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October 9, 2015 / 26 Tishri, 5776
At a Glance

Posts Tagged ‘JEWS’

Aliyah Rises 13% Since Last Rosh HaShanah

Wednesday, September 9th, 2015

Immigration to Israel is up 13% compared with last year, with most of the rise from France and Ukraine among 97 countries whose citizens made Aliyah.

Approximately 3,600 Jews from North American have moved to Israel since last Rosh HaShanah, approximately the same number as the year before,

In the past 12 months, 29,500 Jews made Aliyah, compared with 26,000 in the Hebrew calendar year of 5774.

Most of this year’s immigrants came from the former Soviet Union – 14,100, compared with 10,800 last year – and from Europe, from where approximately 9,000 people came on Aliyah, 600 more than the previous year.

There was a modest increase in Aliyah from South America.

The two largest sources of Aliyah were France, with 7,350 immigrants compared with 6,700 in 5774, a 10% increase), and Ukraine, with 6,900 immigrants compared to 4,600 last year, a 50% increase.

The Jewish Agency and the Ministry of Aliyah and Immigrant Absorption have been running programs in both countries in order to encourage Aliyah and remove barriers to the immigrants’ integration in Israeli society. Aliyah from Russia also saw a significant 23% increase with the arrival of some 5,900 immigrants this year compared to 4,800 in 5774.

Also in Europe, some 690 immigrants arrived in Israel from the United Kingdom, a 13% increase when compared with the 612 who came last year. Some 400 arrived from Italy, a 30% increase, compared with 300 last year, and 290 came from Belgium, similar to last year’s figure.

Immigrants to Israel came from 97 countries across the world. One immigrant each came from Andorra, Angola, Namibia, Paraguay, the Philippines, and Slovakia.

Chairman of the Executive of The Jewish Agency for Israel Natan Sharansky said:

For the past few years, the majority of immigrants to Israel have been coming from free and democratic Western countries. These immigrants’ free choice to live in Israel, and their preference for Israel over other countries, is the true triumph of Zionism.

Minister of Aliyah and Immigrant Absorption Ze’ev Elkin estimated that Aliyah in the civilian calendar year of 2015 will be the highest in a decade, with 30,000-35,000 new immigrants expected.

Thousands of the new “olim” are young college graduates in engineering and technology, and more than 1,000 are doctors and other medical professionals.

The three most popular destinations in Israel were Tel Aviv-Yafo, which welcomed some 3,500 new immigrants, the coastal city of Netanya with 3,400, and Jerusalem, which some 3,000 new immigrants made their home in 5775.

European Leaders Reaffirm Commitment to ‘Fight Anti-Semitism’

Tuesday, September 8th, 2015

European leaders have reaffirmed their commitment to fight anti-Semitism, according to Rabbi Menachem Margolin, director of the European Jewish Association (EJA), who received greetings from the heads of most countries in the EU.

Margolin was the recipient of holiday greetings from Europe’s leadership ahead of the upcoming Jewish high holy days, particularly Rosh Hashana, the Jewish new year, which begins next Sunday night.

The continent’s leaders are seeking to “reinforce with Europe’s historic Jewish communities and reaffirm their commitment to fighting the wave of anti-Semitic acts that have blighted cities across the European Union,” Margolin said.

Messages of support and solidarity were led by France’s Francois Hollande, who departed from the secular protocol of the French Republic to send his new year wishes to European Jewry. The French president offered a firm commitment to fight “against all words and acts of an anti-Semitic nature, and to allow everyone to live together, without exception, with the same values of freedom, tolerance and community”.

French Premier Manuels Valls added his “readiness to fight against anti-Semitism, and all forms of racism and intolerance, and to tirelessly support European initiatives designed to defend the values which shape our democracies”.

Austrian President Heinz K. Fischer spoke out in support of “the common interest of Jews in Europe.” Fischer said he sought to renew Austria’s ties with the Jewish State by way of its commitment to “the safeguarding of Israel.”

He added that Austria remains committed to the protection of fundamental rights and freedoms in Europe and the world, and to the “safeguarding of minorities including the Jewish community in Austria, which has always strongly influenced our country’s culture,” he added.

Belgian Prime Minister Charles Michel also reaffirmed his “excellent relationship with the Jewish community in Belgium.”

Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte recalled his country’s endorsement of a joint statement on anti-Semitism at an informal meeting of the United Nations General Assembly last January.

“I share your concern about rising anti-Semitism in Europe,” he said in his message to European Jewry. “This scourge affects Jewish communities first, but in essence it is a threat to society as a whole,” he added.

EJA General Director, Rabbi Margolin thanked the European leaders for their wishes and commitments.

“Rabbis and community leaders across Europe report that in light of the growing anti-Semitism and nationalist atmosphere there has been a significant decline in the number of Jews who take part in community activities,” he said.

“However, Jewish communities are working hard to help Jews attend Rosh Hashanah services. Major security measures are being taken and we can report that there is a relative increase in the number of Jews who have expressed their intention to attend synagogues over Rosh Hashanah with their families, compared to last year. “

In Manchester, England alone, anti-Semitic incidents rose by nearly 80 percent in 12 months, according to a report issued by the Community Security Trust earlier this year.

A 17-year-old boy was beaten unconscious in an attack by three men who attacked him and three other Jews this past Saturday night. The boy remains hospitalized with a suspected brain bleed. The three other victims, ages 17, 18 and 20, were also verbally and physically assaulted but did not require admission to hospital.

New Shanghai Park Commemorates WW2 Jewish Refugee Community

Tuesday, September 8th, 2015

(JNi.media) A Jewish Memorial Park was inaugurated last week in the Fushouyuan cemetery at Shanghai’s Qingpu District, to mark the 70th anniversary of the War and the survival of the Jewish Refugees who fled to China from Eastern Europe. According to Shanghai Daily.

A memorial stone was unveiled in the park, inscribed with the name of Ho Fengshan, a Chinese diplomat in Vienna who risked his life to issue visas to more than 3,000 Jews. The stone is also inscribed with the names of 24 famous Jews “who had contributed to the development of Shanghai.”

Israeli Consul-General Arnon Perlman called for preserving the memories of Shanghai’s Jews for the benefit of future Chinese generations. “This is something that is very, very important to remember for all of us — whether it’s Jews, Israeli or Chinese — to remember the friendship between China and Israel and between Shanghai and Israel,” Perlman said, according to shanghaiist.com.

The park authorities have began an outreach effort to Jewish communities worldwide, to locate tombstones of other Jews who may be buried in Shanghai, as part of a plan to place all the local Jewish graves in the same park, “as an important memorial venue for both offspring of the deceased and the public to remember the history and the friendship between Chinese and Jewish people,” Shanghai Daily reported.

A Shanghai Jewish Memorial Cultural Fund is being planned to support infrastructure development, maintenance and expansion of the memorial park, as well as to launch non-governmental studies “to preserve historical memories shared by Chinese and Jewish people.”

British Gang Beats Jewish Teenager Unconscious

Monday, September 7th, 2015

Manchester, Britain police are searching for three men who verbally and physically assaulted four Jews, beating one of them unconscious at a tram [streetcar] station in North Manchester late Saturday night.

The Jewish men, ages 17, 18 and 20, were waiting for a tram when the attackers approached. The 17-year-old was beaten unconscious and is in the hospital after having suffered suspected bleeding to the brain,.

Police called the incident a hate crime, and they closed the tram station Monday morning in order to look for forensic evidence that might lead to the capture of the gang of attackers.

Community Security Trust vice president Marie van der Zyl said:

We were horrified to hear of the horrific anti-Semitic attack on four young men on a tram in Manchester. This was a brutal, unprovoked and cowardly assault and we hope and expect that the culprits will feel the full force of the law. We send our thoughts and prayers to those injured and to their families.

Anti-Semitic incidents in Manchester rose by nearly 80 percent in 12 months, according to a report issued by the Trust earlier this year.

Obama Cashes in on Separating Israel from American Jews’ Concerns

Monday, August 31st, 2015

Obama knows how to capitalize on the bulk of American Jews, who want Israel to be a nice Jewish boy that doesn’t make them feel uncomfortable

President Barack Obama declared that American Jews’ concerns are like those of Afro-Americans and other Americans, indicating that Israel is not one of those worries.

He unsurprisingly chose the left-wing and secular Forward to be the first Jewish newspaper ever to interview him.

Having embraced J Street and trying to manipulate public opinion into believing that it is speaks for mainstream American Jews, his choice of The Forward was natural. The newspaper for more than a century was known as “The Jewish Daily Forward.”
This year it became simply “The Forward.”

Its editor Jane Eisner told the Observer earlier this year that the newspaper has been trying “to understand who we are, who are readers are, who are readers ought to be….What we know is that most American Jews today are living a very pluralistic life—there’s a lot of intermarriage and interfaith relationships.”

The same Jane Eisner on Friday interviewed President Obama, who also likes to see American Jews as any other hyphenated ethnic community that views their old homeland as a fond memory that it relives, in the case of American Jews, by eating gefilte fish.

The president knows, as Eisner indicated to the Observer, that American Jews are a vanishing through an assimilation rate approaching 70 percent and that the number of Jews in the United States rises only by changing the definition of a Jew to embrace pluralism, the melting pot that is supposed to erase any outward indication that belies the belief in Mom, Flag and Apple Pie.

He knows that the hard-core pro-Israel Jews, those who view Judea and Samaria as a part of Israel, Jerusalem as the capital, and a strong Israel good for the security United States, are a minority.

Deep down in the interview with Eisner, President Obama said:

American Jews, like African-Americans or any other cohort of Americans, have a wide range of concerns. They care about student loans; they care about housing; they care about poverty; they care about women’s health issues. And so it’s not as if the American Jewish community makes decisions solely on the basis of a single issue

The “single issue,” of course, is Israel. He does not, nor do most American Jews, think too much about Israel, especially when it comes to the nuclear agreement with Iran, which was the focus of his comments to the Forward.

He explained:

I do get disturbed sometimes when I hear folks suggesting that those who oppose the deal are pro-Israel. We’re all pro-Israel. The issue is, how do we solve this very particular problem of making sure Iran doesn’t have a nuclear weapon….

I think we have to steer away from incendiary language that suggests that either those who are in favor of the deal are appeasing Iran or, conversely, that those who are opposed to the deal are not thinking about America’s interest.

If anyone has used incendiary language, it is President Obama, who has implied, as Eisner reported that she told him, “that even some of his supporters say that he has contributed to the incendiary language by implying that opponents of the deal are ‘warmongers.'”

She said that was the only time in the interview “that I saw him bristle and his back stiffen.” He replied:

What I said is that if we reject the deal, the logical conclusion is that if we want to prevent Iran from getting a nuclear weapon, military strikes will be the last option remaining at some point. It may not be under my administration; it might be under the next one. And that is something that has to be taken into account.

She did not respond, “What about more sanctions instead of war?

WWII-Era Jewish Café Reopens in Shanghai

Friday, August 28th, 2015

A café that was a popular spot for Jewish refugees in Shanghai during World War II has been rebuilt and reopened in the city’s Hongkou district.

The Zum Weissen Rossi’l café, better known as the White Horse Café, first opened in 1939. On hand for the reopening were city and district government officials, the consulate general of Israel in Shanghai and family members of the original owners.

“The feeling is excellent, like going back home,” said 74-year-old Ron Klinger, one of the family members, Xinhua reported.

“Our families are very grateful to the city and district government for restoring the cafe,” Klinger said.

Klinger’s grandparents, who fled to Shanghai from Vienna in 1939, ran the café until 1949, when they relocated to Australia. Klinger’s parents also met at the café and got married in February 1941. He was born the same year.

It is estimated that around 23,000 European Jews fled to Shanghai during World War II to escape Nazi persecution, joining already established Chinese Jewish communities from Baghdad and Russia. The Jewish refugees were restricted to a small area that became known as the “Shanghai Ghetto” by the Japanese, who had occupied the city in 1937. Nearly all of Shanghai’s Jewish community left the city following WWII and the Chinese Communist revolution in 1949.

Jews Return to City of David Complex after 77 Years

Thursday, August 27th, 2015

Jewish families and yeshiva students moved into a large complex in the old Yemenite community in the Silwan Valley in the pre-dawn hours Thursday morning, reclining another Jewish-owned property that was abandoned when the British expelled Jews in the 1930s.

The move, backed by the court that ordered eviction notices to Arab squatters, was made during the middle of the night in order not provoke friction with Arab neighbors.

The building, near the City of David across the street from the Western Wall plaza and located near other structures that have been bought by Jews in the old Yemenite Village, now is called Beit Rachel. It is a few minutes by foot from the recently redeemed sections of the original Yemenite Beit Knesset- Ohel Shlomo-Heichal Yonatan, named for Jonathan Pollard.

The original synagogue is one of the few buildings that remains in its entirety. It was one of the first buildings established in the Village by Yemenite Jews in 1885, who arrived in Jerusalem three years earlier before nay Arabs were living in the Silwan neighborhood.

Following Arab pogroms of 1936-37, the synagogue was defiled, desecrated and many holy books were burnt despite British promises to protect the holy Jewish site.

Arabs squatted in the old synagogue and in other buildings, including privately owned Yemenite homes.

In August 1938, the British Authorities removed the last remaining 35-40 Yemenite Jewish families who had managed to survive many years of attacks by Arabs in riots and pogroms.

The British High Commissioner on behalf of the British Government gave written assurances that the Jews would be able to return “shortly” to their homes but by the early 1940s,  Arabs had literally taken apart buildings and had stolen floor tiles, roof tiles, taps, building stones, window and door frames.





Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/jews-return-to-city-of-david-complex-after-77-years/2015/08/27/

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