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January 03, 1986 - Image 5

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
The Detroit Jewish News, 1986-01-03

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

Friday, January 3, 1986 5

THE DETROIT JEWISH NEWS

1

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Call The Jewish News

354-6060

CUSTOM
FRAMING

Since 1950

Over 9,000

flourished despite political , and
economic conditions which were
almost unbearable. From the
small "shtetl" to the large cities,
there flowed a spirit filled with
hope and belif. Even the seeds of
the Zionist movement, planted_
during a period of severe politi-
cal oppression, took root and
swept through Europe with a
great momentum.
From this picture of the rich
Jewish heritage which we inher-
ited, I returned again to the
"empty shelves." Where are our
writers? Where are our poets?
From where will flow our
Jewish cultural treasury? What
is the contribution to Judaism of
Jewry in America, a country
where there is free speech, free-
dom of religion, economic oppor-
tunity and absence. of oppres-
sion?! Despite all of these many
advantages, the "shelves remain
empty."
Could it be, that the identity
of American Jewry is dependent
on either the memory of the
Holocaust or the State of Israel?
Perhaps yes! Perhaps we find in
America "hollow" Jews, Jews
'that find need to sustain their
Jewish identity from without.
And if so, what is to be found
within? This is an important
and, perhaps, painful question,
but it brings to the essence
and to the heart of the problem.
Jews of America must awaken

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themselves to confront this prob-
lem. The "empty shelves" are
calling out: "Wake up! take your
destiny into your own hands.
Think of your purpose and your
direction. Stop sailing, aim-
lessly, on the stormy sea of his-
tory!"

Perhaps part of the deathly of
American Jewry is to serve as a
historic link with the past; to be
witness to the terriblA tragedy
and slaughter which befell our
relatives and loved ones at the
hands of the Nazis. Perhaps this
aspect of the destiny of Ameri-
can Jewry is to insure that the
memory of the six million Jews
who died in the ovens of Europe
will forever be indelibly in-
scribed in the annals'of history.
But part of the question still
remains unanswered. This ques-
tion, the contribution of Ameri-
can Jewry to Judaism, must be
one that burns in the heart 2of
every Jew in America. The "dan-
gers to Judaism will not come
from the outside. Unfortunately,
there will always be anti-
Semitism, have no doubts about
this. But anti-Semitism will not
the most ominous threat to the
existence of Judaism. Of far
more wimportance is the threat
that comes from within, and if
American Jewry doesn't awaken
to this reality, "the shelves will
remain einpty."

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LETTERS

The Sentence
Of Soviet Jewry

21119

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their • plight is great. We feel
Being at the Federal Correc-
that it is a moral imperative
tional Institution in Petersburg,
Virginia, for having protested , that the call. for freedom for
Soviet Jews and others who suf-
within 400 feet of the. Soviet
fer from human rights violations
Embassy against the persecw
be public and clear.
tion of Soviet Jews, brings new
We draw inspiration from our
experiences each day which sen-
religious
tradition concerning
me
and
my
four
colleagues
sitize
responsibility for the oppressed.
as to what it means not to be
Our theme song among the, five
free. :
rabbis here in jail has been,
SeVeral times each day the of-
' ficials count us. Functioning as "The entire world is a narrow
orderlies, we clean, sweep, dust bridge, and the main thing is
not to be afraid." We sought
and mop. But perhaps it is our-
through thee words to Assuage
selves that we are really cleans-
ing for in some ways I have our fears in • coming here. These
words should shape the direction
never felt as free. There is cer-
Of activity for Soviet Jewry in
tainly a lot of time to think and
the critical months ahead.
reflect.
Rabbi David Ozer
Sentences for Soviet Jews Chairman, Washington Board of Rabbis
whose crime is trying to func-
Soviet Jewry Action Committee
tion as Jews and study Torah,
are measured in years and de-
cades, not days. The various
Soviet Jewry organizations and
Likes Newspaper
activities in our country have
Successes
-
achieved dramatic
I just wanted to let you know
over the years with over 60,000 that 4 love the new format of
being released from the Soviet The Jewish News. In particular,
union in 1979. However, only I like the informative articles on
896 left Russia in 1984. Hebrew various subjects, humorous or
teachers have been singled out otherwise. Keep it up!
for persecution and imprison-
Anne Wedes
ment. Frustration concerning

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