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Culture

October 31, 2003

100 YEARS AGO

• The uptown reformers are at it again. A group of [Republican Tom] Platt’s hypocrites have come to the Lower East Side to remind us of all the favors they’ve done for the Jews. They want to make sure they’ll be repaid on Election Day. So they opened a little park on Hester Street. How is it that they happened to have an official ceremony just before Election Day? Mayor Lowe and a group of reformers showed up at this ceremony, saying we had to thank God and the reformers for the little park. Such favors. The Jewish workers won’t be paying them back with any votes.

75 YEARS AGO

• A new kind of Simchat Torah was celebrated in Tel Aviv this week — a bloody one. In honor of Vladimir Jabotinsky’s arrival, his followers took it upon themselves to crack some heads at a Labor Zionist Simchat Torah literary event. A number of Yiddish writers read some of their recent works. The hall was packed, with people outside listening through open windows. When the reading ended and people began to file out, a group of revisionists showed up and forced the crowd back inside the hall. They then began throwing bricks at the windows, stage and audience. The Labor Zionist club was badly damaged, and a number of people were bleeding and suffering from head injuries. This violence lasted for about 15 minutes, and no police showed up. The chutzpah of the revisionists was incredible: An hour after the attack, when thousands of Labor Zionists were still in the streets, the revisionists marched through them, singing songs.

50 YEARS AGO

• Secretary of State John Foster Dulles announced this week that economic aid to Israel would be stopped. He said the decision was made because Israel has refused to stop work on a hydroelectric project on the Syrian border, a demand made by the United Nations. In addition, Dulles noted that Israel had acted against the wishes of the U.N. when it moved its Foreign Ministry offices from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem. This, he said, only served to worsen the situation.

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