December 18

History events
1744 — (24th of Tevet, 5505) Jews expelled from Bohemia
1938 — (25th of Kislev, 5699) “One Jew was killed and two were wounded when a Jewish-owned bus, traveling on the new coastal road between Haifa and Tel Aviv was fired on by “unidentified assailants”
1946 — (25th of Kislev, 5707) An Arab landowner is assassinated because he sold land to Jews
1949 — (27th of Kislev, 5710) The Palestine Post reported thirty-five men and women from 12 countries signed up for a three month class to become first-aid workers for the Magen David Adom, the Israeli ambulance service. Instruction was in French, Hebrew, Judeo-Spanish and Yiddish
1953 — (12th of Tevet, 5714) Israel’s first paper mills were dedicated today at Hadera, midway between Tel Aviv and Haifa — тhe enterprise, sponsored by investors from the United States, Brazil
1953 — (12th of Tevet, 5714) Two Unit 101 squads led by Meir Har-Zion began an attack along the road e to Hebron
1956 — (14th of Tevet, 5717) The IDF hoisted the Israeli flag on the purported site of Mount Sinai
2006 — (27th of Kislev, 5767) The «Local Testimony» photography exhibition opens in Dizengoff Center in Tel Aviv, in commemoration of Lior Ziv, an IDF Spokesman photographer who was killed during an Israel Defense Forces operation in 2003
2012 — (5th of Tevet, 5773) Tthousands of fragments of the Dead Sea Scrolls went online today with the launch of a new website by Google and the Israel Antiquities Authority, part of a move to make the famed manuscripts easily available to scholars and casual web surfers

1887 — (3th of Tevet, 5648) Birthdate of Capt. Artur Carlos de Barros Basto, “a decorated Portuguese military officer, a hero of Portugal’s 1910 revolution and World War I and leader of the open return to Judaism of the Crypto-Jews of Portugal. ….. Barros Basto died in 1961, almost blind, a disappointed man. He has never been exonerated by the Portuguese Army of the decision of 1943 of the Minister of the War under the Fascist regime of Antonio Salazar who stripped him from the Portuguese Army Officer Corp for the simple fact of his being Jewish and being a defender of religious tolerance and of the Portuguese Crypto-Jews in particular. The attempts and efforts to rehabilitate him continue to this day. He was born in the Portuguese city of Amarante on December 1887, and was given a Catholic education. When he was nine years old his grandfather told him they were descendants of Jews forcibly converted in 1497. Raised by his mother in Porto, he attended the Portuguese Military Academy and participated in 1910 in the founding of the Portuguese Republic. He later commanded a battalion of the Portuguese Corps in World War I, as lieutenant on the Western front. There he met a French rabbi who likely further influenced him. Upon his return to Portugal from the war he began to study Judaism and Hebrew. Rebuffed by the Israeli community of Lisbon, he went to Tangier to formally return to normative Judaism, adopting the name of Abraham Israel Ben-Rosh. He married the daughter of a prominent Lisbon Jewish family and settled in Porto where in 1923 he created the Israeli community of Porto, still active today, Barros Basto became known as the «Apostle of the Marranos», the title of a short biography by noted historian Cecil Roth who met Basto in 1930 and described him as the most charismatic man that he had ever met. Basto had been recommended in 1926 by Lucien Wolf of the London Marranos Committee to be the recipient of funds to establish a Jewish school and lead the return of thousands of descendants of Jews forcibly baptized in 1497 (New Christian, Conversos, or Marranos, more politically correct known as «Anusim», Hebrew for «forced one»). Basto established «Rosh Pinah», described by him as a «theological seminary», the first Jewish school in 500 years. In 1929 the first stone of a new synagogue was laid. A magnificent art nouveau synagogue, Mekor Haim was inaugurated, in 1939, the year of Kristallnacht. Basto had led a successful international fund-raising campaign from Jewish communities with historical connection to Portugal such as Amsterdam, London, New York, Hamburg and Paris. Paul Goodman, friend, and president of the Portuguese Marranos Committee attended; so did Moses Amazalak, president of the Lisbon Israeli community. Rabbi David de Sola Pool of New York was an avid supporter and a room in the synagogue is named after him. «Adonai (God) is with me and I will not fear»[5] was his motto, and he was not afraid to canvas the interior of Portugal to make surveys, the contacts, to defend the Jewish identity of the Crypto-Jews at the same time having the goal of returning them to modern Judaism. Upon his return to the city of Oporto, he established the Israelite Community in 1923, and was one of the founders of the synagogue of the city of Oporto in 1938. Given the difficulties that he found in Portugal, most of all financial, he left Portugal. In London the Committee of Portuguese Marranos was created, that raised £10,000 for the construction of a community centre with a synagogue and a reading room, and to hire a resident rabbi”
1947 — (5th of Tevet, 5708) Birthdate of Steven Spielberg