Thursday, September 16, 2010

Jewish Odessa

This is part of the Holocaust Memorial in Odessa, Ukraine. Prior to World War I, Odessa was considered the land of milk and honey for Jews. It had more Jews than any city except for New York and Warsaw, and 70 synagogues.
As a trading city, Odessa attracted many different nationalities and generated great wealth, much of which is still visible today in the opera house, the Bristol Hotel and other beautiful buildings. Many Jews, who were mainly traders, left Odessa at the time of the Russian Revolution. However, enough remained that some 25,000 were killed when the Nazis occupied the city during World War II.
A number of others were saved by their Christian neighbours, and Odessa's small Holocaust Memorial pays tribute to both groups. Today there are two historic synagogues, both Orthodox, in Odessa.


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