Roundup of Jews was 100% French
In the article “Dr. Seuss and the Holocaust in France” (July 26), there is what I prefer to consider as a factual error. It states that “over the next two days, more than 13,000 Jews were rounded up in Paris by the Germans, with the active collaboration of the Vichy government headed by Nazi supporter Pierre Laval.” It is not true that the roundup was done by the Germans. Everything about it was 100 per cent French. The only part taken by the Germans was to ask for it. Vichy’s secretary of police, René Bousquet, ordered it, organized it and the French police of Paris carried it out. I am of French Jewish background and was not taken because my parents were wise enough to send me to the country several months before the roundup. As for them, they escaped arrest by a miracle, as the janitor of the building they lived in warned them.
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Remembers Italian cyclist
I am writing about the article “Cycling legend saved Italian Jews,” (July 12), regarding Italian cyclist Gino Bartali, whose story has been, until recently, unheralded. As a 12-year-old in Paris, I remember his name for his 1938 Tour de France victory. This story put a new face on this bicycle rider, and it allows me and your readers to grasp again the enormity of what happened in World War II.
Albert L. Stal
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Genocides should be treated equally
The article “Feds, province rescue human rights museum” (Aug. 2) is factually incorrect and misleading in claiming that the Ukrainian Canadian Civil Liberties Association or the undersigned have ever asked for the Holodomor to “be given equal space with the Holocaust in the museum.” Our position was, and remains, that all of the galleries in this taxpayer-funded national institution should be thematic, comparative and inclusive; obviously the Shoah must be included in the Canadian Museum for Human Rights (CMHR), most fittingly in a gallery dedicated to exploring the many incidents of genocide that have befouled human history, before, during and since the World War II. What we have objected to is the elevation of any community’s suffering (including our own) above all others in a publicly funded national museum. In taking this position we find ourselves in agreement with the majority of Canadians who oppose preferential treatment for any group at the CMHR.
Director of Research
Ukrainian Canadian Civil Liberties Association
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Questions reasons for choosing Jewish education
I admire Rabbi Jay Kelman’s financial acumen in devising a scheme to reduce the cost of private Hebrew day school tuition (“How my tuition plan would work,” July 12). Having seen some large families enrolled in these schools, however, I am not convinced that the costs constitute an effective method of birth control. But perhaps the same principle could be applied to financing the future costs of bar/bat mitzvahs, lavish weddings, summer camp, humanitarian trips to Africa, first cars, university and down payments on childrens’ homes and long-term care facilities. However, I do take offence with his implication, or my inference, that making Hebrew day schools more financially accessible might also reduce the “evils” (my word) of intermarriage. I am the father-in-law of two lovely children, neither of whom was born Jewish, one of whom teaches and enriches the lives of children at one of our Hebrew schools and the other who would not accept a Chicago salami even under duress. Surely this should not be one of the motivations for choosing a private Jewish education, in spite of what I agree are the unfair and exorbitant costs.
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I would like to clarify Rabbi Howard Morrison’s clarification (“Refugees’ health care, letters, Aug. 29). Although there might be some Orthodox communal rabbis who are members of the Toronto Board of Rabbis, nevertheless the TBR does not in any way represent the Orthodox rabbinate in Toronto. For many years, the Orthodox Torah view has been represented by the Toronto Vaad Harabonim, and any suggestion otherwise is a misrepresentation.
Rabbi Moshe Stern
Shaarei Tefillah Cong.
Past President, Vaad Harabonim of Toronto