by Chanita Teitz

Last Thursday, Thanksgiving night, my husband and I went to a late movie at 11 p.m. I don’t remember when we last went to a movie, since there isn’t much today that we are interested in or that is appropriate to see. This movie, with a Holocaust plot, seemed good, so we went. I realized how long it had been since I was last in a movie theater when I saw the renovations in the theater, including leather recliners. They weren’t there last time. What first-class comfort!

The movie wasn’t your typical Holocaust film. The Book Thief was not as much about Jews as it was about morals, apathy, acquiescence, and fear. All of these characteristics, as displayed by average German people. It was a long movie, a full two hours, but I could have stayed all night in those seats.

The movie made me realize how much life went on as usual in the German cities. It was as if nothing horrendous was going on anywhere else. Even when they saw a Jew being dragged from his house, people stood around like spectators and then with a shrug they went back to whatever they were doing. One man, Hans, spoke up to the officer dragging the man away, and then went home and cried like a baby, fearing for his own life and the safety of his family. The SS would surely retaliate for his interference.

What the SS didn’t know was that until just before this Jew was dragged away, Hans had been hiding another Jew in his basement until it became too dangerous to continue. Some people possessed some moral fiber, but there were too few like that. There were the rabble-rousers who charismatically spurred the mindless masses to hate. Where was someone charismatic enough to have stopped Hitler in his tracks? Why did people vote for him in the first place?

The other thing I took from this movie is that history repeats itself. I see things today that we should stop before they escalate. The rabble-rousers who foment racial hatred or hatred of any kind need to be stopped by others as loudly and as forcefully as possible. The Israel-bashers have to be stopped. Those who think that Iran and nuclear bombs will just go away have to be roused from their delusion. Don’t wait until it is too late and don’t turn a deaf ear or think that if we just act as if nothing is really happening, everything will just be all right.

Important: Someone was hurt on Main Street near the Chase Bank on Monday in a “knockout” crime. If you saw anything or have any information, please call Avi Avramcheyiv at 646-420-3796 or

Some of the kids at Chazaq’s Chanukah Carnival were so excited that they jumped onto the stage to be photographed with Koshi the Kosher Clown and his oversized Cartoon characters and (standing, R—L) Yaniv Meirov (Chazaq director and carnival organizer), Dr. Paul Brody (Chazaq supporter) and his son Joey (carnival volunteer).
Some of the kids at Chazaq’s Chanukah Carnival were so excited that they jumped onto the stage to be photographed with Koshi the Kosher Clown and his oversized Cartoon characters and (standing, R—L) Yaniv Meirov (Chazaq director and carnival organizer), Dr. Paul Brody (Chazaq supporter) and his son Joey (carnival volunteer).

Hundreds Attend Chazaq’s Festive Community Chanukah Carnival

Queens was ablaze in Chanukah spirit on Sunday, December 1, thanks to the Chazaq organization and their incredible Community Chanukah Carnival, which attracted hundreds of youngsters and their parents from Queens and beyond. Inflatable Slide Bounce, games, food, The Kosher Clown, Elmo, Scooby-Doo, face painting, Mickey & Minnie Mouse, a mini-Chinese auction and jaw-dropping entertainment–it was all there in the main auditorium of the Yeshiva of Central Queens. From the moment you entered the building, you could sense the excitement. The carnival attracted several political luminaries such as Congresswoman Grace Meng, State Assemblyman David Weprin, City Councilman-elect Rory Lancman, and Queens Borough President-elect Melinda Katz’s representative, Aaron Cyperstein. Kids and their parents stayed for many hours, many for the entire carnival, enjoying different facets of Chanukah.

Chazaq is an organization which has one goal in mind: to “Build a Stronger Future” for the Jewish community. Based in Queens, NY, and gradually expanding across the globe, Chazaq–under the helm of its founder, Rav Ilan Meirov, and his brother, Director Yaniv Meirov, who organized the successful carnival–has inspired thousands of people through its various programs, which serve everyone from the very young to the elderly, since its inception in 2006.

Upcoming Events

As a reminder, the Kew Gardens Hills Homeowners Civic Association Inaugural Legislative Breakfast will take place this Sunday morning, December 8, at 9:30 a.m. at the Young Israel of Kew Gardens Hills, on 150th Street & 70th Road. Admission $25. RSVP Cynthia Zalisky 718-544-9033, ext. 6401.

Sunday Evening Shiur at Yeshiva of Central Queens. Rabbi Dovid Goldwasser will be speaking December 8, at 8:00 p.m. in the YCQ dining room. The event is on behalf of Our Jewish Children, an organization that helps with funds for students (in kindergarten through high school) to attend yeshivos instead of public school. For more information call Susie Garber at 917-696-2433.

‘12th Night of Chanukah’ Event from Singles4Singles. Sunday night, December 8, in Kew Gardens Hills, 6:30-9:00 p.m. Exact address to be provided to registered participants before the event. $12 (including PayPal fees) must be paid in advance. Light refreshments will be provided. The event is expected to include about 12 men and 12 women; due to limited space, each registrant must either be a first-time Singles4Singles participant, or must recruit and sign up together with a first-time attendee.

Other qualifications, besides good middos and other “givens”: college-educated gentlemen (29-44) who are koveii ittim laTorah and daven three times a day (preferably with a minyan) and college-educated women (27-44) who wear skirts and dresses only and plan to cover their hair after marriage. For more information, contact, call 347-674-3833, or see the event listing at

The 6th Asara B’Teves Program. Motzei Shabbos, December 14, at 8:00 p.m, hosted by the Young Israel of Kew Gardens Hills. More than 18 shuls, yeshivos and organizations are co-sponsoring the event.

Rabbi Yoel Schonfeld, Mara D’Asra of the Young Israel of KGH and president of the VHQ will welcome and introduce the speakers. Introductory remarks will be given by Rabbi Dovid Z. Sheinfeld, Rav, Congregation Degel Israel. The guest speaker will be Rabbi Paysach Krohn, world-renowned author and lecturer. These outstanding and captivating speakers will surely inspire everyone.

Admission is free and parking is available in the YCQ parking lot. v

Chanita Teitz is a real-estate broker at Astor Brokerage in Kew Gardens Hills, serving the entire Queens vicinity. For all your real-estate needs, call her at 718-263-4500 or e-mail


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