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Natan Sharansky’s Journey From Prison to Leadership

Watch a global interactive class with the former Soviet prisoner of Zion, Israeli politician, human rights activist and author, Natan Sharansky. Learn about the story of Soviet Jewry and Sharansky’s personal journey from 9 years in the Siberian Gulag, where he spent over 400 days in solitary confinement, to his release to a new life in Israel. After watching the video, use the prompts below to learn more and get your students thinking.

  • Discussion
  • Activities
  • Further Learning
  1. How did Sharansky’s perspective change when non-Jewish people in the Former Soviet Union asked him “how did you guys succeed in winning the 6 Day War?”
  2. How did Operation Entebbe and Yoni Netanyahu inspire Sharansky while he was in prison?
  3. What did Sharansky mean when speaking about his imprisonment, when he said “whether or not I will be a free person in prison depends on me”?
  4. Sharansky explains that one of the major reasons there is a divide between Israeli and Diaspora Jews is because of the lack of Israeli “religious tolerance” towards different streams of Judaism amongst Jews living in the Diaspora. What do you think is a practical way to bridge this gap amongst Israeli and Diaspora Jews?
  1. Watch our two videos about Natan Sharansky and the Refusenik Movement and utilize the attached educational resources:
  2. Watch our two videos about Operation Entebbe, an event that greatly inspired Natan Sharansky and utilize the attached educational resources:
  3. Give your students our Kahoot on Natan Sharansky!

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