By SARA J. BLOOMFIELD (JTA) –The Russian invasion of Ukraine, justified by Vladimir Putin as necessary to “denazify” the country and stop “genocide,” outraged me for its blatant assault on a people, and on truth. But as I thought about his previous misuses of history, I should not have been so surprised.
In 2019, marking the 80th anniversary of the Nazi-Soviet Pact, Putin sought to downplay the significance of this agreement in starting World War II and its secret protocols that divided Poland between Hitler and Stalin — two other masters at re-writing history.
By BERNIE BELLAN Elsewhere on this website you can read our preview of Avi Posen’s presentation at this year’s Limmud (which was held on Sunday, March 6, via Zoom.)
For readers who may not have read that article, in it Avi gave an overview of the work that he has been doing in Israel for three and a half years, ever since he and his wife Illana made aliyah to Israel in 2019. You can read that article at http://jewishpostandnews.ca/local/1062-avi-posen-to-discuss-engaging-the-next-generation-of-jews-through-media-at-limmud). But what you're about to read is a report on what Avi actully had to say on March 6.
Introduction: We have been following, with dismay, the steady reporting on anti-Semitic incidents in Toronto as reported in the CJN newsletter (which is the latest incarnation of what used to be Canada’s flagship Jewish newspaper). A little while ago we were contacted by a Toronto freelance writer by the name of Ori Belmont, who asked us whether he might be able to begin contributing articles to this paper.
We asked Ori to write something about the shocking rise in incidents of anti-Semitism in Toronto within the past couple of years – that seem to have risen with the advent of Covid.
Here is what Ori sent us:
A speech by Irwin Cotler to the University of Toronto’s Temerty Faculty of Medicine on Holocaust Remembrance Day has spurred angry recriminations and two open letters to the acting dean of the medical school.
Cotler, Canada’s Special Envoy on Preserving Holocaust Remembrance and Combatting Antisemitism, was invited by the medical school’s Office of Diversity and Inclusion to discuss “Contemporary Anti-semitism” on Jan. 26.
By MYRON LOVE Growing up in Winnipeg, Oscar Antel recalls, Yiddish was the every day language of our community. And, while there are few Yiddish speakers left here now, Antel, who recently celebrated his 99th birthday, has devoted much of his life to honouring the memory of his forebears in working to preserve our ancestral language (for those of us whose origins are in eastern Europe) as a living language.
By MYRON LOVE In his practice of psychology, Dr. Alan Slusky cites his late father, Irvin Slusky, as his role model.
“My father was a lawyer,” he notes. “He taught me the importance of building relationships with people. For me, that is an essential element of my work.”
By GERRY POSNER The Lyons name is well known in Manitoba, particularly in the medical field. Just think: Dr. Ruvin Lyons, his son Dr. Ted Lyons, Dr. Ben Lyons and his son Dr. Roger Lyons - all physicians. That is quite a family medical history. Many readers will recall Ruvin Lyons as the go-to guy as an obstetrician; Ted as a world renowned radiologist and a pioneer in ultrasound; Ben Lyons, Winnipeg’s first cardiologist and the man who established the stress test for cardiac patients in Winnipeg; and Roger, listed in “America’s Top Doctors from 2000 to the present” for his work in hematology. Now that is serious talent. And I suppose you would not be surprised to learn that they are related. Ruvin and Ben were first cousins.
By BERNIE BELLAN In 2019 former Gray Academy educator Avi Posen, along with his wife, the former Illana Minuk, made aliyah to Israel, where Avi began working for an organization know as “Open Dor Media” and Illana began a four year medical program at the Technion in Haifa. (You can read about Avi’s work with Open Dor Media at http://jewishpostandnews.ca/15-news/the-cms/537-how-former-gray-academy-instructor-avi-posen-came-to-take-a-central-role-in-offering-online-education-for-jewish-schools.)
By MYRON LOVE When Martin Silvert says that he “should have been a show business journalist”, the lifelong Winnipegger isn’t kidding. He reports that he has 1100 movies on his shelves.
“Oscar night is sacred to me,” he says. I have so far watched every single show since 1962 without missing one.”
By GERRY POSNER “Serendipity” is how Morley Greene describes what has brought him success in life. Perhaps he’s right, but I concluded, after chatting with him and reading articles about him - the most recent one in the Toronto Globe and Mail, that it was more than serendipity that has given Morley the life that he has now at age 81.
In recent issues of The Jewish Post & News we've been debating whether the Simkin Centre needs to remain a fully kosher facility. Following are a number of different letters that were published in the Feb. 16 issue of the print edition, followed by an article that ran in Tablet magazine in 2019 which examined the increasing number of Jewish seniors' homes in the US that have gone non-kosher:
By JEFFREY MORRY “Can you tell where it was broken?” This was a common refrain from you throughout my childhood. In 1970, when I was nine, you left your job as a hospital administrator in Winnipeg with plans for our family to relocate to Los Angeles. But the Byzantine paperwork and looming bills for a family of six made you realize that staying in Canada and turning a hobby into a job made the most sense.
By BERNIE BELLAN The news of the passing of legendary lawyer Greg Brodsky has already been well reported in various news media.
But, aside from his numerous contributions to jurisprudence Greg Brodsky was someone who contributed a great deal of his his time to a myriad of Jewish organizations.
By GERRY POSNER I have always thought I was privileged to have grown up when and where I did, but I have learned that my children’s generation has also been imbued with this same feeling. In particular, I refer to 10 girls, now women, all born in 1970, who are all now just past 50, and who share this same sentiment. Their story almost makes one cry for a time gone by.
The ladies are: Jill (Margolis) Atnikov, Allison (Hyman) Axelrod, Davina ( Muchnik) Golden, Michelle Golfman, Jodi Hyman, Lisa (Golfman) Kroft, Marni (Fingold) Miller, Jackie (Rosen) Nash, Lisa (Hamburg) Weidman, and Samantha ( Zimberg) Adelman.
By MYRON LOVE Many readers of a certain age will no doubt have fond memories of Herschel Fox. In the 55-plus years since he left Winnipeg, he has built a notable career as both a chazzan and an entertainer – and he says that he has loved every minute of it.
Honorary Title Recognizes Exceptional Merit in Law Profession: Goertzen (January 25, 2022) The Manitoba government has appointed 11 Manitoba lawyers as Queen’s counsel to recognize their extraordinary contributions to the practise of law, Justice Minister Kelvin Goertzen announced today. Among the 11 appointees are four members of the Jewish community:
By BERNIE BELLAN The following information is taken from Naomi Ragen’s website: “Naomi Ragen is an American-born novelist, playwright and journalist who has lived in Jerusalem since 1971. She has published eleven internationally best-selling novels, and is the author of a hit play, ‘Women’s Minyan’, that has been performed more than 500 times in Israel’s National Theatre as well as in the United States and Argentine.
By MYRON LOVE It is a healthy sign when an organization – such as the Jewish Federation of Winnipeg – can continue to attract new and enthusiastic staff members. Such is the case with the Federation’s three latest hires – and a diverse trio they are: Abby Flackman, Ian Baruch, and Evelyn Orlovitz.
Three have had open and fair admission policies throughout their histories, but now there are questions about how Shalom Gardens accepts new applicants
By BERNIE BELLAN There have been several periods in the history of Winnipeg’s Jewish community that saw bursts of construction activity of different sorts.
Perhaps the most notable period was the post-war era following World War II when, in no particular order, the community saw the building within a ten-year period of: the Shaarey Zedek, Rosh Pina, Adas Yeshurun (and Herzlia Academy), and Talmud Torah synagogues, along with the YMHA on Hargrave, Talmud Torah and I.L. Peretz schools, Joseph Wolinsky Collegiate, and Ramah Hebrew School.
By IRENA KARSHENBAUM There has been renewed interest recently in the life of Henrietta Szold, whose name is not as well known as it should be given that she saved 11,000 children from perishing in the Holocaust and improved the lives of millions of people.
By BERNIE BELLAN The story you’re about to read started off in one direction – then, following a phone call I received Tuesday evening, January 25, took a completely different – and frighteningly eerie direction.
My original story was going to be about a new book that is about to be launched titled “The End of Her”. The book’s author, Wayne Hoffman, is someone who first came to my attention, and subsequently the attention of our readers, in 2015 when he sent me a tantalizingly provocative email whose subject was the long-ago murder of his great-grandmother, Sarah Feinstein.
By BERNIE BELLAN In November 2016 we received a very interesting email from someone by the name of Wayne Hoffman. As it turned out, Wayne was the executive editor of Tablet magazine, an online Jewish magazine, from which we’ve run stories from time to time.
By MYRON LOVE You might say that community involvement is part of Gustavo Zentner’s DNA.
The new president of the Jewish Federation of Winnipeg – who originally hails from the city of Corrientes in northeastern Argentina – notes that his great-grandfather –
Book review by TOBY KLEIN GEENWALD Dr. Shoshana Levin Fox has authored a book that will hold you spellbound. Section I is titled “Children.” These first eight chapters are the stories of Jack, Sasha, Annie and others (all the children’s names used are pseudonyms) – children who came into the Feuerstein Institute after having been diagnosed as autistic. They exited with new hope, not only for themselves, but for their parents, who were usually devastated by their children’s diagnoses and needed their own emotional propping up.
By GERRY POSNER If you want to find a life that has had a series of twists and turns mixed in with a wide variety of experiences, look no further than Joe Diner. He has had a lifetime of what I would call rich experiences in many different places and settings.
By SIMONE COHEN SCOTT Jan. 16, 2022 Jerusalem These past months in Jerusalem were different than other years when I’ve had a foot in both Israel and Canada. For one thing, this time I used a travel agency instead of my usual CheapOair website. A good thing too, as I was a document short checking in, and was told I could only get as far as Toronto. A quick call to my travel wizard fixed that.
By MARTIN ZEILIG Haskel Greenfield has spent a good deal of his professional life as an archeologist attempting to uncover the mysteries of the Canaanite culture.
It’s not been an easy task. But, oh so fascinating.
By MYRON LOVE While graphic designer Steven Rosenberg’s name may be unfamiliar to most readers, his work is not. Rosenberg is a partner in Doowah Design. Every time you see a brochure, a poster or online art promoting the Winnipeg Art Gallery, the Manitoba Theatre for Young People, the Winnipeg Jewish Theatre and a host of other arts bodies, you are most likely looking at Doowah’s creations.
By BERNIE BELLAN In our August 17, 2019 issue we featured an article by Rebeca Kuropatwa about a program that had been in place for several years, run by Dina Raihman. Here's part of what Rebeca wrote back then (with updates from Dina provided on January 28, 2022):
Introduction: We were sent this short story by John Ginsburg, who is a Winnipeg writer. Given the constant stream of stories about students and professors being intimidated by forces championing political correctness, especially when it comes to anything having to do with Israel, we thought it timely to publish the story here.
June 2021 Mackenzie King College Walking east, past the Theatre building, the view was genuinely inspiring, especially in the bright morning sunshine.