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October 26, 1973 - Image 4

Resource type:
The Detroit Jewish News, 1973-10-26

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Incorporating The Detroit Jewish Chronicle commencing with issue of July 20, 1951

Member American Association of English-Jewish Newspapers, Michigan Press Association, National Editorial Associa-
tion. Published every Friday by The Jewish News Publishing Co., 17515 W. Nine Mile, Suite 865, Southfield, Mich. 48075.
Second-Class Postage Paid at Southfield, Michigan and Additional Mailing Offices. Subscription $10 a year.


Editor and Publisher



Business Manager

City Editor


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Sabbath Scriptural Selections

This Sabbath, the first day of Heshvan, 5734, the following scriptural selections
will be read in our synagogues:
Pentateuchal portions, Gen. 6:9-11:32, Num. 28:9-15. Prophetical portion, Isaiah

Candle lighting, Friday, Oct. 26, 6:16 p.m.

VOL. LXIV. No. 7

Page Four

October 26, 1973

A Time for Reckoning and Unquenchable Justice

The fourth Arab-Israel war has ended.
As on all previous tragic occasions, just as Israel was about to gain victory, the United
Nations stepped in to call a halt to the military operations.
It is fortunate that the diplomatic genius of Secretary of State Henry A. Kissinger
came into play at the right time to prevent further losses of lives.
Will the warmongering end? Peace still is too far off to speculate on that score.
Israel's embittered enemies have not taken into account a basic fact—that it was not
a question of might against might. At the root of the entire issue was Israel's need and
will to live. It was Israel's determination to survive in defiance of an attempt to destroy a
tiny state amidst expanding, oil-rich nations in their begrudging the right to sovereignty to
their small cousin neighbor.
The latest and most tragic war embraced not only the 2,500,000 Jews in Eretz
Israel and their half million Christian and Muslim fellow citizens; not the million ad-
ditional Arabs who live in amity in the territories that were occupied by Israel in the Six-
Day War, but all of the other 10,000,000 Jews throughout the world who have not aban-
doned their kinship with Israelis.
Yom Kippur 5734 marked a renewal of the age-old defense of faith. Israel's enemies
declared war upon us on that sacred day. It was an unnecessary challenge, but it emerged,
and it was met. It inaugurated tragedy. Thousands are agonized by the wounds of war.
Arab saber-rattling will never be forgiven: both for forcing Israel into defensive positions,
and into wars—all ending in tragedies that were avoidable.
No there will be new accounting of what had happened. The speculations, the "I-
told-you-so" boastings, the score-keeping, will fill new ledgers. There also be a reckoning.
The losses will be made known, the oil profits will be listed, the political geniuses will the-
orize, news commentators will have a heyday. In the process, the Jewish people will be self-
humbled by hope: that there never again be such losses, that our position not be distorted,
that a recognition of a will to live peacefully with neighbors not be stymied. In the proc-
ess, the Psalmist will again be affirmed: "Lo omut ki ekhye:—"I shall not die but live . . ."
Indeed, in the process there will be a reckoning. Once again, we are grateful for the
encouragement and support that came from labor's ranks. It is a consistency that we cher-
ish, one that merits our deepest appreciation. There have been antagonists from the ranks
of the blacks, yet the overwhelming majority of the black community has sided with the
overwhelming majority of the U. S. Congress in Israel's defense.
With this expression is linked the historic Jewish attitude regarding the freedoms
for all peoples of all faiths and all races: we are against racism, we shall continue to be
counted in the ranks of justice-seeking peoples for our black fellow-citizens and we shall
never abandon justice amidst chaotic confrontations.
Our legislators have proven ,their sense of honor. Israel was not abandoned by the
U. S. Senate and House of Representatives. There are antagonists there. Fulbright and
Mansfield are not cooperative, Aiken and Hatfield may have been motivated by animus. It is
difficult to understand the wishy-washiness of a Griffin. So be it. The majority in Congress
has not been swayed by indifference to justice for embattled Israelis.
President Nixon's firm stand on U. S. policy in the Middle East, the efforts of Dr.
Henry Kissinger, the roles of many in our government, will remain on the record as acts
of determination to provide means for defense of a tiny nation against the 18 enemy states
in whose behalf a lynch atmosphere has ruled in the United Nations Security Council be-
cause of the support the destroyers of peace have received from neary all world powers.
Because of the threats from the oil-producing countries, it becomes necessary to se-
cure proper guidance far the American people to economize on use of oil, to seek solution
to the threatened energy crisis with means that are readily available to us. Car pools, re-
duction of use of gasoline to the basics and to the minimum, a bit less power when it can
be reduced, using only as much heat as is necessary—these are means to overcome the in-
human threats from Arab states. They are weapons in a war that is threatened into an in-
ternational status.
And there is the reckoning in faith. There is the religious factor. As in 1967, after
the Six-Day War, many churchmen have been unfriendly to Israel, antagonistic to Jewry,
pro-Arab, anti-liberal. This is especially true of the Protestant community. More friendship
has come from the Catholic ranks. The attitude of the Protestants was tantamount, as one
liberal Christian described it, to a religious genocide. The minority in their ranks, liberal
Protestantism which struggled in a friendly spirit in the ranks of justice-loving Jews and
Israelites, must gain recognition, support, encouragement—to attain leadership in their own
There is—let it be said with gratitude for a great American heritage!—a free press.
The newspapers of this country have been fair, objective, they published the news properly
and efficiently, and most editorial comments—like those of radio and TV commentators—are
fair. There are exceptions. The most shocking example of bias was in a religious periodical,
in the editorial sancta of the Christian Science Monitor.
Out of it all must emerge a sense of honor, objective and rational approaches, a
recognition that a nation can not be destroyed because of the whims and prejudices of hate-
mongers. There was a strong, intellectual dove element in Israel. It became as much in dan-
ger as a target for destruction as the extremist hawk. There are no doves left in Israel be-
cause a people that has been made an object for destruction must protect itself. The entire
world must recognize that right. The Arabs must themselves take the lead to grant the right
to live to a very small element in their midst.
This must be the meaning of the Yom Kippur War: abandonment of selfishness by
warmongers, their admission that three million among more than a hundred million have as
much right to exist as the majority; a determination by the world's powers to protect that
right; a willingness within the ranks of the international organization—the UN!—to adopt an
attitude of decency even if the great powers themselves must be shamed into it.
The time has come for reckoning that will end injustice. Within that time span is Is-
rael's ..hciur of self-determination. Neither the bigots who claim world might, nor those fo-
menting a religious genocide, and no one who advocates genocide for Jewry—not even Jew-
ry's deluded cousins!— can deny that. Because Am Yisrael hai—the people Israel lives!

Dr. Prinz Depicts Marranism's
Dramas in 'The Secret Jews'

Survivalism in Jewish history has been manifested a thousand
times, and among the most dramatic evidences of tenacious adherence
to faith is the story of the Marranos.
They were—and in many areas still are—"The Secret Jews."
That's the title of the story of the Marranos fascinatingly described
by Dr. Joachim Prinz. In his Random House-published book, Dr.
Prinz, rabbi, lecturer, author, American Jewish ,
Congress leader, has compiled episodes about
Jews in Latin American countries who, without
specific knowledge abOut their ancestors, never-

theless adhere to certain ceremonies to retain
the customs that were kept secretly—Sabbath
Eve candelighting, fasting on Yom Kippur and
other observances.
Perhaps the Marrano status is linked with
the question "What Is a Jew?" and how did the
Jews survive. Dr. Prinz does touch upon the over-
all drama of Jewish persistence, the will to live,
the adherence to faith.
Dr. Prinz
He defines the term: "The word marrano un-
doubtedly was coined by the people (among whom they lived) and
is a term of contempt and derision. Some scholars believe that it
comes from the Spanish word marrar, meaning to deviate from truth
or justice, a description of Jews who marrar, or mar, the true faith
with insincere conversion. There are others who think it derived from
a Spanish word meaning something like prostitute. But most people
agree that Marrano simply means 'swine' and expresses in simplest
terms the hatred of the populace for the cristianos nuevos, the new,
but not real—Christians. The modern Spanish dictionary lists marrano
as 'pig, hog, dirty man, cursed, excommunicated, and Jew.' "

The very defiance of every approbrium proves the validity of
affirmation of faith by Jews who held fast to their religious dedica-
tion, those who kept the symbolisms pissed on to them in secusy,
retaining the observances as matters of honor for a past that was
defiled by the Inquisition.

The many incidents recorded in Dr. Prinz's book are fascinating
addenda to the story of survivors' from the Inquisition and those who
deviated from the organized church not to abuse human dignities
among the New Christians. There were escapes for some in the midst
of persecution. For example, to quote one of the instances referred to
by Rabbi Prinz:
"The monasteries were considered particularly safe refuges for
conversos, (those forced to become converts), and the Society of Jesus,
which was founded in the 16th Century by St. Ignatius of Loyola, in-
cluded many monks of Jewish descent. Ignatius himself had been sus-
pected of observing Jewish customs in secret. The accusation was
a nonsensical fabrication, but it is said that Ignatius was pros 3
have been accused of being a close relative of Jesus and the '. ___y
Mother Mary. He was so utterly free of anti-Jewish feeling that he
appointed Diego Lainex, a man known to have been born a Jew, to
succeed him."
The Inquisition was at work, those branded as Judaizers were
persecuted and tormented, there was a mass emigration—only the
wealthy able to escape—and those who fled included many who re-
turned to the faith they were forced to abandon as conversos. Their
story forms a great portion of the drama portrayed in Dr. Prinz's
"The Secret Jews."
Among the • returnees who then played great roles in Jewish his-
tory were Dona Gracio, the Mendes family, the eminent Joseph Nasi
and others—all part of an impressive historic narrative that is so
filled with historic incidents that it reads like fiction. It is history in
all its factualness.
Some of the heroes who returned to the faith and created paths

for others to follow them are examples of resistance at its best.
Among the most fascinating is the story of Barros Basta, the Portu-
guese Marrano, and many more are depicted here in all their stoic
heroism to return to Judaism.

In this epic story of resistance against persecutions and retention
of faith, Dr. Prinz describes Marranism as "the story of Jewish tenacity,
the Jew's incredible talent for survival." The Marrano story emerges,
in Dr. Prinz's narrative, as an epic of loyalty to faith and people.

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