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

By Gloria Yousha
Scene Around 

Scene Around


Aluf David (Mickey) Marcus

"Depressed" isn't a strong enough word...

With the increase in anti-Semitism in Europe and yes, even here in the United States, I am feeling extremely down and frankly scared. I keep remembering the words of Holocaust survivor ROMAN KENT at the recent Auschwitz tribute. He said "We do not want our past to be our children's future."

Even if my time on earth isn't much longer, what about my children and their children and their children's children? I repeat, "depressed isn't a strong enough word."

A little uplifting, I suppose...

I read this article about France, (who once lovingly welcomed Hitler) these days cracking down on hate. It was in the current World Jewish Congress (WJC) digest. I pass it along:

"In the wake of the deadly attacks in Paris, at least 54 people, including the anti-Semitic comedian DIEUDONNE M'BALA M'BALA, were detained by police in France for 'defending or glorifying terrorism.'

Many of the arrests stem from comments made through social media outlets such as Facebook and Twitter and are part of a broader government push for tougher anti-terrorism measures.

ROGER CUKIERMAN, president of the French Jewish umbrella body CRIF and vice president of the WJC, argued that messages endorsing the Paris shootings or inciting hatred should have been censored by the social media networks, particularly since this is how young people are being 'educated' today. 'How can we accept that Twitter is accepting such messages,' he said. 'They are collaborating with criminals. It should be subject to penal law.'"

How do you defeat depression?...

You go to the movies, of course. And my spouse and I did! So what did he choose for us to see? A comedy? Would you believe, "Woman In Gold"? Don't get me wrong... this is a fabulous movie, a true story and perfectly acted. In fact, it IS a must see for every Jew... but it only added to my depression. It takes us to Austria and the hatred against our people; the theft of art and other valuables from us and the struggle to get them back.

Tears rolled down my eyes.

When we returned home we watched some television to get into a less depressed mood but were drawn to Frontline's program about the Jewish- American military personnel who helped Israel in battle in 1947. Of course we all know about David Daniel (Mickey) Marcus, an American Army colonel who assisted Israel back then and who became Israel's first modern general (Aluf in Hebrew). He was killed by friendly fire when he was mistaken for an enemy infiltrator. But, I personally, had never heard the stories of other Jewish-American servicemen and women who were involved. So we watched the program and also the program immediately following, titled Frontline's "Memory of the Camps." (Need I say more?)

It showed the actual films of British, American and Russian troops entering the Nazi concentration camps, feeding starving people, giving them cool water to drink and hot water to bathe, overseeing SS personnel throwing emaciated dead human bodies into pits... thousands upon thousands of human beings... most of them Jews. (Talk about depression.) This film, titled "Memory of the Camps" can be purchased on Amazon.com.

Incidentally, today in 2015... April 24, 1945, is the exact day 70 years ago, when British troops entered Bergen Belson and witnessed the horror within.

Annual Dinner of Tribute...

This is a reminder that the Holocaust Memorial Resource and Education Center of Florida will hold its Annual Dinner of Tribute 2015 on Tuesday, April 28 at the Rosen Plaza Hotel, 9700 International Drive, beginning at 5:30 p.m. for cocktails and an auction and 7 p.m. for dinner and program.

Two wonderful, giving people, SUSAN and GORDON ARKIN, will be honored.

More excitement upcoming...

On Sunday, May 3, at 2 p.m. in the Ballroom, The Congregation Ohev Shalom (COS) Seniors will present the super-talented GEORGE GROSMAN

George was born in Prague but has spent the last four decades living and playing music on three continents. He has played the blues in Israel, pop and classical music in England, klezmer in Iceland and jazz in Canada.

After his studies at the Guildhall School in London, George and his young family settled in Toronto. George's wandering Jew spirit took over and relocated to Orlando to start new and exciting music projects. He is the founding member and main songwriter for Gypsy Bluez as well as guitarist and vocalist for his string quartet, Jazz Presso. (I would love to meet and speak with him as I am also a songwriter and member of ASCAP.)

George is also a sought after studio musician, producer and solo performer.

The cost is still $5, COS Senior members; $8, all others.

After the terrific performance, there will be refreshments and a raffle.

COS is located at 613 Concourse Parkway South, Maitland. For further directions and information, phone president BERNY RAFF, 407-767-6763.

Not politics...

Now that HILLARY CLINTON declared her bid for U.S. presidency, I just want to mention that I once met her and had a nice conversation with her. It was back when I was still singing with the Jimmy Dorsey Orchestra and we were performing at Wildwood Park for the Performing Arts in Little Rock, Arkansas. BILL CLINTON was just elected president and was in D.C. at the time. (Our stage was 8 feet off the ground. I kept backing up while singing, right into the drummer who poked me with his sticks each time. Oy vay!)

I hear laughing...

Could it be my spouse, Irv guffawing and chuckling in the other room? This hardly ever happens... not even a smile. (Don't let Irv see this column!)

His reaction was to watching "Silent Movie" on his computer so I can understand the merriment. Several Jewish comics are in that movie, including MEL BROOKS, Sid Caesar, Henny Youngman, Marty Feldman, Dom DeLuise (oops. Dom isn't Jewish.), and many others who were!

(No more depression for my spouse.)

A shout out...

The assistant manager at Sonny's Barbecue on University in Winter Park, SKIP DIEHL is the absolute best. A better, more efficient gentleman you will not easily find. I hope your boss sees this column, Skip. (I'll get you a copy.)

One for the road...

George Grossman

Okay, Irv is no longer depressed but I could use a good joke. How about:

Little Sam was out shopping with his mother, something he didn't like very much.

But when they passed a toy store, Sam came to life.

He saw a new toy in the window that he didn't have but wanted.

Sam begged, pleaded and nagged but to no avail. He got so rude that his mother firmly said, "I'm very sorry Sam, but we didn't come out to buy you a toy." 

Sam angrily replied, "I've never met a woman as mean as you." 

Holding his hand gently, she replied, "Sam, darling, one day you'll get married and then you will... you really will, I promise you."

(I repeat, don't let my spouse read this column!)


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