman gave birth to Dr. Charles D. Kelman, the clinical professor of ophthalmology and “father of phacoemulsification.”

1932(17th of Iyar, 5692): Eighty-year old textile manufacturer and philanthropist James Simon who provided funding for several archaeological digs passed away today.

1933: It was reported today that detectives who had questioned Waxy Gordon (born Irving Wexler) about the murders of Max Hassel and Max Greenberg “got the impression that he might welcome a jail sentence” for federal income evasion “since rival gunmen are said to be out to murder him and his associates.”

1933: Birthdate of Alvin Ira Malnik, the St. Louis born businessman “with long-lasting business and personal relationships with members of the Rat Pack” who “purchased and remodeled The Forge restaurant in Miami Beach” with the late Jay Weiss.

1933: The all-Jewish Platoon of the Shanghai Volunteer Corps was expanded to an all-Jewish company under the command of Captain Noel S. Jacobs. While the unit’s chaplain was Rabbi Mendel Brown, the leader of the Sephardic community, most of the members were Russian Jews

1934: The Palestine Jewish National Assembly orchestrated a general strike against the immigration ban that was scheduled to last from noon until 7 p.m. this evening. During the strike, fifty Jewish strikers in Tel Aviv were wounded in clashes with the police. Twenty of the wounded were described as being in serious condition. 

1935: Joseph "Yosky" Toblinsky participated in the hijacking of a truck while driving through Sullivan County today escaping with $8,000 worth of pharmaceutical drugs.  He also kidnapped the driver and his assistant.  Born in 1879, Toblinsky “was a New York City racketeer who, as head of an independent gang on East Side Manhattan, was involved in extortion and poisoning horses with the Yiddish Black Hand during the early 1900s. He was… sent to Sing Sing Prison for cruelty to animals in 1902.”

1936: As Arab violence continued, “on the Jaffa-Jerusalem road, just outside of Jerusalem, two light tanks and two trucks carrying troops were fired upon from the Arab Village of Ainkarem.”

1936: Secretary of the Interior Harold L. Ickes is scheduled to deliver an address which will broadcast this evening from the Astor Hotel where the New York United Palestine Appeal is hosting a dinner to mark the start of it drive to raise $1,500,000 for the aide of European Jews seeking settlement in Palestine.

1936: “Night riders of the Black Legion, a terroristic secret society” whose “prospective members are asked if they will take arms against Jews, Negroes and Catholics” are the leading suspects in the murder of a 32 year old Works Project Administration (WPA) worker in Detroit.

1936: Declaring that German refugees in France, Holland, Czechoslovakia and other European countries were in a ‘precarious’ condition the American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee announced” today “emergency appropriations were being made to meet the needs of the victims” over and above the five thousand dollars sent monthly to Holland, the ten thousand dollars sent to Czechoslovakia and the more than twelve thousand dollars sent to Austria.

1937: Birthdate of Jerome Rosenberg who would hold the dubious distinction of being the longest serving prisoner in New York State when he died.

1937: Ninety-seven year old John D. Rockefeller passed away.  To the world at large, he was the founder of Standard Oil, one of the robber barons, etc.  But he was also the founder of the Rockefeller Archaeological Museum

1938: As Arab violence continued unabated, The Palestine Post reported that Yitzhak Yitzhaki, 55, was attacked and stabbed to death by two Arabs near the Beit Vegan quarter of Jerusalem. Ezekiel Muncik, 25, a supernumerary constable from Kfar Yona was shot and killed during one of the Arab attacks on Hanita. Another young settler, Abraham Katz was severely wounded only one hour later and it was impossible to Ctake him to hospital. A police sergeant, injured in an earlier attack, died of his wounds in the Haifa hospital. Two Arabs were injured by a bomb explosion in Tiberias.

1939(5th of Sivan, 5699): Erev Shavuot

1939: Following the adoption of the infamous MacDonald White Paper which all but put an end to Jewish immigration in Palestine, Winston Churchill, who was still a political outcast, spoke in favor of Jewish immigration telling the House of Commons, "So far from being persecuted, the Arabs have crowded into the country and multiplied till their population has increased more than even all world Jewry could lift up the Jewish population.  Now are being asked to decree that all this is to come to an end.  We are now asked to submit, and this is what rankles most with me, to an agitation which fed with foreign money and ceaselessly inflamed by Nazi and by Fascist propaganda."  (According to Martin Gilbert, Churchill was right. "Between 1922 and 1939 more Arabs had entered Palestine than Jews."  Many of these immigrants were drawn to Palestine by the improving economic conditions which were often a product of Jewish settlement.  Ironically, these Moslems who came from a variety of North African and Middle Eastern countries would be counted among the "Palestinian refugees" that are with us to this date.)

1939: During a debate on the Peel Commission’s White Paper, Winston Churchill defends the Balfour Declaration and criticizes Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain for betraying the Zionists and turning his back on a document he had so ardently supported twenty years before.  “They (the Jewish settlers) have fulfilled his (Chamberlain) hopes.  How can he find it in his heart to strike them this mortal blow?” Upon hearing of the speech, Weizmann telegraphed Churchill” “Your magnificent speech may yet destroy this policy.  Words fail me to express thanks.”

1939: The Archbishop of Canterbury, Cosmo Long, criticized the McDonald White Paper in a speech in the House of Lords.

1939: In Palestine, on the eve of the Shavuot holiday, seven new settlements are established simultaneously. In all, twelve new settlements are established in May, expressing the faith that even in the grim new circumstances of the White Paper, settlement was one of the essential means of fighting for the Zionist aim.

1939: Isaac Nachman Steinberg a Russian born Zionist who was a leader of the “Territorialist Movement” arrived in Perth, Australia and began trying to gain support for the “Kimberly Scheme” – a plan in which “75,000” Jews fleeing Europe would be settled in the western part of Australia.

1940: Archibald Henry Maule Ramsay the anti-Semitic, pro-fascist Member of Parliament was arrested and lodged in Brixton Prison on an order under Defence Regulation 18B

1940: As French forces flee from the attacking German Army, Margaret and Hans Rey returned to Paris from Normandy.

1940:  Frustrated by "illegal" immigration into Palestine, British High Commissioner for Palestine Sir Harold MacMichael insists that Hungary accept the return of two Jews who had left Hungary and settled in Palestine in 1934 on tourist visas. The Hungarian government replies that there are an "excessive" number of Jews in their country and the government's aim is "that as many as possible should be encouraged to emigrate."

1940: Lord Lloyd, the Secretary of State for Colonies express his opposition to Prime Minister Churchill’s plan to arm the Jews of Palestine so that he could bring the 20,000 British troops stationed in Palestine home to defend against a possible German invasion.  Lloyd feared the reaction of the Arabs to what Churchill saw as a way of providing for self-defense while meeting the Nazi menace.

1941: Birthdate of Zalman King Lefkowitz  who as Zalman King gained fame as “a filmmaker who mixed artistic aspiration, a professed empathy for female sexuality and gauzy photography to bring soft-core pornography to cable television — particularly with his Showtime series “Red Shoe Diaries” in the 1990s…´(As reported by Douglas Martin)

1942(7th of Sivan, 5702): Second Day of Shavuot

1942(7th of Sivan, 5702): After having been tortured by the Nazis for at least two months, George Politzer was murdered by a firing squad.

1942: The Nazis deported the Jews from Stopkov, Slovakia, including the Findling family today and sent them to Auschwitz

1942: “Grand Central Murder” produced by B.F. Zeidman and featuring Same Levene “as Inspector Gunther” was released in the United States today.

1943: Nazi Aktionen kill thousands of Ukrainian Jews at Przemyslany and Lvov.

1943: U.S. premiere of “Mission to Moscow” a film treatment of the memoir of the former U.S. ambassador to the Soviet Union directed by Michael Curitz, with a script by Howard Koch and a musical score by Max Steiner.

1944(1st of Sivan, 5704): Rosh Chodesh Sivan

1944: In New York, Rabbi Samuel Belkin was inaugurated as President of the Rabbi Isaac Elchanan Theological Seminary and Yeshiva College. An honorary degree of Doctor of Law was conferred upon Supreme Court Chief Justice Harlan Fiske Stone and an honorary degree of Doctor of Divinity was conferred on Rabbi Isaac Rubinstein, former Chief Rabi of Vilna and a twenty six year member of the Sejm (the Polish Senate.) 

1944: In Peekskill, NY, June and David Polis gave birth to Susan Polis who gained fame as Susan Polis Schultz an American poet, producer of greeting cards and the mother of Colorado Congressman Jared Polis.

1945: Gestapo Chief Heinrich Himmler committed suicide.

1945: “Acting on SHAEF's orders and with the approval of the Soviets, American Major General Rooks summoned Dönitz aboard the Patria and communicated to him that he and all the members of his Government were under arrest, and that their Government was dissolved.”

1945: Two weeks after the German surrender, Chaim Weizmann writes to Prime Minister Winston Churchill appealing for an end to the White Paper and restrictions on Jewish immigration to Eretz Israel.  The appeal would fall on deaf ears.

1946: “The Devil’s Mask” directed by Henry Levin, with music by Irving Getz and featuring Ludwig Donath as “Dr. Karger” was released in the United States today.

1946: James Work was elected president of the National Farm School, after having served “as Acting President for many months during the illness of President Louis Nusbaum. The school was the creation Joseph Krauskoph, a leading American Reform Rabbi.

1946: A mob of rioting Poles attacked Zypora Frank and her family today which was Zypora’s birthday. According to Mrs. Frank, ''They threw stones, they were yelling, 'You take our coal and give us the Jews,' and somebody threw a grenade.'' Two people were killed, one right next to the 11-year-old girl, spattering her birthday dress with blood.  Following another pogrom in July, Mrs. Frank’s parents would decide to send their children to Palestine. They were sure that the Poles would finish what the Germans had begun.

1947: The British intercepted a three-masted Italian schooner today off the shore of Palestine containing 1,457 Jews who were trying to enter the country.  The Jews, most of whom were Polish, Russian or Hungarian, had been on the ship for over two weeks.  They had named the vessel Mordei Hagetaoth (Ghetto Fighters) and placed a sign on the deck, written in English proclaiming “From the ruins of the ghetto to our own country – our only refuge – Open the gates.

1947: It was reported today the “Zwi Brik, the former director of the Palestine Office in Lithuania” “the first Jewish refugee to be given a visa for Cyprus” “where more than 13,000 visaless Jews are confined” has set sail from Naples bound for the British controlled Island.

1948: Thomas C. Wasson, the Consul General for the United States in Jerusalem, died today after having been shot in an alley “by a .30 caliber rifle.”

1948: Today “New York Times reported that Thomas Wasson "on his death bed stated that Arabs had shot him," but two weeks later retracted this statement.’

1948: The only advance of the Arab Legion beyond the Old City walls into "Jewish Jerusalem" was halted in front of Notre Dame. The commander of the Arab Legion, Sir John Bagot Glubb (Glubb Pasha), considered that battle to be the worst defeat suffered by the legion throughout the war.

1948: Israeli forces take control of Ramat Rahel

1948(14th of Iyar, 5708): Rabbi Yitzchak Avigdor Orenstein, the Western Wall’s first rabbi and his wife were killed today during the shelling of Jerusalem by the Jordanian forces trying to seize the entire city for its King.

1948(14th of Iyar, 5708): “An Air Transport Command C-46 Curtiss Commando aircraft which flew from Czechoslovakia to Israel with the fuselage and engine of the first S-199 to be assembled in Israel, crashed as a result of heavy fog which covered Tel Nof and Sde Dov airfields. The navigator Moshe (Moses Aaron) Rosenbaum was killed. Ed Styrack the radio operator was badly injured, and both the aircraft and its cargo were destroyed.”

1948: The settlement of Allonei Abba was established by Holocaust survivors from Czechoslovakia, Romania and Germany. Even as the war with the Arabs was heating up, Jewish settlements were being started.  When you consider the conditions in Israel at the time, this hast to make the Jews “the eternal optimists” in the truest sense of the term.  The name of the settlement came from two Hebrew words.  Allonei is a form of the Hebrew word Allon, meaning Oak which served as a reminder of the Tabor Oaks that grew nearby.  Abba was the first name of Abba Berdichev.  Berdichev had parachuted into Czechoslovakia in 1943 with orders to assist British clandestine forces and aid Jews trapped in Hitler’s death trap.  Like so many of the others sent on such missions, Abba Berdichev was captured and killed.

1948: Egyptian forces began its attack on the Jewish settlement of Negba with an artillery barrage. The Egyptian force consisted of 2,000 well-armed troops as well as support from the Egyptians Air Force.  The Jewish force at Negba consisted of 70 soldiers from the Haganah and 75 members of the settlement.  They lacked artillery, air cover and pretty much anything else that a modern might need.  Negba had to be held to keep the Egyptians from reaching Tel Aviv.  The fight would last for nine days.

1949: The Federal Republic of Germany (also known as West Germany) is established.  There was a great deal of apprehension among Jews around the world to see an independent German nation rise four years after Hitler’s defeat.  During the 1950’s West Germany would pay reparations to the Jews and the state of Israel.  Additionally, Germany would provide military and economic support to the Jewish state despite pressure from a wide array of Arab states. 

1949: In the UK, release date for “The Perfect Woman,” featuring David Hurst in his first film role as “Wolfgang Winkel.

1950(7th of Sivan, 5710): Second Day of Shavuot

1958: Birthdate of Mitch Albom

1960(26th of Iyar): Rabbi Joshua Chaim Kasovsky, editor of “Mishnah Concordance” passed away.

1960:  Prime Minister David Ben Gurion announces in the Knesset that Adolf Eichmann, an Nazi SS officer, was abducted from Buenos Aires, Argentina, by Israeli agents and flown to Israel to stand trial for crimes against the Jewish people.

1960: In an article published in Life magazine, cartoonist Al Capp wrote "The secret of how to live without resentment or embarrassment in a world in which I was different from everyone else was to be indifferent to that difference.

1965: In New York, filmmaker Hava Kohav Beller gave birth to author and editor Thomas Beller.

1966(4th of Sivan, 5726): Seventy-five year old Lazarus Joseph the NYU basketball player, New York State Senator, New York City comptroller and active champion for the “rehabilitation of Jewish survivors of Nazism” whose son Jacob, a U.S. Marine died during the Battle of Guadalcanal, passed away today.

1967:  Egypt closes the Straits of Tiran and blockades the port of Eilat at the northern end of the Gulf of Aqaba to Israeli shipping, laying the foundations for the Six Day War.  A blockade like this is an act of war under international law.  In addition to which, it was a violation of the U.N. agreements that had ended the Suez Crisis in 1956-57.  After the Six Day War, there was a lot of nit-picking about whose planes attacked first i.e. who fired the first shot.  The fact of the matter is that this blockade was an act of war and anything the Israelis did afterwards was an act of self-defense.

1969(6th of Sivan, 5729): Shavuot is celebrated for the first time during the Presidency of Richard M. Nixon.

1969: As Israelis were celebrating Shavuot, Israeli security forces arrested numerous terrorists as they foiled attacks in on both sides of what had been the Green Line.

1970: Birthdate of Yigal Amir, the coward who murdered Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin.

1971(28th of Iyar, 5731): Yom Yerushalayim

1972: Thomas Paul Malone began serving as Canadian Ambassador to Israel.

1977(6th of Sivan, 5737): First Day of Shavuot

1978:  The Jerusalem Post reported that the Army Ombudsman, Rav-Aluf (Res.) Haim Laskov, complained that the cruel harassment of recruits by their non-commissioned officers and officers was still a recurrent phenomenon in Israel Defense Forces.

1979(26th of Iyar, 5739): Three people were killed and thirteen more were injured when a bomb was detonated at a bus stop in Petach Tikva.

1979: Joseph Brodsky Russian born Jewish poet and essayist who would go on to win the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1987 and would be chosen Poet Laureate of the United States (1991-1992) was inducted as a member of the American Academy and Institute of Arts and Letters.

1981(19th of Iyar, 5741): Entertainer George Jessel passed away.

1981(19th of Iyar, 5741): Russian-born Canadian lawyer and political leader David Lewis passed away. His son is an official with the UN dealing with AIDS in Africa and his grandson Avi Lewis is a broadcast journalist.

1981: Syria claimed that it had shot two Israeli drones while Israel admitted the loss of only one pilotless plane.  The aircraft which were flying a recon mission over eastern Lebanon fell victim to Syrian missile batteries stationed in the Syrian occupied portion of that country.

1981: U.S. Presidential envoy Philip Habib arrived in Beirut on a mission designed to keep the situation on the Syrian-Lebanon –Israel border from exploding into war.

1981: Rabbi Ronald B. Sobel, senior rabbi of Temple Emanu-El officiated at the wedding of Sheryl E. Israel and Barry J. Spiegel. The bride’s father is Kenneth M. Israel, president of Cinema Shares International Television Ltd., and chairman and chief executive officer of the Excel Video International Corporation,

1982(1st of Sivan, 5742): Rosh Chodesh Sivan

1982:  The New York Times featured a review of Bronx Primitive: Portraits in a Childhood by Kate Simon who “grew up Jewish in the Tremont Avenue section of the Bronx, having been brought there by her young immigrant parents direct from the Warsaw Ghetto, with only a brief stopover on the Lower East Side.”

1982: At Cannes, premiere of “Pink Floyd – The Wall” starring Bob Geldoff, the grandson of “Amelia Falk, an English Jew from London and with music by Bob Ezrin and Michael Kamen

1983: “One Day At A Time” starring Bonnie Franklin completed its 8th season.

1984: At the Cannes Film Festival, premiere of “Once Upon a Time in America” the crime film based on The Hoods the novel by Harry Grey (born Herschel Goldberg) the tells the tale of Jewish boys from the Lower East Side who grow up to be big time hoods.

1985: Ronald Reagan awarded Sydney Hook the Presidential Medal of Freedom.

1987: As part of the IPO’s 50th anniversary celebration, James Levine conducts the orchestra for a second time.

1988(7th of Sivan, 5748): Second Day of Shavuot; Yizkor

1990(28th of Iyar, 5750): Yom Yerushalayim

1995: ABC broadcast the final episode of “Full House” a sitcom starring Bob Sage

1996(5th of Sivan, 5756): Erev Shavuot

1999: The Chicago Jewish Historical Society is scheduled host “Preserve Your Family and Community History” an Oral History Workshop at the Spertus Institute.

1999: The New York Times featured reviews of books by Jewish authors and/or of special interest to Jewish readers including Another Life: A Memoir of Other People by Michael Korda.

2000(18th of Iyar, 5760): Lag B’Omer

2000: “Proof” the Pulitzer Prize and Tony Award winning drama starring Ben Shenkman as “Ben” premiered off-Broadway today.
2001(1st of Sivan, 5761): Rosh Chodesh

2001(1st of Sivan, 5761): “Asher Iluz, 33, of Modi'in was killed outside Ariel en route to supervise a road paving in the area, when Palestinian gunmen opened fire in an ambush.” (Jewish Virtual Library)

2001: Broadcast of the final show of series three of “Felicity” created by J.J. Abrams, starring Greg Grunberg as ‘Sean Blumberg.”

2002: Prime Minister Ariel Sharon replaced Eli Yishai as Minister of Internal Affairs.

2002: David Azulai completed his services as Deputy Minister of Internal Affairs.

2002: An Hamas detonated bomb at the Pi Glilot gas depot north of Tel Aviv failed to set off a catastrophic explosion.

2004: The New York Times featured reviews of books by Jewish authors and/or of special interest to Jewish readers including ''Still Life With Bombers: Israel in the Age of Terrorism'' by David Horovitz and ''How Israel Lost: The Four Questions” by Richard Ben Cramer.

2004: “Regarding the Torture of Others” by Susan Sontag was published today in the New York Times Magazine.

2004(3rd of Sivan, 5764): Eighty-nine year old historian, sociologist and orientalist Maxime Rodinson, whose parents were murdered at Auschwitz, passed away today.

2005: Today, “President George W. Bush nominated Rod Rosenstein to serve as United States Attorney for the United States District Court for the District of Maryland

2006: “In Israel, New Reflections on Holocaust” published today described evolving Jewish methods of remembering the Shoah. http://www.nytimes.com/2006/05/23/world/middleeast/23holocaust.html?_r=0

2006: Release date of “Blue Alert,” an album co-written by Leonard Cohen.

2007(6th of Sivan, 5767): First Day of Shavuot.

2007: The two day Tel Aviv Poetry Festival comes to an end.

2007: Amy Barrett and novelist Jonathan Lethem whose mother was Jewish gave birth to Everett Barrett Latham.

2007: Today tennis player Jesse Levine “lost his first college match in the quarter-finals in the NCAA Men’s Singles.”

2008: Norman Finkelstein was denied entry to Israel today “because, according to unnamed Israeli security officials, of suspicions that ‘he had contact with elements 'hostile' to Israel" including’ a top Hezbollah commander in Lebanon.” Finkelstein “visited south Lebanon and met with Lebanese families during the 2006 Lebanon War.” While ther he said: “Hizbullah represents the hope. They are fighting to defend their homeland, they are fighting to defend the independence of their country, they are defending themselves against foreign marauders, vandals and murderers and I consider it to be genuinely to be an honor to be in their presence.”

2008(18th of Iyar, 5768): Lag B’Omer.

2008: Bradlee Birchansky leads Friday Night Services at Temple Judah in Cedar Rapids, Iowa as part of his Bar Mitzvah weekend.

2008: In Plymouth (UK), police detained two men linked to the bombing of a Giraffe’s restaurant that had taken police yesterday. According to authorities, 22-year-old Nicky Reilly, a recent convert to Islam who police said had a history of mental illness, was wounded when a bomb went off in the Giraffe restaurant at a shopping center in Exeter, Devon. Giraffe, which has 25 restaurants around the UK, is owned by Jewish partners.

2008: “Public allowed rare chance to view Dead Scrolls,” published todayThe Columbia Dispatch reports on the public display of the 2,100 year old 24 foot scroll with the text of the bible’s book of Isaiah at the Israel Museum. Israel put the Dead Sea scroll containing the Book of Isaiah on display for the first time since 1967. The calfskin parchment was locked away because of deterioration. It will be available to the public for three months as part of the 60th anniversary of the founding of the Jewish state.

2009(29th of Iyar, 5769): On Shabbat, start reading the Bamidbar, Book of Numbers.

2009: Day 2 of “Conference 2009” hosted by the Philadelphia Kehilla For Jews at Aracadia University in Glenside, PA.

2009: A 24-year-old man was diagnosed with the swine flu on today, becoming the eighth person in the Jewish State to come down with the virus. He had recently returned from the United States and was presumed to have contracted the illness there. A second man had also been hospitalized due to concerns that he may have the virus as well.

2009: Franklin H. Littell, a father of Holocaust studies who traced his engagement with the subject to the revulsion he felt as a young Methodist minister while witnessing a big Nazi rally in Nuremberg in 1939, died today at his home in Merion Station, Pa., outside Philadelphia today at the age of 91. Dr. Littell also became an enthusiastic supporter of Israel, in part because he believed that its very existence refuted theologies that foresaw or favored the withering away of the Jewish people. He rejected the theology of some Christian backers of Israel that Jews must ultimately become Christian…” (NYT)

2010: “Dancing Alfonso” and “Ida’s Dance Club” are scheduled to be shown at the Israeli Film Night sponsored by Magen David Sephardic Congregation in Rockville, MD.

2010(10th of Sivan, 5770): Irwin Rosten, an award-winning documentary filmmaker perhaps best known for "The Incredible Machine," which took PBS viewers on a revolutionary voyage inside the human body in 1975, passed away today at the age of 85., http://www.nytimes.com/2010/06/04/arts/04rosten.html

2010(10th of Sivan, 5770): David Ginsburg, a liberal lawyer and longtime Washington insider who helped found the Americans for Democratic Action and led the presidential commission on race relations whose report, in 1968, warned that the United States was “moving toward two societies — one black, one white, separate and unequal,” died today at his home in Alexandria, VA at the age of 98 http://www.nytimes.com/2010/05/25/us/25ginsburg.html
2010: Despite gray skies that threatened rain, tens of thousands of people turned out for a massive celebration of Israel today, at the annual Salute to Israel Parade on Manhattan’s Fifth Avenue. Marching bands, groups hoisting colorful signs and costumed marchers converged along the parade route, running up Fifth Avenue between 57th Street and 74th Street. Celebrities, elected officials and dignitaries were on hand, including New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg, who has been the parade’s grand marshal in the past. This year, parade organizers made a concerted effort to mobilize the Israeli community living in New York, said Michael Miller, executive vice president and CEO of the Jewish Community Relations Council of New York, which oversees the event.
2011: The Ellis Island Old World Folk Band is scheduled to perform at the Reutlinger Community for Jewish Living in Danville, CA
2011: Phyllis Newman, who was married to Adolph Green for over four decades is scheduled to take part in program entitled “Carried Away: Being Comden and Green” that highlights the work of the team of Adloph Green and Betty Comden that created such hits as “On the Town,” “ Wonderful Town,” “ Bells are Ringing” and “Singin' in the Rain.”
2011: El Al flight 027 carrying 279 passengers landed safely at Ben Gurion Airport this morning after it was forced to make an emergency landing when a technical fault was found in one of its left wheels. The plane took off en route to New York late last night but was forced to turn back and perform an emergency landing when the pilots noticed that one of the left wheels had become jammed.  

2012: Dr. Leo Hershkowitz, Adjunct Professor of History at New York University and CUNY Queens College (ret.) is scheduled to deliver a lecture about the early history of Jews in New York City at the NYC Department of Small Business Services

2012: In London, The Wiener Library is scheduled to host a screening of “SS-3: The Assassination of Reinhard Heydrich,” a film about the British inspired plan to kill the ruthless ruler of Bohemia, person favorite of Hitler and a key planner of the Final Solution

2012: Film critic Aviva Kempner who was the founder of the Washington DC Jewish Film Festival is scheduled to deliver a lecture on a documentary film on which she is working that traces the life of Jules Rosenwald, the man who led Sears, Robebuck & Co during its glory days and was one of the nation’s leading philanthropists.

2012: Filming began for “Iron Man 3” a film based on characters created by Stan Lee and co-starring Gwyneth Paltrow.

2012: Nancy Margulies, the daughter of Joan Thaler – the doyen of the Cedar Rapids Jewish Community- is scheduled to perform her one-woman show “Deaf Poets Society” at Coe College in Cedar Rapids, Iowa.  Her most recent book, a spook entitled Klassic Koalas: The Koala Museum of Modern Art Catalogue is on sale at the Cedar Rapids Museum of Art.

2013: Nineteen year old Corporal Roi Alphi was killed when a landmine exploded in the Golan Heights laid to rest tonight in the military section of the cemetery of his hometown, Gan Yavne.

2013: The YIVO Institute for Jewish Research is scheduled to present 'Jews, You Should Fight to the Bitter End:' Bogoraz's Literary Response to the Gomel' Pogrom

2013: The Israel Festival, an annual showing drama, theatre, dance and music is scheduled to open in Jerusalem.

2013(14th of Sivan, 5773): Seventy nine year old singer/songwriter Giuseppe Mustacchi the son of Sephardic Jews from Corfu, passed away today

2013: A sketched map of Israeli prime minister Ehud Olmert’s land-for-peace offer to Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas in 2008 — hurriedly drawn up by Abbas after a meeting with Olmert that December, and made public for the first time today — suggests that Israel was prepared to withdraw to borders very similar to the pre-1967 lines and swap areas of northern and southern Israel in return for maintaining the larger settlement blocs.

2013: The Louvre museum in Paris opened its first-ever Israeli exhibit today, displaying a 1,700-year-old mosaic floor that was recovered from a garbage dump near Lod in central Israel.

2014: “Jewtopia” is scheduled to be shown at noon-time in Mason, Ohio, as part of Jewish American Heritage Month.

2014: “Donald Sterling has agreed to surrender his stake in the Los Angeles Clippers to his estranged wife, and she is moving ahead with selling the team, a person with knowledge of the negotiations told The Associated Press today.

2014: A revised version of Assi Dayan’s “The 92 Minutes of Mr. Baum” is scheduled to open today in the United States.

2014: On the final morning of the 4th International Writers’ Festival, Etgar Keret and musician Shlomi Saban are scheduled to sing, read and chat in a one-off event. (As reported by Jessica Steinberg)

2014: “With the words of the Kaddish and a sprinkle of earth over his remains, Avner Less, the Israeli official who interrogated Adolf Eichmann was reburied today in Berlin’s Wannsee neighborhood, not far from the house where the senior Nazi who helped organize the Holocaust outlined his genocidal plans in 1942.” (As reported by David Rising)

2015: Parsha Bamidbar

2015(5th of Sivan, 5775):  In the evening, Erev Shavuot

2015: The JCC Manhattan is scheduled to host “The Paul Fieg Tikkun Leil Shavuot.”

2015: Today, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu thanked President Barak Obama for blocking a UN moved at forcing Israel to come clean on its nuclear capabilities en route to a Middle East zone free of nuclear weapons.” (As reported by Times of Israel)

2015: In Cedar Rapids, IA, Temple Judah is scheduled to celebrate Shavuot and the Confirmation of Jessica Heeren, Ben Sarasin and Gabrielle Thalblum

2015: According to an article published today in Rai al-Youm, “a London-based Arab newspaper,” “Saudi Arabia recently rejected an Israeli offer to provide it with Iron Dome rocket defense technology.”

2016: Professor Todd Endelman of the University of Michigan is scheduled to speak on “The Emotional Toll of Antisemitism and its Consequences” at Birbeck, University of London, Bloomsbury.

2016: In Des Moines, IA, Congregation Beth El Jacob is scheduled to offer “Chevra Kadisha Training.”

2017: According to information supplied “by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s office,” President Trump is scheduled to “arrive at Yad Vashem at 1 p.m.” and to begin his speech at the Israel Museum at 2:00 p.m.

2017: The Oxford University Jewish Society is scheduled to host “a delicious 3 course meal and a group discussion.”

2017: At sundown events marking a Jerusalem Day that is special because it marks the 50th anniversary of the reunification of the Jew are scheduled to begin.

2017: The Vancouver Jewish Film Centre is scheduled to host a screening “The History of Love.”

2017: ELI Talks, “a nonprofit organization devoted to nurturing and transmitting inspired Jewish ideas is scheduled to host an evening Beth Huppin, a Jewish Education from Seattle, Macy B. Hart, President and Founder, Goldring/Woldenberg Institute of Southern Jewish Life (ISJL) and Sam Novy a “social entrepreneur” from Baltimore,  MD.

 

 

 

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