CLOSE-UP — NEW BAR MITZVAH
KAREN A. KATZ
Adult parties for b'nai mitzvah have
given way to something for the kids.
What better time to teach our children
the uses and misuses of money?
Linking American teens with Soviet
refuseniks has become a popular
addition to the ceremony.
Page 1 art by John Kachik
Jewish partisans in Vilna, 1944: 'Pointedly dangerous'
Jewish History Refutes
Gun Control Activists
his just shows what you can expect
from Jews if they lay hands on
weapons," Joseph Goebbels, diary,
May 1, 1943.
Directing his vexation at the revolt by
the inmates of the Warsaw ghetto, Nazi pro-
pagenda chief Goebbels was more prescient
about Jewish proficiency with guns than he
and his cronies were in their predictions of
longevity for Adolph Hitler's Third Reich.
This summer will mark the 21st an-
niversary of Israel's victory in the Six-Day
War. Abandoned by most of the world and
faced with seemingly certain death from
the tightening noose of its neighbors,
Israel's astounding triumph was one of the
most brilliant military campaigns in
history. Israel has avoided extinction for
the past 40 years because its people have
attained sufficient skill in the use of
firearms and other weapons to overcome
the superiority in population size, land
area and oil wealth of the enemies surroun-
Goebbels was spared the pain of having
to see the supreme accomplishment of Jews
who "lay hands on weapons;' but the call
for disarming Jews has not vanished with
the Nazi movement. The baton of leader-
ship has passed to — the American Jewish
For years, much of the established '
Jewish leadership in the U.S. has been
reflexively banging the drum for gun con-
Eliott Rothenberg is an attorney in Minneapolis and
the president of the North Star Legal Foundation, a
public interest litigating organization dedicated to
protecting individual liberties and promoting
economic progress. This article reprinted with
permission from "The American Rifleman."
trol. The June 1987 American Rifleman
listed seven major Jewish rabbinical and
lay organizations as being among the most
active participants in coalitions pushing for
gun control. These include the United
Synagogue of America, the Union of
AmeriCan Hebrew Congregations, the
American Jewish Committee and the
Council of Jewish Women. No other
religious body has as many groups listed
or has made such a sweeping commitment
to the cause.
This insistence upon denying private
citizens the right to possess firearms ig-
nores the lessons of history. The travails ex-
perienced by 20th century Jewry, both in
Europe and Israel, do not justify the
American Jewish leadership's fervor for
gun control and, in fact, they argue for the
The Six-Day War was not the Israelis'
first victory over forces threatening their
annihilation. Indeed, had they shared their
American brethren's enthusiasm for
government control of access to guns, no
Israel would have survived to 1967.
In the last years of their occupation, the
British authorities in what was then call-
ed Palestine prohibited the Jewish popula-
tion from acquiring weapons and organiz-
ing a militia. (At the same time, they were
providing arms to neighboring Arab
states). Only the Jewish residents' refusal
to obey the British attempt to impose gun
control prevented a second Holocaust in the
same decade. When the British withdrew
from Palestine in 1948, ilegal armaments
and Jewish expertise in their use averted
a promised, and universally expected,
slaughter at the hands of massive Arab in-
vading armies and brought about the
establishment of the state of Israel.
Tragically, the lesson that oppressed
Continued on Page 10
LIFE IN ISRAEL
Normal life goes on — almost —
for Israel's Jews and Israel's Arabs.
There are two sides of the table
for attorney-agent Rick Brode.
On consecutive Sundays,
the Neighborhood Project
had the town jumping.
Romantic cruises are still
the vacation preferred by singles._
April 29, 1988