1929-2009 Of the Jewish Orphanings from Family and Country "Of the Jewish Orphanings from Family and Country"
by Evelyn Hayes
Freeman Center For Strategic Studies
August 6, 2009
Today I met an orphan of the 1929 massacre of Jews in Jerusalem because of a blood libel. Shmuel Tsefania survived the massacre under his dead mother's body. He survived the Friday mutilations and massacre in the Jewish neighborhood of Jerusalem called Nissan Bak, across from Meah Shearim, near the Damascus gate. When the Jews came to bury their dead on Friday, the bodies were un-identifiable. The burial was postponed until Saturday evening. The sound of a baby's cry came from below the dead. That baby is now 81. His tale is the tale of Jewish rights and reality that needs rectification for the dead and for the living. We heard his story and said kaddish in front of the mass grave at the Mount of Olives Cemetery.
From a loving established family, left was a Jewish orphan. Not only was he orphaned, but the neighborhood of Batei Nissan lost most of its Jews in 1929 and all of its Jews by the Jordanian invasion and occupation in 1948. The neighborhood was established by a printer from Tsefat. He also put up a shul, the tallest in the Old City which housed 58 shuls which the Jordanians destroyed. It was called Batei Eshel Avraham. The parking lot outside this neighborhood where we parked today was all Jewish houses that were homes to 200 families. Jews were killed. An orphan survived. The neighborhood was almost Judenrid because of the pogroms that killed about 133 Jews. The dead of Nissan Bak are buried in a mass grave in the Mount of Olives Cemetery. We visited the dead again 80 years later.
They rest above the valley looking at the walls of ancient Jerusalem and the Jewish Temple Mount. May their rest be more tranquil as there are Jews again living in their neighborhood orphaned of Jews, displaced from their property and kept from reclamation because so many are ignorant of history and fail to claim what was taken illegally by savagery. As the world again screams divide Jerusalem, are they screaming for more Jewish orphans and more of Israel to be orphaned from its Jews? As the world screams that Jews are settling in East Jerusalem, do they fail to recognize this is Jewish property or are they part of a new blood libel that seeks to kill more Jews and take their property for their own.
In 1929, on a Friday, Haj al Husseini, of the clan warring with the Nashashibis incited a blood libel that led to mass murder and fleeing of the Jewish survivors from authentic established Jewish neighborhoods. He was installed by British Mandate manager Jewish Sir Herbert Samuels as mufti, replacing the Nashashibis, making a terrorist a statesman and getting terrorism and a partnership with Hitler for genocide of the Jews. Making this terrorist a statesman made an infant orphan survivor in Jerusalem and another in Hebron. It also orphaned Jewish owned land from its Jewish people
It is eighty years later. Who remembers Muswara? About 100 Israelis came to remember. They were the orphan, the survivors, those who were part of the country, tour guides and students, those who remembered and were learning of that which must not be orphaned from Jewish memory. Some experienced the massacres.
Some fought the British who looked aside and even sided with those attacking what they were assigned guardian to protect, others felt it their duty to study and tell the story of the Jews in Eastern Jerusalem on the street named Ha Na'viim Street , the street of The Prophets, which continues across the highway from Meah Shearim to the Damascus Gate, an old Jewish neighborhood. We sat in the backyard garden under plum trees of Jewish owned and re-inhabited Street of the Prophets, HaNavaaim 18 and recalled the massacres of 1929 in Jerusalem and Hebron.
The Arabs, incited by Husseini on the Temple Mount, first killed the Jews in Jerusalem and then went on to Hebron, announcing in “turnspeak” that Jews had killed the Arabs, doubling the incitement and the crime. Not only did a blood libel in Jerusalem mutilate and murder; the turnspeak libel caused the death of 67 Jews in Hebron, the injury of so many others and the orphaning of Jewish neighborhoods from the Jewish mandate for the Jewish people in the former Ottoman Empire, world recognized as a Jewish entity by the Bible, the Balfour Mandate and the League of Nations. Britain, custodian of that mandate failed as guardian to protect the people and even denied access to the 6,000,000 supporting genocide by Haj al Hussein and Hitler who was attacking Britain itself.
It is 80 years since, and this weekend the Yeshiva of Hebron will host its survivors. It will remember Shmuel Rosenholtz, a student from Yeshiva Hevron who the British police did nothing to protect. The Arabs even destroyed the Hadassah Hospital founded in 1891 which treated Jews and Arabs equally and also slaughtered the pharmacist who treated them. Although the British did not allow photos of the brutality and savagery worse than even chronicled in Sodom and Gemorrah, pictures can be seen in Beit Hadassah which houses a Museum in Memory of the Slaughtered, a reminder that there was a thriving ancient Jewish community in Hebron. Dr. Judith Resnick, the American astronaut had a father and grandfather learning in Hebron at the time. The Schneersons and Slonims were popular families in Hebron for centures. Nachum Segal's father studied in Hebron. A Baby Shlomo Slonim survived, saved by his mother's dead body. Such miracles in the midst of madness left a baby survivor on bus #2 leaving the Kotel in the Olso Peace Process of today which seeks to orphan Jewish memory, neighborhoods with roots and realities of the Bible , all times as well as the pre-mandate and the Mandate period from Israel proper. This attempted orphaning of Jews from history and place has the desire to genocide all Jews again. There were over 450 Jews in Hebron at the time. According to a Montefiore diary, there were 489 Jews in Hebron in 1865 and 4 yeshivas. Considering the failure of numbers to multiply, there was not natural growth.
The world today is again ranting against natural growth and settlement of Jews. Although there are valid claims to the property of survivors, the Israeli government to please a world ignorant to the facts and favoring the facts of Jew deniers is enforcing Jewish orphaning from its homes, reinforcing the British land laws which ceased when Sir Moses Montefiore purchased Ramsgate in southern England in 1831. Strange that these land laws against the Jews which have been eliminated worldwide are activated against the Jews by the Jewish government in Israel. Perhaps it is because so many Jews came from the lands where pogroms raged and came to a land where pogroms had ravaged and orphaned.
With voices connected and united, informed and informing, let there be an end to Jewish orphaning, killing Jewish people and their rights to the land in their only eternal immemorial country, the nation promised this land, exiled , always remaining, and now returned, always identifying and remembering. Let us remember and reclaim what belongs to those slaughtered and the Jewish nation, their inheritors. Let there not be denial, an orphaning from truth. Let there be affirmation and recapture of all the losses and let there be multiplications into what should have been and needs to be re-actualized.