Rabbi David H. Lincoln   Ukrainian Weekly   30October94   A New York rabbi's response
Rabbi David H. Lincoln of the Park Avenue Synagogue in New York was among the first to object to the 60 Minutes broadcast, The Ugly Face of Freedom of 23-Oct-1994.  Rabbi Lincoln has had a longstanding interest in Ukraine, inherited from his father, as is explained in the discussion of The Ukrainian Question in 1935.

Everything below is from the Ukrainian Weekly.

External link to Ukrainian Weekly web site

A New York rabbi's response

Following is the text of a letter sent on October 25 to the CBS program "60 Minutes" by Rabbi David H. Lincoln of the Park Avenue Synagogue.  The letter is reprinted here with the permission of Rabbi Lincoln, who last year traveled to western Ukraine.

Park Avenue Synagogue
50 East 87 Street
New York, N.Y. 10125

Mr. Jeffrey Fager, Producer
CBS "60 Minutes"
524 West 57th Street
New York, NY 10019

Dear Sir:

I feel that your program on Lviv and Ukrainians was most unfair.

To show boy scouts and say they are Nazis marching, to translate "Zhyd" as kike (in western Ukraine Zhyd is the word for Jew), to infer that the word for nation "natsiya" might mean Nazi etc., etc. is most upsetting to many of us who know today's Ukraine.

It really is time for us to enjoy the resurgence of Jewish life in Ukraine after the horrors of the German occupation and communism, and to appreciate the heroic efforts of the Ukrainian people and government to assist the Jewish community in all their endeavors.

The history of Jewish-Ukrainian relations often tragic is a complicated one, but you would have done well to have informed the public of the better aspects of those contacts.  For instance, Ukraine was the sole independent nation that had complete Jewish national autonomy (1917) and had Yiddish-speaking ministers in the government representing the rights of minorities.

Today, when Russian Jews send their children to Ukraine for safe keeping in times of danger, no good can come from distortions such as those portrayed in your program.

Yours faithfully,
Rabbi David H. Lincoln