By Yochanan Gordon
Well before founding this newspaper over twenty years ago, my father, the editor and publisher of 5TJT, began his career in the broadcasting industry in a nightly show called Jewish Newsnight on WNYM in the late 1970’s and early to mid 1980’s. Over that span of about 8 years or so he regularly welcomed personalities such as Rabbi David Hollander, Shlomo Carlebach, The Megama Duo in Moshe Yess and Shalom Levine and Rabbi Meir Kahana Hy”d into his studio.
It has been many years since we have been attempting to impress upon him the importance of digitizing this collection of about 500 cassette tapes in what would be some serious nostalgia for the older generation who remembers these people during their prime and a way of conveying to the newer generation, in somewhat of a concrete manner the quality of Jews that preceded them and the wisdom and self-sacrifice that they endured to prepare the way for the ensuing generations.
This Chanukah, just a couple of days ago, my father was in his office reaching deeply into the box where these Cassettes lay for over three decades barely ever having been organized or even sifted through. My father related to me this morning that he reached into the pile praying silently that he unearth an interview of Reb Shlomo Carlebach. He reached deeply and pulled out a solitary unlabelled cassette tape. He placed it in the cassette recorder, whose discovery is itself a mini-miracle and lo and behold this interview of Reb Shlomo Carlebach from December, 1984 which coincided with Chanukah began to play.
In a Yom Tov which is centered on an unlikely search for a flask of pure oil; in a sense this interview and the message of pure self-sacrifice of how the Jews during the war years celebrated Chanukah at risk of their very lives, is a manifestation of the type of pure oil that we and our children can use in upgrading our experience of Chanukah this year.