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Looking Back: September 30

100 Years Ago in the Forward

Three Jews are about to go on trial on charges of espionage: brothers Shishl and Yosl Weissman, and their cousin, Wolf Steinberg, who runs a saloon not far from the Russian border. They were also part of an illegal immigration ring. Because the Russian border guardpost could be seen from a window in their saloon, they were able to keep tabs on the guards. But they also had connections with the Okhrana, the Russian secret police, and when the illegal immigrants who passed through their hands didn’t have enough money to pay them off, they informed on them to the police. The Weissmans and Steinberg allegedly also sold information about Austrian military activities to the Okhrana, which is the cause of most of their trouble.

75 Years Ago in the Forward

The city’s buildings were draped in black today as Tel Aviv’s mayor, Meyer Dizengoff, who died earlier this week, was brought to burial by a massive cortege of 120,000 mourners. Rooftops and balconies were packed with onlookers as the procession wound its way through the streets of Tel Aviv. Dizengoff was a beloved figure in the Yishuv and people from all walks of life, from socialists to capitalists, from atheists to the religious, mourned the loss of a great man. Fulfilling one of his final wishes, Dizengoff’s body was brought to burial by a group of children and laid to rest next to his late wife, their graves located between those of Zionist leaders Ahad Ha’am and Max Nordau.

50 Years Ago in the Forward

Syrians are dancing in the street after their government proclaimed that they are no longer part of Gamal Abdel Nasser’s United Arab Republic, a pan-Arab pact that had united Syria and Egypt in a single political unit. Jordan and Turkey immediately recognized newly independent Syria and it is expected that other Arab countries will as well. Egypt had begun to mount an invasion in order to maintain the pact, but it was called off as it became clear that their Syrian cronies would not be able to hold onto power. In order to save face during the crisis, Nasser said that he called the invasion off because he didn’t want “Arabs to fight Arabs.”

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