Thursday, December 29, 2011


The letters below were published in the Jerusalem Post Magazine section on Dec 9 and Dec 23, 2011, respectively

With regard to "Clinging to Judaism" (Diaspora, 25/11/11) about the remaining "Chueta" or Bnei Anusim of Mallorca, I would like to draw your readers' attention to the new International Institute for the Study of Secret Jews (Anusim) recently founded at Netanya Academic College (NAC). It so happens that the person featured in the "Questionnaire" section of the same issue is Prof. Zvi Arad, President of NAC, who was instrumental in bringing the Institute into existence.

The Institute is based on the Casa Shalom Insititute for Marrano-Anusim Studies which moved from Gan Yavne to NAC this year, and includes an excellent library on this subject collected over nearly 40 years by Gloria Mound and her late husband Leslie. We urge anyone interested in this subject to either visit the library at NAC or to contact us via the Institute's Facebook page.

I would also like to point out that Gloria Mound made a pioneering study of the Bnei Anusim of the Balearic Islands starting in the 1970's. Some of the Bnei Anusim have documentation and can still claim to be Jews and a few have been recognized as such by rabbinic authorities.


Jack Cohen
Board Member
Intl. Inst. for Study of Secret Jews (Anusim)
Netanya Academic College


In relation to the article on WWI German General Erich von Falkenhayn, who supposedly saved the Jewish population of Palestine from being massacred like the Armenians (“The irony of it all”, Dec 9, 2011), I would like to mention his even more amazing successor who was in command of the Turkish Army in Palestine that opposed British Gen. Allenby in WWI, German General Otto Liman von Sanders (1855-1929) who was partly Jewish!

The General's name is rather odd, his original family name was Liman. He was an Anglophile, and so when he was raised to the peerage by the Kaiser, he added the English name "Sanders" to the aristocratic "von". However, he was opposed by many Prussian Generals, who used his Jewish ancestry against him. So the German Chief of Staff in 1913 sent him to Turkey where he was made head of the German military mission to Constantinople to reorganize the army of the Ottoman Empire. In WWI, Liman commanded Turkish forces in the Gallipolli campaign (1915-16). One of the Turkish officers he promoted was Kemal Ataturk, the founder of modern Turkey.

Gen. Allenby outmaneuvered the Turks in Palestine in WWI, he outflanked the Turkish defenders in Gaza by capturing Beersheva in 1917, forcing the Turks to withdraw up the coast. As a result, Gen von Falkenhayn was replaced by von Sanders, who was put in charge of the Turkish forces in 1918, but it was too late. Allenby's forces won the crucial battle of Megiddo in Oct 1918, thus defeating the Turks and capturing all of Palestine. Liman von Sanders was captured in Istanbul and returned to Germany where he retired and wrote his memoirs.

Jack Cohen


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