February 10, 2006


There are all sorts of new sports that one can find here in the New World. One of them, which seems to have been imported from France, is hot air balloon sailing. One of its main enthusiasts, a balloonist by the name of Levy, has sailed into New York this week from France. Visiting the New York Velo Club, Levy gave a demonstration of hot air ballooning in which he hopped into the balloon and shot up 3,000 feet into the clouds. And it was then that his troubles began: The weather was so cold, he almost froze; he nearly took a plunge into the Hudson River and almost crashed into a hill. Levy claims he never had any ballooning trouble until he came to New York.


Jewish vice-squad cop Harry Levy became the star witness in a case that has shaken up the New York City Police Department. Levy testified in an ongoing corruption case that he and his family received death threats from officers James Queenleavon and William O’Connor. For their part, these two officers have testified that they know nothing about these accusations and said that Levy was simply trying to slander them. Even after evidence including telegrams and checks they had sent to Levy was presented, the two still denied any involvement.

The grand mufti of Jerusalem, the leader of the Palestinian Muslims, announced that he wants to transform the city of Jerusalem into a cultural and religious center for the world’s Muslims. This plan was revealed in Jaffa at a meeting of the Muslim-Christian Society. The mufti also said that Jewish political demands and Jewish immigration to Palestine are great dangers for the region. A member of the society, Shaukat Eli, said that he was willing to attempt to arrange a peace agreement between the Arabs and Jews and that he recently had met in London with Chaim Weitzman regarding the matter.


Famed Yiddish theater composer Joseph Rumshinsky died this week at the age of 75. The great conductor, who composed music for directors Boris Thomashevsky, Jacob P. Adler and David Kessler, among others, died after an emergency operation to remove gallstones. Rumshinsky also composed works specific to a number of top actors, including Bertha Kalish and Ludwig Satz. Most of New York’s and even much of the world’s Yiddish theater resounded with his music, and many a theatergoer left a show humming tunes that he composed. This is, no doubt, a great loss for Yiddish theater.

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February 10, 2006

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