The Hitler Haggadah was composed in Judeo-Arabic by Nissim ben Shimon. Originally published in Rabat in 1943, it is a retelling of the Passover story through the eyes of the Holocaust victims of Nazi Germany’s North African campaign and the devastation brought on North African Jewry. It also celebrates liberation through the victory of Operation Torch — the Allied forces campaign in North Africa. The book is a multilingualedition, including English and Hebrew translations of the Judeo-Arabic, an introduction to each translation, and commentary by Avishai Bar-Asher, Adi Schnytzer, and Jonnie Schnytzer — academics from Hebrew and Bar Ilan University respectively. It also includes a facsimile of the original text. This Haggadah follows the structure and linguistic style of a traditional Haggadah, more readily recognizable in the Hebrew translation. The Hitler Haggadah is a captivating window into the experiences of North African Jews during World War II, a less-explored dimension of Holocaust history. This Haggadah can be used to supplement your Seder but does not include the original Haggadah text. However, The Hitler Haggadah is a worthy addition to a collection of Passover books and Judaica.
This is part of the Passover 5781/2021 Haggadah Roundup.
Jonathan Fass is the Managing Director of Educational Technology and Strategy at The Jewish Education Project of New York.