web analytics
August 30, 2015 / 15 Elul, 5775
At a Glance
Sections
Sponsored Post


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.

Current Top Story
IDF soldiers on patrol in Samaria. (file)
Terror Attack Near Kedumim
Latest Sections Stories
book-Lord-Get-Me-High

Even when our prayers are ignored and troubles confront us, Rabbi Shoff teaches that it is the same God who sent the difficulties as who answered our prayers before.

Schonfeld-logo1

I’ve put together some of the most frequently asked questions regarding bullies, friendship and learning disabilities.

book-Avi's-Choice

His parents make it clear that they feel the right thing is for Avi to visit his grandfather, but they leave it up to him.

There is a rich Jewish history in this part of the world. Now the hidden customs are being revealed, as many seek to reconnect with their roots.

There are times when a psychiatrist will over-medicate, which is why it’s important to find a psychiatrist whom you trust and feel comfortable with.

On November 22, 1963, Abraham Zapruder created one of the most famous, and valuable, pieces of film and became forever linked with one of the greatest American national tragedies when he stood with his camera on an elevated concrete abutment as President John F. Kennedy’s motorcade passed through Dealey Plaza in Dallas. Exhibited here is […]

“Worrying is carrying tomorrow’s load with today’s strength – carrying two days at once. It is moving into tomorrow ahead of time. Worrying doesn’t empty tomorrow of its sorrow, it empties today of its strength.” – Corrie ten Boom I’ve been thinking a lot about worrying. Anxiety is an issue close to my heart – […]

Don’t be afraid to try something different.

Upon meeting the Zionist delegation, General Wu, a recent convert to Christianity, said, “You are my spiritual brothers.

With the assistance of Mr. Tress, Private Moskowitz tried tirelessly to become an army chaplain.

Dr. Yael Respler is taking a well-deserved vacation this week and asked Eilon Even-Esh to share some thoughts with her readers in her stead.

More Articles from Shelley Benveniste
South-Florida-logo

“The OU Southeast regional office’s goals are synonymous with the broader mission of the Orthodox Union,” said Naftali.

Links of Life is a unique volunteer program designed to bring cheer and companionship into the lives of seniors throughout Broward and Dade counties. Designed for seniors living on their own as well as seniors in assisted living facilities, Links of Life pairs caring friends to visit on a weekly basis. They share experiences, spend quality […]

There was not even a flicker of outrage at the vandalizing of a synagogue.

An impressive group of counselors and staff members are providing the boys and girls with a summer of fun and Torah learning and a lifetime of wonderful memories.

Rabbi Sam Intrator recently led a summer program in Williams Island, located in Aventura. The event focused on how to find spiritual joy in Judaism. The rabbi cited biblical and Talmudic teachings, ancient Temple rituals, and the words of prayers to establish the role that love and positive thinking have in Torah values. Rabbi Intrator […]

The Iranian deal was sealed on July 14, four and a half months after Netanyahu’s visit. The details of the agreement were shocking and worse than anyone had imagined.

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: