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Would Rabbi Schneersohn Have Praised Hitler?

Rabbi Yosef Yitzchak Schneersohn / Wikipedia

Rabbi Schneersohn was saved in 1939 by the Nazis (father-in-law of Rabbi Menachem Schneersohn who was brought to America from Vichy France). This was politics Trump-style in Nazi Germany as a half Jew in association with the department of military intelligence (Abwehr) wished to make a deal with the United States and President Franklin D. Roosevelt was quickly brought into it by Justice Louis Brandeis and others.

Hitler hoped to keep the United States out of the war with Great Britain and France. This, of course, was doable at the time because of American neutrality and powerful politics of that time.

I ask the question would Rabbi Yosef Yitzchak Schneersohn have praised Hitler? I do not know enough about the subject to project a viewpoint with total certainty; however, the Jewish ambassador to the Dominican Republic just praised Rafael Trujillo, reaching out to his family, for saving hundreds of Jews in the Dominican Republic at a time when the same dictator massacred tens of thousands of Haitians.

In addition we can point to history. The funeral of Rabbi Jacob Joseph still reverberates today and the attack on his followers. I attended the funeral in Brentwood, Long Island of Milton Donato whose family founded the Sinagoga in Harlem and I was told by his family members how much Jews were respected in those early days. These were Christians.

Then we turn to Trump’s leading Christian advisors, including Robert Jeffries who was making anti-Semitic statements only several years ago.

Followers of Rabbi Schneersohn must keep this in mind as about seventy-four percent of Jews are expected to reject Trump’s politics now as the elections near. In other words my own feelings are that a vote for Schneersohn is not a vote for Trump and people who are border line fascists.

There are always other things that play an important role in voting, such as religious views, but I just cannot see the famous rabbi giving that kind of help to men and women who have contributed to more anti-Semitic incidents across America.

Rabbi Yosef was condemned to death by Communist Russia, but world opinion helped save him and he returned to his home in Riga, Latvia. He probably escaped death in Palestine in 1929 when Talmudic students were massacred by Arabs.

Rabbi Menachem was being escorted by police in Crown Heights in 1991 when one of the cars in the motorcade killed Cato Gavin, a 7 year old child of Guayanese immigrants, sparking a long riot. About 250 locals came out against the “Jews.” Rabbi Schneersohn soon developed better community relations which continued.
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Both battles were about being Jewish. The lesson of the tragedy in Brooklyn is that we feel the pain of others. Whether those others be Mexican, homosexual, or just others.

I am writing from Ft. Lauderdale where I have been told that the rabbi of the Chabad, in his outreach, has homosexuals at Friday night dinner. Florida has more hate groups than any other state and there is rhetoric of “violent” times coming. And yes there were Republican choices that were rejected in 2016, more moderate voices.

We The People demand something much better than the Trump Administration is and will give us. It is clear that he is not attacking Jews, but one of the chief lessons of our history is to come to the aid of others.

Let us all live together in peace.

Even as I was writing, I read that there is speculation that Trump is going to recognize Jerusalem as the capital of a Palestinian state.

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