Heritage Florida Jewish News - Central Florida's Independent Jewish Voice

Articles written by Toby Axelrod

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 By Toby Axelrod    News    November 18, 2022

In Germany, Kristallnacht goes by a different name

(JTA) - This week, Jewish communities across the United States are commemorating the anniversary of Kristallnacht, the anti-Jewish riots that marked a brutal turning point in the Nazi campaign of...


Germany's public broadcaster mandates that all employees support Israel's right to exist

(JTA) — Germany’s public broadcaster, Deutsche Welle, has revised its code of conduct to require support for Israel’s right to exist, and employees who fail to do so may now be fired.  The move announced Sept. 1 preceded a court order last...


Germany apologizes to Munich Massacre victims and opens research commission into events surrounding the tragedy

(JTA) - At a ceremony held on the air base where 11 Israeli athletes and coaches were murdered during the 1972 Munich Olympics, German officials apologized for the "lack of protection" that led to the...

 By Toby Axelrod    News    August 26, 2022

German director takes stereotypes by the horns

BERLIN (JTA) — Nestled in the Bavarian alps, the city of Oberammergau has one major claim to fame: every 10 years, it hosts the world-famous Passion Play, which tells the New Testament story of Jesus’ death and resurrection.  It has been doing...

 By Toby Axelrod    News    August 5, 2022

Antisemitism scandal roils international art exhibition held in Germany

(JTA) - The director of a major international art exhibition has resigned after a work that included caricatures of Jews and Israelis ignited a reckoning over antisemitism. The scandal leaves...

 By Toby Axelrod    News    May 13, 2022

Israel's outgoing ambassador to Germany reflects on 4 of the country's most dramatic years since World War II

BERLIN (JTA) — Growing up in London had its ups and downs for Jeremy Issacharoff, Israel’s outgoing ambassador to Germany.  On one hand, as a schoolboy he was beaten up by skinheads and called a “dirty Jew.” On the other hand, he had long,...

 By Toby Axelrod    News    March 11, 2022

Mounting refugee crisis in Poland

(JTA) - It is nearly 10 p.m. at the emergency refugee shelter in Tomaszow Lubelski, Poland, near the Ukrainian border. It's bitter cold; snowflakes catch in the headlights of the huge tourist bus...

 By Toby Axelrod    News    February 11, 2022

'Never again,' for the Uyghurs: Jews around the world ramp up China protests as Beijing Olympics start

BERLIN (JTA) - On a recent Friday afternoon, with the Beijing Olympic Games only three weeks away, Mischa Ushakov and Padma Wangyal chained themselves to the entrance of the Allianz insurance giant's...

 By Toby Axelrod    News    February 4, 2022

German teens and young adults are interested in learning about the Holocaust - but they want new ways to do so

BERLIN (JTA) - A new survey of youth in Germany shows growing interest in Nazi-era history, but it also suggests that their attention span is shrinking.  According to the study conducted by the...

 By Toby Axelrod    News    December 31, 2021

Sections of lost Torah scroll reappear in a German town 83 years after Kristallnacht disappearance

BERLIN (JTA) - A German Protestant minister has handed over segments of a long lost Torah scroll to the city of Görlitz in southeast Germany, 83 years after his father, a town policeman, came into...

 By Toby Axelrod    News    May 21, 2021

German Jewish leaders call 15 percent rise in politically motivated antisemitic crimes 'absolutely alarming'

BERLIN (JTA) – The number of politically motivated crimes rose sharply in Germany last year, including a 15 percent rise in antisemitic offenses. The total documented by the country’s federal police force is the highest since contemporary...


Fauci receives award from Holocaust remembrance group and references Maimonides

(JTA) — Drawing a line between its mission of Holocaust remembrance and the ravages inflicted by the coronavirus pandemic, the March of the Living honored Dr. Anthony Fauci with an award for “moral courage in medicine” on the eve of Yom...

 By Toby Axelrod    News    January 22, 2021

Jewish leader apologizes for wrongly administered vaccines

BERLIN (JTA) — The head of Austria’s Jewish community has apologized for COVID-19 vaccine doses that were administered to community members, including himself, who were not meant to receive them. In a letter to the community released Monday,...


Jewish artwork hidden during Holocaust needs a home

(JTA) - Plans are under way to find a home for a huge trove of works by a nearly forgotten Jewish artist that was uncovered 78 years after her death in a Nazi concentration camp. The works of Czech...

 By Toby Axelrod    News    August 7, 2020

Holocaust survivors launch campaign to fight Holocaust denial on Facebook

BERLIN (JTA) — Joining a growing chorus of critical voices, Holocaust survivors have launched an international online campaign criticizing Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg that is aimed at countering Holocaust denial on his social media platform....

 By Toby Axelrod    News    July 10, 2020

In Germany, several churches have perverse anti-Semitic sculptures from the Middle Ages - can one man get them taken down?

BERLIN (JTA) - They date back to the late Middle Ages and irritate to this day: The Judensau (literally "Jewish sow") is a Christian folk image that depicts Jews sucking on the teats or peering into...

 By Toby Axelrod    News    July 10, 2020

110-year-old Jewish business mural reveals when building torn down

BERLIN (JTA) - In May, a demolition crew tore down a building in the western German city of Gelsenkirchen. As the walls fell, a 110-year-old advertising mural on the adjacent brick wall was exposed....

 By Toby Axelrod    Features    June 26, 2020

At a German train station, a unique memorial is dedicated to Jews deported to their death

BERLIN (JTA) - Nearly 80 years after the last train sent Jews to almost certain death from the main railway station in Wurzburg, a memorial to those who perished was dedicated in the German city. The...

 By Toby Axelrod    News    January 10, 2020

After death threat, pianist Igor Levit warns of rising hatred in Germany

(JTA)-Pianist Igor Levit says he has received death threats and is warning about an increase in hate crimes in Germany. The Russian-born musician, 32, whose family immigrated to Germany in 1995, said... Full story

 By Toby Axelrod    News    December 27, 2019

Makers of Krispy Kreme giving tens of millions to Holocaust survivors and education

(JTA)—A major German industry family will donate tens of millions of dollars to support Holocaust survivors and former forced laborers in the Nazi era. In addition to one-time donations to the Claims Conference and individual laborers, the Reimann... Full story


Artur Brauner, German-Jewish producer of 'Europa Europa' and other major films, dies at 100

(JTA)-German-Jewish film producer Artur Brauner, whose award-winning films include "The Garden of the Finzi-Continis" and "Europa Europa," has died at the age of 100. Brauner, who died Sunday in... Full story


40 years later, the 'Holocaust' miniseries returns to Germany

BERLIN (JTA)-For Sigmount Koenigsberg, the most searing scene in the U.S.-made "Holocaust" miniseries broadcast here 40 years ago was when a German child throws photos of a Jewish family into a... Full story

 By Toby Axelrod    News    May 11, 2018

Berlin volunteers hand out 6,000 kippahs at public parks in solidarity with Jews

BERLIN (JTA)-In an unusual sight, the people lazing about or strolling down the paths in several parks here on a sun-drenched Sunday were wearing gleaming white kippahs. Seventy volunteers handed out... Full story


A girl's pendant found at Sobibor reunites a Jewish family spread across the globe

BERLIN (JTA)-In late 1943, the Germans were desperate to cover all traces of their death camp in Sobibor, Poland. They demolished buildings, bulldozed the evidence, planted trees. More than 70 years... Full story


45 years after the Munich Massacre, murdered Israeli Olympians get a memorial

(JTA)-Forty-five years after the murderous PLO attack on Israeli Olympic team members at the 1972 games, a memorial dedicated to the victims opened today in Munich. The memorial-largely realized through the persistent efforts of family... Full story


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