• Meyer Grunberg

Hebron Jews Attacked by Arabs in Pogrom, 1929

Updated: Dec 4, 2020

On This Day in Jewish History: August 23rd, 1929

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#onthisday, 1929, the Jews of the ancient Jewish city of Hebron were attacked by neighboring Arab residents in an organized pogrom. 67 Jews would lay dead as homes and synagogues were outright destroyed in what would be known as The Hebron Massacre.

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Jews have had a presence in Hebron since the times of King David and prior to the 1920s, lived mostly in peace with their Arab neighbors.

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The summer of 1929 witnessed a high influx of Jewish immigrants to British-occupied Palestine. The Mufti of Jerusalem, Haj Amin al Husseini - a soon to be ally of Hitler (image #2) - began inciting riots in response to the increased Jewish presence in the region.

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The city of Hebron had been peaceful while tensions were felt beneath the surface.

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The Jews of Hebron at the time were mostly of Sephardic descent, spoke Arabic, and got along with their Arab neighbors. Ashkenazi immigrants began arriving in the mid to late 1800s - a reality that the Mufti took issue with.

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On the afternoon of August 23rd, 1929, Arab youths began throwing rocks at yeshiva students as they strolled by - the first casualty would be Shmuel Rosenholtz.

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The next day, Shabbat morning, Arabs appeared in mobs armed with knives, clubs, and axes at the Jewish quarter with murderous intentions. By the end of the day, 67 Jews were dead, synagogues and homes destroyed - the community was left scrambling for safety.

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The massacre instigated coordinated violence throughout the region, led by the Mufti, where 133 Jews and 110 Arabs would be killed, mostly by the occupying British forces in an attempt to quell violence they had no business being a part of.

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This tragic and unfortunate event highlights the fact that anti-Jewish sentiment in the region had little do with Zionism or Israel (being that it didn't exist yet) and more to do with baseless Jewish-hatred.

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Text Source: https://www.jewishvirtuallibrary.org/the-hebron-massacre-of-1929

Image Source: https://s22592.pcdn.co/wp-content/uploads/2019/08/hebron.jpg


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