Dateline, Istanbul: Dr. Jacob Griffel's Lone Odyssey Through a Sea of Indifference

Dateline, Istanbul: Dr. Jacob Griffel's Lone Odyssey Through a Sea of Indifference by Joseph Friedenson

ISBN10: 089906146X
ISBN13: 978-0899061467
Author: Joseph Friedenson
Title: Dateline, Istanbul: Dr. Jacob Griffel's Lone Odyssey Through a Sea of Indifference
Publisher: Mesorah Publications Ltd.; 1st edition (January 20, 1993)
Language: English
Size ePub: 1805 kb
Size PDF: 1457 kb
Rating: 5.0/5
Votes: 265
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Dateline, Istanbul: Dr. Jacob Griffel's Lone Odyssey Through a Sea of Indifference by Joseph Friedenson



In early January 1944, the Vaad officially decided that henceforth it would attempt to rescue all Jews regardless of religiosity and/or affiliation. This decision was a product of two major developments – the dissolution of the Joint Emergency Council on European Jewish Affairs and the creation by the Vaad of practical means to transfer funds to rescue activists, headed by Rabbi Michael Dov *Weissmandl , in German-occupied Europe. The former had been the only framework which included representatives of all the major Jewish organizations and could have coordinated unified political action to promote practical rescue initiatives. The creation of the latter meant that for the first time ever, the Vaad could actively support rescue activities inside German-occupied Europe. From this point on, the Vaad channeled most of its resources to assist the Jews living under German rule, initiating several rescue projects primarily through its Swiss branch (the HIJEFS relief agency headed by Recha and Isaac Sternbuch), but also via its representatives in Turkey (Jacob Griffel), Tangiers (Renee Reichman), and Sweden (Wilhelm Wolbe). The culmination of these efforts was the release to Switzerland on the night of February 6–7, 1945, of a train with 1,210 inmates from the Theresienstadt ghetto/concentration camp, a product of negotiations conducted by Swiss politician Jean-Marie Musy on the Vaad's behalf with top Nazi leaders. During the same period, the Vaad continued to send considerable sums of money to the refugee scholars in Shanghai and Central Asia, which allowed these Torah scholars, who simultaneously received aid from other Jewish organizations, to continue their studies and maintain their life-style.

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