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August 29, 1975 - Image 13

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
The Detroit Jewish News, 1975-08-29

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

In a special article in last provided we don't make
Saturdays New York trouble, we don't get trou-
Times, Malcolm W. Browne ble."
describes the vanishing- Jew-
The Jews seem to cause
ish community of Czecho- the Communist authorities
slovakia:
neither difficulty nor em-
The Jews of Prague he- barrassment. There appar-
lieve that Judaism, which ently are no quasi-political
for seven centuries was a groups, no appeals to the
powerful factor in the intel- West, no underground jour-
lectual, artistic and archi- nals.
tectural flowing of Prague,
The community is
will he dead in Czechoslova- closely watched, and its
kia within 20 years. But it members know it. A prom-
will leave an indelible leg- inent member is consid-
. acy.
ered an informer for the
Judaism suffered its Interior Ministry.
heaviest blow here during
Jews have lost good jobs
World War II with the ex-
because of friendly contacts
termination of at least
with Americans.
77,000 Jews by the Nazis. Of
The 1,200 practicing Jews
360,000 Jews in the country
in Prague rarely meet in
before the war, 5.000 prac-
large numbers except in-
ticing Jews remain.
synagogue. Their main cen-
Little is left of Judaism ter is the Staronova (Old-
in Prague: two function- New) Synagogue, built in
ing synagogues, a kosher 1270, the oldest contin-
restaurant catering uously functioning syn-
mainly to aging pension- agogue in Europe and one of
ers, social get-togethers Prague's major early Gothic
during the High Holy architectural achievements.
Days.
Next to it is the commu-
The last rabbi, Dr. Rich- nity center and the kosher
ard Feyder. died five years restaurant, where for mod-
ago at the age of 90. Eastern est prices visitors are served
Europe's only rabbinical chicken soup and other
seminary is in Budapest, dishes by volunteers who
and Hungarian-speaking take a benevolent interest in
rabbis have little inclination all the patrons, urging the
ailing ones to eat more.
to move to Czechoslovakia.
The restaurant operates
Two cantors do what they
can to keep organized reli- at a loss, making up for
some of it by occasionally
gious life alive.
The only kosher butcher doing kosher catering to
has long since emigrated, international airlines.
Swarms of foreign tour-
and kosher meat for the res-
taurant• such as it is, must ists wander through the for-
he brought 30() miles from me• ghetto to see the grace-
Kosice, near the Soviet hor- ful old buildings and the
vast Jewish cemetery used
der.
Despite the adversities, between 14:19 and 1787.
Many of Prague's greatest
there is no discernible
pressure from the few re- Jewish landmarks—some of
maining Jews to emigrate. the finest 18th Century and
19th Century houses, in-
"Those who wanted most cluding the palace that is
to leave did so after the war now the American Em-
or (luring the upheaval in bassy, were built or owned
1968," a pensioner said.
by Jews — were spared by
The rest of us are old. the Nazi occupation, which
The Nazis left no middle decided to preserve them as
generation. To leave would relics of a civilization they
mean giving up our pensions intended to make extinct.
to face very uncertain lives
The tourists wander
abroad, cut off from our be- through the shady grave-
loved Czechoslovakia. Here, yard to look for the stones

of such notables as the
16th Century astonomer
David Ganz, the modern
writer Franz Kafka and
David Oppenheim, an
18th Century ancestor of
the late American nuclear
physicist Dr. J. Robert
Oppenheimer.

Jews delight in showing
foreigners places con-
nected with the legend of
the Golem, a clay monster
supposedly hi-ought to life
by the 16t11 Century Prague
rahhi Judah Low Ben Beza-
lel to help his people combat

the persecution of Emperor
Rudolf II.
As recently as 193$ the
Golem was thought by the
superstitious to he lying
dormant in the attic of the
Old-New Synagogue, ready
to save the Jews from the
imminent horror of Nazi
occupation.
Visitors still drop notes
containing personal wishes
into the red marble mauso-
leum of Rabbi Low, hoping
the mysterious scholar's
spirit will make them come
true.

Meanwhile, Elizabeth
Taylor and Richard Bur-
ton are patching up their
tattered marriage in Is-.
rael.
The couple, who were di-
vorced 14 months ago after
10 years of marriage, are
staying at the King David
Hotel in Jerusalem, where
Secretary of State Henry A.
Kissinger is making his Is-
raeli headquarters during
his latest shuttle peace mis-
sion.
Their visit to Israel is con-
nected with the movie
"Abakarov," which will be
filmed in Israel by German
producer-director \Volk
Vol] mar.
Miss Taylor, 43, converted
to Judaism in 1959, between
her third and fourth hus-
bands, producer Mike Todd
and singer Eddie Fisher,
both Jews.

He knows ,which side of
his bread is buttered.

ALL GENERAL MOTORS

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THE JEWISH NEWS

17515 W. NINE MILE ROAD

Suite 865
Southfield, Michigan 48075

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THE JEWISH NEWS

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Suite 865
Southfield, Mich. 48075

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Love Conquers All in Israel

TEL AVIV (JTA) — Love
conquers all, even a military
tribunal. Jeanette Faraj, the
19-year-old Israeli woman
soldier who was arrested by
military authorities after
she accompanied her lover,
an Austrian officer, to Ku-
neitra in Syrian territory,
has been given a light sent-
ence by a military court in
Haifa.
She was fined $24 and
given a three-month sus-
pended sentence after the
prosecution changed the
charge against her from ille-
gally entering an enemy
country to a lesser charge,
leaving the country without
the Ministry of Interior's
permission,
Miss foaraj is pregnant,
and her lover, Ernest Stein-
hauer, 25, who was dishon-
orahly discharged from the
Austrian army, is married.
However, Steinhauer, now a
bartender in Israel, said he
would divorce his Austrian,
wife . and Faraj ,

Friday, August 29, 1975 13

Zip Code

H1110WA1d — 21315). 21 HD — 3 oaoa

Jew of Czechoslovakia - Vanishing Community

N COL N — MER CUR Y —

THE DETROIT JEWISH NEWS

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