There’s this myth that exists within and outside the Jewish world.  An idea that’s been spread since the Holocaust and that for some actually defines their Jewish identity.

The myth is that Jews are the downtrodden of the world.  The weak.  The victims.  Unable to control their fate in a hostile world.

It’s time that myth evaporated and left.  It’s time that we don’t only remember the Holocaust for the disturbing images that its known for, but for the images of strength that came from it, and for the photographs since that have shown Jews displaying their true inner nature.  A nature that is strong, steadfast, and unflagging.

For that reason, I’ve made this blog post.  Below are photographs from throughout history that represent the strength of the Jewish people.  Don’t forget them.

1. Two Girls Protest Against Child Labor, 1909

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According to this site: ”Two young girls proudly wear sashes calling for an end to child labor, referring to the practice as ‘child slavery.’”

2. Women Captured After The Warsaw Uprising, 1943

Warsaw fightersThese women were captured with weapons during the Warsaw uprising.  The resilience can be seen in their eyes.  And you may be happy to know that the woman on the right survived after she was sent to an internment camp and later moved to Israel.  Read about her account here.

3. US Soldiers Pray In Home Of Former Nazi Propaganda Minister, 1945

W5j874. Buchenwald Survivors Arrive In Haifa To Be Arrested, 1945

Buchenwald SurvivorsArriving on the Matarao, a refugee ship, and knowing full well they would be arrested, these men, some garbed in their Holocaust uniforms, demand to be allowed into Israel.

5. Survivors Of Buchenwald Upon Arriving In Haifa, 1945

DSC_0030The eight year old on the right is named Yisrael Meir Lau, otherwise known as the former Chief Rabbi of Israel and current Chief Rabbi of Tel Aviv.  They both arrived on the same boat as the men pictured above.

6. Child Survivors Of Buchenwald Form A Star Of David, 1946

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7. A Woman Receives Basic Training In Grenade Throwing, 1948

grenade_rubingerTaken by one of the most famous photographers in Israeli history, David Rubinger, this image displays the training a Haganah girl went through during the War of Independence.

8. Men Gaze At The Kotel After Liberating In The Six Day War, 1967

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This is arguably the most famous photo taken since Israel’s creation. After years of the Western Wall being out of control of Israel, these soldiers were among the first to liberate the landmark.  Read a beautiful description of the events surrounding the photograph here.

9. Settler Girl Sits Atop Hill, 2011

laub_teensettler_620bThis fascinating article details the lives of some of Israel’s most hardened warriors: settler girls.  This girl was one of the people profiled.

10. Shalit Returns Home, 2011

Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit salutes Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on arrival at Tel Nof air force baseJust like my first photography post, I felt it appropriate to end with a picture of Gilad Shalit.  His capture and subsequent liberation is the epitome of pure Jewish strength.  A person put through hell who nonetheless survives and now has a chance to thrive.

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