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Lithuania’s Synagogues Are Falling Into Ruin Due to Lack of Funding

  AFP reports that Lithania’s wooden synagogues are falling into ruin due to a lack of funding and support. These rundown buildings are the remaining vestiges of the former Jewish presence that was wiped out in the Holocaust. Between 1941- 1944, the Nazis murdered approximately 90 percent of Lithuania’s 200,000 Jews. “Jews owned around 20 shops […]

In the Sewers of Lvov

Friends: In preparation for Passover and its powerful theme of “mei avdut l’cherut” — from slavery to freedom — I watched a DVD of the 2011 film “In Darkness.” Based on the non-fiction book, “In the Sewers of Lvov”, the film chronicles the incredible survival of a group of Jews for 14 months underneath Lvov’s […]

Numerous Anti-Semitic Incidents Have Been Reported Throughout Eastern Europe in Recent Days

(JTA) — A string of anti-Semitic events and incidents have been recorded in Ukraine, Poland and Hungary in recent days. A swastika and neo-Nazi symbols was spray-painted last week on a monument in Mykolaiv, near Odessa, to the late Lubavitcher rebbe, Menachem Mendel Schneerson. In Kiev, anti-Semitic flyers on Monday were placed on a synagogue […]

Legionnaires Day in Latvia Draws Protesters

On Saturday, March 16th, over 1000 Latvians honored Nazi-allied World War II soldiers. Violence almost erupted between the Latvian participants and the ethnic Russians, who are a minority in the country. The police used force, dragging some participants away and detaining four, to prevent any tumult. Read the AP article here. March 16th is considered […]

Bishop Hopes to Build a Jewish Cultural Center in Armenia, Research 13th Century Jewish Roots

Public Radio of Armenia– Rebecca Miller, a Peace Corps volunteer in Armenia, was skeptical when Bishop Abraham Mkrtchyan approached her about starting a Jewish culture center alongside a medieval Jewish cemetery in the village of Yeghegis. “I had… noted that there was not much in the way of diversity in the area and couldn’t imagine […]

Bar Mitzvah Celebrated 70 Years Later in Ukrainian Town

From Israel National News– By David Lev For the first time since before World War II, the small Jewish community in the Ukrainian town of Netishin held prayer services – and celebrated the Bar-Mitzvah of the grandson of the community’s last rabbi, 70 years after it had been scheduled to take place. The religious revival […]

Remembering the Refusenik Movement

By Jessica Ravitz, CNN (CNN) – Driven by desperation, Marina and Lev Furman stepped out of their home in Leningrad and took a 20-minute walk into uncertainty. Trailed by KGB agents, they bundled up and set out in the weak winter light for Palace Square, site of the 1917 Bolshevik Revolution. They brought signs demanding freedom. And […]

Mila Kunis Targeted by Anti-Semitic Ukrainian Lawmaker

Ukrainian MP Igor Miroshnichenko stirred controversy last month by posting an anti-Semitic comment on Facebook regarding Ukrainian-born American actress Mila Kunis. Miroshnichenko stated, “She is not Ukrainian, she is a Jewess by birth,” using the term “zhydovka” which roughly translates to “dirty Jewess,” instead of the accepted word “ievreïska.” He added, “She is proud of this and […]

Limmud FSU Conference Fosters Jewish Culture

Jerusalem Post– By Daniel K. Eisenbud The Limmud FSU Conference in the western Ukrainian city of Uzhgorod may very well be the intellectual Jewish Woodstock of the former Soviet Union. Attracting over 600 Jews from all walks of life across the country, as well as from surrounding nations, it is a four-day meeting of the […]