Soldiers at Seders: Passover During WWII | IFCJ
Skip Navigation

Soldiers at Seders: Passover During WWII

American servicemen and women celebrate Passover during World War II (Photo: wikicommons/American Jewish Historical Society)

Next week, Jewish people around the world will celebrate the biblical holiday of Passover. Passover seders (the meal commemorating the Israelites' Exodus from Egypt) have been held for thousands of years, all over the globe. Tablet's Marjorie Ingall provides this fascinating look at how the brave men and women who fought during World War II observed Passover:

“Lettuce au charoses.” “Kneidlach or borscht a la Sgt. Weinstein.” “Consommè [sic—the accent points the wrong way!] avec Knadlach.” “Palestine wine.” “Roast Beef Ala Yomtov.” “Iced Coca-Cola.”

These were some of the dishes enjoyed by Jewish members of the military at their Seders in both European and Pacific theaters of war 70 years ago. The American Jewish Historical Society at the Center for Jewish History has a file full of yellowing menus, programs, and homemade haggadot for these celebrations of freedom; they make fascinating reading, a lens through which to appreciate American Jews’ culinary and military past.

While researching a different story at the Center, I stumbled on this file and wound up so enthralled that I scrapped my original column idea to focus on this instead. Who were these American soldiers, noshing on matzo-ball soup in strange lands, sometimes near active fighting? Who organized these Seders? Who did the cooking? It was time to research...

Tags: History

Previous Post

Next Post

Bless Israel For Her 70th

Help Her Survive

For elderly Jews like Tatiana in the far reaches of the former Soviet Union, the harsh winter months threaten their very survival. You can help provide winter relief essentials like heating fuel and warm clothing as well as food and medicine to an elderly widow who has no one else to care for her.

Donate Now
Landscape photo of Jerusalem with the Dome of the Rock in the foreground.

Visit Israel

Here you’ll find an array of useful information on accommodations, transportation, exchanging currency, Israel's climate and customs, and much more. So get the most out of your trip to Israel with the help of The Fellowship.

Read More

About The Fellowship (IFCJ)

The International Fellowship of Christians and Jews (IFCJ) funds humanitarian aid to the needy in Israel and in Jewish communities around the world, promotes prayer and advocacy on behalf of the Jewish state, and provides resources that help build bridges of understanding between Christians and Jews.

Read More