January 17

History events
1449 — (23th of Shevat, 5209) In Toledo, Spain, 14 Conversos are put on trial and deprived of their offices because it is believed that their conversion to Christianity was not sincere and that they still cling to their Jewish ways
1670 — (6th of Shevat, 5430) Raphael Levy a Jewish inhabitant of the city of Metz was burned at the stake, accused of having ritually murdered a Christian child, Didier Le Moyne. In Metz, Burghers of the city decided that it was financially beneficial to expel the Jews, and so concocted a ritual murder libel. Raphael Levy, a respected member of the community, was arrested, tortured and burned alive. The Royal Council later called it «Judicial Murder» and the Jews were not expelled
1842 — (6th of Shevat, 5602) West London Synagogue of British Jews, the U.K.’s oldest Reform congregation, was opened today
1896 — (2th of Shevat, 5656) The Jewish Chronicle published Herzl’s first article «A Solution to the Jewish Problem,» which appeared a month before Der Judenstaat, and with its editorial, «A Dream of a Jewish State» opened the readers’ columns to a discussion of Herzl’s plan
1898 — (23th of Tevet, 5658) At Marseilles, France a crowd paraded through the streets crying “Death to the Jews” and “Shame upon Zola
1925 — (21th of Tevet, 5685) Today, “in order to resolve socio-economic difficulties of the Russian Jews and promote agricultural labor among them, the CPSU formally created a government committee, the Komzet, and a complementary public society, the OZET.”
1939 — (26th of Tevet, 5699) The Nazi government issued a decree regarding the expiration of permits for Jewish dentists, veterinarians and pharmacists
1945 — (3th of Shevat, 5705) The Soviets arrest Raoul Wallenberg, whom they cynically suspect is using his humanitarian efforts for the Jews to cover his collaboration with the Germans or the Western Allies (the War Refugee Board was sponsoring him)
1946 — (15th of Shevat, 5706) The Anglo-American Committee of Inquiry, a joint British and American committee composed of six Americans and six Englishmen that was charged with examining the “political, economic and social conditions in Mandatory Palestine as they bear upon the problem of Jewish immigration and settlement therein and the well-being of the peoples now living therein” completed its deliberations in Washington, DC today which had begun on January 4
1970 — (9th of Shevat, 5730) The writing of the «Sefer Torah for the Greeting of Moshiach,» initiated at the behest of the 6th Lubavitcher Rebbe, Rabbi Yosef Yitzchak Schneersohn, in 1942, was concluded 28 years later at a special gathering convened by the Lubavitcher Rebbe on Friday afternoon, the 9th of Shevat, on the eve of the 20th anniversary of Rabbi Yosef Yitzchak’s passing
1991 — (2th of Shevat, 5751) Iraq fired 8 SCUD missiles on Israel. Israel had agreed that it would not respond and leave the destruction of the SCUD launchers to the Coalition Forces fighting Iraq. This marked the first time in Israel’s history that it relied on others for its defense
1997 — (9th of Shevat, 5757) Israel handed over its military headquarters in Hebron to the Palestinians as part of the peace process that began with the Oslo Accords. The entire Jewish population had been forced to abandon its homes in Hebron in 1936 because of Arab violence. In 1968, the Jews returned to this ancestral city. While the Israeli government may have surrendered sovereignty, the Jewish settlers remained
2002 — (4th of Shevat, 5762) A Palestinian gunman burst into a bat mitzvah celebration in a banquet hall in Hadera, opening fire on the 180 guests with an M-16 assault rifle, killing 6 people and injuring 35 people following which the Fatah Al-Aqsa Brigades claimed responsibility for the attack

1658 — (23th of Shevat, 5418) Birthdate of Samson Wertheimer the native of Worms the chief rabbi of Hungary and Moravia, and rabbi of Eisenstadt who also gained fame as an Austrian financier, court Jew and Shtadlan to Austrian Emperor Leopold I. He passed away in Vienna in 1724
1747 — (17th of Shevat, 5507) Marcus Herz, physician and philosopher, born