Doli Offner (now Doli Redner) and her older sister, Lea, stood single file along with a group of young women at Auschwitz as Dr. Josef Mengele walked past, dispatching each with a flick of his thumb to one side or another. Lea was sent to the labor camp line and Doli to the gas chamber. Doli couldn’t move. She daydreamed about being reunited with her mother and let herself be pushed ahead by the other girls, who were crying and shoving as whips cracked down on them. Then, suddenly, she was pulled from her line and moved to Lea’s. Doli didn’t know who saved her life, but at that moment she thought, “If somebody did that for me, I’m not going to give up.”
Tadeusz Mazowiecki, Poland’s first post-Communist prime minister, was being remembered by the Jewish world for fighting anti-Semitism and as a friend of Israel.
Sophie Zeidman Hamburger, 94, of Los Angeles passed away at home Oct. 10th with her family by her side. A Holocaust survivor, Sophie inspired many people with both her courage and her warmth.
I want to thank and congratulate you for again getting it right (“It’s Warsaw, Jake,” Oct. 18). It’s amazing what happens when power and authority are motivators. Since the Twarda has dealt with only the Orthodox community under Rabbi Michael Schudrich for years, it’s an uphill dynamic to move the pendulum at all or at least incrementally.
You would think that when the Polish edition of Forbes, the internationally respected financial magazine, publishes a front-page exposé on the disappearance of tens of millions of dollars of Holocaust restitution funds, Jews everywhere would be outraged and demand an immediate, independent investigation.
“Don’t speak, don’t cry. The Germans will hear us, and they will kill us.” Four-year-old Hadasa Cytrynowicz — then Dasha Eisenberg — silently clung to her mother, wrapped in the goose down comforter they had brought with them from Konskie, Poland, to a hut near the Bug River, northeast of Warsaw. Hadasa was frightened.
A Torah scroll that has been hidden in a Tuchow monastery since 1942 was returned to the synagogue in Dabrowa Tarnowska in southern Poland.
Left destitute overnight when the Nazis confiscated his life savings in 1941, Ben Lesser’s father, Lazar, used a 100-pound bag of flour and some salt — a housewarming gift from a friend — to bake pretzels for the local bars in Niepolomice in southern Poland.
Dorothy Greenstein — then Devorah Kirszenbaum — was upstairs in her family’s apartment in Otwock, Poland, preparing for her first day of third grade and coaxing her 2-year-old nephew to eat when suddenly the whole house shook. Bombs were falling.
A few weeks before Poland’s parliament voted last month on whether to overturn a ban on ritual slaughter, Rabbi Menachem Margolin was scheduled to meet the Polish president in an effort to find a solution to the problem.
German industrialist Berthold Beitz, who rescued Jewish workers in occupied Poland by employing them during World War II, has died.
Remember Had Gadya? What satisfaction when, onto the scene of carnage, walks the Holy One of Blessing, and destroys the angel of death that slew the butcher that killed the ox that drank the water that quenched the fire that burned the stick that beat the dog that bit the cat that ate the kid.
As JTA’s Cnaan Liphshiz reported last week, the Polish legislature’s decision not to overturn a ban on kosher slaughter has stirred up a stew of anti-Semitic commentary and led to a sense of unease among some Polish Jews.
A Polish government minister asked Jewish and Muslim representatives to petition the country’s Constitutional Court to sort out conflicting laws that have led to a ban on ritual slaughter.
In their Krakow home, Anna Makowka Kwapisiewicz and her husband, Piotr, skim through an online article about Poland’s recent ban on kosher slaughter.
In the early morning of Oct. 12, 1941, German authorities ordered the Jews of Stanislawow, Poland, to report to the town square. Six-year-old Robert (Bob) Geminder huddled there with his mother, grandmother and brother, George. The group of approximately 20,000 Jews was then marched to the nearby cemetery. Bob and his family, among the early arrivals, were shoved toward the cemetery’s back wall, where they crouched down. “If you stood up, they would shoot you,” Bob remembered. Meanwhile, people in the front were marched forward toward large pits in the ground, then shot. As they fell into the gaping earth, more Jews were ordered forward. This systematic killing continued all day, until falling snow and darkness halted the massacre of 12,000 or more.
“Mommy, I’ll be right back.” Irene Rosenberg — then Irene Grunfeld — said as she was leaving the apartment of her cousin Mancy Weiss, where she and her mother were staying temporarily.
Rutu Modan’s recently released graphic novel, “The Property,” is the latest in a long line of works using the medium to express the Jewish experience.
Spring came exceptionally late to southern Poland this year, the patches of snow along the railway track into the former Birkenau concentration camp a reminder that winter had begun to loosen its grip just two days earlier.
Australian-based Holocaust survivor Frank Lowy delivered the keynote address at the March of the Living ceremony at Auschwitz-Birkenau on Yom Hashoah.
Poland's Jewish community has about a one month supply of kosher meat left, following a ban on ritual slaughter that went into effect at the beginning of the year.
In the summer of 1993, my father and I visited the site of the extermination camp of Belzec in eastern Poland, where my grandparents were among half a million Jews murdered by the Nazis in 1942.
"They’re going to come with the dogs. They’re going to start beating me.” Pola Lipnowski spoke in Yiddish, an expression of sheer terror on her face. She turned to her daughter, Hendel Schwartz, for protection.
My daughter, Ilana, then a young college student, asked if she could go with me to the opening of the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum, on April 22, 1993 (the date was tied to the Warsaw Ghetto Uprising’s 50th anniversary). I said: “I will be leaving very early.” She responded: “I’ll be up.”
"Sorry, children. I’m not going to jeopardize my life for your father’s money.” The Christian forester smuggling three Jewish children across the border from Poland to Slovakia had stopped abruptly, wished them luck and told them to keep walking. But Gloria Ungar — then Gitta Nagel — gripped his arm, promising that her father would make him very rich if he continued. She, her younger brother Nathan and her cousin were wending their way through a pitch-black forest. “It was terrifying,” Gloria recalled; she knew they wouldn’t make it alone. Her cousin had broken her ankle, and Nathan was crying that he couldn’t walk anymore. Plus the Germans were scanning the forest with floodlights, siccing attack dogs and then shooting whenever they saw a shadow. The children threw themselves against trees whenever the floodlights came near.
The reconstructed roof of a 17th-century synagogue was unveiled at Warsaw’s Museum of the History of Polish Jews.
Poland's Ministry of Culture and National Heritage will not continue funding the journal of "Holocaust Studies and Materials."
An Italian artist reportedly placed a statue of Adolf Hitler in a building outside what used to be the Warsaw Ghetto.
Four members of the European Parliament met with Israeli leaders during a solidarity visit to Israel following its escalated conflict with Hamas.
The following is a rundown of some Eastern European countries and where they stand on restitution:
Jewish groups said on Wednesday a Polish court ruling on methods used to slaughter livestock could halt the production of kosher meat, threatening their religious freedom in a country where Nazi Germany massacred millions of Jews in World War Two.
A constitutional court in Poland reportedly has ruled against allowing Jewish and Muslim ritual slaughter in the country.
Young Polish nationalists and anti-Semitic extreme rightists called for the overthrow of Poland at the republic's Independence Day march.
“We were over 1000 this year” - said someone on the bus as soon as we left the venue of the fifth edition of Limmud Poland, which took place between October 26-28, 2012.
An Israeli tourist visiting Poland reportedly filed a complaint with police against a taxi driver for making anti-Semitic remarks.
Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney delivered a sweeping critique on Monday of President Barack Obama's handling of threats in the Middle East, saying Obama's lack of leadership had made the volatile region more dangerous.
The Red Hot Chili Peppers made their first visit to Israel on Sept. 10, but the band member who stole the show wasn’t even onstage. Hillel Slovak – the group’s Israeli-American guitarist and co-founder – died tragically of a heroin overdose in 1988, but his presence was felt throughout every moment of the raucous performance in Tel Aviv.
After Jerzy heard about frequent vandalism at an old Jewish cemetery in his home city of Gdansk, Poland, he decided to visit the graveyard. It had fallen into such disrepair that "people would go there to drink beer," said Jerzy, who gave only his middle name due to fears of anti-Semitism.
The Polish government and the Holocaust Museum of Buenos Aires inaugurated a two-day seminar about Janusz Korczak.
Polish government officials unveiled a memorial plaque in Warsaw in honor of Warsaw Ghetto hero Janusz Korczak.
“Where are the dollars?” two plainclothes Gestapo officers demanded as they appeared without warning on both sides of Sol Berger. Sol denied any knowledge, even though the daughter of a local currency dealer was hovering nearby at the train station in Tarnow, Poland, holding the dollars he desperately needed to immigrate to Palestine.
Mitt Romney toured the site of the future Museum of the History of Polish Jews in Warsaw.
August Kowalczyk, a Polish actor who was the last survivor of a group of Polish prisoners who escaped from Auschwitz, has died.
Israel in twin ceremonies honored non-Jewish Poles who rescued Jews during the Holocaust and those who have preserved Jewish memory since World War II.
A group of Jews patronizing a restaurant in Krakow said they were verbally and physically attacked by waiters.