Israel Briefs: ‘Miss Holocaust Survivor’ Crowned in Haifa and More


‘Miss Holocaust Survivor’ Crowned in Haifa

Tova Ringer, a 93-year-old great-grandmother who survived Auschwitz, was named “Miss Holocaust Survivor” on Oct. 14 in a beauty pageant in Haifa, The Times of Israel reported.

Ringer, a Polish native now living in Haifa, lost her parents, four sisters and her grandmother during the Holocaust.

“I’m very happy,” Ringer told Reuters. “It’s something special. I wouldn’t believe that at my age I would be a beauty.”

The event — which had 12 contestants — drew a crowd in the thousands that included ministers, Knesset members and other public figures, along with Nazi death camps survivors who came to cheer their fellow survivors.

Yad Ezer L’Haver, or Helping Hand, an organization dedicated to assisting needy Holocaust survivors in Israel, organized the event.

Joint Chanukah Stamp Issued on Oct. 16 by Israel Post and United States Postal Service

A Chanukah stamp that also celebrates 70 years of diplomatic relations between Israel and the United States was issued jointly by the two countries on Oct. 16, JTA reported.

The United States Postal Service issued the new design at the Touro Synagogue in Newport, R.I., which is the oldest synagogue in America, while Israel Post did likewise at the American Center in Jerusalem.

“Today’s joint stamp issue is a symbol of the shared values and the cultural affinity between the United States and Israel,” U.S. Ambassador to Israel David Friedman said in Jerusalem.

The stamp by artist Tamar Fishman includes a Chanukah menorah created using a papercutting technique, as well as a shape resembling an ancient oil jug to represent the miracle of the oil that burned in the candelabra in the Holy Temple, dreidels and a pomegranate plant.

The Israeli and U.S. postal authorities first issued joint stamps in 1996.

Israeli Olympian to Auction His Gold Medal

The only Israeli gold medalist said he needs money, so he plans to auction off the medal he won in the 2004 Olympics for windsurfing, JTA reported.

In a Facebook post, Gal Fridman said he wanted to get in touch with an eBay expert “who understands how to auction a rare item, the only one of its kind in Israel.”

Fridman, 43, who retired in 2008, also won a bronze medal at the 1996 Summer Games in Atlanta. He now works as a photographer.

The gold medal has had an interesting past: It was stolen in 2005 from a safe in Fridman’s parents’ home, but later found in a nearby forest. He said then that “no amount of money will replace this medal.”

New Jewish Neighborhood Approved for Hebron

The first housing to be built in 16 years for Jewish Israelis in the West Bank city of Hebron was approved Oct. 14 by Israel’s Cabinet, JTA reported.

The $6 million project in an area known as the Hezekiah Quarter will include 31 homes, a day care center and a park on a site that was formerly an Israel Defense Forces base.

The project land was owned by Jews prior to Israel’s 1948 establishment and later leased to Hebron’s Palestinian municipality. A central bus station was built there and later moved.


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