UK news

Hoffman honorary degree

May 2, 2008

Writer Eva Hoffman will receive an honorary degree from Warwick University in July. The Krakow-born academic, whose parents survived the Holocaust hiding in Ukraine, is professor of literature and creative writing and an ex-New York Times writer and editor.

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Farewell to a mohel

May 2, 2008

Manchester’s Rev Chaim Jacob Heilpern, who has died aged 94, was a mohel, renowned for his willingness to circumcise Jewish children of non-Jewish fathers. He often did not charge for his services, and circumcised babies in wartime camps on the Isle of Man.

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MPs clash over cash for Auschwitz school trips

By Leon Symons, May 2, 2008

Labour MPs in Scotland have launched a scathing attack on rival parties over funding for visits to Auschwitz by secondary-school pupils.

The SNP and the Tories joined forces to push through a decision in the Scottish Parliament that schools should decide for themselves how to spend £150,000 given to Scotland by Westminster — and that there was no requirement for the money to be spent on the Auschwitz visits.

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BBC cleared in wedding-snaps row

By Simon Rocker, May 2, 2008

Ofcom, the broadcasting watchdog, has rejected a complaint of unfairness made against the BBC by a pair of Salford wedding photographers. Hilary and Gary Segal had protested about stories featuring dissatisfied customers on the local news programme North West Tonight shown on April 3 and 11 last year. A number of brides had complained that they had not received the album of wedding photographs they had ordered from the Segals, owners of the Segal Studio and Memories in the Making. Some of the clients had received only prints and negatives, while others had got nothing at all.

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American to lead Oxford Centre

By Simon Rocker, May 2, 2008

An academic who has written books on Kabbalah and Jewish belief is to be the first American head of the Oxford Centre for Hebrew and Jewish Studies.

David Ariel, 58, the acting president of Baltimore Hebrew University, will succeed Peter Oppenheimer in October. He retires after eight years as president of the centre.

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Holocaust denier is BNP special guest

By Dana Gloger, May 2, 2008

A convicted Holocaust denier was one of the guests invited to speak at a British National Party meeting this week about how the party could make further progress in Europe.

Bruno Gollnisch, a French MEP and vice-president of the far-right National Front party, spoke at the Rembrandt Hotel in Knightsbridge, Central London.

The meeting came three days before Britain was due to vote in local elections. He appeared with Austrian MEP Andreas Mölzer, expelled from the country’s Freedom Party for being too extreme, and Georg Mayer, an Austrian Freedom Party officer.

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Beware the millions in your inbox

By Rachel Fletcher, May 2, 2008

An email hoaxer is targeting victims by claiming to be distributing millions of pounds left by a London Jewish philanthropist.

Recipients of the email, which is sent from “Barrister Sandy Carrington Law Firm”, are told they have been left £9 million from businessman Maurice Wohl’s estate. They are asked to provide details such as their address and occupation.

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Bomber drops in

By Rachel Fletcher, May 2, 2008

An apology by a former German bomber pilot has been welcomed by Jewish war veterans and others.

Willi Schludecker, 87, returned to Bath last week to apologise for three raids on the city in April 1942, in which he had taken part.

Mr Schludecker, one of the Luftwaffe’s most decorated pilots, dropped nearly 4,000kg of bombs on the city.

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I’m the victim of smear campaigns, says mayor

By Simon Rocker, April 25, 2008

Ken Livingstone, the Mayor of London, believes that he was the victim of orchestrated campaigns over incidents that have produced outrage within the Jewish community during his recent term of office.

Speaking to the JC ahead of next Thursday’s Mayoral election, the capital’s Labour’s leader criticised reaction to his welcome of the Islamic cleric Sheikh Yusuf Al-Qaradawi in 2004 and his comparison of a Jewish journalist to a concentration-camp guard.

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College rejects Shoah denier

By Daniella Peled, April 25, 2008

Auschwitz inmates ‘enjoyed swimming pool and water polo’, UCL fellow claims

A university has withdrawn a researcher’s fellowship after he published an article claiming that the gas chambers of Auschwitz never existed.

Nicholas Kollerstrom, an academic specialising in astronomy, posted the article, The Auschwitz “Gas Chamber” Illusion, on the website of the revisionist Committee for Open Debate on the Holocaust.

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