The Hidden History of Shanghai’s Jewish Quarter – Atlas Obscura

The Fiedler family poses in front of their home on Tongshan Road. UNITED STATES HOLOCAUST MEMORIAL MUSEUM, COURTESY OF ERIC GOLDSTAUB

The Fiedler family poses in front of their home on Tongshan Road. UNITED STATES HOLOCAUST MEMORIAL MUSEUM, COURTESY OF ERIC GOLDSTAUB

It’s common knowledge that as Hitler’s bid to rid the world of Jews escalated, so did the world’s refusal to let them in. What’s not well known is that when those borders, ports, doors, windows, and boundaries began shutting Jews out, in part by refusing to issue them visas, Shanghai, though already swollen with people and poverty, was the only place on Earth willing to accept them with or without…

via The Hidden History of Shanghai’s Jewish Quarter – Atlas Obscura

“How can life go on?” Reflections on the Holocaust and its Aftermath | The York Historian

GERMANY, Berlin. Memorial to the Victims of the Holocaust.

Today, January 27th, is Holocaust Memorial Day. this article takes the opportunity to reflect on remembering the Holocaust, and what still needs to be done. AUTHOR: SOPHIE TURBUTT

Source: “How can life go on?” Reflections on the Holocaust and its Aftermath | The York Historian

Oskar Schindler’s Abandoned Factory Will Become A Holocaust Memorial | The Huffington Post

A dilapidated factory that Oskar Schindler once used to save more than 1,000 Jews from Nazi death camps during World War II will be restored into a Holocaust memorial, Czech officials have announced.

The story of Schindler and the Jews he saved was…

Source: Oskar Schindler’s Abandoned Factory Will Become A Holocaust Memorial | The Huffington Post

A fool on a hill…: The House by the Lake, by Thomas Harding

housebylakeThomas Harding’s grandparents were originally called Hirschowitz, and they were Jews who managed to escape from Hitler’s Germany just before escape pretty much ceased to be an option. They were relatively fortunate; most of their family got out too. When they came to England, Erich refused to…

Source: A fool on a hill…: The House by the Lake, by Thomas Harding

Al-Nakba – Al Jazeera English

“The Nakba did not begin in 1948. Its origins lie over two centuries ago….”

So begins this four-part series on the ‘nakba’, meaning the ‘catastrophe’, about the history of the Palestinian exodus that led to the first Arab-Israeli war in 1948, and the establishment of the state of Israel.This sweeping history starts back in 1799 with Napoleon’s attempted advance into Palestine to check British expansion and his appeal to the Jews

Source: Al-Nakba – Al Jazeera English

Escape Tunnel, Dug by Hand, Is Found at Holocaust Massacre Site – The New York Times

Jewish forced laborers dug a tunnel from this holding pit near Vilnius, Lithuania, into the surrounding forest. Credit Ezra Wolfinger for NOVA

A team of archaeologists and mapmakers say they have uncovered a forgotten tunnel that 80 Jews dug largely by hand as they tried to escape from a Nazi extermination site in Lithuania about 70 years ago.

The Lithuanian site, Ponar, holds mass burial pits and graves where up to 100,000 people were…

Source: Escape Tunnel, Dug by Hand, Is Found at Holocaust Massacre Site – The New York Times

The Heroism of Chiune Sugihara – Saved Countless Jews From Nazi Deathcamps

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Chiune Sugihara is not a name that immediately springs to mind when thinking of Japanese Second World War heroes, but his story is remarkable.

Born in January 1900 in the small Japanese town of Yaotsu, Chiune was an excellent scholar. He graduated from high school with top marks. He gained a place at the famous Waseda University in Tokyo where he studied English. He paid his way through university by taking several part-time jobs.

When he was 19, Sugihara discovered that the Japanese Foreign Ministry was looking for people who wanted to work in the overseas diplomatic service, and he applied. The entrance exam was…

Source: The Heroism of Chiune Sugihara – Saved Countless Jews From Nazi Deathcamps

Syrians to be housed in Dutch former village for Jews who fled Nazis | Jewish Telegraphic Agency

The Dutch owner of land that was once a village for Jews fleeing the Nazis offered to use it to house refugees from Syria and Iraq.

Joep Karel, the owner of the area in Slootdorp, 35 miles north of Amsterdam, made the offer earlier this month to the government’s Central Agency for the Reception of Asylum Seekers, The Noordhollands Dagblad daily reported last week.

The offer came amid a heated debate over the arrival this year of at least 26,000 Middle Eastern migrants. In Geldermalsen near Rotterdam, police fired warning shots during a riot by thousands of…

Source: Syrians to be housed in Dutch former village for Jews who fled Nazis | Jewish Telegraphic Agency

‘The Night of the Broken Glass’ | i-history

Originally posted on  i-history in 2014.

‘The Night of the Broken Glass’

On this day in 1938, a great evil spread across Germany and Austria. The German Nazi party launched a cancerous campaign of terror against the Jewish people, destroying homes and decimating businesses. This event, later dubbed ‘Kristallnacht’, bore witness to unfathomable acts of cruelty.

‘The Night of Broken Glass’ left approximately 100 Jews dead, 7,500 Jewish business damaged and countless schools, homes, synagogues and graveyards devastated. An estimated 30,000 Jewish men were arrested, many of whom were sent to concentration camps, only to be released on the promise of leaving Germany. The two day terror represented a histrionic intensification of the campaign generated by Adolf Hitler to purge Germany of its Jewish population. Today, one year after the 75th anniversary, we continue to reflect on the importance of…

via ‘The Night of the Broken Glass’ | i-history.

The Jewish Ghosts of Palermo

The Dangerously Truthful Diary of a Sicilian Housewife

There was a Jewish presence in Sicily for centuries, possibly from before the birth of Jesus. The Jews were the only outsiders who made their homes in Sicily and became part of her population without invading. They simply turned up, fitted in and made themselves indispensable.

IMG_20150416_110436 Possibly the most important Jewish street in Palermo, the Via dei Cartari was where all the Jewish scribes drew up any contract needed by the citizens of Palermo

The Jews were the literate and educated members of society and they also taught their children all the different languages they knew. This guaranteed them work as interpreters and scribes.

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In Palermo, they lived and set up their shops in the Jewish quarter of Palermo, where they also build very modest synagogues, and schools to pass on their knowledge to their children. They were the educated and wealthy elite. Their skills made them indispensable to successive…

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Sir Nicholas Winton honoured: Extraordinary story of the ‘British Schindler’ who rescued 669 children from Nazis in occupied Czechoslovakia – Home News – UK – The Independent

Sir Nicholas Winton was just 29 when he saved 669 children, most of them Jews, from the Nazis in occupied Czechoslovakia, in an extraordinary act of kindness and bravery that saw him nicknamed ‘The British Schindler’.

The story of Sir Nicholas’ remarkable rescue began shortly before Christmas 1938 when the former stockbroker from Hampstead, who was planning a holiday to Switzerland at the time, heard of the plight of child refugees in besieged Czechoslovakia.

Cancelling his holiday, he visited a friend in Prague to see the situation for himself.

While there he single-handedly masterminded the transportation of children from the Nazi-occupied country to Britain, saving them from the concentration camps, and in many cases certain death.

During 1939 he organised eight evacuations of the children on the Czech ‘Kindertransport’ train. He arranged foster homes, acquired the necessary travel permits for the children and persuaded…

via Sir Nicholas Winton honoured: Extraordinary story of the ‘British Schindler’ who rescued 669 children from Nazis in occupied Czechoslovakia – Home News – UK – The Independent