Dec 2, 2010 12:13 pm


Here goes the NYT again, secure in its Jewish ownership, the loyalty of its Jewish readership and a Jewish op-ed writer, daring to celebrate Hanukkah with an op-ed questioning its ongoing relevance. Why? Because it celebrates a military victory in Israel. Much more relevant, the author asserts would be to make into a celebration of Diasporas escaping annihilation, in other words, a second Purim. After all, let us not forget that the NYT has opposed the creation of Israel and remains uncomfortable with its need to defend itself.

Preoccupied withg Wikileak cables, I missed the op-ed. But many Times readers did not and let the paper know. My favorite letter to the editor is the shortest:

To the Editor:

How sad that Howard Jacobson cannot celebrate the true meaning of Hanukkah that its nightly candles illuminate: the triumphant survival of the Jewish people, in our own time as in antiquity, amid the enemies — from Antiochus to Ahmadinejad — who would destroy them.

Jerold S. Auerbach
Newton, Mass., Dec. 1, 2010

The writer is professor emeritus of history at Wellesley College.

Jackobson even bemoans the musical quality of"Rock of Ages." This rousing rendition of"Who shall retell?" should be more to his liking though personally I doubt it.

Who can retell, the things that befell us, Who can count them? In every age a hero or sage, Came to our aid.

Hark! In days of yore in Israel's ancient land, Brave Maccabeus led the faithful band. But now all Israel must as one arise, Redeem itself through deed and sacrifice.

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