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In a tradition dating back to the biblical patriarch Abraham, infant male Jews have been ritually circumcised as a sign of the Jewish people’s covenant with God.Even during the bleakest days of Nazi persecution, Jews tried to observe this practice.Those who “looked Jewish,” did not speak the local language, or whose presence in a rescuer’s family raised too many questions had to be physically hidden.Children were kept in cellars and attics, where they had to keep quiet, even motionless, for hours on end.Parents, children, and rescuers faced daunting challenges once the decision was made to go into hiding.Some children could pass as non-Jews and live openly.

For the children who had to leave their parents behind, the emotional pangs of separation were constant and the worries many.

there were approximately 1.6 million Jewish children living in areas that the Germans or their allies would occupy.

When the war in Europe ended in May 1945, more than 1 million - perhaps as many as 1.5 million - Jewish children were dead.

For Jews to pass as “Aryans,” it was essential to have false identity papers, which were often gained through contacts with the anti-Nazi resistance.

Using forged or acquired papers, such as a birth or baptismal certificate, Jews sometimes could obtain legitimate documents under an assumed name from the authorities.

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