Categories
Television

Wartime Girls (3)

Warsaw 1942. The third season of Wartime Girls, an atmospheric and suspenseful Polish television series that will be available on the ChaiFlicks streaming platform starting on January 12, takes place in that fateful year. It unfolds in Polish, German and English and revolves around three young Polish women from different socio-economic and religious backgrounds. Ewa […]

Categories
Television

Madoff: The Monster of Wall Street

Bernard (Bernie) Madoff was the ultimate fraudster, a revered Wall Street trader and investment advisor who bilked his clients to the tune of $64 billion.¬†Madoff’s epic Ponzi scheme, which went bust during the great financial crisis of 2008, is the subject of Joe Berlinger’s fascinating four-part Netflix series, Madoff: The Monster of Wall Street. Madoff’s […]

Categories
Film

One Step To Freedom

Paul Gruninger was the Oskar Schindler of Switzerland. Instrumental in saving the lives of 3,60o Austrian Jews from 1938 to 1939, he was the police commander of the St. Gallen district, near Austria and Germany. Alain Gsponer’s absorbing movie, The Gruninger File: One Step To Freedom, is based on real events.¬†Now available on the ChaiFlicks […]

Categories
Books

An American Shtetl

Kiryas Joel, a New York town in the Catskill Mountains 80 kilometres northwest of New York City, is a quintessential European-style shtetl designed to evoke a traditional East European past. KJ, as it is often called, is inhabited mostly by ultra-Orthodox Jews from the Satmar sect, which was founded by Rabbi Joel Teitelbaum (1887-1979) in […]

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Books

The Yiddish Historians And The Holocaust

The first historians to conduct research on the Holocaust in Poland were its Jewish survivors. “They pioneered the study of the Holocaust from the perspective of the Jewish experience,” writes Mark L. Smith in The Yiddish Historians And The Struggle For A Jewish History Of The Holocaust, published by Wayne State University Press. As he […]

Categories
Film

Tarzan Triumphs

Toward the end of Tarzan Triumphs, the seventh of twelve Tarzan movies starring Johnny Weissmuller as the fictitious ape man, he exclaims, “Nazis bring trouble.” What an understatement! Tarzan should have reached this conclusion much sooner in this wartime film, but what do you expect from a primitive man cut off from the world and […]

Categories
Middle East

Israel’s Wait-And-See Government

Israel’s new government, led by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu yet again, was sworn in on December 29, nearly two months after he and his allies won a parliamentary majority in the November 1 general election, the fifth since 2019. By any yardstick, this is the most right-wing, religiously conservative government in Israel’s history. Critics, lambasting […]

Categories
Commentary

Michael Marrus — A Distinguished Historian Of The Holocaust

Among the distinguished historians of the Holocaust, Michael Marrus was the sole Canadian in that exalted group. A University of Toronto professor for close to 50 years, he was the author of eight books, at least two of which are standards in the field, and a panoply of monographs. It would be fair to say […]

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Books

Jews And Their Roman Rivals: Pagan Rome’s Challenge To Israel

Jews in ancient Israel lived under a succession of foreign imperial invaders ranging from the Egyptians and the Assyrians to the Babylonians and the Persians. But as Katell Berthelot argues in Jews And Their Roman Rivals: Pagan Rome’s Challenge To Israel (Princeton University Press), the Roman Empire posed “a unique ideological challenge for Jews ” […]

Categories
Books

The Doctors Of The Warsaw Ghetto

It goes without saying that the Nazis had no interest whatsoever in the well-being and health of the captive Jewish inhabitants of the Warsaw ghetto. But because they feared that diseases and epidemics might spread beyond it and endanger German personnel and afflict the general Polish population, they provided a bare modicum of assistance to […]