Tag Archive for politics

Christian missions proselytized Jews in ‘the Ward’

From the Canadian Jewish News, April 2015 Having recently marked its 25th anniversary, the organization Jews for Judaism continues to counter the activities of missionary groups in Toronto that deceptively target Jews for conversion. However, Christian missions to the Jews are certainly nothing new in this city. In the era before the First World War, a…

Review: Two Days in June, by Andrew Cohen

More than half a century after the presidency of John F. Kennedy ended in a tragic hail of bullets, Ottawa historian and university professor Andrew Cohen has mined some powerful but previously neglected material on JFK and written a book that could change the shape of his political legacy and legend in substantial ways. In…

“HE WAS THE CZAR’S GUEST”

Herman Kempinski was evidently a first cousin once removed to my great-great-grandfather, Rafael Glicenstein, and both came from the town of Konin, Poland. Herman, born about 1854, was one of the many thousands of Russian-Polish Jews to emigrate to the United States in the late 1800s: he left Konin at age 17 in 1872. He…

Review of Fields of Exile, by Nora Gold

Judith, a thirtyish Canadian who has been in Israel for ten years, returns to Toronto because her father is dying, and promises to stay long enough to earn a degree in social work. Enrolled in a fictitious college outside of Toronto, she becomes immersed in the inescapable political culture of modern academia — a simmering…

Review of The 40s: The Story of A Decade (New Yorker)

Monuments Men, a new movie directed by George Clooney and starring Clooney and an impressive roster of A-list actors, tells the story of the special Allied unit tasked with rescuing artistic treasures looted by the Nazis from European museums and galleries during World War Two. The film is based loosely on Robert Edsel’s 2009 book…

Why Canada should admit Jewish refugees from Europe (1939)

Economics of Refugees : Canada Could Strike a Great Blow for Democracy From Saturday Night, March 1939 By Gwethalyn Graham ◊ Gwethalyn Graham (1913 – 1965) was a Toronto-born writer, whose 1944 novel Earth and High Heaven was the first Canadian book to reach number one on the New York Times best-seller list. Graham won the…

Review: The Rise of Abraham Cahan, by Seth Lipsky

From the Canadian Jewish News, January 2014 Ninety years ago, New York newspaper editor Abraham Cahan was at the epicentre of international Jewish affairs — not a newsmaker himself but an opinion-maker, someone who had an extraordinary and powerful influence on the Jewish masses in New York, around the Diaspora and in pre-state Israel. As…

Editorial: Ganging Up on Israel (Tely, 1969)

From The Toronto Telegram, Tuesday December 23, 1969 ◊ Note: this editorial from 45 years ago is notable for several reasons. First, it reminds us that the perennial Western impulse towards “even-handedness” (and being an “honest broker”) is as faulty as the impulse of a parent to treat two sons identically, though one be well-behaved and…

Canadian Parliament hears of Polish atrocities (1919)

S.W. Jacobs, K.C., M.P., Draws the Attention of the Members of Parliament to the Fact That Jews Have Been Murdered in Poland Even After the Treaty With Poland Had Been Signed From the Canadian Jewish Chronicle, September 19, 1919 Ottawa, Sept. 12 — Two resolutions calling for approval of compacts entered into by certain of…

Joe Salsberg: A Life of Commitment, by Gerald Tulchinsky

BOOK REVIEW: Joe Salsberg: A Life of Commitment, by Gerald Tulchinsky (University of Toronto Press, June 2013) It was said that it would take Joe Salsberg three to five hours to stroll along Spadina Avenue from College to Queen because he couldn’t venture more than a few steps without meeting someone and having a conversation. The…