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Jews of the Ukraine in the Cross Hairs

Dear Friends,

This is a post from the World Union of Progressive Judaism about the situation in Ukraine.  This morning another synagogue was vandalized.  It seems history is repeating itself.  Please read below and consider helping. 

Dear World Union Family:

 This morning, as our community members arrived at the synagogue center in Simferopol, they discovered anti semitic slogans stating “Death to the Jews” painted all over the doors of the synagogue, as well as damage to windows and other parts of the building.  


As the unrest in Ukraine unfolds, concerns for the safety and well being of our communities in the Ukraine is growing steadily, especially in the rural areas and Crimea.


As seen on the news, the Crimean peninsula is considered of strategic importance to Russia, and at the time of this newsflash it seems that Russian troops have occupied the main airports and centers of power in the capital and surroundings. This violent atmosphere has quickly given rise to harassment and attacks on our communities.

 Rabbi Michael Kapustin says:” The city is occupied by Russians. Apparently Russians intend to take over the Crimea and make it a part of Russia.  If this were the case I would leave the country. In this case I will leave this country since I want to live in democratic Ukraine. In the meanwhile, in spite of all  our hesitation,s my family has decided to stay. If anyone comes tonight I will be in the synagogue to light the candles. Wider Shabbat services will not take place due to security reasons.  

 According to Anatoly Gendin, chair of the community, “Clearly, it was important for the anti-Semites to commit this crime. Since the crisis began prices went up by 30%, pensions aren’t being paid.  As usual, Jews are blamed  reason of these disasters and Jews are held responsible. I am afraid to think how this will progress. “

  As the situation is unsafe, the community has instructed all members to stay indoors and stock up on food and supplies.

 The WUPJ has initiated an emergency campaign to support our communities through this crisis, and hope to provide  in hope to provide urgently needed security measures, supplies and equipment to the communities. If you are interested in joining this effort please click here


We hope and pray that quiet will return soon to the streets of Ukraine, and as Shabbat settles in on the streets.

 Ose Shalom Bimromov – May the One who makes peace in the heavens, help bring peace here on earth, for all the Household of Israel and for all God’s creations.

 Shabbat Shalom

 Mike Grabiner, Chairman of World Union for Progressive Judaism

Anne Molloy, Chair of WUPJ FSU Committee

Alex Kagan, Director of WUPJ FSU Program



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