The Hitler Haggadah

A Moroccan Jewish Piece from World War II

 

With translation, facsimile and background

 

Nissim Ben-Shimon

Hebrew: Avishai Bar-Asher

English: Adi and Jonnie Schnytzer

Printed 2021

Price: 70 nis

104 pages

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A first Hebrew translation of the Hitler Haggadah, a popular work written in Jewish-Arabic in Rabat, Morocco, circa 1943. The Hitler Haggadah is structured around the traditional Passover Haggadah, pouring into it the historical narrative of WW2 events in North Africa, the Jewish ordeal from the Moroccan-Jewish viewpoint, and a highly instructive firsthand account of the fate of Maghreb Jews in the terrible shadow of war.

Using a complex allegorical interpretation, the author transmuted the salvation of the Israelites from Egypt into the salvation of North African Jews from Nazi invasion by the Allied victory: “Therefore we must Thank Russia / Honor and Glorify Stalin / Praise England / Laud America / Exalt and extol the Gaullists and acclaim de Gaulle / Who revealed his might Through all these challenges / To our fathers and to us. / The Allies took us out of enslavement and gave us freedom. / We went from alarm to celebration / From confining blackouts to great light / And so we should say to them Hallelujah!”.

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Bilingual edition, Hebrew-English, with a facsimile of the original edition, and two scholarly essays on the Haggadah and the background for its authorship.

 

Also printed in a special edition of 148 copies, hardbound, as a gift to the friends of Kedem Auction House, Jerusalem. 25 copies were hand-bound by Daniel Blum.