The founding session of the
World Congress of Mountain Jews (WCMJ) took place in Tel-Aviv in February.
It attracted more than two hundred guests from all over the globe
– Russia, Israel, USA, Canada, Azerbaijan etc. The Russian Foundation
for Preservation and Development of the Jewish Culture, Euro-Asian
Jewish Congress, Federation of Jewish Organizations and Communities,
Union of Caucasian Jews in Israel, Moscow Mountain Jews Community
“Beit Talkhum” and a number of other Jewish organizations acted as
founders of the WCMJ.
Shortly before the Congress, the delegates and guests participated
in the inauguration of the “Beit Talkhum” synagogue in Tirat Karmel,
a city where a large Mountain Jews community resides. The session
adopted the decision to establish WCMJ, elected its steering bodies,
approved the organizational charter and the first resolutions of
the Congress. Zaur Gilalov was elected President of the World Congress
of Mountain Jews.
MOUNTAIN JEWS – A NATION
Author of the article shares his impressions of the founding session
of the World Congress of Mountain Jews – a new public forum.
A prominent Moscow figure, Sergey Weinstein, PhD, was elected
Executive Vice President of the Congress.
It was the Moscow delegation that called the tune at the session.
They came up with the very idea of establishing an international
non-governmental organization; they did all the necessary preparatory
work and assumed the greatest share of costs incurred to implement
such a large-scale project.
The author outlined the history of the Mountain Jews, another
stage of which has become the Congress in Tel-Aviv. He was assisted,
in analyzing the people’s roots, by Yuri Murzakhanov, candidate
of historical sciences from Kabardino-Balkaria.
A TIME TO GATHER STONES…
An article on the first founding session of the World Congress of
Mountain Jews where this permanent international non-governmental
organization was officially established.
According to the founders’ design, the organization will facilitate
official representation of the people’s interest in state and public
Participants of the Congress expressed a desire to work out a
modern alphabet of the Mountain Jews, publish periodicals in various
parts of the world, to declare Krasnaya Sloboda an architectural
and historical site and open an ethnographic museum there. It was
also observed that the Congress is another logical step in the process
that was commenced in Moscow, at the first international workshop
“Mountain Jews – History and Modernity” and in Baku and Guba at
the international scientific and practical conference “Mountain
Jews of the Caucasus”. These events were organized on the initiative
and under the auspices of the Russian Foundation for Preservation
and Development of the Jewish Culture, founded by Tair Gurshumov,
a prominent businessman.
HOLIDAY OF FREEDOM
This is an article on the Pesah commandment, which is given to us
in commemoration of the exodus from Egypt: freedom from slavery, liberation
of soul and formation of the Jewish nation.
The article looks at what guidelines should be observed during
a holiday meal: how to pass the eve of the holiday, how to cook
and eat Matzo, how many glasses of wine to drink to wind up the
Pesah commandments relate equally to men and women. Children are
also taught to observe these rites to acquaint them with the commandments
before they come of full age. The great commandment instructs to
tell of the Exodus from Egypt and, as the tradition has it, the
more is said, especially on the Easter night, the better.