יום שני ט"ז בתמוז תשפ"ד 22/07/2024
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  • The Mission Continues

    As in the past so it remains today - we were and still are under the selfsame commitment to adhere to the directions of the Gedolei Yisrael, who stand guard against breaches of purity threatening our camp. When we were required to ask – we asked. When we were instructed to depart – we left. The moment we are summoned back to raise the flag, every other consideration is pushed to the side and we answer: We are ready!

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בראי היום

  • Harav Yisrael Friedman zy”a, the Rebbe of Husyatin

    מוטי, ויקיפדיה העברית

    The ancestral chain of Harav Yisrael Friedman, the founder of the Husyatin chassidic court, originates with the holy Baal Shem Tov. The Husyatin chassidus has its roots in Galicia and eventually came to Tel Aviv, during the turbulent years between the two World Wars.

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  • Maccabi'im Gravesite

    In honour of Chanukah, we will discuss a fascinating, ongoing investigation attempting to establish the place of burial of Mattisyahu Kohen Gadol and his family.

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In News

Unbelievable: Israeli Government's Attempted 'Selektzia' on Holocaust Survivors

A letter to Poland from the 50's reveals: Golda Meir requested that sick and disabled Jews not be allowed to immigrate to Israel. Litzman: 'This is inexcusable'

Avi Moshe 10/12/2009 15:08
Did the Israeli Government officially prevent sickly and disabled Jews from immigrating to Israel during the 50's?

A letter that was published exclusively in 'Haartez' reveals a terrible secret that was hidden from the eyes and ears of the public for over fifty years and casts a dark shadow on the Israeli leadership of the 50's.

The letter was written by former Prime Minister Golda Meir in 1958 to Israel's ambassador in Warsaw when Mrs. Meir served as Foreign Minister. In the letter, she asked the ambassador to prevent sick and disabled Jews from immigrating to Israel. The letter was recently discovered in the archives of the Israeli Foreign Ministry by a Jewish researcher from Poland.

In the secret letter, former Prime Minister Golda Meir wished to perform a 'selektzia' on the potential Jewish immigrants to Israel. "During a discussion at the Coordination Committee, a suggestion was proposed to select only strong and healthy immigrants, as we cannot accept sick and disabled ones anymore", Golda Meir wrote to Israel's ambassador in Warsaw, Natriel Katz. The letter was categorized as 'classified', and included a sentence written by the Prime Minister: "Please explain this to the Poles without causing damage to the immigration process".

The document, which was written in April 1958, a short time after Golda Meir was appointed Foreign Minister, was discovered by Professor Shimon Rudnizky, a Jew and Polish historian from the University of Warsaw who has been researching documents and files documenting Israeli-Polish relations during the years of 1945-1967. The letter was previously unknown to researchers of the mass immigration waves from Poland to Israel who were totally unaware of the intention to select only healthy and strong immigrants and shun Jews who were sick and handicapped after suffering immensely during the Holocaust.

Ambassador Katz passed away twenty years ago, and no evidence has been found indicating any intervention on his part in the issue of the 'selektzia'. The immigration wave from Poland during the years 1956-1958 was the second one after the Holocaust, during which approximately 40,000 Jews arrived in Israel.

Deputy Health Minister MK Rabbi Yaakov Litzman expressed his shock and dismay at the content of the letter and said that if it is true, then it is absolutely inexcusable and intolerable. "It is painful to believe that the State of Israel wished to get rid of the survivors who went through unimaginable suffering during one of the most tragic eras of our history", Litzman said.

Litzman also said that it is regrettable that the letter was discovered only now, so many years later.