The Marvellous Mr Maisel

Australia has adopted the IHRA definition of Antisemitism.
In his video announcing this, the Prime Minister, Scott Morrison, highlighted  my dear friend and Litvak survivor, Phillip Maisel.
Here is the short video with the announcement:

Scott Morrison – IHRA – Phillp Maisel

Morrison IHRA Maisel


 Phillip Maisel has  just turned 99 – a survivor from Vilnius.
His book – The Keeper of Miracles, was published in time for his 99th birthday.
Phillip filmed over 1000 interviews with survivors!
Phillip Maisel thought he?d lost his twin sister during the war. Finding her again by sheer chance is just one of the things for which this (nearly) 99-year-old is thankful.
Phillip was a friend of Hirsh Glik, the Litvak who wrote the Partisans’ Song, Zog Nit Keynmol, in 1943.
Glik was killed in Estonia in 1944.
Phillip has provided me with invaluable input for my own project – the We Are Here! Foundation.

WE ARE HERE! – For Upstanders – Founded by Eli Rabinowitz

WE ARE HERE! – For Upstanders – Founded by Eli Rabinowitz

For Upstanders – Founded by Eli Rabinowitz


Here is a short but powerful interview we did in 2017:

Why Zog Nit Keynmol is so important!

Why Zog Nit Keynmol is so important!

Phillip Maisel talks about Hirsh Glik and Zog Nit Keynmol. Melbourne, Australia 22 August 2017


Phillip telling Sholem Aleichem students about Hirsh Glik

Introduction to the Partisans’ Song : Phillip Maisel

At most Holocaust commemorations we sing the Partisans’ Song, Zog Nit Kein’mol, composed by Hirsh Glick. Hirsh Glick was my friend, and I was privileged to be the first, together with two others, to whom Hirsh read the words of the song.

My name is Phillip Maisel. I work as a volunteer at the Jewish Holocaust Centre where I am responsible for the testimonies’ department. I am a Holocaust survivor.

In 1941 I was managing a stationery store in Vilna when the Soviet Union occupied the city. At the same time Hirshke Glick was working in a similar store. I was 19; he was 21. Both of us were members of a Soviet trade union and  we attended a compulsory weekly Communist indoctrination meetings at 8:00 pm each Thursday evening. Hirshke and I became friends, and after each meeting we would walk along the banks of the Wilia River where Hirshke, already well known for his work as a poet, would discuss his poetry with me.

The two of us were young, and wanted to build a new world.

Hirshke was a very interesting person. He was quiet, dreamy and always very introspective. He told me that he would compose complete poems in his head, as it were, and write them down only when they were finished– and then never change a single word.

In June 1941 the Germans occupied Vilna. In September they created the ghetto. In the ghetto I maintained contact with all my former trade union friends, including Hirshke. He, however, was sent to work at a camp called Rezsche, but brought back later to the Vilna ghetto after that camp was liquidated. It was then that he wrote the Partisans’ Song, Zog Nit Kein’mol.

He first read it to three of us – in a cellar located in Straszuna Street.  I was present with my sister, Bella, together with Maishke, who had been the secretary of our trade union. We sat there and Hirshke read to us in the light of a candle placed on top of a box. He subsequently read the poem to fellow members of a literary society. The tune to which he then sung the words was composed by Russian Jewish composers, Dmitri and Daniel Pokrass.

On 1 September 1943, on the first day of liquidation of Vilna Ghetto I was deported to Estonia. I was attached to a mobile garage and was working as an automotive electrician for the Germans. The workshop travelled all over Estonia.. One day we were sent to a camp – Goldfilz – where I stayed for two nights and where Hirsh Glick was imprisoned. Even in camp he was respected as a poet. When we met, the first question I asked Hirsh was: “How can I help you?”  His response was: “I need freedom.” When I replied that unfortunately I could not give him freedom, he asked me if I could by any chance give him a spoon. In camp, a spoon was a treasure. It enabled him to eat his soup, the main meal in the camp. I gave him my spoon which had a sharpened handle and which could serve as a knife.

During his captivity Hirsh continued to compose songs and poems.  His death, however, was always shrouded in mystery. The historical records state that, In July 1944, with the Soviet Army approaching, Glick escaped, that he was never heard from again, and that it was presumed he had been captured and executed by the Germans, reportedly in August 1944. However, as a volunteer at the Jewish Holocaust Centre where I record Holocaust survivors’ testimonies, I interviewed a Mr Samuel Drabkin in 1993. He told me that he and his four brothers were in the camp with Hirshka. He described to me in detail how Hirshka perished. One night, he said, while returning from work to the camp, Hirsh and his fellow prisoners, among them Samuel Drabkin and his four brothers, noticed that there was a hive of activity in the camp and the Camp Commandant was drunk. Forty prisoners, including Hirsh Glick, entered a toilet block, climbed through the window, broke through the camp’s wire enclosure and escaped.  Estonian guards fired at them, and of the 40 escapees, only 14 survived. Hirsh Glick, however, did not survive: Mr Drabkin’s brother saw him shot and killed.

It has been said that Hirsh Glick wrote the Partisans’ Song while the Warsaw Ghetto uprising was taking place. I believe, however, that the song was actually written for a specific partisan – a young Jewish partisan girl with whom Hirshke was in love. But no matter. Hirshke’s song – the Partizaner Lid – sung so long ago  by Jews in the Vilna ghetto, has become the anthem of those of us who have survived the Shoah.

Zog Nit Kein’mol – es vet a poyk ton undzer trot: mir zaynen do! “Our step beats out the message: we are here!”

News From Vilnius

It began in the Vilna Ghetto in 1943.
As we approach the 75th anniversary of the anthem of the Survivors, we have established a program to recite the Partisan Poem, Zog Nit Kaynmol, in 23 languages around the globe.
Here is an article by Geoff Vasil which appeared overnight in the Lithuanian Jewish Community News

Don’t Give Up Hope: The Partisan Poem and Song Project

Hear it as a poem

The Poem

The Poem

The Partisan Poem It  was written as a poem of hope  by Hirsh Glik,  aged 20, in the Vilna ghetto in 1943. In English Aaron Kremer’s English version recited by Freydl Mrocki of Shalom Aleiche…



Read Yuri Suhl’s 1953 essay 



Transferred by OCR from this book I sourced in the NYPL


Many songs came out of the ghettos and concentration camps of Europe during the last war. Most of these songs are of unknown authorship. They have about them the anonymity of the Pashaik-the striped prisoner’s garb-and the numbers tattooed on the victim’s arm. Singly, each depicts, both in concrete imagery and in general terms, either a particular phase of ghetto life, or the predominant mood of the ghetto dwellers at a given time. Together, they are the collective outcry of people subjected to an inhuman persecution. They form a record of martyrology and courage seldom met in human history.

These songs, though saturated with the pain and anguish that marked the life of the inhabitants of the ghetto, were nevertheless songs of hope and not of despair. The mood of resignation is absent from these songs. Their underlying theme is a deep yearning for a brighter day and an unswerving conviction that such a day will finally come and bring with it the destruction of Hitlerism and the liberation of Hitler’s victims.

With these songs on their lips the prisoners of the ghettos helped lighten the burden of their daily miseries, to face the gallows, firing squads and the torture chambers and the walk on the last path to the gas chambers. And with these songs on their lips, hushed by the rules of security, muted by the laws of secrecy, the underground met in dark bunkers to plot the strategy of the ghetto uprisings.

Some of these songs are still sung by ghetto survivors in various parts of the world; some form a part of artists’ repertories and are sung from the stage; others have become part of memories too painful to be stirred into consciousness. But one song, written in the ghetto of Vilna by a young poet named Hirsh Glik, has in the short space of a few years achieved a unique popularity. From being the official battle song of the Jewish partisans of the Vilna ghetto during the war, it has become, after the war, a hymn of Jewish people all over the world. Nachman Meisel, well-known Yiddish literary critic, writes in his booklet Hirsh Glik And His Song “Zog nisht kaynmol” [Never say]: “It is a significant and amazing phenomenon that without the sanction of any authoritative publication Zog nisht kaynmol was taken up spontaneously by all the sectors of the Jewish people as the highest and fullest expression of the sorrow and suffering, the protest and courage, that filled our hearts in the recent years of annihilation and rebirth.”

During my trip to Europe in 1948, I was able to observe at firsthand the extent of the popularity of this song and its power to move the Jews. My experience fully corroborates Mr. Meisel’s statement. I recall a spring morning in the town of Lignitz in Lower Silesia. As in every other town on my tour through Poland, several members of the local Jewish committee took me on a round of visits to Jewish institutions. We began our day with the Jewish children’s school, a large renovated building with spacious class rooms and modern facilities. The teachers had been informed beforehand of my scheduled visit. Upon my arrival, all classes were suspended and the students were assembled in a large auditorium. I greeted the several hundred pupils in behalf of the Jewish children of America and then read a story to them. In response they sang for me songs of the ghetto and of the new life in Poland. When the director announced that the visit with the American guest had come to a close, the children rose spontaneously to their feet and began to sing Zog nisht kaynmol.

I watched the expression on their faces, the look in their eyes. It was as though these young children had suddenly become mature and serious adults. They began singing slowly in a low but unfaltering tone. Gradually their voices rose, swelled to a high note and dropped again. It was not the music that controlled the volume of their voices, the even-measured cadence of their tones. It was the meaning of the words that determined their tonal emphasis. It was not just a song that they were singing. They were making a vow. They had sung this very song in the ghetto or had heard it from their fathers and mothers, who were no longer alive. Some remembered that it was with this song on their lips that partisan Jews had died fighting the nazis. For the children, the song was a firm resolve never again to be children of the ghetto. It was a song to honour the dead and to inspire courage in the living. Wherein lies the strength of this song? What single feature of its composition is the source of its popularity? Do its thoughts and sentiments express the essence of its vigour or does its form give this song its special quality? Is it the melody-strong, confident, hope giving and uplifting, yet permeated with an undertone of deep sorrow-that makes this song reach out to millions? Or do the circumstances out of which it was born endow the song with the touch of immortality?


Though each of these elements is worthy of separate treatment and serious consideration, it would be a grave error to ascribe the song’s vital message and overwhelming popularity to one single factor. Rather is it the aggregate of all these elements, combined to form one unified whole, that gives this song its quality. Any proper evaluation of it must begin with its origin and its author, Hirsh Glik.

Hirshke, as he was affectionately called, was born in Vilna in 1920. His father was a poor tradesman who eked out a precarious living. To supplement his father’s earnings, Hirshke was forced to seek a job at the age of 15. He worked as a clerk, first in a paper business and later in a hardware store. The sensitive youth was often seen going home from work late in the evening, his tired face showing the strain of long hours and hard work. The urge to write manifested itself early in Glik’s life, and his first literary products already revealed a vigour and freshness characteristic of a genuine poetic talent. He was a leading member of a young literary group of Vilna called “Yungvald,” which had published, under the editorship of the poet Leizer Wolf, several issues of a literary magazine bearing the name of the group. When the Germans occupied Vilna, and herded the Jews into a ghetto, Hirsh Glik, together with several hundred other Jews, was sent to Veisse Vake, a work camp 12 miles from Vilna. There they were set to digging peat. The working hours were long and living conditions in the camp extremely difficult. Although hard labor and inhuman treatment at the hands of the nazis robbed Glik of his physical energies, they failed to break his spirit. More than ever he was now possessed of a burning desire to record the miserable life of the work camp. Late at night, when his fellow prisoners lay exhausted on the floor of their hovels, Glik cried out both for them and himself the anguish of their souls in poetry. Many of these poems he had managed to transmit to the ghetto. He was twice awarded literary prizes for his poetry by the Jewish Writers and Artists Association of the Vilna ghetto. On several occasions he even managed to come to the ghetto himself. He would then spend most of his time in the Youth Club, reading his poetry to enthralled audiences.

In the early part of 1943, the Germans liquidated the work camp Veisse Vake and transferred all the Jews to the ghetto of Wilno. Those were not “ordinary” ghetto days. At dawn of April 5th, 4,000 Jews were put to death at Ponar. Those in the ghetto who had harboured the illusion that life in the ghetto had been “stabilised,” were suddenly shaken out of their complacency. A frantic search for weapons ensued. Then came a piece of news that electrified the ghetto. The underground radio operator picked up a brief bulletin: “The remainder of the Jews in the Warsaw ghetto have begun an armed uprising against the murderers of the Jewish people. The ghetto is in flames!”

Those flames, though geographically distant, set off sparks of revolt in other ghettos and filled the Jews with a deep sense of pride in their Warsaw brethren. They gave the call to arms. The search for weapons was more feverish than before. It was in those turbulent days under the direct impact of the uprising of the Warsaw Ghetto, that Hirsh Glik wrote his immortal Zog nisht kaynmol. And when the staff of the underground met to work out strategy and assign battle stations, the song was adopted as the official battle hymn of the partisans. But the people had preceded the underground staff in this choice. Long before the staff had accorded the song this singular honour, Zog nisht kaynmol was tremendously popular in the entire ghetto.

On the first of September 1943, when the Gestapo began the liquidation of the Wilno ghetto, the partisans barricaded themselves in various parts of the ghetto to battle the Germans. Hirsh Glik and his group were surrounded by the Gestapo before they could get to their weapons. They were taken prisoner and sent to the labor camp at Goldfield, in Estonia, where conditions were even worse than in previous camps. Even the privilege of possessing pencil and paper was denied to Glik. This, however, did not prevent him from continuing his creative work. He composed and recited by heart to his fellow prisoners.

One year later, in August 1944, the rapidly advancing Red Army forced the Germans out of their positions. The nazis began to liquidate the concentration camp in an effort to erase the traces of their fiendish work. Glik realised that liquidation of the labor camp spelled death for the Jews. Together with a group of fellow prisoners he escaped to the nearby woods. There he ran into a detachment of retreating Germans and was killed in the brief encounter. He died in the true spirit of his song, fighting the enemy of his people.

Zog nisht kaynmol has attributes of a folksong-simplicity of form, an easy, natural rhyme scheme, clarity of expression and unity of mood. Not a single word or line in it is incomprehensible to the least sophisticated person. It is unaffected to the point of artlessness. Yet it has a lyrical quality, and is permeated with a richness of imagery that places it in the category of a poem of high artistic caliber. It is indeed a rare combination of simplicity and art, blending harmoniously into a unified and heightened expression. But all these elements, however fine, would not suffice to give this poem the stature it has achieved. It is the mood of the song, so clearly and forcefully expressed, which is the core of this poem’s strength, vigour and durability. In this Zog nisht kaynmol Hirsh Glik has succeeded in articulating the prevailing mood and feelings of the Jews of the ghetto of Wilno and of resistance in all other ghettos and concentration camps. He had forged a fighting weapon.

The poet had adapted his words to an appropriate melody. The music was originally a Cossack Cavalry song composed by the Pokrass brothers, two Jewish Soviet composers, for a poem written by the Soviet poet A. Surkov.

Although words of the Cossack song are not related to the content of Glik’s poem, the music seems to blend harmoniously with the words of Zog nisht kaynmol. Without straining for symbolism, one cannot help but reflect on this association-a Soviet, Cavalry song wedded musically to a Jewish partisans’ battle poem. It is known that in areas liberated by the Red Army other Jewish partisans changed the fourth line of Glik’s song from “Svet a poyk tun undser trot; Mir zenen doh!” (Our marching steps will thunder: we are here) to: “Die Stalinshe chavayrim zenen doh!” (The comrades of Stalin are here).

Zog nisht kaynmol has been translated into many languages. We know about versions in Rumanian, Dutch, Polish (three versions), Spanish, Hebrew and English (five versions). Of the five English versions, that of the young Jewish American poet Aaron Kramer seems to me the most successful. “Niederland Film,” a Dutch film company, produced a documentary based on Glik’s song in 1947. And the famous Soviet Jewish poet, Peretz Markish, created an heroic character based on his conception of Hirsh Glik in his monumental Yiddish poetic work, War.

Thus a Yiddish song, inspired by the heroic uprising of the Warsaw Ghetto, written by a young Jewish partisan in the Wilno ghetto and adopted by the partisans of this ghetto as their offal battle hymn, has reached out to the far corners of the globe to become a battle song for peace for millions of people. For the message of this song, the warning it sounds, is as timely and vital for us today, when nazism is being restored in Western Germany became a battle song for peace for millions of people, as it was to the embattled Jews of the ghettos and the fighting Jews in the woods. In these days, when the architects of war pacts and the cold war use every device to sow gloom and despair in the hearts of the people, every expression of strength, courage and reaffirmation of faith in democracy is a rallying force. Hirsh Glik’s Zog nisht kaynmol is, in this sense, a weapon in the arsenal of democracy.


Please contact me for further details:




Don’t Give Up Hope!

We have reached the next phase of our Partisan Song project: Don’t Give Up Hope.

In April 2018 we will commemorate 75 years of the Partisan Poem, Zog Nit Keynmol, written by Hirsh Glik, aged 20, in the Vilna Ghetto in 1943.
This anthem is sung around the world at Yom Hashoah ceremonies on Holocaust Remembrance and Heroes Day.
Glik’s poem of hope, heroes and resistance is the legacy of the Partisans and the Survivors. We must continue to honour it!
It is still mostly sung in the original Yiddish with the result that many, especially the younger generation, do not understand the meaning, inspiration and context of the poem.
We have found the solution for this!
While there is no need to change the language we traditionally sing it in, we have created a site where we can read and study the words in our own language and understand Glik’s inspiration, and its context.
The poem is now available in 23 languages:
Here is a message for educators and those who wish to embrace the legacy of the partisans and survivors :
Share the following with students and your contacts:
  • Study the poem with learners, recite it and ask them to do the same.
  • Help them to record and make a creative video of their rendition.  Students are excellent at this.
  • Post it on social media – YouTube, Facebook, WordPress, Dropbox, WhatsApp, Google Drive etc. Set a deadline before 27 January 2018, the International Holocaust Remembrance day (Auschwitz Liberation Day).
  • Email the address of the posting to  so that we can share the videos on that date.
  • Examples can be found here:
  • Organise students and friends into groups to make a second video, singing the song in a language or languages of your choice, in time for posting before Yom Hashoah on 11 April 2018.
  • Examples here:
The outcomes for both educators and learners participating in this free project include:
  • Understanding the meaning, inspiration and context of the Partisan poem;
  • Having a greater appreciation of poetry;
  • Learning some Yiddish;
  • Singing the anthem;
  • Being creative;
  • Connecting with other groups of teachers and learners;
  • Honouring the legacy of the partisans and survivors; and
  • Being inspired!
This is an updated video on the project so far:

For more details of our work since January, please visit the website:
Here is a message from Phillip Maisel, 95, survivor and friend of Hirsh Glik:

75th Anniversary of the Partisan Song

We are planning a series of worldwide events leading  up to the 75th anniversary of the Partisan Song next April.

This 4 minute interview with Phillip Maisel below highlights the importance of the Partisan Song, and the role of our youth in keeping alive the legacy of Hirsh Glik’s poem of hope!

Phillip, 95, was a friend of  Hirsh Glik, and one of the first to hear this poem recited in the Vilna Gheto in 1943

I visited the Jewish Holocaust Centre in Melbourne:

and Mount Scopus Memorial College:

where I presented my Partisan Poem and Song Project to leading Jewish educationalists and oulines the plans leading up to Yom Hashoah.

IMG_5273 IMG_5264

At the Jewish Holocaust Centre

With Sue Hampel, Ricki Mainzer, Anne Gawenda, Edwin Glasenberg, Phillip Maisel & Freydi Mrocki
With Sue Hampel, Ricki Mainzer, Anne Gawenda, Michael Cohen, Phillip Maisel & Freydi Mrocki

My presentation (slides):

JHC Slides – Google Drive

The videos are mostly here –

With Ely Segal

With Amanda Castelan-Starr, the Jewish Studies Curriculum Co-ordinator

This is the full 27 minute interview with Phillip:

Freydi Mrocki reciting the Partisan poem at the Jewish Holocaust Centre.

Video: Emmanuel T Santos.

New resources found in the NYPL

Reprinted from Radical Yiddish with permission of Joel Schechter.

Yuri Suhl Article from 1953 – a must read!

More details on the program to follow!



(Inspired by Irene Lilienheim Angelic’s letter to Leonard Cohen)

18 July 2017

Hirsh Glik

Dear Hirsh

“Zog Nit Keynmol” is Yiddish for “Never say…. that you have reached the end of the road”. These are the opening words to the poem that you wrote in the Vilna Ghetto during the horrendous times for Jews in 1943.

Yet your poem contains words of hope, heroism and inspiration for the partisans and the inmates of your ghetto. When you read “Zog Nit Keynmol” on the street corner to your friend Rachel Margolis, she matched it to the music of the 1938 Russian march by the Dmitri and Daniel Pokrass.

The song was soon sung in the ghettos and camps of Europe. It has been sung as a stirring anthem or hymn every year for 73 years since, by Survivors and others at Yom Hashoah ceremonies throughout the world. It has been translated into many languages.

The song is so well known but not necessarily well understood. Perhaps it is because it has been mostly sung in Yiddish, a language which is no longer spoken as it was in your time!
I established the Partisan Poem & Song project in February this year after I was asked by King David High Schools in Johannesburg, South Africa to address their 1000 high school students about the meaning, inspiration and context of the Partisan Song.

Our goal is to increase the understanding of the song’s powerful and positive message and, at the same time, create a bridge between your generation which originally sang it and future generations – creating continuity while there are still Holocaust Survivors among us.
To achieve this, school choirs are invited to learn the song in a language/s of their choice, to record their performance and post it on our dedicated website, to create a video tapestry of remembrance.
Within a few weeks of the project’s launch in February this year, World ORT, the world’s largest Jewish education and vocational training non-governmental organisation, operational in 37 countries, adopted the project. In their pilot, ten ORT schools in the Former Soviet Union submitted videos. These were compiled into a single video, sung in different languages, in time for Yom Hashoah.

We are now building resources to help students analyse and understand the song as you originally wrote it, namely as a poem. We have found 17 different language versions, making this a truly international program from its outset.
Yad Vashem has a resource for Teaching The Holocaust Through Poetry, using the poem “Refugee Blues” by famous British poet W H Auden. It was written in 1939, six months before war broke out, about Jewish refugees and not specifically about ghettos or camps.
Your Poem sits perfectly alongside Refugee Blues as the most important resource of a poem written in the ghetto during the Holocaust.

Mervyn Danker, a retired school principal based in San Francisco, has set up an outline of a study guide for teachers to use when teaching your poem or the song.

World renowned authorities such as Shirl Gilbert, are interested in the progress of this project, and educational NGOs in Poland, Lithuania, Austria and Poland are keen to participate.

Phillip Maisel, 93, a volunteer at the Holocaust Centre in Melbourne, Australia, is our direct link to you as he was your good friend, and was one of the first to hear your poem!

To watch the video and to read more, please visit our home page:

Zog Nit Keynmol

Menu Please watch this short video and join an inspiring project: From World ORT: Quote    World ORT With each Yom HaShoah the number of Survivors dwindles making the challenge of engaging new gene…



I will keep you posted as to how the project is growing.


Eli Rabinowitz
Perth, Australia

The direct link to the YouTube video is here:

The Partisan Song in Australia


Last week I was given the opportunity to talk to Year 10s at Moriah College.

My thanks to Jewish studies teacher Hilary Kahn for setting this up.

The presentation was on The Partisan Song Project.

Here are some selected slides from my presentation:

Moriah-Keynote-Final-.001s Moriah-Keynote-Final-.002s Moriah-Keynote-Final-.003s Moriah-Keynote-Final-.004s Moriah-Keynote-Final-.008s Moriah-Keynote-Final-.011s Moriah-Keynote-Final-.017s Moriah-Keynote-Final-.024s Moriah-Keynote-Final-.025s Moriah-Keynote-Final-.026s Moriah-Keynote-Final-.028s Moriah-Keynote-Final-.030s Moriah-Keynote-Final-.031s Moriah-Keynote-Final-.032s Moriah-Keynote-Final-.034s Moriah-Keynote-Final-.037s Moriah-Keynote-Final-.038s Moriah-Keynote-Final-.039s ORT-CIM-Mexico
Phillip Maisel

Some photos from Moriah College:

IMG_6953 Moriah-0s Moriah-1s Moriah-2s IMG_6964 IMG_7704 IMG_7710 IMG_7714 IMG_7716
With Hilary Kahn & David Borecki
Yom Hashoah Yom Hashoah 2 Yom Hashoah 1

David Borecki at the Yom Hashoah Commemorations


Phillip Maisel

Freydi Mrocki


With Heiny Ellert

Limmud Oz – Perth

IMG_6805s photo 3 photo 5 IMG_6806s


Dylan Kotkis

Tzvi Friedl

Let’s Recite the Partisan Song on Yom Hashoah

Continue the Legacy of the Jewish Partisans and Survivors

With Don Krausz
“From generation to generation”

With less than a week to go to Yom Hashoah on 23/24 April, show your solidarity with Survivors by reciting the Partisan Song, Zog Nit Keynmol, in your own language.

Even better, record & share it on Facebook or Twitter. You can also Dropbox or email it to me at and I’ll upload it for you!

It can also be in a combination of languages such as Yiddish, Hebrew and English

Here are 15 different language versions for you to choose from:

Here is an example of a recitation:

Freidi Mrocki, a teacher at Shalom Aleichem College in Melbourne, recites Aaron Kremer’s English translation:

Want to sing or recite it in Yiddish, Hebrew & English?

Encourage participation by your children and grandchildren by learning the song and its meaning.

Encourage your school or shul choir to learn and to sing it.

With Veronica Phillips & Barbara Berman

We are inspired by Phillip Maisel:

More details at

Zog Nit Keynmol

Workshop at the Holocaust & Genocide Centre

On 15 February I gave a couple of workshops at the Johannesburg Holocaust and Genocide Centre.

One session was for survivors and the other for staff and members.

(L-R). Eli Rabinowitz & Don Krausz

This was the first time I had presented specifically to a group of survivors, although I had filmed several survivors’ testimonies in the past.

I showed photos from my trips to the Baltics & Eastern Europe as well as some videos from my Zog Nit Keynmol project for King David & Herzlia Schools.

The most noticeable outcome was the positive reaction to my initiative to get our youth learning and singing Zog Nit Keynmol, the Partisan Song.

(L-R). Eli, Veronica Phillips, Barbara Berman

For more details on Zog Nit Keynmol, please visit:

The two key videos to watch are:

the Phillip Maisel Interview

Herzlia’s Vocal Ensemble Sings:

Below is a video of Freidi Mrocki reciting the poem in English. Freidi is the teacher at Sholem Aleichem College in Melbourne, who recorded the interview with Phillip Maisel in 2015.


(L-R). Shirley Sapire, Betty Slowatek, Eli, Margaret Hoffman


IMG_5458 IMG_5450 IMG_5462 IMG_5463 IMG_5467 IMG_5468 IMG_5480 IMG_5481 IMG_5447 Holocaust Centre

The Legacy of the Partisan Song

Zog Nit Keynmol – the partisan song

A simple request from King David High School in Johannesburg has now snowballed into an international project involving schools in South Africa, Australia, Lithuania, Ukraine and Moldova.

This is an amazing opportunity for this beautiful and inspiring song to be heard. Sung by young students, it rekindles hope for their and future generations.

Please contact me at to find out how your school or organisation can become involved.

Click on the link below and read more details about this anthem and how this project developed.

Zog Nit Keynmol

King David Linksfield

King David Linksfield

King David Victory Park

My radio interview on ChaiFM on 7 February.

Click here  Zog Nit Keynmol for more details on the project and videos used in the presentation.

ORT Solomo Aleichemo, Vilnius, Lithuania

On 11 January 2017, I was asked by Rabbi Craig Kacev, head of Jewish Studies at King David Schools, Johannesburg, South Africa, whether I could make a presentation to the students at the Linksfield…

Click here to continue with more details: