10 April 2020

Published April 8, 2020 by rochellewisoff

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The next photo is the PROMPT. Remember, all photos are property of the photographer, donated for use in Friday Fictioneers only. They shouldn’t be used for any other purpose without express permission. It is proper etiquette to give the contributor credit.

PHOTO PROMPT © Jeff Arnold

CLICK ME! PLEASE!

Thanks to my husband Jan who found an article about the following event. As soon as he shared the article I knew what my story would be. Just in time for Passover. Matzo and sweet wine for everyone. 

Genre: Historical Fiction

Word Count: 100

WHY IS THIS NIGHT DIFFERENT FROM ALL OTHER NIGHTS?

PFC Nachman Levy recited the four questions for the hastily-organized Passover seder. At nineteen, he was the youngest in the “Rainbow Division” so the task fell to him.

“We’ve taken Dahn from the Third Reich.” Wearing his tallis over his fatigues and a twinkle in his eye, infantry rabbi Captain Bohnen led the ceremony reading from the hagaddah. “This is the first Jewish publication in Germany in seven years.” He brandished a crumpled ink-stained Nazi flag. “We put this to good use—cleaning the printing press.”

1,500 Jewish-American soldiers cheered.

Nachman’s pulse raced. He raised his cup and shouted. “L’chaim!”

The Haggadah begins with a message from Major General Collins: “My Jewish Soldiers– The celebration of Passover should have unusual significance for you at this time, for like your ancestors of old you too are now engaged in a battle against a modern Pharaoh. This Pharaoh has sought, not only to enslave your people, but to make slaves of the whole world.” 

General Collins also told attendees, “I am sure this Passover will live in your memories forever. You celebrate it in Germany, the land in which Hitler said no Passover would be celebrated for at least a thousand years.”

Rainbow Division Insignia

103 comments on “10 April 2020

    • Dear Mike,

      My husband found the account in one of his veteran’s magazines. I’d never heard this story before. Thank you re the mask. Gotta find fun wherever I can. 😉

      Shalom and good health,

      Rochelle

      Like

  • Must have been some huge pride among those men to have proved Hitler so very wrong. To have come together as a community to celebrate a festival that their own grandparents, great-grandparents, generations of family had celebrated. A continuity that even the horrors of the Third Reich couldn’t destroy. Beautifully done, as always Rochelle. And I wish you a joyful Passover, hoping you can share it with as many of your family as possible. Be well

    Liked by 1 person

    • Dear Lynn,

      I can;t imagine what emotions well up in those soldiers’ hearts. There was a footnote to the article that said days or weeks later they were to see the horrors when they liberated the camps. Surely this celebration helped bolster their spirits. Thank you for your glorious comments and holiday wishes.

      Shalom and stay safe,

      Rochelle

      Like

  • Dear Rochelle,

    Perfectly timed post, penned perfectly with the panache we’ve come to ‘preciate from you 😉 Sorry… I’m horrible at these things.
    Wonderful share of history, as per. I love how you weave your history.

    Shalom and Happy Passover!

    Dale

    Liked by 1 person

    • Dear Susan,

      We have such a variety of folks and belief systems so it doesn’t surprise me at all when someone doesn’t get all the references. At the Passover seder, the youngest child asks the leader, the traditional four question. The first one being, “Why is this night different from all other nights?” Yeah..I loved it when I read what they did with the flag. Had to write it. 😉 Thank you.

      Shalom and stay well,

      Rochelle

      Like

  • Thank you, Rochelle, for this very timely reminder of unusual Pesach nights and the way some are very different than others … and yet, still hold the message of hope and possible freedom from oppression and plague. …
    Loved the צפרדע and it’s relevance to both Mr. Linky AND the עשרת המכות …
    Love to you and may it be the best possible Passover it can, and may the plague, once more, pass us all over.

    Na’ama

    https://naamayehuda.com/2020/04/08/the-spectrum/

    Liked by 2 people

  • Awesome. I love the notion that they celebrated passover after Hitler claimed it wouldn’t be celebrated in Germany for 1,000 years! And even more, they finally found a good use for a nazi flag. Lovely story, and Happy Passover, Rochelle!

    Liked by 1 person

  • You show us a celebration going back thousands of years. That’s remarkable enough in itself, but the fact that it can speak as eloquently about modern deliverance is miraculous. Well written, Rochelle. Shalom, and have a peaceful Passover.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Dear Brenda,

      I suppose a husband comes in handy every now and then. 😉 The young private is the only fiction in the story. It made me smile to know this really happened. Thank you. 😀

      Shalom and be well,

      Rochelle

      Like

  • Hi, Rochelle. I try to follow your encouragement to contributors to Friday Fictioneers, as I do for other contributor sites, by reading every post (including those who post what they happen to be writing at the moment, irrespective of the prompt, and those who can’t think past the C-word for inspiration) and adding a Like to the pieces I do in fact like and/or making a comment. Sadly, I seem to be the exception to the rule. I respect other writers for having the courage to post their words and it would be helpful if we could all do the same.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hi Doug,

      One of the things that attracted me to Friday Fictioneers (I’m not the creator) in the first place was the reciprocation. Alas not everyone is good about commenting or even replying to their comments. When I first took the lead, I read and commented on every single story. When I realized there were some who never commented on my stories or replies to comments, I returned the favor. I agree about the C word and refuse to write about it myself.
      I hope you enjoyed my story while you were here. 😉
      Shalom and stay well,

      Rochelle

      Liked by 1 person

  • You seem to find heroes even in the midst of the worst malfeasance! What’s that famous Eleanor Roosevelt quote? “No one can make you feel inferior without your consent”.

    I like the defiance of this group despite their most treacherous circumstances. May we learn from their courage and loyalty to what is good, even during a time and in a place in which bravery and goodness were not encouraged.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Dear Andrea,

      Sometimes it seems these heroes find me. How can I refuse them? 😉 I love the Eleanor Roosevelt quote. It’s so true. Thank you for taking the time to read and leave such a lovely comment. 😀

      Shalom and a healthy holiday,

      Rochelle

      Liked by 1 person

  • Querida Rochelle,
    Great historic write, as always. Your knowledge is unbelievable.
    I always learn something new. While reading, I was struck by the word “tallis’.
    I immediately had a flashback to my Jewish neighborhood. I knew what it was and so many other things when I watched the movie-mini series Unorthodox: etc. There’s a spiritual connection for me. Thank you for sharing.
    Happy Passover to you, Jan and your family.
    Shalom y Abrazos,
    Isadora 😎

    Liked by 1 person

  • A wonderful touching story, and mainly true? Wow. It’s amazing how you put the two together, the Rainbow Division and the rainbow picture. Or did you choose the picture after your husband showed you the story? Just curious. Where do you get them, anyway?

    Like

    • Dear Genia,

      Ya got me on this one. I did look for the right picture to go with my story. I don’t always do that. In fact I try not to. This story was too good to pass up and it was just in time. Yes, the story is mainly true. Although the young private is fictitious. The rest of the events are facts woven together.
      Mostly I get my photos from other fictioneers. Some I ‘borrow’ with permission. 😉 Thank you.

      Shalom,

      Rochelle

      Like

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