All photos are by Life Magazine photographer Jerry Cooke and were taken in Moscow in the spring of 1959. Glorious post-Stalin days, I presume.....
"ניטא היינט קיין פלייש, מיין ליבער פרוי"
I was quite taken aback by Reb UD's words, commenting on Circus Tent א ציג מיט זיבן ציגאלאך that Soviet children had it as good as no other children living elsewhere in free societies, "The happiest Children on Earth," as he so eloquently put it. He accused me of being ignorant about the Soviet Union, me being "born in the back seat of a Lexus," and that the infamous bread lines only started in the 80's. DeHaynu, that for 60 plus years all was well in the Soviet Union, save for the executions and the gulags, I guess. And after 30 years they figured out how to feed all those people, until something happened in the 80s. nu, nu. You guys always accuse me of suffering from Stockholm Syndrome, as if I was a prisoner in a society I was "kidnapped" to and learned to like my "captors" since I had no choice and could not leave. Beside for the fact that most of you wouldn't recognize Stockholm Syndrome if it smacked you in the face; why would you even say something like that when it could be so easily said about every frum man and woman, that they too want to join society but are imprisoned by their beliefs and by society?! Sure, you'll SAY that you either can leave if you so wish, or have no desire to, but maybe you too are suffering from the dreaded disease?
מנינים אזוי ווי אין מונקאטש און שומרי שבת........ וד"ל
So, is it safe to assume that Mr. UD is the poster child for the dreaded syndrome, since he so yearns for his childhood in the CCCP? Or is it the natural nostalgia that people have for their homeland no matter where they come from? We can infer from his words that he didn't have it so hard there, and I would also think that he grew up at the time when things began to change, so his basic needs may have been taken care of. Hence, all was well for khaver UD in the Red Heaven. Then again, maybe we were lied by both the American and Lubavitch propaganda machine who had it in their best interest to defame the great USSR so that they not look so bad. Maybe all those JEP tapes crying for Nikolai who was stuck in Russia were just marketing ploys that were used to collect money for Russian Jews that really didn't need it. Maybe all those Olomeinu articles that chronicled the hardships of the רושיסע אידן were nothing but fairy tales. Maybe Shlomo Carlebach and his crying for Russian Jewry behind the Iron Curtain was nothing but a show by a Lubavitch-trained entertainer who could spin a tall tale like nobody's business.
!שיעורי תורה פונקט ווי אין בני ברק
Stranger things have happened, my friends, I've learned lots of new ideas, such as me not being part of Judaism. Sucas as despite numerous people recounting stories they heard from RYBS about the Rebbe in Berlin they only passed each other on the street, sort of like me and my Chinese neighbors down the block. So maybe this is one more step in the re-education of Hirshel Tzig, the Tsap who still has lots to learn. Maybe we'll see the idea of בא ללמד ונמצא למד, come to life here compliments of UD and the others here who see things so differently than I do. After all, we have photographic evidence compliments of LIFE magazine that Jews could learn, daven and even buy Kosher meat if they so pleased! Forget about Stockholm Syndrome, I'm just confused now. How silly of those Lubavitchers and Novardokers and Breslovers to want to leave Russia at any cost, if only they would've known what we know now they would never have left the Motherland and come to the abyss we know as these United States! In Russia they would live Baalebatish, like the book we showed says. Ok, I'll stop repeating myself now. I need a beer, and I have just what I need in the fridge. A Blue Moon bottle, Wheat Ale, with an OU to boot. I know it can't compare to Soviet Beer, but that's all I got for now.