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August 7, 2009

100 Years Ago in the Forward

Two sisters, 18- and 19-year-old Rebecca and Annie Abrams, were sitting in a Philadelphia park, relaxing and talking with a friend, when suddenly they were attacked by a group of hobos. Although there were numerous people milling about, no one offered help when the Abrams sisters called out for it. Not knowing what to do, the sisters decided there was no choice but to defend themselves against their attackers, which they did with much bravery. In fact, the group of bums that attacked them quickly regretted having done so. Rebecca and Annie beat them up until they had had enough and ran off.

75 Years Ago in the Forward

In Algeria, a massive two-day pogrom broke out. More than 100 Jews have been killed and more than 300 wounded. The Jewish community of the city of Constantine bore the brunt of the attack, during which Arab attackers robbed and burned numerous Jewish-owned stores and homes; however, attacks occurred in a number of smaller locales, as well. The pogrom began after a rumor spread that a drunken Jewish soldier walked into a mosque and began cursing those at prayer inside. Furious, the Muslims poured into the Jewish quarter and began attacking. The Jews of the quarter defended themselves, and the battle lasted an entire day. At that point, leaders of both the Jewish and Muslim communities held a meeting to put an end to the fighting, but Muslims attacked again the following day.

50 Years Ago in the Forward

New York’s police are keeping an eye on a new antisemitic organization that calls itself “The Moslems” and was created by the son of a Protestant minister, who now calls himself Elijah Muhammad. Preaching a racist and antisemitic doctrine, Muhammad said at a recent meeting, “Every white man knows his time has come — it’s over for him. I have come to teach you how to be free — free of the burden of the white man. We are calling for unity of colored people throughout the world. Only then will we rule America and deal with the white man as necessary.” Roy Wilkins, leader of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People,

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