Wednesday, February 21, 2007

Center Bulletin - Volume 3 Number 19

Volume 3, Issue 19
February 21, 2007

Total Number of Visitors Since October 2004: 260,253

"We served in the Government"

A well-known journalist Lili Galili, who writes regularly for the HaAretz newspaper, made comparisons between the attitude of some of today's leaders and the conduct of Menachem Begin.

She wrote:

We wanted to draw your attention to an interview with Menachem Begin, which was broadcast to mark the 15th anniversary of his death. The details with which he described the diplomatic and political processes of that time, which may not even have been to your liking, are not what's important. We wanted you to pay attention to the way in which he spoke. First of all, he spoke about his party by using the word "we." When, in recent times, have you used the word "we" when speaking about your workplace – aside from the moment when you wanted to turn personal responsibility into collective responsibility?

But the strangest thing was hearing Begin say in the interview – twice – "when we served in the government." What a surprising turn of phrase! Not "sat" in the government, but "served" in it! That is the entire difference. Serve us. We'll do the rest on our own.

50 Years Ago…

Alexander Zvielli has reported in his From Our Archives column in the Jerusalem Post that 50 years ago, on February 15, a rare meeting between Menachem Begin as Head of the Opposition and Prime Minister David Ben-Gurion took place. Zvielli wrote: "The meeting, the first of its kind, touched on many subjects, but its primary objective was to discuss the Opposition's wish for a national referendum on the nation's preparedness to face international sanctions."

New in the Hasten Library

On Tuesday, the 20th of February, Bruriah Ben-Senior, the Center's Librarian, walked into the office of the Head of the Center, Harry Hurwitz. She showed him a book, bound in leather-like material and marked Edition Speciale. The book, in French, is entitled Salam. Shalom, was published in 1978 as the observations of the first Arab journalist to visit Israel while accompanying Anwar Sadat on his visit to Jerusalem.

The author, Mohamed Maradji, inscribed the book to Menachem Begin on 20th February 1978 – 29 years ago to the day. In his inscription, Maradji express his hope, "with all my heart, for peace with dignity, for all mankind".


Justice Christopher Nicholson of South Africa's Supreme Court, who was in Israel last week for the first time, paid a special visit to the Menachem Begin Heritage Center and its hi-tech museum, which impressed him very much.

He was the guest of the Head of the Center and his wife, Freda.

Judge Nicholson's book about the influence of Richard Wagner on Hitler was a major attraction at the Jerusalem International Book Fair. It received widespread recognition in Israel's media and is much talked about. Judge Nicholson spent 15 years on research to write the book which shows clearly the direct influence of Wagner on the Nazi philosophy.

Before leaving the Begin Center, Judge Nicholson wrote in the visitors' book: "A deeply moving experience—it will be an inspiration to us all in the future!"

* * * * *

The newly elected Chairman of the Irgun Veterans Association, Mr. Ephraim Even and two leading veterans, Haim Korfu and Yehoshua Lender had a meeting in the Begin Center with its Head Harry Hurwitz and Director General Herzl Makov. They discussed cooperation in various areas in the year to come starting this week, the 15th anniversary of the death of Menachem Begin.

* * * * *

Brisk, where Menachem Begin was born, was of special interest to the Grant family, who came to Israel to celebrate a bat mitzvah this Monday. The respectable elder of the family originated in Brisk and was intrigued to come to the Begin Museum and to look around the first exhibit which is of Brisk, and to hear Menachem Begin's descriptions of the town during World War I.

Part of the tour of the Grant family included a dinner with Yehuda Avner, one of Menachem Begin's advisors, who gave a talk about the man on whom he has written numerous articles over the last few years.

Naomi Homnick, a friend of Mark Hasten of Indianapolis, Indiana, came to the Begin Center with members of her family. They were very impressed by both the Center and the Museum.

Earlier this week, Tom Peleg, grandson of Smoky and Myra Simon of Tel Aviv, Israel, visited the Begin Center and Museum.

Visitor Comments:

v This was a wonderfully moving tribute to one of the great leaders of the Jewish people and the country of Israel. – New York, New York, USA

v A wonderful Prime Minister whose dreams should and will become reality. – Brooklyn, New York, USA


mnuez said...

Glad to have found (this other) site of yours. Kol HaKavod for your work in honoring Menachem Begin and in helping to further his goals (even if your wife does hate him for the Sinai accords).

Kol Tuv,