A-menorah-defies-the-Nazi-flag-1931-e1543857265927

In 1932,  the Nazi flag waved on a cold December night, when the light of the Menorah defied the darkness of hatred.

It was the eighth night of Chanukah in 1932 in the town of Kiel in Germany, where about 500 Jews lived. Rabbi Akiva Posner was lighting the last Hanukkah candle in his house, in front of the Nazi Party barracks in the city, minutes before the entry of Shabbat. 

Rabbi Posner’s wife, Rachel, ran and took a picture of the Menorah in front of the Nazi building. Then, she wrote in the back of the photo: Chanukah 5692 (1932) “Death to Judah” So the flag says “Judah will live forever” So the light answers

After Rabbi Posner publicized a protest letter in the local press expressing indignation at the posters that had appeared in the city:  “Entrance to Jews Forbidden”, he was summoned by the chairman of the local branch of the Nazi party to participate in a public debate. The event took place under heavy police guard and was reported by the local press.The 

When the tension and violence in the city intensified, the Rabbi responded to the pleas of his community to flee with his wife Rachel and their three children and make their way to Eretz Israel. Before their departure, Rabbi Posner was able to convince many of his congregants to leave as well and indeed most managed to leave for Eretz Israel or the United States. The Posner family left Germany in 1933 and arrived in Eretz Israel in 1934.

Currently the original photo and chandelier are on display at the Yad Vashem Holocaust Museum in Jerusalem. Each year the museum returns the menorah to the descendants of the rabbi who continue to use it every Hanukkah.

H/T Yad Vashem