Naples, Italy – Rabbi Refuses to Meet Mayor

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    Naples, Italy – The chief rabbi, Pierpaolo Pinhas Punturello, has snubbed the mayor, Rosa Russo Jervolino, by refusing to attend a city initiative to mark Holocaust Memorial Day today.

    In a letter, the religious leader of the Naples' Jewish community said he was not welcome at a function after comments made by the mayor, Jervolino, on the Middle East several months ago.

    "I will not meet our mayor since I will be at the University of Federico II for the presentation of the book, Judaism and Literature, an appointment that I made well before this, and as usual, the mayor's invitation was late," the letter said.

    "Anyway, I don't believe I could meet Jervolino calmly after last October, when he faced a peace delegation of Israeli-Palestinian guests hosted by our city, provincial and regional governments, when he compared the Middle East political situation to the Nazi occupation, confusing the victims whose vile execution we want to commemorate," the letter said.

    After the rabbi's withdrawal, another leading member of the city's Jewish community, Fabrizio Gallichi, advisor to the Union of Italian Jewish Communities, declined his invitation to the event. [aki]

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    6 COMMENTS

    1. Obviously history was not your forte in school. Instead of flapping your gums, or should I say fingers, go back and crack open a book and see which side the Italians were on!

    2. I am well aware of which side Italy was on.
      However, Mr. (Miss? Ms? Mrs?) Gumflapper, the destruction of European (and world) Jewery was not nearly as essential an element of Italian Facism as it was of German Nazism, nor is anti-semitism as core a value of the Italians as it is of the Poles.

    3. It’s funny. casalle 11:08 and Anon. 11:16 are on the same side.
      The words/actions of MR./MRS./MS. mayor (minor, really.) do not reflect on the attitude of the Italian people of the WWII era, or today.

    4. Kol HaKavod to the Jews of Italy. They say it like it is and label an enemy as what he is.
      I travel to Italy often to buy boys suits and I can tell you the Italians in general are not anti Jew in any way. The way the police close the street in front of the Shul I go to in Milano and the way nobody complains is a sign of the friendliness in general.

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