Three members of an Islamic terrorist cell who were on the verge of attacking the Israeli consulate, an El Al ticket counter and two synagogues, face up to 20 to 25 years in prison after pleading guilty in federal court to conspiring to levy war against the United States.
Thomas "Toivi" Blatt overpowered concentration camp guards during a mass escape by several hundred prisoners. Nechama Tec evaded Nazi detection by leading a double life, passing for three years as the daughter of Catholic Poles.
Assuming a Christian identity saved Tec, but the experience left her with the bitter feeling that she had betrayed herself and her fellow Jews. Now a University of Connecticut sociology professor, Tec has written several books that explore the mix of motivations in rescuers and resisters of the Holocaust.
Thomas Toivi Blatt, now 84, will recount his teenage experience witnessing and fleeing the Polish death camp Sobibor. Blatt, who has also written about his account, is hoping to establish an organization to maintain the site, which is not marked, said Dr. Marilyn Harran, director of Chapman University's Rodgers Center for Holocaust Education.
The Charles and Nora Hester board room at Chapman University is a typical corporate meeting area; large and devoid of anything sacred, it is located on the second floor of the school's main building. Outside the room is a display that highlights the life of Christian philanthropist Albert Schweitzer.
Nothing indicates that this environment is conducive to a strong campus Jewish life, let alone its existence. Yet on a Friday night, while most of their peers were at frat parties or dates, members of Chapman's Jewish community were celebrating a Shabbat dinner, singing and praying in Hebrew (with a liberal sprinkling of English) in this very room.