November 01, 2007

Today in Jewish History - Cheshvan 20

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Yahrtzeit of Hannah Szenes (1921-1944), a young Israeli woman who volunteered to parachute behind Nazi lines on behalf of the British Army. She spent three months in Yugoslavia working with partisan resistance fighters, but was caught when she attempted to cross the border into Hungary. She was tortured for several months, but refused to divulge any information. Szenes became a symbol of idealism and self-sacrifice, an image strengthened by the stirring set of poems she left behind. She was executed by firing squad in Budapest, and her remains were later brought to Israel.