Cuba

As Florida Republicans make their choice for a presidential nominee today, some will be thinking of -- and perhaps basing their votes on -- US policy toward Cuba.

Although we focus primarily on North American Jewry, BJPA has a handful of resources related to Cuba:

The Jewish Immigrant in Cuba (1926)

Jewish Social Work in Cuba (1928)

Exodus 1939, from Hungary to Cuba (1978):
          Part 1
          Part 2

The Miracle of Cuba: 50 Years After the Revolution, Cuba is Experiencing a Real Rebirth of Jewish Life (2008)

Jewish Life in Cuba Today

Excerpts from The Miracle of Cuba:

"While more than 15,000 Jews lived in Cuba before the revolution, there are only approximately 1,500 today, and it is “a permanent challenge that often the most active members of the community emigrate to Israel,” explains Fernando Lapiduz, who is presently working for the Joint as a cantor and social worker in Cuba...

...In addition to the three synagogues, there are two Jewish cemeteries, one Ashkenazi and one Sephardi, in Guanabacoa, at the edge of Havana. Even though visitors rarely manage to find their way here, the Joint Distribution Committee pays the wages of cemetery custodians. A few tombs that have been broken open suggest the reason why. Afro-Cuban adherents of Palo Mayombe, a mixture of the Central African Bantu culture, Santeria, and Spanish Catholicism, believe that Jewish bones possess magical powers because they belong to unbaptized souls, and therefore bones were being stolen from the cemetery on a regular basis.

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