Re: Jewish Argentinians #latinamerica


Yvonne Stern
 

I endorse Alberto Chester´´statement on the 'Polacas" (as the jewish prostitutes were called ). 
The women mainly came from Poland,Lithuania, Ukraine,  
living in Shtetls in very poor conditions, 
plagued by waves of hunger and  anti-semitic terror.    
Zwi Magdal´s pimps  had little  difficulty  to recruit themoften promissing to marry them. Once crossing the Atlantic , the women were forced to work at  the establishments of the criminal organizantion, mainly in Rio de Janeiro, Buenos Aires and New York.  Women from Germany, Austria and Czech Republic didn´t take part of thesgroups
 
 Sexually exploited,  Polacas knew that, according to Jewish Law,  they were considered impure and sinful and thus  be   buried by the wall of the cemetery, at the side  of suicidals . 
This became a major concern to them  To prevent this misfortune and to guarantee their pensions, Polacas of Rio de Janeiro created  a Mutual Assistance Fund (Associação Beneficente Funerária e Religiosa Israelita,)
Thanks to this Fund, the Jewish prostitutes founded  their own synagogue and purchased land for their cemetery, which became the first Jewish cemetery in Rio de Janeiro.
Clarifying  Mrs, Mitchell´s doubt, nowadays Inhauma Cemetery  is open for use by the community at large, but the 700 graves  of those Jewish women and their relatives  are catalogued (by name) and  cared  by the local Chevra Kadisha.
I would like to ask Mrs. Mitchell what led her to make those statements about the Polacas. Instead of books like the 
one she cited  "Sex and Danger in the City of Buenos Aires", she should  read books by  recognized experts in Social Studies and History.
Finally, this is not a matter of national pride, but about showing respect for the memory of Jews.
Yvonne Stern
Rio de Janeiro  
 

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