Sixteen years later, I can still hear the sudden gasp, followed by a loud, spontaneous and mournful wail that erupted from the thousands gathered outside 770 Eastern Parkway in Brooklyn when the simple wooden casket carrying the remains of the Lubavitcher Rebbe, Menachem Mendel Schneerson, emerged from the movement’s headquarters on June 12, 1994, corresponding to the third of Tammuz (this coming Tuesday).
Yanukovich’s victory welcomed cautiously by community.
Moscow — In a country where anxieties about anti-Semitism are never far from the surface, Viktor Yanukovich’s victory in Ukraine’s presidential election is being welcomed with caution by Ukrainian Jews.
Yanukovich, who has close ties to the Kremlin, replaces Viktor Yushchenko, his West-leaning rival who won five years ago in a second runoff election between the candidates. Widespread protests claiming fraud in favor of Yanukovich in the original runoff spurred the rematch. The pro-democracy protests became known as the Orange Revolution.
This year’s edition of the New York Jewish Film Festival has been an instructive experience. Even a program as large as this one cannot claim to be representative; there are simply too many Jewish filmmakers working in too many different political, socioeconomic and even geographical contexts to be given voice. However, a few tentative conclusions can be drawn, with the final handful of movies serving nicely to underline our findings.
Aleksander Ford was a Jewish-Polish filmmaker whose career summed up the bloody 20th century. He enjoyed one of the rare happy endings, thanks to a mixture of luck and foresight, but it is clear from his best film, “Border Street” (1949), that he knew all too well how rare his good fortune was. “Border Street,” which will have a rare U.S. showing on Nov. 18, was the first fiction feature to attempt to portray the Warsaw Ghetto uprising, and Ford undoubtedly knew many of the men and women who had perished in the flames that engulfed the ghetto.
Editor’s note: This is the second of a two-part series connected to the 90th anniversary of UJA-Federation of New York. The first part, concerning the federation’s history, appeared last week.
The help that Irina Dubrovskaya receives from the Hebrew Free Loan Society, one of the 24 charter agencies that launched what is now UJA-Federation, is similar to much of the aid the federation funded through the society in its early years.
Olga Glebova identifies herself as part of a distinguished and highly regarded class in Russia, hailing, she says, from “a very old, noble Russian family.” Like much of the country, she’s also Russian Orthodox, a faith whose leaders have often been at odds with Russian Jewry.
But Glebova, an English teacher in Moscow, tries to discuss the Holocaust as much as possible at the high school in which she works.
Assemblywoman Adele Cohen’s path to the Democratic nomination for a fourth term as representative of a south Brooklyn district that includes the heart of the Russian-Jewish community has become a little more difficult.
The candidacy of Inna Kaminsky, a 27-year-old healthcare worker and political unknown originally from Ukraine, was affirmed Monday when the state Supreme Court upheld a Board of Elections ruling on Kaminsky’s petitions challenging Cohen in the Sept. 14 primary in the 46th District.
As the Orange Revolution plays out in the streets of Kiev, half a world away in Brooklyn, Jewish emigres from Ukraine are reflecting the same split regarding that country’s ongoing political crisis as their countrymen back home.
Those from Kiev and the western part of the country generally favor the pro-Western Viktor Yuschenko for president, while those from the east and south back the pro-Russian Prime Minister Viktor Yanukovych.