For the Jews of Russia, World War I Brought Persecutions, Slaughter, and Poverty

The opening months of World War I brought unmitigated disaster to Russian Jewry as the tsar’s army, blaming them for its own failures, punished Jews with massacres and expulsions. Then, in the latter half of 1915, much of the Pale of Settlement—where Russian Jews were concentrated—fell under a German military occupation that, while rarely anti-Semitic, was both harsh and immiserating. The war’s end brought even bloodier slaughter as various armies competed for mastery in Eastern Europe. Taking the city of Vilna as his prime example, Andrew Koss discusses with Avi Woolf the Jewish experience during the war and its aftermath. (Audio, 70 minutes.)

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More about: Anti-Semitism, Jewish history, Russian Jewry, Vilna, World War I

The Palestinian Authority Deliberately Provoked Sunday’s Jerusalem Riots

Aug. 16 2019

On Sunday, Tisha b’Av—the traditional day of mourning for the destruction of the two Jerusalem Temples—coincided with the Muslim festival of Eid al-Adha. While the Israeli government had initially banned Jews from the Temple Mount on that day, it later reversed its decision and allowed a few dozen to visit. Muslim worshippers greeted them by throwing chairs and stones, and police had to quell the riot by force. Just yesterday, an Israeli policeman was stabbed nearby. Maurice Hirsch and Itamar Marcus place the blame for Sunday’s violence squarely on the shoulders of the Palestinian Authority:

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More about: Palestinian Authority, Temple Mount, Tisha b'Av