* Being a Jew (was Re: Center for Jewish History) #hungary

Tom Venetianer <tom.vene@...>

Dear Linda and all,

I am replying this message in public not because I wish to raise a
controversy but because history must be seen within the correct perspective
to make justice to those millions who have been murdered among us - not
only by the Nazis but by the Spaniards, Pollack, Ukrainians, Russians, just
to mention a few.

What Linda writes is of course correct - in America, the archetype of
freedom, one MUST profess what Linda professes. But for one single reason -
because Americans are *allowed* to be free.

But put yourselves in the shoes of Jews living in Europe and in the Middle
Eastern countries where they have been persecuted for centuries if not
millenia. Is the same attitude valid? Clearly not.

Just to come back to Hungary, the Hungarians *never* allowed Jews to be
free and full fledged citizens. To support this statement, please read the
book written by my famous ancestor Venetianer Lajos (A Magyar Zsidosag
Tortenete - the history of Hungarian Jewry) who was *requested* by the
Budapest Jewish community to write a book in DEFENSE of the Hungarian Jews,
demonstrating how good and decent citizens they were for centuries. The
book is dated 1922 when religious integration and assimilations were the
buzzwords. 20 years later the Arrow Cross were slaughtering us.

For G-d's sake, how can somebody feel himself a Hungarian Jew? If one
thinks antisemitism has changed this person is very very wrong - it is as
extreme as it was before Horty took over, before Queen Elisabeth expelled
us >from Hungarian territories, before other Hungarian Kings persecuted us
and made the lives of Jews miserable to extremes.

I am sorry to bring this up, but one joke that circulated in my country
(Slovakia) after liberation was the following: an American lady got news
from her family who survived the Holocaust. That letter informed that her
aunt has been murdered by the Nazi bastards. In answer she wrote the
following (in broken Hungarian) "Nagyon sajnalatos hogy Siszi neni meg
gyilkolta a lagerba mert o nagyon szimpatikus mindenkihez volt" (== it is
to regret that aunt Siszi was murdered in the lager because she was always
such a nice person to everybody). The moral of this was of course that
American Jews were *unable* to grasp the magnitude of the barbarism that
was committed against our people.

In my opinion it is an offense to the memory of all those brethren who died
because of persecutions to declare myself a Slovakian Jew. It's a mocking
of their martyrdom. I am sorry, I may be even sinning, but I will NEVER

In Peace and Harmony I wish you all Happy Holidays
May the Lord have mercy of my soul

Linda Cohen wrote:

I am an American who is Jewish, and I am a Jew who is an American. I don't need any one to give me the right to be who I am. No one can take who I am >from me as what we are in our minds and hearts. So to further process my idea:If a person is Hungarian, he is. If he is Jewish, he is. Freedom means not having to choose between the two, nor put one first.

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