Jewish Family Celebrates Hanukkah 2023 In Neighbor’s Attic
World · Dec 5, 2023 ·

AMSTERDAM — Acknowledging the current hostile climate toward Jews around the globe, a local Jewish family decided to carry out their traditional Hanukkah celebration this year in the safety of their neighbor's attic.

"Let's be frank here, it's not safe to celebrate out in the open," said Benjamin Cohen. "We've always enjoyed celebrating Hanukkah as a family over the years, but with the way things are these days, we just don't feel like it's in our best interests to do it publicly this year. Thankfully, our dear neighbor has offered us a place in his attic. As long as it's kept secret, we'll be perfectly fine."

The Cohen family resolved to continue celebrating the major holidays of their faith despite increasingly dangerous rhetoric directed toward Jewish people in the wake of the ongoing conflict between Israel and Hamas in Gaza. "We're not going to let the current tension take away our celebration," said Benjamin's wife, Rachel. "It may look and feel a bit different this year, what with all the anger and intimidation and threats of violence, but we'll still keep up our tradition. Our people have had it much worse than this in other times!"

The Cohen's neighbor, Lars Jansen, was happy to help the family feel safe. "They are such wonderful neighbors," he said. "I'm happy to provide them with space in my attic to engage in their Jewish religious celebrations and have no intention of turning them in if faced with intense pressure from outside authorities."

At publishing time, the Cohens' celebration had been cut short by an angry crowd of college students protesting outside.

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