16 January 2009

An Arm, A Leg And A…

Freedom is expensive.

Historically, it has been literarily been paid for with blood.

Some would give an arm and a leg to be free and have.

And some men in Cuba are willing to part with a piece of something that’s very dear and near to them in order to have the opportunity to join a very exclusive club and leave Castro’s dungeon.

From the Wall Street Journal:

Like many young Cubans, 23-year-old Yosniel Castro wants an opportunity to leave this Communist-ruled island for a better life. Unlike many of his peers, he may have found a way out: Judaism.

The journey from Havana to Jerusalem, however, isn't easy. The process of converting to Judaism takes years and includes being approved by a council of elders at the synagogue and then an ordained rabbi. Since Cuba has none, usually converts have to wait for a visiting rabbi from Israel, Argentina or Chile. Last but not least, male converts have to submit to a ritual circumcision. In 2007, dozens of adult Cuban men underwent circumcision as part of their conversion process.

Since 1992, Bet Shalom has had a rotating troupe of mentors from Argentina, often rabbinical students, who usually commit to a two-year stint, instructing younger members of the congregation as well as conversos. The latest mentor, Fernando Lapiduz, hails from Rosario, in Argentina's grain belt.
In 2007, his first year in Havana, Mr. Lapiduz converted 71 Jews, including nearly two dozen adult men. They were required to submit to ritual circumcision by an ordained mohel whom Mr. Lapiduz imported from Argentina. "He did them all in one week," says Mr. Lapiduz proudly.
Mr. Zabicki was lucky -- he was circumcised in Mexico a week after his birth. "For those older guys...Well, it was a pretty complicated operation," he says with a grimace.
A complicated operation and an ironic situation to say the least.
While Castro’s role model, Hitler, was persecuting, incarcerating and slaughtering Jews in Europe, many Jews either converted to or pretended to be Christian in order to escape the his concentration camps.
And now in Cuba people convert to Judaism in order to escape Castro’s island concentration camp.

1 comment:

Fantomas said...

Si Obama es comunista oye añademe en la lista...

"Obama Esta Es Tu Casa" sign on your house on Tuesday..;)

Posted by Gusano at January 18, 2009 01:33 PM

Mi casa esta abierta para Obama siempre. He is my commander in chief what Can I tell you