Friday, June 16, 2006

Jewish Police


Jewish Police Magen David

 Metal badge with a Star of David of a Jewish policeman in the Czestochowa ghetto, 1942

Public domain photo from the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum

 I saw this photo on Wikipedia and went to the source to find similar pictures, which were not Public domain, but supplied more info about this issue:

 A Jewish border policeman stands by a guardhouse on a street corner in the Lodz ghetto, with a Star of David on his chest, 1940 – 1944.

 A Jewish policeman helps two women move their belongings to new quarters in the Kovno ghetto. Under this picture I found an extensive explanation about the Kovno ghetto Jewish police force.  The German created it in July 1941.

 There were many more photos of Jewish policeman on other ghettos but they didn't have this Star of David badge on their chests…

What is the Star of David Blook all about?

My future blook will be a book based on this blog. In this blog the last article pushes all the others downwards; the order is chronological and after a while it looks arbitrary. In my future blook the order will be by subject, exactly like in a book; it will be easier to follow it since it will be much more organized, even though the same micro contents will appear here and there. Let's say that this future blook will be a preparation for a paper printed version.

The cover of this blook will convey the idea that I'm writing it from a personal and intimate secular Jewish point of view and not from a scientific point of view. This will help me write nonchalantly without the burden and boredom of scientific discipline.

The first chapter will deal with the problem of definition: the Star of David has many shapes, meanings and names. In order to find out what are we talking about there's a need to check what it is not and then to try to deal with what's left. It is not an Arab or a Christian hexagram; it is not the hexagram used by alchemy or witchcraft or occultists or pagans or in astrology etc. It is the name of a shape which has a meaning. Only when these three elements, name shape and meaning, appear together in the same context we know that we are dealing with the Jewish Star of David.

The next chapter will deal with the countless meanings and interpretations of the Star of David: it symbolizes the future powers of the Messiah; the Ingathering of the Israelites; the encampment of the Tribes in the desert; the unity of all the possible opposites; it is the protector of the human spirit which is in the center of the six directions; it relates to six possible ways of contact that a Hebrew man has with the land of Israel; it alludes to the Sukkah Guests; it shows where the elements of the plate for the Seder evening have to be placed; etc.

The next chapter will deal with the numerous theories about the earliest usage of the Star of David:

Israelite slaves in Egypt crystallized salt with Stars of David made from straw (David Bloch's theory); it was created not by human hand and was used as an ornament in the Menorah Tabernacle (Uri Ofir's theory); King David's shield was built in this form; King Solomon used it in his ring; Kabalists started using it in the 14th century, Zionists started using it in the 19th century etc. An exciting side project is to examine whether the lost tribes used the Star of David while in exile. In this chapter there will be original excerpts from Aran Patinkin film about the lost tribes.

This chapter will make no effort to show who is right and who is wrong – it will just collect as many theories as possible so that readers who are interested in the truth will have an opportunity to find it.

The next chapter will deal with the many Judaica products that use the Star of David like jewelry, charms, books, lampshades, pottery, vase, neckwear etc. This section of the blook will collect mainly photos, some of them sent to me by other Star of David enthusiasts. It will show how diverse can the human imagination be. The same goes for different other usages of the Star of David like: amulets, advertisements, as a banknote security feature, as a form of a cookie, etc.

The following chapters will be dedicated to the Star of David as a symbol of (1) Judaism, (2) Zionism and (3) Israel.

The Star of David appears on Jewish Wedding Contracts and it is used in the Sukkah – two main sources of joy. My theory is that it is meant to remind the guests that the temple in Jerusalem is still destroyed and a Rabbi from Ohr Somayach commented that he liked this theory. The Star of David appears on book covers in order to identify immediately that we are dealing with Judaism or Zionism or Israel. There's an equation Star of David= Judaism (or Zionism or Israel) in tattoos, in works of art, in synagogue ornamentation etc. In a special chapter the blook will deal with this equation through the eyes of Nazis (yellow badge) and anti-Semites (cartoons).

The last chapter will be a bibliography. It will enable diligent readers to follow my journey or to make a blook of their own…