Syrian Jewry: Jewish Strength from the Second Temple Era to Israeli Liberation; Featuring Adela Cojab| Season II: Episode 6

It was an honor to speak with Jewish activist Adela Cojab about the very deep history of Syrian Jews. A proud Diaspora community first emerged in Syria after the destruction of the First Temple.

After the Crusaders first invaded Israel, one of every three residents of Damascus were Jews. The oldest synagogue in the world is located in Syria and was built in 244 AD.

In follow-up waves, Jews fleeing from the Spanish Inquisition arrived to Syria.

Adela explains the differences between the two major Jewish communities that existed in Syria, which traditions are unique to Syrian Jews, what keeps the community even today beautifully intact, and how the Syrian Jews adapted to the fluctuations of history.

And in the context of Zionism and the Syrian Jews, we touched upon the most famous Israeli spy, Eli Cohen, himself a Syrian Jew, who grew up in Egypt.

Learn more in depth about all the above, plus some of Adela’s favorite Syrian-Jewish Shabbat foods, how Syrian Jews in both Israel and in the Diaspora keep their traditions alive, while modernizing in some aspects, and how venerated are rabbis within the Syrian Jewish community.