October 12, 1999 |
Israel confirmed that 400 Cuban Jews were brought to the country in the past five years in a secret operation that had the blessing of Cuban leader Fidel Castro. Cuban immigrants interviewed at a center in the southern coastal town of Ashkelon said the operation was common knowledge in Cuba. But a spokesman for the small Jewish community in Cuba angrily denied any secret operation, saying some Cuban Jews had left for Israel, but not in high numbers and not as part of a secret pact.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
December 9, 1997 |
Many of the 35 people gathered at Kids N' Paint last week had never painted. Others were regulars at the craft store, where customers paint ceramic gifts or have painting parties for birthdays and other special occasions. But they all felt a connection to the menorahs they painted as gifts for 90 Jews in Santiago, Cuba--many of whom this year will celebrate their first Hanukkah, which begins at sundown Dec. 23.
September 1, 1992 |
In a dimly lit basement in the section of the city known as Old Havana, a game of dominoes is going fast and furious. Elderly men hover around the table, betting and bickering in two languages--Spanish and Yiddish. Again and again, Cuban pesos change hands. "Moishe, Moishe, pay up," insists Abraham Berezniak, the lone middle-aged player and this night's big winner. "Hurry." They hurry because sunset is six minutes away.
July 20, 1995
The 15th anniversary Jewish Film Festival, boasting eight world or North American premieres and offering 42 films this year, opens today in San Francisco and continues there through July 27. The festival also runs in Berkeley from July 29-Aug. 3. While similar, smaller festivals are held in other cities around the country, this is the largest of its kind. The works come from 14 countries, and they are all by and about Jews.
September 5, 2011 |
He carries a dictionary under his arm and wears a very large Star of David around his neck. His name is Fidel Babani, but you can call him Senor Scrabble. Babani, in addition to being an active member of Cuba's tiny Jewish community, is president of the also small, but growing, Cuban Scrabble Assn. Two very different passions, perhaps, but in his island nation, adherents have followed parallel paths: From both vantage points, Babani has seen slow, sometimes contradictory change.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
January 21, 1989 |
Standing shoulder to shoulder, the largest crowd of worshipers since Fidel Castro's Communist revolution all but silenced the Roman Catholic Church here in the early 1960s overflowed into the streets outside the Cathedral of Havana. As Cardinal Roger Etchegaray of France ended an unusual Vatican mission to Cuba with a solemn New Year's Mass, he posed a crowd-pleasing question: "What message shall I take to the Pope?" "That he come! That he come! That he come!"