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October 31, 1969 - Image 35

Resource type:
The Detroit Jewish News, 1969-10-31

Disclaimer: Computer generated plain text may have errors. Read more about this.

Josephus Invented Masada Suicides, Scholar Insists


Historian Flavius Josephus in-1
vented the suicide of 960 Judeans
on Masada, Dr. Trude Weiss-Ros- '
'Darin, of New York University's
Institute of Hebrew Studies, told
the American Academy of Religion
at the annual meeting in Newton,
Mass. According to Josephus, one-
time commander of the Judean
forces in Galilee who, after being
defeated by the Romans at Jota-
pata had joined them as a "Quis-
ling," the last defenders of Masada
died by their own hands after the
Romans had breached and burned
one of the fortress' walls.
Interest in Masada has been
stimulated by expositions of some
of the findings on the site at major
museums and by Dr. Yigael Ya-
din's, the excavator, publications.
As against the accepted version
of the end of the Masada defend-
ers by suicide, Dr. Weiss-Rosmarin
argued that several hundred de-

15,000-Volume Library Donated to Hebrew U.


Unveiling announcements may be In-
. erted by mail or by calling The Jewish
News office, 17100 W. 7 Mile Rd., De-
roil 48235, VE 8-9364. Written an-
nouncements must be accompanied by
he name and address of the person
making the Insertion. There is a stand-
ng charge of $4.00 for an unveiling
notice, measuring an inch in depth,
and $7.50 for one two Inches deep with
a black border.



The family of the late Harry N.
Gantz announces the unveiling of
a monument in his memory at
12.30 p.m., Nov. 2, at Oakview
Cemetery. Rabbi I. Halpern and
Cantor Ackerman will- officiate.
Relatives and friends are asked to

The Family of the Late


Announces the unveiling
of a monument in her
memory 3 p.m. Sunday,
Nov. 2, at Turover Farein
Cemetery, 14 Mile and
Gratiot. Rabbi Frankel
and Cantor Wetzler of
Lansing will officiate. Re-
latives and friends are
asked to attend.

The Family of the Late


Announces the unveiling
of a monument in his
memory 2 p.m. Sunday,
Nov. 9, at Clover Hill
Memorial Park. Rabbi
Gorrelick will officiate.
Relatives and friends are
asked to attend.

The Family of the Late


Announces the unveiling
of a monument in his
memory 11 a.m. Sunday,
Nov. 2, at Clover Hill
Memorial Park. Rabbi
Woheelernter will offici-
ate. Relatives and friends

are asked to attend.

The Family of the Late


Announces the unveiling
of a monument in her
memory 1 p.m. Nov. 2, at
Clover Hill Memorial
Park. Rabbi Gruskin will
officiate. Relatives and
friends are asked to

termined guerillas will not kill
themselves rather than fight to
the end and inflict losses upon the
enemy. She pointed out that the
situation of the Masada guerillas,
although precarious, was far from
being hopeless. They had a unique
strategic advantage over the Ro-
man attackers whose assault ramp
did not reach the fortress walls
breached in one place only. It was
possible to defend Masada for a
time. Unlike the Jerusalem de-
fenders, enfeebled by famine, the
Masada fighters had food and
water in abundance.

Dr. Weiss-Rosmarin said the
Masada finds had been wrongly
identified as relics of the Masada
defenders. She singled out the
20-odd skeletons, claimed as
proof of the reliability of Jo-
sephus' account, as the most
glaring example of spurious

Josephus' story of the end of
Masada is presented in the literary
device of a double-speech put into
the mouth of Eleazar Ben-Ya'ir,
commander of the Masada gueril-
las. Josephus, however, was in
Rome when Masada fell (73 C.E.)
and students of Josephus have dis-
missed the Eleazar speeches as
Dr. Weiss-Rosmarin said that
Josephus ascribed suicide to the
Masada guerillas so as to in-
gratiate himself with his Roman
masters. He knew that, as they
would see it, when hundreds of
fully armed soldiers, entrenched
in a position of strategic superi-
ority commit suicide rather than
fight, it is cowardice. Josephus
wanted to convey that the Judeans
were heroes only when protected
by the inaccessibility of their
mountain-top fortress. But when
challenged to meet the enemy in
hand-to-hand battle, they chick-
ened out.
Still another motivation of Jo-
sephus' Masada fiction was that
he had lured 39 Judeans to com-
mit suicide, after the Jotapata de-
feat, so as to be able to go over
to the Romans. Dr. Weiss-Rosmarin
suggested that Josephus glorified
suicide, inventing it for the Masada
defenders, so as to convince him-
self that when causing his fellow-
Judeans to end their lives he be-

Dayan Says El Fatah
Leader No Great Shakes

TE AVIV (ZINNS) — Yassir M
Arafat, so-called commander of the
terrorist El Fatah, is hardly a seri-
ous political leader and there is
some question as to his military
leadership, said Moshe Dayan in
an interview.
Dayan characterizes Al Arafat
as a product of special historical
circumstances, which he exploits
to gain attention. According to
Dayan, he is a far cry from such
men as Ho Chi Minh, Tito, or even
Having no ambition to supplant
Hussein, with little interest in
either the incursion of Soviet influ-
ence in the area or the perpetua-
tion of feudal systems, Al Arafat
does not constitute a weighty poli-
tical factor, nor does he pretend to
speak for the Palestinian Arabs,
said Dayan.

Paper Denounces Head
of Jewish Defense League

stowed upon them the laurels of
Dr. Weiss Rosmarin concluded
that in the absence of proof that
the Masada guerillas committed
suicide, one cannot but infer that,
as seasoned and determined gueril-
las, they fought to the end and
died as soldiers in battle.

Friday, Ocotber 31, 1969-35

Mr. Rabinowicz. a banker, au-
000 volume library considered to thor and life - long Zionist, was born
be one of the most extensive col- in Austria and held a doctorate
lections on Zionism and Jewish from the University of Prague,
history will be moved shortly from lie had been a member of the
Scarsdale, N.Y. to the Hebrew board and library committee of
University library here. The donor the Jewish Theological Seminary
was the late Oskar K. Rabinowicz of America, the board of the Jew-
Scarsdale, whose father, Yehuda ish Publication Society of America
Israeli Ships Arriving of
Arye Rabinowicz, started the col- and a member of the council of the
American-Israel Cultural, Founda-
in Britain Searched for lection.
A room at the library that will Y ear s of Zionism," "Winston
Bomb Following Tip
house the collection was dedicated Churchill on Jewish Problems" and
LONDON (JTA) — Israeli ships here Sunday in the presence of "llerzl, Architect of the Balfour
arriving at British ports were or- Hebrew University president Av- Declaration."
dered searched by police and cus- raham Harman and the donor's
Maurice Samuel Gives
toms officials as a result of a widow.
Research Data to HUC-JIR
report to Scotland Yard and the
home office that a timebomb was
NEW YORK — Maurice Samuel,
Handicaped to Operate
secreted aboard one of them by
whose "Blood Accusation, the
an Ethiopean sailor in the employ Newsstand in Project
Strange Case of Mendel Beiliss"
of an Arab terrorist organization.
NEW YORK (JTA)—The Jewish received wide critical acclaim for
(In Haifa, Israeli police branded Occupational Council has received, its painstaking and intricate re-
the reports a "hoax" after search- a grant to plan a program to train search, has given all of his re-
ing vessels bound for Britain. The physically and mentally handi- search material, much of it unique,
authorities said there was no Ethio- caped persons to manage vending to the library of the Hebrew Union
pian aboard any Israeli ships sail- stands for newspapers and paper- College-Jewish Institute of Reli-
ing to or from Britain.)
back books and thus become self- gion.
Port of London police boarded supporting, the agency announced.
Among the data are photostats of
the Israeli freighter Kineret of the The grant was allocated by the the original stenographic report in
Zim Lines on her arrival here Periodical and Book Association of Russian of the infamous ritual
from Ashdod and every other America, the Magazine Publishers murder trial, its translation into
major port has been alerted. Association and the Council of English, secret reports of spies,
Zim's "Rachel" was searched at Periodical Distributors Associa- testimonies of participants in the
sea. The tip came from Israeli in- tions.
trial before revolutionary tribunals
telligence agents.
Officials of the JOC, the coordin- and excerpts from the newspapers
They reportedly warned that the
ating agency for 25 Jewish voca- of the period.
Ethiopian had smuggled aboard
tional service organizations, said
an explosive device powerful
that the plan calls for a three-year
enough to destroy the ship and
evaluation demonstration in 10 to
severely damage the port at which
15 cties sampling all geographical
it berth •
The proposal is scheduled to be
Rabin Rumored in Line ready by early 1970 when it will he
UN 4-8785
for Education Ministry presented for funding to private
foundations and the federal govern-
JERUSALEM (JTA) — Rumors ment. The JOC will develop the
have cropped up again in Israel service model and the organiza-
newspapers that Israel's ambassa- tional plan to be implemented by
dor to the United States, Gen. member agencies in cities selected
Yitzhak Rabin, will be named min- by the Publishers Advisory Com-
ister of education and culture in mittee.
the new cabinet. There was no con-
firmation from any official sources.
Have An Affair to Remember
Asher Ben-Natan, retiring as
ambassador to West Germany, was
said to be considered as Rabin's
successor in the U.S.
And Orchestra
Gen. Rabin, former chief of
staff of Israel's armed forces, was
KE 4-5980
not a candidate for election. But
5.* Expectation
Israeli law does not require a cab-
Shop inc. I'
inet minister to be a member of
Parliament. The incumbent min-
141 West Maple Rd.
ister of education, Zalman Aranne,
announced some time ago that he
Midwest 6-1440
would retire from public office.

Sufr_A 3.tupu

• =4/ 4 6°
t0 res_
C- 7 .004eist



German Peasant Families
Get Yad Vashem Medals

BONN (JTA)—Four West Ger-
man peasant families received
medals and citations from the
Israeli ambassador recnt fyel
Israeli ambassador recently for
having saved the lives of a Jew-
ish family hunted by Nazis during
World War II.
The citations were authorized by
the Yad Vashem, the martyrs
documentation center in Jerusalem
which has also - planted trees in
Israel in the names of the Ger-
mans. The peasants sheltered the
Jewish family between February
1943 and the end of the war in
In a related development, a
former guard in the Sachsenhausen
concentration camp, Heinz Zim-
merman, was sentenced to one
year in prison by a Cologne court
for complicity in the shooting of
Russian prisoners of war and Jews
during World War II.

NEW YORK (JTA)—Rabbi Meir
Kahane, national chairman of the
self-styled Jewish Defense League,
has been denounced by the weekly
Jewish newspaper he formerly
edited. Rabbi Sholom Klass, pub- NY Youth Demonstrate
lisher of the Jewish Press, an Or- at Soviet UN Mission
thodox-oriented tabloid published
NEW YORK (JTA)—The Soviet
in Brooklyn, Tuesday dissociated United Nations mission was taunt-
the paper from Rabbi Kahane and ed by Jewish youth groups Mon-
other leaders of the JDL.
day. The youngsters danced to
He accused Rabbi Kahane of Israeli tunes and sang Hebrew
making the JDL a "personal politi. songs outside the building in a
cal club" and waging "a cam- demonstration on behalf of Jewish
paign of vilification" against youth in Leningrad whose Simhat
Mayor John V. Lindsay.
Torah celebrations last month were
According to Rabbi Klass, Rabbi suppressed by Soviet police.
Kahane was asked to resign as
Participants were high school
editor of the Jewish Press because and college students of Hashahar
Betar, Jewish youth move-
he gave more time to
than to his duties on the paper.

Daily 10.5:30
Thom., Fri.
6! 9 p.m.





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