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24 Sivan 5779

Issue No.1112


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Williamson whitewash sparks fury Labour MP let back into party after claiming it’s ‘too apologetic’ over antisemitism


“This decision beggars belief. The lack of transparency and clarity around the process of why Mr Williamson has had his suspension lifted lends credence as to why the Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC) is investigating whether the party discriminates against Jewish people,” he added. Board of Deputies vice president Amanda Bowman condemned the announcement as an “utter disgrace” and “yet more damning evidence for the EHRC’s inquiry into antisemitism in the Labour Party”. Labour MP Dame Margaret Hodge told Jewish News: “This decision is the complete opposite of a zero-tolerance approach to antisemitism. Letting Chris Williamson back into Labour shows the party complaints process is a complete sham. “He has shown a disturbing ‘pattern of behaviour’ when it comes to antisemitism, and yet he has been readmitted simply to garner a vote. The party leadership should all be ashamed of themselves.” The Jewish Labour Movement said it “shows the moral turpitude of the party.” Continued on page 2

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Labour MP Chris Williamson has been let back into the party despite insisting it’s “too apologetic” over antisemitism, sparking shock and anger across the Jewish community, writes Mathilde Frot. Jewish News understands that a National Executive Committee panel did find the controversial MP for Derby North [pictured] in breach of party rules. However, the panel decided not to refer Williamson to the National Constitution Committee (NCC), Labour’s highest disciplinary panel, instead warning him that if he repeats such conduct in future, he is likely to face further and more severe sanctions. Leicester East MP Keith Vaz is believed to have pushed for the rejection of party recommendation to refer Williamson’s case to the NCC. Yesterday’s decision prompted immediate criticism from the community, with Simon Johnson, of the Jewish Leadership Council, claiming Williamson has shown no remorse and will offend again.

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Jewish News 27 June 2019

News / Gove speech / Brown plea / MP unapologetic

‘I stand with Israel,’ says Gove Michael Gove has said antisemitism “now finds a home in British politics” in reference to the Labour Party, and the test of a nation’s civility lies in its approach to Jews, writes Stephen Oryszczuk.

The Environment, Food and Rural Affairs Secretary, made the comments at a UK-Israel trade event in central London on Tuesday, sponsored by Teddy Sagi’s LabTech.







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Gove, who narrowly failed to make the final cut in last week’s Conservative leadership selection process, said antisemitism was being “nurtured and encouraged by British politicians… it is one of the struggles of our time”. Anti-Zionism and antisemitism were one and the same, he argued: “The form antisemitism takes now is... an attempt to undermine and delegitimise Israel... The idea that the Jewish people should not have their own home, a right to selfdetermination, that is antisemitism pure and simple.” He added: “The test of how civilised a country is, throughout history, does it stand with the Jewish people? Do Jewish citizens feel that they have a friend and are free in that country? “If you look back to medieval times, Spain’s antisemitism [during the Inquisition] was a sign that that country was going backwards. In the 19th century, Vienna’s antisemitism was a sign that that country was going backwards.

Michael Gove with LabTech’s Robert Akkerman and the PR Office’s Shimon Cohen

Even now in Russia, antisemitism there is a sign of [President Vladimir] Putin’s erosion of freedom.” He continued: “Throughout history, the country that is friendliest towards, and most supportive of its Jewish neighbours and friends, is a beacon. In the 17th and 18th centuries, it was the Netherlands. In the

19th century and the beginning of the 20th, it was the UK. Now the UK and America stand with Israel, showing we are truly countries that believe in liberty. “It is a pleasure to stand with the Jewish people. It is a duty to stand with Israel.” The MP, who received a long ovation for his 15-minute

speech, made without notes, addressed the evening gathering hours after announcing a new law forcing food companies to list all ingredients in pre-packed food, under the new ‘Natasha’s law’ proposals, named after a girl who died in 2016 from an allergic reaction to ingredients in a Pret A Manger sandwich.

Fury at Williamson let-off “too apologetic” over antisemitism. A Labour spokesperson said: “We take all complaints extremely seriously, which are investigated in line with our rules and procedures. We can’t comment on individual cases.”

Continued from page 1 “How dare the Labour Party deny it is institutionally racist against Jews when it decides to take no action against Chris Williamson? “It seems the decision to let him off is because he represents a marginal seat and there might be a snap election. It’s good to know that a party of anti-racists, led by an avowed anti-racist decides its OK to ignore anti-Jewish racism if there’s a vote to be won.” When asked whether the decision to allow Williamson back into Labour would give rise to a new push for disaffiliation, JLM National Chair Mike Katz said the decision

Intervention: Keith Vaz

would “exacerbate people’s concerns that the party doesn’t give a damn about its Jewish members and the community, or being investigated in an unprecedented way by the equalities watchdog”. Labour launched an investigation into Williamson’s “pattern of behaviour” in February after video emerged of him telling activists Labour been

• Gordon Brown this week called for tougher laws on antisemitism, saying “intolerance has become a feature of our country”. The former prime minister proposed to root out Jew-hate and Islamophobia through education in schools and new legislation. “We have to fight the intolerance that is now a feature of our country, particularly of the right but not exclusively the right,” he said.  JN commment, p18

MSP NOT SORRY OVER FALSE CLAIM A Labour MSP has refused to apologise after falsely claiming an IDF officer was

McNeill: No apology

last week acquitted over killing a Palestinian teenager. Pauline McNeill shared a Guardian article from 2005, which reported that the officer, Captain B, was cleared of all charges after the death of 13-year-old Iman al-Hams in Gaza, who was killed by IDF gunfire. Captain R had been accused of illegal use of his weapon, conduct unbe-

coming of an officer and perverting the course of justice. McNeill shared the article, falsely claiming in a later tweet, which was shared thousands of times, that Captain R had been acquitted on Saturday, when the verdict was handed down 14 years-ago. After online users pointed out the story dated to 2005, she claimed the IDF continued to act with impunity.

27 June 2019 Jewish News


Event scrapped / Kosher concerns / News NEWS IN BRIEF

PLIGHT OF ARAB JEWS DISCUSSED BY MPS MPs have held Parliament’s first discussion on the plight of Jews throughout the Arab world in the immediate aftermath of the formation of the state of Israel. The Westminster Hall debate, held last Wednesday, focused on the way in which hundreds of thousands of Jews living in the Middle East and North Africa were forced to leave their home for Israel in and after 1948. Chipping Barnet MP Theresa Villiers said it amounted to “ethnic cleansing”.

LUNAR MISSION WILL NOT BE REPEATED The Israeli company that attempted to put an unmanned craft on the moon says it will not try a second moonshot. SpaceIL said its lunar mission in April has been widely hailed as “an exceptional success”, despite crash landing on the moon. It says “an attempt to repeat a trip is not enough of a challenge” and will instead search for a different mission. The SpaceIL Beresheet spacecraft attempted to be the first privately funded lunar mission, but failed to make a controlled landing on the lunar surface.

MP cancels Houthi event An event in Parliament was cancelled this week following pressure, with an activist accused of having links to an “antisemitic” Houthi group. Labour MP Lloyd RussellMoyle had agreed to host Ahmed Alshami at a Tuesday meeting of the Stop the War Coalition in Westminster. However, Labour’s parliamentary office confirmed yesterday that the event was scrapped on Monday. Alshami was billed as having participated with the Houthi movement – whose slogan says “death to Israel, curse the Jews” – in UN peace talks. The Brighton Kemptown

Armed Houthis in Yemen display their weapons

MP initially defended the invitation, but later issued a statement calling for the removal of the speaker.

He said he believes “it is necessary for members of those committees to have meetings with different par-

ties to conflicts, even when we vehemently disagree with their views to bring about peace”. However, he later said: “...I agreed to host the Stop the War briefing around Yemen. Stop the War arranged the speaker but on further investigation of [him] it has become clear it would be inappropriate to give [him] a public platform in a public meeting. “I therefore have informed Stop the War they should remove this speaker from the event or it will be cancelled.” Russell-Moyle faced criticism from Labour colleague Dame Margaret Hodge, who has been a prominent voice against antisemitism in the

party and condemned the invitation, as did Jewish groups. Hodge told Jewish News: “The antisemitic language and actions of the Houthi group, who will be represented at this event, are sickening. “Inviting an organisation whose slogan states ‘death to Israel, curse the Jews’ to Parliament will do nothing to reassure the Jewish community that Labour takes the fight against antisemitism seriously. The UK government backs the Saudi-led coalition fighting the Houthi rebels, but last week lost a court case over the sale of arms to Saudi Arabia. Judges said licences should be reviewed.

Kosher boss reassures shoppers after crisis Following reports that two delis under the same ownership in Manchester and Liverpool sold treif products, the Kosher London Beth Din has sought to reassure Jewish News readers over its own stringent practices. Gough’s Deli in Manchester

and Roseman’s Delicatessen in Liverpool, owned by Robert Kaye, lost their kashrut licences from the Manchester Beth Din. Rabbi Jeremy Conway wrote in a letter to Jewish News about the “need for a professional system of inspection and super-

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vision” of kosher products. The letter, published in full in this week’s issue, offers crucial advice to consumers on how to ensure kosher products are what they claim to be. “Keeping kosher in smaller communities can be chal-

lenging, but KLBD will do everything it can to support kosher consumers and facilitate kashrut observance across the country,” he added. Married father-of-two Kaye was found dead after the licences were revoked.

Roseman’s Delicatessen


Jewish News 27 June 2019

Special Report / The race for Downing Street

Which way will the C Jeremy Hunt has promised Boris Johnson ‘the fight of his life’ as they battle to goes out to party members, political consultant Jodie Cohen asks what Johnson After an initial 13 candidates, multiple leadership debates, hustings, behindthe-scenes negotiations, schoolboy dirty tricks and five rounds of voting, we’re finally down to the final two candidates for leader of the Conservative Party. So what really qualifies the candidates and what would their impact be on issues of concern to the Jewish community?


Boris Johnson MP was first elected to Parliament to represent the constituents of Henley in 2001. In 2008, he gave up this seat to stand as Mayor of London, a position he held until returning to Parliament in 2015, this time as the MP for Uxbridge and South Ruislip. Quick promotion followed, and he served as Foreign Secretary until 2018, when he resigned in protest at Theresa May’s handling of Brexit. J o h n son’s earliest recorded ambition was to be ‘world king’. Despite being considered a ‘Marmite’ candidate, he surged ahead of his opponents at every round of voting, and receiving the backing of 160 – more than half – of MPs in the final ballot.

A recent ComRes poll suggested that Johnson heading the Conservatives could lead to a landslide victory at the next General Election. However, Johnson’s lead has slipped since revelations of a police call to his house following an argument with his girlfriend, Carrie Symonds. Meanwhile, Jeremy Hunt MP has been the Member of Parliament for South West Surrey since 2005. Immediately appointed a shadow minister and then a member of the shadow cabinet, he has consistently been in the cabinet since the Conservatives returned to government. He has worked across different departments, most recently as secretary of state for health and social care, and currently as foreign secretary. Jeremy Hunt received 77 votes in the final ballot of MPs, two more than his nearest opponent, Michael Gove. Hunt has been called ‘Theresa May in trousers’, and unlike Johnson, he says the current departure date of 31 October is not a hard deadline. That’s why Johnson was keen to face him in the final two, as he believes he contrasts strongly with Hunt, viewed by some as the ‘continuity candidate’.


Simon Johnson, chief executive of the Jewish Leadership Council, said: “Both candidates have shown great support and friendship to the Jewish community. They have

both acknowledged how important the Jewish community is to the life of this country. They have taken a strong position on all the issues of importance to us, including speaking up vocally against antisemitism, and in support of religious freedom and the protection of rights.” Johnson and Hunt have a solid record of defending the memory of the Holocaust and speaking out against antisemitism. At a Conservative Friends of Israel reception in January, Foreign Secretary Hunt emphasised that the UK “will always stand shoulder to shoulder with Israel in stamping out antisemitism”. He talked about the privilege he had of unveiling a statue of British Holocaust hero Frank Foley, stating that “if we don’t learn lessons, history will judge us very poorly indeed”. As Mayor of London, Johnson signed the American Jewish Committee’s antisemitism pledge. In the week of Holocaust Memorial Day 2018, he wrote: “Even today, the truth about the Holocaust is distorted and sometimes denied. The most grotesque comparisons are drawn between Zionism and Nazism, including by public figures who should know better.” And in March last year, when the community held its first public protest against antisemitism in the Labour party, Johnson stated in Parliament that it is vital

for everybody in this House to send out a very clear message that antisemitism anywhere is intolerable”. In the BBC leadership debate, Hunt talked about his three children, who are half-Chinese, and emphasised the need for Britain to remain “one of the most open, tolerant countries on the planet”. Meanwhile, Johnson has described himself as a “one-man melting pot” – with a combination of Jews, Muslims, and Christians as greatgrandparents. However, he has come under criticism for comments regarding burqas, which have been condemned by leading rabbis and figures in the Jewish as well as wider community. Also in the BBC’s leadership debate, both candidates agreed to an external inquiry into Islamophobia in the party.


In March, Foreign Secretary Hunt ‘saluted’ the German Bundestag for passing a law that equates the boycott, divestment and sanctions (BDS) movement with antisemitism. Hunt tweeted: “Boycotting Israel – the world’s only Jewish state – is antisemitic.” Last month, when Gaza fired more than 700 rockets at Israel, he tweeted that his thoughts were “with the families of innocent civilians killed and affected by Hamas’ indiscriminate and abhorrent rocket attacks.” Also in March, Hunt announced that Britain will oppose every Item 7 resolution on the UN Human Rights Council (UNHRC) agenda, which singles out Israel for debate.

Jeremy Hunt and Boris Johnson are vying for the leadership of the Conservative Party

27 June 2019 Jewish News


The race for Downing Street / Special Report

Conservatives turn? become the next Tory leader and prime minister. As the vote or Hunt as leader of the country means for the Jewish community Johnson describes himself as an exkibbutznik, who spent most of his time doing the washing up. At the centenary celebrations of the Balfour Declaration, he said: “I recognise the magic, the genius, and miracle of Israel.” He has talked about the creation of Israel as being one of the greatest political triumphs of the 20th century, describing it as “a democracy, a liberal society, a beacon of hope, which shares the values in which I passionately believe”. As foreign secretary, Johnson condemned the UN Human Rights Council (UNHRC) for its disproportionate focus on Israel, which he said was “damaging to the cause of peace”. And as mayor, he enhanced trade between Britain and Israel and dismissed calls for boycotts. However, during the Gaza war, Johnson described Israel’s response as “disproportionate, ugly and tragic”. In his book about Churchill, he writes about “the shameful way Israelis have treated Palestinians”, as well as the “generally woeful quality of Palestinian leadership”. His friend of 30 years, journalist Tom Gross,

t. Es

DURING THE GAZA CONFLICT OF 2014, BORIS DESCRIBED ISRAEL’S ACTIONS AS ‘UGLY AND TRAGIC’ says that on occasion Johnson has “waxed and waned towards Israel”. However, he argues Johnson stood up for the Jewish state at the Oxford Union when he was a student, which was not always a popular thing to do, and as editor of The Spectator he ran articles emphasising Israeli victims as well as Palestinian. Commenting on the final two candidates, Lord Polak, honorary president of Conservative Friends of Israel, said “the importance of building good and trusting relationships cannot be overstated, but a short examination of some actions by the candidates should give


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some comfort. Boris Johnson was responsible for ensuring that the first Royal visit to Israel took place, and Jeremy Hunt made it possible for the UK to finally proscribe Hezbollah in full”. It will be revealing to see how a Prime Minister Johnson or Hunt differs from Foreign Secretary Johnson and Hunt. Holding the reigns and freer from the shackles of the Foreign Office, who will they appoint as their Foreign Secretary? And how will they respond to the forthcoming US Peace Plan, as well as relations with Iran?


While community relations and relations with other countries will be of the utmost importance to the next prime minister, first on his mind will be the need to unite the party and country, and deliver Brexit. The new prime minister will also need to contend (or work) with Nigel Farage and his Brexit Party. And, following Brexit, the biggest test will be to face Jeremy Corbyn at the next election.

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Jewish News 27 June 2019

News / Lords debate / Sheridan promoted / JVL criticised / Corbyn concern

Tonge ‘sick of filthy abuse’ Baroness Tonge has told peers during a House of Lords debate on antisemitism that she was “saddened” not to be discussing “prejudice generally”. The longstanding Israel critic and former Lib Dem MP also defended herself against the charge of being antisemitic, saying she was “sick” of the accusations and “filthy abuse” she received online. Tonge opened her address by saying she felt like “Daniel in the lion’s den… I hope, like him, I will be spared”. She added: “I wish you to know I am not antisemitic. I have never ever been antisemitic and I never will be. I am anti-injustice.” She acknowledged a rise in antisemitism over the past three years,

but noted “a much greater rise in Islamophobic incidents over the same period, and that they are more frequent and severe… I am therefore saddened we cannot discuss the rise in prejudice generally”. Tonge said antisemitic attacks “surged” during and after Israeli military action in Gaza in 2014, adding: “Some people who commit antisemitic acts do not distinguish between ordinary Jewish people… and the Zionist Israeli government of what is now called the Jewish state of Israel. It is too difficult a distinction for many to make.” Lord Sacks, the former Chief Rabbi, said antisemitism “has returned exactly as it did in the 19th century… Today there is

hardly a country in the world, certainly in Europe, where Jews feel safe”. Senior Labour peer Lord Harris described his party’s “abject failure” to deal with antisemitism, saying it was “shocking” and “humiliating” to find Labour subject to formal investigation by the Equality and Human Rights Commission. Echoing many other peers, he blamed a “failure of leadership” for the party’s inability to root out antisemitism more speedily and said Labour needed “cleansing” of it. However Labour’s Lord Campbell-Savours rejected accusations that his party was institutionally racist or that Jeremy Corbyn was prejudiced. “People simply don’t

understand what Corbyn is all about,” he said. “He is obsessed with human rights and sometimes gets the nuances completely wrong.” Tonge added that Corbyn “feels passionately about human rights and, like me, does not always express it in the right sort of way, but nevertheless he cares deeply”. Former minister Baroness Altmann said the far-left had “taken over mainstream political leadership with its own version of anti-Jewish rhetoric; the archcapitalists, bankers, enemies of the working class,” adding: “These antisemitic sentiments are not about the situation in Israel. They predate the Jewish state.”

Tonge lashing: Baroness during debate

JEWISH GROUPS WRITE TO LABOUR OVER COUNCILLOR PROMOTION Jewish groups have called for an “immediate reversal” on the promotion of a councillor probed for saying he had lost “respect and empathy” for British Jews over the antisemitism crisis. Jim Sheridan (pictured), was suspended for five months over comments made online about the community, was appointed last week as deputy leader of

Renfrewshire Labour. The letter, signed by the Board of Deputies, Jewish Leadership Council and Community Security Trust, was sent to Labour General Secretary Jennie Formby on Monday. Sheridan was suspended and subsequently cleared after the party received a complaint over a Facebook

post stating his loss of “respect and empathy” for the community over the antisemitism row. The letter claims the move to appoint Sheridan to his new post “demonstrates the Labour Party’s failure regarding antisemitism”. “In light of his Facebook posting, we consider it bad enough that Mr Sheridan was readmitted to the Labour Party – particularly after he defended his actions – but his subsequent quick promotion makes the matter even more serious,” the letter states.

A party spokesperson said at the time it could not comment on individual cases but that it fully investigates all complaints of antisemitism.

Lansman: ‘JVL part of problem’

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The Jewish founder of a grassroots group credited with electing Jeremy Corbyn as Labour leader has said the group most supportive of Corbyn is “not part of the Jewish community”. Jon Lansman, who founded Momentum, was criticising Jewish Voice for Labour (JVL), a group set up in 2017 with a remit in part to “offer an alternative to the Jewish Labour Movement’s pro-Israel agenda”. Lansman’s criticism focused on JVL’s reaction to Labour’s

antisemitism crisis and included the accusation that JVL was “part of the problem”, not part of the solution. Speaking to Jewish News, Lansman said: “I did argue that JVL, by denying or diminishing the problem of antisemitism within the Labour Party, have been part of the problem and not part of the solution. “In addition, I argued that by focusing on ‘Zionism’ rather than the occupation and discrimination against Arab citizens of Israel, they have made it harder to win support.”

JVL offers full membership only to Jews who are members of the Labour Party, and has drawn attention to the Jewish Labour Movement’s policy of offering full membership to non-Jews who are not members of the Labour Party and who do not live in the UK. A statement on the JVL website said in response: “Many Jewish Labour Party members, working hard for the election of a Labour government, have felt undermined by these comments.”

Top rabbi: Corbyn a ‘false messiah’

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Senior Reform Rabbi Laura Janner-Klausner has described Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn as a “false messiah” and urged him to apologise over the antisemitism row. Janner-Klausner, a lifelong Labour supporter and the daughter of late Labour peer

Rabbi Laura and Corbyn

Greville Janner, spoke to the Evening Standard (ES) newspaper ahead of her address at the Genesis Prize award ceremony. “Jeremy Corbyn is a false messiah,” she said. “Having been at Labour Party conference, I think there is a cult around him whereby he is seen as all the answers to all the problems.” She added: “I would want him to say ‘I understand that as leader of the party I’m responsible for what has happened and these are the correct steps I will take to start to respond to

it’. That is what an apology is.” A Labour spokesperson told the ES: “This is false and offensive. Jeremy Corbyn and the Labour Party are fully committed to the support, defence and celebration of the Jewish community and implacably opposed to antisemitism.... “Antisemitism complaints received over a period of 10 months related to about 0.1 percent of our membership, but one antisemite in our party is one too many. We are determined to tackle antisemitism and root it out of our Party.”

27 June 2019 Jewish News


Game on! / News

Chelsea FC women to play Israeli team Chelsea FC women will fly to Tel Aviv this summer to face the Israeli women’s team in a pre-season friendly, writes Adam Decker. The match, sponsored by Chelsea FC owner Roman Abramovich and the Israeli FA, will be held on 20 August at Ha-Moshava Stadium. Coming on the heels of the FIFA Women’s World Cup in France, it is aimed at achieving more visibility for the women’s game while preparing Chelsea for the Super League season. Chelsea FC Chairman Bruce Buck said: “We are delighted to be taking the team to Israel this summer to play the women’s national team. “As well as a challenging part of our preseason, this match will help raise the profile of women’s football.” He said Abramovich was “passionate about supporting the team and promoting the sport”, adding: “We hope our visit to Israel will not only be a special moment for our Israeli fans and our players, but also help grow the game in the country.” Rotem Kamer, general secretary of the Israel Football Association, added: “The arrival of

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Chelsea women play in Tel Aviv in August. Left: Israel captain Karin Sendel

Chelsea women for a friendly match in Israel is an excellent opportunity to place the focus on female football, certainly when such a leading team pays a visit. “The contribution of Chelsea, led by owner Roman Abramovich, to the fight against antisemitism and the promotion of equality and tolerance is well known and we see the match as a combined effort in achieving important social goals.” While in Israel, the Chelsea Foundation will be working with charities promoting women’s sports and supporting girls’ grassroots football.

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Jewish News 27 June 2019

News / App appeal

Call to ban Muslim Brotherhood-linked app Calls were made this week for Apple to remove an app on its platform created by a group with links to the Muslim Brotherhood, over concerns it can be used to foster hate, writes Mathilde Frot. The Euro Fatwa app, as first reported by UAE newspaper The National, is currently available as a free download on the App Store and Google Play. Google reportedly banned the app in May, according to multiple media reports, but it is now accessible on its platform. It is available in Arabic, Spanish and English and claims to help the community “fulfil their duties as Muslim citizens.” The app was created by the European Council for Fatwa and Research, a Muslim rulemaking body set up by clerics with ties to Egypt’s Muslim Brotherhood movement. Among them, Yusuf al-Qaradawi, 92, who founded the organisation, is

Muslim Brotherhood members behind bars in Cairo. Inset below: The app’s logo

The Euro Fatwa mobile app home screen menu

banned from entering Britain, France and the US owing to his extremist views. He is considered to be one of the spiritual leaders of the Muslim Brotherhood. Qaradawi’s statements have elicited wide condemnations in the past, including his support for suicide bombers to attack Israelis and the claim the murder of six million Jews

promoted antisemitic conspiracy theories. Ghanem Nuseibeh, chair of Muslims Against Antisemitism, this week called for the app to be removed from platforms, saying: “The Muslim Brotherhood ... [has] been responsible for spreading more antisemitism than any other group among Muslim communities..” Fiyaz Mughal, director and founder of Faith Matters,

by Nazi Germany was “divine punishment”. The Muslim Brotherhood, which has a membership of nearly one million people, claims it is a non-violent organisation and refutes allegations of extremism. However, the Home Office considers membership of the movement as a possible indicator of extremism and continues to keep the Muslim Brotherhood’s activities under

review following a consultation in 2015, which found aspects of its ideology and tactics as “contrary to our fundamental values”. In April, US President Donald Trump announced his administration was working to designate the Muslim Brotherhood a terrorist organisation. Meanwhile, according to the Anti-Defamation League, leading figures in the Muslim Brotherhood have publicly

echoed criticism, saying the app was a “disaster waiting to happen”. He added: “The seeds of hate are sewn in unchallenged information.” Apple said: “Our guidelines require apps don’t contain upsetting or offensive content, We reviewed the app and did not find guideline violations.” Google and The European Council for Fatwa and Research have both been contacted for comment.





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27 June 2019 Jewish News



Jewish News 27 June 2019

News / Airport alert / Royal affair NEWS IN BRIEF

UK & ISRAELI JETS IN JOINT DRILLS Britain’s F-35 stealth fighter jets have been flown alongside Israeli and US aircraft as part of a routine training exercise, the military said. The warplanes were deployed yesterday as part of a joint drill with Israeli and US forces to develop the capabilities of the aircraft. Some estimates have put the cost of each jet at as much as £150 million. The IDF shared a photo from the drill, adding: “United by common threats, strengthened by common goals.”

MARGARET HODGE AT LIBERAL EVENT Around 180 Progressive Jews came together to discuss care, community and social justice at Liberal Judaism’s Day of Celebration. The event had the theme of ‘If I am only for myself’. Held at the Liberal Jewish Synagogue, in St John’s Wood – and attended by members of 27 communities – the keynote event was a discussion between the Labour MP Dame Margaret Hodge and Jean Gaffin, OBE, a distinguished figure in British healthcare.

Brits trigger bomb alert at Ben Gurion A group of 18 British men were removed from a Heathrow-bound flight at Israel’s Ben Gurion Airport on Sunday night after one “joked” about having a bomb in his luggage. The young men, believed to be part of a stag party, were returned to the terminal after an airport security team were alerted to the possibility of a bomb on board after comments from one of the men. Among the passengers was the senior Reform Rabbi Laura JannerKlausner, who spoke to Jewish News about the incident on British Airways flight BA164. “First there was a child with measles who had to be removed, that took some time,” she said. “Then there was a group of men in their 20s and 30s who started playing up. They were really drunk. I assume it was a stag [do]. “One was asked about his baggage by a crew member and he said something like ‘what, do you think I’ve got a bomb in there or something?’, at which the airport was alerted and lines of police

The men were taken off the plane at Ben Gurion Airport

came pouring on board to remove the group.” Janner-Klausner added: “As the captain quite rightly said, in the Middle East there are some things you just don’t joke about. Both captain and crew were excellent, very professional.” Asked about the men, she said: “They were clearly wealthy. Some were flying in business class.” Israel Airports Authority confirmed that 18 British citizens were removed. Their luggage was removed, but it was determined that

JEWISH LEADERS MEET THE QUEEN Jewish leaders have attended an “uplifting” interfaith reception with the Queen at Buckingham Palace. About 160 people were greeted by the monarch at the event to celebrate their work bringing communities together. Elizabeth HarrisSawczenko, director of the Council of Christians and Jews, was at the meeting and

told Jewish News that guests shook hands with the Queen and it was “something she clearly wanted to do”, adding: “She was excited to meet us.” Attending alongside Mitzvah Day founder Laura Marks, David Dangoor and Trevor Pears, as well as Orthodox rabbis including Nicky Liss, she said the meeting was “very uplifting”.

there was no threat. The passengers were returned to the terminal and the plane took off after a two-hour delay. British Airways said: “We take these matters extremely seriously, and the appropriate action will always be taken.”  Tel Aviv was the fourth most popular destination for passengers travelling from Luton Airport last month, beating Ibiza, Dublin and Belfast. Latest data reveals that the Israeli city enjoyed a nine percent boost in passengers travelling from Luton.

From left: Laura Marks, founder of Mitzvah Day, Imam Qari Asim, Elizabeth HarrisSawczenko, director of CCJ, and Catriona Robertson, of the Christian-Muslim Forum

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27 June 2019 Jewish News


‘Role models’ honoured / Fun run / World News

Chief ’s new prayer for Shoah survivors Chief Rabbi Ephraim Mirvis has introduced a new Hebrew prayer for Holocaust survivors at a service in Hendon led by survivors’ grandchildren. The prayer was composed in English by Bernard Pentol, 82, of Wembley United Synagogue, and translated by the Chief Rabbi. It will be read each week during the service at Jewish Care facilities. Mirvis said survivors were role models who had “rebuilt their lives after the unspeakable horrors they experienced”. The minyan was organised

by a Holocaust survivor 40 years ago for elderly residents in a Jewish Care home, moving to Holocaust Survivors’ Centre when the home was redeveloped into retirement flats. It now serves as a focal point for honouring survivors past and present and is attended by survivors and the local community, many of whom find it difficult to walk to other shuls. Shul chair Anthony Pack said: “It is our hope that other shuls will also adopt the custom of reciting this special Survivors’ Prayer.”

From left: Scott Saunders (Chairman, March of the Living UK), Eve Kugler, Arek Hersh, Chief Rabbi, Jean Hersh, Mala Tribich, Cassie Matus (CEO, March of the Living UK) and Agnes Kaposki six take part in run A team of six survivors joined thousands of runners at the community’s biggest sporting fundraising event on Sunday. At this year’s Maccabi GB Community Fun Run, record numbers of runners descended on Allianz Park, with more than 7,500 participants and 85 charities and schools represented. Harry Olmer, Mala Tribich, Eve Kugler, Alfred Garwood, Agnes Kaposi and Arek Hersh faced the 1km route with family, friends, March

of the Living alumni, and Chief Rabbi Ephraim Mirvis, who started the walk. The March of the Living delegation has raised more than £4,000 for the charity to fund future trips so survivors can continue to tell their stories. Also present were Labour MP Luciana Berger, Israel Ambassador Mark Regev and the Lord-Lieutenant of Greater London, Sir Kenneth Olisa.  Pictures, see pages 22 & 23

£2.7M GRANT FOR UK’S School gets JN OLDEST SYNAGOGUE and PaJeS boost Britain’s oldest synagogue was this London and the broader British Jewish week awarded a £2.7million National experience. Lottery windfall for conservation work It will also showcase the shul’s array and to build a new religious and cultural of historical Judaica in one place for centre, writes Mathilde Frot. the first time, relay oral histories, Bevis Marks Synafeature an accessible digital gogue near Aldgate was archive, and a partnership one of six projects with Camden’s Jewish awarded a share of Museum will facilitate an £8m grant by the school visits. National Lottery Senior Rabbi Heritage Fund. Joseph Dweck, of the The Grade S&P Sephardi ComI listed building munity, said: “Bevis administered by the Marks is the cradle of Spanish and PortuBritish Jewry. The memguese Sephardi Commubers who built that synanity opened in 1701 after Rabbi Joseph Dweck gogue laid the foundaat Bevis Marks the readmission of Jews to tions of Jewish life in this Britain in 1656. country. This grant gives us the ability to The grant will fund conserva- tell the story in its fullness.” tion work and go towards the costs of The grant covers just under half of opening a new centre to tell the story the total costs of the centre, with other of its congregation within the context grants and donations expected to make of its neighbourhood, the East End of up the remaining shortfall.

Immanuel College pupils will be able to peruse a collection of about 80 graphic novels thanks to a £1,000 bursary from Partnerships for Jewish Schools (PaJeS) and Jewish News. The new collection includes versions of The Haggadah and literary classics, such as Jane Eyre, Oliver Twist, a selection of titles by Jane Austen, as well as DC Comics. The books were unveiled last week at the opening of the school’s de Gun-





Hundreds of Yachad supporters raised more than £50,000 for the organisation on Sunday at its annual gala at the British Museum. Speakers included the Labour MP Stephen Twigg, former chair of Labour Friends of Israel, who praised Yachad as an “increasingly important player” in Parliament.

One of Israel’s leading universities has announced the appointment of a new president. Professor Uri Sivan will take over at Technion in Haifa from Professor Peretz Lavie at the end of his 10-year term in October. “I stand on the shoulders of giants and I hope to see far, high and deep,” said Sivan.

Aberdeen City Council has unanimously passed a motion to adopt the internationally recognised definition of antisemitism. Jewish leaders welcomed the council’s decision to back the IHRA definition. Lord Provost of Aberdeen, Barney Crockett, said he was “proud of the city’s efforts to tackle discrimination”.



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zburg Library, attended by Rabbi David Meyer of PaJeS and headmaster Opening of Immanuel College’s de Gunzburg Library Gary Griffin. English teacher Ben Wolfin, who and used his prize money to open selected each volume and built the the new section. Judges praised accompanying bookshelves, was Wolfin’s efforts in championing rewarded in February for his “excel- literacy including through the lence in teaching literacy” at the monthly school newsletter distribPaJeS/Jewish News Teacher Awards uted to every student and teacher.

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Jewish News 27 June 2019

World News / Rescue plan / News briefs

Trump reveals £40bn Palestine rescue plan The Trump administration this week unveiled a £40billion Palestinian investment and infrastructure proposal intended to be the economic engine to power its muchanticipated but unreleased Middle East peace plan. The 10-year plan, which calls for a mix of public and private financing and intends to create at least one million jobs Jared Kushner with Benjamin Netanyahu in 2017, for Palestinians, was posted in the preliminary stages of the peace plan to the White House website before a conference in Bahrain. The event is being held amid terday were expected to take senior adviser and son-in-law, heavy scepticism about its via- place amid heightened regional Jared Kushner, faces high bility and outright opposition tensions over Iran that threaten hurdles in building support for the initiative. to overshadow its goals. from the Palestinians. The plan calls for projects With no official participaPalestinian leaders, angered by what they and their sup- tion from the two main pro- worth £21.5bn in the West porters see as blatant US bias tagonists, Israel and the Pales- Bank and Gaza, and £7.1bn, toward Israel, want nothing to tinians, and scant enthusiasm £5.8bn and £4.9bn for Palesfrom others, continued uncer- tinians in Egypt, Jordan and do with the workshop. On Saturday President tainty and strong doubts over Lebanon respectively and Mahmoud Abbas reiterated his the plan’s political vision and include those in the healthcare, rejection of the proposal and the the distraction of potential US- education, power, water, highIran conflict, expectations are tech, tourism, and agriculture conference. sectors. The ‘Peace to Prosperity’ decidedly low. The plan calls for the creaPresident workshop on Tuesday andChief yes- Rabbi Prince Charles meets EphraimDonald Mirvis Trump’s

tion of a “master fund” to administer the finances and implementation of the projects that it says are akin to the Marshall Plan that rebuilt Europe after the Second World War. It foresees more than doubling the Palestinian gross domestic product, reducing the Palestinian poverty rate by 50 percent and cutting the sky-high Palestinian unemployment rate to nearly single digits, according to the documents, which do not specify how the projects will be funded. It calls for linking the West Bank and Gaza with a modern transportation network, including high-speed rail. The White House called the plan “the most ambitious international effort for the Palestinian people to date”, adding: “Generations of Palestinians have lived under adversity and loss, but the next chapter can be defined by freedom and dignity.”


Your weekly digest of stories from the international press. ITALY

A Hebrew inscription has been identified on a medieval mikveh (Jewish ritual bath) found 14 metres under a church in the Sicilian city of Syracuse, in an area known as ‘Giudecca,’ a former Jewish population centre. Archaeologists said the inscription, consisting of six Hebrew consonants: “a-sh-r h-ftz”, referred to the surname of a prominent Jewish-Sicilian family, Hefetz in Hebrew, or Bonavoglia in Italian, according to the university statement.


Organisers of an online campaign urging Poles to call a hotline if they know of any seized Jewish property in Poland say they have so far had no calls, only antisemitic abuse. The campaign by Israeli organisation Shem Olam comes after the Polish Prime Minister, Mateusz Morawiecki, said restitution would be a ‘victory for Hitler’.


A Jewish woman whose 21-month-old baby died after being left in a hot car for 2.5 hours has been charged with child endangerment. Chaya Shurkin, 25, lives in the Orthodox community of Lakewood, New Jersey. A neighbour saw the toddler in distress and attempted to perform CPR, without success.


Two philanthropists have donated more than £3 million to fund security increases for the 500-strong Jewish community in the Swedish city of Malmo. Lennart Blecher, who is Jewish, and Dan Olofsson, who is not, told Dagens Nyheter newspaper on Sunday they wanted to “instill some hope in the Jewish population, so they feel that even if the politicians do not want to do something, there are people who are prepared to stand up for them”. The city has plans to open a Holocaust museum.

Survivor invites leading democrat to Auschwitz


A US Democrat politician has turned down a Holocaust survivor’s offer to tour Auschwitz following her remarks about concentration camps. Polish-born Edward Mosberg, 93, who survived several Nazi camps, and UK-born Holocaust restitution activist Jonny Daniels, had invited Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez. The lawmaker had sparked off a heated debate in the media about her use of the term, most widely associated with Nazi Germany, to describe migrant detention centres in the US. “It should be a requirement of all United States Congressmen to visit Auschwitz,”




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The central Israeli community of Raanana held its first Pride march. As many as 3,000 people took part in the parade in a city of some 80,000 residents that is about onequarter Orthodox, according to the Haaretz newspaper.

wrote Mosberg, honorary president of the Holocaust commemoration group From the Depths. Daniels also wrote in the invitation it was necessary because of her “lack of proper education on the Holocaust”. Amid criticism by Jewish groups and others – including by Yad Vashem, Israel’s state Holocaust museum – over the analogy she made, OcasioCortez on Twitter doubled down on her use of the term. She rejected the invitation on Twitter in response to a tweet from Republican Steve King, who called on her to visit the Nazi camp with Mosberg. She replied to King saying:

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez

“The last time you went on this trip it was reported that you also met w/ fringe Austrian neo-Nazi groups to talk shop. “So I’m going to have to decline your invite. But thank you for revealing to all how transparently the far-right manipulates these moments for political gain.” Her critics, including historian Deborah Lipstadt, argued her analogy was inaccurate and potentially harmful to efforts to reverse the government’s detainment policies.

27 June 2019 Jewish News


US–Iran crisis / Special Report

Eyes on Iran as it threatens to break nuclear constraints As Donald Trump ratchets up the tension with sanctions against the Islamic Republic, what does it mean for the wider region, and Israel? Stephen Oryszczuk speaks to a series of experts Few thought they had heard the last of Iran when it signed a deal on its nuclear programme in 2015. Sure enough, the country is once again taking centre-stage, amid renewed talk of war. Things are heating up. A drone has been downed, cyberattacks have been launched, and oil tankers have been attacked in the world’s busiest shipping lane, and Iran has threatened to break constraints in the nuclear deal. The US has just sent 2,500 troops to the region, along with four B-52 bombers, Patriot missile batteries and an aircraft carrier armed with 44 of its best fighter jets. Still, President Donald Trump does not want a war with Iran, in part because he wants to be re-elected in 2020 and his supporters would not countenance another US military foray in the Middle East. But John Bolton, his hawkish national security adviser, and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, a gung-ho former CIA chief, both seem itching to go, and Iran is not shirking the challenge. “We’re in a very risky and unstable situation,” says Dr Raz Zimmt, a research fellow at the Institute for National Security Studies (INSS) specialising in Iran. “Iranian leaders see no point negotiating with Trump, but they also don’t want war. What’s left is what Ayatollah Khomenei calls resistance. This means breaking their commitments under the nuclear deal, but I don’t think they will break out for a nuclear weapon. They know this would invite a major US military attack.” Others say Iran may still

choose to do so. If it chooses the route of confrontation and escalation, it has two main options, says Yaakov Lappin of the Begin-Sadat Center for Strategic Studies. “The first is destabilising the region through its proxies and through operations by the Islamic Republican Guard Corps (IRGC). The second is restarting its nuclear programme.” The one supports the other, says former Israeli National Security Advisor, Maj Gen (res) Yaakov Amidror. He thinks the short-term Iranian plan is to surround Israel with well-armed proxies to deter Israel from attacking it, while the long-term plan is to protect those proxies with an Iranian nuclear umbrella. Amidror describes this strategy as “the North Korea doctrine” insofar as South Korea is deterred from attacking the North because of the North’s nukes. Yet Sir Richard Dalton, Britain’s former ambassador to Iran, dismisses the idea of Tehran pursuing nuclear weapons as nonsense. “It knows it faces US and Israeli nuclear weapons and its strategic calculation is that it invites attack if it pursues its own. That said, it was utter folly for Israel, the US and the Saudis to sabotage the deal, since this removes any fundamental state interest to not develop nuclear weapons.” Of the proxies Amidror worries about, the most dangerous is Hezbollah, and Dalton says Israel’s calculations will be at least partly based on the possibility of a Hezbollah attack on northern Israel. “Israel must feel

Tough line: Iranian foreign minister Javad Zarif

restrained by that, so you’d expect it to be cautious, but that doesn’t appear to be the case. Sabotaging the nuclear deal has made it less safe. Now it is left wondering whether one provocative move could start a chain reaction which leads to a regional war.” Zimmt agrees that Iran can cause a lot of problems. “It will make sure everyone knows that if the pressure continues, it will not be the only one to pay the price,” he says. “Don’t play with fire.” As such, Israel “does not want a military confrontation with Iran,” says Zimmt. “Israel wants the US to keep applying pressure to get a better nuclear deal with more restrictions, limit Iran’s ballistic missiles and end its support for militias in the region.” Israel also wants Russian help to drive Iran out of Syria, which is why the Americans and Russians met in Israel this week. Israeli PM Benjamin Netanyahu thinks Russia’s Vladimir Putin will help to kick Iran out if he gets something from the US in return, such as sanctions relief or US recognition of Bashar alAssad’s regime. Either way, Bibi will be trying to engineer a “grand bargain”, says Ofer Zalzberg, a senior analyst with the International Crisis Group. Professor Ali Ansari, an expert on Iran at St Andrews Unversity, says: “The Russians could disrupt Iranian routes through Syria, though it may not be as easy as it thinks.... Russia certainly has leverage with Iran.” Whether Russia plays a role in any future war between the US and Iran is not yet known, but the question may soon arise. Last week Trump aborted a military response to Iran’s shooting down of a US drone. “Had that drone been a manned aircraft, we could now be at war,” says Dalton. If it comes to it, “the Iranians will fight back and are well capable,” he adds. “If the dream is of a limited, surgical war in which US airpower does such massive damage that Iran surrenders and agrees to all terms, it is just that – a dream.”

US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo speaks to the media on the recent attacks on two oil tankers travelling in the Strait of Hormuz


Jewish News 27 June 2019

Diaspora News / Holy sites / Frank house / Ketubah questions

A different view of Jerusalem Anne Frank’s A unique educational festival took place in Jerusalem last week, focused on exploring the life of the city beneath the ground. It was organised by the Eshkolot Project,is a Moscowbased educational scheme that hold events for Russianspeaking Jews in cities relevant to Jewish history. With the support of Genesis Philanthropy Group, the festival explored diverse aspects of the underground Jerusalem, from physical to metaphysical. In building the programme, Eshkolot took note of the “invisible matrix” of the underground city nd their reflections in religion. Jerusalem is not only a material reality providing a key to understanding the history of the place, but also a vast

street reborn In an Amsterdam street in the 1930s, a young newly-married couple step out. And high above them, leaning out of the window to see, is Anne Frank, captured on film by chance in what has become the only known moving image of the teenage diarist. The fleeting film clip is part of a new project released by Google to mark what would have been Anne Frank’s 90th birthday in mid-June. In

co-operation with the Anne Frank House in Amsterdam, Google put up a virtual exhibit in which it re-created the Street View of Anne’s childhood home. The exhibit allows the online visitor to see all the 1930s rooms, now a temporary home and work space for refugee writers. There are also documents from those who knew Anne, as well as details about her legacy and diary.

Russian-speaking festival-goers were invited to view Jerusalem underground

repository of myths and symbolic narratives, including underground social and artistic movements. Ilia Salita, Genesis Philanthropy Group CEO and presi-

dent, said: “Knowledge and education has always been an essential value for Jewish people all over the world. Eshkolot festivals master the art of exploring hidden

meanings and interpreting the things we live through, as an integral part of our heritage and meaningful Jewish experiences for the younger generations.”

Google recreated the street view of Anne Frank’s home

300-year Italian ketubah mystery finally solved An ancient scripture discovered in Florence, Italy, has shed light on an old Jewish Italian custom: to marry off couples in a mass ceremony on the eve of Passover. The contents of the manuscript, now up for auction, and the custom it describes, remained a mystery until Riccardo Di Segni, Chief Rabbi of Rome, made it his mission to learn more. Di Segni was examining a 317-year-old ketubah, or traditional Jewish marriage agreement. The ketubah, found in the Jewish archive in Rome, is covered in col-

Neo-Nazis are left dry

Picture Alliance: Polizeidirektion Gorlitz

Opponents of a neo-Nazi festival in the eastern German town of Ostritz have engaged in a novel form of protest: buying up the local supply of beer, so that the neo-Nazis did not get access to drink. The action came after police banned alcohol at the far-right “Schild und Schwert festival” (Sign and Sword) at a hotel in the town where around 500 neo-Nazis gathered last weekend.

Alcohol banned in Ostritz

ourful and golden decorations and shows hand-crafted drawings of a bride and a groom wearing fine clothes, alongside lions and decorated horses. But what caught Di Segni’s eye wasn’t the unique decoration, but the unusual date of the wedding: April 12, 1702, a day before Passover. Why did the groom, Shlomo Menahem, son of Shmuel Meir from Urbino, and the bride, Bonina, daughter of Raphael, marry on the eve of the holiday? Why did they choose this evening,

in which Jews traditionally finish the cleaning of their homes and go through the house checking for hidden crumbs? Rabbi Di Segni devoted years to researching the puzzling question, and discovered the Roman Jewish community used to organise a mass wedding on this particular date, holding one ceremony and one huge wedding feast. “We thought this was solely a Roman custom, but now we realise it was also practised by the Jews of Urbino and Florence”, added Di Segni.

Romania hosts key conference More than 12 countries have sent government representitives to Bucharest for a conference on combating antisemitism, organised by the World Jewish Congress and Romanian government. The meeting, the first professional conference of its kind, assembled representatives from countries including Bulgaria, Poland, Russia and Azerbaijan, to sit

with leaders of Jewish communities. Under the banner of the International Meeting Of Special Envoys and Coordinators Combating Antisemitism, the group was addressed by keynote speakers Elan Carr from the United States and Katharina von Schnurbein, the European Commission’s first co-ordinator on combating antisemitism.

Twelve countries attended the combating antisemitism event

The ketubah, discovered in Florence, dates back to 1702

Medieval exhibition opens in Bologna An exhibit featuring dozens of jewels as well as gold, silver and bronze artefacts from a recently rediscovered mediaeval Jewish cemetery was inaugurated at the Jewish Museum in Bologna, Italy, on 20 June. In 1393, a prominent Jewish family decided to buy a plot of land there, not far from where the Jewish

neighbourhood used to stand. The plot was donated to the Jewish community to serve as a cemetery. The cemetery was used until 1569, when the pope issued a decree expelling Jews from the cities of the papal state which controlled large parts of Italy at the time, including Bologna. The pontiff donated the land to a monastery, the

nuns there even receiving permission to dispose of the tombs and their contents as they pleased. The exhibit, open until January, has been organised by the Bologna Jewish Museum and the Superintendency of Archaeology, Fine Arts and Landscape for Bologna, in collaboration with the Jewish community of Bologna.

JERUSALEM WILL COME TO PARIS For nearly 150 years the name of Jerusalem has been absent from Paris’s city streets, after a devastating 19th century fire wiped out the historic Palais de Justice and surrounding streets, including tiny alley Rue Jerusalem. It was a place where pilgrims coming back from the Holy Land stayed on their return to the French capital.

But after the 1871 fire and the subsequent re-building of the area, the name Jerusalem was not reinstated on the Paris map. Now that is about to change. After discussions between the Central Consistory of France, the body that represents French Jewry in matters of religion, and the mayor of Paris, there is to be

a Jerusalem Square in the city’s 17th arrondissement, or neighbourhood. Joel Mergui, president of the Consistoire, thanked Paris Mayor Anne Hidalgo and the municipality of the 17th arrondissement, for the decision. The Consistoire had put forward the idea in January when Israel’s president Reuven Rivlin visited Paris.

27 June 2019 Jewish News


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Jewish News 27 June 2019

Editorial comment and letters ISSUE NO.



Obscene decision If the Labour Party was seeking another way to put two fingers up at the Jewish community, it couldn’t have found a better way than letting off Chris Williamson. When the poster boy of Jew-baiting was finally suspended earlier this year, few were confident this was the end of his Labour career. After all, it had taken a huge media spotlight to spark the suspension in the first place. Many assumed this case would be kicked into the long grass – like that of Ken Livingstone, Jackie Walker and other allies of the leadership – in order to avoid aggravating what the party knew to be major wound in relations. Even for this Labour party, Wednesday’s news was a new low. While party staff reportedly recommended that the MP be referred to Labour’s highest disciplinary body, reports that Keith Vaz fought this move on the grounds that MPs must soon decide whether they are standing at the next election is nothing less than sickening if true. A party that puts political expediency above fighting racism is not one that can any longer keep up the pretence of being the party of anti-racism. Williamson was, in Labour’s own words, suspending for a “pattern” of behaviour rather than an isolated offence. No one can seriously think anything will now change. Williamson, like Livingstone and Walker, will reoffend. And just as before, the party will have been warned. Corbyn must now make it clear this shocking (and for today’s Labour that’s a high bar) decision is not in his name and distance himself decisively from it. Or the many MPs who have spoken out so passionately on antisemitism will have no choice but to finally head for the door. This time there can be no ifs or buts for decent Labour MPs.

Is it to be Boris? Will the former London mayor and a self-proclaimed passionate Zionist take Number 10? Barring the kind of home-made when home-and-dry PR catastrophe, everything suggests so. In a radio interview this week, Mr Johnson said he admired Pericles of Athens. Pericles was a military commander, orator and statesman who promoted the arts, literature, learning and culture. He promoted democracy and reduced the power of the aristocracy. He let the poor watch theatrical plays for free and lowered the barriers to their entry into public and political life. All of this is good. Yet, like Boris, he was criticised as a populist. Among the biggest criticisms of Pericles is that he was a better speaker than strategist. Indeed, acclaimed American historian Donald Kagan called the Periclean strategy “a form of wishful thinking that failed”. Let us hope that Boris’s Brexit strategy isn’t “Periclean” in that sense, and if he takes Number 10, he is popular, not populist. Because populism is making a comeback across the world, and its habit of attacking ‘the other’ is never good news for Jews. If he stands against that, then he deserves every chance to stand for Britain on the world stage.

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Need for kosher guarantees Last week’s leader on the Liverpool and Manchester kashrut scandal hit the nail on the head (Jewish News, 20 June). This tragic episode highlights the need for a professional system of inspection and supervision to ensure kosher products are what they claim to be. Under the Kosher London Beth Din (KLBD), caterers and establishments are required to have an approved kashrut operative on site at all times. Many establishments have cameras linked to the Beth Din as well. Such supervision is intrusive as well as expensive, but is welcomed by most kosher

consumers, who appreciate the assurance that comes with a reliable hechsher. Kosher consumers are encouraged to ask for the shomer and enquire about the kashrut controls on site, so restaurateurs and kosher business owners are aware their investment in kashrut is worthwhile and appreciated by their customers.

Sketches & kvetches

Thanks to the KLBD’s ‘Is it kosher?’ app, website and Facebook page, the increased number of supermarkets stocking kosher products and the general expansion of kosher facilities, kashrut is in many ways easier to observe than ever before. The Really Jewish Food Guide lists thousands of kosher products readily available across the UK. Keeping kosher in smaller communities can be challenging, but KLBD will do everything it can to support kosher consumers and facilitate kashrut observance across the country. Rabbi Jeremy Conway Director, KLBD

SPURS FANS ARE NOT TO BLAME I’m appalled at your suggestion that Tottenham Hotspur fans are to blame for the abuse of the word Yid by supporters of other, lesser clubs. It is clear Spurs fans chant ‘Yid’, ‘Yiddoes’ and ‘Yid Army’ out of love for their team. It’s also absolutely clear fans of lesser teams abuse the term. How is this Spurs fans’ fault? If Ivor Baddiel – who, with his brother David, is running a two man, dog and pony show

against the term out of spite and frustration because their team (Chelsea) has no history – is so upset about it, I suggest he takes a stand with his fellow parvenu fans. Next time he hears it chanted as abuse at Stamford Bridge, he should tell the abuser: `“I find that chanting abusive and request you stop it forthwith.” Let’s see how far he gets.

Harry Nasich Harrow

‘YID’ HAD NO CONNECTION WITH FANS The word Yid was originally used in a derisory manner directed at the completely gentile board of Tottenham Hotspur FC in the late 1940s/ 1950s as they refused to spend any money on matters that needed attention.

It then had no connection with the proportionately small number of Jewish fans who are spread among all the London clubs. I remember it well.

Norman Brill Whetstone

27 June 2019 Jewish News

“Work Avenue helped me find my feet”

NO NEED TO BE SO EXPLICIT I was horrified and troubled by last week’s editorial on domestic violence. It brought home the horrors of being a victim, but did Jewish Women’s Aid, which does such good work for the community and saves so many women and children from abusive husbands and fathers, need to shock us with explicit language to get attention? My mind cannot begin to understand how it was ever thought appropriate to run a highly sexually explicit piece anywhere, let alone a family newspaper for the Jewish community

that children read. I understand the need to reach out to women who are in very unfortunate situations and terrible marriages, and they need to know there is help available to them and a way out if they reach out for it. However, despite the social media world we live in with all its boundaries removed, this goal can most certainly be achieved in a more modest way. Being so vulgar and descriptive is simply not necessary in this forum.

Samantha Langdon By email

Are you in this 1937 snap? May I ask you to publish the attached photograph, which was taken at the Order of Achei Ameth in London during Chanukah 1937. I would love to find out what they are doing now and how their lives have turned out. I can be contacted via Jewish News at

Stella Lucas OBE By email

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Jewish News 27 June 2019


Big donations are best made anonymously ALEX BRUMMER



friend with a Jewish background who just returned from her first visit to Israel was struck both by the beauty of Jerusalem the fact that every modern building and even the open spaces are splattered with the names of mostly American philanthropists. Big givers generally prefer to donate to something tangible that will live on after them. I was reminded of the urge for donors to see their name in lights by the donation to Oxford University of £150 million by US private equity baron Stephen Schwarzman of Blackstone. Oxford has described it as the biggest private endowment since the renaissance. In exchange for his generosity, a new building, scheduled to be built close to Blavatnik School of Government, will be known as the Schwarzman Centre for the Humanities. It will twin with the Schwarzman College of Computing at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. The list of recent ‘mega-donors’ to Oxford is testimony to Jewish values of philanthropy.

The telecoms tycoon Len Blavatnik donated some £80m to Oxford in 2012. The Oxford educated, Welsh born, tech-financier Michael Moritz donated £75m in 2012. Another Jewish financier David Harding of Winton Capital, made a record gift of £100m to Cambridge earlier this year. In terms of Britain’s post-Brexit economic future, these gifts must be considered vital. The UK has four out of the top 10 research universities in the world. There are none in the top 20 anywhere in Europe. In spite of the generosity of these endowments, they don’t always attract great applause. There will be Jewish charities that will argue that generosity starts at home, although most of these mega-donors do their bit for Jewish and Israeli causes too. But not everyone welcomes the new philanthropists. Tech champion Martha Lane Fox wrote on Twitter that Schwarzman’s gift would have been better spent on climate change. The Financial Times columnist Brooke Masters noted Schwarzman is a big advocate of what is known in finance as ‘carried interest’ that offers a handsome tax break. And since all charitable donations, in the UK and US, are tax deductible,

EVEN THE MOST GENEROUS DONATIONS CAN BECOME ENMESHED IN CONTROVERSY it might not be quite as munificent as it seems. Indeed, the biggest threat to donations is ethical. Schwarzman’s private equity group came under intense scrutiny in 2006 after the collapse of the quoted care home operator Southern Cross leaving 31,000 residents in the lurch. During its brief period of ownership, Blackstone extracted some £1bn from the enterprise. The danger of being caught in an ethical bind is well illustrated by other recent events. The Canadian philanthropist Yana Peel, wife of private equity executive Stephen Peel, stepped down as head of London’s Serpentine Gallery in Hyde Park, after it was disclosed she held

a share stake in NSO, an Israeli spyware company whose software allegedly was deployed against a friend of Jamal Khashoggi, the Washington Post journalist who died at the hands of the Saudi Arabia. Peel has described the criticism as ‘misguided.’ The Sackler Trust suspended a £1m donation to London’s National Portrait Gallery after some trustees and friends raised questions about the source of the funding, which largely comes from the pharma industry. The company allegedly stands at the centre the opioid epidemic in the United States. It is terrific so many North American donors reach beyond the US and Israel to stamp their names on British learning and culture. But in these hypersensitive days of political correctness, even the biggest, most generous and important donations can become enmeshed in controversy. I know of at least one very wealthy, respectable business donor who prefers to give anonymously precisely for that reason. The rabbis knew what they were talking about when they ruled that the most worthy form of giving is that which is not asked for and for which gratitude is not required.

Don’t hide the harsh truth of sexual abuse NAOMI DICKSON CHIEF EXECUTIVE JEWISH WOMEN’S AID


he distressing details of domestic and sexual abuse are not ones we wish to dwell on. But ignoring this harsh reality would fail those who are suffering without a voice. Turning a blind eye gives space for this despicable behaviour to flourish. Just as news of teenage murders and vicious knife attacks make us uncomfortable, this issue needs to be highlighted, not hidden. Every day my team lives through the disturbing details of abuse retold by women who finally raise their voice to ask for help and support. Indeed, it’s unpleasant. It’s stomachchurning. It takes place every minute of every day in homes in all communities. Throughout our lifetimes, one in four women will be affected by domestic abuse. One in five will be survivors of sexual violence. Jewish women are no different. And last weekend we saw newspapers full of comment about the relationship we have

with our neighbours. Jewish Women’s Aid (JWA), along with other domestic abuse charities, endorsed a joint statement explaining: “It’s not for us to judge what happens in anyone’s relationship, but it is for us all to take action if we are concerned about someone’s safety. “Don’t walk on by if you are worried. Ask if they are okay. Tell someone. Call the police.” Earlier this month, JWA launched the Dina Service – a new sexual support programme for Jewish women and girls, aged over 16, across the UK. Thanks to funding from Comic Relief and financial support from the community, we’re planning to provide the service for at


least two years. It includes free counselling, a dedicated helpline, and one-to-one independent sexual violence advocacy in north London. This week, we received a complaint from a mother [published on this week’s letters pages]. She was unhappy about the way a survivor had shared her harrowing story in the Jewish News. She claimed the content was “highly sexually explicit” and accused us of using a family newspaper to grab attention. “Being so vulgar and descriptive is simply not necessary in this forum,” she wrote. I’d argue a newspaper is exactly the forum to explore and challenge attitudes towards what is often perceived a taboo issue. Too many women and children have suffered in silence for far too long. The research bears this out – Jewish women wait on average 11.5 years before seeking help. We’ve also seen an increase in women reporting sexual violence. In the past three weeks, the number of people contacting our services has doubled. It’s not necessarily the result of more women being at risk of abuse, but that perhaps more people are aware and now confident to

come forward. The survivor’s story was not an advert, as the mother claimed. It’s unfortunately real life. It happened to another mother in our community and she courageously shared her suffering with us all to highlight the devastating and degrading nature of domestic abuse and sexual violence. Jewish News put a clear warning at the top of the story: “Editor’s note: The following article contains discussion of domestic and sexual violence that some readers may find upsetting.” To dilute the content of the survivor’s story is a betrayal of what she has experienced. We cannot brush challenging issues under the proverbial carpet. To do so would not only be a flagrant injustice to all those victims who have suffered, but also enable perpetrators to continue with impunity.  If you have been affected by any of these issues, call JWA’s new Dina Service helpline on 0800 801 0656. For more information about JWA, visit

27 June 2019 Jewish News



Jewish News 27 June 2019


Social investing revives a passion for giving to Israel DIRECTOR OF STRATEGY AND PHILANTHROPY, VIOLA ARTS

hilanthropy and Israel are part and parcel of my personal and professional life. Earlier in my career, I worked at the Israeli embassy. Since then, I’ve worked for some of the leading philanthropists in the Jewish world. Yet for those in my generation of thirtysomethings who aren’t quite so immersed in this field, their patterns of philanthropic engagement with Israel face an uncertain future. For our parents and grandparents, giving to Israel was a simple fact of life. For my generation, this can no longer be taken for granted. For many, the traditional models of Israelbased charity are unappealing. How can we bring the next generation into the fold and ensure that the British Jewish community will continue to engage dynamically with Israel in a way that strengthens us both? That’s a question that prompted me to

get involved as an adviser to Si3, UJIA’s social impact investment initiative. Si3 is an innovative new way to donate and the first of its kind from any UK Jewish communal organisation. This month I visited Israel with UJIA’s Si3 committee to see the fruits of that innovation first hand. Social impact investing is about more than writing cheques and handing out cash. It’s about identifying strategic needs and backing initiatives that can address them, while simultaneously generating a financial return. It’s a win win.




Our donors know their money is spent in the most efficient and impactful way possible, creating social enterprises in Israel that generate good and turn a profit. The profits are then reinvested to generate even more benefit for Israeli people and communities. There’s no substitute for seeing the impact yourself. During the visit we saw some of the social enterprises that Si3 has backed. Like Ampersand, an enterprise based in Bnei Brak providing WeWork-style shared office space to facilitate employment and entrepreneurship among the Charedi community. Or Enosh, which provides support to Israelis with mental illnesses and their families. We were given a tour of parts of Haifa by Hadarim, an urban regeneration fund that is leading the renewal of rundown areas in the city. Our group of UK Jewish donors got to see exactly how our donations were invested to generate long-term benefit for some of Israel’s most marginalised people. It feels like a more exciting, hands-on way to give. The president of the Caterpillar Foundation, Michele Sullivan, articulated it well

when she said: “Philanthropy used to be, ‘Here’s our cheque, we know you’ll do good, and away you go.’ But in today’s world, we’re not only going to give you a cheque, we want to know what you’re doing with it, and how many people will be impacted.” The field of social impact investing has grown rapidly in 10 years. All told, the emerging industry, which is less than a decade old, has at least £89billion in assets under management, according to a recent report by the Global Impact Investing Network. These figures show that it’s no fad. Of course there is still a role for traditional philanthropy. UJIA carries out both. But if we are to ensure that my generation are to keep the flame of Israel philanthropy alive then social impact investing provides an inspiring and sustainable source of fuel for the fire. Through Si3, UJIA has taken a cutting-edge method of philanthropy and applied it to British Jewish engagement with Israel. I’m proud to be involved in that and see a real opportunity to reignite the passion of future donors in how we give to Israel.

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27 June 2019 Jewish News



How I learned about my family’s tragic fate TALIA BLANK



ast month, on a visit to Auschwitz, I learned the full story of my family’s loss. My story is sad, but also one of hope and reconciliation. This happened on March of the Living UK, where I volunteer as a Bus Leader each year—a position I have maintained even after making Aliyah last July. This year, I led March of the Living’s first group of senior faith leaders, including rabbis, priests, and other figures from the Jewish, Christian, Muslim, Hindu, and Sikh communities. As a third generation British Jew, I was always aware that distant relatives had perished in the Holocaust, but never had names to make the connection real. Therefore, despite feeling the collective Jewish loss, on a personal level, I remained — somewhat thankfully — slightly detached from it. My mother knew little about her grand-

father, who came to the UK from Holland in the 1920s. He had seven siblings, some of whom were assumed lost in the Shoah. He died when my mother was a child, and neither he nor her father – an only child who died before I was born – discussed it. My father’s parents too, never spoke to him or his brothers about the Holocaust and since their parents had also been in England during the war, my father had no specific knowledge of relatives either. This year however, my aunt came across some new research about our family online, including the names and places of death of some of my late great grandfather’s seven siblings, and their young children, who died in Auschwitz. My aunt happened to send these names to my mother the morning of the day we were there, who then emailed them on to me as I stood in the crematorium. This discovery inspired my father to log on to his family tree, where he found the recently uploaded names of his grandfather’s relatives who also perished, and he too messaged me.

So I learned the names of my own relatives who died, while standing in the very place where some of them perished. For the first time, the Holocaust felt very, very personal and I was completely overwhelmed. That night, overcome and distressed, my new interfaith friends were there to comfort me. The following day, Holocaust Memorial Day, was the actual March of the Living – an event which sees 10,000 people from all over the world march the three kilometres from Auschwitz to Birkenau, as a tribute to the millions who perished. As our bus approached Auschwitz, I handed my group placards on which to write names of Holocaust victims, to hold whilst marching in their memory. In contrast to previous trips, I now had family names. One member asked me if she could write one my names on her placard, as she was not Jewish and had none of her own. Five other members from the group, all of different faiths, immediately echoed her request, and suddenly half of my bus marched in memory

of my own family, uniting to comfort me. This heart-warming gesture, during an emotional time, demonstrates how kind, insightful and sensitive this group was. It reflected the understanding they showed throughout the trip, creating the atmosphere necessary to have difficult conversations and form real friendships. It was an honour to explore one of the most horrific episodes of human existence with a multifaith group. It transformed my previously exclusively Jewish Holocaust education experiences. It changed the way I connect to my past and deepened my appreciation for Israel, where I now live. It also highlighted that even though the Holocaust is a Jewish tragedy, it has universal resonance. Those of all faiths and none can and should speak out against intolerance and acts of hatred, to ensure that the message of ‘never again’ becomes a global reality.  Visit Poland with March of the Living. Visit

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Jewish News 27 June 2019

Scene & Be Seen / Community

Maccabi Fun Run

Photo by Blake Ezra Photography

Record numbers of runners, including six Holocaust survivors, descended on Allianz Park last weekend for the 2019 Maccabi GB Community Fun Run, with more than 7,500 participants raising funds for around 85 charities and schools. They took part in the 1km, 5km, and 10km races, with the possibility of completing all three in a tri-run tournament. Israel Ambassador Mark Regev, Chief Rabbi Ephraim Mirvis and Lord-Lieutenant of Greater London, Sir Kenneth Olisa OBE, set off races and congratulated runners.

27 June 2019 Jewish News


Photo by Blake Ezra Photography

Community / Scene & Be Seen

Sloane Simon, six, and Libby Cowan, seven, were among supprters, service users and staff who took part in the run for Jewish Deaf Association.

Chief Rabbi Ephraim Mirvis and Lord-Lieutenant of Greater London, Sir Kenneth Olisa OBE, were among the high-profile VIPs to make an appearance at the community fun run.

Israeli Ambassador Mark Regev, pictured, congratulated participants on their efforts and launched the 10k race, taking part in it himself.

Photo by World Jewish Relief

Photo by Blake Ezra Photography

Around 50 Norwood staff members took part to raise funds to continue supporting children and families in crisis and adults with learning disabilities and autism. Pictured are residents from Ravenswood, Norwood’s residential accommodation in Berkshire after completing the 5km run.

Photo by Blake Ezra Photography

Luciana Berger, MP for Liverpool Wavertree, pictured with Camp Simcha runner Jonah Stanton, who took part in the 10K.

Photo by Blake Ezra Photography

Myisrael had more than 100 runners taking part this year to continue to help British donors support charitable organisations in Israel. Pictured is the charity’s chair of trustees, Simon Walton (centre) surrounded by family and friends.

Chai Cancer Care raised more than £33,000 to support families affected by a cancer diagnosis, with a record number of 250 participants this year, aged from one to 76. Team Landau, pictured, are a large group of friends and family who raised £11,338. Following the run, team member Fiona Sherling said: “Chai is a wonderful organisation that has helped many sufferers and their families so much.”

The Mitchell family, pictured, including Ella, two, and Libby, five, took on the 1K challenge for World Jewish Relief, raising more than £500, alongside other runners and Paul Anticoni, the charity’s chief executive.



Jewish News 27 June 2019



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27 June 2019 Jewish News


Community / Scene & Be Seen

Glitz and glam at Jewish Care Photos by Grainge Photography & Sam Churchill

Big-name presenters helped Jewish Care to raise £5.2million at its annual dinner on Monday, joined by more than 20 clients who featured in a series of films shown throughout the event. X Factor’s Dermot O’Leary reported on the Holocaust Survivors’ Centre 25th anniversary party and Tracy-Ann Oberman was joined by lyricist Don Black at a double 100 and 101st birthday party at Lady Sarah Cohen House.


Jewish News 27 June 2019

27 June 2019 Jewish News


Great Jewish Bake Day / Lifestyle


IN THIS SECTION: Travel 29 Competition 37


Francine Wolfisz talks to Allegra Benitah – aka Challah Mummy – ahead of Jewish Care’s Great Jewish Bake Day


orget the sticky little baking fingers covered in dough and clothes and surfaces smothered in flour dust. For Allegra Benitah, better known to her 5,000 fans on Instagram as Challah Mummy, the joy of baking is all about letting youngsters “get hands on” in the kitchen, even if it means keeping wipes and mops at the ready. The daughter of the broadcaster and journalist Vanessa Feltz has taken social media by storm over the past year with her contemporary twist on the humble challah, creating everything from helicopters, fire engines and tractors to hot air balloons, flower garlands and rainbow swirls out of the otherwise familiar bread. Now the 33-year-old is encouraging others to dust off their rolling pins and get involved with Jewish Care’s Great Jewish Bake Day, which takes place next Wednesday, with funds raised going towards supporting older members of the community. As Allegra advises, the annual fundraiser is more about bringing generations together and taking part, rather than producing showstopping cakes. “I’m all about the having a go and don’t really think about the finished product at all,” says Allegra, of making her challah on a weekly basis alongside her children, Ezekiel, five, and Neroli, three. “I’d much rather they get involved, get excited and their clothes and the house get filthy, but

that in return they feel accomplishment and pride. When you can take something you’ve made and share it with the people you love, that’s an even better level of achievement.” Allegra speaks with such passion it’s easy to assume this has always been her life’s path. In fact, her Challah Mummy alter-ego only came about 18 months ago by what she describes as “a complete accident”. Before having her son, Allegra was a Cambridge graduate and tax lawyer working for a Magic Circle firm, but after five years made a decision. “I was torn between the mother I needed to be and the lawyer I needed to be for my firm,” she says. “I didn’t see how I could do both to the best of my abilities, so I decided to walk away from my career in the law and become a full-time mummy.” At home one rainy afternoon, she was trying to find an activity to keep the children busy when she decided to pull out a challah recipe and make a rainbow challah, instead of a regular one. “That’s how it started,” she recalls. “The following Shabbat they asked what we were making this week and so we started making these fun and unusual things out of challah.” With the help of her tech-savvy sister, Saskia, colourful photographs of Allegra’s creations were uploaded to her own Instagram page, which today has more than 5,500 followers. “It’s completely blossomed and turned into this whole new career for me, which I never anticipated, planned or expected – and I’m absolutely thrilled to have found,” she adds. As for the inspiration behind her creations – which includes her sunflower pesto “tear and share” challah – Allegra, who is married to Dan, cites her children’s imaginative suggestions, as well as the seasonal fruit and vegetables she grows at home and Clockwise from top: Blood orange challah; elderflower, strawberry and mint challah; Allegrah with her children at one of Jewish Care’s homes

uses in her recipes. “We live in Hendon and have this tiny concrete patch for a garden, so we grow in pots and hanging containers. We have more than 30 varieties of fruit and vegetables in the garden, which is amazing, and teaches the little ones so much about nature and growing your own.” Allegra says her mum was a little miffed with her new choice of career, but quickly became a fan. “She was so used to my daughter, the Cambridge graduate, the tax lawyer – and now you’re making challahs shaped like a turtle,” she laughs. “But then she saw how my son can make challah by himself aged five and how as a family we are all benefiting from this, so now she’s very proud of me – and, of course, loves eating my challah!”  Jewish Care’s Great Jewish Bake Day is on Wednesday, 3 July. Email bakeday@, or call 020 8922 2834

See Challah Mummy’s Great Jewish Bake Day recipe for roasted balsamic purple veg challah at


Jewish News 27 June 2019

Lifestyle / Film

As Toy Story 4 opens in cinemas, we celebrate 10 reasons why this Pixar favourite is soooo Jewish!

Y O T S ARE US ! You’ve Got A Friend In Me, which features throughout the franchise. Newman has scored nine DisneyPixar animated films, which also include A Bug’s Life, Monsters Inc, Cars, The Princess and the Frog and James and the Giant Peach. He has received two Oscars, including one for Toy Story 3’s We Belong Together, as well as 20 Academy Award nominations, three Emmys and seven Grammys.

1. Spuds you like! Toy Story just wouldn’t be the same without our perennial favourite, Mr Potato Head – and for the first three films, the character was voiced by the American-Jewish comedian Don Rickles. When he died in 2017, aged 90, there was much anticipation as to who would voice the character until director Josh Cooley confirmed it would in fact be Rickles, by request and permission from his family. In an interview with Entertainment Weekly, Cooley explained: “He signed to be in Toy Story 4. Unfortunately we did not get a chance to record him for the film. But we went through 25 years of everything we didn’t use for Toy Story 1, 2, 3, the theme parks, the ice capades, the video games — everything that he’s recorded for Mr Potato Head. And we were able to do that [using audio technology]. And so I’m very honoured [his family] asked us to do that, and I’m very honoured that he’s in the film. Nobody can replace him.” The character’s much-loved other half, Mrs Potato Head, is voiced by American-Jewish actress Estelle Harris.

2. Potato punim! Staying with the Mr Potato Head theme, the toy was actually invented by George Lerner, son of Jewish immigrants from Romania, who came up with the concept of pinning different facial features onto real fruit and vegetables. In 1952, three Jewish siblings, the Hassen-

5. Write stuff! feld brothers, took up the idea and released the very first Mr Potato Head, with a fully plastic version made in the 1960s after parents complained about their children playing with rotting vegetables! As for their company, the name was changed to Hasbro and it became one of the biggest toy companies in the world.

3. Tribal support A host of Jewish actors have lent their voices to the latest Toy Story film, including Jeff Garlin, who returns as Buttercup, a stuffed white unicorn with a gruff voice and sarcastic personality and Patricia Arquette, who takes up the role of Harmony’s Mum. Look out also for comedians Mel Brooks and Carl Reiner who lend their talents as the not-so-inconspicuously named Melephant Brooks and Carl Reineroceros.

4. You’ve Got A Friend In Me! Toy Story just wouldn’t be the same without the musical talents of Randy Newman and his lovable song,

Rashida Jones – one of eight writers credited on Toy Story 4 – is the daughter of American-Jewish actress Peggy Lipton and musician Quincy Jones. Having grown up in a mixed race family, Jones identifies as Jewish and said in a recent interview: “In this day and age, you can choose how you practise and what is your relationship with God. I feel pretty strongly about my connection, definitely through the Jewish traditions and the things that I learned dating the guy that I dated. My boyfriends tend to be Jewish and also be practicing ... I don’t see it as a necessity, but there’s something about it that I connect with for whatever reason.” She was formerly engaged to music producer Mark Ronson and last year gave birth to a son with musician Ezra Koenig.

6. Raaar talent! American-Jewish actor Wallace Shawn lends his vocal skills as Rex, a cowardly dinosaur who is anything but ferocious. Away from the Toy

Story franchise, he’s best known for playing Dr John Sturgis on Young Sheldon, as well as Grand Nagus Zek in Star Trek: Deep Space Nine and Cyrus Rose in Gossip Girl.

7. All dolled up! Here’s some Toy Story trivia: Barbie – who was invented by AmericanJewish entrepreneur Ruth Handler and named after her real-life daughter – was meant to appear in the original Toy Story as Woody’s girlfriend, but Mattel refused permission to use the iconic doll, thinking that the first ever computeranimated film would not be successful. Bo Peep was instead chosen as Woody’s love interest. After seeing the massive success of Toy Story,

Mattel allowed Barbie to appear in the sequels, with Ken appearing in Toy Story 3.

8. Ken you believe it? Speaking of which, Barbie’s hunky other half was invented by Ruth Handler’s husband, Elliot, who named him after the couple’s real-life son, Kenneth. Since his debut in 1961, Ken has held at least 40 different occupations. Handler and his wife, who co-founded Mattel, developed some of the biggest-selling toys in history alongside Barbie, including Chatty Cathy, Creepy Crawlers and Hot Wheels.

9. Reach for the stars! Tom Hanks is the well-known voice of Woody, but it could’ve been all so different: the American-Jewish actor Paul Newman was actually considered, but later accepted a different Pixar role, as Doc Hudson in Cars. Meanwhile, comedian Billy Crystal was approached to play Buzz, but he turned it down in favour of Mike Wazowski in Monsters, Inc.

10. Success Story! Lee Unkrich started out as an editor on the first Toy Story, became codirector on Toy Story 2 and then made his solo directorial debut on Toy Story 3 – winning an Oscar on the way. He then went on to direct another award-winning film for Pixar, Coco, before parting ways with the company after 25 years to spend more time with his three children.

27 June 2019 Jewish News


Travel / Lifestyle

Loch over there!

Above: Highland cattle graze above Loch Lomond and, below, The Jacobite on Glenfinnan Viaduct. Bottom left: Buchanan Street

Louise Cahill finds picture-perfect landscapes around Loch Lomond, then explores Glasgow’s quirky arts scene and historic Jewish life


roudly pinning on my Gryffindor prefect’s badge, I stake my claim to the open window between the carriages and take aim with my camera for the perfect shot. We’re on board the world-famous Jacobite steam train – better known as The Hogwarts Express in the Harry Potter films – and taking in some of Scotland’s most impressive scenery from Fort William to Mallaig. As we approach an oppressive, dark tunnel, the train slows, billowing steam in our faces and the cameras go crazy, as fans attempt to capture the Glenfinnan Viaduct, which has appeared throughout the popular film series as the bridge to Hogwarts. That evening, my hair’s speckled with soot, a welcome souvenir from the Jacobite. Our train journey was the highlight of a day that began early, waiting with my husband Ron outside the Hampton by Hilton Glasgow Central, which we chose for its excellent position and service. Kilted Stuart, our driver-guide from Discover Scotland Tours, greeted us, before collecting 14 more participants. Settling on the luxury minicoach, we appreciated the company’s ethos of small group tours. Stuart drives along Loch Lomond and we’re transfixed by the views, passing Ben Lomond (3193 ft), Scotland’s most southerly Munro, and

Inchconnachan, island home to some unusual residents – capercaillie and wallabies! Stuart regales with tales of Scottish outlawturned folk hero Rob Roy MacGregor, Bonnie Prince Charlie, and the Battle of Culloden. We are amazed to learn of gold in the rocks nearby. Finally we’re at 1,480ft, where it’s too cold for sheep, and sporty tourists can enjoy the nearby Glencoe ski centre. It’s spectacular in the Glen of Coe, including The Three Sisters, mountains known as Faith, Hope, and Charity, and it’s not hard to see why James Bond producers chose this region and nearby Glen Etive as the backdrop to Skyfall. Back in Glasgow, we have time to explore a city full of history, spectacular architecture and extensive culture. It’s a few minutes’ walk from the hotel to Sauchiehall Street, with its popular shops, including department store Watt Brothers, which was founded more than 100 years ago. Mackintosh At the Willow is a striking building and notable internationally for being the only surviving tea room designed completely by Charles Rennie Mackintosh. Smart, buzzy Buchanan Street quickly becomes our favourite while en route to George Square to take the City Sightseeing Glasgow hop-on and hop-off tour bus. Passengers smile as we pass the statue of the Duke of Wellington on his horse, complete with a traffic cone on his head. What began as a student prank in the 1980s is now an iconic Glasgow landmark. We bus past Glickman’s Confectionery, started by Isaac Glickman in 1903, and still run by the family. You can buy delights such as macaroon cake, frying pan lollies and soor plooms, a green boiled sweet. Also on the bus route is Riverside Museum, an impressive collection of transport, and

an old, cobbled Glasgow street. Children particularly will enjoy car and motorbike walls, while the waltzer and fairground memorabilia trigger memories for older visitors. Berthed nearby, The Tall Ship (Glenlee), built in Port Glasgow and now a museum ship, is a reminder of this city’s shipbuilding past and a nod to some of the most famous ships that began life here, including HMY Britannia, Cunard Queens and RMS Lusitania. Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum is a must-visit, if only for the startling installation, Floating Heads, which involves more than 50 white heads with differing emotions, created by artist Sophie Cave, which hang over the foyer. We enjoyed the large collection housed within The French Gallery, as well as the impressively-preserved Sir Roger the elephant, which arrived in Glasgow around 1900 in a travelling menagerie and quickly became a beloved icon. Glasgow’s most haunting, bizarre, but enthralling attraction is Sharmanka Kinetic Theatre. Eduard Bersudsky, who lived in Leningrad, made kinetic sculptures (kinemats) from scrap and old furniture. After he met Tatyana Jakovskaya, they founded Sharmanka, which opened in St Petersburg in 1990 and the pair arrived in Glasgow in 1996. We’re mesmerised by the colourful, intricate,

moving sculptures enhanced by music. Jerusalem of Gold plays and I’m startled to see a figure of a crucified man wearing a kippah. It’s certainly a talking point. Elsewhere in Glasgow there are more kippot – Shalom Tartan ones, on sale at the Scottish Jewish Archives Centre (SJAC), based at Garnethill Synagogue, the country’s oldest purposebuilt synagogue, which opened in 1879. We’re interested to learn more about the community, which arrived in Scotland in the late 1600s. There are boxes of historical material and display cabinets of artefacts. With an extensive computer database, the SJAC welcomes research and family history enquiries. SJAC’s Fiona Brodie tells us about a lotteryfunded centre, which will open next year and include new public services, a Scottish Holocaust-era Study Centre, and guided visits. At the synagogue’s Shabbat morning service, I scan the exceptional decor. Cantor Eddie Binnie and the choir sing beautifully, and Ron is honoured to be called up to dress the Sefer Torah. We’re made so welcome, and the kiddush is a delight as we enjoy more Scottish hospitality – we unquestionably had many cups of kindness in Scotland.

LOUISE’S TRAVEL TIPS Louise stayed at Hampton By Hilton Glasgow Central, in West Campbell Street, where rates for a queen double room, including breakfast, start from £87 per night ( She travelled by Virgin Trains (, which offers standard class fares for London to Glasgow, from £30. Useful websites: and


Jewish News 27 June 2019

27 June 2019 Jewish News


Orthodox Judaism

SEDRA Shelach Lecha BY RABBI ZVI SOLOMONS At what age do you grow up? This is the question I often pose to children when I speak at schools, and the answer varies, depending on the age of the children and sometimes the age of the parents. Jews know that we start growing up at 12 if we are female and 13 if we are male, corresponding approximately with the age of puberty. That is why we celebrate becoming bar or batmitzvah at those ages. But this is only the start. We don’t suddenly become an adult after hitting that age, any more than a child does in English law at 10 (age of criminal responsibility), 16 (age of consent), 17 (driving age) or 18 (the age in the UK of full civil rights). We all know teenagers who have yet to grow up and, according to our rabbis, fully growing up is only achieved when a person can house, clothe and feed themselves. So what’s this got to do with this week’s parsha, Shelach Lecha, which talks of the spies who bring back a false account of the land? The Torah tells us that only those aged over 20 were punished (Numbers 14:29) and later described those younger than that age (Deuteronomy 1:39) as “children that . . . have no knowledge of good or evil.” From this, Rabbi Shmuel bar Nahmani taught in Rabbi Yonatan’s name that God does not punish for the actions people take in their first 20 years (Bavli, Shabbat 89b). If only it could be so for the rest of our lives, but with age comes the heavier responsibility of our actions.  Rabbi Zvi Solomons serves the Jewish Community

of Berkshire in Reading,

What’s in a number?

This week, number...


BY RABBI GARRY WAYLAND Legend has it that Hippasus, a scholar in the school of Pythagoras (of right-angledtriangle-theorem fame) was sentenced to death when he discovered the concept of irrational numbers: that not every number, such as the square root of two, can be neatly expressed as a fraction. This seemingly outrageous possibility had no place in a society that worshipped numbers and specifically, each number played a unique role in the building blocks of the universe. We live in a “real” world – there are infinitely many numbers between three and four (including fractions, recurring decimals, the square root of 10, and Pi), and so may struggle to relate to this numerology that was so predominant across the world. Yet the number 10 seems to be

different. Perhaps if we had been born with eight or 12 fingers, things would be different, but 10 feels naturally special. To mention some of the myriad ways in which 10 is a significant number in Judaism – 10 Commandments, 10 State-


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ments of Creation — seems to diminish its uniqueness. The 16th century mystic and philosopher the Maharal says 10 is when individuals become collective, the way 10 Jews become a minyan. Rav Kook says the 10th letter, yud, is “the number in its perfection that unifies every distinct detail”. This letter – the smallest in the Hebrew aleph-bet – floating, dot-like, above at the top of the line, represents how “every detail and picture is subsumed and elevated” within this tiny point. We may not appreciate the sanctity in every number – we are so caught up in the greater splicing of every number: time becomes about the millisecond, money becomes about the fraction of a penny and son on. In doing so, we lose the whole, and in losing the whole we can lose part of ourselves. When we count to 10 we are reminded that we are part of a multiplicity, but it is also our uniqueness within that makes us count.  Rabbi Wayland is an educator for US Living and Learning


Jewish News 27 June 2019

Progressive Judaism

The Bible Says What? ‘King David’s son raped his sister’ BY RABBI ELANA DELLAL The second book of Samuel, chapter 13, is home to one of the most disturbing of our ancient narratives.King David’s son, Amnon, is infatuated with his half-sister Tamar, so his friend Jonadab helps him plan a way to defile her. Feigning sickness, Amnon summons Tamar to his room to care for him. He rapes her while she protests. She pleads with him to marry her instead of taking her by force, to no avail. She leaves his room and puts ashes on her head in mourning. The text shares that, after this encounter, Amnon’s loathing for Tamar is stronger than his original lust for her. Years later, Tamar’s brother Avshalom takes Amnon’s life for what he did. The Talmud attempts to answer numerous questions about the text. In this discussion, the Talmud shares that Amnon hated Tamar because, while he was raping her, she tied one of her hairs around his genitals, severing his penis. Some Talmudic

rabbis argue Tamar did this purposely, while others argue it was unintentional. They also engage in a discussion around secluding men from women that are forbidden to them. Both the original Torah text and the Talmud are challenging in their objectification of women and perpetuation of systems of gender power. Neither gives Tamar any advocacy in this narrative. There is an element of victim blaming in accusing Tamar of severing Amnon’s genitals, an assumption she must have caused his hatred. Setting up systems of seclusion to keep a man from engaging in forbidden sexual relations, without facing gender violence and its damage, excacerbates systems of gender privilege and power. Our texts remind us of our history of gender violence and encourage us to advocate for equality.

Elana Dellal is on the rabbinic team at Liberal Jewish Synagogue

Progressively Speaking Are hunger strikes in line with Jewish values? BY STUDENT RABBI DEBORAH BLAUSTEN As Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe’s husband Richard joins her hunger strike to pressure the Iranian government to release her after three years in captivity, it invites a conversation about whether hunger strikes are a protest tool in line with Jewish values. There are two competing religious duties at play in this situation. On the one hand is Pidyon Shvuyim, the obligation to bring about the release of one’s fellow who has been unjustly imprisoned. The Shulchan Aruch, one of our foundational legal codes, teaches that every moment a person delays in freeing a captive when they are able to expedite their freedom is considered equivalent to murder. Being held captive is understood Talmudically to be worse than starvation or death, and redeeming captives is something Maimonides and others have taught that all Jews should work towards.

On the other hand is the principal of Pikuach Nefesh – the preservation of life. In Jewish law, preserving life is a duty, and hunger strikes are a real and serious danger to the lives of those who undertake them. It is not that long in British memory since the deaths of several prisoners on hunger strike, and although time has passed, the real danger this tactic presents must not be forgotten. In this case, we encounter the question of whether it is acceptable to put your life on the line to try and save the life of another. Jews are

permitted to endanger themselves to save another, as long as the danger in which they put themselves is not greater than that experienced by the person they are trying to save – and as long as they have a reasonable chance of achieving their goal. A hunger strike is not something embarked upon lightly. It reflects the severity of circumstance and the depth of concern on the part of the striker. It is right that people do whatever they can to secure the liberty of captives, but the approach must be morally preferable and in accordance with Jewish values. We cannot condemn someone for embarking on a hunger strike, especially one rooted in deep love and concern, but the best situation to hope for is a safe resolution and that freedom is on the horizon.  Deborah Blausten is a rabbinic student at Leo Baeck College

27 June 2019 Jewish News


Advertising feature / Ask Our Experts

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Jewish News 27 June 2019

Ask Our Experts / Professional advice from our panel

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27 June 2019 Jewish News


Professional advice from our panel / Ask Our Experts

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Jewish News 27 June 2019

SEN Class Teacher for Gesher School

Gesher is a unique Jewish Independent SEN Primary School that opened its doors in September 2017. Our cohort of children present with a range of Special Educational Needs, including language, communication and social pragmatic difficulties, and those associated with ADHD and specific learning difficulties. We also specialise in Autism Spectrum Challenges (ASC). Our curriculum is therapy based and we have a multi professional team approach to supporting the school. We are a dedicated and passionate team that are working towards providing an Outstanding SEN School.

An exciting opportunity has arisen for an outstanding and inspirational SEN teacher to join our team. Experience with Special Educational Needs would be advantageous. The candidate does not need to be of a Jewish Faith although, a respect for the Ethos and Values of the school would be expected. We are looking for an exceptional candidate who: • • • • • • • • • • •

is an exemplary, outstanding SEN classroom practitioner and is able to work alongside a team of TA’s and therapists has the ability to work as part of a forward looking strategic team has a deep understanding of how children with special educational needs learn is secure in their knowledge of differentiation of the National Curriculum to accelerate pupil progress and raise attainment is a proven, successful team player with excellent motivational and interpersonal skills In return we can offer: to be part of a dynamic and forward thinking team of professionals who are passionate about SEN to be part of a new, upcoming and outstanding school that will have links to the University of Cambridge and Professor Simon Baron Cohen a supportive, warm and passionate team access to Gesher’s staff well-being package

Completed applications should be sent to Deadline for applications: ongoing basis The appointment is subject to an enhanced DBS clearance. The school is committed to safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children and young people.

Dayan – London Beth Din

United Synagogue Job Description JOB TITLE:

Chesed Projects Administrator

£90,000 – £110,000 pa depending on experience


The US Centre, 305 Ballards Lane, Finchley, N12 8GB


Head of US Chesed

The United Synagogue is looking for a full-time Dayan to join the internationallyrespected London Beth Din, under the leadership of the Rosh Beth Din, Dayan M. Gelley.


Full time, 35 hours per week


Competitive remuneration package (depending on experience)


4 weeks holiday, plus Statutory Bank Holidays Auto-Enrolled Pension Ride-to-Work Scheme Auto-Enrolled Pension

The Dayan will participate in all areas of work of the London Beth Din, which provides a full range of services to the United Synagogue and wider British Jewish Community, including Dinei Torah, Gittin, Kashrus, Shechita, Gerus and Birur Yahadus. You will welcome the opportunity to work in close collaboration with the Chief Rabbi, help guide and advise the United Synagogue Rabbinate and respond to She’ailos from our community at large. This senior role calls for a Talmid Chacham of repute, with experience consistent with the highest standards expected of the London Beth Din. You will have an understanding of, and sympathetic approach to, the ethos of the United Synagogue an orthodox body open to all Jews regardless of their level of observance. The successful candidate will be able to demonstrate high-level knowledge in most, if not all, areas of Beth Din work and have had considerable experience in the field. You will have good interpersonal skills, a sensitive and empathetic approach, strong verbal and written communication capabilities and an understanding of British culture and the British Jewish community. You will be capable of functioning as part of a team, whilst working unsupervised to the highest level of professional standards on often sensitive, confidential matters. Closing date for receipt of applications – Monday, 29 July, 2019

To view the job description and apply for this position, please go to our website

JOB PURPOSE To provide administrative support to all the elements of the US Chesed Department

Principal Responsibilities:  To provide support to the Head of Chesed and the department in the organisation of key Chesed projects  To ensure the smooth running of the Chesed Department, including answering the main Chesed telephone number and responding to enquiries  To carry out the administrative duties in relation to the main functions of the Chesed Department i.e. Community Cares, Jewish Visiting covering both hospital and prisons, social responsibility initiatives and the Chesed Bursary Fund e.g. maintaining up to date listings of chaplains, visitors, arranging meetings and taking minutes  Organising volunteer training events  Liaison with volunteers including Synagogue Community Care co-ordinators, hospital and prison chaplains  Managing petty cash for the department  Researching potential new Chesed Projects  

Publicising the work of the Chesed Department using traditional methods and tweeting, posting on Facebook and other social media To produce regular newsletters to update volunteers on various aspects of our work

  

To assist in the planned computerisation of client and volunteer records To organise the Pesach and Rosh Hashanah support programmes To assist in event management e.g. in our various conferences etc.


27 June 2019 Jewish News

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14 16




9 10 13 15 16 19 21 22 23


17 19




ACROSS 1 Bloated (5) 4 Amulet (5) 7 Number of strokes a good golfer is expected to make on each hole (3) 8 Small sign (of hope) (7)

All puzzles © Puzzler Media Ltd -

C. All of the above



B. Includes in-built Alexa, SOS mode, Bluetooth connectivity and Wi-Fi video sharing

Closing date 11 July 2019


Singe (4) Polluted air (4) Bind (3) British nobleman ranking between a marquess and a viscount (4) Standard (4) Putting items in a suitcase (7) Cooking surface (3) Cuddly bear (5) Metals mixture (5)

DOWN 1 Grape seeds (4) 2 Additional (7) 3 Fermented milk product (6) 4 Cut neatly (4) 5 Cashpoint in a bank’s wall (inits)(3) 6 Illusory image (6) 11 Official at a public event (7) 12 Receptacle for infusions (6) 14 Puzzling riddle (6) 17 Light and spacious (4) 18 Do as ordered (4) 20 White fish (3)

Fill the grid with the numbers 1 to 9 so that each row, column and 3x3 block contains the numbers 1 to 9.

4 6 8 1

1 7 4

5 1

8 3 9 2 5

3 7 2

3 8 1 8 4


3 1




Last issue’s solutions Crossword


ACROSS: 1 August 4 Kerb 8 Flu 9 Gainful 10 Lumpy 11 Ensue 13 Lithe 15 Onion 17 Compare 19 Ass 20 Lurk 21 Rashly DOWN: 1 Awful 2 Gourmet 3 Soggy 5 Elf 6 Bulge 7 Life 12 Spinach 13 Local 14 Exam 15 Opera 16 Nasty 18 Mar

See next issue for puzzle solutions.

5 8 2 1 7 4 6 3 9

4 6 9 8 5 3 2 1 7

1 3 7 9 6 2 8 4 5

2 1 8 3 9 6 5 7 4

7 4 6 5 2 1 3 9 8

9 5 3 4 8 7 1 2 6

8 2 1 6 4 9 7 5 3

3 9 5 7 1 8 4 6 2

6 7 4 2 3 5 9 8 1



By Paul Solomons

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Jewish News 27 June 2019

Business Services Directory ANTIQUES 44

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