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  • Hungarian Literati Divided by Salvo That Ignited Anti-semitic Firestorm

    When Hungarian writer Kornel Dobrentei implied at a right-wing rally earlier this year that Jews were imposing a moral Holocaust on Hungary, didn’t just spark one of the ugliest anti-Semitic episodes the country has seen in years. He also shook up Hungary’s literati. Since that rally in January, more than 160 writers have resigned from… More ▸

  • Debate over Budapest Museum Overshadowed by Terrorist Threat

    It has just been inaugurated, but Budapest’s new, state-run Holocaust Memorial Center already is stirring up a society that has yet to deal fully with its Holocaust history. A terrorism scare on the eve of Israeli President Moshe Katsav’s arrival for Thursday’s ceremony added further controversy to the opening of a facility that has been… More ▸

  • Jewish Landmark Reached in Budapest As a New Orthodox Rabbi is Ordained

    An Orthodox rabbi was ordained in Budapest this week in what was described as the first such ceremony since the Holocaust. Former Israeli Chief Rabbi Mordechai Eliahu and one of Russia’s two chief rabbis, Berel Lazar, attended the ordination Tuesday of Shlomo Koves at Budapest’s Chabad Lubavitch synagogue. Eliahu and Lazar joined Rabbi Baruch Oberlander,… More ▸

  • Construction Starts in Budapest on $13 Million Holocaust Center

    Groundbreaking took place here this week for Hungary’s first Holocaust museum and education center. The center, to be built at an estimated cost of $13 million, is expected to be completed in April 2004, according to the president of the foundation establishing the center, Tibor Vamos. The museum, he said, will include a memorial to… More ▸

  • Eager to Dispel Bad Image, Officials in Hungary Meet with Jewish Groups

    Eight months after Hungary’s right-wing government was ousted, the new leadership is trying to rehabilitate the image of a country suffering from an upsurge in anti-Semitic rhetoric and incidents. A top police official was dismissed soon after a Dec. 4 incident in which some 100 skinheads were given permission to demonstrate in a Budapest square… More ▸

  • Hungarian Police Apologize After Skinheads Disrupt Menorah Lighting

    Hungarian police are apologizing for allowing more than 100 skinheads to demonstrate just as members of Chabad were about to light a Chanukah candle in a downtown Budapest square. The skinheads, members of Hungary’s “Revisionist movement,” blocked the small square where Chabad members were about to light the sixth Chanukah candle on the evening of… More ▸

  • Jdc’s Director for Hungary Dies from Cancer at Age of 60

    Israel Sela, the American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee’s country director for Hungary, has died in Jerusalem at 60 after a four-year battle with cancer. Sela, an Israeli, took up his JDC position in Budapest in 1994. He was instrumental in developing a number of projects aimed at ensuring the future of the largest Jewish community… More ▸

  • A Hungarian Jew Who Survived Auschwitz Wins Nobel for Literature by Agnes Bohm

    An Auschwitz survivor who recently was criticized for defending Israel became the first Hungarian to win the Nobel prize for literature. The award to Imre Kertesz, 72, was announced Thursday. Hungarian Jews said the prize was gratifying to the entire community, while Prime Minister Peter Medgyessy told Kertesz that because of him, “the citizens of… More ▸