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June 29, 2007

100 Years Ago in the forward

The situation on the streets of Manhattan’s Lower East Side is terrible. The entire population is threatened with illness because of a sanitation workers’ strike. The neighborhood’s sidewalks are piled high with overflowing ash cans, and rotting garbage is sizzling in the summer heat. Making matters worse, the Sanitation Department has hired scab workers to replace the strikers, and both groups have been duking it out in the stinking, garbage-filled streets. These scabs tend to be immigrants right off the boat, and seem unaware that they are replacing strikers.

75 Years Ago in the forward

On the Upper East Side, which holds the heart of New York City’s German population, the Nazis are very popular and their rhetoric about Jews has been heard quite a bit. But this week, for the first time, a protest was held by a large group of pro-Nazi sympathizers against the antisemitic propaganda of the Nazi Party. The protest began at a party meeting, when one Wilhelm Reinbrecht openly took one of the main speakers to task for mimicking Hitler’s antisemitic sentiment: likening Jews to vampires sucking the blood of Germans and proclaiming the need to remove the Jews from Germany. Upon hearing these words, Reinbrecht, who is not Jewish, responded by saying that German Jews are good citizens and that they defended the Fatherland heroically in The Great War.

A battle between Smith and Cohen is being waged in New York City. Smith was once stronger than Cohen, but in most cases, Cohen comes out the winner. But who are Smith and Cohen? They’re everywhere; they work in all occupations, they live in all boroughs. So what’s in a name? Cohen is a Jewish name, Smith is usually English or Irish. And where is this battle taking place? In the New York City phonebook, that’s where. Just open it to see the huge number of people who have these last names, the two most common in New York City.

50 Years Ago in the forward

A recent immigrant to Israel from the Soviet Union has informed the press that during last year’s Sinai campaign, antisemitism increased significantly in the USSR. Schoolteachers were forced to give lectures on the “horrible acts the Zionists have committed against the poor Arab masses.” In some cases, Jewish students questioned these lectures and were roundly abused. One Jewish student was even stabbed. On top of this general antisemitism, all Soviet workers were told that they were required to work extra hours to help support “the poor Egyptian people, who had been attacked by Israel.”

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