Every year the Jews around the World commemorate the Holocaust Day. This day is dedicated to the memory of the 6,000,000 Jews exterminated in Europe, North Africa and the Meddle East during the WWII.
The Nazis considered Jews as a specific race, and thoroughly exterminated even those converted to other religions. They believed in the "purity of blood" and what they considered as "Jewish blood", was cursed by definition.
But in reality, the Jews, originally an Abrahamic group of Bedouin tribes, of the Semite origin and language, similar to the Arabs, has mixed with the people of all the lands of Diaspora. Jewish tradition is unique in the sense of the definition "who is a Jew". To be a Jew does not strictly mean to be a person of the "Jewish origin". Anyone who chooses to join the Jewish religion, becomes immediately a Jew by the nationality. This is how the Jewish communities spread out around the World, creating the Jews racially identical to the Europeans, the Chinese, the Indians and the Arabs. They spoke local languages, they cooked local foods, they followed local traditions. But still they stayed the Jews, were prosecuted as Jews, expelled as Jews and kept the feelings of being Jewish.
This is a phenomena which has brought the establishment of the Jewish State in Israel, where the Jewish immigrants and refugees from over 90 countries build now a new society and the the Jewish nation. But this day is also a reminder of the Jewish communities in all those areas who had survived for over 2,000 years and was either exterminated or wiped out.
Over 50% of the European Jewry. from France to Russia, where slaughtered by the Nazis and their collaborators between 1939-1945. The only safe land was Palestine, but its doors were locked by the British who ruled the country and did not want to deal with the flood of the Jewish refugees.
With the end of the WWII, the Arab countries stripped the local Jews of the citizenship, robbed their property and pushed the whole Jewish communities into exile.
As a result of what had happened in the mid-XX Century, most all of the Jewish communities in Europe, the Northern Africa, Middle East and Iran, where wiped out.
Finally, the prospering and long-lived Jewish communities in Poland, Romania, Holland, Germany, Ukraine and many other European countries were wiped out; all the Jewish Communities in the Meddle East outside of Israel have disappeared forever; the last remnants of the Far East and Indian Jews chose to move to the safety of Israel; vast majority of the Soviet Jews emigrated to israel or the the USA or assimilated.
Almost nothing has been left of the Jewish World outside of Israel, USA and just few more other countries. Today over half of the World Jewry live in israel, where the modern Israeli nation is recreated. If the memories of the Jewish life around the world is not preserved, just one or two generations later it will be forgotten. Our obligation is to keep this memory in israel, where our Nation is preserved and thriving.
Jews of Yemen
Jews of Morocco
Jews of the Middle East, from top left to right down -
Jews of Iraq, Syria, Lebanon, Palestine and Transjordan
Jews of Iran and Kurdistan
Jews of Burma
Jewish Children in Europe before the deportation to the Death Camps
Ben Gurion (in the centerMy in the Burmese clothes') visiting Burma
My Mother's family - Turkish and Ukrainian Jews