Kids in Jerusalem Celebrated Purim by Smoking Tons of Cigarettes

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Kids in Jerusalem Celebrated Purim by Smoking Tons of Cigarettes

The ultra-orthodox community of Mea Shearim take the holiday extremely seriously, and—for reasons that remain unclear—while the adults are getting slaughtered on Kosher Vodka the kids smoke like chimneys.
March 16, 2015, 8:42pm

VICE has covered the Jewish holiday of Purim from the US and the UK in years past, but never from Jerusalem. This year I found myself in Mea Shearim, a neighborhood in the holy city that seems stuck in an 18th century time-warp, and decided to document the drunken revelry.

Purim is celebrated in commemoration of the Jews in ancient Persia who were saved from Haman's plot to exterminate them. There is an obligation to drink during Purim until you can no longer tell the difference between the goodie (Mordechai) and the baddie (Haman) in the story. The ultra-orthodox community of Mea Shearim take this requirement extremely seriously, and—for reasons that remain unclear—while the adults are getting slaughtered on Kosher Vodka the kids smoke like chimneys.

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Below is a collection of photos from the streets of Mea Shearim on Friday, March 6.

Update: An earlier version of this article stated that the photos were taken on Thursday, March 5.

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