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May 26th, 2014 - Iyar 26th, 5774

"The Heart of Civilized Europe Violated
in Brussels”
by Renzo Gattegna*

Once again hatred has hit at the heart of our civilization, showing its most grim and miserable face. Once again, innocent people have fallen under the blows of fanaticism and intolerance .
We mourn the victims of the attack in Brussels and at the same time we express our concern and dismay for this Europe, violated in its own soul by those who try to uproot democracy, human rights, and even hope from our lives, moved by a sick ideology.

Our response to this new violence must be in the cohesion of all those who identify themselves with the values of peace, unity and brotherhood. Those values that our enemies, enemies of that free and plural Europe built on the ashes of Auschwitz, are trying to put once again under attack. Hence we cannot limit ourselves to some general words of condemnation but we have to put our energies into an international campaign, led by the police of the different countries, to identify all the potentially harmful to prevent similar episodes in the future.

To do so, our attention must also be dedicated to stop all illegal actions of racist, xenophobic and anti-Semitic nature that keep happening in the name of a poorly interpreted freedom of expression. To identify as soon as possible the perpetrators of this horrendous crime will help to shed light on the real size of the threat that we are facing.

*Renzo Gattegna is the President of the Union of Italian Jewish Communities.
Italian Word of the Week:
by Daniela Gross

Italkìm is the plural of Italki, wich means Italian, and it is among the Hebrew words more used in the Italian Jewry because currently indicates the Italian Jewish community in Israel.

The bond between the Italian Jews and the Italkìm is close and full of affection. Only three hours of flight separates the two countries and almost every family has a relative, good friends or a son living there. So, the travels to Israel are frequent as the cultural exchanges and projects.

The origins of the Italian Jewish presence in the Land of Israel dates back to the expulsion from the Spanish Empire, in 1492. But Italians in Israel mostly grew during the last century, when their aliyah registered two significant waves after the 1938, when the fascist regime approved the racist laws, and after the 1967 Six Day War.

There were about 15,000 Italians citizens in Israel two years ago for an enlarged total (including non citizens and members of the respective families) of 25-30,000 people and the immigration from Italy is still increasing.
Most part of the Italkìm resides in Tel Aviv metropolitan area, but the major representative center of the community is in Jerusalem. Here, in Rehov Hillel, there is the Italian synagogue, a real jewel, with a magnificent decorated Ark, that originally was the synagogue of Conegliano Veneto, a village located between Padua and Venice.

After the Second War steps were taken by Italian Jews in Israel to transfer to Jerusalem the Conegliano synagogue, where the last service was held in 1918 by the soldiers of the Austro-Hungarian army. In 1951 the synagogue interior was reconstructed, opened its doors to serve the Italian Community and became later an integral part of the Museum Umberto Nahon, which permanent collection displays a selection of precious and historical ritual objects made in Italy.
Israel and the Holy See,
a Century of History

By Zion Evrony*

About twenty years ago Israel and the Holy See signed the Fundamental Agreement, establishing full diplomatic relations and exchange of ambassadors. The agreement was an historic milestone not only in relations between Israel and the Holy See, but also between the Catholic Church and the Jewish People.

A century earlier, in 1904, the founder of Zionism Theodor Herzl met Pope Pius X and asked his support for the establishment of a Jewish State. The Pope rejected the idea categorically and the Holy See objected to the Partition Resolution of 1947 on the basis of theological reasons and practical interests.
From 1948 to 1967, and especially during its first years of statehood, Israel’s approach toward the Catholic Church was dictated not only by considerations of realpolitik, but also by the burden of history – not always simple.

*Zion Evrony is the Israeli Ambassador to the Holy See
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Limmud Italia Is on Its Way
By Rossella Tercatin

Talmud and social network, Zionism and Jewish ethics, music and theatre. Limmud Conference, the organization focused on Jewish education in all its forms, is about to deliver its first event in Italy.
The first Limmud Italia Day is set to take place in Florence on Sunday and Monday, June 1st and 2nd, attracting people from all over the country willing to enjoy Limmud special atmosphere and great variety of speakers and topics.
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A Butterfly for Italian Kids
By Ada Treves

Parpar (butterfly, in Hebrew) is the novelty by the historic publishing house Giuntina, based in Florence, that specializes in books about Jewish history and culture. The new series of books for children, an idea by Shulim Vogelmann, was born in late November, when the first book arrived in the bookshops. The first two volumes of the series are translations of books by Kar-Ben, the American publishing house, which has its headquarters in Minneapolis and is part of Lerner Publishing Group.

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The Liberation of Rome Displayed in Jerusalem
By Simone Somekh

A temporary exhibition entitled “Roma Capta: The Contribution of the Jewish Soldiers in the Allied Armies during the Italian Campaign (1943-1945)” is being displayed at the Museum of Italian Art U. Nahon in Jerusalem, in the 70th anniversary of the Liberation of Rome from the Nazis. The exhibition seeks to tell the history of the Jews who enlisted in the Allied Armies during WWII, especially of the Jewish Brigade, a military group formed in 1944 with the aim of fighting the Germans that were occupying Italy.

*Simone Somekh is a student at Bar-Ilan University, Israel, and writes as a freelancer for the Jewish Italian press.

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Ne pas renoncer aux valeurs

À l’attention de Maurice Sosnowski, Président du Comité de Coordination des Organisations Juives de Belgique (CCOJB)

Cher Monsieur,
c'est avec horreur et désarroi que nous avons appris, tard hier soir après la fin de Shabbat, du terrible attaque qui a frappé la communauté juive belge dans le lieu symbolique du Musée Juif de Bruxelles.
Si les contours de l'attentat restent encore à définir, ainsi que l'identité de ses responsables, la matrice odieusement antisémite est d'ores et déjà bien claire. Après le sanglant meurtre de Toulouse, c'est à nouveau les juifs qui sont victimes d'une attaque violente et sans explications.
Ne nous trompons pas: c'est le peuple juif tout entier qui est sous attaque et qui doit relever le défi. C'est pourquoi je tiens à vous faire joindre, en tant que représentant de l'UGEI - l'Union des Jeunes Juifs d'Italie, notre plus grande proximité dans ce moment de doleur et choc. Les ennemis du peuple d'Israël, soyez-en surs, n'arriveront jamais à nous faire renoncer à nos valeurs, nos principes et notre identité.
Avec le cœur entièrement tourné vers vous, Monsieur, je vous prie d'agréer nos sincères condoléances - soit le souvenir des victimes de bénédiction - et notre soutien total.

Simone Disegni,
Président de l'Union des Jeunes Juifs d'Italie (UGEI)

Lire la suite

My Intrepid Voyage
to Jordan, for Peace

By Edna Angelica Calò Livne*

When I received the invitation from Carolyn Handschin, a manager at the UN Organization at Geneva, my first thought was to look for another participant from Israel with whom to cross the border at Hussein Bridge, close to Beit Shean, in order to reach Amman in Jordan, where the eighteenth international summit “Women United for Achieving of Peace in the Middle East and the whole World” was to be held.

After realizing that I was to be the sole Israeli representative, I started to receive the first alarming messages from the Japanese who were sponsoring the event, asking me kindly to present myself with my Italian passport and that, they would even be willing to provide me with an air ticket from Tel Aviv to Rome so that I could reach Amman from Italy.
Sometimes I enjoy listening to my two voices, the heart or the brain one, discussing, inquiring, telling hard to believe stories and alert each other while I know from the start which one of the two will “catch the wind” and prevail. This time as usual, the heart won:  so, off I went - on my own - one taxi ride to the border and another one to Amman.

*Edna Angelica Calò Livne is one the founders of Beresheet Lashalom Foundation. The Foundation is dedicated to the creation and perseverance of dialogue between children across diverse groups.

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moked è il portale dell'ebraismo italiano

This newsletter is published under difficult conditions. The editors of this newsletter are Italian journalists whose native language is Italian. They are willing to offer their energy and their skills to give international readers the opportunity of learning more about the Italian Jewish world, its values, its culture and its traditions.
In spite of all our efforts to avoid this, readers may find an occasional language mistake. We count on your understanding and on your help and advice to correct these mistakes and improve our publication.

Pagine Ebraiche International Edition is published by the Union of Italian Jewish Communities (UCEI). UCEI publications encourage an understanding of the Jewish world and the debate within it. The articles and opinions published by Pagine Ebraiche International Edition, unless expressly stated otherwise, cannot be interpreted as the official position of UCEI, but only as the self-expression of the people who sign them, offering their comments to UCEI publications. Readers who are interested in making their own contribution should email us at desk@ucei.it 
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© UCEI - All rights reserved - The articles may only be reproduced after obtaining the written permission of the editor-in-chief. Pagine Ebraiche - Reg Rome Court 199/2009 – Editor in Chief: Guido Vitale - Managing Editor: Daniela Gross.
Special thanks to: Francesco Moises Bassano, Susanna Barki, Monica Bizzio, Benedetta Guetta, Daniel Leisawitz, Gadi Luzzatto Voghera, Yaakov Mascetti, Francesca Matalon,
Giovanni Montenero, Elèna Mortara, Shirley Piperno, Giandomenico Pozzi, Daniel Reichel, Adam Smulevich, Simone Somekh, Rossella Tercatin, Ada Treves.

Questo notiziario è realizzato in condizioni di particolare difficoltà. I redattori di questo notiziario sono giornalisti italiani di madrelingua italiana. Mettono a disposizione le loro energie e le loro competenze per raccontare in lingua inglese l'ebraismo italiano, i suoi valori, la sua cultura e i suoi valori. Nonostante il nostro impegno il lettore potrebbe trovare errori e imperfezioni nell'utilizzo del linguaggio che faremo del nostro meglio per evitare. Contiamo sulla vostra comprensione e soprattutto sul vostro aiuto e sul vostro consiglio per correggere gli errori e migliorare.

Pagine Ebraiche International Edition è una pubblicazione edita dall'Unione delle Comunità Ebraiche Italiane. L'UCEI sviluppa mezzi di comunicazione che incoraggiano la conoscenza e il confronto delle realtà ebraiche. Gli articoli e i commenti pubblicati, a meno che non sia espressamente indicato il contrario, non possono essere intesi come una presa di posizione ufficiale, ma solo come la autonoma espressione delle persone che li firmano e che si sono rese gratuitamente disponibili. Gli utenti che fossero interessati a offrire un proprio contributo possono rivolgersi all'indirizzo  desk@ucei.it

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© UCEI - Tutti i diritti riservati - I testi possono essere riprodotti solo dopo aver ottenuto l'autorizzazione scritta della Direzione. Pagine Ebraiche International Edition - notiziario dell'ebraismo italiano - Reg. Tribunale di Roma 199/2009 - direttore responsabile: Guido Vitale -
Coordinamento: Daniela Gross.
Realizzato con il contributo di:
Francesco Moises Bassano, Susanna Barki, Monica Bizzio, Benedetta Guetta, Daniel Leisawitz, Gadi Luzzatto Voghera, Yaakov Mascetti, Francesca Matalon, Giovanni Montenero, Elèna Mortara, Shirley Piperno, Giandomenico Pozzi, Daniel Reichel, Adam Smulevich, Simone Somekh, Rossella Tercatin, Ada Treves.