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HERITAGE FLORIDA JEWISH NEWS, JUNE 21, 2013 Memorials From page 2A Finkelstein, the head of the federation. The Jews of Des Moines are hardly the first to push for such a project. Though precise numbers are difficult to come by, Ho- locaust studies experts say museums and monuments dedicated to the genocide have proliferated across the United States over the past two decades. Major American cities typically have at least one Holocaust memorial, but now many midsized ones do too, like Richmond, Va., Charleston, S.C., and El Paso, Texas. Memorials are even found in relatively small cities, like Whitwell, Tenn., and Palm Desert, Calif. And more are in the works, including a recently approved monument de- signed by architect Daniel Libeskind to be built on the statehouse grounds in Columbus, Ohio. The phenomenon is also not a uniquely American one. Norway, a country with only 1,300 Jews, has two Holocaust memorials. "There are probably more than 300 Holocaust study centers and museums around the country, and the number of memorials would be hard to track down because of all the small ones," said James Young, a professor of English and Judaic studies at the Uni- versity of Massachusetts in Amherst and the author of a book about Holocaust remembrance. "Just in Manhattan, there are 80. Multiply that and you probably have thou- sands." Young says the single most important factor driving the construction of Holocaust memorials nearly 70 years after the war is the initiative of el- derly survivors. With the youngest of them nearing 80, survivors are eager to educate future generations about their suffering and, in so doing, give meaning to their lives. "It doesn't take a big community," Young said. "If someone is inspired to build a memorial site, it is possible to do so." One such person was Eva Mozes Kor, 79, who along with her twin sister was subjected to savage medical experiments carried out by Nazi war criminal Dr. Josef Mengele. In 1995, Kor founded the CANDLES Holocaust Muse- um and Education Center in Terre Haute, a small city in western Indiana where she has lived since the 1950s, with the aim of sharing her story with her neighbors. Each year about 75,000 mostly non-Jewish children visit the center from nearby rural areas of western and central Indiana. Kor and two other survivors, includ- ing her husband, present lectures to the young visi- tors. "I want to teach children in the world," she said. "I think [the Holocaust] is not a Christian thing, not a Jewish thing, it's a human thing." For Jewish leaders, Ho- locaust memorializing is often away to build commu- nity around a non-religious issue. "The creation of a Ho- locaust memorial is likely something everybody can cooperate on," said Jona- than Sarna, a professor of Jewish studies at Brandeis University. "The minute you touch Israel, it's divisive. But for Jews and Christians to get together to commem- orate the Holocaust, that can bring them together, especially in smaller com- munities." But Holocaust com- memoration also has been driven by Christians such as Michael Tudor, a Louisiana lawyer and a Baptist. He came up with the idea of building a Holocaust me- morial while jogging past a sculpture by the Israeli artist Yaacov Again in New Orleans dedicated to the memory of the victims. If everything goes ac- cording to plan, Tudor will break ground on a Holocaust memorial in his hometown of Alexandria (population: 47,000) in November. "I can think of many rea- sons we ought to have one even though we are a small city," Tudor said. "There's a real historical tie to the liberation of camps. And we've always had a vibrant Jewish community for a small town. They've been the foundation blocks of our community." The privately funded PAGE 19A $80,000 structure will feature an 18-foot granite obelisk--"because 18 is a symbolic number in the Hebrew tradition," Tudor said--and be engraved with the famous poem "First they came" by the German pastor Martin Niemoler. The memorial also will remember local U.S. sol- diers who participated in the liberation of the camps, as well as the victims and survivors. "The greatest generation is dying out and people's memories are fading," Tu- dor said. "You realize, if not now, when?" Young expects that with the youngest survivors becoming octogenarians, the trend is unlikely to continue indefinitely. Once they pass, the money and motivation for such proj- ects may disappear as well. "The next generation," Young said, "might be less likely to be doing this." Study From page 4A the ancient text come alive, prompting discussions relevant today. A look at the day's sched- ule on the blackboard reveals the eclectic na- ture of the program: a 6:30 a.m. class in Zionist literature, followed by the current class on "The Jewish Bookshelf." Then comes a philosophy class on Kant's ethics, a meal (all the meals are prepared by the students themselves), a yoga session, a class on the writing of Edgar Allan Poe (in English), dinner, and evening studies that includes courses on classi- cal music, economics and the writings of Rav Kook, Israel's first chief rabbi. There is an emphasis on Bible and Talmud, and each night the last session is a chavruta-style review of all that was learned that day. "I get energy from every- one here," said an enthusi- astic Gelbart. I also spoke with a young man from Beersheba wear- ing a kipa (kippot are op- tional), who recently com- pleted his army service in an elite unit of paratroopers. Speaking softly he said he grew up observant but had turned away from that life. "I came here because I wanted to start loving again the Jewish sources," he said. His study partner for that session was Tamar, a young Sephardic woman from Rishon L'Tzion. She said she came to Ein Prat "to learn who I am and where I came from, and because I want my children to know where they come from." She acknowledged that three months into the pro- gram, she is less concerned now about matters like separating meat and milk in her eating habits, which she had done out of habit. Was Goodman, an ob- servant Jew, bothered to hear that? "Not at all," he said, explaining that Tamar and others like her are finding new avenues to express their Judaism based on knowledge and reflection, and noted that patterns of observance often fluctuate. Rabbi Benny Lau, a prom- inent Religious Zionist rabbi in Jerusalem who teaches at Ein Prat one day aweek, believes that part of the reason why Goodman has been so successful is precisely because Ein Prat does not make ritual de- mands on its students. "He has found the key to open the gates for young Israelis without judging them," Rabbi Lau says. "For most Israelis, when they hear about programs that teach Torah, they as- sume the goal is to make them frum [observant], but this program takes people where they are." Though Ein Prat follows halacha, or Jewish law, in its practice, the rabbi said Goodman cares most that partici- pants "come away with a language of the spiritual life and [a sense of] the Jewish people." Lau said Goodman is breaking down "the walls of hate" that separate the religious and secular in Israeli society, and he is op- timistic that the program, as it grows, can attract thousands of young Israelis in the hopes that they will become leaders in their various fields and transmit a feeling of understanding toward others. "We'll know in the next five or 10 years" about the impact ofEin Prat, he said, noting with regret that few of his rabbinic colleagues are aware of or appreciate its work. Can a program like Ein Prat be effective in Amer- ica? Goodman points out the uniqueness of the Israeli experience as a key to its success so far. "We are focusing on young people at a critical moment in their lives, after their national service and before they start univer- sity-before they become ambitious," he adds with a smile, adding that Ameri- cans never seem to have a period of life when they are not ambitious. The young Israelis leave Ein Prat "with great ideas, great books and best friends," says Goodman, who believes Israeli society is undergoing a reformation of secularism. "Something is happen- ing now with Judaism in Israel. In the past secular Zionism replaced religion" for many Israelis, "but now there's more interest in Judaism." It's not about becoming observant but about connecting their Israeli and Jewish identi- ties in a meaningful way, he says. "And we want to be at the front of that movement." Gary Rosenblatt is editor and publisher of The New York Jewish Week, from which this article was re- printed by permission. You can reach him at Gary@ Payback From page 5A Godfather's daughter, when all favors are granted. Now Bonasera says, "For justice, we must go to the Godfa- ther." Bonasera wants the rapists killed. The Godfather says no. Bonasera's daughter, af- ter all, is still alive. When Bonasera leaves, the Don instructs his consiglieri, "Give this to, uh, Clemenza. I want reliable people, people who aren't going to get car- ried away." The Godfather, writes Rosenbaum, "will only ensure that the ]rapists] will be beaten up, measure for measure, in the same way as they had beaten up Marriage From page 6A American Jewish organiza- tions to push for civil mar- riage in Israel. The timing is good. For the first time in decades, the ultra-Orthodox parties are not in Israel's governing coalition. Finance Minister Yair Lapid, whose Yesh Atid party was the big winner in the election, has repeatedly said he supports civil marriage in Israel. Bonasera's daughter--but no more .... Revenge is a balancing act that is steadied by a fine sense of proportion." The story echoes Gen- esis, when Dinah, Jacob's daughter, is raped by Shechem, a local chief- tain. Shechem was more misguided than malicious; this was a date rape, says Rosenbaum. It was a crime but on some level Shechem and Dinah were soul mates. The Torah says, "his soul cleaved onto her.., he loved her" and wanted to marry her. Yet the rape demanded vengeance. Shechem's people offered gifts and deals to Jacob's family in exchange for allowing the marriage. Jacob's sons, Shimon and Levi (Dinah's brothers by the same mother, responsible for her honor) make a coun- teroffer: if Shechem and all his men would undergo a circumcision, he could marry Dinah. While newly circumcised were recover- ing from the pain, Shimon and Levi killed Shechem, along with every one of his tribe, looting everything they had. Jacob was furious, afraid that since his family was "few in number," the aveng- ers of Shechem "will gather themselves against me and kill me." "When vengeance is taken to excess," explains Rosen- baum over the phone, "it ceases to be revenge and can turn into a blood feud that knows no end." Exces- sive vengeance loses moral authority "and when that happens, the retaliation... is neither vengeance nor justice." Shechem was avenged, but poetically by Jewish tradition. After all, he and his men earned spiritual grace for having been cir- cumcised. The Ari (Rabbi Yitzhak Luria), father of the Kabbalah, taught that the souls of Dinah and Shechem were given the gift of return- ing centuries later as Cozbi and Zimri in the Book of "I am going to do every- thing in my power to make sure there will be civil mar- riages in Israel. The complete dominance of the Orthodox rabbis in Israel over divorces and marriages is an insult," Lapid told American Jewish leaders earlier this year. A spokesman for the Rab- binate in Israel declined to comment. Yet in the past Orthodox leaders have said they will never allow civil marriage in Israel, and that it would split the Jewish people in two. Proponents argue that civil marriage would solve another problem in Israel--that of husbands who blackmail or refuse to give their wives a "get," a religious divorce. Without the "get" women are unable to remarry. Hundreds of women are trapped in this situation and countless others have paid heavily for the "get." A civil marriage would only necessitate a civil divorce. Yet Regev says it will still be an uphill battle. As part of its conditions for joining the government, the BayitYehudi party headed by Naftali Ben- nett demanded and received a clause that any legislative change on religious issues requires the agreement of all coalition parties. "That means they have veto power and they have already said they would not support civil marriage." Numbers--where they were murdered for sexual misbe- havior. And so the souls, still in need of love and healing, returned again, centuries later, in Roman times, this time as the Talmud's Rabbi Akiva and Madam Turnus Rufus, the ex-wife of the Roman governor, who con- verted and became Akiva's second wife. Meanwhile, the souls of Shechem's circum- cised tribe, taught the Ari, returned as Akiva's yeshiva students, the ones who died during the Omer. It is said that when Akiva first saw his future wife he laughed, cried and spit. He spit because of her first marriage. He cried because he could see their death. He laughed because he loved her. Vengeance was theirs. Jonathan Mark is associ- ate editor at The New York Jewish Week, from which" this article was reprinted by permission. Sudoku solution from page 7 481953762 596427318 723861459 857236194 649185237 132794685 314578926 268349571 975612843