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November 23, 2018 | 15 Kislev 5779

NOTEWORTHY LOCAL Love and support is in the air


Candlelighting 4:39 p.m. | Havdalah 5:41 p.m. | Vol. 61, No. 47 | pittsburghjewishchronicle.org

Squirrel Hill windows reclaim past history

Project decorating city with Jewish hearts takes off. Page 2

I “We were trying to decide if we should go on lockdown,” said Lysaght. “I wanted to know, do we lock the doors? We have lots of windows.” The district manager told her, “Whatever you feel is safest.” After consulting with her employees, Lysaght decided to lock the door on Shady, but to keep a nearby door on Forbes ajar. “I felt like keeping the door open was the right thing to do, because people kept coming in and just talking,” she said. When news reports confirmed that multiple people had been killed, a “shock” settled over the store, located a half-mile south of Tree of Life. Employees and customers began worrying about “who we might not see come through our doors again,” said Lysaght. There were “lots of hugs, lots of crying,” she said. “It was an emotional day.” Between 4 and 5 p.m. that afternoon, the store manager sent a text message to Flannery. “I had finished up work, and wanted to know if she was interested in painting the windows of the store,” she said, noting it’s “a busy street” with a lot of foot traffic, some of which would be from “people who were going up there to pay honor” at

magine explaining the past three weeks in Pittsburgh Jewish communal life to someone unfamiliar with Squirrel Hill, its topography or the unbreakable bonds shared by those residing within the confines of its tree-lined, historic, occasionally labyrinthine roads. That is exactly what local leaders did for 100 visiting North American Jewish officials in the form of a Nov. 13 bus tour and presentations. The one-day solidarity mission, which was spearheaded by the JCC Association of North America, the Jewish Community Center of Greater Pittsburgh, the Jewish Federation of Greater Pittsburgh and Jewish Family and Community Services, demonstrated support of Pittsburgh’s Jewish community and served as an opportunity to share best practices in communal crisis response. “From your short stay here we hope you’re able to see who we are as a city and a community,” and “who and what we’re made of,” said Meryl Ainsman, Federation board chair, to guests inside the JCC’s Katz Auditorium. Throughout the day, speakers explained the effectiveness of organizational responses to the Oct. 27 attack at the Tree of Life building, pointing out that the results stemmed from years of collaborations. Amanda Allen and Rebecca Elam, both of the FBI Victim Services Division, stressed that “relationships are critical,” and “you have to have a framework in place.” The FBI’s presentation detailed the creation of a crisis center and the workings of fellow agents and analysts who provided “on scene assistance,” performed death notices and arranged spaces where information

Please see Windows, page 22

Please see Tour, page 23

Archiving a memorial

 Windows outside of the Starbucks on the corner of Shady Avenue and Forbes Avenue were painted by Nicole Flannery. Photo by Nicole Flannery.

Page 4 LIFESTYLE Museum celebrates Israel @ 70

Cleveland exhibit represents a tribute to the Jewish state and its rich history. Page 10

North American leaders given glimpse of Pittsburgh from the pews By Adam Reinherz | Staff Writer


Volunteers take the makeshift tribute at Tree of Life inside.


By Adam Reinherz I Staff Writer


ays after 11 Jews were murdered inside the Tree of Life building, Melissa Lysaght and Nicole Flannery utilized the windows lining Squirrel Hill’s Starbucks on Shady and Forbes avenues to publicly display solidarity with the city’s Jewish community. Never imagining that such actions would generate a global response, or that a simple show of support would serve as a historical reclamation, the two relatives and friends merely set out to do something which “felt right,” said Lysaght, the store’s manager. The morning of the Oct. 27 attack, Lysaght arrived at work, muted her phone and spoke with staff. Nearly three hours later, upon hearing the sounds of sirens, Lysaght peered out of the store’s oversized transparent windows and observed vehicles racing north on Shady Avenue. She then noticed an ambulance darting across Forbes Avenue. “One of the customers had come in and said, ‘Something must have happened on the corner of Shady and Wilkins,’” she recalled. Patrons, who turned to their phones for updates, realized a mass shooting had occurred inside the Tree of Life building and an active shooter remained. Lysaght reached out to her district manager.

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Headlines ‘Jewish hearts’ spread message of love throughout city — LOCAL — By Toby Tabachnick | Senior Staff Writer


knitted blue Star of David with a white heart at its center was draped on the hand of the Roberto Clemente sculpture at PNC Park. Another was attached to the wheelchair of Camille, a homeless woman sitting at the corner of Penn Avenue and Sixth Street, balancing on her lap a cardboard sign asking for “blessings.” More stars hang from trees and signs at synagogues and churches around the city, on lampposts and in the shop windows of businesses in Squirrel Hill, throughout Mt. Lebanon and Shadyside and Lawrenceville, and on the Christmas tree at the City-County Building. All told, more than 2,000 “Jewish Hearts,” created by more than 1,000 crafters from around the world and hung by 40 volunteers last weekend, have decorated the Steel City in memory of the 11 people who were murdered in the anti-Semitic attack at the Tree of Life building on Oct. 27. The project goes by the handle “Jewish Hearts for Pittsburgh,” and was launched by Hinda Mandell, a professor at the Rochester Institute of Technology, and Ellen Dominus Broude, an executive at Viacom and a resident of Westchester County, N.Y. Three days after the Tree of Life attack, Broude was scrolling through Facebook when she came across a post by Mandell depicting knitted Jewish stars with hearts at their centers that were placed at a Jewish cemetery that had been desecrated. In her post, Mandell suggested that it might be meaningful to place these types of stars around Pittsburgh. Broude, who has participated in other craft projects advancing social justice issues, replied to Mandell’s post that she could help


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Hanukah. Someone did 18, someone did double chai. Then, it spread.” People from all over the world began sending stars to a post office box designated for the project, with each crafter adding his or her own personal touch to the creations. While some stars were knitted or crocheted, others were created from recycled material, Popsicle sticks, polymer clay or fabric. Some were simple drawings that were laminated. Broude received stars from London and Hawaii, from a Columbine survivor and from residents of Parkland, Fla. A group of Catholic students from Little Rock, Ark., sent 75 stars. “The panoply of religions, and atheists, and just humans were represented,” Broude said. “People who are black, white, brown. Democrats and Republicans, for sure. And politics never came up once. Not even anything about gun control. It was really just an outpouring of support for humanity and the notion that an p Jewish stars and hearts are popping up all assault against one is an assault against over greater Pittsburgh. (More photos can be all, and there is no room in this world found on Page 31.) Photo by Jamie Lebovitz for hate. There are so many more good make that happen, as she was planning a trip people than evil, who don’t all agree on the to Pittsburgh on Nov. 17 to visit her daughter, same ideals, but they agree that good is good, a senior at Carnegie Mellon University. and evil is not.” Jamie Lebovitz of Mt. Lebanon and Andrea The two women, who had never met, spoke by phone and cemented the deal, launching a Riberi of Upper St. Clair “quickly emerged as new Facebook group to get the project started. on-the-ground leaders, which was so incredible,” “We thought we’d get 200 members,” Broude added. “I was starting to get worried that Broude said. “We’re probably close to 1,100 we weren’t going to have enough people to hang right now. And I thought we’d get a couple these things. And Jamie and Andrea stepped hundred stars. It turns out we hung over forward and said, ‘Do not worry about that; we 2,000 [Saturday, Nov. 17]. It didn’t occur will take care of that and make sure that will to me that people were going to be making happen.’ And boy did they deliver.” Lebovitz and Riberi got involved once 11, one for every person. Suddenly, people started posting pictures of their 11 stars. they saw the project on Facebook. “This project was beautiful,” Lebovitz Other people did eight, for every night of


said. “Here are people that are from out of town, coming together on this. They needed people here in Pittsburgh to help them navigate locally.” Lebovitz pulled together a list of locations that would be meaningful places to display the stars, including locations outside of Squirrel Hill. “We needed to show love to all of Pittsburgh,” Lebovitz stressed. As the stars were being hung, volunteers took photos of them from close range, and some from farther back, to post on social media so that the crafters who sent them in could see where they were being displayed, Lebovitz said. While she was happy to be a “conduit” for helping execute the project, it was also “therapeutic” on a personal level to be involved, Lebovitz said. “I’m still in the midst of shock and going through moments of grief where I just start crying uncontrollably,” she said. “This was the greatest therapy for me, getting involved.” Although most of the stars have been displayed, the Jewish Hearts for Pittsburgh project will continue. For the next phase, leaders have asked people to send small “stitchable” crafts embodying their ideas of “community,” which will be sewn together into quilts. Those quilts will then be displayed on a more permanent basis in memory of the Tree of Life victims, according to the project’s Facebook page. Another project going forward may include showcasing some of the heartfelt notes that accompanied the stars, according to Broude. “I felt very hopeful,” Broude said of coming to Pittsburgh to hang the stars. “To actually experience the embodiment of good over evil gave me great hope for our future.”  PJC Toby Tabachnick can be reached at ttabachnick@pittsburghjewishchronicle.org.

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2 NOVEMBER 23, 2018



Headlines Kristallnacht remembered through multi-faceted show at Byham — LOCAL — By Toby Tabachnick | Senior Staff Writer


n an extraordinary fusion of classical music, narration, theater and video images, Mona Golabek may have found the perfect way to tell the story of her mother, Holocaust survivor and piano prodigy Lisa Jura. Golabek was in Pittsburgh last week, preforming before more than 600 attendees at the Byham Theater to commemorate the 80th anniversary of Kristallnacht. The show was sponsored by the Holocaust Center of Pittsburgh in partnership with Classrooms Without Borders. Recalling that her mother often said that “every piece of music tells a story,” Golabek — a Grammy-nominated concert pianist who has entertained audiences at the Hollywood Bowl and the John F. Kennedy Center alongside major conductors and orchestras — adeptly interspersed her mother’s story with Grieg’s “Concerto in A Minor,” Beethoven’s “Moonlight Sonata,” Debussy’s “Clair de Lune,” and other pieces to bring that story to life. Jura lived in Vienna and dreamed of becoming a concert pianist. Her life

was shattered when the Nazis occupied Austria. Although Jura’s parents had three daughters, they could only afford p Mona Golabek one ticket on the Photo provided Kindertransport — a rescue mission designed by Jews and Christians to allow 10,000 unaccompanied refugee children to flee to Great Britain. Jura, who was 14, was given the ticket. The last words she heard from her mother as she boarded the train were: “Hold on to your music. It will be your best friend in life. I will be with you always through the music,” Golabek told the audience. Jura eventually found her way to an orphanage in London on Willesden Lane, along with about 30 other Jewish children who had fled Nazi-occupied countries. Although she worked in the day at a factory, at night, she found solace — and brought a bit of joy to the other children — by playing the piano in the basement. Jura survived the war, and eventually immigrated to the United States. She taught her daughter to play the piano when she

was 4, while also recounting stories of her pre-war life, as well as life on Willesden Lane. Golabek’s performance piece is based on her book, “The Children of Willesden Lane.” Classrooms Without Borders purchased 14,000 copies of the book and distributed them to 38 area schools — including Pittsburgh Public Schools, Community Day School and Baldwin-Whitehall — as part of its Holocaust curriculum. All participating students were given the opportunity to see Golabek perform at additional shows, to which CWB provided subsidies for the students’ bus transportation. Melissa Haviv, assistant director of CWB, found that Golabek’s book “speaks to the students on so many levels. It inspires them to work through adversity and to make the best of themselves.” Golabek addressed a group of students while in town, Haviv said, and told them her mother’s story was about “humanity.” “She said, ‘Look around,’” Haviv recounted. “‘You may have different religions, and not agree with each other, and have different skin colors, but our hearts are all the same color.’” Telling the story of the Holocaust through the experiences of one individual or one family “puts a face to the history,” Haviv said. “There is no way for us to grasp the atrocities of World War II,” she explained. “But

when we hear a particular story, we can understand the pain, and the fear and the impact that it had on that person and on generations to come. That’s how you use education as a tool.” The 80th anniversary of Kristallnacht came less than two weeks after the Oct. 27 anti-Semitic attack at the Tree of Life building, Haviv noted. “We had our own Kristallnacht in Pittsburgh,” she said. “There is no better way to describe what happened at Tree of Life than ‘Kristallnacht.’ Even the physicality of the building was destroyed, there is broken glass everywhere, and a lot of damage to the walls and the pews. We really did suffer a Kristallnacht.” In a short address to the Byham audience following Golabek’s performance, Rabbi Hazzan Jeffrey Myers, spiritual leader of Tree of Life*Or L’Simcha, made a similar observation. “We lived through our own Kristallnacht — a kristallmorgen — in the United States,” Myers said, describing “broken glass and broken families.” “Your story uplifted me and gave me hope,” he said to Golabek. “Love will always defeat hate.”  PJC Toby Tabachnick can be reached at ttabachnick@pittsburghjewishchronicle.org.

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NOVEMBER 23, 2018 3

Headlines Tree of Life memorial deconstructed, taken indoors


olunteers from Tree of Life*Or L’Simcha Congregation, New Light Congregation and Congregation Dor Hadash, the three synagogues targeted in the Oct. 27 antiSemitic attack that claimed 11 lives in Pittsburgh, began deconstructing the makeshift memorials outside the building last week, 18 days after the tragedy. In the days and weeks following the attack, flowers, cards, stones and signs were placed in several spots near the property in memory of the congregants murdered inside. On Nov. 14, volunteers were joined by experts in memorialization and archival preservation, including Eric Lidji of the Rauh Jewish History Program & Archives, and Laurie Eisenberg and Jay Aronson (both of Carnegie Mellon University) to separate stones, gather flowers and relocate items indoors for preservation and future reconstruction. Initially, the materials will be erected and placed “inside the glass doors in the Tree of Life’s main sanctuary lobby, which was unaffected by the tragic events,” thus allowing public viewing without fear of vandalism or destruction due to inclement weather. Ultimately, the objects will be collected, cataloged and preserved in the Rauh Jewish Archives at the Senator John Heinz History Center, and made available to researchers, historians and members of the public, according to the congregations.  PJC — Adam Reinherz

p Since the Oct. 27 attack, a steady stream of flowers, cards, stones and signs have accumulated outside of the Tree of Life building.

p Laurie Eisenberg, right, and Eric Lidji discuss the process of collecting, transporting and preserving the various items.

p Eric Lidji removes stones placed above one of the makeshift memorials. Stones from each of the 11 memorials were placed in correspondingly labeled plastic bags.

p Jay Aronson separates two flowers from the thousands which have accumulated on site. Flowers were sorted for drying, composting and donating.

p Travis Leivo, of Shadyside Worms, places flowers inside the bed of a pickup truck. After the plastic wrappings are removed, the flowers will be composted in a process that should take six to nine months. Upon completion, Leivo will return the compost to the site for future planting. “It should be ready by next spring,” he said.

p Susan Melnick, of Dor Hadash (left), and Barbara Caplan, of New Light, share a moment while separating flowers from glass near the corner of Wilkins Avenue and Murray Avenue. t Dory Levine, a Tree of Life*Or L’Simcha member, holds a painted rock before placing it in a bucket of similarly marked stones. Photos by Adam Reinherz

p Suzanne Schreiber, a past president of Tree of Life*Or L’Simcha, smooths stones inside the synagogue’s space. Items were transported indoors and placed on butcher block paper in order to dry.

4 NOVEMBER 23, 2018



Headlines Hate crimes, anti-Jewish incidents on the rise — LOCAL — By Liz Spikol | Special to the Chronicle


he number of hate crimes is up, according to the FBI’s newly released 2017 hate crimes statistics, continuing a trend seen the past few years. There were more than 1,000 additional hate crimes reported in 2017 compared to a year earlier, but there was also increased reporting from law enforcement. The increase includes a 37 percent spike in anti-Semitic crimes between 2016 and 2017. In 2016, participating law enforcement agencies reported 684 such incidents to the FBI. In 2017, that number jumped to 938. The highest number of anti-Jewish hate crimes took place in 1996, when there were 1,109 such crimes. Since 2008, anti-Jewish hate crimes declined each year until 2015, when they began to rise again. This year’s spike in anti-Jewish crimes is the steepest recorded increase in the FBI’s online database going back 12 years. The numbers are sobering, ADL CEO and National Director Jonathan A. Greenblatt noted in a statement. “Two weeks ago, we witnessed the most deadly anti-Semitic hate crime in American history [at the Tree of Life building in Pittsburgh]. Today, we have another FBI study

showing a big jump in hate crimes against Americans because of their race, religion, ethnicity and sexual orientation,” he said. “This report provides further evidence that more must be done to address the divisive climate of hate in America. That begins with leaders from all walks of life and from all sectors of society forcefully condemning anti-Semitism, bigotry and hate whenever it occurs.” The hate crime statistics are an annual compilation from the Uniform Crime Reporting Program that tracks such crimes across the country. The information in the report comes from thousands of law enforcement agencies, which are encouraged to submit incident reports that meet the FBI’s UCR Program definition for hate crimes. The program defines a hate crime as “a committed criminal offense which is motivated, in whole or in part, by the offender’s bias(es) against a race, religion, disability, sexual orientation, ethnicity, gender or gender identity.” The emphasis on motivation is important because offenders can incorrectly assume someone is part of a targeted group, as when, for instance, a white nationalist gunman went to an Overland Park, Kan., JCC and to a Jewish retirement community in 2014 and killed three non-Jewish people in an anti-Semitic attack. In such cases, the FBI still counts the crime as a bias crime because the perpetrator was driven by bigotry or hatred of a particular group.

The FBI tracks six different types of bias that motivate hate crimes: race/ethnicity/ ancestry; religion; sexual orientation; disability; gender; and gender identity. Each type of bias is further divided. Anti-Jewish crimes, as the FBI calls them, are tracked under the religion category, which includes bias crimes against Buddhists, Catholics, Eastern Orthodox, Hindus, Muslims, Jehovah’s Witnesses, Mormons, Protestants, Christians and even atheists and agnostics. Here are some yearly statistics: Anti-Jewish hate crime incidents

2014: 609 2015: 664 2016: 684 2017: 938

Total hate crime incidents

2014: 5,479 2015: 5,850 2016: 6,121 2017: 7,175

Looking at available FBI numbers since 1996, however, the total number of hate crimes is still below the high of 2001, when a total of 9,730 hate crimes was reported to the UCR Program by law enforcement. The latest report reveals that 59.6 percent of all single-bias hate crime incidents were race-based, with almost half of the crimes

committed against African Americans. Hate crimes against Latinos and Arab Americans increased significantly; crimes against Asian Pacific Americans and Native Americans were up, too. Religiously based hate crimes are up by 23 percent, and 20.6 percent of the total hate crime victims were targeted due to religious bias. It was the largest number of religion-based hate crimes reported, apart from 2001. Jews were the most targeted of any religious group, as 60 percent of religion-based crimes were against perceived Jewish targets. At the same time, the ADL cautioned that the FBI’s statistics are likely low. Even with 16,149 law enforcement agencies submitting reports — the highest participation since the program’s inception — there are many jurisdictions that did not report, including at least 91 cities with populations exceeding 100,000 people. And 87 percent of respondents nationwide, including many big cities, affirmatively reported zero incidents. “You can’t move what you can’t measure; without accurate reporting we don’t have a real sense of how widespread hate crimes are and what needs to be done to address bias in society,” Greenblatt said. “It is incumbent on police departments, mayors, governors, and county officials across the country to tally Please see FBI, page 7

Exciting News: The Jewish Federation of

Greater Pittsburgh’s 2019-2020 Wechsler Fellowship: Building Pittsburgh’s Next Jewish Leaders is now accepting nominations! We are asking the Pittsburgh Jewish community to identify candidates to be considered for this extraordinary opportunity. Please nominate one or more outstanding individuals from your organization, synagogue, community, or social networks. Ideal candidates are between the ages of 22 and 45, who are passionate, innovative and inspired to lead our Jewish community into the future! The Wechsler Fellowship explores the work of our Jewish community organizations, cultivates new leaders, and strengthens the sense of connection among Jewish young professionals from the diverse religious, professional and educational backgrounds that form the fabric of the Pittsburgh Jewish community. Start thinking about individuals to nominate for the 2019-2020 cohort. Nominations will open on December 10, 2018 and close on January 7, 2019. Visit shalompittsburgh.org/wechsler-fellowship-nomination to submit your nomination(s). To learn more about the program or with questions, contact Sara Spanjer at sspanjer@jfedpgh.org or 412-992-5237.



NOVEMBER 23, 2018 5

Headlines Pittsburgh cohort reflects on JFNA General Assembly in Tel Aviv — LOCAL — By Lauren Rosenblatt | Special to the Chronicle


he Jewish Federations of North America General Assembly, a conference for sharing ideas and connecting with colleagues from Federations around the continent, included a few additional perks for members of the Pittsburgh cohort this year. Because of the conference’s location in Tel Aviv, Pittsburgh participants enjoyed a mission trip through the country prior to the assembly, a visit to the Knesset and personal time with Israeli political leaders including Knesset member Tzipi Livni and head of the Jewish Agency Isaac Herzog. This year’s conference, which took place Oct. 22-24, focused on the theme “we need to talk” to address what some say is a growing divide between diaspora and Israeli Jewry on issues such as egalitarian prayer space at the Kotel, marriage licenses, conversion laws and the recently passed nation-state law. Cindy Shapira, immediate past vice chair of the JFNA and immediate past chair of the Federation in Pittsburgh, said efforts to bring Israelis and North Americans together at events like the General Assembly help to “move the needle along.” “We have to continue this work to, in a sense, rebuild this relationship because the

dynamics have changed,” Shapira said. “It’s now not a question of building the Jewish state, but in seeing if we can work on ways to ensure that it is a Jewish state for all while respecting the sovereignty of a nation.” Looking back on the conference in an interview, Shapira mentioned two highlights from her time in Israel: a reception at the new U.S. Embassy in Jerusalem and a chance to moderate a discussion with Livni, leader of the opposition in the Knesset, about topics ranging from Israel’s relationship with diaspora Jews to the #MeToo movement in Israel. For Jan Levinson, a member of Congregation Beth Shalom who has attended several JFNA conferences in the past, the biggest benefit of the location was the speakers. “When you’re in Israel, you get [Prime Minister Benjamin] Netanyahu live, whereas in Washington, you’ll get him on the screen,” he said. To further take advantage of the location, Levinson co-chaired a mission to Israel prior to the conference. In what he described as a “not your hallelujah mission,” he helped lead about 17 Pittsburgh Jews through parts of the West Bank and to Pittsburgh’s sister city in Karmiel Misgav. During the trip, the group visited a new Arab city called Rawabbi in the middle of the desert that was still being developed. The plan, Levinson said, was to build condos, accommodations and office space,

During this season and throughout the year,

This year’s conference focused on the theme “we need to talk” to address what some say is a growing divide. attract high tech companies to the area and create “a major city that shows everyone can live together.” Levinson said the most meaningful part of the trip was a visit to the Knesset during the conference to discuss the immigration and absorption of Ethiopian Jews to Israel. The debate has been a point of controversy in recent years, concerning the Jewish status of those Ethiopians who wish to immigrate. “One soldier got up and said [his] mother’s in a horrible position because [he’s] in Israel and [his] sister’s in Ethiopia and they said [his] mother could come to Israel but [his] sister couldn’t — what’s [his] mother supposed to do?” Levinson recounted from his visit. “In order to come here, [many

Ethiopian Jews] sold everything so they’re living in a difficult situation. They’ve used all the funds and they’re anticipating coming to Israel.” CEO and president of the Pittsburgh Federation Jeff Finkelstein and senior vice president and chief development officer Brian Eglash testified before the Knesset committee in favor of increased immigration of Jews from Ethiopia. According to Eglash, the Pittsburgh Federation was one of the first organizations to offer support to the Ethiopian National Project, which focuses on absorbing Ethiopian immigrants in Israeli life, and has been at the forefront of the movement since then. “We firmly believe that the Israeli government should bring these people here,” Eglash said in an interview after the conference. “This is part of our fulfillment of the Zionist dream to bring more Jews that want to come.” Through the conference, Eglash said, participants had the opportunity to engage with the Federation’s “product” through their partners and programs in Israel — an experience that makes him proud of what Pittsburgh is already working on and motivated to do even more. “I always come back from these national meetings more inspired than ever because Pittsburgh is amazing,” Eglash said. “The last few weeks have proven that over and over again.”  PJC

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Headlines Organization benefiting veterans gets facelift — LOCAL — By Adam Reinherz | Staff Writer


ew volunteers are making an old communal program familiar again. Last month, Barbara and Sandy Zell hosted an evening dedicated to the revitalization of the Israel War Disabled Veterans foundation in Pittsburgh. The program, which was brought to the Steel City four decades ago by Sylvia Robinson, is now calling itself 412 Friends of Zahal and continues to work with the Zahal Disabled Veterans Organization and Beit Halochem as it has done for years, explained Barbara Zell. Joining Barbara and husband Sandy in shepherding the program are Molly and Justin Braver, Brad Orsini and Ella Ziff. The group, which took over for Ronna Harris Askin after she led the corps for approximately eight years, is currently working on a “tentative schedule” regarding the springtime visit of Israeli veterans. Those seeking to join the committee’s efforts are welcome, explained Zell. “The more people we have involved the better it is.” As of now, the committee is seeking people to house veterans, spend time helping at an event, host a dessert or pizza party, join a committee to plan events, donate a package to an auction, help fundraise or even write a check, said Zell. There are many ways to help, but there is also one primary reason to do so, explained Sandy Zell. “Israel is the only country that would accept us as Jews, no questions asked,” said the co-committee chair. “We are a matchbox in a football stadium, and Israel is still maintaining their democracy and freedom.” The relationship is somewhat similar to an insurance policy, he explained. “If anything would happen in our country, we have a place to go, and these are the guys fighting to make sure that insurance policy stays in place.” “These are the people who are protecting Israel,” echoed Orsini, who is the director of security at the Jewish Federation of Greater Pittsburgh. “They are protecting the homeland.” About six months after Orsini, a former

FBI: Continued from page 5

hate crimes data and report it to the FBI. The FBI can only report the data they receive. We must do more to make sure that cities report credible data.” In Pennsylvania, 1,488 agencies were eligible to report; 23 filed incident reports for a total of 78 hate crimes, representing a 28 percent increase from last year and the highest total in the commonwealth since 2007. Of the 78, 17 were characterized as religion-based, and 14 were antiJewish specifically, double the number from last year.

p Wounded Israeli veterans enjoy a visit to Pittsburgh.

Photo courtesy of Sandy Zell

p Israeli war veterans on their visit to Pittsburgh through the Israeli War Wounded Project, 1975. (seated left to right) Zeev Heffner, Yacov Israel, Aminadav Eilat, Yuval Ginat, (standing left to right) David Hannan, Pinhas Kuperman, Zvi Weber, Ron Haddad, 1975.

Jewish Chronicle Photographs, Rauh Jewish Archives at the Heinz History Center

FBI agent, came to the Federation, he was introduced to the veterans program. “I had the privilege to speak with a lot of these veterans,” he said. “As a Marine it was an honor.”

Such lasting effects were attested to by Sylvia Robinson, who established the program in Pittsburgh nearly 40 years ago, in an August 12, 1996 recording with the National Council of Jewish Women.

But the ADL has noted that caveats must be considered when looking at the numbers for the tri-state area. Of the 2,069 agencies reporting for Pennsylvania, New Jersey and Delaware, 91 percent affirmatively reported zero hate crimes, including the cities of Allentown, Newark, N.J., and Patterson, N.J. “The numbers are only as good as that which people report,” said Nancy Baron-Baer, who leads the ADL’s office in Philadelphia. She found it hard to believe that there were no hate crimes whatsoever in Allentown and Newark in the past year, for instance. She also cautioned about reading too much into the increase. “It could be that people feel more strongly about reporting incidents or that law enforce-

ment is better trained to know what a hate crime is and properly record it as such,” she said. “It could be that in reality there are no more hate crimes out there but there are good reasons causing more to be brought forth.” In addition to its online interactive hate crimes map, the ADL’s Audit of AntiSemitic Incidents tracks both criminal and non-criminal acts of bias against Jews. Like the FBI report, the latest audit also shows significant upticks in anti-Jewish activity. Whatever the numbers, Baron-Baer notes that hate crimes have long-lasting effects. “It scares an entire community,” she said. “It causes fear in that particular community beyond the one person who was targeted.” The ADL is calling on federal and state



Robinson recalled how she was introduced to the program after visiting Switzerland with her husband Donald. She remarked that if Geneva could host such a program with only a Jewish population of 5,000 then certainly Pittsburgh, with a population of 40,000 Jews, could do the same. Throughout the interview, Robinson highlighted her involvements in other communal endeavors, but saved extraordinary praise for Israel’s disabled veterans. When the first veterans arrived the initial families who agreed to host deserved a tremendous amount of credit for participating, she said, since “they had no idea what they were getting themselves into.” What those first volunteers discovered though was that it was an incredible opportunity to connect. “The last day we took them to New York for the day, and to see them off for the night, and at the airport here in Pittsburgh everybody was crying, everybody was hugging and kissing,” Robinson said in the interview. “I turned to Chantze Butler, she was one of the families, I turned to Chantze and said, ‘This is the best thing I’ve ever done in my entire life because it moved people so much.’” Robinson passed away Oct. 11, 2018. Shortly thereafter, Robinson’s daughter, Carol, received “a number of notes” from people who the mother had met and befriended because of the program. One of the messages related how an Israeli veteran had come to Pittsburgh years earlier. He had become friendly with his host family so much that the host family’s daughter visited his family when she went to Israel. Lo and behold, while the daughter was there, she fell in love with someone in the veteran’s family. They married and now live in Israel. “It’s not what the program was designed for, but it speaks to the many kinds of relationships that were made because of these visits,” said Carol Robinson. The fact that there is this renewed interest is “just a wonderful tribute to my mother’s efforts,” she added. “The same things that were meaningful to her, and the same connections, still resonate with members of our community.”  PJC Adam Reinherz can be reached at areinherz@ pittsburghjewishchronicle.org.

officials to track hate more effectively, including enacting better hate crime laws and implementing improved training for police officials. The FBI’s UCR Program was initially conceived in 1929 by the International Association of Chiefs of Police to aid law enforcement in gathering consistent information across different departments. Since 1990, when Congress passed the Hate Crime Statistics Act, the UCR Program has been responsible for fulfilling the congressional mandate to collect hate crime data.  PJC Liz Spikol writes for the Jewish Exponent, an affiliated publication of the Pittsburgh Jewish Chronicle.

NOVEMBER 23, 2018 7

Calendar entertainment with community service in a comfortable social setting. Together, they perform meaningful work within the Pittsburgh community. Contact David Chudnow at dchudnow@jfedpgh.org or 412-992-5209 for more information.

q SUNDAY, DEC. 2 Temple Sinai’s Brotherhood brunch from 10 to 11:30 a.m. will feature guest speaker Barbara Burstin on “Historic Battles Royale, with a Pittsburgh Twist”: Reform vs. Zionist; Zionist vs. Zionist; FDR: Love Him or Leave Him; the Jewish Community & Sophie Masloff; and German Jews vs. Eastern European Jews. Throughout the 20th century, those struggles played out locally and nationally. Burstin is on the faculties of the history departments at the University of Pittsburgh and Carnegie Mellon University, teaching courses on the American Jewish Experience, the U.S. and the Holocaust and the History of Pittsburgh. She has also taught courses within the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute and has spoken extensively in the community. There is a charge. Contact Todd Miller at toddprmktg@gmail.com or 412-8481082 for more information and to RSVP or visit templesinaipgh.org/brotherhood-brunch-guestspeaker-barbara-burstin. Copies of Burstin’s books will be available for purchase by check or cash.

>> Submit calendar items on the Chronicle’s website, pittsburghjewishchronicle.org. Submissions will also be included in print. Events will run in the print edition beginning one month prior to the date as space allows. The deadline for submissions is Friday, noon. q TUESDAY, NOV. 27 Blind Date with a Book, from 7 to 9 p.m., Moishe House. Do you love to read actual physical books? Are you short on space and cash? Come to a book swap with a twist. Bring a book (or two, or as many as you want). All leftovers at the end of the event will be donated. Contact moishehousepgh@ gmail.com for location information. 

The Jewish Women’s Center of Pittsburgh and the Muslim Community Center of Greater Pittsburgh in Monroeville are cosponsoring a joint program from 2:30 to 4:30 p.m. Entitled “Jewish/Muslim Women’s Writings,” the event will celebrate the voices of Muslim and Jewish women. The program will be held at the Muslim Community Center, 233 Seaman Lane in Monroeville. q MONDAY, DEC. 3



Rebecca Gilbert, author of “It’s Easy to Start Eating Vegan” and founder of the website “Yummy Plants,” will teach how to find and make vegan versions of popular dishes. The South Hills Healthy Living: A Blueprint for Tomorrow series continues from 7 to 8:30 p.m. at the Jewish Community Center South Hills, 345 Kane Boulevard. Visit southhillsjewishpittsburgh.org.

The Young Adults (22-45) will hold an I-Volunteer event to make welcome baskets for Ronald McDonald House while watching the Steelers game at Jewish Residential Services Goldberg House from 1 to 4 p.m. I-Volunteer is a collaboration organized by the Jewish Federation’s Volunteer Center. The Friendship Circle partners with Shalom Pittsburgh, Repair the World and Moishe House to encourage young adults of all abilities to combine

The annual South Hills Lights Community Chanukah Festival will be held at 5:30 p.m. for the Giant Menorah Lighting & Mega Gelt on the corner of Potomac and Belrose avenues followed at 6 p.m. by a Chanukah Musical Laser Light Show and festivities at the Hollywood Theater, 1449 Potomac Ave. in Dormont. There will be live music, latkes, doughnuts, prizes and festivities for all ages. There is no charge. RSVPs will be appreciated at chabadsh.com, 412-244-2424 or mussie@ chabadsh.com. For easy parking, enjoy a complimentary shuttle from the Dormont Pool parking lot to the festival. See website for more parking options. Project of Chabad of the South Hills and co-sponsored by South Hills Jewish Pittsburgh. Please see Calendar, page 9


NOV. 27 AND NOV. 29

The Pittsburgh OASIS Intergenerational Tutor Program is seeking volunteers (50+) to tutor in Pittsburgh and Woodland Hills School Districts in grades K-4. An hour a week can change a child’s life. Trainings from 9 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. at 411 Seventh Ave., Suite 525 (Duquesne Light Building) downtown Pittsburgh. All training, materials and clearances are provided free of charge. For more information or to register, contact John D. Spehar, OASIS Tutoring Program director at (412) 393-7648 or by email at jdspehar@oasisnet.org. OASIS is a program of Literacy Pittsburgh. q WEDNESDAY, NOV. 28 JGrads Pittsburgh and Jewish Law Students Association will present The Menorah on Trial, a re-enactment of the landmark First Amendment case concerning the display of a menorah at Pittsburgh’s City-County Building. Attorneys Jon Pushinsky and Charles Saul will present opposite sides of the case from 1989, which ended in the Supreme Court and granted permission for the menorah to be displayed. Open to the university community and the general community as well. Registration is required at jewishpittsburgh.wufoo.com/forms/menorahcase. The event will begin at 6 p.m. at the Teplitz Memorial Moot Courtroom, Barco Law Building, 3900 Forbes Ave. Contact 412-952-4702 for more information. There is no charge.

8 NOVEMBER 23, 2018

q WEDNESDAY, DEC. 12 Squirrel Hill AARP invites all to come and join in for an afternoon of companionship and fun at 1 p.m. at Congregation Beth Shalom, 5915 Beacon St., at the corner of Shady Avenue. Following the business meeting, entertainment will be provided by Julie Harris, singer/ guitarist of Pittsburgh. Julie will entertain with a mixture of show tunes and pop standards. The chapter is requesting all to bring a new, unwrapped toy, which will be donated to patients at UPMC Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh. Latkes and punch will be served; there will be several door prizes. Contact Marcia Kramer, president, at 412-731-3338 for more information.



Calendar Calendar:


Continued from page 8

Chabad of the South Hills at 1701 McFarland Road will offer Kids in the Kitchen: International Kosher Cooking from 4 to 5:30 p.m. for ages 3-11; 3-year-olds must be accompanied by a parent, grandparent or caregiver. Each class includes the cooking segment, fun and hands-on learning on various Jewish topics and one-on-one Hebrew Alef-Bet and reading, catered to each child’s level. Register before Nov. 30 at chabadsh.com/jkc. Contact mussie@chabadsh.com or412-344-2424 for more information. There is a charge.

q TUESDAY, DEC. 4 Chabad of the South Hills will hold a Chanukah lunch for seniors at noon that will include a holiday program, kosher lunch with hot latkes and a presentation by Gallagher Home Health on home health and home care for helping seniors in their homes to stay home safely. Preregistration is suggested at 412-278-2658 or barb@chabadsh.com; there is a $5 suggested donation. The building is wheelchair accessible. An evening celebrating the work of Chabad of Squirrel Hill will feature Chassidic rapper Nissim Black who will share his incredible story, The Religious Rapper: A Miraculous Journey Out of the Darkness. Rabbi Yanky and Devorah Leah Davidson will be receiving the Community Lamplighter Award. Wine and cheese reception at 7 p.m., presentation at 7:30 p.m. at Chabad of Squirrel Hill, 1700 Beechwood Blvd. Visit chabadpgh.com for cost and tickets. q SATURDAY, DEC. 8



South Hills Jewish Pittsburgh will hold the South Hills 7th Night Chanukah Celebration and Menorah Lighting from 5:45 to 9 p.m. at the South Hills Jewish Community Center, 345 Kane Blvd. The evening will include dinner and activities for the family. Visit southhillsjewishpittsburgh.org/chanukah18 for more information.

Shalom Pittsburgh, a project of the Jewish Federation of Greater Pittsburgh, will hold the 13th annual Vodka Latke from 7:30 to 11 p.m. at HIP at the Flashlight Factory, 831 West North Ave., for young adults (22-45). Contact Meryl Franzos at mfranzos@jfedpgh.org or 412-992-5204 for more information or visit jfedpgh.org/vodka-latke for registration and pricing information.

Temple Emanuel welcomes Phil Terman for its Bagel Bites & Brunch at 10:30 a.m. Terman is a Jewish poet and professor at Clarion University. His latest poetry collection is “Our Portion: New and Selected Poems.” His works, including two of his popular collections, “The Torah Garden” and “Rabbis of the Air,” are filled with Jewish themes.

Most recently, his work “Leaves from Aleppo” was produced onstage at the City of Asylum on the North Shore. The event is free, but RSVPs are requested at templeemanuel@ templeemanuelpgh.org. Call 412-279-7600 for more information.  PJC

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NOVEMBER 23, 2018 9

Life & Culture New exhibit brings out the best of nation’s first 70 years

 Exhibit consultant Ido Aharoni explains the Balfour Declaration to Dahlia Fisher, director of external relations at the Maltz Museum of Jewish Heritage.

 Carolyn Goodman Whittington of Shaker Heights reads about Golda Meir, Israel’s fourth prime minister and first female prime minister. CJN photos / Bob Jacob

— TRAVEL — By Bob Jacob | Cleveland Jewish News


LEVELAND — For its entire 70-year existence, Israel has been attacked — by its neighbors, its enemies, the

media, the academic world and so on. But Israel is about much more than conflict, it’s about a start-up nation that has become a world leader in many areas. That’s the message former ambassador Ido Aharoni brought to the Maltz Museum of Jewish Heritage as a consultant for “Israel: Then & Now,” an exhibition that

received its world premiere Sept. 23 at the Cleveland museum. Aharoni, a professor at New York University in New York, a 25-year veteran of Israel’s foreign service and Israel’s longestserving consul-general in New York, shared his thoughts about Israel and the exhibit with a gathering of about 100 people during a

preview event on the exhibition’s opening day. “To the best of my knowledge, it’s the largest and only exhibit that was created on the year of Israel’s 70th birthday,” Aharoni said. “It provides people with an experiential opportunity to have exposure to the original Please see Exhibit, page 28

This week in Israeli history — WORLD —

Moshav Alonei Abba, southeast of Haifa. The child of Holocaust survivors, he sells more than 1.5 million albums.

Items provided by the Center for Israel Education (israeled.org), where you can find more details.

Nov. 23, 1584 — Sultan, Safed and synagogues

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Nov. 24, 1938 — British debate Palestine

During the 1936-1939 Arab Revolt, the House of Commons holds a debate on the future of Palestine. Colonial Secretary Malcolm MacDonald says that British troops are restoring the crown’s authority, that the British Mandate is fulfilling its promise to pave the way for a Jewish national home and that Palestine cannot accommodate more than a fraction of the Jews who might try to escape Nazism.

Nov. 25, 1938 — Kfar Ruppin founded

Kibbutz Kfar Ruppin is founded in the Beit Shean Valley as part of the “Tower and Stockade” movement, which uses prefabricated materials for rapid construction of defensible settlements.

Sam Rosenberg • INPAX Founder • Grew up in Squirrel Hill • US Marine • Bodyguard for PM Netanyahu and other Israeli dignitaries

Ottoman Sultan Murad III, in the midst of strengthening the Muslim nature of his empire, orders an investigation into the increase from three to 32 synagogues in Safed, where only seven mosques operate.


Nov. 26, 1949 — Artzi born

Folk-rock singer-songwriter Shlomo Artzi is born on


Nov. 27, 1914 — JDC founded

The American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee is founded with the merger of the Central Relief Committee and the American Jewish Relief Committee in response to the distress caused to Jewish communities in Europe and Palestine by World War I.

Nov. 28, 1945 — Land report issued

The British Land Transfer Committee issues a report on the effectiveness of restrictions on Jewish land purchases under the 1939 White Paper for Palestine. The investigatory panel, which includes no Zionists, finds that Arabs willingly continued to sell land to Jews.

Nov. 29, 1947 — U.N. Approves Partition

On a vote of 33-13 with 10 abstentions, the U.N. General Assembly passes Resolution 181, which calls for the partition of Palestine into separate Arab and Jewish states linked by an economic union. It follows the recommendation of the majority of the 11-nation U.N. Special Committee on Palestine. PJC Items are provided by the Center for Israel Education (www. israeled.org), where you can find more details.



An Open Letter From the Jewish Federation of Greater Pittsburgh Dear Community Members and Friends, The tragic attack of October 27 saddened and horrified us. With our hearts still heavy with the burden that this anti-Semitic act of terror inflicted on Jewish Pittsburgh, we moved immediately to help. Fortunately, thanks to your amazing past support, our Jewish Federation and Jewish institutions all over Pittsburgh already had the resources in place to start strategizing, organizing and providing help even as the tragedy unfolded. Since then, the Jewish Federation of Greater Pittsburgh has been singularly focused on three goals: 1. Helping the families of victims, those who were injured, and the many people traumatized by the attack 2. Bringing the community together to mourn and to begin the healing process 3. Making sure we remain safe and secure We want to update you briefly on the progress around these goals, because you make this work possible. On the first goal, we provided families of victims and those injured with an emergency cash grant to help them cover immediate expenses. A high-level committee, with pro bono legal, banking and accounting oversight, has now been put in place to determine the uses of the dollars donated to the Federation’s Fund for the Victims of Terror. Since holding the community gathering at Soldiers & Sailors Memorial Hall to bring our community together, we have been working to communicate ways to help, to collect and distribute donations of goods and services, to organize the many volunteers and to support service providers, including rabbis. On the security front, we have coordinated the response with the numerous first responders involved (police, FBI, Homeland Security and many others), bolstered Jewish organization security with Federation-funded private guards, answered continual calls for security help and begun to assess and to address long-term security concerns. While the Jewish Federation has played a key role to coordinate our community’s efforts, two of our beneficiary agencies have joined us in taking leadership roles during this crisis—the Jewish Community Center of Greater Pittsburgh (JCC) and Jewish Family and Community Services (JFCS). The JCC provided a myriad of services over the past several weeks: offering a safe space for families waiting for news about their loved ones; providing grief counseling; offering space for first responders and Jewish organizations without access to their own buildings; and reaching out to Jewish groups throughout the city, from rabbis to teens to parents with young children. JFCS sprang into action to offer support for victims’ families, emergency trauma support, emotional support, grief counseling and countless other community-support services. We hope you are enormously proud of all our Jewish institutions. Our three day schools supported their students, the Jewish Association on Aging and Riverview Towers helped seniors, Jewish Residential Services helped adults with mental illness, The Edward and Rose Berman Hillel Jewish University Center helped college students and all our synagogues pitched in to make a safe space for community members to meet and to help each other cope. Nothing we can do will bring back those we have lost. Nothing we can do will make our beloved community the same as it was the day before this horrific act of hate and anti-Semitism. Everything we do now, however, can help people who are currently struggling to heal, bring us together, make everyone feel safer and unite us all in a common purpose—to build an even stronger Jewish Pittsburgh. Thank you for all you do to make us stronger together. Sincerely,

Jeffrey Finkelstein CEO


Meryl K. Ainsman Chair of the Board


NOVEMBER 23, 201811


The Jewish Women’s Renaissance Program (JWRP) Pittsburgh cohort, along with groups from Australia and New Jersey, show their support from Israel.

Elected officials, actors, Pittsburgh athletes, the families of victims and the community gathered at Point State Park on Nov. 9, 2018, for the Rally for Peace, to support the City of Pittsburgh and demonstrate that hate has no place in our community or around the world.

Mayor Bill Peduto spoke at the interfaith community vigil about the tragedy and how the Pittsburgh community must stand together against hate.

On Oct. 27, 2018, our community faced a life-shattering tragedy. The following day, the community came together for an interfaith vigil to honor the victims from Tree of Life*Or L’Simcha, Dor Hadash and New Light congregations.

Worcester Polytechnic Institute rallied support and held a vigil in Worcester, Mass., days after the tragedy involving the Tree of Life *Or L’Simcha, Dor Hadash and New Light congregations.

Since the tragedy, Pittsburgh has received support from across the country, Israel and around the world. This message of support came from a school in Israel.

12 NOVEMBER 23, 2018


At the Oct. 30 Pittsburgh Penguins game, Pittsburgh Police Chief Scott Schubert and officers Anthony Burke and Mike Smidga, who were injured in the tragedy, participated in the ceremonial puck drop with Federation leaders Sue Berman Kress and Bob Silverman.

Federation young adults, staff and students from The Neighborhood Academy collected donations, before a Pittsburgh Penguins game, for the Jewish Federation’s Fund for the Victims of Terror.


Pop star Kesha dedicated her downtown Pittsburgh concert as a unity event, donating all proceeds to the Jewish Federation of Greater Pittsburgh’s Fund for the Victims of Terror.

Diller Teen Fellows lit candles at the Karmiel vigil to honor the victims of the tragedy involving the Tree of Life*Or L’Simcha, Dor Hadash and New Light congregations.

Construction workers unveiled a “Stronger Than Hate” banner in front of the construction site of the new Jewish Residential Services facility in Squirrel Hill, at Murray and Forward avenues.

Former Pittsburgh Federation employee and current CEO of the Jewish Federation of Cincinnati, Shep Englander, hand-delivered a generous donation to support the Fund for the Victims of Terror. The cards shown were made by Cincinnati’s day school students.

On Boston Common, representatives of Combined Jewish Philanthropies of Greater Boston stand in solidarity with Tree of Life*Or L’Simcha, Dor Hadash and New Light congregations.

Senator Todd Young and the Jewish Federation of Greater Indianapolis show support in the wake of the mass shooting in Pittsburgh’s Squirrel Hill neighborhood.


At least one polling place near the Tree of Life Synagogue handed out these special stickers, featuring the now-familiar Pittsburgh “Stronger Than Hate” image.

Volunteers at an I-Volunteer event baked hundreds of desserts for the Solidarity Shabbat Dinner and the 27 first-responder stations across Pittsburgh that responded to the shooting.

Students from Eitan School in Jerusalem made signs of support for Pittsburgh after the tragedy.


jewishpgh.org NOVEMBER 23, 2018 13

Join us on Tuesday, DECEMBER 25th 2018 for the Jewish Federation of Greater Pittsburgh Volunteer Center’s 18th Annual

For more information, please visit jfedvolunteer.org/mitzvah-day. Registration will be open Nov. 27 – Dec. 18. Sign up early. Sites fill quickly! Questions? Contact David Chudnow at dchudnow@jfedpgh.org or 412.992.5209. Volunteer Center Chair Adrienne Indianer Volunteer Center Committee* Shoshi Butler • Shira Burg • Yoni Fischer • Stuart Harris • Alan Himmel • Lynn Snyderman • Kelly Waldman * As of 10.22.2018

presented by*

14 NOVEMBER 23, 2018



Life & Culture An all-American kosher Thanksgiving — FOOD — By Linda Morel | Special to the Chronicle


’ve always loved Thanksgiving because of its inclusive nature. Every American is invited to the table of this homey, harvest celebration. And it’s a holiday that’s particularly friendly to the laws of kashrut. Think of turkey, cranberry sauce, candied sweet potatoes, stuffing and fall vegetables. They can readily be made without dairy products, which kosher observers do not eat with turkey, Thanksgiving’s traditional main course. But there are several delicacies often included on Thanksgiving menus — and almost always photographed on glossy pages of November issues of food magazines — that pose challenges to kosher cooks. Mashed potatoes are the first thing that comes to mind. My husband David cannot enjoy Thanksgiving dinner without a hearty helping of mashed potatoes. My usual recipe is loaded with butter and whole milk, which gives them their fluffy texture. Margarine, the go-to fix, isn’t rich enough to produce creamy results. However, onions and garlic sautéed in a generous amount of olive oil create light and tasty mashed potatoes that are cholesterol free. There are other Thanksgiving favorites that are equally challenging — recipes that

require creativity and finesse to achieve sensational results. I’m thinking of cornbread dressing and pecan pie. With some refined tweaking here and there, no one’s taste buds will miss cream, butter or cheese. As a matter of fact, these perky pareve Thanksgiving foods are as palette pleasing as their dairy-laden counterparts, so stunningly pictured in gourmet magazines. Creamy Mashed Potatoes | Pareve

Serves four

Yukon Gold potatoes are mandatory in this recipe because of their soft texture. Their yellow color looks like butter was added. 4 medium size Yukon Gold potatoes 1 medium-large onion 1/4 cup olive oil plus 1 tablespoon Kosher salt to taste 3 garlic cloves White pepper to taste

Fit a food processor with a metal blade. Reserve. Peel the potatoes, rinse them under cold water and cut them into eight chunks apiece. Place them in a medium-sized pot and cover them with water. Move to the stovetop and heat the pot over a medium-high flame. Once the water comes to a boil, continue boiling until the potatoes are very soft, about 20 minutes. As the potatoes cook, dice the onion and

then chop it fine. In a medium-sized skillet, heat the oil over a medium flame. Move the onion to the skillet and sprinkle it with salt. Reduce the flame to low. Sauté, stirring occasionally. After a few minutes, press the garlic cloves through a garlic press. Add that to the onions and stir to combine. When the potatoes are well softened, use a soup ladle to remove a ladle of potato broth. Pour it into a heatproof bowl. Reserve. Drain the potatoes in a colander. Spoon them into a food processor. Using a spatula, scrape the onion-garlic mixture, including the oil, into the food processor with the potatoes. Add a tablespoon of potato water and some white pepper. Process the potatoes until pureed. Pulse on and off, making sure there are no lumps and the consistency is creamy. Add more salt, if needed. If the potatoes need to be loosened slightly, add a little more potato water, a teaspoon at a time. Serve immediately. Cornbread | Pareve Yield: 16 squares

This popular American recipe can be served as a side dish or it can become the main ingredient in cornbread dressing (recipe follows).

Nonstick vegetable spray 1 cup yellow cornmeal 1 cup flour 2/3 cup sugar 3 1/2 teaspoons baking powder 1/2 teaspoon salt 1 cup apple cider 1/3 cup corn oil 1 egg

Coat a 9-inch-square baking pan with nonstick spray. Preheat your oven to 400 degrees. In a large mixing bowl, add the cornmeal, flour, sugar, baking powder and salt. With a spoon utensil, stir these dry ingredients until well combined. Pour in the apple cider. Using an electric beater, mix briefly until moistened. Pour in the corn oil and beat on a low speed until combined. Using a spatula, scrape down the bowl. Add the egg and beat again on low until incorporated. Scrape the bowl with a spatula and move the dough to the prepared baking pan. Bake for 20 minutes, or until the top turns golden and a cake tester or toothpick Please see Food, page 25

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NOVEMBER 23, 2018 17

Headlines Los Angeles fire races through the heart of a Jewish community — NATIONAL — By Gabrielle Birkner | JTA


OS ANGELES — The Woolsey Fire, which began late last week and engulfed a massive swath of Southern California, has killed at least two people, burned nearly 100,000 acres and ravaged hundreds of structures — including several touchstones of Jewish life in this city. Three historic Jewish sleepaway camps and a Jewish retreat center, all nestled in the Malibu hills, were consumed. A Jewish community day school lost three of its buildings, and several synagogues have smoke damage. Many families, including that of the new rabbi at Malibu Jewish Community & Synagogue, lost homes and nearly all their belongings. Here are some stories about what was lost and what remains.

‘Where I forged my path as a Jewish person’

Tens of thousands of Jewish youth, spanning three generations, have spent summers at Camp Hess Kramer and its smaller sister camp, Gindling Hilltop. By late Saturday,

p A view of the Ilan Ramon Day School in Agoura, Calif., after the fire.

Photo courtesy of Yuri Hronsky

with the Malibu hills near the campgrounds aflame, more than 200 current and former campers, together with their families, gathered for an impromptu Havdalah service to

mark the end of the Sabbath. “Even though we didn’t know the extent of the damage, we knew we had been affected — and we knew the community was in need


Please see Fire, page 24

The Jewish Community Foundation of Greater Pittsburgh presents its annual



of some healing,” said Ari Kaplan, the assistant director of the camps, both of which are affiliated with the Reform Wilshire Boulevard Temple. At the service, held at the Temple’s West Los Angeles campus and watched via live stream by some 13,000 people, “it was mostly singing, people holding each other — we passed around a box of tissues,” Kaplan said. “People wanted to share what camp meant to them.” In the days since, the extent of the damage has become clear: It’s catastrophic. The fire burned roughly 90 percent of the campgrounds, destroying all but two cabins there, Kaplan said. Rebuilding is likely to be a years-long process, but the camp is already scouting temporary locations for next summer. So, too, is the Shalom Institute, a popular Jewish retreat center and home to the 67-year-old JCA Shalom summer camp. The grounds were all but razed in the fire. “We’re moving fast, and hope to make some announcement [about a venue] before Thanksgiving,” said Rabbi Bill Kaplan, the institute’s executive director. “It’s heartbreaking, but we’re camp people — that’s what we do.”

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18 NOVEMBER 23, 2018



Headlines — WORLD — From JTA reports

Man in balcony shouts ‘Heil Hitler’ during Baltimore performance of ‘Fiddler’ A man shouted “Heil Hitler, Heil Trump” from the balcony during intermission of a performance of “Fiddler on the Roof ” in Baltimore, causing some in the audience to run out in panic. The Nov. 14 audience at the Hippodrome Theatre in Baltimore believed that the incident was the start of an attack, the Baltimore Sun reported. Audience member Rich Scherr, who works for the Sun, told the newspaper that he “was waiting to hear a gunshot.” He said he had trouble concentrating on the second half of the show. “Fiddler on the Roof ” is the story of a Jewish family facing persecution in tsarist Russia and is based on Yiddish short stories by Sholem Aleichem. Security police escorted the man out of the theater. He reportedly was not arrested. “We apologize to those patrons who were affected by this unfortunate incident. Our venue has a proud tradition of providing shared experiences to people from all walks of life, right in the heart of this wonderfully diverse city, and we intend to continue that

tradition in the spirit of bringing people together, not dividing them,” Hippodrome officials said in a statement. Howard Libit, executive director of the Baltimore Jewish Council, told the newspaper that it was equivalent to shouting “fire” in a theater, or shouting “bomb.” The newspaper noted that the incident took place three weeks after the attack on a Pittsburgh synagogue that left 11 worshippers dead. The show began a six-day run in Pittsburgh on Nov. 20. Miami Beach Jewish center vandalized with swastika and upside-down cross A swastika and an upside-down cross were painted on a decorative post in front of a Jewish center in Miami Beach, Fla. A security guard at the West Avenue Jewish Center discovered the vandalism early Nov. 14, the local ABC affiliate News 10 reported. An upside-down cross is sometimes a symbol of satanism or the occult. The center houses a Jewish day school for boys, a rabbinical college and an Orthodox synagogue — Congregation Beth Medrash Levi Yitzchok Lubavitch. The official name of the building, which is several stories tall, is the Haim and Gila Wiener Florida Lubavitch Headquarters. Miami Beach police spokesman Ernesto Rodriguez told the Miami Herald that detec-

tives are reviewing surveillance video with the staff to gather more information. Jewish students tell school board in Connecticut that they don’t feel safe Students at a high school in Connecticut say they have been subject to anti-Semitic hate and do not feel safe. Some 50 students at Amity High in Woodbridge, many of them Jewish, attended the Board of Education meeting last week and cried as they spoke about the abuse they have suffered at the hands of fellow students involved in a school sport. While the students said that anti-Semitism has grown at Amity High in recent years, they charged that school officials have done little to deal with it, the New Haven Register reported. The examples presented by the students included statements such as “These Jews deserve to die” and “we are the Nazis,” as well as swastikas found drawn and carved on surfaces throughout the school. Also, the homes of Jewish families in the area have been vandalized and egged. Students also said they did not feel safe wearing Jewish symbols or shirts bearing the names of Jewish organizations. Following the meeting, the interim superintendent of schools, James Connelly, released a letter to the school community in which he pledged that the district “will not tolerate this type of harassment and

will investigate and take disciplinary action against students who demonstrate unacceptable behavior. We will also cooperate and coordinate with the local police department in some of these investigations.” The letter said the district would partner with religious leaders and groups like the Anti-Defamation League to address the issue. Officers injured in stabbing attack at eastern Jerusalem police station Four Israel Police officers were injured last week in a stabbing attack at a police station in eastern Jerusalem. The alleged stabber came to the entrance of the police station in the Armon Hanatziv neighborhood and attacked three of the officers with a knife. Other officers shot and seriously injured the attacker, according to the Israel Police. A fourth police officer was injured by the live fire. The officers and the assailant were taken to Shaarey Tzedek hospital in Jerusalem for treatment. Security was increased in the area following the attack, and security officials searched the area for other would-be attackers. The Armon Hanatziv neighborhood, also known as East Talpiot, is located on the seam between western and eastern Jerusalem, and was the site of several Arab stabbing and car-ramming attacks in recent years.  PJC

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NOVEMBER 23, 2018 19

Opinion — EDITORIAL —


hanksgiving is a secular national holiday, but it seems to be almost universally celebrated by American Jews — not only because we are Americans, but also because the notion of being grateful and expressing that gratitude is deeply embedded in Judaism. We imagine that each year at Thanksgiving dinners many express thanks for such things as good health and their families. However, less than a month after the shock of the Shabbat morning massacre at the Tree of Life building, what are we Pittsburgh Jews supposed to make of Thanksgiving? What should we be thankful for? Should we even be thankful at all? As difficult as it may seem, we should try to be thankful, for that is what Jewish wisdom teaches us in the aftermaths of the repeated assaults on the Jewish people over the millennia. Recognizing that even in the midst of tragedies we still have things to be grateful for keeps us balanced and helps give us the strength to progress toward resuming our normal lives and building our futures.

So, this Thanksgiving, what should we be thankful for? Of course, there is no single answer to this question, for it is intrinsically a question that each individual should and must struggle to answer themselves. Certainly being grateful for our health and families is still appropriate. Many have expressed immediate thanks to our officials

and official agencies — to first responders, to those who will provide ongoing support over the coming months, to our Jewish agencies and to our local government. Others have expressed thanks to our non-Jewish friends and neighbors — clergy and lay leaders of other religions, or leaders and ordinary people in other ethnic groups. Still others

are grateful for the outpouring of sympathy and support from around the country and around the world. Yet there may be one thing that everyone in this community can agree on: We should be grateful for each other, for our Pittsburgh Jewish community. Many are fond of saying that the Pittsburgh Jewish community is special — that we get along, and work together, and care for each other more than many other communities. In the wake of Oct. 27, we have real evidence that this is true, and not just a proud myth. For people did pull together and support each other in ways that brought comfort and provided material assistance. Many people from the national media and national organizations who came to Pittsburgh immediately after the shooting and the following two weeks remarked on how cohesive our community was, and how unusual that was in today’s world. We do have our differences, of course — political, religious and in how we prioritize things. Those disagreements can resume a bit later, hopefully still in a positive, constructive fashion. But for now, for this Thanksgiving, let us all pause for a moment and be thankful for each other.  PJC

After pain and sorrow, renewal and rebirth will come Guest Columnist Seth Adelson


f you have been to the Dead Sea within the last five years, you may have noticed a relatively new phenomenon: As many as 6,000 large sinkholes have appeared close to the current shoreline. As Congregation Beth Shalom’s Journey of the Spirit group was on the bus a few weeks ago we saw many of them. They are the result of evaporation, abetted by consumption of water by both Israel and Jordan. Areas from which the water has receded have underground pockets of salts, and when it rains, fresh water dissolves those salts, leaving empty holes under the exposed area, and then the ground above collapses. Something has become quite clear to me in recent weeks: We all respond to grief differently. Some respond by wailing. Some respond in anger. Some respond in panic. Some respond by clamming up. Some respond by calling out. Some respond by pointing fingers. Some respond with a call to action, and some retreat. Some of us fell into sink-holes three weeks ago, and have not yet emerged. And some of us are still waiting on the loose ground on top, not knowing when it will collapse. Some of us have already crawled out onto safe, stable land. The Jewish mourning customs are the best around for managing grief, however it

20 NOVEMBER 23, 2018

is expressed, because they acknowledge that our responses to grief reflect our personalities. One of the customs of shiva is that, when visiting avelim, mourners, in their homes, we do not address them directly; we wait for the bereaved person to speak first. That way, we give space for the avelim to do what’s best for them. If they want to talk, they talk. If they want to sit there in silence, then we let

celebrate, to eat festive meals, to sing joyful songs. Those who are in shiva do not mourn publicly on Shabbat by wearing torn clothing or sitting on a low seat or receiving guests in their homes. But is it permissible to cry? The Rama says the following: If it brings one pleasure to cry on Shabbat, such that the sorrow may be lifted from his heart, then one may cry.

The richness of Jewish life continues even after tragic events.

them do that, and sit by patiently. If they want to cry, they cry. If they want comfort, we hold them tight. If they want to be alone, we leave them alone. It is within that framework of allowing the avel to fashion his or her own response to grief that we acknowledge their humanity. On the Shabbat following the attack, my colleague, Rabbi Daniel Yolkut at Congregation Poale Zedeck, brought his community a halachic note from the Shulchan Aruch. It addresses the question of whether or not one may cry on Shabbat. Shabbat is, of course, a day on which we are happy; we gather with friends and family to

Crying in pain may bring you pleasure, and we give space to the avel to cry as necessary on Shabbat. I’m thinking here of Rosey Grier singing on the classic children’s album from 1972, “Free to Be You and Me”: “It’s alright to cry Crying gets the sad out of you It’s alright to cry It might make you feel better.” How many of us have felt really wounded, and found that a good cry made at least some of the pain go away? That has certainly happened to me, and perhaps the Rama as well. There is a hopeful note about the Dead


Sea sinkholes: Some of them have trapped fresh water that has run off the mountains and are now little ponds surrounded by new growth, new trees and bushes and reeds. As you drive by, these appear as little oases in the otherwise barren landscape. And that looks to me like hope. On our final day in Israel, we visited the Israel Museum in Jerusalem. Among the items we saw were Judaica from all over the world. And I remembered that the destruction of the Second Temple by the Romans in 70 CE did not bring Judaism and Jewish life to an end. Rather, it fundamentally changed it, and strengthened our tradition for the millennia of dispersion that lay ahead. And the Jews responded by carving ornate arks and covering them with gold leaf in Italy, and crafting spice boxes in the shape of windmills in Holland; by producing polished-silver Torah tikkim (the Sephardic cabinets that house Torah scrolls) in India, and illuminated Esther scrolls in Iran, and bowls made of crystalline sugar for wedding celebrations in Afghanistan. The richness of Jewish life continues even after tragic events. Just as our people responded to destruction and dispersion with artistic creativity and continuing to embrace the richness of Jewish life, so too will we. While there will always and forever be a before and after in the Pittsburgh Jewish community, I am certain that the after will be even more vibrant. We will continue to grieve in all the ways that we do, and we will never forget those whom we lost. But we will emerge stronger together.  PJC Rabbi Seth Adelson is the senior rabbi at Congregation Beth Shalom in Squirrel Hill.


Photo by Michail_Petrov-96/iStockphoto.com

A Thanksgiving like no other

Opinion The memories of my grandmother Guest Columnist Rachel Greenspan


atching someone you love slowly forget everything about their life is hard to witness. So as my grandmother’s memories continue to fade, it’s important for us keep the good memories of her alive. As I sit in a nursing home on a rainy Sunday afternoon visiting my grandmother, I listen to the nurses read chapters from her book out loud to the residents. The book is a family memoir that my grandmother published nine years ago. It should be noted that we’re in the dementia wing, so most residents, including my grandmother, don’t understand what’s being read. But the nurses still read, and it seems to offer a sense of calm and normalcy. My bubbie, Sissy Carpey, was a writer. During the years when I lived in New York City as a young professional, she would remind me of how, when she was younger, she would dream of running off to Manhattan to write full-time. A marriage to my grandfather and a baby by 21 brought to life a different dream: one of love and family. I grew up around the corner from my grandmother, so she felt like a second mom. The love that she showed me and her six other grandchildren, as well as her three children, was immeasurable. Although my grandmother started a family at a young age, she was determined to build a meaningful career. She was proud to be a working woman and spent time in public relations while writing on the side. She won several awards and published articles in The Washington Post. But she always wanted to write a book. It was the final professional goal she had. Ever the optimist, she spent several years in her mid-70s completing a memoir about her family’s escape from Russia. She worked hard on that story, pouring all of her energy into the writing. And because of that, she was different by the end of those years. A little more tired, a bit more forgetful. We called it aging. During one of my visits around 2009, as she was putting the finishing touches on her memoir, I was sitting in her office, surrounded by dozens of printed pages and a mountain of sticky notes. She was not an organized woman, so I was used to the clutter. But on this day, her office felt like a tornado had ripped through it. She was clearly tired, as I assume many writers and artists are after they finish a piece of work that took years to complete. As she was attempting to organize her space, she started talking about life and told me that her biggest fear was not losing her energy, but losing her mind. I told her that she was a sharp woman and had nothing to worry about.

Shortly after the book was finished, she was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer. Although typically a fatal diagnosis, she was able to receive immediate surgery and survived. But while her body recovered, her mind never did. She gradually experienced increased memory loss and forgetfulness. I remember one moment when she couldn’t remember something and kept scolding herself, “Bad Sissy, bad Sissy.” She would wake up in the middle of the night confused, looking for the “babies” in the cabinets of her kitchen. She started to sleepwalk and would fall back asleep on the floor of my grandparents’ office. She would repeat herself endlessly and struggle with name and face recognition, unsure of which grandchild I was. She knew that I was one of hers, but didn’t know which one. As things got worse and she needed more attention, she started receiving around the clock care at home and then transitioned to a nursing home. Today, my grandmother is suffering from late-stage Alzheimer’s disease, which has slowly progressed over the past seven or so years. She doesn’t recognize her family or know who she is. She wears diapers and can hardly speak. Sometimes she’ll say things like “I’m scared,” but doesn’t follow it up with anything else. There are some bright moments. If we sing a song that triggers something in the depths of her mind, her eyes light up a little. If we give her a hug, she seems to appreciate the affection. If we say the name “Al” (her husband) or “Norman” (her brother), she looks at us with slight awareness. But the reality is that we’re strangers to her and she would be heartbroken if she understood her current state. As she said to me a handful of years ago, losing her mind was one of her biggest fears. Back in the nursing home, after the aides finish reading an excerpt from her book, I push her wheelchair to the dining room to feed her dinner. I share updates on my life, hold her hand and then say goodbye. I lean in to give her a hug and she touches her forehead to mine. Words, she doesn’t have. But the natural instinct to be affectionate, she does. Watching someone you love slowly forget everything about their life is hard to witness. So as my grandmother’s memories continue to fade, it’s important for us keep the good memories of her alive. Remembering the unconditional love she showed her children and grandchildren. The “every day is a beach day” mantra she lived by. Her smile, warmth and ability to find the good in almost every situation. This is what I will hold onto.  PJC Editor’s note: Sissy Carpey passed away on Nov. 6, surrounded by her family. She was 85. Rachel Greenspan is a program manager with Techstars, a global startup accelerator program. She previously founded an online community called Quarterlette.com for millennial women. November is Alzheimer’s Awareness Month.


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NOVEMBER 23, 2018 21

Headlines Windows: Continued from page 1

the synagogue. Flannery, who had served as an art teacher in the Pittsburgh Public Schools for 10 years, embraced the opportunity. “The only guidance I was given was to include the words ‘kindness, love and hope,’” said Flannery. “At first I was like this is going to be kind of tough. I knew it was going to be important to her, the store and the community and I need to do this in a respectful way and I need to do it right.” In seeking advice, Flannery prayed. “I don’t even know where to start, but I have these three words to go from,” she recalled. Flannery turned to Google and discovered iconic images of the Star of David, a tree of life and a dove. The artist then decided to “put a heart around each symbol because it felt like that love needed to be there, and it was almost like a hug of a heart around each one.” Finally, she wanted to incorporate Hebrew and reached out to friends on Facebook. A former student suggested Squirrel Hill resident Danny Shaw as someone able to help. Shaw, who rejected praise for his assistance, lent expertise on spellings and letterings. Flannery arrived at the Squirrel Hill store on Sunday, Nov. 6 at 5 a.m. and began applying acrylic to the panes. Once the Star of David was placed within the heart and the word “love” was painted both in English

p Melissa Lysaght, right, and Nicole Flannery utilized the Shady Ave. facing windows at Starbucks in Squirrel Hill to demonstrate solidarity with the Jewish community. Photo by Adam Reinherz

and Hebrew, the image began making sense to passersby. People were “just knocking on the window or giving me a thumbs up, and I’ll never forget this one man who kind of stopped, and I think he was shocked by it at first,” said Flannery. “He was just walking by, going wherever he was going, and he just turned to see, because here I am painting. He stops and he looks, and he put his hand on his heart” and reached toward the window. The man “started crying, and he had to walk away,” said Flannery. “I think at that moment I realized this is God working through me for whatever reason, and I just feel so blessed and so honored to be able to do that.”

After Flannery completed the three windows, she took a picture of the work and posted it on Facebook. About 10,000 people reacted. Comments came in from California, Florida, Montreal, South Africa and Israel. Squirrel Hill resident David Knoll juxtaposed the image with photos from Kristallnacht, the Nov. 9, 1938, German pogrom in which thousands of Jewish-owned businesses, homes and schools were vandalized and scores of Jews were murdered in a single night. In his Facebook post, Knoll wrote of his father’s childhood experiences in Cologne, Germany. The irony between Starbucks’ windows and the shattered storefronts of old is too much to ignore, explained Squirrel Hill resident Ivan Frank.

What happened at Tree of Life is “surreal. There are a lot of people who have not grasped it,” said Frank, a frequent patron of the store. The windows are “also the same thing.” At Tree of Life, “we had an incident just like a neo-Nazi would carry out, and here we got a reverse with the windows. It wasn’t a Jew who did it, it was a non-Jew who did it.” To Frank’s point, neither Flannery nor Lysaght are Jewish, and prior to posting the images online, neither one realized the Kristallnacht connection. “I talk to my kids about it. There are people from all over the world sharing this and that’s so amazing and positive,” said Lysaght. Among those who have reached out to Flannery are people interested in using the images. Flannery said she would be happy to have it available for use, with the proceeds benefiting families of the victims, but “needs some guidance on what to do.” “I would really love to be able to reach out to our Jewish community and have it done locally,” she said. Lysaght, who throughout the experience has received support from corporate supervisors, including a phone call from Starbucks president and CEO Kevin Johnson, said she has no plans of removing the paintings anytime soon. “As far as I’m concerned,” she said, “they can stay there.”  PJC Adam Reinherz can be reached at areinherz @pittsburghjewishchronicle.org.

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22 NOVEMBER 23, 2018


11/19/18 4:17 PM


Headlines Tour: Continued from page 1

pertaining to financial and social services was delivered in a private and accessible way. The JCC’s centrality became evident early on as this was somewhere families sought reunification and support, said Allen. “Normally we wouldn’t pick the JCC,” because “it offers too much easy access” to “spontaneous helpers” and other avoidable disruptions, but “what worked with this event was meeting the needs of the community,” said Elam. “Victims felt safe here.” Schreiber, the JCC’s president and CEO, told visitors that “if you don’t have relationships” established prior to an emergency “that’s not good. You cannot build relationships on the ground.” It “wouldn’t have worked without collaborations,” echoed Golin, president and CEO of JFCS. There is no roadmap for this, but “we were able to be patient with each other.” “We didn’t trip over each other,” said Schreiber. This was “not a time for turf wars.” After hearing such advice, attendees were ushered onto busses and driven along a scenic tour of Squirrel Hill. Locations such as Pittsburgh Allderdice High School, Congregation Poale Zedeck and Blue Slide Park were pointed out by Jimmy Ruttenberg, JCC board chair and the designated tour guide, who shared childhood memories of Silberberg’s Bakery, Lenny Silbermann and basketball games.

Upon approaching the corner of Shady Avenue and Wilkins Avenue, Matthew Keller, JFCS board chair — in a moment exemplifying the complicated personal and professional relationship to the tragedy — explained to passengers that his introduction to the Oct. 27 event came by way of hearing his wife yell at their 10-year-old daughter for running indoors while holding scissors that morning. When asked why she would do something so dangerous, the child explained she had heard extremely loud noises outdoors, became scared and retreated inside. Keller lives less than 200 yards from the Tree of Life building. “This literally happened in my backyard,” he added. After the busses parked, passengers exited and headed toward makeshift memorials outside the building. Brad Orsini, the Federation’s director of security, then escorted everyone indoors to a room, which since the murders had been restricted to FBI agents, crime scene investigators and members of the Jewish burial society. Orsini credited the many nameless individuals who for weeks inspected, studied and cleaned countless spaces within the synagogue. Rabbi Elisar Admon, who with Rabbi Daniel Wasserman headed the chevra kadisha, noted 30 volunteers spent 35 straight hours scrubbing pews, carpets and adjacent areas according to Jewish tradition. “It’s painful for me to be in this space,” remarked Rabbi Hazzan Jeffrey Myers, spiritual leader of Tree of Life*Or L’Simcha, from

After the busses parked, passengers headed to the memorials. beside a bullet-ridden lectern. “What do I do with people who never want to come in here again?” Unlike the Maccabees who restored the Holy Temple, “I am charged with healing broken souls.” “We will rebuild and be back here because we are a tree of life,” he pledged. “Some branches are cut, but we’ve been here for 154 years and with God’s good graces we will be here another 154 years.” Jewish communal professionals Rabbi Ron Symons and Rabbi Danny Schiff then read the names of the 11 Jews killed on Oct. 27 before reciting the Mourner’s Kaddish. On the ride back to the JCC, JCC Association President and CEO Doron Krakow said nothing could have readied him for what transpired inside the chapel. “I wasn’t prepared. I wasn’t prepared for the rush of emotion. l wasn’t prepared for the pain that was pouring out of the people who helped us by presiding over a service,

by enabling us to participate directly in the mourning process, the grieving process,” he explained. “I wasn’t prepared to sit in a synagogue sanctuary defiled by bullet holes and physical damage and carnage, and have it simply be the latest in a long horrific history of anti-Semitism and brutalism and hate. “I wasn’t prepared and I’m not sure how I might have been, but I was very proud to be sitting there with leaders from across Canada and the United States who came here to take a stand and to take a broken community into its embrace,” he added. After eating a kosher boxed lunch, participants shared some final impressions. “This is definitely a story of sadness and grief and horror,” said Jeffrey Finkelstein, the Federation’s president and CEO. But “it’s also the story of a resilient and strong community. This Pittsburgh community, this Pittsburgh Jewish community was incredibly strong before, and we are stronger than ever.” Krakow agreed. “I think that of all the communities I’ve had the good fortune to come to know over now 25 years in national organizations in the Jewish world, I don’t know that I found one as remarkable as this one,” he said. “It is tightly knit. … It is incredibly proud of itself and the people that are a part of it. I think for the people who have gathered from across the field to be exposed to a community like Pittsburgh will be a source of pride.”  PJC Adam Reinherz can be reached at areinherz @pittsburghjewishchronicle.org.

Help us Document the Events of the Past Weeks The attack at the Tree of Life synagogue building promises to be one of the most consequential moments in the history of Pittsburgh. With the support of the Pittsburgh Jewish Chronicle, the Rauh Jewish History Program & Archives is actively collecting original documentation of the event and its aftermath. The public is encouraged to submit digital materials — everything from photographs of vigils, to voice messages and texts on the day of the attack, to posts on Facebook and other social media, and to stories from the past week — through a special web portal https://www.heinzhistorycenter.org/collections/rauh-jewish-historyprogram-and-archives/responding-to-the-tree-of-life-tragedy To donate physical materials, please contact Eric Lidji at eslidji@heinzhistorycenter.org or 412-454-6406.



NOVEMBER 23, 2018 23

Headlines Fire: Continued from page 18

In the meantime, the institute has set up shop in office space provided by the Jewish Federation of Greater Los Angeles. The federation has been hosting daily calls with affected Jewish organizations and arranging support services from trauma counseling to legal assistance. Michelle Rosenbloom-Quirsfeld, who attended Hess Kramer in the 1980s and later became a counselor there, said the destruction of the Malibu campgrounds is devastating. It’s a major loss, she said, noting Hess Kramer was where she first learned to sing and pray as a Jew, “to respect Shabbat,” and to do traditional Israeli folk dances. “It’s not a loss of life, but it’s a loss of part of my identity,” said Rosenbloom-Quirsfeld, now 46 and a schoolteacher in Northern California. “It’s where I forged my path as a Jewish person.”

‘Like a kibbutz’

Yuri Hronsky was watching the local news on Friday when cameras panned to fires burning at the Ilan Ramon Day School in Agoura Hills. “It’s as powerless as you can feel,” Hronsky, who has led the Jewish community day school since 2010, said of seeing the campus in flames. Hronsky and the school’s board members surveyed the damage on Tuesday. Three

buildings at Ilan Ramon — housing administrative offices, a computer lab and bathrooms — were destroyed. The classrooms remain intact, but most of their contents will have to be purged due to smoke. “There was immense sadness,” he said, “and immense gratitude.” Sadness for the school community, whose members would have to endure destruction and displacement. Sadness for what had been lost, including memorabilia from Hronsky’s 18 years at the school. And gratitude for the firefighters who kept the flames from engulfing the whole campus. Even the class pets — rabbits, birds and turtles — survived the ordeal. Nate Akiva, a board member, said Ilan Ramon — a school formerly known as Heschel West, and since renamed after the late Israeli astronaut — is “like a kibbutz,” small and tight-knit, a place where everyone feels like they have a stake in one another’s well-being. When some school families were forced to evacuate, others took them in. Akiva said he was relieved that the damage wasn’t more extensive and confident that the school would rebuild what was lost. His daughter, a first-grader at the school, has needed more reassurance. “She was very nervous that her art projects were gone, that her school supplies were gone, that they didn’t have a place to go,” he said. Where they will go now is not yet clear, though Ilan Ramon has fielded multiple offers from synagogues and other schools

offering space while its campus is being cleaned and rebuilt. To that end, the school launched a GoFundMe campaign and is selling “IRDS Strong” T-shirts to help offset any out-of-pocket costs associated with getting the campus up and running. Hronsky said the school is hoping to reopen in a temporary location as soon as Friday, “so we can spend Shabbat together.”

‘Everyone is so aware of what’s important’

The Lodmer family seders are like no other. For one, there is always a theme — “Star Wars” one Passover, “Harry Potter” another. “Jeopardy!” The “Wizard of Oz.” “Name That Tune.” The dinner guests wear costumes, read from bespoke Haggadahs that weave together the evening’s more contemporary theme with that of the age-old story of the Jewish Exodus. These epic seders would take place, year after year, at the home of Emily and Sheldon Lodmer. The couple put down roots in the seaside city of Malibu, California, more than four decades ago, when property there was still relatively affordable. It’s where they raised their children, Abby and Zack, and welcomed grandchildren. It’s where family and friends and friends of friends gathered for holidays. Last weekend, the house burned to the ground. “I keep finding myself thinking about the little things,” Zack Lodmer, 38, who works at the Los Angeles Jewish federa-

tion and founded Om Shalom, which offers Jewish yoga programming. “Parking in the driveway, the way the grass felt on my feet, the way the sunlight hit the mirrors, the way the books were positioned on the shelf — the general hum of energetic family life.” When the roads reopen, the family plans to travel together to what’s left of their home. “I think that’s when it will really hit us, but it will also be a powerful bonding moment,” said Abby Lodmer, 42, a comedian in Seattle. “We’ve seen pictures. But we haven’t seen the mangled remains of our childhood, the mangled remains of the lives my parents built there from nothing.” The Lodmers are among at least 13 families at the Malibu Jewish Center & Synagogue whose homes were destroyed. Rabbi Michael Schwartz has been tending to his congregants there — even as his own house went up in flames. On his way out of the burning town, Schwartz, who has led the synagogue since February, packed the congregation’s five Torahs into his Toyota Camry. The fire came within 20 feet of the synagogue, but the building was not consumed. “One member said to me, ‘Now we really get what Sukkot’ is about — to experience the reality that everything is fragile and transient, that we have to be grateful and count our blessings,” recalled Schwartz, referencing the harvest holiday when Jews build temporary outdoor shelters. “Everyone is so aware of what’s important.”  PJC


A MEDICAID PLANNING SUCCESS STORY This is one in a series of articles about Elder Law by Michael H. Marks., Esq. Michael H. Marks is an elder law attorney practicing at Marks Elder Law with offices in Squirrel Hill and Monroeville. Send questions to michael@marks-law.com or visit www.marks-law.com.

Arlene lived with a daughter in a different state. Her dementia had progressed so she couldn’t really participate in her own care anymore. She needed nearly 24/7 attention. The daughter called her Pittsburgh siblings to say that she could no longer handle taking care of mom; that she was flying mom to Pittsburgh in two days to become their responsibility. Surprise! None of the children in Pittsburgh could care for mom themselves, and given Arlene’s minimal ability for self-care, she needed nursing home care, not just personal care home or assisted living placement. Luckily, the family arranged a spot for mom at a local nursing home. When mom arrived, they went straight from the airport to the ER for an exam, which found no acute health problems, then on to the nursing home. The challenge however was how to pay for Arlene’s care but still protect as much as possible of her remaining savings for any additional care that she might need – and protect the kids themselves. She didn’t have much, but it was more than the tiny amount she was allowed to keep for Medicaid to pay for her. Without expert planning help, the kids would

24 NOVEMBER 23, 2018

just spend down each month until there was virtually nothing left. Adequate care for Mom’s needs might even cost them directly and threaten their own financial security. With my Medicaid planning advice, they got a much better result.

My investigation first turned up old medical records that we argued showed that daughter brought mom to all her appointments, received all the medical instructions, shared the same address and was in fact Arlene’s live-in caregiver. We also showed that mom actually had serious health needs and really There were potential roadblocks to be needed full-time care. We also dug up a overcome for Medicaid eligibility, including handwritten note between the children that the fact that Arlene had gifted a good chunk we argued constituted a sufficient written of money to her kids in recent years. family agreement as required under the rules. Mom also paid her caregiver daughter every Finally, to spend down but not lose month for her care, but without a required everything, we helped Arlene make a gift to written family compensation agreement in her children – yes, a gift that was permitted place. Finally, she had way more money in the under a properly executed strategy – after bank that she was allowed, under the rules. she was already in the nursing home - of a I was able to help Arlene and her family solve little more than half her remaining savings. these problems and accomplish the goals. The first problem was handled pretty easily: we researched and documented that the gift was more than five years earlier, and therefore irrelevant. The second problem, regular payments to her daughter, was harder. Medicaid presumes that any transfer to a family member is a gift, made without adequate consideration, which causes a penalty period of ineligibility. To rebut the presumption and show that there was no gift, you ordinarily need to show a written family care agreement for compensation, that predates the payments. Without any such formal agreement, we had to prove that valuable services were received, and that the payments were not gifts.

We then helped her use a Medicaidcompliant immediate annuity that turned her remaining savings into income for her during the following months. The result? After a number of months (and a lot of dialogue), Medicaid agreed and began to pay the nursing home for mom, while the kids retained about half of mom’s assets for her, to use for her additional costs of care, such as private duty care in the nursing facility when needed. The children’s own financial protection was secured too. At Marks Elder Law, we help people every day with issues like these. I invite your questions and feedback. Please let me know how I can help you and your family.

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With the increasing costs of long-term care, having the help of a legal professional when planning for your family’s future can help you make better decisions that can result in keeping more of your money. We help families understand the strategies, the benefits, and risks involved with elder law, disability and estate planning.

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Life & Culture Food: Continued from page 15

inserted into the center of the cornbread comes out clean. Cool to warm and cut into squares. It is preferable to serve cornbread warm, although it is fine to serve it at room temperature. The recipe freezes well. Cornbread Dressing | Meat or Pareve Yield: 15 squares

Prepare the cornbread for this recipe from the recipe above or, if you are pressed for time, you can buy cornbread instead of making it from scratch. Nonstick vegetable spray 1 (9-inch square) baking pan of cornbread, about 7-8 cups 4 tablespoons olive oil, or more, if needed 1 large onion, chopped 1/2 red bell pepper, diced 4 celery stalks, diced 2 garlic cloves, chopped fine Kosher salt to taste Black pepper to taste 1/2 teaspoon chili powder 1 teaspoon cumin powder 1 egg 1 cup chicken or vegetable broth at room temperature 2 tablespoon fresh parsley, chopped

Using your fingers, crumble the cornbread

and reserve. Coat a 9-by-13-inch baking pan, such as Pyrex, with nonstick spray. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. In a large skillet, heat the oil on a low flame. Sauté the onion for 2 minutes. Add the red pepper and celery. Sauté until they are wilting, about 3 minutes. Add the garlic, salt, black pepper, chili and cumin. Stir until the garlic and spices are fragrant. Remove the skillet from the flame. In a large mixing bowl, whisk the egg until beaten. Add the broth and whisk again. Fold in the cornbread and stir until moistened. Spoon in the sautéed vegetables and parsley. Stir until combined. Move the cornbread mixture to the prepared pan. Bake for 30 minutes, or until the cornbread dressing is sizzling and the edges are turning brown. Serve immediately. Recipe can be cooled to room temperature, refrigerated and reheated. Serve cut into squares. Pecan Pie | Pareve It’s not Thanksgiving without pecan pie on the sideboard. Here is a pareve version, which actually tastes better the day after it’s baked. Crust: 7 tablespoons refrigerated non-dairy margarine 1 1/4 cup all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting the counter 1/8 teaspoon salt 2 teaspoons sugar 3 tablespoons ice water Nonstick vegetable spray

Cut the margarine into seven slices, each a

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tablespoon in size. Cut each slice into quarters. Spread these cubes in one layer on a plate. Cover with plastic wrap. Place the margarine in the freezer until frozen solid, about 1½ hours. Fit a food processor with a metal blade. Measure out the flour, salt and sugar. Stir them with a spoon until combined. Pour this mixture into the food processor bowl. Add the margarine and pulse on and off for 45 seconds. The dough will be crumbly. Drizzle in the water a teaspoon at a time as you pulse the food processor on and off until the flour mixture sticks together, appearing like dough. Lift the dough from the food processor and form it into a ball. Wrap the ball in plastic wrap and refrigerate it for 30 minutes. (During this 30 minutes, prepare the pecan pie filling recipe below.) Once the dough is ready, spray a regular 9-inch pie pan (not deep dish in size) with nonstick spray. Toss a couple of tablespoons of flour on the counter and spread the flour around. Use some of it to flour the rolling pin. Remove the dough from the refrigerator. With your hands, flatten it into a disk. Dust the top and bottom of the disk with some flour. Using a rolling pin, roll out the dough into a circle a little larger than the pie pan. Tear off a sheet of aluminum foil and cover half of the surface of the dough circle with foil. Fold the dough over the foil. Lift the dough from the counter and place it over half of the pie pan. Remove the foil and arrange the dough evenly over the pie pan. The ends will be scraggily. With your fingers, create a nice-looking ridge around the edge of the pie

pan. If there’s too much dough in places, you can cut it off using sharp scissors. Reserve. Pecan Pie Filling

Yield: eight to 10 slices 1/2 cup (1 stick) of non-dairy margarine at room temperature for 10 minutes 1 cup sugar 2 eggs 1/2 cup flour 2 tablespoons apple cider 2 cups of chopped pecans, which equals an 8-ounce bag

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Cut the margarine into eight slices and place them in a large mixing bowl. Add the sugar. Using an electric mixer, beat until well combined, about 1-2 minutes. Add the eggs, one at a time, scraping the bowl after each addition. Add the flour and cider and beat until well combined. Add the pecans and mix on low speed for 30 seconds or so. Turn off the mixer. Using a spatula, continue mixing in the pecans until they are evenly incorporated. Spoon the pie filling into the prepared pie pan and spread around evenly. Bake for 30 to 35 minutes, until the crust is golden brown. The filling will not appear congealed. It will solidify as it cools. Let the pie cool to room temperature before slicing it.  PJC Linda Morel is a food columnist for the Jewish Exponent, an affiliated publication of the Pittsburgh Jewish Chronicle.

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NOVEMBER 23, 2018 25




Making the case for Esau, but embracing Jacob

Shear/Fischgrund: Howard and Jackie Shear of Fox Chapel are delighted to announce the engagement of their daughter, Margo Brittany, to Justin Tyler, son of Susan Fischgrund and the late Mark Fischgrund of Lido Beach, New York. Margo is a communications manager at the University of Pittsburgh, and has a Bachelor of Arts degree in broadcast journalism from the University of Maryland. Margo’s grandparents are Sam and Belle Shear of Squirrel Hill and Henry and Harriette Leff of Monroeville. Justin is an IT product manager at Dick’s Sporting Goods, and has a Master of Science in industrial engineering from the University of Miami. Justin also recently obtained his Professional Engineering (PE) license. Justin’s grandparents are Regina Fischgrund of Wantagh, New York; the late Julian Fischgrund and the late Marvin and Millicent Stark. A November 2019 wedding is planned in Pittsburgh.

Bar Mitzvah


ears ago, a college classmate provocatively announced that he planned to name his first son “after the most maligned figure in the entire Torah: Esau.” Let’s consider Esau’s defense. After we are introduced to Esau as Isaac’s favorite son for his hunting prowess, we are immediately taken to the fateful scene in which Jacob is cooking lentil soup and Esau comes home exhausted from the hunt. The hungry hunter asks for some food, but Jacob will only agree to give his brother food in exchange for the birthright. Who is taking advantage of

personification of the anti-Jew. In fact, my college friend had good reason to name his son after Esau. So, why are our Sages so critical of him? I would suggest our analysis overlooks something central in Esau’s character. Yes, there are positive characteristics of Esau to be found in many Jews across the Diaspora. Many are aggressive, self-made people who weep when they meet a long-lost Jewish brother from Ethiopia or Russia. They have respect for their parents and grandparents, tending to their physical needs and even reciting — or hiring someone to recite — the traditional Mourner’s Kaddish for a full year after their death. Financial support and solidarity missions to the State of Israel, combined with their vocal commitment to

Esau hardly seems worthy of the official censure

Noah Isaac Levitt, son of Karen and Lee Levitt, will become a bar mitzvah on Saturday, Nov. 24 at Temple Sinai. Grandparents are Paula and Marvin Levitt of Dayton, Ohio; Irene Seiden of blessed memory; and Peggy and Robert Seiden of Myrtle Beach, South Carolina. Noah’s bar mitzvah fundraising tikkun olam project supports Save a Child’s Heart.  PJC

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26 NOVEMBER 23, 2018

Rabbi Shlomo Riskin Parshat Vayishlach Genesis 32:4-36:43

of Jewish history as the personification of the anti-Jew. whom? Is not a cunning Jacob taking advantage of an innocent Esau? Then there is the more troubling question of the stolen blessing. Even without going into the details of how Jacob pretends to be someone he’s not, Esau emerges as an honest figure deserving of our sympathy. After all, Esau’s desire to personally carry out his father’s will meant that he needed a long time to prepare the meat himself. Indeed it was Esau’s diligence in tending to his father that allowed enough time to pass to make it possible for his younger brother to get to Isaac’s tent first. Surely, Rebecca must have realized the profound nature of Esau’s commitment to his father, for she masterminded Jacob’s plan. On his return from the field, Esau realizes that Jacob has already received the blessing originally meant for him. His response cannot fail to touch the reader. Poignantly, Esau begs of his father: “‘Have you but one blessing, my father? Bless me, even me also, O my father.’ And Esau lifted up his voice and wept.” But it is the beginning of Vayishlach that clinches our pro-Esau case. Jacob finally returns to his ancestral home after an absence of 20 years. Understandably, he is terrified of his brother’s potential reaction, and so in preparation, Jacob sends messengers ahead with exact instructions as to how to address Esau. Informed of the impending approach of Esau’s army of 400 men, he divides his household into two camps so that he’s prepared for the worst. But what actually happens defies Jacob’s expectations: Esau is overjoyed and thrilled to see him. The past is the past. Thus described, Esau hardly seems worthy of the official censure of Jewish history as the


Jewry and Israel, reflect a highly developed sense of Abrahamic (Jewish) identity, just like Esau seems to have. But when it comes to commitment to Abrahamic (Jewish) continuity, to willingness to secure a Jewish future, many of our Jewish siblings are found to be wanting — just like Esau. Undoubtedly, one of the most important factors in keeping us “a people apart” and preventing total Jewish assimilation into the majority culture, has been our unique laws of kashrut. Refusing to break bread with our non-Jewish work colleagues and neighbors has imposed a certain social distance that has been crucial for maintaining our identity. But Esau is willing to give up his birthright for a bowl of lentil soup. Hasn’t the road to modern Jewry’s assimilation been paved with the T-bone steaks and the lobsters that tease the tongues lacking the self-discipline to say no to a tasty dish? Like Esau, the overwhelming majority of Diaspora Jewry has sold its birthright for a cheeseburger. Esau’s name means fully-made, complete. He exists in the present tense. He has no commitment to past or future. He wants the freedom of the hunt and the ability to follow the scent wherever it takes him. He is emotional about his identity, but he is not willing to make sacrifices for its continuity. Primarily, it is on the surface, as an external cloak that is only skin-deep. That’s why it doesn’t take more than a skin-covering for Jacob to enter his father’s tent and take on the character of Esau. Indeed, Esau is even called Edom, red, after the external color of the lentil soup. Esau has no depth; he is Mr. Superficial!  PJC Rabbi Shlomo Riskin is the chief rabbi of Efrat.


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Headlines Exhibit: Continued from page 10

narrative of Zionism. … Zionism — from its very, very inception — was a forthcoming, inclusive, opportunistic national movement that meant to liberate the Jewish people. “And the achievement of Zionism is not being celebrated enough because it has been overshadowed by Israel’s problems and Israel’s geo-political hardships. So, Israel became synonymous with conflict and tension and bloodshed throughout its 70 years of existence, and the story of the achievements of the state of Israel was hardly heard.” Aharoni noted that when Israel was founded in 1948, David Ben-Gurion knew the state immediately would be attacked, so he established the Israel Defense Forces. He rounded up 50,000 men, but had no navy, no air force and no army corps that was about to face six Arab nations with 800,000 well-trained, wellequipped soldiers. Life magazine — the most important magazine in the world at the time, he said — sent two reporters to cover the war. In the May 31, 1948, issue, “the creation of the only Jewish state in the world wasn’t important enough to give us the cover,” Aharoni lamented. “The cover is some Hollywood starlet (Kyle MacDonnell) as we are buried inside the magazine.” Three weeks into the war, the two reporters wrote an opinion piece. “Neither time nor history or geography stand by Israel,” they opined. “Israel does not

have the support of the Soviet Union. Israel does not have the support of the United States. And Israel doesn’t have the support of Great Britain.” So, they concluded “this experiment is doomed to fail.” Today, Israel boasts a population of nearly 9 million and has gone from no exports to one of the strongest economies in the

The exhibit, which runs through May 12, 2019, heads to Miami after Cleveland.

world, Aharoni said. “Those countries that urged the suffocation of Israel’s economy are lagging far behind,” he pointed out. “However, something very bad happened to us along the way. Our lingering conflict with our neighbors forced us to constantly respond to their allegations, to constantly defend our

actions … to constantly explain to the world why we are right and the other side is wrong.” Israel is home to 7,500 start-up companies and has nine research universities, including six ranked in the top 500 in the world. “Israel was labeled about 10 years ago as a start-up nation,” Aharoni said. “We have many start-ups, but Israel is really way more than a start-up nation. Israel is a ‘can-do’ nation.” The exhibit, which runs through May 12, 2019, is the brainchild of Milton Maltz, co-founder of the museum, with his wife, Tamar. During a visit to Tel Aviv, they stayed on the top floor of a hotel, during which time he looked out and came up with the idea. “I saw the beach, which was crammed with young people,” he said. “Then I saw skyscrapers … and the traffic was bumper to bumper. I said, ‘My gosh, this is like New York,’ and I remember Israel because I’m 89 years old. I go way back, when there was swamp, when there was desert and it was difficult, and there was less than 100,000 Jews there. You know what, we’ve got to compare what Israel was like then and now – and that was the beginning of how this thing occurred.”

The exhibit, designed by Gallagher and Associates from Washington, D.C., features milestone moments, historic images, interactive media and film to share Israel’s story. Displays include the Balfour Declaration; Israel Independence; Camp David Accords; Israeli culture; Israeli technology; Israeli medical and science; actress Gal Gadot; astronaut Ilan Ramon and former Prime Minister Golda Meir. “The most fascinating part was finding the right balance,” Aharoni said. “People sometimes have a notion that the conversation about Israel has to be narrow and one-dimensional and has to center around Israel’s problems and this is very typical of Israelis and people that know Israel very, very well. “But this exhibit was designed to appeal to people who don’t know much about Israel. It tells the story without avoiding the problems — but it tells the full story, so its strength is in its context and really creates a new context for the discussion.” Next stop after Cleveland: Miami.  PJC Bob Jacob is the managing editor of the Cleveland Jewish News, where this article first appeared.

Dor Hadash relocates to Rodef Shalom Congregation Dor Hadash, one of the three congregations victimized by the anti-Semitic massacre at the Tree of Life building on Oct. 27, has relocated to Rodef Shalom Congregation. Dor Hadash, which was

housed at Congregation Beth Shalom in the immediate aftermath of the attack, began holding services at Rodef Shalom last weekend, according to Ellen Surloff, president of Dor Hadash.  PJC

The Amen Corner

A Prestigious Organization of Pittsburgh Tradition since 1870 We wish to express our sincere condolences on the loss of lives at the Tree of Life Synagogue, and our support and best wishes to the Tree of Life congregation, our law enforcement and first responders, and all friends and neighbors who have been affected by this recent tragedy. Amen Corner PO Box 1474 Pittsburgh, PA 15230


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Obituaries KATZ: Jacob (Jake) Katz, 91, of Mt Lebanon, formerly Munhall, on November 15, 2018, after a well-lived and very rich life. Predeceased by his beloved wife, Estelle, of 60 years, parents Louis and Freda, and brothers Harry (Mary), Ken Morris (Doris) and Saul (Phyllis). Loving and proud father of Owen (Brenda), Linda and Curtis (Mary). Loving and proud Pap Pap to granddaughters Marissa, Emily and Sarah (Karen). Born and raised above his father’s shoe repair shop in the Depression era melting pot of the Woods Run section of Pittsburgh’s North Side. After graduating from Oliver High School, in 1945, where he won, among other things, the Unselfish Service Award (his “easy manner and hard work will make him succeed in whatever the future holds for him”), Jake joined the Navy and was stationed in Hawaii at war’s end. He went on to study electrical engineering at the University of Pittsburgh, becoming one of the founding members of an engineering students’ club called PEx. From 1950 to 1956 Jake traveled the country working on electrostatic precipitators for ResearchCottrell. It was, during those years, he first saw Estelle at a dance in New York, followed her across the dance floor in an effort to convince her to dance with him, and thereafter to marry him. They settled back in Pittsburgh (Munhall) where he went to work for U.S. Steel at its Duquesne Works. After eight years he returned to the air pollution control field, becoming one of the country’s pre-eminent experts in the operation of electrostatic precipitators and authoring in 1979 “The Art of Electrostatic Precipitation” that is an industrywide textbook. He and Estelle started his retirement in Florida in the early 1980s, when they took up golf, tennis and traveling, and he refined his passion for stock market investing (about which he both lectured and wrote, including authoring “Investing for Retirement”). He and Estelle returned to Pittsburgh, settling at what is now the Concordia of South Hills, becoming active in their new community, including serving as the president of the residents’ council. As with Estelle, Jake donated his body to the Humanity Gifts Registry for the training of medical students and the advancement of science. He had a matchless work ethic, was an unrepentant punster, consummate gentleman, always put others first, saw the best in everybody, and was beloved by all who knew him. A private family celebration of his life will be held at a later time. Arrangements entrusted to Anthony M. Musmanno Funeral Home, Inc.

Arnold (Donna) Naimark. Cherished stepfather of Gene, Lynn (Irwin) and Joni. Brother of the late Bernard (surviving spouse Mona) Naimark. Brother-in-law of Melvin (Marie) Schwartz. “Zayde” to several grandchildren and great-grandchildren. Also survived by nieces and nephews. Morris was an Accountant and served in the Navy during WW II. Services were held at Ralph Schugar Chapel, Inc. Interment Beth Shalom Cemetery. Contributions may be made to Trustbridge Hospice, 5300 East Avenue, W. Palm Beach, FL 33407 or Beth Hamedrash Hagodol Congregation, 810 Fifth Avenue, Pittsburgh, PA 15219. schugar.com WOLFE: Joseph Aaron Wolfe. The only bad day Joe Wolfe ever had was Monday, November 12, 2018, the day he died peacefully, at age 93, with his family beside him. Funny, gregarious and charismatic, he was one of the earliest joggers, which probably helped him outlive his father by 30 years, a tennis player and a skier. From 1958 until he retired 10 years ago, he owned Rayco, an upholstery company that was originally an auto seat cover business. But where you were really likely to find him early every morning was at Starbucks, and in the afternoon at the Jewish Community Center, where some called him “the mayor.” He was one of the oldest members in tenure and age. As his strength declined, he voluntarily gave up driving, adapted to his infirmities with humor and kindness and treated his caregivers with respect and affection. Born September 1, 1925, in Sharon, Pennsylvania, to the late Herman and Edythe Levin Wolfe, Joe was raised in New Castle. During World War II, in the Navy Officer’s Training program, he studied at Bethany College and the University of Virginia. After his discharge, he graduated from the University of Pittsburgh. Joe is survived by his loved and loving wife of almost 62 years, Toby, his children, Hilary of Chicago and Michael (Raquel Monica) of Oviedo, Spain, and his grandchildren Pablo Miles Wolfe of Oviedo, Sara Lee Wolfe of Mexico City, and Paul Grossinger of New York. Graveside services were held at West View Cemetery of Rodef Shalom Congregation. In Joe’s honor, please contribute to the Jewish Community Center of Greater Pittsburgh, 5738 Forbes Avenue, Pittsburgh, PA 15217, 412-521-8010. Joe’s family would like to thank Linda Boston and her extraordinarily devoted caregivers for adding immeasurably to Joe’s quality of life. schugar.com  PJC

NAIMARK: Morris “Morry” Naimark, age 91, on Monday, November 12, 2018. Beloved husband of 38 years to Dolores “Dee” Naimark. Beloved father of Allen (Jane) Naimark, Larry (Terri) Naimark and

Jewish Association on Aging gratefully acknowledges contributions from the following: A gift from ...

In memory of...

A gift from ...

In memory of...

Anonymous ..................................................................Morris Martin

Harry & Lisa Levinson ........................................ Miriam S. Levinson

Anonymous ................................................................. Milton Moses

Mr. & Mrs. Michael Lichtenstein ................................Jack Ginsburg

Joel Broida ................................................................... Helen Broida

Norris Lipman......................................................Ella Farber Lipman

Dr. & Mrs. Sidney Busis ................................................ Esther Busis

Susan Melnick..........................................................Anna Natterson

Paul & Margaret Clovsky.......................... Florence Meyers Clovsky

Howie & Shelley Miller ........................................... Sylvia S. Cramer

Sylvia & Norman Elias .................................................. Ida Maretsky

Arlene Murphy ................................................. Dr. William Ratowsky

Lois Engel............................................................ Florence Davidson

Alan Nathan...............................................................William Nathan

Bonnie Friedman .......................................................Ernie Friedman

Jack Ochs ...................................................................Mollie Gilberd

The Goldberg Family................................................ Dorothy Mustin

Rae Papernick............................................................... Annie Segall

Kathie & Arnie Green.......................................................Jack Green

Marc Rice ....................................................................... Fannie Rice

Ruth Haber ........................................................Edward L. Friedman

Karen K. Shapiro ...............................................Esther Levy Shapiro

Barbara Hepner...............................................Zelda Sparks Hepner

Bernard S. Shire ........................................................... Joseph Shire

Jean Horne............................................................... Sheldon Cohen

Mr. & Mrs. Richard Silk ...................................................William Silk

Sarah Kalser ...................................................................Rose Kalser

Freda Spiegel ......................................................Ethel S. Greenberg

Lawrence D. Kanselbaum ................................. Arnold Kanselbaum

Sonya Sydney ............................................................Ella Markowitz

Lawrence D. Kanselbaum ................................Charles Kanselbaum

Barbara E. Vogel ................................................. Sydney Bertenthal

Leff Family .......................................................................Rose Wyatt

Sanford Zaremberg ................................................ Robert Davidson

Harold Lenchner ......................................................Albert Lenchner

Sanford Zaremberg ............................................ Samuel Zaremberg

THIS WEEK’S YAHRZEITS — Sunday November 18: Sidney Epstein, Anna Gold, Ella Kazan, Jennie Levy, Isaac Mikulitsky, Jane Florence Pianin, Joseph Reisz, Freda Rosenwasser, Charles Saxen, Yetta Vinocur, Judge David H. Weiss Monday November 19: Bessie M. Bleiberg, Samuel B. Cohen, Louis DeBroff, Hilda B. Friedman, Jacob Gilberd, Marcella Shapiro Gold, Bella Goodman, Eileen G. Herman, Frieda K. Lawrence, Ruth M. Lazear, Sadye Lincoff, Carl Markovitz, Jacob Mendelblatt, Marcus Rosenthal, Goldie Mallinger Schwartz, Charles B. Shapiro, Julius Sheps, Ruth Esther Sheps, Morris Solomon, Bella Stein, Edna Teplitz, Celia Verk Tuesday November 20: Bernice Finegold, Bertha Fingeret, Leo Freiberg, Margaret K. Lebovitz, Martin Rebb, Edward F. Reese, M.D., Esther Rice, Bessie Rosenblum, Eugene M. Rosenthall, Louis Schultz, Dorothy Schusterman, Albert H. Snyder Wednesday November 21: Gertrude P. Elias, Leonard Enelow, Sadie Feigenbaum, Arthur Forman, Jack J. Friedman, Jacob Gold, Norma Harris, Harry Haynes, William Hersh, Milton Iskowich, Max Janowitz, Sylvia Kalmenson, Nannie Klater, Morris H. Levine, Joseph Levitt, Allan Lippock, Maurice Malkin, Rebecca K. Malt, Harris Nathan Miller, Ruth Murman, Annette Nussbaum, Harry Rosenfield, Harold J. Rubenstein, Frank Smith, Zelig Solomon, Anne C. Weiss, Max Zwang Thursday November 22: Maurice P. Ashinsky, Esther L. Bialer, Harry First, David Frank, Louis Frank, Rose Goldstein, Martin W. Hepps, Sarah Jacobson, Alvin Lichtenstul, Jennie Markovitz, Julia Monheim, Myer Palkovitz, Herbert Rosenbaum, Morris Rudick, Morris J. Semins, Dr. Jacob Slone, Shirley Starr, Morris Weiss, Regina Weiss Friday November 23: Susan Barotz, Irving I. Chick” Bogdan”, Victor Chesterpal, Marc Leon Front, Rae Kleinerman, Dr. Hyman Levinson, Fannie Malkin, Max Mallinger, Louis Menzer, Fannie Rice, Marvin L. Silverblatt, Sam Swartz Saturday November 24: Julius Berliner, Jacob Braun, Florence Meyers Clovsky, Leonard Samuels Finkelhor, Edward L. Friedman, Alfred Krause, Max Lemelman, Sarah Young Pretter, Hymen Rosenberg, Annie Segall, Lillian Shermer, Samuel Z. Udman, I. Barnes Weinstein


Find out what’s happening 24/7 @pittsburghjewishchronicle.org. Then find out what it means, each week in the . For home delivery, call 410.902.2308.



NOVEMBER 23, 2018 29

Community Stronger than hate t Employees of Indiana Printing & Publishing, which prints the Chronicle, bought the now iconic T-shirts in honor of those lost at the Tree of Life building shooting.

Photo by Jamie Empfield for Indiana Gazette

Hillel JUC In light of the tragic events at the Tree of Life building on Oct. 27, Hillel JUC’s Challah for Hunger group jumped to action. Practicing the Jewish values of tzedek and chesed, they worked together to create a fundraiser for the families affected by the shooting. In just a few short days, they raised over $7,000. They also hosted a challah braiding and baking event, bringing more than 250 students and community members to Hillel JUC to “Braid Together Against Hate.” u On November 4, Hillel Jewish University Center held its fourth annual Help Make a Difference (HMAD) volunteer event. More than 120 students participated, volunteering and doing service projects for 11 different organizations in the Pittsburgh community. The students and Hillel JUC staff were honored to have an opportunity to spread light during such a dark time in our community.

Photo courtesy of Hillel Jewish University Center

t The Shady Side Academy Senior School Tree of Life Memorial Assembly was held on Oct. 31. SSA College Counseling Director (and SSA alumna) Lauren Lieberman, who is a resident of Squirrel Hill, gave the opening remarks at the assembly.

Photo courtesy of Shady Side Academy

30 NOVEMBER 23, 2018



Community A city full of Jewish hearts Thousands of hearts surrounded by Stars of David have appeared all over Pittsburgh, gracing famous landmarks, neighborhood intersections, parks and citizens as part of a project called Jewish Hearts for Pittsburgh. Coordinated through a Facebook page, the project has drawn the support of people across the globe. (For full story, see Page 2.) Photos by Jamie Lebovitz



NOVEMBER 23, 2018 31

dax dcez

todah rabah We are heartbroken by the atrocities committed in our sacred spaces on October 27, 2018. We are overcome by the compassion, kindness and support from people of all religious faiths here in Pittsburgh and all over the world. We mourn for the lives taken from us and grieve for the families whose lives are altered forever. We are so grateful for the first responders, our local leaders and communities near and far who have stood with us.

May we all walk in the way of peace.

�ank You! Congregation Dor Hadash DorHadash.net

32 NOVEMBER 23, 2018

Tree of Life*Or L’Simcha Congregation Tolols.org


New Light Congregation NewLightCongregation.org


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Pittsburgh Jewish Chronicle 11-23-2018  

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