The B'nai B'rith World Center in Jerusalem coordinated a delegation from B'nai B'rith Europe last week, to express solidarity with Israel.
The visit was covered by InfoPublico.com, the Israel Broadcasting Authority (IBA, 01:26:05 mark) and Telavivi.net:
The B'nai B'rith World Center in Jerusalem coordinated a delegation from B'nai B'rith Europe this week, to express solidarity with Israel.
The visit was covered by the Times of Israel in an article detailing daily updates on Operation Protective Edge:
A six-member group from B’nai B’rith Europe is visiting on a solidarity mission.
The group was briefed by government officials on the ongoing conflict with Hamas, learned first hand about the realities faced by Israelis in the most heavily shelled areas, and conveyed a message of unity with the people of Israel.
It visited Ashkelon, Sderot, areas in the Merhavim and Hof Ashkelon regional councils, and an Iron Dome battery.
Sunday marked B'nai B'rith World Center's 22nd annual Award for Journalism ceremony, with a trio of Israeli journalists noted for their work in covering the Israeli-Diaspora.
One of the three, David Horovitz, Times of Israel's founding editor, was awarded the Lifetime Achievement Award in recognition of his three decades of service to Israeli journalism.
The other two, Matan Hodorov and Judy Maltz, were given awards for excellence in Diaspora Reportage.
Media coverage of the event can be found below:
The prizes were awarded by the B’nai B’rith World Center in memory of Dr. Wolf Matsdorf, a journalist and social worker, and his wife, Hilda, who was a leading social worker.
Maltz was a former economics reporter for The Jerusalem Post; Horovitz, who started out as a reporter for the Post, later became the paper’s editor-in-chief, and before that was editor-in-chief of its sister publication, The Jerusalem Report.
Although it was claimed by Government Press Office director Nitzan Chen and several other people at the recent Jewish Media Summit that the Israeli media does not deal with the Jewish Diaspora unless there is a crisis or tragedy, this has proven to be untrue in the case of the annual BBWC competition – where the number of entries grows from year to year. This year, there were 33 applicants who submitted 82 news and feature stories.
Schneider paid tribute to the school’s staff for reopening the school just two weeks after the typhoon in a valiant effort to begin the return to normalcy, despite the difficult conditions at the school that is still in need of significant investment in order to repair all the damage caused by Yolanda.
He also recognized the role of the Philippines in serving as a refuge for Jews escaping the Holocaust and in voting in favor of the U.N. Partition Plan in 1947. Schneider referenced other B’nai B’rith-supported IsraAID aid activities that began just two days after Yolanda made landfall with a medical mission that treated over 5,000 patients in Tacloban, Ormoc, Kananga and Albuera municipalities and provided over two tons of medical supplies.
The citation will be presented at the B’nai B’rith World Center’s 22nd annual awards Recognizing Excellence in Diaspora Reportage that will take place at 7:30 p.m. at the Menachem Begin Heritage Center in Jerusalem.
Hirsh, B’nai Brith noted, has represented the State of Israel around the world for over 50 years through more than 1,500 of her songs “and many moving performances in which she brought great honor to the State of Israel.
Her songs have been published in a collection of six books and 13 CDs. Many of her songs are popular in Diaspora communities and serve as a bridge, a language and a source of shared identity between Israel and Jewish communities around the world, between the communities and within the communities themselves.”
Hirsh, the citation went on, “chooses the lyrics to her songs from the Bible, prayer and Israeli poets in addition to personal songs reflecting universal themes. Her songs have been translated to many languages including English, Spanish, Japanese, Greek, Turkish, and Korean, and are sung all over the world.”
On Sunday, he received the B’nai B’rith Europe Lifetime Award of Merit, presented to him by B’nai B’rith Europe president Ralph Hoffman, who came from Frankfurt for the occasion.
The B’nai B’rith award is given to outstanding individuals who have dedicated at least 40 years of service to the well-being of the Jewish People and the State of Israel.
Peres was presented with a gold medal and a certificate that noted: “You are the face of Israel and of the Jewish People and you bring together the highest Jewish values of ethics, morality, tolerance, culture and the national unity of the Jewish People. The B’nai B’rith fraternity is also committed to these principles.”
In responding, Peres said every Jew deserves a medal of merit “because to be a Jew is to be committed to the spirit of humanity. It is not simple and it never was simple to be a Jew,” he said.
“A Jew today is a person who ensures his grandchildren are Jewish. That is what B’nai B’rith does, and it does it very well.”
B'nai B'rith World Center recently bestowed its 2014 awards for excellence in Diaspora reportage, with the Times Of Israel's founding editor David Horovitz winning the “Lifetime Achievement Award.”
Since its establishment in 1992, the B’nai B’rith World Center Award for Journalism has recognized excellence in reportage on contemporary Diaspora Jewish communities and on the state of Israel-Diaspora relations today in the Israeli print and electronic media.
Read an excerpt of the Times Of Israel's own piece on Horovitz, commemorating his award:
The lifetime achievement award to Horovitz, in memory of Luis and Trudi Schydlowsky, recognized “his dedication to extended Diaspora reportage over a 30-year career.”
The B’nai B’rith World Center Award is widely acknowledged in the media industry as the most prestigious prize in its field in Israel. Its goal is to help shore up the relationship between Israel and the Diaspora by recognizing excellence in Diaspora-related reportage appearing in the Israeli print, broadcast and web-based media.
It was established in recognition of the important contribution the media can make toward strengthening the relationship between Israel and world Jewry, so essential for the resilience of both, by encouraging quality reportage on Diaspora communities and Israel-Diaspora relations.
On Yom Hashoah, hundreds gathered at the B'nai B'rith Martyrs' Forest “Scroll of Fire” Plaza in Jerusalem for a ceremony of remembrance. This year's focus was on rescue activities of Jonas Eckstein (1902-1971) who was an active member of the Jewish community and saved countless Jews from the atrocities of the Holocaust.
The gallery below is courtesy of B'nai B'rith World Center in Jerusalem:
B'nai B'rith International World Center in Jerusalem was featured on Shalom TV Daily News for the commemoration ceremony on Holocaust Martyrs' and Heroes' Remembrance Day/Yom Hashoah.
The event took place at the B'nai B'rith Martyrs' Forest “Scroll of Fire” Plaza, and memorializes the Holocaust rescue activities of Jonas Eckstein (1902-1971), who was an active member of the Jewish community.
The story begins at the 1:28 mark in the video:
The following post is an excerpt from the op-ed piece that appeared in The Times of Israel, written by Alan Schneider, Director of the B’nai B’rith World Center in Jerusalem.
Schneider discusses Yom Hashoah ceremony, commemorating the heroic efforts of Jonas Eckstein to save thousands of Jews from the Holocaust.
Schneider notes that while the Holocaust will remain one of the darkest hours of human history, it is time to focus on the stories of heroism that prevented further atrocities.
To read Schneider's full op-ed, click here:
Yona (Jonas) Eckstein (1902-1971) was an active member of the Jewish community in Bratislava and a successful wrestler in the “Hakoach” Jewish sport club there.
Through his sporting activities and vivacious personality Eckstein befriended city officials and police, and when the Jews of Bratislava were being rounded up for deportation in 1941, Eckstein was charged with providing food to Jews in the transit camps and was given the privilege of remaining in his own home.
But Eckstein did not take advantage of his relative freedom and good connections to escape to a safe heaven. Instead, he utilized them to facilitate rescue activities of fellow Jews that endangered himself and his family.
His diverse activity touched thousands of people over a period of two and half years, encompassing the clandestine delivery of food to hidden Jews along with information vital for their survival; hosting orphans from Poland and facilitating their conveyance to pre-state Israel via Hungary; hosting Jews who fled to Slovakia from Auschwitz; hosting and conveying Polish Jews to the then-relative safety of Hungary; and hiding Jews in bunkers – including one he dug under his own basement.
Eckstein was imprisoned and tortured by the Gestapo and pressured by Jewish leaders to hand over hidden Jews. Many of the operations undertaken by Jonas Eckstein were done in the framework of the Jewish community and the “Working Group” headed by Rabbi Chaim Michael Dov Weissmandl and Gisi Fleischmann, but most of his activity was undertaken at his own initiative.
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