Wed, Nov 18 @ 7pm: Military Service and Americanization: Jewish Immigrants in 3 Wars

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Military Service and Americanization:
Jewish Immigrants in Three Wars
Wednesday, November 18, 7:00 pm - 8:15 pm

Free with registration at
Instructor: Michael Rugel

Many Germans and Central European Jews who came to America inspired by the failed European revolutions of 1848 ended up fighting in the Civil War. Later, many Eastern European immigrants who came to the US to escape pogroms and avoid military service in the Russian Empire, volunteered or answered the draft call during World War I without complaint. Similarly, Jewish Europeans who came to the escape Nazi persecution often returned to Europe in World War II as American soldiers eager to fight. Young men and women in each of these groups of immigrants would end up making significant contributions to the American military in wartime and the military offered a rapid Americanization process for these newcomers, unlike any other.

Michael Rugel is the Programs and Content Coordinator at the National Museum of American Jewish Military History (NMAJMH).  Prior to that he served on the museum’s collections management staff. He frequently writes about Jews in the American military and has produced a series of videos about them, including descriptions of World War II experiences of American Jewish liberators of concentration camps. He regularly gives presentations about the history of Jews in the American Military at museum programs as well as to local schools, synagogues, community centers and veterans’ groups.
Rugel also appeared in the PBS documentary film GI Jews: Jewish Americans in World War II. His writing regularly appears in the Jewish Veteran magazine and in the NMAJMH website.

All classes are free and on Zoom. Register to receive the link:

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