The Fight for Labor in the Public Sector

LESSONS FROM AN ENDURING LOCAL, SSEU 371 by Alexander Bernhardt Bloom From the Spring 2017 issue of Jewish Currents THE PHONES rarely stopped ringing in the wing of the union’s headquarters assigned to Grievances. This was a good place for me to begin, explained Shirley. Here I’d get to know the members and their work through their […]

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May 6: The Chinese Exclusion Act

President Chester A. Arthur signed the Chinese Exclusion Act on this date in 1882. The law shut down for ten years the immigration of Chinese laborers that had begun during the California Gold Rush of 1848 and the building of the transcontinental railroad. The restriction would be extended in ten year chunks until 1902, when […]

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February 27: German Wives Protest

On this date in 1943, the Nazi Gestapo began arresting more than 10,000 Jews in the city of Berlin. Those who were intermarried (primarily men) and some children of those intermarriages were imprisoned at Rosenstrasse, a Jewish community center. The next morning, many of the men’s wives congregated at the building and shouted for the […]

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December 1: Protesting the Armenian Genocide, 1895

The New York Times reported on this date in 1895 that Rabbi Joseph Silverman, the leader of New York’s massive Temple Emanu-El, had the day before “delivered an eloquent sermon” urging Jewish solidarity with Armenians who were being killed by Turkey during the Hamidian Massacres, 1894-1896, which orphaned some 50,000 Armenian children in a prelude […]

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Marek Edelman, the Heroic Anti-Hero

“I am the Guardian of the Jewish Graves” by Itzhak Luden Translated from the Yiddish by Barnett Zumoff; published in the Yiddish Forverts, 10/5/2009 In principle, the most important thing is — life. And when there is life, the most important thing is freedom. And after that, one gives his life for freedom. Then one […]

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September 30: The Righteous Egyptian

Dr. Mohamed Helmy became the first Egyptian recognized by Yad Vashem as “Righteous Among the Nations” on this date in 2013. Helmy went to Germany from Khartoum in 1922 and became a researcher at the Robert Koch Institute in Berlin. Defined as a “descendant of Ham” by Nazi racial policy, he was dismissed in 1937 […]

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The Terror and Trauma of Being Black

by Mark Naison Discussed in this essay: Between the World and Me, by Ta-Nehisi Coates. Spiegel & Grau, 2015, 176 pages LET ME SAY at the outset that I cannot be objective in reviewing Ta-Nehisi Coates new book, Between the World and Me, which is addressed to his 15-year-old son, who burst into tears when learning […]

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Le Groupe Manouchian

Betrayed Heroes of the French Resistance? by Mitchell Abidor From the Spring, 2015 issue of Jewish Currents IT WAS LATE FEBRUARY, 1944 when the German Occupation authorities in France decided that the time had come to stage the trial of a group of Resistance fighters they’d captured the previous autumn. Under ordinary circumstances, trials of […]

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