Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Center Bulletin - Volume 3, Issue 18

Volume 3, Issue 18
February 14, 2007

Total Number of Visitors Since October 2004: 258,316

Many Events in Honor of Menachem Begin

More than in previous years, there is widespread recognition of the significance of the 15th Memorial Day for Menachem Begin. From the top level of government circles to local councils, to the press, the radio and television, in universities and colleges, the occasion will be marked by many programs and features.

Although the State observes such memorials only every ten years, there will be various informal state commemorations.

On Sunday 25 February, the government will recall the 6th Prime Minister of Israel during its weekly Cabinet meeting. That afternoon, Israel's television Channel 1 will air the 4th episode of the 6-part series HaNoar LaShilton ("Youths on the way to leadership") featuring the Junior Knesset program taking place in the Reuben Hecht Auditorium of the Menachem Begin Heritage Center.

By that time, the family memorial service will have taken place at the graveside and the weekend papers, presumably, will feature some articles, including recollections and interviews.

The main television channels have been working on special programming and Galei Tzahal Radio will be presenting numerous features as listed below.

· 16 February: At 5:05pm will be Books, Gentlemen, Books, a replaying of a special program that was made for Begin's 90th birthday including words from Yechiel Kadishai, Dan Patir and others.

· 17 February: At 9:05am will be a replay of a personal interview with Menachem Begin from 1974.

· 22 February: At 2:05pm will be The Man from Rosenbaum Street an interview show with Eitan Haber, author of several books about Menachem Begin.

· 22 February: At 10:05pm will be Intellectuals at Night a discussion program with Eitan Haber and Prof. Shlomo Aharonson.

· All through the week of February 18-22: At 11:05am every day, a small item in remembrance of Menachem Begin.

Reshet Bet, another radio station, will broadcast an hour about Menachem Begin with host Arieh Golan on February 22 at 6:00pm.

On March 13, the Hebrew University Student Union will be presenting a seminar about "Ethics in Government" in Mexico Hall in honor of Menachem Begin.

Hot Off the Press: Begin's Famous Principles

The long-awaited booklet of Menachem Begin's vision and basic policies came off the press on Tuesday and will be available for distribution among the highest groups of national, political, academic, judicial and press circles. The booklet was produced by the Begin Center's Samuel Aba and Sisel Klurman Research Institute. The work of compiling it and adding meaningful footnotes was done mainly by Ziv Rubinovitz and Moshe Fuksman-Sha'al.

It is a very attractive, modern publication, although there is not one change in the text of Menachem Begin's writing in 1951. The publication has a foreword by Zvi Harry Hurwitz, head of the Menachem Begin Heritage Center. (View a picture of the cover at:

Gifts to the Library and Archives

This has been gift week for the archives and library of the Menachem Begin Heritage Center.

The Hasten Library received eight cartons of books, journals and other publications from the collection of the late Nechama and Mussia Elran, who grew up in China and came to Israel in the early 1950s. Nechama was the sister of the late Eliyahu Lankin.

The collection includes important books and the journals of the Betar in China.

Secondly, the Archives, named in Honor of Yechiel and Esther Kadishai, received a DVD of a Betar Camp which took place near Cape Town in South Africa at the end of 1953 and the beginning of 1954.

The guest of honor at the opening of the camp was none other than Menachem Begin on his first visit to South Africa. He is in a happy mood as he meets hundreds of members of Betar, sees various activities at the camp, joins in the group dancing and addresses the campers and visitors.

The DVD is based on 8mm and 16mm movies that were salvaged from the records of the late Morris Egdes, who was head of the Betar in that period. Later he came to Palestine among the early Machal volunteers and on his return to South Africa he entered business and later local politics as the mayor of Sandton.

His son Jonathan, who brought the movie to Israel, recently collaborated with Hertzel Katz, also a former head of the South African Betar and now a prominent leader of the South African community in Israel and a well-known lawyer in Ramat HaSharon.

In Memoriam

We deeply regret to record the death of Uri Porat last week at the age of 71 and extend our heartfelt sympathy to his wife Tzipa, his children and his grandchildren. Uri Porat was a leading journalist on the Yediot Ahronot newspaper and served as the media advisor to Menachem Begin from 1981 to 1983. Thereafter, he was appointed as the head of the Broadcast Authority where he served altogether 6 years in two different periods. He was an active supporter of the Menachem Begin Heritage Center and participated in numerous events dedicated to the memory of the great leader in different parts of the country.

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We extend our heartfelt sympathy to Gordy Zacks of Columbus, Ohio, whose mother, Florence Zacks Melton, passed away last week at the age of 95. She was well-known in business and education circles having invented the world's first foam cushion slipper and co-founded the RG Barry Corp., one of the world's leading developers and marketers of accessory footwear. She also invented and held patents on some twenty other items.

Throughout her life, Mrs. Melton was a leader and organizer of quality Jewish education and at the age of 70, she pioneered the Florence Melton Adult Mini-School program. Her surviving son, Gordy who is well-known in American pro-Israel circles, is a member of the International Board of the Menachem Begin Heritage Foundation.


Mr. Mendel Kaplan, member of the Board of the Menachem Begin Heritage Foundation, visited the Center last week and held discussions with the Head of the Center, Harry Hurwitz, and its Director General Herzl Makov.

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Hart Hasten, President of the US Friends of the Menachem Begin Heritage Foundation, visited the Center on Monday when the opportunity was taken for a meeting with Harry Hurwitz and Herzl Makov on the current state of the Foundation and future plans.

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Mr. Milton Jawno and his wife, Beulah, visited the Center and for the first time toured the Begin Museum, which moved them deeply. Mr. Jawno came to Israel many years ago from Kimberly, South Africa, where his late father, Mr. Lionel Jawno, had been the mayor. In that capacity, he welcomed to Kimberly Ze'ev Jabotinsky and Menachem Begin.

Visitor Comments:

v It was a privilege to see the Menachem Begin Heritage Center and to honor our great leader and for me to represent my late father, Lionel Jawno of Kimberly South Africa, who was honored to know the Rosh Betar, Menachem Begin. – Ra'anana, Israel

v A memorable and moving tribute to an inspirational man. Thank you.