Yom Kippur 2010. The part of the synagogue where I sit is full of women talking with one another, and small kids giggling and playing around. It is extremely hot, and the extra layers of manteau (long outerwear) and the scarf covering my hair add to the intolerable heat.
Ari Babaknia doesn’t expect that Iran’s president will ever read his four-volume series of Holocaust books written in the Farsi language. But the author says he is confident that Mahmoud Ahmadinejad knows the books exists.
Fast-paced techno dance music blasts through Chikas, a retail clothing store off Santee Street in the heart of downtown Los Angeles’ Fashion District, which many call the Garment District. Robert Mahgerefteh, the store’s owner, helps the dozen or so young women looking for great deals on the latest fashions.
The Holocaust documentary "Shoah" is being broadcast in Iran. The 1985 documentary by French director Claude Lanzmann was scheduled to be presented this week on a satellite channel and is dubbed in Farsi. Satellites are banned in Iran, but many Iranians have them and therefore could watch the film, which includes survivor testimony.
Yad Vashem has launched a YouTube channel in Farsi and an expanded version of its Farsi website. The Farsi YouTube channel launched Sunday contains survivor testimonies, archival footage and mini-lectures by Holocaust historians on topics such as contemporary anti-Semitism, and what makes the Holocaust a unique historical event. The comprehensive new website includes a chronological and thematic narrative about the Holocaust with related video, photos, documents and artifacts; frequently asked questions about the Holocaust; a lexicon of terms; online exhibitions including a multimedia presentation of the Auschwitz Album in Farsi; and stories of Righteous Among the Nations.
One winner has already been declared in the Iranian elections: The Internet, used by more than 23 million Iranians, or 34 percent of the population. But that figure alone cannot be used to determine which of the four candidates will win. At the very most, one can assume most Web users will vote for reformist candidates Mir-Hossein Mousavi or Mehdi Karroubi, rather than Mahmoud Ahmadinejad or Mohsen Rezeai.
It was perhaps the most emotionally potent moment of the evening, as the elderly Rabbi Yedidiah Shofet, addressing his audience in Farsi, broke down and cried, his voice trembling, his frail body shaking.Representing the Nessah Cultural Organization, Shofet was part of a lineup of speakers appearing earlier this week at West Hollywood's Hollywood Temple Beth El, where - reacting to the July 1 verdict that sentenced 10 of the Shiraz 13 - local Jews met to demonstrate support for the prisoners and to condemn the actions of the Iranian government.