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Ha'apalah
(Heb. Clandestine Immigration) The effort to smuggle Holocaust survivors to the British Mandate of Palestine right before the establishment of the State of Israel. Also, known as Aliyah Bet (Heb. secondary immigration), many foreign nations aided the Jewish refugees in their efforts to reach Israel by land or sea, while others simply turned a blind eye to their activities.
Ha'aretz
(Heb. The Land) Leading Israeli daily newspaper.
Ha'avara
(Heb. The Transfer) A company for the transfer of Jewish property from Nazi Germany to Palestine, established in Tel Aviv in August 1933.
Ha'Bimah
(Heb. The Stage) Israel's national theater.
Habonim Dror
(Heb. Builders of freedom) Socialist-Zionist pioneering youth movement formed by the merger of the Habonim and Dror youth movements in 1982.
Hachnasat Orechim
Welcoming of the guests to one's home.
Ha'chomah
(Heb. The Wall) Publication of extreme haredi group Neturei Karta.
Hachsharah
Hebrew term for agricultural and manual labor training facilities in Germany from 1933-1939 where Jewish youth prepared for emigration to Palestine.
Hadassah
(Heb. Myrtle, also the Hebrew name of the biblical figure Esther) The world's largest women's organization, Hadassah is a American-Women's Zionist organization founded in 1912. In addition to it's pro-Israel activities (which include fund raising and managing Young Judea, Hadassah's pluralistic Zionist youth movement), Hadassah also runs several hospitals in Israel.
Hadith
Sayings or deeds ascribed to the Prophet Muhammad. In the first centuries after Muhammad's death, Islamic scholars establuished a ranking system for teh reliability fo each reported hadith. However, there continues to be disagreement over the validity of various hadith. For Sunnies, hadith contained in the volumes Sahih al-Bukhari and Sahih Muslim are the most widely referenced, although other compilations exist. Shia Muslims gavor hadith with a chain of transmission through the family of Ali, the son-in-law of Muhammad.
Ha'edah
(Heb. The Faith) Publication of Edah Haredit.
Ha'emek Davar
Torah commentary by Naphtali Zvi Yehudah Berlin (1817-1893); Lithuania.
Häftlingspersonalbogen
(Ger.) Prisoner registration forms at the Nazi concentration camps.
Haftorah
(Heb. Parting) Selected section from the biblical books of the Prophets (Nevi'im) which is traditionally recited after the Torah reading on the Sabbath or on a festival. The Haftorah is read to a different tune than the Torah and is usually thematically related to the Torah reading.
Haganah
(Heb. Defense) Underground Jewish defense organization founded during the period of the British Mandate. After the declaration of the State of Israel it formally merged with other underground forces to become the the Israel Defense Forces (Tzva Haganah L'yisrael).
Hagbah
(Heb. Lifting) The act and honor of lifting the Torah after it is read to the congregation.
Haggada(h)
(Heb. Narration) Liturgical work which outlines the order of the Passover meal (seder). It can also refer to a collection of talmudic stories (see aggadah).
Haimish
(Yid.) Comfortable, informal, cozy.
Ha'kibbutz Ha'meuchad
(Heb. The United Kibbutz) A settlement kibbutz movement closely affiliated with the Achdut Ha'avodah party.
Ha-K'tav V'ha-Kabbalah
(Heb. The Written and the Mystical [Kabbalah]) Torah commentary by Yaakov Zvi Mecklenburg (1785-1865); Prussia.
Halacha/Halachah/Halakha
(Heb. The Path). Jewish law governing everyday life recorded and expounded in the Talmud.
Halacha l'maaseh
(Heb. Practical Halachah) Practical (rather than theoretical) matters of Jewish law.
Halachot G'dolot
(Heb. Grand Halachot) A rabbinic work summarizing various halachot, or issues of Jewish law; probably composed in Babylonia in the 8th or 9th centuries.
Halbanat Panim
(Heb. Whitening the Face).The concept that causing someone public embarrassment to the point where their face turns white is equivalent in some way to killing them (or their soul).
Halevai
(Heb.) If only, I wish.
Halitzah/Chalitza
(Heb.) A ceremony related to the Jewish Levirate law of marriage, which frees the widow to marry someone other than her husband's brother. In this ceremony the widow removes a shoe from her brother-in-law's foot, which is symbolic of removing his possessive right over her. See also levirate marriage (see Deut. 25:9-10).
Halutz/Chalutz
(Heb. Pioneer, Bibl. Girded One ) Pioneer, especially in agriculture, in Palestine.
Ha'machaneh Ha'charedi
(Heb. The Haredi Camp) Weekly paper of the Belzer hasidim.
Haman
The villain in the story of Purim.
Hamas
(Arab. acronym for Islamic Resistance Movement) A Palestinian Islamic fundamentalist militant organization and political party. Hamas organizes and funds terrorist attacks against Israel, is ideologically opposed to any Jewish settlement in Israel, and rejects the Oslo Accords. Hamas operated as an opposition party to the dominant Fatah party for most of it's existence, until being elected the ruling party of the Palestinian Authority in 2006.
Hamashbir Hamerkazi
The main wholesale supplier for consumers' cooperatives and labor settlements in Israel, founded (as Hamashbir) in 1916.
Hamentaschen
(Yid. Haman's Pockets). Triangular, fruit-filled cookies traditionally served or given as gifts during Purim.
Hamodia
(Heb. The Informer) A daily haredi newspaper and organ of Agudat Israel.
Hamtana
(Heb. Waiting) Israeli military term referring to the period before or after mobilization; it is most often used to describe the weeks of waiting right before the 1967 Six Day War.
Hananel ben Hushiel
11th century talmudic commentator; Tunisia
Ha-Olam Ha-Zeh-Koach Hadash
(Heb. This World-New Strength) Israeli political party founded in 1965.
Ha-Oved Ha-Dali
A religious workers faction in the Histadrut founded in 1943.
Ha-Oved Ha-Tzioni
(Heb. The Zionist Worker) Israeli labor movement founded as a Histadrut faction in 1935.
Ha-Po'el Ha-Mizrachi
(Heb. The Eastern Worker) Religious pioneering and labor movement in Eretz Israel, founded in 1922.
Ha-Po'el Ha-Tzair
(Heb. The Young Worker) Non-Marxist Zionist movement founded by A.D. Gordon during the early twentieth century.
Haram Al-Sharif
(Heb. Noble Sanctuary) Refers to the area that the Dome of the Rock and the Al-Aqsa Mosque are located in Jerusalem where the Jewish Temple once stood.
Hardal/Chardal
(Heb. acronym Haredi le'umi) Ultra-Orthodox Israeli nationalists; also means "mustard."
Haredi/Charedi
(Heb. Shaker) Ultra-Orthodox Jews, so called by the backwards and forwards motions they make when praying. The term is also a scriptural reference to a verse describing "the righteous person who fears the word of God". Haredim adhere strictly to traditional form of dress, a strict interpretation of Jewish law, rejection of secular culture, and an ambivalent attitude toward the present State of Israel. Formerly a term for any Orthodox Jew, currently it means an “ultra-Orthodox” Jew. Internally, Haredim are broadly divided between hasidim and misnagdim (q.v.)
HASAG
(Hugo Schneider Aktiengesellschaft-Metalwarenfabrik, Leipzig), one of the privately owned German industrial companies that used concentration camp prisoners to manufacture armaments. HASAG was the third largest after I.G. Farben and the Hermann Goring Werke.
Ha'Shachar
(Heb. The Dawn) Nineteenth-century Hebrew literary journal in Russia.
Hashem
(Heb. The Name) Commonly used to refer to God in order to avoid using his name in vain and transgress the third commandment.
Hashgacha
(Heb. Supervision) Most often used in terms of kashrut/dietary laws, although it can also refer to spiritual or moral supervision as in a yeshiva or dormitory.
Hashomer
(Heb. The Guard) Active from 1909 till the formation of the Haganah in 1920, Hashomer was an association of Jewish guards who defended Jewish settlements during the British Mandate.
Ha-Shomer Ha-Tza'ir
(The Young Guardsman) Socialist-Zionist pioneering youth movement founded in 1913.
Hasidim/Chassidim
(Heb. Pious ones). The term may refer to Jews in various periods: (1) a group that resisted the policies of Antiochus Epiphanes in the 2nd century B.C.E. at the start of the Maccabean revolt; (2) pietists in the 13th century; (3) followers of the Hasidic movement founded in the first half of the 18th century by Israel Baal Shem Tov.
Haskalah
(Heb. Enlightenment) Jewish rationalistic “enlightenment” in 18th and 19th century Europe. (See also maskilim, Mendelson, reform).
Hasmonean Revolt
(167-164 BCE) -the revolt against the Seleucide Greeks ruling the land of Israel. The revolt was prompted by the ban on practicing the Jewish religion and the desecration of the Temple. It was led by Matthatias of the priestly Hasmonean family and later by his five sons, the most prominent warrior of them Judah the Maccabee. In 164 the rebels liberated Jerusalem and purified the Temple.
Hasmoneans
Descendants of Hashmon, a Jewish family that included the Maccabees and the high priests and kings who ruled Judea from 142 to 63 B.C.E.
Hatam Sofer (1762-1839)
Moses Sofer, who became best known by the title of his book of legal opinions that he authored; leading figure of Hungarian ultra-Orthodoxy.
Hatikvah
(Heb. The Hope) National anthem of Israel. The words were written by Naftali Herz Imber (about 1870). The melody is a folk song based on a tune which is known in many European countries in various forms.
Ha-Tzofeh
(The Observer) Newspaper of the National Religious Party.
Ha'umot Ha'meuhadot
(Heb.) United Nations. (Often referred to by its Hebrew acronym UM).
Havdalah
(Heb. Distinction) Jewish ceremony conducted using wine, spices, and candles to mark the conclusion of the Sabbath.
Haycraft Commission
British commission formed in 1921 to investigate the cause of recent violence in The British Mandate of Palestine. Despite Jewish claims that the local Arab population was acting in response to fears of British rule, the British concluded that the attacks were carried out because of opposition to Jewish immigration.
Hayyim (ben Isaac) of Volozhin (1749-1821)
Disciple of the Vilna Gaon; a leader of the Mitnagg'dim (anti-Hasidim); founder of the Volozhin yeshiva; Lithuania.
Hazzan
See cantor.
Heaven
A term used variously to designate such locations as the abode of a deity, or the place where those favored by God will ultimately arrive, or an area of (spiritual) activity above the material earth or the place where spiritual/ideal realities abide.
Hebrew
(Heb. To Cross Over). The Israelite nation and language.
Hebron Massacre (1929)
Following an outbreak of violence in Jerusalem in 1929, riots spread across all of British Mandatory Palestine and lasted for months. In the ancient Jewish city of Hebron, 64 unarmed Jewish men, women, and children were slaughtered on August 24 and the entire Jewish population of Hebron fled before returning in 1967 after the Six Day War.
Hebron Massacre (1994)
On February 25, 1994 Baruch Goldstein entered a mosque located in part of the Tomb of the Patriarchs in Hebron and opened fire, killing 29 Arabs and wounding over 100 others. He was later subdued and killed by people on the scene.
Hebron Protocol (1997)
Agreement between Israeli Prime Minster Binyamin Netanyahu and Palestinian Authority Chairman Yasser Arafat signed on January 15, 1997 with U.S. mediator Dennis Ross present. The agreement called for immediate Israeli withdrawal from 80% of the city of Hebron and staged withdrawal from other rural areas of the West Bank. The Hebron Protocol marked the first peace agreement signed between the Likud government and the Palestinian leadership.
He-Chalutz
An association of Jewish youth whose aim was to train its members to settle on the land in Eretz Israel.
Heimwehr
German home defense force during World War II.
Heksher
(Heb.) Kosher certification.
Hell
Place of punishment for the departed dead who do not attain heaven, especially in Christian eschatology. (See also sheol).
Hellenism/Hellinistic Period
(Gre. Greekish) Civilization that spread from Greece through much of the ancient world from 333 (Alexander the Great) to 76 (dominance of Rome) B.C.E. After Alexander the Great conquered the Land of Israel, Jewish theocracy remained for a while until the practice of Judaism was prohibited, causing the Hasmonean Revolt.
Heresy
(Gre. To Choose). See minim, heterodox, orthodoxy.
Heretic, Heretical
See heterodox, orthodox.
Hermeneutics
(Gre. Interpretations) Principles of interpretation, typically used in reference to biblical exegesis.
Herod
The Second Testament of the Christian Bible mentions four (“kings” through the grace of Rome) by that name: 1) Herod the Great, a Judaized (or proselytized) Idumaen, ruled Judea tyrannically with Roman backing. He died 4 BCE, around the time Jesus was born (Matthew 2:1 ff.). He is said to have ordered the murder of the infants in Bethlehem. 2) Herod Antipas was the second son of Herod the Great (Matthew 14:1; Luke 3:1). He killed John the Baptist (Mark 6:14 ff.). 3) Herod Agrippa I, was a grandson of Herod the Great. He is mentioned in Acts 12:1ff. 4) Herod Agrippa II was a son of Agrippa I. He is mentioned in the passage Acts 25:13 - 26:32 (Paul defending himself against accusations of some fellow Jews).
Herodian
Period of Jewish history from 30 B.C.E.-70 C.E.
Herrenvolk
(Heb. Master Race) Nazi term for pureblooded Aryan Germans whom they believed to be the supreme race of human beings.
Herum
(Heb.) Emergency
Herut
(Heb. Freedom) Revisionist-Zionist political party led by Menachem Begin until it merged to become the Liked in 1988.
Herzl, Theodor (1860-1904)
Father of the modern Zionist movement and founder of the World Zionist Organization. Although modern immigration and settlement in Israel predate Herzl's activities, his efforts to organize the Zionists of the world and define a broad ideology led him to be considered the visionary who laid the foundation for the establishment of the State of Israel.
Heschel, Abraham Joshua (1907-1972)
Rabbi, theologian, Jewish Theological Seminary faculty member, author, and scion of a distinguished Hasidic dynasty.
Hesder Yeshiva
A yeshiva (school of Jewish study) which combines talmudic studies with military service.
Hess, Rudolf (1894-1987)
Deputy and close associate of Hitler from the earliest days of the Nazi movement. On May 10, 1941, he flew alone from Augsburg and parachuted, landing in Scotland where he was promptly arrested. The purpose of his flight has never become clear. He probably wanted to persuade the British to make peace with Hitler as soon as he attacked the Soviet Union. Hitler promptly declared him insane. Hess was tried at Nuremberg, found guilty, and sentenced to life imprisonment. He was the only prisoner in Spandau Prison until he apparently committed suicide in 1987.
Heter
(Heb.) Permission (usually a rabbinic ruling that permits something).
Heterodox
(Gre. Other Opinioned) Refers to opinions or positions that differ from what is considered “orthodox” or “traditional” at the time. A less judgmental term than “heretical,” but with similar import.
Hevrat ha-Ovdim
(Heb. Society of Workers) Umbrella organization of all the cooperative and independent economic enterprises of the Histadrut; founded in 1928.
Heydrich, Reinhard (1904-1942)
Chief of the Reich security Main Office. In 1933-1934, he became head of the political police (Gestapo) and later of the criminal police (Kripo). He combined Gestapo and Kripo into the Security Police (SIPO). In 1939, Heydrich combined the SD and SIPO into the Reich Security Main Office. He organized the Einsatzgruppen which systematically murdered Jews in occupied Russia during 1941-1942. In 1941, he was asked by G"ring to implement a “Final Solution to the Jewish Question.” During the same year he was appointed protector of Bohemia and Moravia. In January 1942, he presided over the Wannsee conference, an meeting to coordinate the “Final Solution.” On May 29, 1942, he was assassinated by Czech partisans who parachuted in from England. (For consequences of this assassination, see Lidice).
Hezbollah (Party of God)
(Arab. Party of God) Iranian and Syrian-backed Islamic fundamentalist terrorist organization, based in predominantly Shi'ite areas of southern Lebanon, that has launched numerous attacks on Israeli soldiers and civilians. Inspired by the Iranian Revolution of 1979, in 1982, Sheikh Mohammed Hussein Fadlallah broke away from Amal militia to form Hezbollah.
Hibbat Tzion/Chovevei Zion
(Heb. Lovers of Zion) Early Zionist organization founded in Eastern Europe during the early 1880's which advocated immigration to Israel. It's members helped found some of the oldest towns of modern Israel, including: Rishon L'tzion, Rosh Pina, and Zichron Ya'akov.
Hiddur Mitzvah
(Heb/Yid. Beautifying the Mitzvah) Concept of going beyond the bare requirements of a mitzvah by using only the finest quality items to carry it out.
High Holy Days
(Heb. Yamim Nora'im) Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur and frequently used to refer to the 10-day period between them, as well.
Hillel
Often referred to in English as "Hillel the Elder", he was a great talmudic sage who lived during the last few years before the Common Era. Known for his kindness and elaboration on the "golden rule". Hillel is also the name of an international Jewish organization dedicated to reaching out to young Jews on college campuses.
Hiloni
(Heb.) Secular Jews in Israel.
Hillul Hashem/Chillul Hashem
(Heb. Desecration of the Divine Name) Jewish concept that performing a dishonorable act or one that is against Jewish teachings while in public brings shame to both God and the Jews.
Himmler, Heinrich (1900-1945)
As head of the SS and the secret police, Himmler had control over the vast network of Nazi concentration and extermination camps, the Einsatzgruppen, and the Gestapo. Himmler committed suicide in 1945, after his arrest.
Hindawi Affair (1986)
On April 17, 1986, a Jordanian journalist with a Syrian diplomatic passport attempted to blow up an El Al plane en route from Heathrow Airport to London to Tel Aviv by hiding an explosive in his Irish girlfriend’s bag. Security officers discovered the explosive device which led to Great Britain temporarily severing diplomatic ties with Syria.
Hiram Operation
Israeli military operation during the 1948 War of Independence in which Israeli forces penetrated Lebanon and occupied territories extending as far north as the Litani River. Israel later withdrew from these territories in accordance with the Israel-Lebanese Armistice Agreement signed on March 23, 1949.
Hirsch, Samson Raphael (1808-1888)
Leading figure of 19th century Jewish Orthodoxy in germany and author of a Torah commentary.
Histadrut
(Heb. acronym. Ha-Histadrut ha-Kelalit shel ha-Ovedim ha-Ivriyyim be- Eretz Israel, General Federation of Laborers in the Land of Israel) Jewish labor union founded in Palestine in 1920.
Hitler, Adolf (1889-1945)
Führer und Reichskanzler (leader and chancellor) of the Third German Reich. Through his racist ideology and diabolical plans he murdered over six million Jews and started WWII.
Hizz'kuni
Mid-13th century Torah commentary by Hezekiah ben Manoah; France.
Hoffman, David Tzvi (1843-1921)
Orthodox halakhic authority and Torah commentator; Germany.
Hohere SS-und Polizeifuhrer/(HSSPF)/(Higher SS & Police Leader)/(Generalgouvernement)
Senior SS personnel who assumed responsibility for coordinating the activities of the Orpo, Sipo, SD and General SS in military administrative districts. Their principal functions were to control the local police authorities, monitor and carry out tasks relating to intelligence and security matters and perform whatever other tasks that they were allocated by Himmler, or by the military authorities in the occupied territories.
Hok/Chok Hashvut
(Heb. Law of Return) Israeli law passed in 1950 granting every Jew the right to claim Israeli citizenship.
Holkhim b'yahad
(Heb. Walking Together) Concept of establishing dialogue and cooperation between religious and non-religious Jews.
Holocaust
(Gre. Entire Burnt Offering) A term used to refer to the genocidal Nazi policy of exterminating the Jews during World War II.
Holocaust Denial
The attempt to disprove, or belief that, the Holocaust never happened.
Holocaust Orchestras
Concentration camp orchestras established by the Nazis during WWII to greet incoming prisoners and entertain the officers. There existed six orchestras at Auschwitz including a women's orchestra at Birkenau and a male orchestra at Auschwitz, together there were approximately 100 musicians in total.
Holocaust Revisionists
See Holocaust Denial.
Hope-Simpson Commission
British commission of inquiry established in 1930 to examine the recommendations of the Shaw Commission which investigated the causes which lead to the 1929 Western Wall riot. The commission concluded that there was a land shortage in British Mandatory Palestine, and called for a halt on Jewish immigration. The conclusions reached by the Hope-Simpson Commission later served as the basis for the Passfield White Paper of 1930.
Holy Spirit
(Heb. Shechinat Hashem ) In Judaism, the presence of God as evidenced in the speech of the prophets and other divine manifestations; in Christianity, understood more generally as the active, guiding presence of God in the church and its members.
Homa/Choma U'migdal
(Heb. Tower and Stockade) Form of collective settlement built as strongholds to withstand Arab attacks during the pre-state period of the British Mandate. These settlements were usually built very quickly in the middle of the night, and were usually located on the frontier lands in order to establish "facts on the ground" and extend the possible borders of a future state.
Hoshanah Rabba
(Aram. Great Supplication). The seventh day of Sukkot. According to Jewish tradition, this day marks the time when the book of life is finally sealed and the fortunes of everyone set for the coming year.
Hospitallers
The knights of the “Order of the Hospital of St. John of Jerusalem,” commonly known as the Hospitallers, devoted themselves to caring for pilgrims, and set up a hospital and a hostel near the Church of the Holy Sepulcher.
Höss, Rudolf (1900-1947)
A member of the SS, Höss held various positions in Dachau under Theodor Eicke before he was assigned to Auschwitz in May 1940 where he oversaw the murder of more than one million people. At the end of the war, he adopted the name Franz Lang and escaped detection by the Allies. In March 1946, he was located and arrested. He was later tried in Poland and sentenced to death. Höss was hanged in Auschwitz on April 16, 1947.
Hozer/Chozer b'tshuva
(Heb. One Who Comes to Return) A Jew raised in a non-observant background who decides to become observant. (Also known as a Ba'al T'shuva).
Hudud
A class of punishments prescribed by the Quran and the sunna for crimes considered to be against god. Although interpretations by Islamic jurists vary, such crimes commonly include theft, adultery, making unproven accusations of adultery, consuming intoxicants, armed robberty and apostasy. The prescribed punishments range from lashes to banishment to death. Struct evidence is required for conviction, such as four dredible eyewitnesses to prove adultery. In addtion, the cime must have been committed by a willful and sane adult.
Humanism
Philosophy dedicated to the search for truth and morality through human means in support of human interests.
Hungarian Jews
During the Holocaust approximately 550,000 Hungarian Jews were murdered between May and July 1944; most of them were gassed at Auschwitz-Birkenau.
Huppah
See Chuppah.
Hussein Ibn Ali, Sherif of Mecca
Appointed Sherif of Mecca by the Turks in 1908. The title of Sherif was an ancient and honorable one, especially in the Hejaz (the Hejaz region, on the western coast of Arabia, includes the Muslim Holy Cities of Mecca and Media, and the port of Jeddah0, indicating direct descent from the Prophet. As a member of the noble House of Beni Hasem, of the Prophet’s own tribe of Quraish, Hussein Ibn Ali claimed descent in the male line from Muhammed’s daughter, Fatima. To the Arab World, he was a man of aristrocratic lineage.
Hussein-Arafat Accord
An agreement reached by King Hussein of Jordan and Yassir Arafat representing the Palestinian Liberation Organization in 1985 to ease tensions caused by the Black September Massacre of 1970. The accords called for Israeli withdrawal and the right of Palestinian self-determination. The accord also called for an international conference on the Middle East and a joint Jordanian-Palestinian delegation.
Hussein-McMahon Correspondence
Correspondence between Sherif Hussein of Mecca and Sir Henry McMahon, British High Commission in Egypt in which the two agreed on the terms for Arab independence from Ottoman rule. In 1916 Hussein started the Arab Revolt and declared Arab independence from Turkey.
Hymn
(Gre. A Song of Praise) Style of song, usually religious, specifically written for the purpose of praise, adoration or prayer, and typically addressed to a god or other religiously significant figure. See also piyyutim, yigdal, liturgy, prayer.

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