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January 19, 2007

100 Years Ago In the Forward

Mixed marriages are all the rage nowadays. We’ve recently received numerous letters from Jewish men and women who have married non-Jews and live their lives quite happily. There’s no point in getting agitated either for or against the phenomenon; the masses always do what they want. They can scream about it all they want in the synagogues and study houses that the Jews will disappear. But is this true? Absolutely not. Throughout their history, Jews have married non-Jews. Even if you go back to the beginning, Abraham, Isaac and Jacob all had gentile wives. So there’s nothing new here.

75 Years Ago In the Forward

With freshly manicured nails and a trim haircut, 28-year-old Edward Collins, a Jew from New York, was hanged this week on the gallows in Belfast, Ireland. Accused of murdering a Turk, one Ahmed Mussa, Collins professed his innocence until the end, saying he had been framed. He was joined by Belfast’s Chief Rabbi Shechter on his way to the gallows. Just before his execution, he gave a heartrending speech in which he thanked Shechter, the governor, the staff of the prison and the hundreds of Jews from around the world who wrote to him to give support.

A group of liberal and progressive senators have begun to lobby President Herbert Hoover to fill the seat on the Supreme Court recently vacated by Oliver Wendell Holmes, who retired on account of his age. The main candidate being promoted by these liberals, Benjamin Cardozo, holds the highest judicial position on New York’s State of Appeals Court. Cardozo, a Jew born in New York City, is being touted as one of the most stellar and influential judicial minds in the country. Because Holmes was a progressive, liberal judge, Hoover is expected to replace him with a liberal.

50 Years Ago In the Forward

Bit by bit, information is leaking out of the Soviet Union about the period from 1948 to 1952, called “The Black Years” by many Soviet Jews. Hyman Levi, a professor, wrote in the World News, England’s communist newspaper, that upon visiting Moscow last fall, he found that the period was marked by a virulent prejudice against Jews in which they were fired from their jobs simply because of their ethnic origins. All Jews lived in fear of being arrested at any time, and thousands were, in fact, arrested and imprisoned. Many were never heard from again. These numbers included not only well-known authors and cultural figures, but common workers, as well.

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