[Cz-L] Czernowitz debate

From: fred love <fredhotman_at_yahoo.com>
Date: Sat, 17 May 2008 20:15:30 -0400
To: Czernowitz-L_at_cornell.edu
Reply-to: fred love <fredhotman_at_yahoo.com>

Dear Jerome

It is with interest that I am following the flow of information
regarding events and other matters about the city.
When the fire burst on us I was only 10. We were apparently fortunate
that we received
a Calotescu permit to stay. Some othe members of our family were not
so fortunate they received one earlier and were deported to
Transnistria. We lived inthe Stephaniegasse near the scoala primara
not far from the Mehlplatz. My father Mendel had Pelzsalon in the
Myself and my brother from Israel made a visit to Czernowitz with
mixed group from other countries via Israel-Roumania.
Being grown up I could only remember the area around the centre of
the city. We were not permited to enter our home not even to look
around by the new ocupiers. We stayed at the Ceremus Hotel ( which
would have been worthy for a Hollywood comedy) we also visited
Sadagura where my mother came from she was a Brender and Poholauti
Zastavna where my grandfather was a substantial landowner again not
much to see. We were through inquiry fortunate to meet up with one of
the farmers who knew the family and as proof that he knew them he
enumerated them by name with bits of Yidish thrown in. He related to
us about the murder of the entire jewish population in that area. In
Czernowitz we visited the cemetery jungle we could not get to our
family graves some local demanded no less than US$3oo.oo to clear a
path but no guarantie that we find the right grave. Many new locals
buttoned us on the street with the cry the remaining jews should come
back and restore the lost culture, economy and the vitality of the
former Czernowitz. Also we met some jewish people whilst visiting the
former jewish Culturhaus where they are allowed only one small room.
Most of the jews live a hand to mouth existence they live on overseas
welfare. In the 2 weeks we stayed I formed my opinion that the
majority of the populace has very little interest in a revival as
these are new to the city from the Ukraine It would be nice to
restore some of the wonderfull jewish edifices among them the
Temple(the side windows have still got the etched Star of David ) The
Culturhaus should also be returned to the jewish Community. If the
jewish people living there could be given back these properties that
at least belonged to the former jewish Community it would be an
invaluable gesture. However I would not hold my breath. Most of the
guides will tell you that 90% of the former jewish population
migrated to the USA and Israel (mind you at the time there was no
Israel). We asked what about the mass graves where jewish men were
mudered after rebuilding the bridge across the Prut. There should be
a way to restore some self esteem to the jewish presence before
embarking on some grandiose scheme. Memorial are for the living who
can relate or want to relate to a memory. I would like to thank
you for allowing me to participate in some small measure.
Fred Weisinger
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Received on 2008-05-18 00:15:30

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