Posts by Deborah Oleshansky

Poland Mission Reflections: People, Politics and Propaganda

In early May I had the honor of joining a small delegation from Nashville traveling to Poland to witness and assist in relief efforts for Ukrainian refugees. At that time, Poland was assisting over two million refugees fleeing violence and mayhem caused by the unprovoked Russian invasion of…

Never Again

Shortly after the end of World War II, Holocaust survivors began using the term, “Never Again” as a rallying cry to bring world attention to the unprecedented horror they had witnessed, and against all odds, survived. The phrase continues to be used both particularly by the Jews to dema…

The Path to Freedom

Nashville is becoming home to several hundred Afghan allies, as part of a national effort to resettle thousands of evacuees from Afghanistan. In a Jewish community wide effort, we have funded and are committed to help settle and acculturate three families. Working with the sponsorship organ…

Combatting Antisemitism with Bipartisan Efforts

In August 2017, many of us watched in horror as people with tiki torches chanting, “Jews will not replace us,” marched through Charlottesville, VA at the Unite the Right Rally.  In October 2017, the group Integrity First for America (IFA) filed a lawsuit against the organizers o…

Shine a Light

At the beginning of the 2021-22 school year, The Jewish Federation and Jewish Foundation of Nashville and Middle Tennessee launched a local antisemitism reporting form in an ongoing effort to assist families and community members in addressing and responding to incidents of antisemiti…

Welcoming the Stranger

Faith-based organizations are often among the first responders to help refugees fleeing their home during war and political upheaval, and the current crisis in Afghanistan is no exception.  Perhaps it is because of the over 30 references in the Torah, also referred to as the Old Testament i…

Thou Shalt not Hate

At the beginning of the 2021-22 school year, we launched a tool to help community members report local incidents of antisemitism, primarily designed for use by parents and students experiencing issues of antisemitism in school settings. This form, created through the efforts of JCRC mem…

Moving Forward in Uncertainty

When President Trump launched Operation Warp Speed in May 2020, many breathed a tentative sigh of relief knowing that a safe, effective vaccine was our best hope in the battle against the COVID-19 virus, which had affected every aspect of our lives. Schools and businesses closed, travel all …

Jewish Pride and Unity: Stronger together

National and international headlines continue to report far too many stories about antisemitic incidents and attacks.  Locally we have been relatively fortunate so far, but we are not immune from these concerns.  The inherent danger of this Jew hating monster cannot be underest…

Understanding the Progressive Movement and Israel

The recent surge of antisemitic attacks, anti-Israel rhetoric, and violence in Israel and Gaza leaves many Jews feeling vulnerable, uncertain, and even in fear for personal safety.  Synagogues have been vandalized and for the first time in their lives, some American Jews are afra…

Pulling together in the face of danger

Last month, the Community Relations Committee of the Jewish Federation and Jewish Foundation of Nashville and Middle Tennessee and Congregation Micah sponsored a program with writer Bari Weiss to discuss antisemitism across America. Professor Shaul Kelner, of Vanderbilt University, was a mas…