Thursday, March 13, 2008

Center Bulletin, Vol. 4, No. 12

Volume 4, Issue 22
March 12, 2008

Total Number of Visitors Since October 2004: 382,727

Prime Minister and Kadima Party at the BC

A number of the members of the Kadima Knesset faction—a few Ministers among them—their aides and security people came to the Begin Center to tour the Begin Museum a day prior to the 16th anniversary of Begin's passing.

At the end of their tour of the museum, Prime Minister Ehud Olmert also arrived to meet with the faction.

They convened on the archives floor under strict security control. There, Herzl Makov, Head of the Begin Center, welcomed them and spoke of the tragic event in Jerusalem on Thursday night which preceded their visit.

"There is a need for stricter security in public buildings and institutions," said Makov, "a greater awareness of the danger toward us, wherever we go." He expressed sorrow at the deaths of these young children and extended condolences to the grieving families.

Recollections of meetings with Menachem Begin and his unique role in the life of the nation were given by Prime Minister Ehud Olmert and Minister of Housing Ze'ev Boim. Both print and electronic media covered this event.

Hasten Family Library Featured in Ha'Aretz

Every Wednesday, Ha'Aretz newspaper includes a Book Supplement in its daily newspaper with reviews and news about the local and foreign literary world. One of its human interest sections is the inclusion of stories about personal and institutional libraries. Questions asked include such as "How many volumes?", "Your oldest book?" and "Your favorite books?"

Last week, the Begin Center's Hasten Family Library was highlighted. Our librarian, Bruriah Romanoff Ben Senior, was interviewed and her picture, holding a portrait of Menachem Begin, was prominently featured. Bruriah replied to some two-dozen questions such as:

Type of library: It is a reference library, with very limited lending

How many volumes: 3,500

Special attraction: The two books found at Begin's bedside which are the last things he was reading before he died

Unique aspect of the library: Some of the books are from Begin's private library and quite a few of those books are inscribed by the author with personal dedications to Begin

Oldest book: A book published in London in 1868

Begin Foundation Well-Represented at TelFed Ceremony

The Israel section of the South African Zionist Federation, which was established 60 years ago and known as TelFed, held a unique ceremony last week to award certificates of recognition to 27 persons who have made special contributions in many fields of activity in Israel.

Among them was Shmuel Katz, the very well-known historian and biographer and five members of the International Board of the Menachem Begin Heritage Foundation who are Harry Hurwitz, founder and President of the Menachem Begin Heritage Foundation; Smoky Simon, Honorary Treasurer; Mendel Kaplan; Hertzel Katz and Dr. Ann Kirson Swersky.

At the end of the ceremony, Harry Hurwitz was asked to speak on behalf of all the honorees.

In Memoriam

We deeply regret to record the death of Julius Kaplan, husband of the late Ida Kaplan who predeceased him by 8 months. Julius Kaplan, who was a leader of the World Betar, an active supporter of the Irgun and one of the founders of the Jabotinsky Order, was a member of the well-known Kaplan family of Kroonstat, South Africa. There are n ow three members of that family still alive—Prof. Isaac Kaplan, Ruth Greenman and Esther Fluxman.

Julius is survived by his son and daughter-in-law, Shmuel and Miriam Kaplan, and his daughter and son-in-law, Ilana and Moshe Navot, and grandchildren.