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Daily Briefing Apr 18: On Holocaust Remembrance Day, politics seep into sacred space

Zman Yisrael editor Biranit Goren unpacks what is happening in Labor; health reporter Renee Ghert-Zand on MDA tracing services and a grassroots effort to shine up stumbling stones

Welcome to The Times of Israel’s Daily Briefing, your 15-minute audio update on what’s happening in Israel, the Middle East and the Jewish world, from Sunday through Thursday.

Zman Yisrael editor Biranit Goren and health reporter Renee Ghert-Zand join host Amanda Borschel-Dan on this episode marking Yom Hashoah, Israel’s National Holocaust Remembrance Day.

Even as President Isaac Herzog called for the Israeli people to put aside their differences over the judicial overhaul last night during the official ceremony marking Yom Hashoah at Yad Vashem, in Tel Aviv MK Boaz Bismuth of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s Likud party was forced to leave a ceremony at a synagogue after participants heckled him and threatened violence. Why does this worry Goren ahead of next week’s Memorial Day ceremonies?

In the year since 2022’s Yom Hashoah, the Tracing Services at Magen David Adom — the Israeli branch of the International Red Cross — has received 150 requests for help in locating relatives and renewing family ties. Over the years, it has aided in the reunion of hundreds of relatives, including six siblings. How does it go about this work, eight decades after World War II?

Israel’s Labor party suffered a crushing blow in the November elections and now the four-seat party seems to be in disarray. This week, it dropped out of the judicial overhaul negotiation talks at the President’s Residence and yesterday we learned that its few MKs are forcing leader Merav Michaeli to get their approval for her decisions. What’s happening here?

Finally, we hear about a European grassroots effort in which several young leaders are taking the initiative and organizing coexistence clean-up projects for the thousands of Stolpersteine, or stumbling blocks, that are embedded in sidewalks all over Europe.

Discussed articles include:

Israel grinds to a halt as siren wails to commemorate 6 million Holocaust victims

As Israel remembers Holocaust, Herzog says commemoration must be ‘above all dispute’

Likud MK shouted down by anti-coalition hecklers at Holocaust Remembrance Day event

Magen David Adom aids Shoah survivors seeking lost relatives

Labor MKs seek to replace leader Michaeli, claim party’s future depends on it

Citing ‘deals in the dark,’ Labor party quits judicial overhaul talks with president

In grassroots effort, young Europeans clean ‘stumbling stones’ to gleam like beacons

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