The Ties That Bind [Hardcover]
When Russia was still an empire ruled by the Czar, the jews of that land suffered from a harsh decree: From the age of 12, every boy had to enlist in the army. The boys were taken out of their homes and sent to training camps where they were taught to be obedient Russian soldiers. At the age of 18, they began their active service, and they had to serve for 25 years. In that environment, most of them forgot whatever they knew about Judaism, so Jewish families did everything they could to keep their sons out of the army.
When the Czar learned that the jews were resisting the draft, he sent soldiers to go to jewish towns and take the boys by force. The chappers, as they were known in Yiddish, would brutally grab the boys and take them away.
In this story will also meet great rabbis like Rav Yisrael Salanter and The Tzemach Tzedek, real figures of Jewish history who lived in Czarist Russia and did their holy work of strengthening the Jewish spirit in those difficult times.