During the week covered by this review, we received 6 articles on the following subjects:
Christians and the Holocaust
Christians and the Holocaust
Yom L’Yom, March 3, 2022
This was one in a series of articles about Irena Sendler, a Polish Catholic who, during World War II, helped to rescue thousands of Jewish children, as well as adults, from the Nazis. When the Nazis invaded Poland, Sendler, who worked as a social worker, had access to the Warsaw Ghetto to which hundreds of thousands of Jews were confined. As a member of the Żegota Committee (the Council to Aid Jews), she helped smuggle thousands of them out of the Ghetto and provide them with documents and shelter. For her courageous actions, Yad Vashem honored her as “Righteous Among the Nations”. Sendler died in Warsaw in 2008. She was proudly nicknamed “the mother of Warsaw Ghetto’s children”, stated the article, and will always be remembered as a great warrior.
Hamodia, March 8, 2022
The Jerusalem District Court has canceled the Russian government’s ownership rights of “Alexander’s Courtyard” – an extremely sensitive piece of property in Jerusalem’s Old City, also known as the Church of Alexander Nevsky Courtyard. During Ottoman times, the property was registered in the name of the Russian imperial government. In 2017, the Russian government filed a request for ownership rights with Israel’s land registry. In October 2020, then Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu paved the way for the Russian government on the matter, as a gesture to Putin. Netanyahu decided that the dispute between different Christian sects over ownership fell into the category of “holy sites” and could not be resolved in a court of law. Israel’s inspector in charge of land registry accepted the request of the Russian government, and registered them as the owner of Alexander’s Courtyard. The court’s ruling followed an appeal by the Orthodox Palestine Society of the Holy Land, who owned the church prior to it being handed over to the Russian government. The Judge referred to the huge diplomatic sensitivity concerning land registration, and ruled that, since Netanyahu determined that the property is a holy site, the only one who can determine who owns the holy site is the Israeli government, which will have to decide on the matter taking into account various religious, political and diplomatic considerations. The article also mentioned the sensitivity of this issue in light of the current war in the Ukraine.
Israel Hayom, March 11, 2022
Former US Vice President Mike Pence, who is described in the article as “a classic, level-headed, and restrained public personality, with an orderly ideology and fervent religious faith”, stands with Israel, saying that if the nuclear agreement is renewed, Jerusalem “should always feel the freedom to do what is necessary to protect their people and to protect their territorial integrity.” In an exclusive interview, he said, “Israel in so many ways is that miracle, that garden in the desert, that’s emerged, that I believe is the consequence of the industry, the ingenuity of the people of Israel. But also, I believe with all my heart it’s evidence of the grace of God who millennia ago promised that he would bring his people back to this land and he would prosper them there… So for me, for my family, and I can say, on behalf of the overwhelming majority of the American people, we look at the success of Israel, we cherish our relationship, we stand with it in security. America and Israel will always walk together in peace and in that strong and unbreakable bond throughout all of coming history.” Pence is currently preparing for an independent run for the presidency in 2024.
Haaretz, March 13, 2022
This article, written by a Historian of the Holocaust period at the Hebrew University, was about “Poland’s finest hour”. “I have never seen Poland as it is today,” he wrote. “At the time of writing these lines, Poland has taken in approximately one million war refugees from the Ukraine.” Poland is suffering from a great financial crisis due to the pandemic, he explained, and yet, the Polish people have opened up their borders and their homes, churches and hearts to the influx of refugees fleeing the war. “In view of all this”, he mused, “the shocking news of Israel’s attitude toward Ukrainian refugees arrives in Poland. Ayelet Shaked, who does not miss an opportunity to adopt every racist vulgarity in her path, declares that it is impossible to continue flooding Israel with Gentiles, and demands a financial guarantee from them for their quick departure. Prime Minister Naftali Bennett… explains that preparations must be made for the absorption of tens of thousands of Jews. And no one in this government is asking himself why. Are Ukrainian Jews fleeing because of anti-Semitism? … After all, from the same bombed-out building in Kiev, fled a Jewish family and a Christian family, sometimes in the same vehicle. Why can these get asylum in the country and the others cannot? The Polish people, who are ‘terrible, well-known anti-Semites’, will actually welcome the two families, the Jewish and the Christian, with open arms.”
Maariv, March 13, 2022
Private and public initiatives to aid the Ukrainian refugees fleeing to Israel are increasing, and the IDF has recruited the Alon Headquarters, which routinely handles corona matters, for the task. The chairman of the Constitution, Law and Justice Committee, Rabbi Kariv from the Labor party, called on Bennett and Shaked to significantly increase the number of refugees arriving and also upgrade their care. Activists from the Forum for the Absorption of Ukrainian Refugees demonstrated at Ben Gurion Airport against what they called “Israel’s opaque policy”.
Hed Hair, March 7, 2022
This article reported that while Ukrainians are seeking shelter and protection from the heavy shelling, thousands of them come to the synagogues and seek sanctuary. The Chief Rabbi of Zaporozhye, Rabbi Nachum Erentroi said that every person who sought shelter was welcome. “In the basement of the synagogue 350-400 people huddle together. Most of them are Jews and some are non-Jews who begged us to open the synagogue… The Ukrainians believe that the Russians will not harm the synagogues.” Other synagogues around the Ukraine are also providing shelter for the refugees. It was also reported that the Ukrainian President, Volodymyr Zelensky, appealed to the Chief Rabbi of the Ukraine, Rabbi Yaakov Bleich, requesting that all Jews in his land pray for the well-being of the Ukrainian people and for the end of the war.