Tag Archives: Vilnius Jewish cemetery

Piramónt in Šnipiškės: But What was Solemnly Agreed Back in 2009?



O P I N I O N

VILNIUS—After two apartment and business buildings started to go up a decade ago on the grounds of the old Jewish cemetery at Piramónt in the Šnipiškės (Shnípishok) district of this city, across the river from the city center, a damaging international conflict ensued between elements of the Lithuanian government on the one hand and Jewish groups around the world and a number of Western governments on the other.

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Posted in Appeals to the European Commission on Piramónt, Cemeteries and Mass Graves, CPJCE (London), Human Rights, Lithuania, Litvak Affairs, News & Views, Old Vilna Jewish Cemetery at Piramónt (in Šnipiškės / Shnípishok) | Tagged , , , , , , | Comments Off on Piramónt in Šnipiškės: But What was Solemnly Agreed Back in 2009?

Protocol of 26 August 2009 Meeting in Vilnius on the Old Vilna Jewish Cemetery at Piramónt (in today’s Šnipiškės)


 


DOCUMENTS   |   VILNA   JEWISH   CEMETERY  AT  PIRAMÓNT

Related: The 2015 saga. Paper Trail. DH sectionOther descriptions of the same 2009 agreement. The U.S. ambassador’s dispatch mentioning the rabbis’ payment for supervising “beautification” of the grounds. Embassy’s dispatch on the secrecy of the document. What were they actually paid? What were the same rabbis promised in 2015?  In the past, the slightest digging in the area revealed human remains throughout.

The Question: Does the agreement (which a US State Department cable, published by Wikipedia, makes clear was supposed to remain secret) really permit a twenty-five million dollar convention center in the heart of the old cemetery (and millions in subsequent development) where people will cheer, revel, drink in bars, use toilets and parking areas on top of and surrounded by tens of thousands of Jewish graves paid for by grieving Vilnius families over a period of more than five hundred years? Comment in 2015 by (inter alia) the chief rabbi of Lithuania, resident rabbinical Vilna Gaon scholar in Lithuania, a Christian leader, a Vilnius Holocaust survivor, Gaon of Vilna’s descendants in Israel at Tel Aviv’s Vilna Gaon Synagogue, and the Central Rabbinical Council of the United States and Canada.

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Posted in Appeals to the European Commission on Piramónt, Cemeteries and Mass Graves, CPJCE (London), Documents, Lithuania, Litvak Affairs, News & Views, Old Vilna Jewish Cemetery at Piramónt (in Šnipiškės / Shnípishok) | Tagged , , , , , , , | Comments Off on Protocol of 26 August 2009 Meeting in Vilnius on the Old Vilna Jewish Cemetery at Piramónt (in today’s Šnipiškės)

U.S. State Department’s 2009 Memo Refers to Rabbis Compliant on Old Vilna Cemetery, the Need for Paying for their Supervision, and — Need for Secrecy



VILNIUS—A memo from the United States Embassy here in the Lithuanian capital, dated 27 May 2009, released by Wikileaks  (as PDF) and in the public domain, expressed optimism about solution of the disputes that had arisen over desecration of Vilna’s old Jewish cemetery. The cemetery, known to generations of Vilna Jews as Piramónt, is within the Šnipiškės district (itself in Yiddish: Shnípishok).

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Posted in Appeals to the European Commission on Piramónt, Cemeteries and Mass Graves, CPJCE (London), Documents, Foreign Ministries: Holocaust Politics Abuse?, Lithuania, Litvak Affairs, News & Views, Old Vilna Jewish Cemetery at Piramónt (in Šnipiškės / Shnípishok), US Commission for Preservation of the American Heritage Abroad | Tagged , , , | Comments Off on U.S. State Department’s 2009 Memo Refers to Rabbis Compliant on Old Vilna Cemetery, the Need for Paying for their Supervision, and — Need for Secrecy

Text of Sept. 2008 Press Release from Experts Group on the Old Vilna Jewish Cemetery



VILNIUS—Because of its renewed relevance, the press release of the Experts Group summarizing the findings of the Geophysical Survey, dated 3 September 2008, concerning the old Vilna Jewish cemetery, is republished:

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Posted in Appeals to the European Commission on Piramónt, Cemeteries and Mass Graves, Lithuania, Litvak Affairs, News & Views, Old Vilna Jewish Cemetery at Piramónt (in Šnipiškės / Shnípishok) | Tagged , , | Comments Off on Text of Sept. 2008 Press Release from Experts Group on the Old Vilna Jewish Cemetery

U.S. State Department’s 2006 Conclusion about the Location of the Sports Palace in the Old Vilna Jewish Cemetery



VILNIUS—The following excerpt from a 21 June 2006 United States report from the American Embassy here to the Secretary of State in Washington deals with questions around the old Vilna Jewish Cemetery. The site, known to generations of Vilna Jews as Piramónt, is within the Šnipiškės district (itself in Yiddish: Shnípishok).

The document, entitled “Jewish Cemetery in Vilnius — Overview and Update,” now published at part of the Wikileaks Public Library of US Diplomacy (PDF here) emanates from a period when the “current debate” was focused on two new buildings, rather than on the Sports Palace per se.

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Posted in Appeals to the European Commission on Piramónt, Cemeteries and Mass Graves, Foreign Ministries: Holocaust Politics Abuse?, Lithuania, Litvak Affairs, News & Views, Old Vilna Jewish Cemetery at Piramónt (in Šnipiškės / Shnípishok) | Tagged , | Comments Off on U.S. State Department’s 2006 Conclusion about the Location of the Sports Palace in the Old Vilna Jewish Cemetery

Central Rabbinical Congress of the USA and Canada Protests Desecration of Old Vilna Jewish Cemetery



BROOKLYN, NEW YORK—The Central Rabbinical Congress (CRC) of the U.S.A. and Canada today released to the media the facsimile of the original Hebrew letter it has issued concerning plans for a convention center at the old Vilna Jewish cemetery at Piramónt, now in the Šnipiškės district of modern Vilnius, the capital of Lithuania (background; the paper trail to date). The facsimile is followed by an English translation provided by the CRC.

EXCERPT:

“We turn to the enlightened government of Lithuania, and to the European Union, and say: Please Brothers—do no evil! O Heaven! Aren’t we all children of the same father and mother? Why are we different than every other nation, that you decreed such terrible things against us?”

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Posted in Appeals to the European Commission on Piramónt, Cemeteries and Mass Graves, Lithuania, Litvak Affairs, News & Views, Old Vilna Jewish Cemetery at Piramónt (in Šnipiškės / Shnípishok), Politics of Memory | Tagged , , , , , , , | Comments Off on Central Rabbinical Congress of the USA and Canada Protests Desecration of Old Vilna Jewish Cemetery

Rabbi Shmuel Jacob Feffer: Rabbinic Judgment on the Old Vilna Jewish Cemetery



O P I N I O N

by Rabbi Shmuel Jacob Feffer

Editor’s note: The author is president of the World HaGró (Gaon of Vilna) Center in Israel, and co-editor of the Center’s seventy published volumes of the Gaon of Vilna’s works. He has been based in Vilnius around twenty-five years. The original handwritten document, with the rabbi’s signature and personal stamp, is available hereFor background on the issue, see here. For the paper trail to date, see here. A registry of the mounting international agreement with Rabbi Feffer’s position is here.


בסד ח′ תמוז התשע″ה לפ″ק פה ווילנא

זעקת קודש

למען אוהביך שוכני עפר בבית העלמין הישן דווילנא

    אני הרב הדר בעיר הזאת זה קרוב ל-25 שנה ומכיר היטב תהלוכותי′ה ובעיותי′ה, וחרד לעתידה היהודי ועל זכרון עברה הק′ והחשוב כידוע לכל, ועתה ראיתי חובה גדולה בנפשי לצאת בגלוי ולהסיר הלוט בעניין הנשגב דלהלן, ולפרסם האמת ללא צל ספק – העובדות הברורות כשמש בצהרים ולעמוד בפרץ ולא לתת למשחיתים לבוא ולנגוף ח″ו, ואדרבה ביתר תוקף ועוז דקדושה לעמוד איתן על משמרת הקודש למען ה′ ותורתו הק′ והאמונה הטהורה.

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Posted in Cemeteries and Mass Graves, Human Rights, Lithuania, Litvak Affairs, News & Views, Old Vilna Jewish Cemetery at Piramónt (in Šnipiškės / Shnípishok), Shmuel Jacob Feffer | Tagged , , , , | Comments Off on Rabbi Shmuel Jacob Feffer: Rabbinic Judgment on the Old Vilna Jewish Cemetery

Herbert Block’s Clarification on Participation in Lithuanian Government’s New Heritage Commission



NEW YORK—Herbert Block’s office today issued the following statement which in effect modifies the Lithuanian government’s published list of members of its new commission on the Lithuanian Jewish heritage. This clarification is now linked at relevant points in Defending History’s recent report on the cemetery saga in Vilnius.

Herbert Block has informed Defending History that, while he was appointed to the new Commission by the Government of Lithuania without prior notice, and was honored by the designation, he formally resigned this position. As a Member of the US Commission for the Preservation of America’s Heritage Abroad, a US federal government agency, Mr. Block is not permitted to serve on any body appointed by a foreign government.

Mr. Block attended the May 7, 2015 meeting in Vilnius only as an Observer on behalf of the US Commission.

Posted in Cemeteries and Mass Graves, Herbert Block, Herbert Block and Issues of Lithuanian Jewish Cemetery Preservation, Lithuania, Litvak Affairs, News & Views, Old Vilna Jewish Cemetery at Piramónt (in Šnipiškės / Shnípishok), Politics of Memory, US Commission for Preservation of the American Heritage Abroad | Tagged , , , , | Comments Off on Herbert Block’s Clarification on Participation in Lithuanian Government’s New Heritage Commission