ME JEWISH NEWS
Incorporating The Detroit Jewish Chronicle commencing with issue of July 20, 1951
Member American Association of English—Jewish Newspapers, Michigan Press Association, National Editorial
Published every Friday by The Jewish News Publishing Co., 17100 West Seven Mile Road, Detroit 48235 Mich.,
VE 8-9364. Subscription $6 a year. Foreign $7.
Second Class Postage Paid at Detroit, Michigan
Editor and Publisher
CARM1 M. SLOMOVITZ
A Vital Drive
Sabbath Scriptural Selections
This Sabbath, the 21st day of Elul; 5725, the following scriptural selections will
be read in our synagogues:
Pentateuchal portion: Deut. 26:1-29:8; prophetical portion: Isa. 60: 1-22.
Licht benshen, Friday, Sept. 17, 6:21 p.m.
VOL. XLVIII, No. 4
Sept. 17, 1965
Eternal Vigil--In Defense of Russian Jewry
With spokesmen from all parts of the
land, representing all faiths and races, par-
ticipating in an Eternal Light Vigil on Sun-
day, the plight of Russian Jewry and the con-
cern about their cultural status will be dram-
atized in the appeal for just rights for nearly
3,000,000 of our kinsmen.
Recent returnees from Russia have indi-
cated that USSR officials are vulnerable to
criticism, that they are sensitive about the
attacks launched upon them on the score of
their attitudes towards minorities. If this is
truly the case, then the planned vigil is justi-
fied and timely.
A fact not to be forgotten is that a num-
ber of very small communities in Russia have
been granted cultural rights, have been en-
couraged in sponsoring their own schools and
have been permitted to publish newspapers
in their own dialects.
But the Jews in Russia have been re-
stricted. Only one monthly periodical appears
in Russia in Yiddish—Sovietische Heimland
—and this is not a newspaper but a critical
literary magazine. The prejudiced attitude
towards Hebrew, Yiddish, Zionism and Israel;
the decline of cultural activities among Jews
in Russia; the ridicule of circumcision which
is practiced by many non-Jews but resort to
which by Jews has instilled fear of suspicion
of religiosity among Jews — these and many
other bigoted attitudes have relegated Rus-
sian Jewry to the status of second-class
While boasting that anti-Semitism has
been outlawed under communism, Russia has
become again the inheritor of Czarist atti-
tudes that have resulted in the spread of
bigotry against Jews.
Even the horrid ritual murder libel had
been revived in some Russian quarters, es-
pecially in the Ukraine, and the fears instilled
by the continued hatred of their neighbors
among the Jews in the Soviet Union is the
cause for the concern that we are now ex-
pressing nationally through the demonstra-
tion to be enacted in Washington.
I n d e e d, it is the fear that is rampant
among Russian Jews that is most deplorable.
It is possible that if panic could be averted,
if the Jews of Russia were to express their
indignation against the practices impose d
upon them, there might be a change in atti-
tude in government circles. But the fear that
has enveloped Russian Jewry compels action
from the outside.
Very little is requested in behalf of Rus-
sian Jewry. The rights to publish their
own newspapers, to conduct Jewish schools,
to free association with Jews outside Russia
and to emigrate if and when they desire —
these are the human aspects of the appeals to
be heard on Sunday in our nation's capital.
Congregational, WSU Adult Education Courses
A new year introduces new community
programs and offers our citizens a variety of
opportunities to take advantage of educa-
tional projects sponsored by congregations,
organizations and universities.
A number of adult study courses are
being made available, and it is urgent that as
many as possible should take advantage of
It is not enough to assure a Jewish edu-
cation for all of our youth: it is equally im-
portant that their homes should be Jewishly
oriented, that the parents should meet their
children on equal ground with a knowledge
of Jewish historical happenings.
The courses offered by our congregations,
the programs provided by responsible organi-
zations and Midrasha should be given en-
couragement and should have good enroll-
In addition to the study courses provided
by our synagogues, the Hebrew and Jewish
history courses that have been included in
the curriculum of Wayne State University's
Department of Near Eastern Languages and
Literatures are equally welcome. The coming
here of a new instructor for the current year
— Eric Friedland — assures continuation
of the WSU courses in Hebrew, Jewish litera-
ture and history, and of the university's in-
terest in this important cultural area.
The only way of assuring best results for
the adult education and the WSU course is
for our citizens to enroll in them. Large en-
rollments will be indications of proper com-
munity interest in our cultural projects.
In the Middle East — a Raid to End the Raids
Apparently the culprits in the Middle East on Israeli fishermen, on settlements on the
have not learned the lesson of 1956, when Israel-Syrian border, on the peaceful farmers
the Sinai Campaign resulted in a crushing at planting time.
The fact, however, that Jordan and Le-
defeat for Nasser.
shown concern and appear to be
Now, the irresponsible elements on Is- bent on have
the El Fatah gangs from
rael's Syrian, Lebanese and Jordanian bor- intruding upon Israel's
ders again are responsible for raids into Is- seems to point to hopes peaceful
rael that have disturbed the peace in that quiet on the borders.
Israel's Prime Minister Levi Eshkol quite
It is no wonder that only the Syrians realistically admonished his neighbors to end
seem to be approving of the incursions into the attacks. An Israeli raid was part of the
Israel. If not for the Syrian attacks on Israel warning. It was justified action and it is to
in recent years, there might have been an be hoped that just as the Fedayeen were dis-
indication of an oncoming peace. But Syria rupted, so will the El Fatah elements—this
has encouraged and often sponsored attacks time by action of the Arabs themselves.
Libelous Deicide Charge: Concern of Christians
According to a Catholic theologian who
uses the pseudonym Xavier Rynne, a boycott
threat by the World Council of Churches
compelled the re-inclusion in the Ecumenical
Council agenda of the item on a declaration
of the Catholic Church on the Jewish ques-
Yet, there are reports, based on the publi-
cized agenda, that even under the current
pressures action may be postponed until next
year. This should remain the concern of the
churches everywhere, especially the Vatican,
rather than that of the Jewish communities.
The sin of anti Semitism, as the guilt was
termed by Pius XII, should remain a cause
for Christian worries, since it was of their,
not our, making.
A declaration on the Jews has been con-
sidered an act of absolving Jews of the charge
of deicide. It should at the outset have been
a statement by Christians asking for absolu-
tion for having created the unjust charge
that was the direct cause of centuries of
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Harper Reprints Singer's Works;
Commences With 'Yoshe Kalb'
Harper & Row has commenced the reissuing the novels of I. J.
Singer. It begins the interesting task by reprinting "Yoshe Kalb,"
which was such a great success on the Yiddish stage and which was a
sensation when it was first printed in an English translation by Live-
right, under the title "The Sinner," in 1933.
Maurice Samuel is the novel's translator from the Yiddish. He
had renewed the copyright on the book in 1961. Now the sensational
novel again is available in the excellent translation, and it is enhanced
by a most informative introduction by the author's brother, Isaae
"Yoshe Kalb" is the story of the pious Nahum who devoted
himself to Talmudic studies, who was dedicated to his faith but
who was infected with a lust that was created by his wife, Malka
"the spitfire," who died in childbirth but who left him with a
sense of guilt. In his subsequent wanderings, under the name of
Yoshe, he was molested by an idiotic girl, was accused of being
the father of her illegitimate child and was hounded by it in later
years. The Jewish community was split asunder by false accusa-
tions, weak defense, sentiments that became rooted in tradi-
I. J. Singer had gained 'fame as a great writer long before his
brother had attained the distinction he now possesses as the leader
among the Yiddish literati. His "Yoshe Kalb" is among the works that
emphasize the man's genius as a writer, his deep understanding of
Jewish traditions, his ability to interpret life in the Old World ghetto
communities and to portray their .peoples in graphic forms.
Isaac BasheviS Singer's introductory essay is of great significance
for an understanding of the changes that have taken palce among
Yiddish writers. He reveals that his brother wanted to separate him-
self from the tradition of Yiddish writing as far back as the late 1920s.
He tried to dissuade him. He indicated that Hebrew then was not yet
Jewry's living language, that Hebraists in Warsaw were a small group.
I. J. Singer was in ill grace with the Communists. He was de-
fended by Abraham Cahan of the Forward and he soon forgot an
urge to start writing in German.
Then I. J. began to speak to his brother I. B. about Yoshe Kalb.
The author of the introduction explains the origin of the story, tells
about the reality of the Yoshe character, describes how the author
of the great Yiddish novel constantly gathered information about
Hassidic life and he declares:
"The riddle of Yoshe Kalb, the mystery of his desires, added
a rare tension to this work. My brother was by nature a story.
teller, and I am not exaggerating when I say that he found
himself in this work, in which plot is of such importance."
Then came Yashe's success, after' some failure and difficulties;----- --),
Broadway having tried "to turn 'Yoshe Kalb' into vaudeville, with
dancing girls and songs, even though the famous Daniel Frohman, who
brought the play for the stage, fought to keep the original character of
the play." Isaac Bashevis Singer, in his laudatory introduction, eon-
tinues to point out:
"My brother continued to write with great inspiration. After "Yoshe Kalb°
came 'Me Brothers Ashkenazi,' which was received with acclaim in America,
England and many other countries. In America alone the book had no less than
11 large printings. Later my brother published 'East of Eden' and 'The River
Breaks up,' both of which Harper & Row will soon make available once again.
"There is an expression in the Talmud that goes: 'a mistake must
always be corrected.' It will be, for many of I. J. Singer's followers
and for me personally, a great satisfaction that Harper has decided
to begin its republication of I. J. Singer's work with 'Yoshe Kalb,' a
book that recalls an inspiring literary epoch and describes a way of
life that has vanished. In my humble opinion L J. Singer is a story-
teller with few peers in recent fiction, and his power in constructing
the novel is still a source of enjoyment and learning for many lovers
UAHC Pamphlet - Fights Poverty
"Issues of Conscience," a series of pamphlets issued by the Union
of American Hebrew Congregations, was enriched this week by a power-
ful brochure entitled "There Shall Be No Poor . . ." by Rabbi Richard
G. Hirsch, director of the UAHC Religious Action Center in Washington.
Filled with facts about the poverty-stricken, illustrating the urgency
to fight poverty with diagrams, charts and vital figures, Rabbi Hirsch
draws upon Jewish traditional teachings to point to the moral issue that
calls for action to end the conditions that breed social ills.
In a foreword, in which he commends Rabbi Hirsch's book, Vice
President Hubert H. Humphrey declares that "the war on poverty is a
call to action for both government and private citizens . . ."
Rabbi Hirsch's appeal draws upon Midrashic legends, cites Torah
teachings and points to Talmudic admonitions to prevent misery.