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January 2021

Take a “virtual tour” of Normandy’s WW2 graveyards + “meet” Canada’s Jewish soldiers buried there

January 29 @ 9:00 am - 11:00 am EST

https://youtu.be/Mhsgy6usWck Join Ellin LIVE on Friday January 29, 2021 at 9 a.m. Toronto time, when she is the special guest on the acclaimed YouTube show WW2TV, with host Paul Woodadge. Woodadge is a battlefield tour guide based in Bayeux, France. His live-streamed shows explore every inch of the northern French countryside, where Allied soldiers took on the Nazis during the Second World War. Take a live tour of the Beny-sur-Mer and Bretteville-sur-Laize Canadian war cemeteries in Normandy. With cameras at…

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February 2021

Ellin speaks to Canadian Na’amat groups about the role of Jewish women in winning WWll

February 7 @ 1:00 pm - 2:00 pm EST
ZOOM for the Calgary Naamat group, sbsacks@shaw.ca
Calgary, Alberta Canada
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Ellin Bessner will take you on a fascinating journey to meet the Canadian Jewish heroines, both at home and at the front, who helped Canada win WWII. Their contributions to history have never been properly recognized.

You will “meet” Bessner’s own great-aunt, Cpl. Daisy Lazare, who served in Ottawa, along with Sgt. Miriam Freedman, who went overseas with Normandy Landings in 1944, S/O Rose Goodman, who served in Claresholm, Alberta and Pt. Esther (Bubis) Thorley, serving in Vancouver, as well as the legions of Jewish women volunteers who raised funds, packed boxes, made sandwiches and even built the bombs.

Bessner is the author of “Double Threat: Canadian Jews, the Military and WWIl” (2019, University of Toronto Press) and a contributing author to "Northern Lights: A Canadian Jewish History" (2020, Lola Stein Institute).

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How the Jewish Community in Ottawa helped Win the Second World War: Feb. 18, 2021 Ottawa Jewish Historical Society Lecture

February 18 @ 7:00 pm - 9:00 pm EST
Zoom Ottawa, Ontario Canada + Google Map

From the 500 local Jewish men and women who served in a Canadian military uniform in the Second World War, to the legions of Hadassah and Pioneer Women who volunteered doing war work on the home front, the contribution of Ottawa's small wartime Jewish community to winning the war is a record to be proud of. Author and historian Ellin Bessner brings these untold stories to the Ottawa Jewish Historical Society for its February 2021 meeting.  Bessner is the author…

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March 2021

Ellin speaks to the Probus Club of South Edmonton about the city’s Hidden Heroes: How the Jewish Community helped defeat Hitler in WW2

March 23 @ 10:00 am - 11:30 am MDT
South Edmonton Probus via Zoom Edmonton, Alberta Canada + Google Map

As Jews around the world prepare to observe the festival of Passover, Canadian author and journalist Ellin Bessner takes us back in time to the darkest days of WWII. In her new book, “Double Threat: Canadian Jews, the Military, and WWII”, Ellin tells the story of how Canadian Jewish troops brought Passover to the front lines, even as the battle raged to liberate Europe from Hitler’s murderous regime. Learn how and why more than 17,000 Canadian Jewish men and women…

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May 2021

‘He wanted to save them all’: How Canadian soldiers liberated Europe + met the Holocaust Liberation75

May 4 @ 3:00 pm - 4:00 pm EDT
Metro Toronto Convention Centre

For Liberation75, Ellin will share stories of how Canada's fighting men in uniform acted with great compassion on their sacred mission as liberators of Europe, and their efforts in the face of the horrors of the Final Solution. With the participation of Bob Delson, son of an RCAF photographer at Bergen-Belsen, and the children of Jack Marcovitch, and others.

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Ellin speaks to Orillia’s Lake Country Probus on May 17 about the Liberation of Holland and the end of the Second World War

May 17 @ 10:00 am - 11:30 am EDT
via Zoom Orillia, Ontario Canada + Google Map

As Canada, and indeed the world, marked the Liberation of Holland and V-E Day in the spring of 1945, thousands of Canadian military personnel were still hard at work overseas, but some, in particular those of Jewish faith, had a new, humanitarian mission: rescuing the survivors of the Hitler’s Final Solution. From helping to restore Jewish places of worship in freed Dutch cities such as Tilburg, to tracking down relatives of prisoners at the newly liberated Bergen-Belsen Nazi death camp…

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Ellin speaks in Aurora May 26 about the Liberation of Holland in WWII and the Canadian Jewish fighters who were there

May 26 @ 7:00 pm EDT
Aurora Historical Society, 15372 Yonge Street
Aurora, Ontario L4G1N8 Canada
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When the Canadian troops began cleaning out the remnants of Nazi Germany's occupation forces across Holland in the spring and summer of 1945, they were met with joyous welcomes by the Dutch people who had endured starvation and brutality under Hitler's forces. But the Canadians also came face to face with the truth about the fate of Europe's Jewish community, as they liberated concentration camps and Nazi death camps from the defeated German guards. Journalist and author Ellin Bessner's book…

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November 2021

Ellin speaks to the Richmond Hill Speakers Series Nov. 4, 2021 at the Richmond Hill Performing Arts Centre

November 4 @ 10:00 am - 12:00 pm EDT
Richmond Hill Performing Arts Centre, 10268 Yonge Street
Richmond Hill, Ontario Canada
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As the world commemorates the 76th anniversary of the end of the Second World War, and Holocaust Education Week, Canadian author and journalist Ellin Bessner says we still have work to do to fight the rise of antisemitism in our time.  Bessner is the author of “Double Threat”, published by the University of Toronto Press, about the contribution of Canada’s tiny wartime Jewish community to defeating the Nazis. When the prime minister of the day, Mackenzie King, called the Second…

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