15th Nov 2010

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    1. The previous Lubavitcher Rebbe, Yosef Yitzchok SchneersohnYosef Yitzchok Schneersohn, the only son of Sholom Dovber took charge of the movement on the death of his father and led it until his death in 1950. He fought against the Bolsheviks by attempting to preserve Jewish life in Russia. In 1927 he was arrested and imprisoned in the Spalerno prison in Leningrad, and sentenced to death for spreading Judaism. After international protests his life was spared and he went on a world tour in the early 1930s. He returned to Warsaw in 1934, disillusioned with the secularism of the United States. He stayed in Warsaw with his Hasidim through 1940 and the capture of the city by the Nazis. A desperate struggle to save his life ensued. Ultimately he was granted diplomatic immunity, and arrived in New York in March 1940, reputedly with the help of Admiral Wilhelm Canaris. Most of the Chabad Yeshiva system was destroyed by Bolshevik governments and the Nazi invasion in 1941, and many of its students were killed.

      His ten years in New York saw the seeds of Lubavitch emissary work, and its messianic drive that was later taken on by his son-in-law and successor Menachem Mendel Schneerson. In 1948, on his instruction Kfar Chabad was established in Israel.

      He had three daughters, the oldest, Chana, married Rabbi Shemaryahu Gurary (1898–1989). The second daughter, Chaya Mushka (March 16, 1901 – February 10, 1988), married Menachem Mendel Schneerson. The youngest daughter married Mendel Hornstein, and died alongside him in the Holocaust. Schneerson and Gurary became the candidates for succession on Yosef Yitzchak's death. Schneerson was considered modern, while Gurary was problematic as his only son, Barry Gurary was not very religious at all. One year after Yosef Yitzchak's death Schneerson was chosen and turned the movement from a fairly prominent Hasidic sect into a large organization with a presence throughout the world.

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