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Behind the Aegis

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Member since: Sat Aug 7, 2004, 03:58 AM
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A fan of comedy? A fan of history? Then, you have to watch this HBO special!

Whoopi Goldberg did a documentary on the irrepressible Moms Mabley. It is a fantastic account of her life and contributions to comedy and society, as a whole. There are a number of live clips of her performances and interviews with a number of people in the comedy world. There was only one showing tonight on HBO; I have no idea why. There will be other showings coming in the new year, but it is supposedly on "HBO: On Demand" and on "HBO Go." If you can catch it, do it! Here is a clip from "The Merv Griffith Show" in 1969 of Moms singing "Abraham, Martin, and John." It isn't the clip from the show, but it is still very good.

Posted by Behind the Aegis | Mon Dec 30, 2013, 04:54 AM (4 replies)

Kristallnacht: 75 years ago in pictures








(Above: Arrest of Jews in Baden-Baden, Germany, escorted by the SS after Kristallnacht with a sign stating: G-d does not forgive us)


(Above: Jewish men being deported from Baden-Baden after Kristallnacht)


(Synagogue in Siegen, Germany)


(Above: Berlin, Germany, the ruins of the Fasanenstrasse Synagogue)














(Above: The bottom tagline: "The Jews are our misfortune.")
Posted by Behind the Aegis | Sat Nov 9, 2013, 02:47 AM (29 replies)

Obama: 75th Kristallnacht anniversary a reminder of what silence in face of hatred can bring

Source: Jerusalem Post

US President Barack Obama marked the 75th anniversary of Kristallnacht on Friday, saying that the 1938 pogrom in which Nazis burned synagogues and murdered Jews across Germany serves as an example of what silence in the face of hatred can bring.

"I join millions of people in the United States and around the world in marking the 75th anniversary of the tragedy of Kristallnacht – “the Night of Broken Glass,” Obama stated.

"On November 9 and 10, 1938, Nazi paramilitaries marched under the cover of darkness throughout the towns and villages of Germany and Austria smashing Jewish storefronts, arresting Jewish men en masse, ransacking Jewish homes, burning books and littering the streets with the parchment of sacred Judaic texts," the US president stated.

"Throughout the two-day wave of violence, hundreds of synagogues and thousands of businesses owned by Jews were destroyed or damaged. At least 91 Jews were killed, while another 30,000 were sent to concentration camps," he continued.



Read more: Obama: 75th Kristallnacht anniversary a reminder of what silence in face of hatred can bring



From earlier today:


Statement by the President on the 75th Anniversary of Kristallnacht

I join millions of people in the United States and around the world in marking the 75th anniversary of the tragedy of Kristallnacht – “the Night of Broken Glass.” On November 9 and 10, 1938, Nazi paramilitaries marched under the cover of darkness throughout the towns and villages of Germany and Austria smashing Jewish storefronts, arresting Jewish men en masse, ransacking Jewish homes, burning books and littering the streets with the parchment of sacred Judaic texts. Throughout the two-day wave of violence, hundreds of synagogues and thousands of businesses owned by Jews were destroyed or damaged. At least 91 Jews were killed, while another 30,000 were sent to concentration camps.

Kristallnacht foreshadowed the systematic slaughter of six million Jews and millions of other innocent victims. Seventy-five years later, Kristallnacht now signifies the tragic consequences of silence in the face of unmitigated hatred.

As we mark this anniversary, let us act in keeping with the lessons of that dark night by speaking out against anti-Semitism and intolerance, standing up to indifference, and re-committing ourselves to combatting prejudice and persecution wherever it exists. In so doing, we honor the memories of those killed and reaffirm that timeless call: “Never Again.”

http://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/2013/11/08/statement-president-75th-anniversary-kristallnacht


http://www.democraticunderground.com/10024002844
Posted by Behind the Aegis | Sat Nov 9, 2013, 01:45 AM (27 replies)

Kristallnacht anniversary still haunting for child refugee from Nazi mobs

One afternoon, five-year-old John Izbicki woke from a nap to find the streets outside his Berlin home curiously quiet and empty. As the trams had stopped and there was no one to be seen, he decided to indulge himself and began skipping down the road with three dangerous words on his lips. "I'm a Jew," he shouted. "I'm a Jew."

The sense of liberation afforded him by what turned out to be an air-raid drill was, he remembers, quite spectacular.

"There was I thinking, as a wee lad, 'This is marvellous – I can now say I'm a Jew without fear'."

Less amused was his father, who rushed out of his haberdashery shop to scoop up his son and ask him if he was trying to get them arrested.

"That," says Izbicki, "was the beginning for me."

Three years later – and 75 years ago tomorrow – Izbicki stood on the balcony of his home on Invalidenstrasse and watched as the pogrom that would come to be known as Kristallnacht – the night of broken glass – gathered its hateful momentum. It was the morning after his eighth birthday and the mob beneath him had turned its attention to the Jewish-owned leatherware shop opposite. Very soon its window, like thousands of others that day and night, had been smashed.

more: http://www.theguardian.com/world/2013/nov/08/kristallnacht-anniversary-germany-child-refugees-nazis?INTCMP=ILCNETTXT3487
Posted by Behind the Aegis | Fri Nov 8, 2013, 11:25 PM (20 replies)

Antisemitism on the rise, says European survey

Poll of 6,000 Jewish people in eight EU member states finds three-quarters say problem has escalated over last five years

A survey of discrimination and hate crimes against Jewish people in Europe, released to mark the 75th anniversary of Kristallnacht (night of broken glass), suggests that antisemitism is on the rise, with three-quarters of those polled reporting an increase in the last five years and growing fears over online abuse and hate speech.

Two-thirds of those polled for the European Union Agency for Fundamental Rights (FRA) felt antisemitism was a problem, 76% thought the situation was getting worse and that antisemitism had increased over the last five years, and 46% said they worried about being verbally assaulted or harassed in public because they were Jewish.

A third were worried about being physically attacked, and 57% said they had heard or seen someone claim over the last year that the Holocaust was a myth or had been exaggerated.

Almost 6,000 Jewish people in eight EU member states – Belgium, France, Germany, Hungary, Italy, Latvia, Sweden and the UK – took part in the survey. The eight nations are home to 90% of the EU's Jewish population.

more: http://www.theguardian.com/world/2013/nov/08/antisemitism-rise-european-survey?INTCMP=ILCNETTXT3487

Related:

Fearful of anti-Semitism, 22% of European Jews hide identity

Almost a quarter of respondents in a major survey of Jews from nine European countries said they avoid visiting places and wearing symbols that identify them as Jews for fear of anti-Semitism.

Fear of wearing a kippah and other identifiably Jewish items was especially strong in Sweden, where 49 percent of 800 respondents said they refrained from such actions, in a survey conducted this year among more than 5,100 Jews by the European Union Agency for Fundamental Rights.


In France, 40 percent of approximately 1,200 Jews said they avoided wearing such items in public, followed by Belgium with 36 percent, according to preliminary results from the survey, obtained by JTA.
In total, 22 percent of respondents said they avoided “Jewish events or sites” because of safety concerns.

“The results show that a majority of European Jews are experiencing a rise in anti-Semitism,” Gert Weisskirchen, a former representative of the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe for fighting anti-Semitism, said Tuesday at a conference in Kiev.

http://www.timesofisrael.com/fearful-of-anti-semitism-22-of-european-jews-hide-identity/
Posted by Behind the Aegis | Fri Nov 8, 2013, 05:36 PM (0 replies)

From the archive: Kristallnacht

Seventy-five years ago the Nazi government unleashed the Kristallnacht pogrom against German Jews

On the night of 9 November 1938, the Nazi government coordinated a wave of attacks in Germany and Austria, on synagogues, Jewish-owned businesses and homes.

This was Kristallnacht - the night of broken glass. Over two days some 90 Jews were killed in an orgy of violence, while around 30,000 Jewish males were rounded up for deportation to concentration camps. Over 1,000 synagogues were burned or damaged.

The Manchester Guardian's first reports of the pogrom appeared on 11 November 1938.



more: http://www.theguardian.com/theguardian/from-the-archive-blog/2013/nov/08/kristallnacht-guardian-archive-1938
Posted by Behind the Aegis | Fri Nov 8, 2013, 02:30 PM (12 replies)

The Last Blood Libel Trial

One hundred years ago today, in a courtroom in Kiev, then part of the Russian Empire, the most famous accused murderer on Earth rose to declare, “I am innocent.” Mendel Beilis, a 39-year-old father of five, had spent more than two years in squalid prison cells waiting to say those words. The Russian and world press had been waiting, as well, to cover one of the most bizarre cases ever tried in an ostensibly civilized society. The Russian state had charged Beilis, a Jew, with the ritual religious killing of a Christian child to drain his blood for the baking of Passover matzo.

Beilis’ 34-day trial in the fall of 1913 made international headlines. The frame-up of an innocent man on a charge seemingly out of the Dark Ages provoked widespread indignation and drew the attention some of the era’s greatest personages. Leading cultural, political and religious figures such as Thomas Mann, H. G. Wells, Anatole France, Arthur Conan Doyle, and the Archbishop of Canterbury rallied to Beilis’ defense. In America, the Beilis case made for inspiring collaboration between Jews and non-Jews. Rallies headlined by the likes of social reformer Jane Addams and Booker T. Washington drew thousands. The New York Times headlined an editorial “The Czar on Trial.”

The blood libel—the notion that Jews commit ritual murder to obtain Christian blood, generally the blood of children—originated in Western Europe in the 12th and 13th centuries. The historian Anthony Julius has called the blood libel the “master libel” against the Jews. It directly inspired the rampant metaphor of the Jews as economic “bloodsuckers.” More subtly, it underlies the slander of the Jews as a disloyal, conspiratorial, and parasitical force that exploits its hosts, sucking society’s energy.

It has been a remarkably persistent infection, sometimes lying dormant for decades, then erupting violently. In the latter decades of the 19th century, the blood libel experienced a rather mysterious revival in Central Europe, with upward of 100 significant cases in which specific allegations of ritual murder were made to the authorities or at least gained wide popular currency. Most of the cases were in Germany and Austria-Hungary. The accusations resulted in a half-dozen full-fledged ritual murder trials, some of which sparked anti-Semitic riots. (With the exception of an ambiguous case in Bohemia—in which the defendant was convicted, but the state officially rejected the ritual motive—all the suspects were acquitted.) Historians have reached no consensus on the precise causes of this phenomenon. But the wave was undoubtedly linked to the rise of modern anti-Semitism that culminated in some of the worst horrors of the 20th century.

Please take the time to read more...

This is a x-post from GD (hat tip ashling).
Posted by Behind the Aegis | Thu Oct 10, 2013, 12:24 AM (1 replies)

Jewish essentials: For most American Jews, ancestry and culture matter more than religion

What does it mean to be Jewish? There are few more fundamental and difficult questions for Jews — indeed, figuring out one’s place within Judaism’s 3,000+ years of tradition, 620 commandments (plus a library’s worth of commentary), worldwide diaspora and multiple religious movements is itself key to many Jews’ self-identity.

Jews tend to be less religious than the U.S. public as a whole, with fewer saying they attend religious services weekly, believe in God with absolute certainty, or that religion is very important in their lives. The Pew Research Center’s landmark new survey of American Jews found that overall, about six-in-ten (62%) say being Jewish is mainly a matter of ancestry and/or culture, while just 15% say it’s mainly a matter of religion. (The rest cited some combination of religion, ancestry and/or culture.)

Those views varied considerably by religious movement, or lack thereof: While fully two-thirds of Reform Jews (and 80% of Jews who didn’t identify with any movement) say being Jewish is mainly a matter of ancestry and/or culture, only 15% of Orthodox Jews do. Nearly half (46%) of Orthodox Jews say being Jewish is mainly a matter of religion, while more than a third (38%) cite religion in combination with ancestry and/or culture. (In general, Orthodox Jews are the strictest about observing traditional Jewish law and Reform Jews are the least strict, with Conservative Jews in between.)

When we asked Jews about what is and is not essential to their own sense of Jewishness, 73% say remembering the Holocaust is essential (including 76% of Jews by religion and 60% of Jews of no religion). Almost as many Jews, 69%, say leading an ethical and moral life is essential, and 56% cite working for social justice and equality; only 19% say observing Jewish law is essential.





more...
Posted by Behind the Aegis | Wed Oct 2, 2013, 12:59 AM (2 replies)

Ambassador of Denmark honors countrymen who saved Jews during World War II

Source: Jerusalem Post

The Ambassador of Denmark to Israel, accompanied by more than 100 Danish Jews, gathered at a high school in the capital Tuesday to honor the 70th anniversary of Denmark’s rescue of more than 7,000 Jews from Nazi persecution.

During a two-day incursion between August 29 and October 1 in 1943, the Nazis, who occupied Denmark at the time, attempted to deport the country’s nearly 7,500 Jews to death camps, but were defeated during a spontaneous uprising coordinated by Denmark’s citizens.

---snip---

“What is unique about this story is that it was not the act of one or two or three people – it was an act by all the people of Denmark who came together to rescue the Jewish community because Jews were an integral part of their society,” he said.

---snip---

“No Jew was forced to wear a Star of David in Denmark because the Danes thought it would be an assault on the cohesion and values of their society,” said Vahr. “The people of Denmark said: ‘No! We will not accept any measures that infringe on the rights of any group – be they Jews or any other.’” On October 1, 1943, Vahr said 7,000 Jews were ferried to safety with the aid of fellow Danes, while 400 were deported to Theresienstadt.


Read more: http://www.jpost.com/Jewish-World/Jewish-Features/Ambassador-of-Denmark-honors-countrymen-who-saved-Jews-during-World-War-II-327629
Posted by Behind the Aegis | Wed Oct 2, 2013, 12:42 AM (7 replies)

Across enemy lines, wounded Syrians seek Israeli care

Source: Reuters

NAHARIYA, Israel (Reuters) - Not a hundred miles from Damascus, a Syrian rebel lies in a hospital bed, an Israeli sentry at the door. Nearby a Syrian mother sits next to her daughter, shot in the back by a sniper.

What started this year as a trickle is now a steady flow of Syrians, scores of civilians and fighters wounded in the civil war and being discreetly brought across the Golan frontline into Israel - a country with which Syria is formally still at war.

For all the advantages it brings of excellent medical care, it is a journey fraught with risk for those who fear the wrath of President Bashar al-Assad's government.

"There was one man, where I am from, who was treated in Israel. The regime forces killed his three brothers," the teenage girl's mother said. "They will kill my sons and my husband if they ever find out we were here."

For fear of retribution back home, Syrians in Israeli clinics who spoke to Reuters asked not to be named.


Read more: http://news.yahoo.com/across-enemy-lines-wounded-syrians-seek-israeli-care-190816353.html



A bit of a long article.
Posted by Behind the Aegis | Fri Sep 13, 2013, 09:49 PM (18 replies)
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