The Internet reverberated yesterday with details about how, exactly, neo-Nazis identify and target Jews on social media and online. By placing an “echo,” a symbol consisting of three parentheses around a (((Jewish-sounding name))), white supremacists and anti-Semites — many of them self-identified Trump supporters — signal to each other who is (((Jewish))) and band together to harass, intimidate and flood their social media accounts with Holocaust and anti-Semitic imagery.
Jared Kushner, Trump’s Jewish son in law, was even listed on a database of Jewish individuals to target. The list, though alarming, is not quite complete, so we thought we could help out the anti-Semites by sending out echoes of our own:
(((Mel Brooks))) killed it as Adolf Hitler in “The Producers.”
(((Jesus of Nazareth))), a (((Jew))) who preached love and peace.
(((Woody Allen))) was a “real” Jew in “Annie Hall.”
(((Moses))), the original Nice (((Jewish))) boy.
The (((Statue of Liberty))), stands for no one faith but for American values of tolerance and openness.
Well, rankings of the world’s most famous people from the past 6,000 years are in.
Israeli-born actress Natalie Portman has beat out Ariel Sharon, Moses has an ever-so-slight lead over Muhammad and Jesus Christ is apparently the world’s number one Jew.
The project, an endeavor of the Macro Connections group at MIT’s media lab, includes more than 11,000 of the world’s most popular individuals.
Aptly titled Pantheon, the website includes lists breaking down icons by locale and profession, but also allows users to manipulate the parameters and disregard time, profession and place. So American porn-star Jenna Jameson, Portuguese soccer player Christiano Ronaldo and the late Greek philosopher Aristotle go head-to-head on the same 11,334 famous persons list, which spans from the years 4,000 BCE to 2010.
Martin Luther King Jr. tops the list of Americans and film director Stanley Kubrick, the top Jew on the list, places in at 23rd. Film director Steven Spielberg and linguist Noam Chomsky, both Jewish, also make the top 100 of the famous Americans list.
The project assigns figures to the modern national borders of their birthplace.
The MIT project’s methodology page admits the inevitable shortcomings and incompleteness of their endeavor, which largely relies on Wikipedia entries. Creators included individuals whose biographies have been translated into more than 25 languages and says the project measures “historical cultural popularity and production.”
Here are some findings using their lists.
World’s top 5 Jews:
-Jesus Christ, Palestine (4 BCE)
-Moses, Egypt (1394 BCE)
-Abraham, Unknown (3500 BCE)
-Albert Einstein, Germany (1879)
-Karl Marx, Germany (1818)
America’s top 5 Jews:
-Stanley Kubrick (1928)
-Isaac Asimov (1920)
-Steven Spielberg (1946)
-Noam Chomsky (1928)
-Zac Efron (1987)
Israel’s top 5 (4000 BCE – 2010):
-Solomon (1000 BCE)
-Mary (100 BCE)
-John the Baptist (5 BCE)
-Mary Magdalene (1)
-Isaac (3500 BCE)
Palestine’s top 5 (4000 BCE – 2010):
-Jesus Christ (4 BCE)
-David (1040 BCE)
-Saint George (280)
-Herod the Great (73 BCE)
-Saint Joseph (90 BCE)
The Modern State of Israel’s top 5 (those born in Israel included):
-Natalie Portman (1981)
-Ariel Sharon (1928)
-Yitzhak Rabin (1922
-Moshe Dayan (1915)
-Benjamin Natanyahu (1949)
“Les Miserables” is an epic tale of suffering, oppression, and one man’s quest to find himself. Is it just me, or have we heard that story before?
No, sadly, Victor Hugo was not a secret Jew. But Claude-Michel Schönberg and Alain Boublil, who wrote the lyrics of the famous musical, are. Schönberg was born in Vannes, France, the son of Hungarian Jewish immigrants, in 1944. Boublil, a Sephardic Jew, was born in Tunisia in 1941.
So perhaps it’s fair to say they picked up the similarities between Jean Valjean, a ex-convict on the run from the law who seeks to reinvent himself once he hears God’s call, and Moses — not to mention the living conditions for the poor in 19th century France, akin to Egyptian slavery.
The Maccabeats —the all-male a cappella group out of Yeshiva University — took notice of the parallels and the opportunity was too good to pass up. From “Look Down” to “Do You Hear The People Sing,” it’s a sight to behold.
Italian author Erri De Luca shares two passions with the Biblical lawgiver Moses: mountaineering and the Hebrew language. Such is the message of “And He Said,” translated from the Italian original which appeared from Feltrinelli Editore last year..
Born in 1950 in Naples, Luca was a militant leftist in “Lotta continua” (Continuous Struggle), a group which comprised several activists of Jewish origin, including Gad Lerner and Alexander Langer. After years in the masonry trade as a laborer, Luca became fascinated with the Bible and the Hebrew language, which he began to study in 1983 before making a humanitarian trip to Africa. This fascination increased, and Luca eventually produced translations into Italian of the Books of Exodus; Jonah; Ecclesiastes, and others. Luca also learned Yiddish in order to translate Itzhak Katzenelson’s poem “Song of the Murdered Jewish People,”, about the Warsaw Ghetto.
“And He Said” notes that Moses repeatedly climbed Sinai as the first alpinist in recorded history. An avid mountaineer himself, Luca describes the Hebrew language in lively poetic terms, likening the letter Yod to an “apostrophe located on top of a line, an almond on a branch.” Luca stresses the emotional ties between 20th century Jews and Southern Europeans who “boarded the same ships” as humble emigrants; Italians “fled poverty, and [Jews] the burning houses of pogroms.” Whereas Italians “left their bitter homeland, [Jews] went from one exile to another. We journeyed together to the four corners of the wind.” These emotional consonances inspired Luca to start every day at 5AM by reading a passage in Hebrew, although without any intention of actually converting to Judaism. As Luca puts it, “I share the journey of Judaism, not its arrival. My dwelling place is not in the Promised Land, but on the outskirts of the encampment…My share of manna is assured by readings in Hebrew, begun before each dawn.” Luca describes himself quixotically: “Just as a youth departing from his homeplace to follow a circus caravan, so did I begin to follow the people of Sinai.” Luca concludes that for him, Judaism is a “caravan pathway of consonants accompanied above and below the line by vowels flying hither and thither.”
“And He Said,” an ardent love letter to the Hebrew language, deserves prompt translation into English, as do Luca’s essays about Bible readings, “A Cloud-Carpet”; “Olive Pit”; and “My Tongue Doth Cleave to my Palate”, the last-mentioned an allusion to Psalm 137.
Listen to Erri de Luca on French radio here.
Watch Erri de Luca explain on Italian TV in 2011 why he wrote about Moses here.
“From Moses to Moses, there was none like Moses,” goes the rabbinic saying on the Biblical Moses and his namesake, the twelfth century philosopher and halachic authority Moses Maimonides. Author of the “Guide to the Perplexed” and other famous works the latter Moses brought enlightenment to the masses. But the Israel Electric Corporation has left him in the dark.
It has disconnected the electricity from his tomb and the surrounding complex in the northern Israel city of Tiberius. The site, a popular place of pilgrimage, is now open to visitors only during the daytime. According to this report the organization that runs the site owes the equivalent of $12,000 in unpaid bills.
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