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Sen. Schumer Celebrates Sefer’s Return from Russia

U.S. Senator Charles E. Schumer today met with rabbis of the Chabad-Lubavitch community to mark the recovery of a sacred text from the Schneerson collection.

Since 1992, eight volumes of the collection have been located in Russia. Earlier this year, Schumer and members of the entire U.S. Senate sent a letter to President Putin requesting the return of the Schneerson collection of sacred texts from the Russian State Library and the Russian State Military archive.

While Russia has not yet returned these sacred texts to Chabad, one volume was recently discovered at Kedem Auction House in Israel and returned to the Chabad. Today, Schumer celebrated the return of this book, alongside members of the Chabad-Lubavitch community, and said that he will do everything in his power to fight for the return of the rest of the Schneerson Collection.

“The discovery of this sacred text in Israel is a simcha for Chabad and the entire Jewish community and I am grateful to have been a part of this joyous occasion,” said Senator Schumer. “However, we will not rest until the entire Schneerson collection is returned to Chabad and I will continue to fight for its return from Russia.”

Those in attendance at today’s celebration in Senator Schumer’s office included: Rabbi Chaim Cunin – Chabad House Publications; Rabbi Yosef Cunin – Beverly Hills Jewish Community; Rabbi Mendel Cunin – Chabad of Larchmont; Rabbi Zushe Cunin – Chabad of Pacific Palisades; Rabbi Levi Cunin – Chabad of Malibu; Rabbi Tzemach Cunin – Chabad of Century City; Rabbi Avrohom Litvin – Chabad of Kentucky; Zev Cunin –  Son of Rabbi Yosef Cunin (age 8); and Chabad pro bono legal advocates: Steve Lieberman, Nat Lewin, Alyza Lewin, Nechama Potasnick.

A copy of the letter sent to President Putin earlier this year is below:

The Honorable Vladimir Putin
Russian Federation
Moscow, Russia

Dear Mr. President:

We are writing respectfully to reaffirm our support and request for the return of the Schneerson collection of sacred texts from the Russian State Library and the Russian State Military Archive to its rightful owners, Agudas Chasidei Chabad of United States (“Chabad”).

On May 31, 1992, all one hundred members of the United States Senate appealed to then-President Boris Yeltsin to honor Russia’s commitment to return the collection to Chabad. On February 24, 2005, all one hundred members of the United States Senate again signed an appeal for your assistance in returning the collection. Copies of these letters are attached hereto. Since 1992, eight volumes of the collection have been returned to Chabad. We hereby respectfully request your assistance in seeing the return of the entire collection.

Thank you for your attention to this important matter.



  • 3. Lichayim! wrote:

    Thank you for posting, this is the Gemara the Rebbe Maharash learned in! He put his soul into it!
    Every moment it was in the hands of those who don’t believe in the sanctity of the gemara, most probably the Rebbe Maharash’s soul was in a lot of anguish. So now the relief he feels is a caused for celebration!

    • 5. Millhouse wrote:

      Their father has been dealing with the Seforim since the early nuns, maybe do some research before you make stupid comments!

    • 6. The Rebbe wrote:

      The Rebbe appointed a board of four people to take care of getting back the seforim etc. (and also to organize and coordinate all the work of chabad in russia – the Rebbe told them to call the board Agu”ch of the former U.S.S.R.). They are: Shlomo Cunin (who was the one who originally started the efforts in the early eighties, and it was he who chose the other three as per the Rebbe’s directive), Beryl Levine (who is the main librarian at the Rebbe’s library and who identified the seforim in russia), yossel aharonov (who undertook to fundraise for all the efforts and projects), and itche kogan (“the tzadik of leningrad”, who spoke russian well and dealt with the russia authorities).
      The former three definitely appointed these rabbis and lawyers to dealt with the case (thats a famous street fact), and it may very well be that itche kogan did too.
      So the people in this article are working for the board the Rebbe himself set up!

    • 8. Milhouse wrote:

      Hey! Get your own name. You have no right to impersonate me, even with an extra L.

  • 9. The Rebbe wrote:

    Many of the men mentioned in the article, themselves had interactions with the Rebbe about dealing with senators about the seforim in nun alef, nun beis. Because their father was in russia, he should ask his sons to do different things necessary to be done in the U.S.

  • 11. Y L wrote:

    Amazing job getting the sefer back to us. The Rebbe said the books belong to the chasidim so this is a victory for us all. Rabbi Litvin and Rabbis Cunin a huge debt of gratitude is owed to you.

    Yasher Koach

  • 12. Anonymous wrote:

    not only did the rebbe apoint rabbi cunin levin mindel aronov. but he did so publicly at farbrengen calling them up and giving them mashke


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