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BACK TO THE ROOTS

From Jerusalem Post

Known more for his culinary skills than for his pedigree, Gil Hovav, a celebrity food writer and television personality, will tomorrow, September 11, lead a tour of Limmud FSU Belarus participants to Luzhky, Belarus. This was the hometown of his great-grandfather Eliezer Ben-Yehuda, the reviver of Hebrew as a spoken language.

During the tour, a memorial plaque at the site of Ben-Yehuda’s childhood home will be unveiled.
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Photo: JPost
Hovav generally focuses on his Yemenite roots from the other side of his family, although he has written a book about Ben-Yehuda. His father was Moshe Hovav, of the most eminent Israeli radio broadcasters.

Some 600 Jews with roots in the former Soviet Union have converged on Belarus – with some 70,000 Jews currently living in the country – for yet another Limmud festival of Jewish learning. It will be held in Vitebsk, the hometown of renowned Jewish artist Marc Chagall; among the speakers is Israel’s Ambassador to Belarus Yosef Shagal.

The extraordinarily comprehensive program is packed with numerous aspects of Jewish history, culture, tradition and religion.

In addition to lectures, workshops, roundtable discussions, music and drama, there is also a wide range of cultural events.

Participants who remain in the country after the conclusion of Limmud FSU Belarus on Sunday, will on Monday, September 15, be able to visit a special memorial photo exhibition honoring late prime minister Ariel Sharon at the National History Museum in the capital city of Minsk, from where Sharon’s parents emigrated to the Land of Israel. The memorial will be held in collaboration with the Belarusan government, the Israel Embassy and the local Jewish community.
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Gilad Sharon, who wrote a book about his father, will be participating as will Israel Maimon, who served as cabinet secretary under Sharon; along with Marit Danon, who was executive secretary in the Prime Minister’s Office during the Sharon administration.