web analytics
October 24, 2014 / 30 Tishri, 5775
At a Glance
Sections
Sponsored Post
Meir Panim with Soldiers 5774 Roundup: Year of Relief and Service for Israel’s Needy

Meir Panim implements programs that serve Israel’s neediest populations with respect and dignity. Meir Panim also coordinated care packages for families in the South during the Gaza War.



It’s My Opinion: A Voyage From Hell

South-Florida-logo

Americans were riveted to their television screens by the story of the Carnival Cruise ship “Triumph.” The ill-fated voyage was interrupted by an engine fire that left the ship without power and adrift for five days in the Gulf of Mexico. Nonstop coverage documented the misery of passengers, who struggled without electric lights, air conditioning and working toilets.

Lavish meals and buffets were replaced by cold sandwiches. The smell of raw sewage was sickening. Accommodations were primitive. The press dubbed the journey “the voyage from hell.”

What happened on the Triumph was terrible, but was it really a voyage from hell? Perhaps the experience of passengers on another ship will put this in perspective.

On May 13, 1939, 930 Jews sailed from Hamburg, on the steamship St. Louis. Those who boarded were attempting to leave Nazi Germany. They saw what was coming. They tried to escape.

Arrangements for entry had already been made with the government of Cuba. The passengers carried visas. However, when the ship attempted to dock, it was told to turn away. The Jewish refugees were not welcome after all.

The anguished passengers became frantic. A man slashed his wrists and jumped overboard. The captain warned of mass suicide if the vessel were forced to turn back. The Cuban government was adamant. The ship was ordered to leave.

Those on deck sobbed. They feared that return meant concentration camps and death.

The ship hovered in the waters off the coast of Florida for three days. A ray of hope emerged. Certainly, America would understand the Jews’ dire predicament and take them in. Unfortunately, that was not to happen.

FDR also had problems. The quota for refugees had already been filled. Rules were rules, despite life and death circumstances. The State Department suggested the St. Louis passengers follow protocol and take their turns on the waiting list. The St. Louis was turned away and the ship was sent back to Europe.

The Triumph passengers returned to dry land with a hot shower and a good meal. Their ordeal was over. The ordeal of passengers on the St. Louis had just begun.

About the Author: Shelley Benveniste is South Florida editor of The Jewish Press.


If you don't see your comment after publishing it, refresh the page.

Our comments section is intended for meaningful responses and debates in a civilized manner. We ask that you respect the fact that we are a religious Jewish website and avoid inappropriate language at all cost.

If you promote any foreign religions, gods or messiahs, lies about Israel, anti-Semitism, or advocate violence (except against terrorists), your permission to comment may be revoked.

No Responses to “It’s My Opinion: A Voyage From Hell”

Comments are closed.

SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Current Top Story
Do you know where your vegetables grow?
Not So Kosher Shemittah L’Mehadrin
Latest Sections Stories
Nimchinsky-102414-Flag

This past summer was a powerful one for the Jewish people. I will always remember where I was on June 12th when I found out that Gilad, Eyal and Naftali were kidnapped. I will always remember the look on my sister’s face on June 30th when she told me that they were found. I will […]

Schonfeld-logo1

Avromi often put other people’s interests before his own: he would not defend people whom he believed were guilty (even if they were willing to pay him a lot of money).

Kupfer-102414

The Presbyterian Church USA voted to divest from three companies that do business with Israel.

How can I help my wife learn to say “no,” and understand that her first priority must be her husband and family?

My eyes skimmed an article on page 1A. I was flabbergasted. I read the title again. Could it be? It had good news for the Miami Jewish community.

Students in early childhood, elementary, and middle school were treated to an array of hands-on projects to create sukkah decorations such as wind chimes, velvet posters, sand art, paper chains, and more.

It is important for a therapist to focus on a person’s strengths as a way of overcoming his or her difficulties.

Sadly, there are mothers who, due to severe depression are unable or unwilling to prepare nourishing food for their children.

Michal had never been away from home. And now, she was going so far away, for so long – an entire year!

Though if you do have a schach mat, you’ll realize that it cannot actually support the weight of the water.

More Articles from Shelley Benveniste
South-Florida-logo

My eyes skimmed an article on page 1A. I was flabbergasted. I read the title again. Could it be? It had good news for the Miami Jewish community.

Students in early childhood, elementary, and middle school were treated to an array of hands-on projects to create sukkah decorations such as wind chimes, velvet posters, sand art, paper chains, and more.

Two of our brothers, Jonathan Pollard and Alan Gross, sit in the pit of captivity. We have a mandate to see that they are freed.

Chabad of South Broward has 15 Chabad Houses in ten cities.

Victor Center works in partnership with healthcare professionals, clergy, and the community to sponsor education programs and college campus out reach.

It’s Rosh Hashanah. A new year. Time for a fresh start. Time for a new slate. Time for change.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/sections/community/south-florida/its-my-opinion-a-voyage-from-hell/2013/02/28/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: