Summer Series : Ukraine

Each week this summer, K. brings you a selection of four pieces of content that have already appeared in our pages, but which have been brought together for the occasion around a few key themes. This week: Ukraine and Russia in three texts by Yeshaya Dalsace, Ivan Segré, Boris Czerny and an interview with the Chief Rabbi of Moscow in exile, Pinchas Goldschmidt.



A short trip to Ukraine: The Converts of Munkács.

By Yeshaya Dalsace – Published on March 29, 2023

Rabbi of the Massorti community in France, Yeshaya Dalsace went to Ukraine to Munkács – Moukatchevo in Ukrainian – where only a hundred Jews remain. A rabbinical conversion commission was recently organized there for about fifteen people. The process, which began years ago, had been suspended by the war. A travelogue.

Old Jewish quarter, Munkács [Moukatchevo] © Yeshaya Dalsace

>>> Read Yeshaya Dalsace’s text



The Shoah as a keystone for Ukraine’s entry into the European Community

By Boris Czerny – Published on May 24, 2023

Russia’s unbearable aggression against Ukraine is combined with the fact that the country under attack has a problematic relationship with its past, to say the least. The history of its national construction and its memory of the Shoah sometimes violate Jewish memory. Boris Czerny examines the place accorded to the Shoah in Ukraine, and asks what it means in the debate surrounding the country’s eventual integration into the European Union.

Ukrainian Steppe, Wikimedia commons

>>> Read Boris Czerny’s text


Memories of Ukraine: the conflict of libraries

By Ivan Segré – Published on November 9, 2022

In 1926, Samuel Schwarzbard assassinated Symon Petloura, the general-in-chief of the Ukrainian nationalist revolution, whose men were responsible for about 40% of the exactions committed during the pogroms that struck the Ukraine during the civil war (1918-1926). Paul Celan was born in Czernowitz, where Schwarzbard lived for a time and is now in Ukraine. Part of his poetry evokes “the widest of rivers”, the long history of anti-Semitic crime that links the history of pogroms to that of the Shoah. Ivan Segré dives into Celan’s poetry and questions, from it, a memory of the Ukraine like the gesture of Samuel Schwarzbard.

Czernowitz’s Jewish cemetery, Wikimédia commons.

>>> Read Ivan Segré’s text


Russian and Ukrainian Jews in the war. Interview with Pinchas Goldschmidt, former Chief Rabbi of Moscow

By Stéphane Bou & Lisa Vapné – Published on October 26, 2022

Pinchas Goldschmidt is no longer the Chief Rabbi of Moscow, a position he held for almost thirty years. Born in Zurich, he arrived in Russia in 1988, during the Gorbachev era, to work on restoring Jewish life at the time of perestroika. He decided to leave his adopted country after the invasion of Ukraine, when he was pressured to support the war. K. met him while in Paris for a meeting of the Institute for Religious Freedom and Security in Europe (IFFSE), of which he is a founding member, as President of the Conference of European Rabbis.

Pinchas Goldschmidt – website of the Conference of European Rabbis (CER)

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