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7 October 2021

1 Cheshvan 5782

Issue No.1231


Good riddance. David Miller has been fired by the University of Bristol, one month after CAA commenced a lawsuit against the University. The case was brought on behalf of brave Jewish students amid pressure from a Jewish community disgusted by Miller’s antisemitic conspiracy theories. See inside cover.

Marathon effort for Jewish charities, pages 24 & 25


Jewish News 7 October 2021


David Miller: You’re fired.

A professor obsessed with anti-Jewish conspiracy theories has been fired by the University of Bristol one month after Campaign Against Antisemitism commenced a lawsuit on behalf of current students. Bristol had come under increasing pressure from the Jewish community, which was united in its disgust at Miller’s comments and the University’s drawn-out investigation with no apparent end in sight. Campaign Against Antisemitism has long-pioneered innovative legal solutions, and on behalf of students

we brought a claim against the University for creating a hostile environment for Jews through its continuing failure to hold Miller accountable, and for itself breaching the diversity and inclusion terms of its contract with students. Following the launch of our proceedings, the University of Bristol knew that, whatever its internal investigation might find, the facts would be placed before a court. Just a month later, Miller was fired. The case is the latest step by Campaign Against Antisemitism to defend the rights of individual Jewish students. We believe that universities and students’ unions must be robustly held to account when they fail to defend Jewish students or allow their staff to discriminate against and harass Jews.


Labour: It’s too soon to celebrate.

Keir Starmer believes that he has “closed the door” on Labour antisemitism, but his selfcongratulation is premature. Labour has now approved a semiindependent disciplinary process, as mandated by the EHRC following its investigation in which Campaign Against Antisemitism was the complainant.

Far from being the end of the matter, now comes the real challenge of purging racists and their enablers and delivering justice for the Jewish community by applying the new disciplinary process, investigating our complaints against Jeremy Corbyn, Angela Rayner and others, and encouraging a major culture change in a Party that — as Labour’s annual conference last week showed once again — remains obsessed with Jews and the Jewish state. Waging a public relations campaign and actually fighting antisemitism are two different things. Sir Keir spent Labour conference showcasing his ability to do the former, but it is a year since the EHRC published its report and only now have the rules been changed. Campaign Against Antisemitism will continue to hold his Party — and all political parties — to account.

We will always do whatever it takes to defend British Jews. Support us at Justice, justice, you shall pursue | ‫ | צדק צדק תרדף‬Charity reg. 1163790 | PO Box 2647, London W1A 3RB




7 October 2021

1 Cheshvan 5782

Issue No.1231


Marathon effort for Jewish charities, pages 24 & 25

The Battle for Bevis Marks won... for now

Plan scrapped for high-rise next to UK’s oldest shul Bevis Marks’ Rabbi Shalom Morris said he was “delighted the The community breathed a collective sigh of relief this week after approval for a 48-storey tower set to be built next to the planning committee had seen sense”. He added: “The very future of Bevis Marks, our cathedral synathe UK’s oldest synagogue was rejected following more than gogue, was at risk. That’s not hyperbole or theatrics. The threat one thousand objections, writes Joshua Salisbury. Bevis Marks in the City of London feared a giant office block is not over yet though as we continue to fight against another at 31 Bury Street – one of two planned developments in the area – nearby planned skyrise development.” Dame Helen Hyde, chair of the Founwould leave the building overshadowed in dation for Jewish Heritage, said: “The darkness. The shul is lit by up to 240 canspecial status of Bevis Marks has been dles and its lighting is constrained because recognised by the planning committee it is a Grade 1-listed building. and common sense has prevailed.” The Spanish and Portuguese synagogue The meeting heard objections from was built in 1701 and was the first shul crelawyer and campaigner Sarah Sackman ated after Jews were allowed back into Engand Rabbi Morris, who raised concerns land by Oliver Cromwell, following their the tower would block out sunlight and banishment 400 years earlier by Edward I. make worship difficult. Councillors this week refused to Sackman writes in this week’s Jewish approve the towering development after News: “Our campaign shows what we can objections were raised across the commuachieve when we come together as a comnity, including from the Chief Rabbi and How the tower block would have looked munity, organise and raise our voices. The historian Sir Simon Schama. battle for Bevis Marks shows our pride in They ruled by 14 votes to seven that the development should not proceed, despite planning officers our Jewish history and our optimism for the future.” A final decision is yet to be reached on plans for a second recommending approval. Planning officer Gwyn Richards said the City had consulted five experts who concluded the change to 21-storey tower in nearby Creechurch Lane.  Editorial comment, p18; Sarah Sackman, p19 lighting levels would be minimal.

The ornate synagogue, lit by 240 candles, was built in 1701 after Jews were readmitted by Oliver Cromwell


Jewish News 7 October 2021

Conservative Party Conference

Boris blasts Corbyn, the ‘corduroy communist’ by Lee Harpin at the Conservative Party Conference in Manchester @lmharpin

Boris Johnson used his speech at the Tory Party conference to say he has the “guts” to bring further revival to the UK after the pandemic – while blasting Jeremy Corbyn as a “corduroy communist cosmonaut” sent “into orbit where he belongs” at the last election. In a speech yesterday that drew both loud applause and laughter from the party faithful in Manchester, the prime minister said he would unleash the “unique spirit” of the country as he set out on the “difficult” process of reshaping the British economy. Defending the need for the health tax hike – to fund a £12 billion annual investment in health and social care – Johnson said: “We have a huge hole in the public finances, we spent £407 billion on Covid support and our debt now stands at over £2 trillion, and waiting lists will almost certainly go up before they come down. “Covid pushed out the great bow wave of cases and people did not or could not

seek help, and that wave is now coming back – a tide of anxiety washing into every A&E and every GP. “Your hip replacement, your mother’s surgery … and this is the priority of the British people.” The rising tax burden caused concern among some Tories, but the prime minister told activists: “I can tell you, Margaret Thatcher would not have ignored the meteorite that has just crashed through the public finances. “She would have wagged her finger and said: ‘More borrowing now is just higher interest rates, and even higher taxes later.’” Johnson also attacked what he called a “hopelessly divided” Labour





















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Foreign secretary Liz Truss told a packed Conservative Friends of Israel (CFI) reception that she would develop a “deeper relationship with Israel” in what she said were “three key areas”. Speaking to a capacity crowd at Manchester’s Midland Hotel, she outlined how trade, technology and security were the areas in which she was looking to expand as part of a “full-fat” post-Brexit deal with Israel. In a promise that delighted attendees of the fringe event, Truss, who is also minister for women and equalities, said: “I have difficult issues in my in-tray as foreign secretary, including stopping Iran becoming a nuclear power.” But the main focus of her talk was to build on her vision of the “network of liberty” the UK wants to build around the world, including with Israel, of which she said “there is no closer friend and ally” to the UK. She praised the involvement of international trade secretary Anne-Marie Trevelyan, who she said was “determined to pursue the trade deal with Israel”. Truss added that EU rules had restricted links before, but said: “The new Israel/UK trade deal will be a full-fat deal from technology to services to agricultural goods. It will be a fantastic trade deal.” Turning to technology, she said: “We want to work with likeminded allies like Israel, which is a huge technological innovator.” The third area of planned growth was with security, said Truss, adding that the “best way to challenge malign actors and authoritarian regimes around the world is through strength and building economic strength” with like-minded nations. Earlier, Israeli ambassador Tzipi Hotovely had sung the praises of those at the CFI reception, saying: “You usually say ‘your heart is in the right place’ – but let me tell you, all your minds are in the right place.” One of the loudest cheers of the evening was for Board of Deputies president Marie van der Zyl, who thanked the party for its support both for the Jewish community and for Israel.

Lee Harpin’s



Party. He said Sir Keir Starmer looked like a “seriously rattled bus conductor” at last week’s conference in Brighton who had been “pushed this way and that by a Corbynista mob”. He also used his 45-minute speech to attempt to spell out what his “levelling up” agenda actually means. “The idea in a nutshell is you will find talent, genius, care, imagination and enthusiasm everywhere in this country, all of them evenly distributed – but opportunity is not,” he said. The prime minister said Team GB’s second place in the Paralympics medal table demonstrated a country that was “proud to be a trailblazer” and “to judge people not by where they come from but by their spirit, what is inside them”.





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conference ● HOTOVELY FOR PM?

Israeli ambassador Tzipi Hotovely proved to be quite a hit with senior Conservative figures during her visit to the party conference. So much so that Stephen Crabb MP, the Conservative Friends of Israel parliamentary chair and former minister, jokingly suggested that if she wanted to give it a go she could even challenge Boris Johnson for the top job.

SELF-HELP Meanwhile, Hotovely wasted no time at a fringe event, waving away an offer by a communal figure, who shall remain nameless, of being introduced to MPs at the conference. The ambassador pointed out that if she needed help with introductions she could always ask the prime minister or those around him for help.

GHETTO SLOT Jewish attendees at the conference were left in a bit of a quandary on Tuesday afternoon, when no fewer than three fringe events covering antisemitism and online hate were scheduled for the same 3.30pm start time. One Conservative figure was overheard apologising, saying: “They seem to think they can get all the nonEnglish sessions over in an hour.”

SWEEPING THE BOARD It was lucky that the Board of Deputies turned out in force again for the Conservative

Our Lee, pictured right, with the Board’s Phil Rosenberg and MP Christian Wakeford

Conference in Manchester, as they had done last week in Brighton for Labour’s event. With three fringe events on at the same time on Tuesday, the Board’s Daniel Sugarman did one, president Marie van der Zyl another – while the fantastically down-to-earth and approachable new chief exec Michael Weiger went off to observe another.


And look who posed for a picture (left) before Jewish News ventured back to its hotel room on Tuesday night. Additionally, Bury South MP Christian Wakeford, the Board’s comms director Phil Rosenberg and your diarist were early photographed at the CFI reception (above).


7 October 2021 Jewish News

Conservative Party Conference

Jacob Rees-Mogg has defended religious slaughter including kosher slaughter after LBC radio presenter Iain Dale used a fringe event at the Conservative Party Conference to call for halal meat to be “completely banned, like it is in some other countries”. Jacob Rees-Mogg with fans The leader of the House of Commons was taking part in the had expressed concern about bans TaxPayers’ Alliance Question Time on halal or kosher food, Rees-Mogg event in Manchester when he and said: “I, too, would be reluctant to the other panel members were asked ban halal or kosher slaughter. “I think religious freedom is very if they would support new laws meaning food needed to be labelled important and in a world where reladetailing whether an animal had tions between various religions can sometimes be quite sensitive – the been stunned prior to being killed. Responding to the question from Labour Party has had a particular an audience member, Dale, who issue with antisemtism – one does was chairing Sunday’s session, said: not want to do anything that would “I’ve done a few phone-ins on this. seem to be directed against a parIt seems to me – I’m going to ticular religion. “And yes there’s a balance in alienate some people in the audience now – that halal meat should be animal rights – and it’s a question of completely banned like it is in some really how cruel is it.” An audience member, who did other countries.” After the panellist Kate Andrews not give his name, had mentioned

Gove: Labour unchanged

Michael Gove has claimed that the Labour Party that elected Jeremy Corbyn is the “same party” that elected its current leader, writes Lee Harpin. The communities secretary said it was “undoubtably the case Sir Keir Starmer has sought to efface some of the memory of Corbyn”, and that the “core Corbynite team are marginalised and unhappy”. But he said Starmer had not emerged from last week’s Labour Conference having had the “confrontation with identity politics it needs to before it moves back into the mainstream”. Asked whether Labour has changed, Gove said he would “leave that for others to decide”. Gove, whose new role

New role: Michael Gove

includes the task of pursuing the government’s “levelling up” strategy, said he “did not get the sense” that Labour was in sympathy with the real concerns of working people. Speaking at a Policy Exchange fringe event, he said he believed the public’s full realisation of what Corbyn actually stood for did not happen until after the 2017 general election.

“Some of the things that were said about Corbyn just seemed incredible,” he said. “If you were inside, you knew he had been a supporter of Irish republicanism, his views on security and defence, and on how his views on the Middle East translated into his view on fighting antisemitism at home.” But he said that by 2019 “the evidence was there”, including the way Corbyn “grotesquely manhandled the need to protect Jewish members of his own party”. He said he thought it was “possible for Labour to recover and reconnect” but only after the party had properly confronted the obsession with identity politics.

BOARD LAUNCHES AWARENESS DRIVE The Board of Deputies has launched its first awareness and fundraising campaign. The #WeStandForEveryBODy campaign aims to improve the Jewish community’s understanding of its work and increase the proportion of synagogue members who pay the annual communal contribution, its main source of income. The campaign will run from October to December 2021 on social media and via email. President Marie van der Zyl said: “For too long, the BoD has been one of the Jewish community’s best-kept secrets, working behind the scenes on a wide range of impor-

tant issues that affect us all at some stage of our lives. “We need the community’s support to continue our work so it’s time to come out of the shadows and show everyone what we’ve been doing for the last 260 years – and how they can ensure that work continues.” The Board, which recently celebrated its 260th anniversary, also commissioned two short videos to demonstrate its work. The first explains the BoD’s role and highlights some of its achievements, while the second features some of the people who say they have benefited from the Board’s support.

in his question to the panel that on LBC radio there had recently “been coverage of meat being sold in restaurants, which is halal and kosher – ie animals being slaughtered without stunning... a religious issue. “Yet this meat is not being labelled as non-stunned meat.” On the back of a recent announcement by the government to open a consultation on the labelling processes around meat, the audience member then asked the panel: “Would you support a law that means food is labelled saying whether the animal has been stunned or not?” The New Statesman’s political editor Stephen Bush then said: “I’m not aware, as someone who is Jewish, [that] there is a vast difference between how Muslims kill their food and we kill ours to suggest halal should be banned and kosher food should not.” Bush then argued that it would be a “particularly bad idea to mandate every restaurant that prepared it that way, to do so” because he said it would leave these establishments open to a “violent terrorist threat”.

Support your Jewish community. Support your Jewish News Thank you for helping to make Jewish News the leading source of news and opinion for the UK Jewish community. Unlike other Jewish media, we do not charge for content. That won’t change. Because we are charity-owned and free, we rely on advertising to cover our costs. This vital lifeline, which has dropped in recent years, has fallen further due to coronavirus. Today we’re asking for your invaluable help to continue putting our community first in everything we do. For as little as £5 a month you can help sustain the vital work we do in celebrating and standing up for Jewish life in Britain. Jewish News holds our community together and keeps us connected. Like a synagogue, it’s where people turn to feel part of something bigger. It also proudly shows the rest of Britain the vibrancy and rich culture of modern Jewish life. You can make a quick and easy one-off or monthly contribution of £5, £10, £20 or any other sum you’re comfortable with. 100% of your donation will help us continue celebrating our community, in all its dynamic diversity...

27 May 2020


16 Sivan 5781

Issue No.1212



We’ve never been so focuse d on fighting racism, so wh y the deafen ing silence as antisemitism spirals out of control? • Hospital probes ‘cutt

• Driver with Israeli hroat gesture’ to Jewish patient attacked in Golders Gree • Crucifixion banner flaghuge n pro-Palestini • BBC journalist’s #Hitatlerw an demo • Nearly 300 antisemitic asright tweet revealed


incidents in unde

r 3 weeks H RACISM – THE MADN ESS SPREADS: Pages 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 20, 22 & 23 E

‘It’s okay not to be okay’ BOO KVE DRI





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Journey’s end


David Frost

past,” said Frost, the government’s chief negotiator. “We are very aware of that problem, we are very concerned about it, and we will get it sorted.” In July, Board of Deputies president Marie van der Zyl and Chief Rabbi Ephraim Mirvis met with Belfast Jewish community chairman Michael Black and local Jewish religious leader the Reverend David Kale “to urge the government to take action to avoid the Northern Ireland Protocol potentially ending Jewish life in Belfast”. The protocol row affects the part of the Brexit deal that creates a border in the Irish Sea. Earlier this week Lord Frost threatened to invoke Article 16 of the Northern Ireland Brexit agreement, which would suspend key parts of the Brexit treaty and could see a hard border emerge.

by Lee Harpin at the Conservative Conference in Manchester @lmharpin

Freddie’s century! Charity number

Lord Frost has told Jewish News the government is “very concerned” about the continued problem in getting kosher food to Northern Ireland’s Jewish community as a result of a row with the European Union over the Brexit protocol, writes Lee Harpin. Speaking after Boris Johnson had namechecked him in his leader’s speech at the Tory Party Conference, the Brexit minister confirmed that the government was “doing everything we can” to resolve the problem that has mainly affected the community living in Belfast. “Obviously we are concerned about that – and we will do everything we can to make sure that kosher food and everything else can be supplied into Northern Ireland in the future as it has been in the


Covid cancels Israel tours for second summer Page 10

VOICE 22 April 2021


10 Iyar 5781

Issue No.1207

UK registered

Concern over kosher threat

Beloved survivor ’s 100th birthda y P31


Time to en the divide d •



Landmark revi ew of racism in the Jewish community calls for: • End to racial profi at communal

ling events

• Synagogues to

create ‘welcoming committees ’ ’ to be understood as a racial slur • Sephardi, Mizra songs in Ashk hi and Yemenite enazi • Schools to incre synagogues ase focus colonialism and black histoon ry • ...and Facebook Britain is name group Jewish Jewish Newsd and sham ed

• Word ‘Shvartzer





Commission chair Stephen authored the Bush Board of Deputies September report

6, 7 & 26





Inside Julia’s


unorthodox wardroT: be

YIZKOR – Living with


New Beginnin

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Support Jewish News by visiting our donor page at

THE JACOB FOUNDATION Jewish News is owned by The Jacob Foundation, a registered UK charity promoting cohesion and common ground across the UK Jewish community and between British Jews and wider society. Jewish News promotes these aims by delivering dependable and balanced news reporting and analysis and celebrating the achievements of its vibrant and varied readership. Through the Jacob Foundation, Jewish News acts as a reliable and independent advocate for British Jews and a crucial communication vehicle for other communal charities.


Jewish News 7 October 2021

News / Labour vote / Councillor suspended

JLM ‘dismay’ over Momentum by Lee Harpin @lmharpin

The Jewish Labour Movement has written an angry letter to the Momentum organisation expressing “dismay” that it instructed delegates at Labour’s annual conference to vote against antisemitism complaint rule changes. In a letter to the pro-Jeremy Corbyn group’s leaders, JLM asked to know how Momentum reached its conclusion that the changes adopted by Sir Keir Starmer’s party were a “flawed interpretation” of the instructions that were mandated by the Equality and Human Rights Commission watchdog. The letter also tells Momentum that JLM members have been “especially troubled” by attacks on Jon Lansman, who has become “a

pletely transactional and that you detercentral target” of mined to prioritise undermining the curattacks by “left rent leadership at the expense of the parantisemites”. ty’s legal and moral duties.” Labour’s conIn the ference voted to approve the rule changes, letter penned which will lead to an independent comby national plaints process. But a quarter of delegates chair Mike voted down the proposals. Katz and The JLM letter also reiterates how national secreLansman has been the victim of antisemitic tary Adam Langleben, attacks. “We have been especially troubled Momentum are informed by some of the rhetoric on the left regarding that JLM’s members “were your former chair, Jon Lansman,” it dismayed to read reports states. “He has been a target of left antithat you had instructed semites and much of the abuse has been delegates to vote against clearly antisemitic. We remain dismayed these rule changes”. The Jewish Labour Movement writes about attacks on Lansman, inset Momentum have not called any of this Katz and Langleben add: “Unless you are able to clarify the rea- we can only assume that your commitment out.” Jewish News contacted Momentum for soning behind your instruction to delegates, to fighting antisemitism in the party is com- comment.


helps “ Nike make my

otic Alternative, a report published by the anti-racism charity HOPE Not Hate shows. Private messages allegedly sent by Wills on the Telegram chat space last month state: “My view is Covid is a loss maker for us, we just need to centre on white genocide […] because many of our white race are convinced about vaccines, but not


about our replacement, and need to be informed about this?” Another message posted on 27 of August read: “No more listening to the lies they spread, it’s the day of reckoning for the blood we share!” On 11 June he reportedly posted a message stating: “Trying to infiltrate and influence those in power is our initial best way forward as we

have no chance of political power any time soon, sadly. My view is Tories are best of a rotten lot as still have a right-wing minority who are on on side.” Patriotic Alternative was founded in 2019 by Mark Collett, a former director of publicity for the British National Party. Two blue ticks confirm Wills read Jewish News’ request for a comment

via WhatsApp on Wednesday but chose not to respond. HOPE not Hate said they had also contacted Wills and local Worthing East MP Peter Bottomley for comment. A Conservative Party spokesperson confirmed: “Councillor Tim Wills has been suspended pending the outcome of an investigation.”

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A Conservative councillor has been suspended for allegedly expressing concern about “white genocide” and insisting there is a “right-wing minority (in the party) who are onside” with far-right nationalism, writes Lee Harpin. Tim Wills, a borough councillor in Worthing, appeared to support the racial nationalist group Patri-

7 October 2021 Jewish News


Miller sacked / Assault trial / ‘Jewish’ smear / News

Uni gave Miller ‘free pass’ Former communities secretary Robert Jenrick this week accused Bristol University of giving a “free pass” to antisemitism with its failure to sack Professor David Miller sooner, writes Lee Harpin. He has also revealed that managers at the institution “often didn’t reply” to his letters urging them to carry out a thorough investigation, Speaking at a fringe event at the Conservative Conference in Manchester, Jenrick express concern about the government’s proposed Freedom of Speech Bill, telling the audience: “I certainly don’t want to see a Holocaust denier on a university campus citing a piece of legislation produced by this government.” In one of his first appearances since he was replaced in the cabinet role by Michael Gove, Jenrick drew applause from the audience at Conservative Home’s ‘Countering antisemitism - a front line in the struggle against extremism’ event as he outlined his record of attempting to “root out” anti-Jewish racism. The MP, who is married to an Israeli and whose children are raised as Jews, said he has always tried to attack antisemites “from the public sector and in institutions”.

David Miller ‘did not meet university’s standards’

Reflecting on Bristol University’s decision last week to sack sociology lecturer Miller, following the launch in March of an investigation, Jenrick said: “To think that up to a couple of days ago there was a professor at Bristol University – one of this country’s most reputable institutions – who was spreading conspiracy theories and antisemitism on campus to the very students he was supposed to be protecting. “And the university, who knew this, took months

and months to come to the conclusion that this man had no place on a university campus.” Jenrick then confirmed: “I wrote to the university secretariat repeatedly, and they often didn’t even reply, or they would take weeks or months to send a fob-off response.” The former minister said the fact that Bristol finally acted “shows we need to have concerted action at universities, in councils, in schools and charities across the country”. Miller accused Jewish students of being “pawns of a racist regime engaged in ethnic cleansing. He also claimed Jewish students run a “campaign of censorship” on behalf of the Israeli government and Jewish communal institutions work for the “Israel lobby”. The university released a long-awaited statement following its six-month investigation, saying: “We have a duty of care to all students and the wider university community, in addition to a need to apply our own codes of conduct consistently and with integrity. “A disciplinary hearing found Professor Miller did not meet the standards of behaviour we expect.” • Jenni Frazer and Jeremy Havardi, page 20

Stamford Hill accused trial date set

A man accused of assaulting Jews in Stamford Hill is due to go on trial next year. According to court officials, Abdullah Qureshi, 28, of Dewsbury, West Yorkshire, was remanded in custody and is to stand trial at Stratford Magistrates’ Court on 18 January. Police charged him with assaults, including one count of racially or religiously aggravated wounding or grievous bodily harm and four counts of racially or religiously aggravated common assault. He was also charged with one count of racially or religiously aggravated criminal damage. The charges relate to five incidents on 18 August.

LABOUR SUSPENDS LOCAL CHAIR OVER ‘JEWISH WIFE’ SMEAR Labour has suspended the vice-chair of the Walsall South party pending an investigation into his comments about Keir Starmer’s “Jewish” wife. At the Labour Party conference in Brighton, Nick Dodds said Labour had HALF PAGE ADVERT 2020:Layout 1 09/01/2020 Suspended: Dodds JAN changed because Starmer’s16:04 “wifePage is 1

Jewish”. The party acted swiftly after Jewish News revealed these remarks, of which it has a recording. Dodds also complained that Starmer was surrounded by too many advisers who are Jewish. Dodds’ wife, Val, had been the first to attempt to disrupt Starmer’s speech last

Wednesday. Dodds was informed last Thursday that he had been suspended ahead of an investigation. A Labour spokesperson said: “The Labour Party takes all complaints of antisemitism extremely seriously and they are fully investigated in line with

our rules and procedures, and any appropriate disciplinary action is taken.” The Jewish Labour Movement’s Mike Katz said: “It shows that, despite the tremendous progress made in Brighton, there is still much to do to truly stamp out anti-Jewish racism in the party.”

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Jewish News 7 October 2021

Special Report / AJR: Connecting Next Generations

Two-day AJR event bridges generations


Photos by Adam Soller Photography

by JenniFrazer @JenniFrazer

Hundreds of people have taken part both in person and online in an international two-day conference, under the auspices of the Association of Jewish Refugees (AJR), writes Jenni Frazer. The focus of last weekend’s event was ‘Connecting Next Generations’, through politics, culture, legacy and literature. The meeting, at Chelsea Football Club, was sponsored by the Chelsea Foundation and Jewish News. Debra Barnes, an AJR staff member who chaired many of the sessions, runs the My Story book project and now leads work on the charity’s Next Generations initiative. Her mother was a hidden child in France and lost most of her family at Auschwitz. Barnes has written her family story as a novel, The Young Survivors, and tells her

mother’s story for the charity Generation 2 Generation. Many of the conference panellists were telling their stories for the first time. Often the story was the same: their parents, the survivors, had not spoken about their experiences, either at all or until very late in life. In contrast, the Third Generation, the grandchildren of survivors, often had more luck in persuading their family members to talk about what had happened to them during the Holocaust. The Second and Third Generation were encapsulated in an introductory conversation between William Baginsky, the AJR’s Board of Deputies representative, and his daughter, Rabbi Charley, joint chief executive of Liberal Judaism.

The Boys: full online archive is launched Boys, a map of the places Grandchildren of ‘the Boys’ where they were born and – the young Jewish men grew up, and pictures of all and women who arrived in the hostels that housed them Britain after liberation in after their arrival in the UK. 1945 – have put together an The archive is now said online archive about their to be the single best source grandparents’ experiences. of information about the Under the direction of Boys, and can be added to as ’45 Aid Society vice-chair details are discovered. It was Philip Burton, and historical launched in a short film — adviser Rosie Whitehouse, the archive, an ongoing Three of the Boys recently reunited Introducing the Archive of the Boys — which was shown research project, gives details of the birthplaces of the Boys, their journeys at the Connecting Next Generations two-day to the UK, the hostels where they stayed after conference on Sunday and Monday. Angela Cohen, chair of the ’45 Aid Society, their initial few months in Windermere, in the Lake District, and new and often previously said: “After all the months of hard work that unrecorded information about the people who went into the creation of this incredible archive, I’m absolutely delighted with the result. It’s my cared for them. The Boys arrived in Britain in five groups hope it can become a valuable teaching resource, between 1945 and 1948, and a first surprise for enabling children across the UK to learn about the young researchers was that in fact there what the Boys, like my father Moishe Malenicky, were more than 200 girls among the 700-plus suffered during the Holocaust, to ensure it never orphaned survivors. Many of them settled in the happens again.” Zac Greenberg, who worked on the research UK, set up successful businesses, married and had families of their own. Some emigrated to team and is the grandson of one of the Boys, Victor Greenberg, said: “The Boys’ stories don’t Israel, the USA, Canada and elsewhere. The standard work on the young immigrants end with the fact that the Holocaust happened. was Sir Martin Gilbert’s 1996 book, The Boys: They’re more than just Holocaust survivors. “They created a family, established themselves Triumph over Adversity, together with memoirs from a few of them. But little was known about in a country where they knew nobody and didn’t speak the language, so ultimately it’s a story what happened to them after liberation. The new project – the result of research by of resilience and perseverance. It’s incredibly the Third Generation, the grandchildren of the important to share that because people can learn survivors – includes profiles of each one of the from it.”

Fourteen young German and Polish volunteers in the UK are among nearly 200 working across Europe to confront the question of how Nazi ideology flourished. Three of the students, Merrit Jagusch, Sophia Engel and Ricarda Pasch, took part in a panel discussion at the Association of Jewish Refugees (AJR) event on Sunday, moderated by Dr Susanne Frane, the German embassy’s head of culture and education. Frane said: “At a time when populism, aggressive nationalism and antisemitism are creeping back into our societies across the world, the work of the ARSP [Action Reconciliation Service for Peace] volunteers, looking for reconciliation and peace, is more relevant than ever.” ARSP was begun by Protestant Christians in Germany in the 1950s. All three panellists have spent time working with the AJR. Engel, from Unna, near Dortmund, was 19 when she volunteered to work with AJR and its survivors in 2018 and 2019. She had not previously had contact with Jews and said the experience had “opened my heart and my mind”. She believed it was important “for us to share their stories and bear witness”. Pasch, from Minden, near Hanover,

Sophia Engel and Ricarda Pasch

came to Britain in 2018 to work at a reconciliation project at Coventry Cathedral, but the project “fell apart”. However, she had become friends with a survivor in Birmingham and as a result volunteered with AJR, working closely with the Kindertransport group. “I was always astonished that no one judged me because I am from Germany,” she said. She has retained her interest in Judaism and this summer volunteered at a Jewish festival in Krakow. Merrit Jagusch, from Hanover, says her interest in reconciliation began when she read The Diary of Anne Frank. She began volunteering with AJR in 2016/17. Every Thursday she would visit a survivor and the conversation would centre on “English weather and food”. But one day the woman told her story, of being a hidden child, of losing her parents and her brother – and said it was the first time she had been able to talk about her wartime experience.

ELIE WIESEL’S SON: MY DAD’S TWO RED LINES What is it like to grow up as the son of one of the most famous Holocaust survivors? That was the question posed by Dr Stephen Smith, UNESCO chair on genocide education and executive director of the USC Shoah Foundation. Smith, founder of the UK Holocaust Centre, was in conversation with Elisha Wiesel, son of Elie Wiesel, who died in 2016. As Elisha made clear, he is the son of two survivors, but with different attitudes towards

Elisha’s father, Elie Wiesel

their wartime experiences. His mother, Marion, “wanted to put the war behind her and not talk about it ever again”, he said. But to mark

his mother’s 90th birthday last year, he had managed to get a film crew to record her talking about her family’s departure from Vienna, and their moves to Belgium, France and Switzerland, where she remained for the rest of the war. Elie Wiesel had two “red lines” for his son, which Elishah hopes to pass on to his own children. “He insisted that I had to marry someone Jewish and he asked me to say Kaddish for him.”

‘I’m able to be more open’ The problem of communicating between generations was tackled in a concluding discussion at the conference — with panellists Angela Cohen, Hannah Goldstone and David Clark, writes Jenni Frazer. Association of Jewish Refugees trustee Danny Kalman, who chaired the session, is the son of a Kindertransport refugee from Frankfurt who arrived in Britain in 1939 but for years never spoke about his background or his Jewish identity. “I am able to be so much more open about things now,” Kalman said. Angela Cohen is chair of the ’45 Aid Society

and daughter of one of the Boys. But Moishe Malenicky, who lost his entire family in Nazi Europe, died in 2001 without talking much about his experiences. Three years later, Cohen and her family were on holiday in Israel and visited Yad Vashem. To her shock, she discovered testimonials sent by her father in 1975. “It was the first time I knew his mother’s name – I’m named after her – or his father’s name.” Learning such personal details and being able to talk about them years afterwards was “almost cathartic”, she said.

7 October 2021 Jewish News



Jewish News 7 October 2021

News / Pandemic study

Covid ‘catalyst’ for female inclusivity The most detailed study to date of religious life during the pandemic has shown that Covid-19 “served as a catalyst” for new ways to organise religious ritual, including for Orthodox Jewish women and girls, writes Stephen Oryszczuk. Published by researchers at Manchester Metropolitan University and the University of Chester, British Ritual Innovation under Covid-19 covers several faiths and shows how online attendances were higher than in-person audiences pre-pandemic and that worshippers felt uniquely able to “shop around”. Among the case studies – prompted by synagogue closures during the first lockdown – were two female-only online Jewish prayer groups, which started under institutional auspices to celebrate Rosh Chodesh. Gathering for up to 30 minutes to sing the traditional Hebrew liturgy of Hallel [praise] when Rosh Chodesh does not fall on Shabbat, the online gatherings are now “much bigger” than the pre-pandemic groups that had met in-person, with up to 200 participants every session from across the UK. One attendee, who stopped going to synagogue during lockdown, said it was “an act of compassion because it brings in women who were excluded from attendance”. Researcher Katja Stuerzenhofecker said the women’s move online “grew out of a desire to offer a regular ritual event aimed specifically at female members of Orthodox communities in recognition of the additional demands and

The study’s authors say that online scheduling ‘takes into account women’s daily routines’

challenges they face during the pandemic”. Among the many reasons, she said in-person Covid safety measures “made women’s and girls’ marginal positioning in most Orthodox synagogues – often high up on a balcony with bad acoustics and sightlines – even worse than before, increasing their sense of distance”. One of the studied groups meets on Zoom, the other on Facebook. The meetings are recorded and placed online, where they later receive hundreds of views. “The pandemic has served as a catalyst,” said Stuerzenhofecker. “Online delivery is

a significant factor in drawing much larger numbers of participants than similar events did on local premises before the pandemic. “A geographically limited local community is unlikely to include many like-minded women and girls who value female-led prayer. Virtual access is particularly important for members of small Jewish communities outside London where [female] prayer groups are very rare.” She added that online scheduling “takes into account women’s common daily routines, care work and employment – concerns not normally prioritised in mainstream ritual programming”

“Every time I open my own front door, I appreciate what it means to come and go as I please.” That’s Livingness for Claudia. Langdon supports hundreds of adults and young people across the UK with learning disabilities and autism by empowering them to live independently and be their best, true selves. This weekend, help people like Claudia to live their very best lives.

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and that the “interactivity of Zoom, while not perfect for singing together, works well enough for the majority to feel a sense of community”. The report’s authors said people “enjoyed being able to ‘visit’ different churches, mosques or places of worship other than their own”, and online worship “opened doors” for those who did not want to or could not attend in person. Despite the positives, on the whole religious congregants found digital worship to be “less spiritual, less meaningful and, on the whole, less effective”, said researchers. “What that future will look like is still not clear.” Lead researcher Dr Josh Edelman said: “During this crisis people found meaning, stability and community in participating in the rituals of their faith. Digital technology made that possible, even during social distancing, and that’s been a great benefit. But... while there have been some very exciting developments, the sense of community that comes from face-toface gathering is hard to beat.” Alana Vincent, professor of Jewish philosophy, religion and imagination at the University of Chester and researcher on the project, said: “The pandemic has accelerated a move towards digitisation, which was already highly likely, but it has also made people more aware of what cannot be digitised. The challenge for religious communities will be to maintain the good things, such as increased accessibility, while also providing the sense of community and connection that people crave.”

7 October 2021 Jewish News



Jewish News 7 October 2021

News / Crowdfunder effort / Living costs

HET donors raise £1m to secure survivors’ legacies by Josh Salisbury @josh_salisbury

Nearly 3,000 donors have crowdfunded more than £1million to a Holocaust Educational Trust (HET) initiative to ensure the history of the Shoah is never forgotten. Hundreds of HET ‘champions’, including survivors, campaigned for 60 hours to raise the sum from donors as part of the Their Legacy, Our Future campaign. The Trust was supported by well-known figures including Chief Rabbi Ephraim Mirvis, health secretary Sajid Javid and England footballer Mason Mount. Survivor Harry Kessler raised nearly

£4,000 for the appeal. He said: “HET’s outreach work and it’s training of teachers is invaluable in the education of young people and in preparing them to confront hate and racism in the future wherever they meet bigotry and ignorance.” The family of fellow survivor, Harry Spiro, raised more than £16,000, saying: “My dad has always believed good education is the key to combating hatred. This is why the work of the Trust is so vital.” As part of the campaign, the charity produced two new videos, including an animation called Tell Me Your Story and a collection of survivor testimony called Their Legacy, Our Future. Welcoming the fundraising drive,

Chief Rabbi Mirvis said: “The outstanding activities and work of the Holocaust Educational Trust are of critical importance, not just to the Jewish community but to everyone within our society at this time, when sadly levels of antisemitism are increasing.” HET chief executive Karen Pollock said she had been “overwhelmed” by the support shown by donors and added: “We are at a crucial juncture – the Holocaust is moving from living history to memory. “It is our responsibility to ensure education about the Holocaust thrives in a future without our beloved survivors. We must ensure future generations know and learn the lessons of history.”

Clockwise from top: Toby Biber, Josef Perl, Gena Turgel and Harry Bibring in HET’s ‘Their Legacy, Our Future’

‘Perfect storm’ fear as Universal Credit is cut

Certain groups will struggle

A communal advice service has warned the community faces a “perfect storm” going into winter, after the Universal Credit uplift was cut this week. Paperweight says demand for its services had exploded during the pandemic and could increase even further as furlough is withdrawn and the cost of living surges.

The charity’s director of services, Caroline Kahan, warned the withdrawal of the £20 a week uplift would hit the poorest in the community hardest. “It’s really a perfect storm, it’s all happening at once,” she told Jewish News. “To a degree everyone will struggle; it’s going to be a really difficult winter, but there are certain groups of people

who will struggle more than others.” Withdrawal of the uplift, which was brought in at the start of the pandemic, is expected to hit around 4.4 million households, who will see a reduction in their incomes of around £1,000. The charity is seeking to recruit new suitably trained volunteer caseworkers to meet the demand going into next

year and was working “on a skeleton staff ”. she said, adding: “We’re talking about people who live in my street, your street; we’re talking about the whole community.”  For details about Paperweight’s services or about becoming a volunteer caseworker, visit

This weekend, please help us raise £1 million to ensure people with learning disabilities and autism live their best lives. Every donation made this Sunday and Monday will be matched, making your donation twice as valuable to us than any other time of the year. With your generosity we will enable Livingness for people with learning disabilities and autism in the community.

Donate on 10th and 11th October at Registered Charity no. 1142742

7 October 2021 Jewish News


Donation milestone / Rabbinic move / Wiley hosted / News

Life-saver donates blood for 100th time A remarkable member of Cranbrook United Synagogue has hit a century of blood donations – and has no plans to stop there, writes Jack Mendel. Mark Finkletaub, 67, who has given an estimated 12-and-a-half gallons since he began donating in 1972, told Jewish News he considers it “a socially responsible thing to do”. He got started after his uncle encouraged him to do so. “On average, I can give blood around four times a year,” the retired former BT worker said after giving his 100th donation at the YMCA in Walthamstow. “I’m particularly pleased to hit this significant milestone.” Saying he hopes the feat “encourages others to do likewise”, Finkletaub recognised the process has evolved over the years. “Straight after the first time I did it, I cycled from Newbury Park down to Mile End and back with no ill effects! These days, the NHS Blood and Transplant organisation would be telling people to take it quite easy after giving blood.” Finkletaub, who lives in Gants Hill and says he is “happily single”, was involved in the local synagogue for 20

Mark Finkletaub during his milestone donation. Inset: His 1972 certificate

years and his mother was the membership secretary for Ilford Ajex (Association of Jewish ex-Servicemen and Women) ladies’ section.

‘DISGUST’ AFTER DISGRACED WILEY’S CLUB PERFORMANCE Disgraced grime artist Wiley performed at a nightclub in Preston last Saturday, despite the venue having been urged to cancel his performance, writes Jack Mendel. The rapper, who was banned from social media and lost his recording deal over a series of virulent antisemitic posts and videos last year, appeared at Switch in Preston during the University of Central Lancashire’s (UCLan) freshers’ week. On its Facebook page, the nightclub wrote: “O.M.G Wiley tonight was on [fire emojis]”. Last month Wiley, whose real name is Richard Kylea Cowie Jr, was charged with burglery and assault over an incident at the home of former kickboxer Ali Jacko. He was due to appear at Thames Magistrates’ Court on 27 September but did not attend. The district judge issued a warrant to arrest and bring him to court. In July last year, Wiley engaged in days of online hate, during which he accused Jewish people of being “racist” “cowards” and “snakes”, and asked if it was antisemitic “to say Jewish people have power”. The Union of Jewish Students (UJS) said: “It is appalling Switch Preston decided to go ahead with this event, despite outrage from Jewish students over Wiley’s previous antisemitic comments. “The club was fully aware of Wiley’s antisemitic conduct, yet arrogantly decided to host this event regardless.” In a statement before the event, UCLan said neither the students’ union nor the university was involved in organising the event, adding: “We condemn all forms of antisem-

Rapper Wiley performed at the Switch nightclub in Preston last weekend

itism and given the previous actions of Wiley, which include a series of antisemitic social media posts, we strongly encourage Switch to cancel this event and reconsider any further ties with Wiley and his management.” The National Union of Students said: “The decision of Switch to host Wiley, who last year posted a number of antisemitic tweets and spread hateful conspiracy theories about Jewish power and control, is disgraceful and sends a message that antisemitism can be tolerated.”

Rabbinic couple to move back to Israel The long-standing rabbinic couple at Chigwell and Hainault United Syangogue (US) will stand down next year to retire to Israel. Rabbi Baruch and Rebbetzin Nechama Davis plan to retire next July and join family in Israel, after nearly 25 years at the synagogue. The couple met and married in Israel, having made aliyah from England and South Africa respectively, and say they “still feel very ideologically motivated to live in Eretz Yisrael”. In a message to the synagogue’s congregation, Davis said: “For us personally, being separated from my mother, four of our sons, our three daughters-in-law and all of our grandchildren has become increasingly difficult, as we are sure you can all imagine. Covid has certainly made it harder, with travel between here and Israel so severely curtailed.” He added: “It has been such an amazing ‘journey’ getting to know so many of you, and we will miss you all more than words can tell.” A series of events will now be held so the couple can say goodbye “slowly,” while the US will now

Rabbi Baruch and RebbetzIn Nechama pictured in 2017

move to recruit a new senior rabbinic couple. The US chief executive Steven Wilson said: “We are delighted for Rabbi and Rebbetzen Davis that they’re able to make aliyah to be with their family, but we know we’re losing a beloved rabbinic couple and respected colleagues. “Their impact, not just in their shul but the wider Essex area and the Jewish community at large, has been immense and they will be sorely missed. And on a personal note, both Rabbi and Rebbetzen Davis have been a great support to me in my time as chief executive and I will miss their friendship and wise counsel.”


Jewish News 7 October 2021

News / School rating / Corbyn criticised / Jewish Care awards

Strictly-Orthodox school taken to task by Ofsted A strictly-Orthodox school is failing to meet standards partly because it is committed to not teaching children about same-sex relationships, an Ofsted inspection has found, writes Joshua Salisbury. Inspectors also found that “standards of literacy were poor” at the 641-pupil Talmud Torah Machzikei Hadass School in Hackney, which impacted on pupils’ ability to learn other subjects. However, inspectors said that the school, which is rated ‘inadequate’ and caters to boys aged three to 16, had attempted to make improvements since being handed the worst possible rating in January 2020. In a follow-up inspection published this week, Ofsted found: “Some subjects do not have curriculum plans in place that are at least as ambitious as the national curriculum, such as history and physical education. Some subjects are not taught regularly enough.” Inspectors said that “the teaching of early reading in English did not start early enough”, while “in some subjects, such as mathematics, planning was haphazard”. Previous visits found that pupils “were respectful of others”, but that the curriculum ignored the existence of same-sex relationships or gender reassignment. “Leaders are absolutely clear that they continue to have no intention of referencing same-sex relationships and gender reassignment with pupils,” found the follow-up inspection. However, improvements in the secular curriculum were noted by Ofsted, particularly in relation to English literacy since the January 2020 inspection. Some subject plans have been rewritten to bring them in

The Talmud Torah Machzikei Hadass School in Hackney

line with the national curriculum, inspectors found, while maths and English teaching had improved. “Overall, the journey to improve the secular curriculum is well under way. Leaders know there is a lot of work to do, and they are committed to doing it,” the inspection stated. The unannounced monitoring visit was carried out with the purpose of advising “the secretary of state for education about the school’s suitability for continued registration as an independent school”.

Corbyn speaks at rally next to suspended activist Jeremy Corbyn delivno longer stay in ered a speech at a the party. After rally on Sunday the article was marking the published, the 85th anniverfour sent a sary of Cable statement to Street aided by local members a Labour activist describing the suspended last year article as taking for criticising his Jeremy Corbyn an “inaccurate MP’s efforts to try and factionally to improve relations with the motivated position on Jewish community. antisemitism, which was used Labour members from in order to attack and seriously Liverpool expressed dismay undermine Labour’s socialist that Hazuan Hashim was seen programme during the holding a microphone for leadership of Jeremy Corbyn”. Corbyn during his speech. Labour chiefs swiftly Hashim was one of four suspended Hashim, and the members of Liverpool Wave- three others. tree constituency Labour One Liverpool Labour party (CLP) suspended after activist said: “It makes my circulating a letter criti- blood boil seeing Jeremy cising local MP Paula Barker Corbyn give a speech at an for her article in the Jewish event that is meant to show Telegraph expressing a wish solidarity with British Jews, to patch up relations with alongside someone who the community after the has actively tried to harm breakdown of relations under relations with the local Jewish Corbyn. community in Liverpool.” Barker wrote it was “deeply The Jewish Labour regrettable” her predecessor Movement expressed upset at Luciana Berger felt she could not being invited to the event.

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Edgware and Elstree and Borehamwood Masorti synagogues will merge, it has been announced. The decision was approved at meetings of both communities on Monday night and will formally take place on 20 December. An inaugural Council, which will agree the name of the new community, will be elected before this date. The council will then look for a suitable building nearer to Borehamwood,

in order to cater for the increasing numbers of young Jewish families in the area. Rabbi Danny Newman, appointed the joint rabbi of the two communities, said: “I am delighted that both of the communities I serve have decided to build their futures together and I am excited about what now becomes possible when we bring together the wisdom, experience and resources of EMS with the young families, children and growth potential of EBMC.”

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RODEN AND OBERMAN HONOURED BY JEWISH CARE This year’s Jewish Care Woman of Distinction Award went to Tracy-Ann Oberman (left) for her courageous stand against antisemitism, while food writer Claudia Roden (right) received a Lifetime Achievement Award for her contribution to the Jewish community. These honours and others were handed out during a ceremony at the Institute of Directors.

7 October 2021 Jewish News

Marathon man / JN podcasts / News

JN LAUNCHES NEW PODCAST ON CONSPIRACY THEORIES A new series of podcasts exploring conspiracy theories – featuring leading figures in the UK and America – has been launched by Jewish News. Defining Conspiracism is hosted by journalist Oz Katerji and covers a range of conspiracies from Holocaust denial to anti-vaxxers and flat earthers. The first episode in the three-part series features author and comedian David Baddiel, Lord Robert Winston, deputy director of Hope not Hate Jemma Levene and Nicky Woolf, launch editor of New Statesman America and presenter of the Finding Q podcast. Future guests will include the BBC’s disinformation correspondent Marianna Spring, the Community Security Trust’s Dave Rich, actor Marlon Solomon and Baroness Catherine Heymans, Scotland’s Astronomer Royal. Katerji said: “We live in an era of unfet-

tered access to information, and a consequence of that is it has at times become difficult to discriminate between fact and fiction. “This podcast was created to introduce people to the wider world of conspiracism and its potential for real harm to arm themselves against disinformation.” Producer Justin Cohen said: “The quality of the line-up and the topical nature of the conversation makes this a must-listen beyond the Jewish community – just as Oz’s series exploring post-Corbynism was. We’re delighted to be working with him.” Defining Conspiracism adds to a growing stable of podcasts from this newspaper, including a weekly news panel show every Friday. This week’s episode looks at Bristol University’s probe into David Miller.  You can listen to all our podcasts at

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A blind Israeli marathon runner raised around £5,000 despite having to stop at mile 20 of Sunday’s London event after being knocked over. Father-of-seven Avi Solomon raced the London Marathon – and was sponsored by Jewish News – to raise money for the charity Israel Guide Dog Centre. Solomon, who is blind and uses the assistance of guide dog Nike, had been on track to run the marathon in an impressive three hours. But after colliding with other runners three times, the athlete unfortunately had to be taken to hospital by ambulance, although he has since recovered. “He banged his head very seriously [and] he was taken to hospital by ambulance. We’d like for him to come back and Avi in hospital in London finish it, and he’s said he really and therapy dogs for children wants to come back and finish with autism. it,” said Martin Segal of Israel Money Solomon has raised Guide Dog Centre UK. will go towards a new guide dog for “We’re all very upset about it, someone in Israel. “The dogs but hopefully he’ll try to come become their eyes and ears, and back next year.” With his guide dog Avi has mentioned that since Luckily, Solomon made a quick recovery, and was able to attend a 30th he’s had Nike, his guide dog, his opportunities anniversary event held by the charity at the have blossomed and exploded,” said Segal. Speaking to Jewish News previously, Avi Jewish Museum, as well as a reception hosted said: “I want to shine a light on the fact that by the London Stock Exchange. The charity hopes to hold other events to some people aren’t independent because they celebrate its 30th year, including a charity don’t have seeing dogs, and create much more cycle on tandem bikes in Israel, all to raise awareness for donations to be able to support those people, like I’m lucky to have.” awareness of the importance of guide dogs. The centre provides guide dogs for blind  To donate to Avi’s fundraiser visit: people and for Israel Defense Forces veterans suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder -marathon-team-avi

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Blind runner is taken to hospital



Jewish News 7 October 2021

Special Report / Boxing rabbi

His rivals don’t have a prayer! by Jenni Frazer @JenniFrazer

Talking to Miami’s Rabbi Shlomo Zalman Bregman is a little like a conversation with the Duracell Bunny. Knock him sideways in the discussion, and he pops up, keen to have another go. And the metaphor is appropriate because Bregman has just emerged, semi-triumphant, from his first – and, if his mother has her way, his only – celebrity boxing match. I say “semitriumphant” because two out of the three judges awarded victory to the rabbi’s opponent, a heavyweight actor and community activist called Hazel “the Latin Lover” Roche. One judge in the match, which took place in Miami last Saturday night, declared “The Fighting Rabbi” the winner. At any rate, as Bregman – who is known as Sam – told Jewish News: “My opponent, who I had knocked to the canvas several times, looked shocked when he heard the verdict”. Bregman, 44, was invited by Celebrity Boxing to take part in the three-round skirmish, which operated on a pay-per-view system for would-be supporters. Initially he was

Rabbi Shlomo Zalman Bregman of Miami was “semi-triumphant” in his celebrity boxing match against hard-hitting Hazel Roche

supposed to be up against actor Mark Wahlberg, but film commitments prevented that going ahead. The rabbi has “a very serious kollel background” and obtained semicha, or rabbinical ordination, in parallel with a law degree – he is a member of the Florida State Bar. He also runs a digital media strategy company, Alpha Tribe Media, which specialises in building massive social media followings and communities that accelerate his clients’ influence. Of his decision to accept the challenge, the rabbi said: “I wanted the

public exposure and the networking opportunities it would bring. I do work out regularly, but it gets a bit boring, and I thought this would be something different. And I have been a boxing fan all my life”. His wife and parents came to watch him in the ring, from which he emerged “without any injuries or a single bruise. I wasn’t scared, I just wanted to perform well”. Bregman is aware of critics who felt an Orthodox rabbi in the ring was inappropriate. But he brushes aside

after the match and wore a beanie hat instead of a kippah, so his head would be covered at all times. Unfortunately, as he told Jewish News, he was handicapped by having to wear contact lenses during the fight. “I am very, very short-sighted” Bregman explained, “so I wore lenses and one of them dropped out during the first 15 seconds. The referee asked me if I wanted to stop, but I said no.” Our conversation ends with the effervescent and cheerful Bregman, who is well-known in Florida and beyond for Torah tutorials on YouTube, making blessShlomo pre-fight... ings. The big question now is such criticism. “The what might be vast majority of people the next chalwere positive and felt a ...and in the boxing ring lenge for the “Fighting Rabbi bit of Yiddishe pride in Torah” tutorials on YouTube. what I was doing”. The big question now is what Certainly there can have been few like him in the ring previously: he might be the next challenge for the made a point of praying before and Fighting Rabbi?

7 October 2021 Jewish News


Abraham Accords / News briefs / World News Israel blames Iran for plot against Teddy Sagi Israel has blamed “Iranian terror” for a reported assassination attempt on Teddy Sagi in Cyprus, saying the Israeli billionaire was not targeted personally, and that the failed hit was not a criminal affair. A spokesperson for Naftali Bennett said: “This wasn’t a criminal incident, and businessman Teddy Sagi wasn’t the specific target of the attack.” Cypriot police say all possible motives are being examined.

EU publishes plan to combat antisemitism The EU has published what it calls a strategic plan for combating antisemitism. The 26-page document, released on Tuesday, lists strategies advocated or implemented by various EU bodies. These include adoption of the IHRA definition of antisemitism across the 27-state bloc. Portugal, Ireland and Poland are among the EU states that have not yet adopted the definition.

Emirati visitor to Israel now loves to fast for Yom Kippur An Emirati peace activist has told how he became inspired to fast for Yom Kippur after visiting Israel for the first time this summer, writes Joshua Salisbury. Saoud Saqer, an aerospace engineer from Abu Dhabi, visited Israel in June on a delegation following the signing of the Abraham Accords. He was among a group of young firsttime visitors to Israel from the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain and Morocco as part of the tour organised by non-governmental organisation Israel-Is. The 30-year-old, who is Muslim, left the trip interested in learning more about the Jewish community – and decided to fast for Yom Kippur. “I wanted to go and see the truth,” Saoud said. “I got fed up with the fake media posting things about Israel. I wanted to go and make an impact, to show people the truth. Fasting over yom tov, it was about learning more about the Jewish community.” Yom Kippur fell on a Thursday this year, said Saoud, which also happens to be a holy day for Muslims. “I wanted to see how the experience differed,” he said. “It was a really spiritual experience,

Antisemitic slogans daubed at Auschwitz

Police in Poland are investigating antisemitic vandalism at the AuschwitzBirkenau Memorial and Museum. Spray-painted slogans in English and German, some of them “antisemitic in nature”, were found recently on the museum’s grounds, the institution said in a statement on Tuesday. There were “two references to the Old Testament, often used by antisemites, and denial slogans”, the statement said.

First Temple-era loo found in Jerusalem

Saoud Saqer in Jerusalem in June. He left wanting to know more about Jews

where people shed light on themselves and where people think about their sins. It took me closer to understanding the connections between Judaism and Islam because in Islam we have something similar to it.” His family and friends were understanding of the endeavour, he told Jewish

News. “They were all very supportive, and wanted to hear my feedback.” Now he intends to fast again for Yom Kippur. “There are lots of similarities with Islam, fasting is one of the things we have in common. The experience of fasting is amazing; it gives you a feeling of humility.”

A 2,700-year-old lavatory from the days of the First Temple in Jerusalem has been discovered. Built as a private loo at a time when few could afford such a luxury, it was unveiled to the public at an archaeology conference. Carved from limestone, the WC appears like the modern-day fixture with a hole leading to a septic tank. At the time it was in use, private toilets were only for the wealthy.

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Jewish News 7 October 2021

Special Report / Babyn Yar 80th anniversary

‘Memorial is a place of peace’ by Stephen Oryszczuk

Events and teaching dedicated to the Babyn Yar massacre of 33,771 Jews near Kyiv have taken place across Ukraine, as world leaders flew in to remember the victims on its 80th anniversary. Babyn Yar, as it is now known, is a ravine just outside the capital where, in less than 48 hours at the end of September 1941, many of the city’s Jews were lined up and shot by Nazi soldiers, roughly eight every minute. They had been told that they were being relocated. Families were ordered through the city to the edge of the ravine and shot in the head, causing them to fall on to the bodies of those who had been shot moments earlier. Men, women, and children were all killed in what is now thought to be the largest single massacre in the history of the Holocaust. In the following months, other minorities such as Roma were killed there as well, almost 200,000 in all. With presidential backing, Ukraine has A visitor to the installation Crystal Wall of Crying, in memory of the massacre at Babyn Yar

Ukrainian president Volodymyr Zelensky with his Israeli counterpart Isaac Herzog

held two weeks of events including exhibitions, book presentations, poem readings, an international academic conference and documentary film premieres. Hundreds marched the route taken by the victims, while in classrooms throughout the country last week there was a special one-day lesson on the massacre. Education is seen as key, say Jewish leaders, because according to the latest research, almost half of all Ukrainians do not know where Babyn Yar is. “What should have become a place of memory has become a place of oblivion,” said a spokesman for the new £75million Babyn

Yar Holocaust Memorial Centre (BYHMC), which is being built on the site, alongside a synagogue. Ukrainian president Volodymyr Zelensky said: “As Europe’s largest mass grave, Babyn Yar represents unimaginable destruction.” He added that the new centre “will become a place of peace, reflection and tranquillity”. A memorial art installation called Crystal Wall of Crying, by conceptual and performance artist Marina Abramović, was presented to mark the 80-year anniversary, while a new documentary film, Babyn Yar. Context, by Ukrainian director Serhiy Loznytsia, had its premiere. The film was given the prestigious

Golden Eye award at the Cannes film festival this summer. The presidents of Germany, Israel and Albania attended a ceremony with Zelensky, while across the city exhibitions opened, including one called Exclusion Zone by Jonathan Littell and Antoine d’Agata, which was displayed not in a museum but in one of Kyiv’s busy underground Metro stations. “We are building a memorial, which we hope will become a part of the world’s cultural heritage,” said BYHMC chief executive Max Yakover. “The most important thing is that we bring back the memory of this place, the memory of the victims.” Among the more important initiatives was the National Memory Lesson, with a 120-page teaching resource, which was made available last week, together with an interactive platform, although educators say they hope that schoolchildren will visit in person. Ukrainian-born Natan Sharansky, the former chairman of the Jewish Agency who now chairs the BYHMC, said Babyn Yar was “a place that was whispered among Jews” in the 1950s and 1960s, during the height of the Soviet regime. Mark Green, a retired US ambassador who now heads the Woodrow Wilson International Centre for Scholars, described Babyn Yar as “a stepping stone on the way to genocide”, but said it “also stands as a symbol of erasure, of forgetting what happened, when history is made to serve political agendas”. A BYHMC spokesman said the centre was “in the process of becoming one of the world’s largest Holocaust complexes” and had “already uncovered numerous new details, such as the names of many of the victims, the Nazi units involved, and how both the Germans and the Soviet Union tried to cover it up over the years”.

‘THIS WAS LOST TO HISTORY FOR 50 YEARS’ Twenty years ago, Brooklyn-born Yaakov Dov Bleich – the Chief Rabbi of Kyiv and Ukraine – took Pope John Paul II around Babyn Yar, where he prayed. It was a historic visit that took both diplomacy and chutzpah to happen. “It was interesting because the Pope was not interested in coming to Babyn Yar,” says Bleich. “It took a kid from Brooklyn quite a bit of creativity to get him there.” The difficulties were many, he recalled, not least that Ukraine is an Orthodox country, while the Pope is head of the Catholic Church. One of European Jewry’s biggest characters, Bleich has lived in Ukraine since 1990 and never knowingly ignored an elephant in a room. During the pontiff ’s visit, he famously said: “Give us back our children [who died in the Holocaust].” Pope John Paul’s visit “definitely made an impact”, he says. Around the world, newspapers carried only photos of him and Bleich – a visibly Orthodox rabbi. Yet for a long time, the massacre was either hushed up, or used as a political football. “I first went to Babyn Yar in September 1990. About 15,000 people were there. I remember most the politicians, who got up and politicised on the ashes and the bones

of the Jewish people. It really to do was take a picture taken upset me. by a German officer in 1941 “You had Ukrainian and work out the exact nationalists saying, spot where Jews were ‘Communists were gathered, where their complicit with Nazis,’ clothing was taken, and then Communists where they were shot.” saying ‘We were the Bleich has been ones who beat the to the site “hundreds fascists, not you.’ of times” with world That’s not what it’s leaders, including about. Come to respect presidents and prime the people killed here. ministers of Israel, and It was very disturbing. influential Jewish figures From then on we decided to such as Edgar Bronfman, have a separate day just for the long-time president of the Jewish community.” Rabbi Yaakov World Jewish Congress, and Bleich says there was a halfDov Bleich Holocaust survivor Elie Wiesel, century of enforced Soviet yet he is still learning about it. silence; the editor of a newspaper who pub“There are many ravines at Babyn Yar. lished a poem about Babyn Yar was fired. Only this summer, after I took the new two“The Soviets suppressed the memory hour tour with historians, did I finally hear for 50 years. The loss of 50 years in his- details of what took place where, what did tory is a tremendous loss. For the past six things look like, where were the bodies, how years, the Babyn Yar Holocaust Memorial did the PoW [prisoners of war] dig them up Centre has been trying to retrieve and rec- the following year [to burn them, trying to reate the information we lost. They’ve done destroy evidence].” a phenomenal job. What the centre does, says Bleich, is “bring “One of the greatest things they were able that issue that has been lying dormant for 80

years to the forefront”, and let people see it, study it and have access to it. “You have the synagogue now, a place for people to pray. You have these art installations, which make people think. You also have audio playing, including the names of people killed there. It’s a place to come, for schoolchildren to come.” On Ukrainian education, Bleich says the country had “a very difficult” 20th century, so both schools and authorities “chose to ignore” the massacre, adding that there was no monument to Jews at the site until 1991. Rebuilding and educating is the challenge now, he says. “I foresee in the future a museum and centre at Babyn Yar that will be visited by schoolchildren from around the country. “Our job is to get them through the door. Our challenge, once they’re inside, is how do we interest them in what really happened in their own land? “Ultimately, this is Ukrainian history, it’s not just Jewish history. Jews were part of Ukrainian society for 1,000 years and a good part of that society was wiped out. “It’s the job of the next generation to memorialise that, internalise that, and pass that message on, when there will be no survivors to tell the story.”

7 October 2021 Jewish News


Halle anniversary / Chaplin premiere / Dutch names / Russian films / Diaspora News

Berlin Jews mark Halle attack, two years on Young Jews in Berlin have marked the two-year anniversary of the Yom Kippur attack on a synagogue in the German city of Halle by hosting a series of events with other communities hit by far-right attacks. One of the organisers of the new Festival of Resilience, which focuses of communal bridge-building, is a rabbi who runs Base Hillel Deutschland, an organisation for young Jews in the German capital. Rabbi Rebecca Blady, who was praying in the Halle synagogue in 2019 when the attack took place, said: “We want to build coalitions. We want to share stories.” The gunman, a 27-year-old neo-Nazi, tried unsuccessfully to break down the door of the synagogue. When he could not, he shot and killed two people on the street and is serving a life sentence in prison. Blady said she wanted to put Judaism “at the centre” of the commemoration and work with other communities impacted by extremism and decided to structure the festival around Succot. She added: “In the succah, we stand in an actualised symbol of our protection with symbolic fruits and plants to remind us of the goodness of the world.” This year, the festival began on 19 September with a succah-building day, and closed on Wednesday, after a ceremony in which survivors of far-right extremism and their relatives were invited to speak. This included the survivor of a 1992

The community hosted events including survivors of far-right extremism

deadly arson attack targeting a Turkish family and the mother of a victim of the anti-immigrant shooting in Hanau months after the Halle attack. Marina Yudborovsky, chief executive of Genesis Philanthropy Group, which supports the initiative, said the festival was “a bright example of the healing power of the community, where people are welcome to share their experiences and can find support, understanding and strength to look into the future with more confidence”. She added: “Such heartbreaking and

thought-provoking stories of survival and resilience have always been an important part of Jewish heritage, while remembering and building on them together are the corner stones of Jewish identity and community building.” Halle shooting survivor Anastassia Pletoukhina said: “Last year was painful and healing at the same time, because we were in the middle of the trial [of the gunman]. Everything was on the surface – emotions, fears, trauma. This year I know we are not alone in this fight.”

Play about Charlie Chaplin premieres

Itzik Feffer, Albert Einstein and Solomon Mikhoels in 1943

A play about how Charlie Chaplin met Soviet Jewish actor and anti-fascist campaigner Solomon Mikhoels in 1943 has premiered in Moscow. Two, by Dmitry Krymov, reimagines the meeting between Chaplin and Mikhoels that took place at the Museum of Moscow, the director describing the American as “the great comedian” and Mikhoels as “the great tragedian”. Mikhoels met the silent movie screen star as well as renowned physicist Albert Einstein and esteemed Soviet Jewish poet Itzik Feffer while raising money from wealthy Jewish donors to fight Nazism.

Jewish names on-trend for Dutch non-Jews Sociologists in Holland say they are stumped as to why so many Dutch parents without Jewish heritage are opting for Jewish names. The prevalence has been linked to the Netherlands’ strong Protestant Christian tradition, with some suggesting that Biblical references may play a part, but others feel it boils down to phonetics – how the name sounds. Among the most common Dutch boys’ names of recent years have been Levi and Ezra, with thousands registered, but alongside the more universally common such as Simon, David, Ruth and Esther, a non-Jewish

parent who spoke to JTA said his children were called Yoaz, Shilon, Netanya, Yael, Lael, Yair and Odelia.

Other names more frequently heard in the Netherlands beyond the country’s 30,000-strong Jewish community are religious names such as Elisheva, Yehuda, Moshe, Baruch, Aron, Boaz and Thirza. Utrecht University sociologist Gerrit Bloothooft said there was no data on why distinctly Jewish names are relatively popular in the Netherlands. “I suspect parents don’t think too much about the Jewish origins of these names, not more than in names like David, Sarah or Judith,” Bloothooft said. “People simply think these are pretty names.”


Your weekly digest of stories from the international press AFGHANISTAN




Zebulon Simantov, who has become known as the ‘last Jew of Afghanistan’, has finally granted his Israel-based former wife a religious divorce – or get – after decades of refusing, because he wants to start a new life in America. He left the country last month, after the Taliban took power, and is reportedly in New York.

Christians and Muslims in Sante Fe have helped members of the local Jewish population remove swastikas daubed on about 200 headstones in the city’s Jewish cemetery, including on those of Holocaust survivors. Jewish leader Horacio Roitman said the vandalism was ‘an act of hatred that cannot go unpunished’.

An exhibition on the world-famous Sarajevo Haggadah, which was made in north-east Spain in about 1350, is to be held in Madrid. While the 670-year-old original is too old and priceless to travel from Bosnia, curators say visitors can still learn its history, having survived the Inquisition, Nazism and crossborder transfers.

A man who killed one person and injured three others in a shooting spree inside a California synagogue just weeks after setting fire to a mosque has been sentenced to life in prison without parole. John T. Earnest, 22, opened fire with an assault rifle at the Chabad of Poway synagogue in April 2019 during Pesach.


America’s “Jewish beer” com- End of 25 years’ production pany is to cease production after 25 years’ inebriating wedding and barmitzvah guests. The owners of He’Brew beer, which launched in San Francisco in 1996, named their final ale ‘Exodus 2021’, aptly brewed with date, pomegranate, fig and grapes. “This is a great time to put a bow on it and have our grand finale,” said founder Jeremy Cowan, who cited long travel times to drum up sales as a reason for closing. “Especially coming out of Covid, when we couldn’t do that, the prospect of being a door-to-door salesman is a lot less compelling, and I feel I’ve accomplished more than I ever imagined possible.” Cowan’s Shmaltz Brewing Company started when a group of friends were sat around making puns while drinking beer, leading to names such as ‘He-Brew’ beer, ‘Genesis Ale’ and ‘Messiah Bold’.

Muscovites get their fix of Jewish films Audiences in Moscow began to get their dose of Jewish films this week, as venues around the Russian capital screened a range of documentaries, movies and short narratives, alongside question and answer sessions with directors. This is the seventh Moscow Jewish Film Festival and among the highlights is a Q&A with Ari Folman, who shot to international fame with his 2008 animated film Waltz with Bashir, based on his memories of the 1982 Lebanon War. Folman’s latest work – another animated film called Where is Anne Frank – takes the teenage diarist’s imaginary friend as the main character. Alongside a stable of well-

known films, including Seth Rogen’s An American Pickle, the festival is also showing three anti-Zionist films, including a contemporary Palestinian work, a Jewish documentary and an archival Soviet picture. “The ideological and practical opposition to Zionist goals is alive and thriving in the US, Europe and, curiously enough, Israel,” said organisers. “As a result, this theme inevitably finds its reflection in cinema… We will try to understand the phenomenon of anti-Zionism and Jewish identity and how they influence the representation of the Jewish people on screen.”


Jewish News 7 October 2021

Editorial comment and letters VOICE OF THE JEWISH NEWS

VBM Day (...victory for Bevis Marks Day) The City of London’s Bevis Marks synagogue has meant so much to so many generations of British Jews – not just Sephardim – going back to the very start of the 18th century. The 320-year-old Grade-I listed building was the first synagogue built after Jews were allowed back into England by Oliver Cromwell. It is today what it has been since 1701 – a living, breathing symbol of the history and heritage of Jewish life in this country. So news this week that planning permission has been rejected for a 48-storey tower block next to this peerless house of prayer comes as a blessed relief. The need to protect our fragile past has never been greater. Recent research by the Centre for Jewish Art at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem found that there are now a total of 3,237 historic synagogues in Europe compared with more than 17,000 before 1939. Some 80 percent have been lost forever. Of these remaining 3,237, a mere 718 still function as shuls today. The threat to Bevis Marks remains, with approval still being sought for a second – albeit smaller – tower in nearby Creechurch Lane. Let’s hope the planning committee again sees sense and decides to preserve and protect one of the capital’s precious jewels, at least for the next 320 years.

Running repairs


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You’ve left me suspicious For the past month, your front the vast majority of our community Fascist Britain? pages have shown a bias towards would still vote Conservative. Did you the Labour Party. In at least two, mention that the Conservative Party’s when you read the article, you new chairman represents one of the largcan see the headline is wrong. est Jewish communities in the country? Your article about Mike Freer’s The one stating that the majority of councils not endorsing IHRA promotion showed a picture of Luciana [the International Holocaust Berger, who was heavily defeated in Remembrance Alliance’s definition 2019. Last week’s edition showed Keir of antisemitism] are ConservativeStarmer welcoming back Louise Ellman. run could have been written to say Is that big news? They both served the is over: the Corbyn nightmare r The picture that says e Ellman back to Labou that the majority of councils that had party when Corbyn was leader, with Starmer welcoming Louis passed it were Conservative. Starmer even on the front bench. Last week’s article saying that 60 I’m a Conservative, but feel your paper is not as impartial as it should be. percent of respondents might vote Labour if it It will be interesting to see your front page the kicked out Jeremy Corbyn... again, when you read week of the Conservative conference. the article, only one in seven Conservative voters Richard Martyn, By email are in that category and, even if they did change, EE


BBC’s neo-Nazi thriller Ridley Road Pages 20-21



Shabbat comes in Friday night 6.08pm

Shabbat goes out Saturday night 7.07pm

Sedra: Noach

Actress on life and love Page 23


Hug sameach!

30 September 2021

24 Tishrei 5782

Issue No.1230


Labour Party by Lee Harpin at the Conference in Brighton uk @lmharpin

has said the only promise Dame Louise Ellman Starmer ahead of her made to her by Keir week to rejoin Labour momentous decision this to eradicate antiwas that he would “continue party “a better place”. semitism” and make the at the party’s conferSpeaking to Jewish News Liverpool Riverside ence in Brighton, the former she had been promMP, flatly rejected suggestions to secure her senof Lords ised a place in the House she quit two years ago sational return to the party on antisemitism. over Jeremy Corbyn’s failure been promised anything Ellman said: “I haven’t his mission to eradiexcept that Keir will continue the only promise I have cate antisemitism. That’s to Keir after I made the been given. I did speak I things were changing. decision to return. I felt to was waiting for the party wanted to come back. I I feel that it is on the way change. I’m back because to becoming electable again.” as MP for Liverpool Ellman, who was elected as chair of the transport Riverside in 1997, served a decade, having previselect committee for nearly County Council for Lancashire of leader been ously 16 years. the Labour Party She said she had first joined I wanted to change “because ago years 55 more than The former Labour Friends society for the better”. political beliefs have not of Israel chair said her want her decision to go changed and she did not “all about me”. back into the party to be “I want an anti-racist The 75-year-old added: a society that treats society, a more equal society, is something that has never people more fairly. That Corbyn, Labour became changed for me. Under Now it’s coming back something very different. .” and I want to be part of it absolutely no illusion Ellman said she was under racism had been that the problem with anti-Jewishantisemites in the are still eradicated entirely. “There 2 Continued on page

Sketches & kvetches

For a community not known for sporting prowess, we sure have been running a lot recently. First it was Fun Run, then the Interfaith Fun Run and now the London Marathon. After a year locked in our homes, preparing for the big day was not just an opportunity to do something to improve one’s own health but also to be part of a large-scale event bringing people from all walks of life together while raising money for good causes. Many of those charities have been on the front line during the past 18 months and have suffered from the absence of in-person fundraisers during this time. A huge mazeltov to all those who took part on the course and around the country. Your efforts will help to sustain the facilities that make our community such a shining beacon in tough times every single day.


Miriam’s memories

“I know I’m not meant to drive on Shabbat, Rabbi, but I’ve been in this queue since Thursday!”

BEVIS MARKS’ HISTORY MUST BE THE PRIORITY I am deeply saddened by the news that Bevis Marks, the UK’s oldest synagogue and a grade I-listed building, is at risk of closure. While not Sephardi, I do recognise the importance of a building of historic worth (it was opened in 1701) and value to the Jewish and wider community. The synagogue – which is the only one in Europe that has held regular services continuously for more than 300 years – says its services are at risk because developers have sought permission to a 21-storey building and a 48-floor tower nearby. This, the synagogue says, will block out nearly all its sunlight except for one hour a day and affect the ambience; more importantly, its foundations might even be at risk. The synagogue is still in use for services, and is visited by tourists and receives charitable grants in recognition of its heritage. It has also undergone – and is still undergoing – huge renovations. I am pleased that the tower block was rejected by councillors and hope that the 21-storey building will be similarly rejected, with the decision being confirmed by the City of London. Susan Phillips, By email

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7 October 2021 Jewish News

Editorial comment and letters

LABOUR LOOKS OY! MARGOLYES FRIENDLIER NOW THE ROLE MODEL I’m a former Labour Party member who quit for obvious reasons in 2017. I contemplated attending last week’s conference in Brighton – despite having left, I still get an email inviting me – but concluded that while the leadership may have changed, the rank and file had not sufficiently changed to make it a welcoming place. Reading your coverage of the conference, I was struck by the change of mood, capped by Louise Ellman’s return to the fold. I may follow suit. E Rowman, By email

Why put Miriam Margolyes on the front page of your newspaper? Her book is on offer at Costco for under £10. In an interview in The Times, she is quoted speaking about sex in great detail. I am saddened and disgusted that she is held up as an example to women. Let’s see and read about better role models than this person, who it seems seeks to make a living from sharing memories that should be kept well and truly private. Maureen Feldman, By email

Essential project

Puntastic news

It was heart-warming to read your story about young children meeting Holocaust survivors (Jewish News, 23 September). What an interesting and important project organised by March of the Living UK, one that will have a reach far beyond the immediate one of giving pleasure to the older generation. It has never been more important to record the past to preserve the safety of the future. Frances Conway, By email

I loved your front-page headline (‘Hug sameach!’, Jewish News 30 September 2021). It almost beats ‘Mazeltov, Simantov’ of a few weeks ago. With so much negative news around at the moment, and what sometimes feel like an endless stream of antisemitism and strife reported on every week – and not only in the Jewish press – it was nice to read a paper that brought a smile to my face. Hayley Tontovich, By email


WEEKLY SINGLES NETWORK GATHERING Members of the community are invited to participate and network in a weekly singles gathering to be held: Place:

Host: Ner Yisrael Community 9 The Crest, Hendon, London NW4 2HY

Dates & Times

Every Sunday at 11.00 am (over 4 weeks) 10 October to 31 October inclusive


Networking opportunities, relationship development and general personal empowerment


An introductory, interactive talk in communication, motivation, confidence, dealing with vulnerability and isolation, networking, character development


Chayim Lubin: 020 8201 9515 (10.00 – 17.00)

No appointment or pre-booking required. Light Refreshments. The singles group is a pilot project and will be potentially extended subject to demand

This was a great win but our campaign isn’t over SARAH SACKMAN


n Tuesday good sense prevailed as City of the London planners refused planning permission for a 48-storey office skyscraper that would have loomed over Britain’s oldest and most iconic synagogue, Bevis Marks. It takes a special place to mobilise a coalition of thousands of objectors that included Sephardi and Ashkenazi Jews, secular and orthodox, heritage and architecture experts and hundreds of non-Jewish allies. Over the past year, we have come together to raise our voices about the need to preserve the integrity of the Grade I listed 320-year old Synagogue. And our voices were heard. The result is unprecedented: the City of London never refuses tall buildings. This truly felt like a David and Goliath moment. In a modern, dynamic city there will always be a contest between growth and preservation, between communities and developers; the key to good planning is to get that balance right. For centuries, Bevis Marks, the only non-Christian place of worship in the City, has seen the city to transform around it, from the introduction of cars and tube lines to the shiny glass towers that now dominate the skyline. Change must be embraced if it brings work, prosperity and opportunity to the city.

But that change must respect the historic environment and the people already there. People more than any office block make the city what it is. The problem with the proposal for a tower at Bury Street and another at Creechuch Lane, right up against the synagogue, is they fail to respect that environment. If built, the towers would dominate the synagogue, stealing the skylight which bathes its precious courtyard, snatching the daylight from its glorious interior and degrading its historic setting. The synagogue has withstood lots of change but these towers are the straws that would break the camel’s back. And its not just the synagogue that would be harmed: Historic England, the government’s conservation body, spoke of the high level of harm to the Tower of London and other historic properties. For now, our arguments have won the day. But this has been no ordinary planning battle. It is about more than bricks and mortar. It is, as the City councillors came to realise, about what Bevis Marks means to British Jewry and our place in this city and this country. Bevis Marks is not a museum or a monument but an active synagogue and symbol of Jewish rebirth and of Jewish life in this country. It symbolises the place where, following the readmission of Jews in the 17th century to Britain after centuries of expulsion, Jewish communities reestablished them-


selves and thrived. Whilst so many of the great synagogues of Europe were ravaged by war and congregants murdered, services at Bevis Marks have continued uninterrupted since 1701, even during the Blitz, until today. And whilst the centre of gravity of Jewish communities in London may have shifted away from the inner city, Bevis Marks remains a symbol of survival and hope: a living, breathing sanctuary in the heart of the metropolis that connects us to Jewish history but also to its present and future. It is a particular focal point for the Britain’s Spanish and Portuguese Jewish community. So many of the supporters who spoke out against the application described their personal and emotional connections to the synagogue. This was true for me. My mother’s family is from Gibraltar. Bevis Marks is where my parents were married, where me and my sister were married, where we have celebrated countless chagim and semachot, inspired by the choir and bathed in the beautiful ight of the candelabra. The developer talked up the benefits of

creating a ‘community hall’ in its office block; this sounded laughable when compared with the existing community next door. Tuesday was a great win but there’s little time to celebrate. The campaign to safeguard Bevis Marks is far from over. The developer of the Bury Street scheme can still appeal to the planning minister, Michael Gove and there is another planning application for an office tower at Creechurch Lane which would have even worse impacts and which will be considered before the end of the year. But the decision did feel like a line in the sand, a message that the city’s heritage and the communities that breathe life into it cannot be ignored. As the City consults on its plan for the 2030s, I am hopeful that our campaign will help to ensure that Bevis Marks is safeguarded for future generations. Above all, our campaign shows what we can achieve when we come together as a community. The battle for Bevis Marks shows our pride in our Jewish history and our optimism for our future.


Jewish News 7 October 2021


Did Bristol Uni think Miller’s words simply didn’t matter? JENNI FRAZER


hen the news broke late last week that Bristol University had fired professor David Miller, I have to admit I was shocked. Shocked because, given Bristol’s behaviour over the past several months, I never really believed the university would actually get rid of him. Miller, should anyone have been living under a stone over the past two years, lectured in sociology at Bristol and appeared to enjoy himself, blaming young Jews for the actions of the state of Israel, causing students to feel “unsafe and unprotected” on campus. It’s a long time since I was a student and I can’t imagine what it must have been like to feel so unsafe in Miller’s lectures because of the way he characterised Jewish students through a series of conspiracy theories. Jewish students, claimed Miller, were agents of a malign foreign power – namely Israel. He deplored interfaith contact between Jews and Muslims, including, curiously, the joint making of chicken soup, as a “Trojan horse” for Zionism.

Just think, for a moment, what it could have been like to be 18 years old and to hear that coming out of the mouth of your professor. The truly puzzling thing about Bristol University’s statement confirming Miller’s firing is that there is absolutely no mention of his antisemitic comments – which were clearly in play and which was surely a legitimate reason to sack him. Instead, Bristol took refuge in a series of mealy-mouthed phrases, which were at pains to underline that, following the opinion of a top QC, who had “considered the important issue of academic freedom of expression, Miller’s utterances were “not unlawful”. In that case, why was Bristol firing him? The disciplinary hearing, according to the statement, “found professor Miller did not meet the standards of behaviour we expect from our staff and the university has concluded that professor Miller’s employment should be terminated with immediate effect”. Again, more obfuscating rhubarb. Miller’s behaviour had been attacked by hundreds of academics and the smokescreen of “freedom of speech” was absolutely not the issue.


Bristol, when it had nowhere to go in defence of Miller, briefly suspended him while its investigation took place, and then within a month, to the horror of Jewish students, he was back on campus, teaching. For months, the university refused to answer bona fide journalistic inquiries as to the pace of the investigation, or respond to questions about why Miller was being allowed to teach while the investigation was ongoing. It seemed that the investigation would run on and on in the hope the Jewish community would abandon efforts to make Bristol accountable for Miller’s continued employment. But in August, Campaign Against Antisemitism decided to threaten legal action. It accused Bristol University of unlawful behaviour on the basis of Jewish ethnicity and Judaism, contrary to the Equality Act 2010 and in breaches of contract.

Bristol’s climbdown may have been because the university had run out of road. And it ought to be noted, should we celebrate prematurely, that Miller – as made clear in Bristol’s own statement about his firing – has the right of “internal appeal”. He has already said he is the victim of an attacking Israel lobby and intends to fight his dismissal all the way. I can’t help but wonder about this sordid episode. Miller was not fired because of criticism of Israel, as the BBC suggested. He was fired, surely, because he brought the university into disrepute. Anyone who had said parallel things to, or about, Muslim students, would have been dispatched so fast we could have followed their trajectory like a firework on Bonfire Night. Did Bristol really think that because it was Jews, that what Miller said didn’t matter? Answers, as they say, on a postcard.

Miller was fired for verbally abusing students, not Israel JEREMY HAVARDI AUTHOR & JOURNALIST


as professor David Miller fired by Bristol University because he dared to criticise Israel? Going by some leading headlines last week, that would certainly appear to be the case. The BBC News website stated that Miller was ‘sacked over Israel comments’ before going on to offer a more nuanced discussion of the case against him. According to The National, the paper that supports an independent Scotland, Miller was an academic dismissed because he had ‘faced criticism over comments about Israel’ and there was near identical language in fellow Scottish paper The Daily Record. The Evening Standard covered the Miller story by describing him as an ‘academic who faced criticism over comments about Israel’. Other headlines in left-wing publications offered more of the same. Such lazy and misinformed journalism suggests that Miller was dismissed for comments made about Israel, Zionism or the Israel lobby, tapping into the very conspiracism he was promoting about the nefarious tentacles of the Israel lobby in

academic life. Anyone reading this might be led to believe that a British academic can no longer criticise the Jewish state without facing down a hostile campaign by its supporters. In reality, Miller was fired because of comments he had made about Bristol’s Jewish student body, ones that threatened those students’ well-being and which were therefore grossly unprofessional. He claimed that the Bristol Jewish Society, which was operating ‘under the auspices of the Union of Jewish Students’, was ‘constitutionally bound to (promote) Israel’ and to ‘silence critics of Zionism or the State of Israel on British campuses’. In the first instance, this was an extraordinary case of diversity denial. Jewish undergraduate students were pictured as part of a sinister plot to promote ‘Israeli colonialism’. The university’s Jewish Society was, in effect, an agent for a foreign power, a paid-up member of the ‘Israel first’ club with an agenda to promote an ‘alien’ ideology. He characterised Jews according to a warped ideo-

logical lens of power, conspiracy theory and identity politics, one where Jews and Jewish institutions were part of a noxious industry of Islamophobia and anti-Arab politics that potentially threatened Bristol’s Muslim students. Hence his comment that Zionist campaigning rendered ‘Arab and Muslim students, particularly unsafe’ because Zionism was ‘an endemically anti-Arab and Islamophobic ideology’. Not only were Jews seen as a cog in a dangerous Zionist ideology but as active agents of racism, bigotry and oppression. Miller signalled to Muslim and Arab students that their Jewish counterparts constituted a dangerous threat to their academic freedom and well-being. This attempt to pit one student body against another, to drive a wedge between them at a time of heightened online hatred, is extraordinarily irresponsible and dangerous. It is why Bristol University was justified in declaring that Miller “did not meet the stand-


ards of behaviour” expected of its staff. Of course, in one sense there is a connection with Israel, but it is not the one suggested in the headlines. Miller was not criticising Israel; he was perpetuating grotesque untruths about the Jewish state and its founding ideology, both by claiming that its lobby was shutting down debate on Islamophobia and racism and that Zionism was endemically racist itself. The idea that ‘the Israel lobby’ silences debate and censors academics is an updated version of the Protocols of the Elders of Zion, with its lurid obsessions about Jewish power and control. This conspiracy feeds into wider ones about Jews who actively support Zionism or who merely identify with the Jewish community. For if such students are promoting a racist ideology, it becomes easier to single them out as a threat to campus. When racist lies about Israel are promoted, it is bound to create a hostile environment for Jewish students and to render their campus spaces ‘unsafe’. That is why attacking antisemitism cannot be effective without taking on those who spread malign ideas about Zionism and Israel. It is a vital lesson that academics and journalists would do well to remember.

7 Octoberr 2021 Jewish News








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Jewish News 7 October 2021


Crackpots aren’t keen on minorities they can’t save NICOLE LAMPERT JOURNALIST


n the dark days of the Corbyn years, when the idea of this crackpot becoming prime minister was such a real and terrifying threat that many of us worried about our futures in our country, we were often told that, as a “lifelong anti-racist”, he couldn’t possibly hate Jews. After all, his defenders consistently intoned, his mother was at Cable Street. It seems churlish as a people that has been around for so long to decry cultural appropriation; other worldwide religions have taken our patriarchs and our commandments, for goodness’ sake, and then frequently murdered us for not appreciating their new interpretations of them. Fish and chips are a British national dish, bagels a Sunday brunch staple, while the only chutzpah in non-Jews using

Yiddish is when they frequently pronounce it incorrectly. But last weekend’s 85th commemoration of the Battle of Cable Street seemed like cultural appropriation of the worst kind. Not only was the Jewish Labour Movement – the cultural inheritor of the Jewish socialists who claimed victory in 1936 – not invited, but on stage was Jeremy Corbyn and many of his followers; the very people whose political ascent so frightened the Jews of today. He had the chutzpah to claim to stand as a protector of minorities at an event commemorating the defence of a minority for whom he seems to care so little. In reality, practically the only Jews with whom he has stood shoulder-to-shoulder are those who denounce the Jewish state. He lost the Labour whip because, even now, he refuses to accept the degree of antisemitism he allowed to fester in the party. How dare he pose as a friend to the Jews at this commemoration event.


For British Jews, Cable Street stands as a moment not only of where we fought back against the fascists but – more unusually – when the majority of our neighbours helped us. In reality, the victory was bittersweet. Yes, there was a win of sorts. Despite police support, Oswald Mosley’s Blackshirts were unable to march through the East End streets where many Jewish people lived because of the blockades created by Jews, Irish dockers, communists, trade unionists, socialists and working class people who put themselves in harm’s way. And as a result of the huge fight, in which 73 police officers were injured, a Public Order Act was pushed through Parliament that banned the wearing of political uniforms in public and increased powers to prohibit marches. But the weekend after the Cable Street victory came the Pogrom of Mile End; the worst case of antisemitism in interwar Britain. Enraged by the Cable Street defeat, 10,000 fascists marched through Jewish areas screaming, ‘The Yids, the Yids, we’ve got to get rid of the Yids’. Dozens of Jewish owned shops were looted; one Jewish man who owned a hair salon on Mile End Road was hurled through a shop window together

with a four-year-old girl. The Pogrom of Mile End should be as well known as Cable Street. It isn’t simply because that would destroy the tidy mythology of the Jews being saved by the socialists. But the fact is Cable Street was just one fightback. If you are watching Ridley Road, you’ll see Jews were back fighting fascists in the 1960s, just as they were in the postwar period, just as they are today. Even today there are marches that lead to violence, or the threat of it, against Jewish premises; in the summer, people held placards saying ‘Hitler was right’ and calling for the destruction of Israel. The day after a proPalestinian march during which Corbyn addressed the crowds, some men drove around north London for hours threatening to rape Jewish women. Cable Street has become a legend because there is nothing the far left likes more than to patronise minorities whom they can ride in and save, like white knights on steeds. They aren’t so keen on minorities who don’t need their help. If there was a new Battle of Cable Street, this time in the streets of Golders Green or Stamford Hill, would Corbyn be on our side? And would we really want him there?

Starmer needs empathy and nuance on Israel-Palestine HANNAH WEISFELD DIRECTOR, YACHAD UK


he Labour Party conference was an important moment for the Jewish community. The Board of Deputies erected a succah outside the conference entrance and the Jewish Labour Movement hosted a packed-out fringe event, addressed among others, by Sadiq Khan and Lisa Nandy. Conference passed the recommended Equality and Human Rights Commission rule change to establish an independent complaints process and Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer welcomed back Louise Ellman at the start of his speech, to rapturous applause and a standing ovation. All a welcome change from the Corbyn era. Meanwhile, while Starmer was preparing for his conference speech, a group of masked settlers were attacking a Palestinian village in the South Hebron Hills in the West Bank, destroying cars, injuring livestock and throwing stones, leaving a four-year-old boy with a fractured skull. Three settlers have since been arrested but, given that 91 percent of investigations into ideological crimes committed against Palestinians end without an indictment, arrests don’t

mean much in the West Bank, where Palestinians and Israelis are subject to two completely different and unequal legal systems. The violence is just one example of many that highlight the urgent need for robust international action to bring more than 54 years of occupation to an end. So why, then, was the Labour leadership right to say it would not support a motion passed at conference proposed by Young Labour, that condemned de facto annexation of the West Bank, violence at the Al-Aqsa Mosque and forced displacements from the Sheikh Jarrah in Jerusalem? The leadership was right to reject the motion, not because of the references to apartheid or support for the International Criminal Court investigation and sanctions, but because, at its core, it lacks nuance and empathy. Prevailing wisdom within parts of the Labour-left Palestine solidarity camp seems to be that anything expressing sympathy and


solidarity with Israelis who legitimately fear for their safety and security, or highlights the war crimes to which Israelis have been subject, specifically at the hands of Hamas, means that you are somehow incorrectly portraying the Israel-Palestine conflict as a conflict of equals, and in so doing ‘selling out’ Palestinians. There is a way to express concern and empathy for Israelis and Palestinians and a desire for a solution that addresses the needs of both to live in safety and security, while being clear that it is not a conflict of equals and that policies of occupation must be held to account. The motion passed falls significantly short of that mark and does a disservice to the cause of ensuring that the Labour Party has a fit-forpurpose Israel-Palestine foreign policy. Against the backdrop of ensuring Jews can again call Labour their political home, it is essential the leadership can be more evenhanded in its approach to Israel-Palestine, ensuring debate doesn’t slip into antisemitism. When Starmer stands up at conference and welcomes back Louise Ellman, he wants to be taken seriously. And so, when a motion is put forward like that passed on Monday, which lacks an iota of concern for the lives of Israelis, the leadership has no choice but to reject it out of fear that support for it will be interpreted as fundamental dislike of Israelis. Instead, what you end with is the recorded

speech Starmer gave at the Labour Friends of Israel reception. It may have been a welcome change from a previous party leader who could not bring himself to mutter the word Israel, but, beyond a commitment to a two-state solution, there was no mention of settlements, occupation or a Labour Party pledge to any kind of policy that might help thwart ongoing de facto annexation of the West Bank highlighted in the conference motion. The closest to that was a very vanilla mention of an Israel “recognised within its borders”. It was almost as if Starmer’s speech was an attempt to drown out the unhelpful noise of the motion. Compare his words with the motion passed at the Lib Dem Conference, which had the backing of Layla Moran, the party’s foreign affairs spokeswoman and first MP of Palestinian heritage, which called for a ban on trading with settlements. Until the discourse on Israel-Palestine in parts of the Labour left changes, the UK’s party of opposition will act much like our current government when it comes to IsraelPalestine: robust commitments to two states, human rights, the illegality of occupation with no tangible policy to ensure that any of those things see the light of day. Only with detoxified and sensible language will we see a Labour leadership that is prepared to be brave and bold.

7 Octoberr 2021 Jewish News





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24 Jewish News

7 October 2021

Scene & Be Seen / Community

Marathon effort for great causes 1. A group of six runners formed ‘Team Chai’ in this year’s marathon, raising more than £30,000 so far for Chai Cancer Care. Lucy Ross, who took part in the 26.2 mile challenge with father Robin Silvester, has currently raised £11,983, far exceeding her initial target of £3,000, after her mum was diagnosed with cancer. “Chai has helped me so much to support my emotions and be the best daughter, wife and mother,” she said. Fellow runner, Emma Benjamin, has raised £5,000, and said: “I said never again but have already entered the ballot for next year so we will see…”

And be seen! The latest pictures from social events across the community

2. Sarah Tarzi, Claire Gothelf and Clive Goodman were among the runners braving the marathon for British Emunah, which offers residential and day centres to families in Israel. Sarah said: “When my mum passed away last year, she wished to leave a legacy for charity. I decided to honour her memory and raise funds for Emunah by running the marathon again.” Meanwhile, Claire said she felt “great satisfaction” at running the marathon, with Clive concurring, jokingly adding: “Please shoot me if I ever tell you I’m doing it again.”

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3. Camp Simcha’s six marathon runners collectively raised more than £14,000 with donations still coming in. Matthew Jenkinson, Mike Kingsley, Ben Posen and Richard Samir were all running the marathon for the first time, while Jonny Phillips and Stephen Shapiro had both previously taken on the 26.2 mile challenge, with Jonny running to raise funds for Camp Simcha for an eighth time. He said: “To be running it for the eighth time for such an amazing charity adds purpose to the fun – and it was such a treat to see the Camp Simcha team en route shouting from the sides in the sunshine.” 4. Five runners from Barnet have already raised more than £14,000 for Jewish Care, to go towards support for older people. Runners Alan Giesenow, Jake Norton, Jonathan Wiesbart, Ben Pollock and Leslie Walters all chose to support Jewish Care because of the work it does in the community, with some having close personal links to the help the charity gives. “Knowing I was supporting a great cause and how many people supported and donated to my marathon kept me going after the first half when it got really tough and my headphones powered off,” said Jake.



5. Kisharon’s team of seven runners have raised £20,000 so far, after successfully completing the marathon. Shlomi Rokach, Simon Lazarus, Gavriel Debson, David Wajsman, Yanky Vogel, Levi Degroen and Vic Aboudara all chose to run for the charity to raise vital funds to keep its services going. “When I was a young boy I used to spend weekends helping children with special needs,” said Levi. “Spending that time with them made me realise how vital the support of organisations like Kisharon are for the children and their families.” 6. Jami, the community’s mental health charity, had six runners in the marathon, who have raised more than £25,000. Runners Alice and Charlotte both were supposed to run in 2019 so were training for two years, while fellow runner Ethan is part of the charity’s Young Jami committee. Gabriel raised more than £10,000, while runner Mitch was first introduced to Jami 12 years ago and has been involved on and off ever since. Final runner Jamie won a ballot place – and still chose to raise money for Jami. 7. Norwood had an astonishing 25 supporters in the London Marathon this year, with one, Heather O’Connell, travelling from the United States to run the 26 miles. Heather, who has learning disabilities, chose to run for Norwood because of its holistic services, while sisters Georgia and Sandra Norwood said the service made an “invaluable difference to people’s lives”. Fellow runner Steven Salamon split his fundraising between Norwood and teenage suicide prevention iniatives, after the tragic death of 16-year-old Oli Leigh, who was supported by Norwood at school.


7 October 2021 Jewish News


Community / Scene & Be Seen


Amanda, head of campaigns at Union of Jewish Students (UJS) and Adi, Jewish Agency shlicha to UJS at Warwick University Jewish Society (JSoc) freshers’ fair stall


Faye, UJS campaigns sabbatical officer and Adi at the Bristol JSoc stall at their university’s freshers’ fair with Ed Isaacs, JSoc president


Jodie, UJS’ Jewish enrichment and engagement sabbatical officer, and Noa, Jewish Agency shlicha to UJS at Leeds JSoc freshers’ fair stall



Daniel, Israel engagement sabbatical Officer, at the University of Arts London freshers’ fair stall

26 Jewish News

7 October 2021

Weekend / Interview

‘My mother saved my handing me over to M Michael Havis discovers how being sent to Auschwitz’s notorious ‘Angel of Death’ meant twin brothers Peter and Thomas could evade the gas chambers


hen Peter Somogyi arrived at Auschwitz in July 1944, his mother made an unlikely choice that would save his life – she surrendered him to the infamous ‘Angel of Death’, Josef Mengele. Peter and his twin brother, Thomas, had spent three miserable days in a cattle car with their mother, Erzsebet, and their sister, Alice, riding the rails to the death camp. He recalled: “They threw us out of the cattle car, I saw a lot of German soldiers with guns drawn, and I saw the prisoners and guards already. “And that’s when we lined up, along came Mengele asking for twins, behind him were two other soldiers. “Three times Mengele came around; the first time my mother didn’t say anything, the second time she didn’t say anything, but the third time she said she had twins.” Born into a Jewish family in Pecs, Hungary, the twins spent the early war years safe from the Nazi’s worst excesses, thanks to an uneasy alliance between Hitler and Hungarian regent Miklós Horthy. The 10-year-old twins were even protected from tidings of war by their parents. “The only thing I knew about it was from reading a little bit of the newspaper,” said Peter. “It was a little bit beyond my comprehension.” But life changed overnight when the alliance collapsed and the Nazis occupied Hungary in March 1944. “First of all, my father, Josef, was immediately taken away,” Peter said. “Within a month we had to go into a ghetto, and within two or three months we were put into cattle cars and sent to Auschwitz.” Less than an hour after the boys were separated from their mother, Peter learned that they had seen her – and their sister – for the last time. “The two soldiers behind Mengele grabbed us, put us into an ambulance and drove us into F-Lager in Birkenau,” said Peter. Mengele put one of the older twins, Zvi Spiegel, in charge of the siblings. “And the first thing I asked him was ‘when can I see my mother?’

‘The Angel of Death’ Josef Mengele

Peter Somogyi and his twin brother and, inset, in their younger years

“And he said ‘look outside over there at the chimneys’ and he said ‘that’s where your mother is.’ “Immediately, I knew I would never see her again.” Mengele was nicknamed the ‘Angel of Death’ because of his role at Auschwitz deciding which new arrivals would be killed immediately

and which would be kept alive to work. But he is perhaps most notorious for his deadly experiments on prisoners – unnecessarily amputating their limbs and injecting them with disease. Some witnesses described him performing vivisection without anaesthesia and even sewing

The wider Somogyi family, of whom the only survivors were Peter and Thomas (in black, centre), their father (behind) and their uncle (far left)

people together. Twins were his favourite test subjects. Peter and Thomas were lucky, however. They arrived at Auschwitz late in the war and were mostly subject to blood tests and having their measurements taken. Before they were parted, Erzsebet had advised the boys, who had by then turned 11, to pretend they were only nine, hoping this would ensure the family would be kept together. Mengele was intrigued by boys so young being so big, and also appreciated that they spoke German – a language they had learnt from their nanny. “I was a very lucky one,” said Peter. “We didn’t have the bad experiments that Mengele did at the beginning, but measuring the face, measuring our size, blood-taking, and mostly measuring every part of

the body.” However, although they were alive, they were far from safe. “Every night I went hungry,” remembered Peter. “It was just enough food to keep us alive. We were not starving but I was constantly hungry.” He continued: “One day, I think it was mid-October, another Nazi officer came around and they did a selection. “They selected us, and we were locked into another room, and waited for a truck to take us to the gas chamber. “Except Mengele got wind of it and says ‘No, I will decide when these people will die.’” Peter heard the other officer was sent to the Russian front as punishment. Today, Peter – now aged 88 – is certain he wouldn’t have survived had he not been a twin. “Definitely not,” he said. “I would have been with my mother and my sister, together we would have been in the gas chambers within five minutes after arrival. “My mother, my sister, my grandmother, all my cousins – they were all in the same cattle car. They all perished within an hour.

Peter’s Auschwitz prisoner tattoo

7 October 2021 Jewish News


Interview / Weekend

life – by Mengele’ I would have also if I wouldn’t have been a twin.” But he’s emphatic that Mengele is not the reason for his survival. “He was extremely polite. But you know, behind his politeness were the murders,” said Peter. “He didn’t save my life. He just kept me alive for his own purpose.” When Auschwitz was liberated, the twins began their long journey home. Peter recalled: “We started walking first, sometimes we got trucks, sometimes we got railroad cars, but it was months until we got somewhere. “I don’t know how I survived, really I don’t remember. After liberation we went to Krakow, and every day we walked from house to house, knocked on the door and asked for a slice of bread.” It took three days to reach Auschwitz from Pecs, but the return journey took two-and-a-half months.

Peter estimates that there were once a thousand Jewish children in the town, yet only themselves and one other returned. However, they were not the only survivors in their family. Peter said: “My father survived Dachau and, at first, he didn’t want to come back because he thought everybody was dead. Somehow he found out that his twin boys survived.” The twins never spoke with their father about their experiences and vice versa. But none of them were cowed by their ordeal. Each of them made new lives for themselves, escaping communist Hungary in 1949 with the help of a Zionist organisation and settling in Israel. From there, they moved to Surrey, England, staying for two years before moving to north America. Josef Somogyi remarried in 1947 and lived to be 105, dying in 2003. Peter married a fellow Holocaust survivor, Anna, and the

Peter and Thomas Somogyi with their sister, Alice, and parents

couple have a son and a daughter, four grandchildren and one great-grandchild. Thomas also married and has three children and five grandchildren. Today, Peter lives in Westchester County, New York, while Thomas lives in Toronto, Canada and they still see each other when they can. Both continue to tell their story,

hoping that the memory of the past can prevent history repeating itself. “I hope it never happens again, that’s all I have to say,” said Peter. “It should never happen again.” Mengele escaped to Argentina in 1949 and lived out his days in South America. He drowned aged 67 in 1979. He was never prosecuted for his crimes.

A look

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Madge expresses herself! Pop icon’s book for youngsters Peter and Thomas, sitting centre-left and centre-right respectively, with their children, grandchildren and other members of their family


Jewish News 7 October 2021

Weekend / Entertainment



Miracle Workers: Oregon Trail


Daniel Radcliffe stars as an idealistic 19th Century small town preacher in the new season of Miracle Workers: Oregon Trail, which began this week on Sky Comedy. Created by Simon Rich, Miracle Workers is an anthology series. The first season follows Craig, a low-level angel responsible for handling all of humanity’s prayers, and Eliza, a recent transfer from the Department of Dirt. Their boss,

God, has more or less checked out to focus on his favourite hobbies. To prevent Earth’s destruction, Craig, along with Eliza, must achieve their most impossible miracle to date. In the third series, set in the time of the pioneers of the American West, Reverend Ezekiel Brown (Radcliffe) leads his dying, famine-stricken town to head for a better life on the Oregon Trail, taking in notorious outlaw Benny the Teen (Steve Buscemi) as trailmaster Meanwhile, repressed prairie wife Prudence Aberdeen (fellow returning cast member Geraldine Viswanathan) responds to the freedom of the trail, pulling her away from her wealthy husband Todd.


première production at Yale Repertory Theatre in October 2015 and subsequently won two Tony Awards. The cast includes Cory English, Beverley Klein, Finbar Lynch, Molly Osborne, Peter Polycarpou, Alexandra Silber and Joseph Timms. Indecent runs at The Menier Chocolate Factory until 27 November,

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Moss (Run Sister Run). The series is directed by Pete Travis (Bloodlands) and Geoffrey Enthoven (Children of Love). Chris Stewart from Banijay Rights says: “Marie Antoinette is an extraordinary fresh new take on one of France’s most iconic – and controversial – figures, filled with stunning scenery, fine performances and epic costumes.”


Paris Police 1900 Rising antisemitism is at the fore in a new French historical crime drama starting on BBC Four this week. Paris Police 1900, created by graphic novelist Fabien Nury, is inspired by real-life events and delves into the dark side of the French capital. As rumours spread that Alfred Dreyfus, the notorious Jewish spy, has been released from Devil’s Island, police chief Louis Lepine (played by Marc Barbé) is urgently called out of retirement to restore order in a Paris rocked by anti-Jewish sentiment, violence, riots and misogyny and to top it all, the sudden death of French president Félix Faure. But there’s more trouble ahead following the discovery of a young woman’s torso in a suitcase floating down the Seine, spurring young, ambitious detective Antoine Jouin (Jérémie Laheurte) into action at the heart of the police headquarters.

Louis Theroux


Marie Antoinette BBC Two and iPlayer has acquired Deborah Davis’ historical drama, Marie Antoinette from Banijay Rights. Screenwriter Davis, best known for her Bafta-winning film The Favourite, recreates the story of the incredibly modern and avant-garde young queen who was barely 14 years old when she left Austria to marry the Dauphin of France. Free, independent and feminist ahead of her time, the fearless queen will be played by Emilia Schüle. Davis has teamed up on the eight-part drama with Louise Ironside (The Split), Avril E. Russell (All on a Summer’s Day) and Chloë

A play recounting the controversy over a scandalous Broadway production from a Jewish dramatist is now on at The Menier Chocolate Factory. Paula Vogel’s play Indecent explores the fallout from Sholem Asch’s God of Vengeance, the English translation of which opened in 1923 and resulted in the producer and cast being arrested and convicted on the grounds of obscenity. God of Venegance is set in a Jewish brothel and includes a lesbian scene. When it originally opened in 1907, Orthodox papers dubbed it as “filthy”, “immoral” and “indecent”. Indecent reunites Vogel and director Rebecca Taichman who co-created and directed the original production. The play had its world

Sue Deeks, the BBC’s head of programme acquisition, says: “Paris Police 1900 is a stunningly cinematic look at the darkness beneath the glamour of La Belle Epoque. Historical figures and true events provide a fascinating backdrop to an intriguing murder mystery which will keep viewers gripped to the very end.” Paris Police 1900 begins on Saturday, 9pm, on BBC Four and BBC iPlayer

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7 October 2021 Jewish News


Festival / Weekend

when people who had seen the Francine Wolfisz speaks itshow would wink and give 2021 me a ‘shalom’! I realised to founder Alastair Falk people were really From Ladino love songs to Klezmer blues, children’sinterested musicals toin Jewish about celebrating Jewish modern jazz, Israeli theatre to cockney Yiddish music hall,at stand-up things the Fringe, but comedy to as the Jewish answer to Halloween, something forone place culture he launches thethere isthere was no everyone at TSITSIT – the world’s first Jewish themed thatFringe. collected them all Tsitsit Fringe Festival together.” TSITSIT LONDON PROGRAMME



2021 From Ladino love songs to Klezmer blues, children’s musicals to modern jazz, Israeli theatre to cockney Yiddish music hall, stand-up comedy to the Jewish answer to Halloween, there is something for everyone at TSITSIT – the world’s first Jewish themed Fringe. TSITSIT LONDON PROGRAMME


• Pineapple and Crust | a Cut to 2020 when the OCTOBER 3 theatre double bill | King Alfred Phoenix Theatre | • Comedy@ NW7 Kugelroni | comedy with Mike Capozzola | The NW7 • Comedy@ NW7 Kugelroni | comedy with Mike Capozzola | The NW7 country went into a national “dazzling variety” of Jewish 7.30pm Hub NW7 2HX | 7.30pm Hub NW7 2HX | 7.30pm lockdown and Falk began cultural events launches this OCTOBER 19 OCTOBER 19 OCTOBER 5 OCTOBER 5 • The Bu-Jew | comedythanks with Aaron Levene Alfredinaugural Phoenix • Pineapple and Crust | aruminating again over • The Bu-Jew | comedy with Aaron Levene | King Alfred Phoenix • Pineapple and Crust | a OCTOBER OCTOBER 27 his27idea. week, to| Kingthe theatre double bill | King theatre double bill | King Drama Demons Theatre NW11 7HY | 7.00pm Theatre NW11 7HY | 7.00pm • Meet at The Ark At Eight | King • Meet at The Ark At Eight | King Comic Alfred Phoenix Theatre | Alfred Phoenix Theatre | • Pray it Forward | new comedy with Rachel Creeger | King Alfred • Pray it Forward | new comedy with Rachel Creeger | King Alfred Alfred Phoenix | 11.00am that / 2.00pm Alfred Phoenix | 11.00am / 2.00pm “With the advantage of time Tsitsit Fringe Festival, which of Jerusalem 7.30pm 7.30pm Phoenix Theatre | 8.30pm Phoenix Theatre | 8.30pm • The Rubber Merchants | King Alfred Phoenix Theatre | 7.00pmRachel Creeger • The Rubber Merchants | King Alfred Phoenix Theatre | 7.00pm Comedy NW7 | Donnato Landythink and Katie Price | NW7 Hub | 7.30pm • Comedy @ NW7 | Donna Landy and Katie Price | NW7 Hub | 7.30pm the pandemic gave •me, I @began runsOCTOBER throughout October. OCTOBER 20 OCTOBER 20 6 OCTOBER 6 • Comedy @ NW7 | Rachel Creeger – Ultimate Jewish Mother (with • Comedy @ NW7 | Rachel Creeger – Ultimate Jewish Mother (with Music| King from • Kugelroni | comedy with Mike Capozzolaa | King Alfred Phoenix • The Life of the Great Don Quixote as Written by the Jew Antonio • Kugelroni | comedy with Mike Capozzolaa Alfred Phoenix • The Life of the Great Don Quixote as Written by the Jew Antonio special guest, Eyre) | NW7 Hub | 8.30pm special guest, Pauline Eyre) | NW7 Hub | 8.30pm might be a good thing toPauline try.” More than 40 acts, from music and live Jose da Silva | King Alfred this Phoenix Theatre | 7.00pm Jose da Silva | King Alfred Phoenix Theatre | 7.00pm Theatre | 7.00pm Theatre | 7.00pm Buenos • Comedy@NW7 | Philip Simon Work in Progress | 7.30pm • Jew-O Rama | new Jewish comedy showcase | King Alfred Phoenix • Comedy@NW7 | Philip Simon Work in Progress | 7.30pm • Jew-O Rama | new Jewish comedy showcase | King Alfred Phoenix OCTOBER 28“labour of love” has OCTOBER 28 Achra Night: Who speaking about The culmination of his Kl theatre performances, to comedy, talks and ez • Comedy@ NW7 | Joe Bor The Story of Walter & Herbert | 8.30pm • Comedy@ NW7 | Joe Bor The Story of Walter & Herbert | 8.30pm m er Theatre | 8.30pm Theatre | 8.30pm • Letters from the Affair: Pissarro, Degas and the Dreyfus Affair | • The Rubber Merchants | King Alfred Phoenix Theatre | 7.00pm • Letters from the Affair: Pissarro, Degas and the Dreyfus Affair | • The Rubber Merchants | King Alfred Phoenix Theatre | 7.00pm • Whistle a powerful show aboutFringe the pain of second generation their illustrious • Whistle Says | a powerful show about the pain of second generation Jews Don’t resulted in the launch of| the Tsitsit evenOCTOBER a Jewish Halloween night featuring 10 OCTOBER 10 King Alfred Phoenix Theatre | 9.00 King Alfred Phoenix Theatre | 9.00 memory | Yavneh College Theatre | 8.00pm memory | Yavneh College Theatre | 8.00pm • Buenos Klezmer / Jews in Jazz | a double bill of klezmer and jazz Buenos Klezmer / Jews in Jazz | a double bill of klezmer and jazz OCTOBER 21 OCTOBER 21 Have Demons? comedy• writing Festival this week with a wide array of events. golems galore will on their best show | Toulouse Lautrec Jazz Clubput SE11 4RN | 7.30pm | Toulouse Lautrec Jazz Club SE11 4RN | 7.30pm OCTOBER 30 OCTOBER 30 • ‘If it’s Jewish Enough for You ‘ Cabaret | comedy and music • Surfing the Holyland | An American moves to Tel Aviv, how does she • ‘If it’s Jewish Enough for You ‘ Cabaret | comedy and music • Surfing the Holyland | An American moves to Tel Aviv, how does she There’s plentymusical comedy on the survive? She learns to surf | King Among Alfred Phoenix Theatre survive? She learns to surf | King Alfred Phoenix Theatre | 7.30pm • Keep Kalm 24 October, live his| 7.30pm must-see picks is If It’s Jewish at venues Manchester, • Keep Kalm and Kvetch | affectionate musical comedy on the career onfeaturing and Kvetch | affectionate featuringacross The Comic BardLondon, of Anglo Jewry | Soho Theatre | 7.30pm The Comic Bard of a Anglo Jewrytheatre | Soho Theatre | 7.30pm • Letters from the Affair: Pissarro, Degas and the Dreyfus Affair | • Letters from the Affair: Pissarro, Degas and the Dreyfus Affair | world’s longest serving monarch | King Alfred Phoenix Theatre | world’s longest serving monarch | King Alfred Phoenix Theatre | OCTOBER 14 OCTOBERfrom 14 streamed performance | 7.00pm streamed performance | 7.00pm performance Gamayun Theatre Enough For You, a variety Birmingham, Bournemouth, Plymouth, 8.00pm evening held 8.00pm of ghoulish • Passion Killer | a stand up cabaret on women’s power from Genesis • Passion Killer | a stand up cabaret on women’s power from Genesis • A Dylan a Day | Jonny Brick is a songwriter who attempts to weave • A Dylan a Day | Jonny Brick is a songwriter who attempts to weave OCTOBER 23 OCTOBER 23 to the present day, with internationalSoho star Hadar Galron | 9. 30pm CompanyDylan’s to the present day, with international star Hadar Galron | 9. 30pm culture to enjoy of classic Israeli comedy this Sunday, 10 October, in the iconic Dover,Dylan’s Cambridge, Bristol and Edinburgh. life and work into an hour of song | NW7 Hub | 7.00pm life and work into an hour of song | NW7 Hub | 7.00pm • The Rosen One | stand up comedy with Hannah Rosen | King Alfred • The Rosen One | stand up comedy with Hannah Rosen | King Alfred OCTOBER 16 OCTOBER 16 Phoenix Theatre | 8.00pm Theatre, which wasOCTOBER Phoenix Theatre | 8.00pm 31 OCTOBER 31 with theatre, The Rubber Merchants, from 25 to formerly Dean Street The month-long festival is the brainchild • Demons of Jerusalem | a tale of political intrigue in 1920s Jerusalem • Daphna Baram Unmuted | more stand up fresh from the Edinburgh • Sitra Achra Night: the Jewish answer to Halloween | Dance, music, • Demons of Jerusalem | a tale of political intrigue in 1920s Jerusalem • Daphna Baram Unmuted | more stand up fresh from the Edinburgh • Sitra Achra Night: the Jewish answer to Halloween | Dance, music, Fringe | King Alfred Phoenix Theatre | 9.00pm Fringe | King Alfred Phoenix Theatre | 9.00pm lm| The Jewish Museum | 7.30pm and half-term Synagogue. – world premiere | Kinga Alfred Phoenix Theatre | 8.30pm – world premiere | King Alfred Phoenixfun Theatrefor | 8.30pm of Alastair Falk, former headteacher and comedy and Yiddish Punch & Judy | The Jewish Museum | 7.30pm 28 October comedy andmusic, Yiddish Punch &fi Judy OCTOBER 24 OCTOBER 17 of Limmud, who is no stranger OCTOBER 17 PJ Library storytelling OCTOBER 24 and a Yiddish youngsters with Featured on the bill are Britain’s Got Talent co-founder • The Minyannaires | poetry with six fabulous female poets | Temple • Life Traveller | an interactive dance performance on migration and • The Minyannaires | poetry with six fabulous female poets | Temple • Life Traveller | an interactive dance performance on migration and JEWS AND BRITISH THEATRE: JEWS AND BRITISH THEATRE: memory Millennium Bridgesemi-fi | 11.30 onwardsnalist Jess Robinson, memory Millennium Bridge | 11.30 onwards A SERIES OF ONLINE CONVERSATIONS A SERIES OFPunch ONLINE CONVERSATIONS of Artto and Music | 4.00pmthe stage. of Art and Music and Judy and workshops at| 4.00pm venues across the award-winning himself taking • She Seeks Out Wool | spoken word and knitting tell the stories of • Cockney Yiddish Music Hall | an engaging mix of edgy, cheeky, and October 4th • She Seeks Out Wool | spoken word and knitting tell the stories of • Cockney Yiddish Music Hall | an engaging mix of edgy, cheeky, and October 4th 1 | Henry Bial and Ben Naylor 1 | Henry Bial and Ben Naylor hilarious London songs | Jewish Museum Camden Town | 7.30pm hilarious London songs | Jewish Museum Camden Town | 7.30pm women from Vitebsk to Liverpool | Jewish Museum | 6.00pm women from Vitebsk to Liverpool | Jewish Museum | 6.00pm performance on 31 October. UK from 24 to 29 October. comics Daniel Cainer and Rachel Creeger and “Years ago, I put on a one-man show at the October 6th 2 | Nathan Abrams October 6th 2 | Nathan Abrams • The Wolf of Baghdad | an animated film journey through a Jewish • The Wolf of Baghdad | an animated film journey through a Jewish • Songs of Emily Rose | new songs to make you laugh and cry a little • Songs of Emily Rose | new songs to make you laugh and cry a little October 7th 3 | Amy Rosenthal and Rob Messik October 7th 3 | Amy Rosenthal and Rob Messik memories of their lost Iraqi homeland, with live music from family’s memories of their lost Iraqi homeland, with live music from | Jewish Museum | 7.00 | Jewish Museum | 7.00 Festival has even The Tsitsit Fringe Prince of Egypt actress Natalie Green. Edinburgh Fringe Festival called Muchfamily’s Ado October 12th 4 | Patrick Marber October 12th 4 | Patrick Marber 3yin | King Alfred Phoenix Theatre | 7.30pm 3yin | King Alfred Phoenix Theatre | 7.30pm • After the Unthinkable | a staged reading of a new play on the impact • After the Unthinkable | a staged reading of a new play on the impact • Blokes of a Feather | an evening with comedy scriptwriting giants • Blokes of a Feather | an evening with comedy scriptwriting giants ofNoshing,” war and the Holocaust | Jewish Museum | 6.00pm of war and the Holocaust | Jewish Museum | 6.00pm  For a full listing of events, conjured up the Jewish answer to Halloween Other highlights include Birds of a Feather About he recalls. “It was while I was Marks and Gran | Lovegrove Theatre E18 2RB | 7.30pm Marks and Gran | Lovegrove Theatre E18 2RB | 7.30pm WATCH OUT FOR OUR HALF-TERM WATCH OUT FOR OUR HALF-TERM • The Stove | a shared story, with food , of journeys to the old country • The Stove | a shared story, with food , of journeys to the old country PROGRAMME WITH PJ LIBRARY. PROGRAMME WITH PJ LIBRARY. and back again | Jewish Museum | 6.00pm / 8.00pm and backMuseum again | Jewish Museum | 6.00pm / 8.00pm visit at the Jewish London, with Sitra duo Laurence Marks and Maurice Gran there that I got the Fringe bug and appreciated OCTOBER 25 OCTOBER 25 • The Drowning Shore | an evening of new music by Alastair White, • The Drowning Shore | an evening of new music by Alastair White, Venues in London and across the country. Venues in London and across the country. OCTOBER 3

with mezzo soprano Clara Kanter | JW3 | 7.30pm • The Life of the Great Don Quixote as Written by the Jew Antonio Jose da Silva | world premiere | Jewish Museum | 8.00pm • Sephardic songs with Monica Acosta / Tarsus play global traditional music | King Alfred Phoenix Theatre | 7.00pm / 8.30pm • The Bu-Jew | a second chance to catch Aaron Levene’s work in progress | Etectera Theatre Camden Town | 6.00pm

• Pineapple and Crust | a theatre double bill | King Alfred Phoenix Theatre | 7.30pm

• The Rubber Merchants | a revival of Hanoch Levin’s comedy of hope and risk-taking | King Alfred Phoenix Theatre | 7.00pm • Meet at The Ark At Eight | King Alfred Phoenix | 11.00am / 2.00pm OCTOBER 26 • Meet at The Ark At Eight | King Alfred Phoenix | 11.00am / 2.00pm • The Rubber Merchants | King Alfred Phoenix Theatre | 7.00pm

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with mezzo soprano Clara Kanter | JW3 | 7.30pm • The Life of the Great Don Quixote as Written by the Jew Antonio Jose da Silva | world premiere | Jewish Museum | 8.00pm • Sephardic songs with Monica Acosta / Tarsus play global traditional music | King Alfred Phoenix Theatre | 7.00pm / 8.30pm • The Bu-Jew | a second chance to catch Aaron Levene’s work in progress | Etectera Theatre Camden Town | 6.00pm

• The Rubber Merchants | a revival of Hanoch Levin’s comedy of hope and risk-taking | King Alfred Phoenix Theatre | 7.00pm • Meet at The Ark At Eight | King Alfred Phoenix | 11.00am / 2.00pm OCTOBER 26 • Meet at The Ark At Eight | King Alfred Phoenix | 11.00am / 2.00pm • The Rubber Merchants | King Alfred Phoenix Theatre | 7.00pm

For full details and to book all tickets go to

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• Comedy@ NW7 Kugelroni | comedy with Mike Capozzola | The NW7 Hub NW7 2HX | 7.30pm OCTOBER 5

• The Bu-Jew | comedy with Aaron Levene | King Alfred Phoenix Theatre NW11 7HY | 7.00pm • Pray it Forward | new comedy with Rachel Creeger | King Alfred Phoenix Theatre | 8.30pm OCTOBER 6

• Kugelroni | comedy with Mike Capozzolaa | King Alfred Phoenix Theatre | 7.00pm • Jew-O Rama | new Jewish comedy showcase | King Alfred Phoenix Theatre | 8.30pm OCTOBER 10

• Buenos Klezmer / Jews in Jazz | a double bill of klezmer and jazz | Toulouse Lautrec Jazz Club SE11 4RN | 7.30pm • ‘If it’s Jewish Enough for You ‘ Cabaret | comedy and music featuring The Comic Bard of Anglo Jewry | Soho Theatre | 7.30pm OCTOBER 14

• A Dylan a Day | Jonny Brick is a songwriter who attempts to weave Dylan’s life and work into an hour of song | NW7 Hub | 7.00pm OCTOBER 16

• Demons of Jerusalem | a tale of political intrigue in 1920s Jerusalem – world premiere | King Alfred Phoenix Theatre | 8.30pm OCTOBER 17

• The Minyannaires | poetry with six fabulous female poets | Temple of Art and Music | 4.00pm • She Seeks Out Wool | spoken word and knitting tell the stories of women from Vitebsk to Liverpool | Jewish Museum | 6.00pm • Songs of Emily Rose | new songs to make you laugh and cry a little | Jewish Museum | 7.00 • After the Unthinkable | a staged reading of a new play on the impact of war and the Holocaust | Jewish Museum | 6.00pm • The Stove | a shared story, with food , of journeys to the old country and back again | Jewish Museum | 6.00pm / 8.00pm • The Drowning Shore | an evening of new music by Alastair White, with mezzo soprano Clara Kanter | JW3 | 7.30pm • The Life of the Great Don Quixote as Written by the Jew Antonio Jose da Silva | world premiere | Jewish Museum | 8.00pm • Sephardic songs with Monica Acosta / Tarsus play global traditional music | King Alfred Phoenix Theatre | 7.00pm / 8.30pm • The Bu-Jew | a second chance to catch Aaron Levene’s work in progress | Etectera Theatre Camden Town | 6.00pm


• Pineapple and Crust | a theatre double bill | King Alfred Phoenix Theatre | 7.30pm


• Comedy@ NW7 Kugelroni | comedy with Mike Capozzola | The NW7 Hub NW7 2HX | 7.30pm



• Pineapple and Crust | a theatre double bill | King Alfred Phoenix Theatre | 7.30pm



• The Life of the Great Don Quixote as Written by the Jew Antonio Jose da Silva | King Alfred Phoenix Theatre | 7.00pm • Comedy@NW7 | Philip Simon Work in Progress | 7.30pm • Comedy@ NW7 | Joe Bor The Story of Walter & Herbert | 8.30pm • Letters from the Affair: Pissarro, Degas and the Dreyfus Affair | King Alfred Phoenix Theatre | 9.00 OCTOBER 21

• Surfing the Holyland | An American moves to Tel Aviv, how does she survive? She learns to surf | King Alfred Phoenix Theatre | 7.30pm • Letters from the Affair: Pissarro, Degas and the Dreyfus Affair | streamed performance | 7.00pm OCTOBER 23

• Meet at The Ark At Eight | King Alfred Phoenix | 11.00am / 2.00pm • The Rubber Merchants | King Alfred Phoenix Theatre | 7.00pm • Comedy @ NW7 | Donna Landy and Katie Price | NW7 Hub | 7.30pm • Comedy @ NW7 | Rachel Creeger – Ultimate Jewish Mother (with special guest, Pauline Eyre) | NW7 Hub | 8.30pm OCTOBER 28

• The Rubber Merchants | King Alfred Phoenix Theatre | 7.00pm • Whistle | a powerful show about the pain of second generation memory | Yavneh College Theatre | 8.00pm OCTOBER 30

• Kugelroni | comedy with Mike Capozzolaa | King Alfred Phoenix Theatre | 7.00pm • Jew-O Rama | new Jewish comedy showcase | King Alfred Phoenix Theatre | 8.30pm OCTOBER 10

• Buenos Klezmer / Jews in Jazz | a double bill of klezmer and jazz | Toulouse Lautrec Jazz Club SE11 4RN | 7.30pm • ‘If it’s Jewish Enough for You ‘ Cabaret | comedy and music featuring The Comic Bard of Anglo Jewry | Soho Theatre | 7.30pm

Can’t choose the diamond ring you are looking for?

• The Rosen One | stand up comedy with Hannah Rosen | King Alfred Phoenix Theatre | 8.00pm • Daphna Baram Unmuted | more stand up fresh from the Edinburgh Fringe | King Alfred Phoenix Theatre | 9.00pm

• Keep Kalm and Kvetch | affectionate musical comedy on the world’s longest serving monarch | King Alfred Phoenix Theatre | 8.00pm • Passion Killer | a stand up cabaret on women’s power from Genesis to the present day, with international star Hadar Galron | 9. 30pm


• The Rubber Merchants | a revival of Hanoch Levin’s comedy of hope and risk-taking | King Alfred Phoenix Theatre | 7.00pm • Meet at The Ark At Eight | King Alfred Phoenix | 11.00am / 2.00pm OCTOBER 26

• Meet at The Ark At Eight | King Alfred Phoenix | 11.00am / 2.00pm • The Rubber Merchants | King Alfred Phoenix Theatre | 7.00pm

• A Dylan a Day | Jonny Brick is a songwriter who attempts to weave Dylan’s life and work into an hour of song | NW7 Hub | 7.00pm OCTOBER 16


• Sitra Achra Night: the Jewish answer to Halloween | Dance, music, comedy and Yiddish Punch & Judy | The Jewish Museum | 7.30pm


• Life Traveller | an interactive dance performance on migration and memory Millennium Bridge | 11.30 onwards • Cockney Yiddish Music Hall | an engaging mix of edgy, cheeky, and hilarious London songs | Jewish Museum Camden Town | 7.30pm • The Wolf of Baghdad | an animated film journey through a Jewish family’s memories of their lost Iraqi homeland, with live music from 3yin | King Alfred Phoenix Theatre | 7.30pm • Blokes of a Feather | an evening with comedy scriptwriting giants Marks and Gran | Lovegrove Theatre E18 2RB | 7.30pm


• Demons of Jerusalem | a tale of political intrigue in 1920s Jerusalem – world premiere | King Alfred Phoenix Theatre | 8.30pm OCTOBER 17


October 4th October 6th October 7th October 12th

1 | Henry Bial and Ben Naylor 2 | Nathan Abrams 3 | Amy Rosenthal and Rob Messik 4 | Patrick Marber

WATCH OUT FOR OUR HALF-TERM PROGRAMME WITH PJ LIBRARY. Venues in London and across the country.


Personal & confidential Customer Service Price Offered Instantly Same Day payment

• The Bu-Jew | comedy with Aaron Levene | King Alfred Phoenix Theatre NW11 7HY | 7.00pm • Pray it Forward | new comedy with Rachel Creeger | King Alfred Phoenix Theatre | 8.30pm OCTOBER 6

• Pineapple and Crust | a theatre double bill | King Alfred Phoenix Theatre | 7.30pm

• The Minyannaires | poetry with six fabulous female poets | Temple of Art and Music | 4.00pm • She Seeks Out Wool | spoken word and knitting tell the stories of women from Vitebsk to Liverpool | Jewish Museum | 6.00pm • Songs of Emily Rose | new songs to make you laugh and cry a little | Jewish Museum | 7.00 • After the Unthinkable | a staged reading of a new play on the impact of war and the Holocaust | Jewish Museum | 6.00pm • The Stove | a shared story, with food , of journeys to the old country and back again | Jewish Museum | 6.00pm / 8.00pm • The Drowning Shore | an evening of new music by Alastair White, with mezzo soprano Clara Kanter | JW3 | 7.30pm • The Life of the Great Don Quixote as Written by the Jew Antonio Jose da Silva | world premiere | Jewish Museum | 8.00pm • Sephardic songs with Monica Acosta / Tarsus play global traditional music | King Alfred Phoenix Theatre | 7.00pm / 8.30pm • The Bu-Jew | a second chance to catch Aaron Levene’s work in progress | Etectera Theatre Camden Town | 6.00pm

• Pineapple and Crust | a theatre double bill | King Alfred Phoenix Theatre | 7.30pm OCTOBER 20

• The Life of the Great Don Quixote as Written by the Jew Antonio Jose da Silva | King Alfred Phoenix Theatre | 7.00pm • Comedy@NW7 | Philip Simon Work in Progress | 7.30pm • Comedy@ NW7 | Joe Bor The Story of Walter & Herbert | 8.30pm • Letters from the Affair: Pissarro, Degas and the Dreyfus Affair | King Alfred Phoenix Theatre | 9.00 OCTOBER 21

• Surfing the Holyland | An American moves to Tel Aviv, how does she survive? She learns to surf | King Alfred Phoenix Theatre | 7.30pm • Letters from the Affair: Pissarro, Degas and the Dreyfus Affair | streamed performance | 7.00pm OCTOBER 23

• The Rosen One | stand up comedy with Hannah Rosen | King Alfred Phoenix Theatre | 8.00pm • Daphna Baram Unmuted | more stand up fresh from the Edinburgh Fringe | King Alfred Phoenix Theatre | 9.00pm


• Meet at The Ark At Eight | King Alfred Phoenix | 11.00am / 2.00pm • The Rubber Merchants | King Alfred Phoenix Theatre | 7.00pm • Comedy @ NW7 | Donna Landy and Katie Price | NW7 Hub | 7.30pm • Comedy @ NW7 | Rachel Creeger – Ultimate Jewish Mother (with special guest, Pauline Eyre) | NW7 Hub | 8.30pm OCTOBER 28

• The Rubber Merchants | King Alfred Phoenix Theatre | 7.00pm • Whistle | a powerful show about the pain of second generation memory | Yavneh College Theatre | 8.00pm OCTOBER 30

• Keep Kalm and Kvetch | affectionate musical comedy on the world’s longest serving monarch | King Alfred Phoenix Theatre | 8.00pm • Passion Killer | a stand up cabaret on women’s power from Genesis to the present day, with international star Hadar Galron | 9. 30pm OCTOBER 31

• Sitra Achra Night: the Jewish answer to Halloween | Dance, music, comedy and Yiddish Punch & Judy | The Jewish Museum | 7.30pm


• Life Traveller | an interactive dance performance on migration and memory Millennium Bridge | 11.30 onwards • Cockney Yiddish Music Hall | an engaging mix of edgy, cheeky, and hilarious London songs | Jewish Museum Camden Town | 7.30pm • The Wolf of Baghdad | an animated film journey through a Jewish family’s memories of their lost Iraqi homeland, with live music from 3yin | King Alfred Phoenix Theatre | 7.30pm • Blokes of a Feather | an evening with comedy scriptwriting giants Marks and Gran | Lovegrove Theatre E18 2RB | 7.30pm OCTOBER 25

• The Rubber Merchants | a revival of Hanoch Levin’s comedy of hope and risk-taking | King Alfred Phoenix Theatre | 7.00pm • Meet at The Ark At Eight | King Alfred Phoenix | 11.00am / 2.00pm


October 4th October 6th October 7th October 12th

1 | Henry Bial and Ben Naylor 2 | Nathan Abrams 3 | Amy Rosenthal and Rob Messik 4 | Patrick Marber

WATCH OUT FOR OUR HALF-TERM PROGRAMME WITH PJ LIBRARY. Venues in London and across the country.


• Meet at The Ark At Eight | King Alfred Phoenix | 11.00am / 2.00pm • The Rubber Merchants | King Alfred Phoenix Theatre | 7.00pm

Jewellery Cave Ltd, 48b Hendon Lane, London N3 1TT T: 020 8446 8538 3pm as it should be

Open Monday to Friday 10am to 4pm (anytime) and Saturday 9am to 1pm (by appointment) 3pm as it should be

Jewish News 7 October 2021

Weekend / Food


make this weeknight soup more than just about any other. The classic pairing of orange and carrot is always a crowd-pleaser and choosing your favourite spice paste lets you play around with whatever flavour profile you like. No need to peel the carrots here, just give them a good scrub with the rough side of a sponge. If you don’t have harissa but keep red curry paste or sriracha on hand, by all means, substitute one of those.


1 Heat the oil in a large pot over medium–high heat. Add the onion and stir until well coated. 2 Sauté until the onion is translucent, 2–3 minutes. Add the harissa, then stir in the carrot. 3 Cook for two minutes, then stir in the cashews, orange juice, salt and water. Cover and simmer until the carrot is tender, 10–15 minutes.

SERVES 6 – 8

INGREDIENTS 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil 1 onion, chopped 2 tablespoons harissa, red curry paste or sriracha, plus more to taste 900g carrots, scrubbed and cut into 1cm chunks 155g raw cashews 240ml freshly squeezed orange juice 1½ teaspoons fine-grain sea salt, plus more to taste 960ml water, plus more as needed 1 lemon

4 Remove the pot from the heat and transfer the soup to a high-speed blender (in batches, if necessary). Alternatively, use a handheld blender directly in the pot. Blend the soup until silky smooth. Taste and add more water (to thin), salt or harissa as needed. Add a big squeeze of lemon juice.

toasted almonds or sesame–chilli oil, microgreens or coriander and orange or lemon wedges to serve (optional) Extracted from Super Natural Simple: Whole-Food, Vegetarian Recipes for Real Life by Heidi Swanson, published by Hardie Grant Books, priced £22 (paperback). Available now

5 Ladle the soup into bowls and top with toasted almonds or sesame–chilli oil. Add a final touch of microgreens or coriander and serve with an orange or lemon wedge.

Photos by Heidi Swanson


7 October 2021 Jewish News

JN Junior / In association with

JN Junior

The big question -


expresses herself

What do you think schools could do to make Afghan refugees feel as welcome as possible?

Genius Jenna says: Armed militants known as the Taliban have retaken control of Afghanistan after 20 years. In between, soldiers from the UK, US and other nations stayed in the central Asian country to try to make peace, but over the past few months, the Taliban have taken over again. They have very strict rules and last time when they ruled, didn’t let girls go to school or women to work. They also support horrible acts of violence. Afghans have been trying to escape to safer countries, such as the UK. Around 15,000 people have now arrived here, many of them children without their parents. Known as refugees, these children will have to start new schools and make new friends.

Madonna (yes that one) is the author of a children’s title chosen by PJ Library for its book of the month, which has been inspired by a 300-year-old Jewish tale. Rafi Bibring, age 10, from Mill Hill says: The famous singer wrote Mr Peabody’s Apples to show the power of words and I know how important it is to make refugees danger of lashon hara – speaking unkindly feel welcome because my great-grandpa, Harry Bibring, was a child refugee from Nazi Austria. about someone. It was published in 2003, I think that starting a new school as a refugee must but PJ Library will this month send out be very frightening. Refugees come to the country copies to five and six-year-olds. with nothing and may not be able to speak any English. Schools could At the end of the book, Madonna set up a fundraising campaign to raise money for the Afghan refugees explains that she was inspired by a and parents could also donate supplies, such as blankets, clothes, books 300-year-old moral by mystal rabbi the and toys. If refugee children started at my school, we could help them feel Baal Shem Tov, which she heard from her welcome by playing games like football, where you don’t need to speak English. Kabbalah teacher about how we must We could also make signs in their language and try to learn about their culture. choose words carefully to avoid causing harm to others. Madelyn Travis, chair of the PJ Library UK book selection committee, says: “We are delighted to welcome Barbie! The much-loved doll is literally floating Madonna into the PJ Library on air after teaming up with the European family with her lovely, Space Agency (ESA) and its only European l ie d d a book. Of course, nostalgic book B r With Ivo female astronaut Samantha Cristoforetti to parents are the ones who celebrate Space Week. Running until Sunday, it will be most charmed – aims to encourage young girls to pursue a career in space, science, or amused – by who the technology, engineering and maths. The special edition Barbie, author is. Kids will just enjoy created to look like Samantha, jetted off from Germany’s ESA space the book!” base and travelled on a Zero-gravity flight just like real-life astronauts.

Just for laughs!

Good news for...

ish Where do Jew pray? werewolves go to


Five things to enjoy this month: 3 1 Tsitsit: The Jewish Fringe Festival

PJ Library is hosting half-term story, music, performance and comedy workshops for five to nineyear-olds across the UK, including Jewish Museum London on 28 October,


London Transport Museum Kids go free 23 to 31 October! Explore how London’s public transport system has changed over the past 200 years.

Compiled by Candice Krieger

The Amazing Bubble Man

Pop-tastic! Louis Pearl is coming to the Radlett Centre with his show combining comedy, artistry and audience participation twice-daily on 29 October.


Pippi Longstocking


Sofie Miller introduces ‘the strongest girl in the world’ to youngsters at the artsdepot to mark the 75th birthday of Astrid Lindgren’s muchloved character on Sunday.

Infinite Jest Head to JW3 for a race through space immersive theatre performance for all the family. The child-led adventure lets the audience take centre-stage, on 17 October,



Jewish News 7 October 2021

Year 13 Journey to

POLAND 27th-31st October 2021

Sign up* at: For more information, contact or call 020 8457 4444


Join an incredible journey through 1,000 years of Jewish history, life, tragedy, resilience & triumph.


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7 October 2021 Jewish News


Orthodox Judaism


Torah For Today


What does the Torah say about: Climate change

BY REBBETZIN SIOBHAN DANSKY Last week we restarted reading the entire Torah by recounting the stories of the creation of the world: Adam and Eve, Cain and Abel. This week’s portion, Noach, takes place a mere ten generations from Adam, and we are going to read about the complete obliteration of existence bar Noach, his family and enough samples of plant and animal life to repopulate the earth. What went so wrong that God felt it necessary to erase His entire creation in the manner of a global Etch A Sketch? The Torah gives us the answer when it says: “The earth became corrupt before God, and the earth had become filled with robbery” (Bereshit 6:11). The commentator Rashi comments that “corrupt” means that the people were also worshipping idols and being immoral, but the Torah specifies robbery as it was this that sealed their fate and tipped the balance in favour of destruction. Why

is stealing so bad that it required God’s new world to be destroyed? To look at the distribution of wealth, belongings or family and to decide that someone else’s lot should really be yours is tantamount to saying that God made a mistake when He allocated each person their share. To help oneself to someone else’s possessions shows the ultimate lack of respect to one’s neighbour as well as to God and undermines His ultimate knowledge and power to give each person exactly what he or she needs. By contrast, the ark was the antidote that taught Noach and his family the lessons of kindness and giving each animal, person and plant exactly what they need according to God’s design in order that they should survive and go on to rebuild a new, better world.

◆ Siobhan Dansky is Senior Rebbetzen of Cranbrook United Synagogue

BY RABBI DAVID MASON Later in the month, world leaders and activists from across the world will gather in Glasgow for the 2021 United Nations Climate Change Conference, COP26 to agree on how we can ensure the stable future of our world. Prime Minister Boris Johnson has said the climate summit will be a “turning point for humanity”. So, what does the Torah say about saving our planet? Looking after our world is rooted in the story of Creation. There, God makes Adam, the first person, and places Adam in the Garden of Eden. We are told that Adam is put there ‘l’ovda ul’shomra’. This means that Adam was asked to do two things – to work the garden, and to guard or preserve it. The world and its abundance are given over to humanity. We are permitted to work the land, and extract what we need

from it. But that extraction must be balanced by an obligation to protect the world, and to allow it to sustain itself. For much of human history, these two concepts could live in harmony. It was put so well by the 18th century German Rabbi, Samson Raphael Hirsch, who said in his Torah commentary that “nature itself finds its appointed

purpose promoted, as well as the necessary condition for its continuance, in man’s conscientious dutiful use of the bounties of nature, as expressed by avoda and shmira”. People would find their nourishment from the land and sea, but always allow it to regrow and recultivate. Over the past roughly 200 years, from the Industrial Revolution onwards, we have been extracting for mass production, and often for profit, with less awareness of what this would do to the planet. Now we know that overextraction is threatening the stability of our planet. We need to return desperately to this Biblical statement and reflect on how we can bring our benefiting from the planet back into line with its protection. ◆ Rabbi David Mason serves Muswell Hill Synagogue


Jewish News 7 October 2021

Progressive Judaism

Progressively Speaking

The Bible Says What? Jonah is upset that God forgave Nineveh

Why are we married to a Jewish law that fails to protect women?

BY RABBI DR RENÉ PFERTZEL In a nutshell, the Book of Jonah is the story of a reluctant prophet. At the opening of the story, God called Jonah to go to Nineveh, the capital of the Assyrian Empire, Israel’s arch enemy, to warn the inhabitants that because of their iniquities and sinfulness God was about to destroy them. Instead of heeding God’s voice, Jonah fled in the opposite direction, to what was then the other side of the known world. Next follows the part we all know. God sends a storm against the boat Jonah had boarded. The crew are terrified. The sailors draw lots to see who is responsible for the storm and throw Jonah overboard, whereupon God sends a fish to swallow him. After he repents, the fish then spits Jonah up on to the land. What is most interesting to me is what happens next. Jonah rushes to Nineveh in order to deliver his prophecy: Nineveh is wicked and will

be destroyed in 40 days! The people of Ninevah believe him and change their lives. Jonah, however, is very disappointed when God forgives them. You would have thought Jonah would be happy to see that Nineveh was saved, instead of destroyed. Was Jonah’s ego hurt when his prophecy wasn’t fulfilled? Was he shocked that God would forgive non-Jews? Here we are like Jonah. It is a human trait to believe that the world should revolve around our fragile egos, and when we don’t understand what is happening, we get angry because we are afraid. We can be so inflated with ourselves that we forget our place in the universe: a mere grain of sand in a machine that is so much bigger than us. The Book of Jonah is indeed a lesson in humility.

◆ Rabbi Dr René Pfertzel serves Kingston Liberal Synagogue

BY RABBI SYLVIA ROTHSCHILD When Zebulun Simantov, “the last Jew in Afghanistan”, was evacuated from Kabul, initial reports failed to mention that his wife had been waiting for a get, a Jewish divorce, for more than 20 years. Various rabbis had tried and failed to get him to agree to a get and it appeared that she would remain an agunah, chained to the dead marriage forever. Jewish law requires the husband voluntarily to grant his wife a divorce and he cannot be pressured to do so. Women cannot initiate the divorce process, and the imbalance of power means that women can spend their entire lives legally still chained to the marriage, or are extorted to give up their rights in order to gain their freedom The process of Jewish divorce begins in the Bible with the injunction that if a man no longer wishes to be married, he must write

his wife a sefer keritut (document of release), place it in her hand and send her away from his house. On this short passage in Deuteronomy (24:1-4), the raft of rabbinic legislation for both the marriage contract and divorce is constructed. The clear intent of the rabbinic marriage contract is to protect women, who are the more vulnerable partner economically. So why has the effect of rabbinic divorce been to make her even more vulnerable?

Rabbenu Gershom amended the law to ensure that she cannot be divorced against her will, but until now no one has risen to the challenge that the divorce process can leave women legally tied to abusive men, unable to move on in their lives. Instead, Orthodox Batei Din wring their hands and claim they cannot cut the ties without the husband’s agreement. Blu Greenberg famously wrote that where there is a rabbinic will there is a halachic way. But many halachic ways have been posited, and still, the Orthodox world prevaricates. The wedding liturgy can be amended to prevent the problem, as can the text of the Ketubah. As we enter 5782, what is the Orthodox world waiting for? ◆ Sylvia Rothschild has been a Reform community rabbi in south London for 30 years

CYP-IAPT Trainee in Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) at Noa Girls Noa Girls is a charity supporting adolescent girls in the Orthodox Jewish Community. An incredible training opportunity has become available at Noa Girls, provided through the Child and Young Persons Improving Access to Psychological Therapies Programme (CYP-IAPT). The successful candidate will receive a full-time salary whilst undertaking two days of training and three days of working clinically at Noa Girls each week. The one year of training, towards a Post Graduate Diploma (PGDip) in Cognitive Behavioural Therapy, takes place at Kings College London. The clinical work utilising CBT supporting girls and young women in the community will take place at Noa Girls. This is a full-time fully funded position (including both university PGDip course fees and placement), with funding being provided by NHS England.

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This is a training position, so applicants are required to apply simultaneously for the trainee role with Noa Girls and the KCL Post Graduate Diploma in Child and Young Person IAPT Therapy in order to be shortlisted. For further information about this training role, to receive a job description, please email (For more information about the course and minimum entry criteria, please see: Please complete your university application using the KCL University Application Guidance supplied. The training placement includes supervision by clinicians specialising in CBT as well as in-house support by a clinical psychologist. Start date: January 2022 Salary commensurate with experience: up to mid-point NHS Band 6 equivalent Closing date for applications: Midday on Wednesday 20th October 2021

7 October 2021 Jewish News

Ask our


Professional advice from our panel / Ask Our Experts

Our trusty team of advisers answers your questions about everything from law and finance to dating and dentistry. This week: How to present your CV, redundancy after furlough and phone volume amplifiers LESLEY TRENNER CAREER AFVISER


I know having a good CV is important but everyone keeps giving me different advice. Are there golden rules? Joseph Dear Joseph The purpose of a CV is to get selected for interview. How you write your CV depends on who you are and the job you are applying for, but there are some key principles. An employer wants to quickly identify the most promising candidates. So start with a brief, attention-grabbing profile. This should sum up who you are (‘talented web designer’, ‘experienced charity fundraiser’) and why you would be an asset (‘enjoys working with diverse


SPENCER WEST Dear Emma I’ve been made redundant after being put on furlough at the end of March 2020. At the time that I was furloughed I received a letter confirming my salary would be reduced to 80 percent, in line with the scheme. I temporarily returned to work on reduced hours, which worked out to be 80 percent of my full time

hours so pay stayed at 80 percent, and was then back on furlough in October 2020 to date. I have now been made redundant and my employers are saying my redundancy package will be calculated at my furlough salary as my salary was permanently reduced. I have my letter from when I was put on furlough and although they did say changes are being made to my contract, the focus of the letter was that I am being placed on furlough. They did not confirm what the new salary would be, it just said 80 percent. Is this right? Hannah

stakeholders’, ‘delivers on time and budget’). When writing about your past career, focus on your achievements rather than listing roles and responsibilities. Find examples of where you really made a difference, such as saving an organisation money, solving a problem or increasing customer satisfaction. A potential employer will avoid a CV that is full of detail and complicated jargon. Keep it to two pages and set out the information professionally using lots of ‘white space’. Use simple language, a large font and headings with bullet points. Your CV must be clearly written with no spelling mistakes. But don’t spend hours writing and rewriting. A CV is only one part of your job search – getting out and networking with people can be even more important! At Resource, we can explain different styles of CV and help tailor yours to give you the best chance of getting an interview.

Dear Hannah, I’m so sorry to hear you have been made redundant and that you are having this issue. You are right to question this as the regulations state that if you’ve been on furlough, or worked reduced hours through flexible furlough, then your employer must use 100 percent of your full normal pay prior to being put on furlough when calculating your redundancy pay. If you think your final pay is wrong, you should first try to resolve the issue with your employer. If you’ve tried to speak with them to resolve this issue, then you may be able to make a claim to an employment tribunal.


JEWISH DEAF ASSOCIATION Dear Sue I bought a phone with a volume amplifier, as I’ve been finding it more difficult to hear when I chat on the phone. But it hasn’t made it any easier – I still can’t hear clearly. I don’t understand why. Can you help? Marion Dear Marion There are many amplified

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phones with different levels of volume and clarity – it is really important to get one that is not just loud, but also has the best quality of sound for your hearing loss. Our Technology and Information Centre has lots of phones that you can try out (both corded and cordless) - so that you can make an informed choice rather than looking through a catalogue and hoping for the best. If you wear hearing aids, holding the phone handset in the right place makes a big difference. If you wear behind-theear aids you’ll be hearing from a microphone on the aid rather than from the mould in your ear, so always lift the phone slightly

higher and hold it to the microphone. All specialist amplified phones are equipped with induction loops so if your aid has a loop setting, press the button at the top to turn it on and you’re likely to be able to hear more clearly. Induction loops transmit sound directly to hearing aids rather than it passing through air waves, so there’s less chance you’ll have problems with whistling or distortion. If you’d like to make an appointment to try out some phones and receive expert help, please contact Gabrielle on 020 8446 0214 or info@hearingconnect. I hope this is helpful to you.


Jewish News 7 October 2021

Ask Our Experts / Professional advice from our panel

Our Experts Got a question for a member of our team? Email: PRIVATE HEALTHCARE SPECIALIST



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7 October 2021 Jewish News


Professional advice from our panel / Ask Our Experts




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ASHLEY PRAGER Qualifications: • Professional insurance and reinsurance broker. Offering PI/D&O cover, marine and aviation, property owners, ATE insurance, home and contents, fine art, HNW. • Specialist in insurance and reinsurance disputes, utilising Insurance backed products. (Including non insurance business disputes). • Ensuring clients do not pay more than required.

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BENJAMIN ALBERT Qualifications: • Co-Founder and Technical Director of ADWConnect – a specialist in business telecommunications, serving customers worldwide. • Independent consultant and supplier of Telephone & Internet services. • Client satisfaction is at the heart of everything my team and I do, always striving to find the most cost-effective solutions.


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Jewish News 7 October 2021

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7 October 2021 Jewish News


Fun, games and prizes






9 10 13 17 18 19 20


7 8





15 16





ACROSS 1 Prolonged pain (4) 3 Take liberties (6)

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

Backward flow (3) Gave sanction to (10) Gather speed (10) Adhesive (3) Silver paper for wrapping food (7) Soft mud or snow (6) Measure of paper (4)

6 2






























Crossword ACROSS: 1 Dodo 3 Dynamo 8 Bayonet 9 Ban 10 Speed limit 13 Oppressive 17 Auk 18 Cloying 19 Curate 20 Mend DOWN: 1 Debt 2 Dry up 4 Yet 5 Album 6 Ornate 7 Annexe 11 Lesson 12 Mosaic 14 Poker 15 Voice 16 Aged 18 Cot


8 1 6 3 4 9 2 7 5

3 2 5 4 9 1 8 6 7
















22 19
















































4 8 1 2 7 6 5 9 3

1 9 8 7 6 3 4 5 2


16 22 15

3 5 3

15 11 6






3 1 4 3

2 17


17 24














4 2

5 20



















Suguru 6 7 9 5 3 8 1 2 4





4 2




1 4

See next issue for puzzle solutions.


Sudoku 9 5 7 1 8 2 3 4 6




2 3 4 6 5 7 9 8 1






Last issue’s solutions













9 6

Each cell in an outlined block must contain a digit: a two-cell block contains the digits 1 and 2, a three-cell block contains the digits 1, 2 and 3; and so on. The same digit must not appear in neighbouring cells, not even diagonally.

In this finished crossword, every letter of the alphabet appears as a code number. All you have to do is crack the code and fill in the grid. Replacing the decoded numbers with their letters in the grid will help you to guess the identity of other letters.


7 2


The listed food beginning with the letter B, can all be found in the grid. Words may run either forwards or backwards, in a horizontal, vertical or diagonal direction, but always in a straight, unbroken line.


8 5

6 3 8 5 1 3


1 6 9





8 6

7 4

8 Move (power) away from central government (7)


8 4 9

DOWN 1 Presidential adviser (4) 2 Great disorder (5) 4 Award given by the Queen (inits)(3) 5 For all to see (5) 6 Typify (6) 7 Of fabric, decorated with patterns of roses or daisies, eg (6) 11 Throughout (6) 12 Scottish dish (6) 14 Welsh word for Wales (5) 15 Steak (1-4) 16 Area of very poor housing (4) 18 Thermal resistance unit for blankets (3)

12 13


7 4 2 9 1 5 6 3 8

5 6 3 8 2 4 7 1 9

3 1 3 2 3 1

2 4 5 1 5 4

1 3 2 3 2 1

All puzzles © Puzzler Media Ltd -

Wordsearch 2 4 5 1 4 3

5 1 2 3 5 2

2 3 4 1 4 1

1 3 1 2 3 2

4 2 4 5 1 4

5 1 3 2 3 2

2 4 5 1 4 1

5 1 3 2 5 3

3 2 4 1 4 1








Codeword O R C E M U R A H D A J D










40 Jewish News

7 October 2021

Business Services Directory ANTIQUES 44

The Jewish News 22 September 2016

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Jewish News 7 October 2021


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