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  • From Sofia to Jaffa: the Jews of Bulgaria and Israel

    Within two years of the establishment of the State of Israel in 1948, an astounding 45,000 of Bulgaria’s 50,000 Jews left voluntarily for Israel. This mass exodus was remarkable considering that Bulgaria was the only Axis power to prevent the deportation of its Jews to the death camps during World War II.
    After their arrival in Israel, the Jews of Bulgaria were recognized as a model immigrant group in a fledgling state attempting to absorb hundreds of thousands of newcomers from more than eig…

  • The forerunners: Dutch Jewry in the North American diaspora

    Between 1800 and 1880 approximately 6500 Dutch Jews immigrated to the United States to join the hundreds who had come during the colonial era. Although they numbered less than one-tenth of all Dutch immigrants and were a mere fraction of all Jews in America, the Dutch Jews helped build American Jewry and did so with a nationalistic flair. Like the other Dutch immigrant group, the Jews demonstrated the salience of national identity and the strong forces of ethnic, religious, and cultural instit…