Sukkah at Brandenburg Gate makes history

Chabad rabbi sets up public sukkah opposite symbol of Nazi power.

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Yoni Kempinski,

Rabbi Teichtal in his sukkah opposite Brandenburg Gate
Rabbi Teichtal in his sukkah opposite Brandenburg Gate
Chabad Berlin

Those passing Berlin's Brandenburg Gate during the intermediate days of the Sukkot holiday were surprised to see an impressive sukkah standing opposite the gate.

After the Nazis came to power, Brandenburg Gate served as a symbol of their strength.

Berlin Rabbi Yehuda Teichtal, who also serves as the city's Chabad emissary, welcomed Jewish residents and tourists, offering light refreshments and inviting them to use the Four Species.

Rabbi Teichtal quoted one of his visitors as saying "he was really upset that he would not merit this year to fulfill the commandments pertaining to the holiday of Sukkot."

"He didn't stop thanking us for giving him this opportunity," Rabbi Teichtal said. "To him it wasn't just any opportunity - it was an opportunity to express Jewish strength, an opportunity to take the Four Species opposite the gate which once symbolized so much evil."

In addition to the sukkah, Rabbi Teichtal organized activities in Berlin throughout the holiday.

"We also have mobile sukkahs, which allow Jews throughout the city to fulfill the holiday's commandments," he said.