Monday, September 10, 2007

Center Bulletin, Volume 3, Issue 48

Volume 3, Issue 48
September 10, 2007

Total Number of Visitors Since October 2004: 325,119

Begin to be Celebrated by Druze Group

Next Wednesday, 19 September, the Druze community of Daliyat El Carmel will assemble for an event celebrating the great Israeli leader Menachem Begin. The event was initiated and organized by Amal Nasereldeen who is a former Knesset member and chairman of the Druze Yad L'Banim. He is also a member of the public council of the Menachem Begin Heritage Center.

The government of Israel will be represented by Minister Yitzhak Herzog, the Minister of Welfare and Social Services and Minister of the Diaspora, Society and the Fight Against Anti-Semitism, who will address the gathering. Other personalities expected to attend the event and to deliver greetings or short addresses are Prof. Moshe Arens, former MK Amnon Linn, Sheikh Tarif (who is the spiritual leader of the Druze). There will also be a panel of speakers from the Jewish community and the Druze community.

Menachem Begin Park Dedicated at Azur

Overcoming a decade of opposition from the Labour-oriented Local Council, the town of Azur finally approved the dedication of its central park to the memory of Menachem Begin. The initiative originated with Advocate Navon Katzav and it was he who organized the ceremony held on September 5th. It was addressed by Yechiel Kadishai, Efrayim Even, as well as Mr. Katzav. The park is 55 dunams in area (16 acres). The Menachem Begin Heritage Center donated the large stone memorial with a special text that is placed at the park's entrance. Present at the ceremony were Chassia Begin, Council Head Amnon Zach and Yisrael Drobles, representing the Menachem Begin Heritage Center, in addition to scores of local residents who will benefit from the recreational area.

Chol HaMoed Sukkot

Large crowds of visitors are expected at the Menachem Begin Heritage Center during the five days of Chol HaMoed Sukkot and therefore, persons desiring to visit the Center are urged to make reservations ahead of time by calling (02) 565-2020 (or from abroad at 972-2-565-2020). Those requiring translations of the commentary in the museum are fortunate this year to have the translation available in five languages—English, Russian, Spanish, French and Arabic. These all appear on the sound system that can be heard on the earphones provided at the reception desk. Recent visitors have been most grateful and complimentary about the various languages available to them.

During Chol HaMoed Sukkot the museum will be open as follows:

First day of Chol Ha'Moed (Friday)

September 28 9am-12:30pm

Chol Ha'Moed

September 30-October 2 9am-7pm

The day before Simhat Torah

October 3 9am-12:30pm

Mazal Tov

A hearty Mazal Tov to Yuval and Nirit Bar Or on the birth of their second son, brother to Magen. Yuval is the Director of Office Administration at the Menachem Begin Heritage Center.

Begin's Speaking Venue to Become Apartments

The Edison Theater, located on Yeshayahu Street corner of Belilius Street in Jerusalem, one of the city's landmarks since it was built in 1932, and a site where Menachem Begin frequently made major public indoor addresses, is undergoing a major alteration.

The theater was a central element of the city's cultural affairs with distinguished guests and officials in attendance. For many years the theater served as a culture center; artists from all over the world performed there, and political parties held their conferences at the venue. Amos Oz's The Hill of Evil Counsel detailed the p laying of the British anthem "God Save the King" before the screening of movies. On May 16, 1936, at the beginning of the three-year Great Arab Revolt, terrorists bombed the movie house killing three Jews - a doctor, baker and Hebrew University student. Once, in 1944, an attempt to assassinate the High Commissioner MacMichael there was made by the Lechi but failed. In another Amos Oz book, A Tale of Love and Darkness, the author describes a speech made in the theater by Begin in the early 1950s. It was also the scene of many Neturei Karta demonstrations as the old secular-religious border used to run near Edison which borders Geula and Meah Shearim.

However, the building, which stood vacant for many years, was purchased by the Satmar sect led by Aharon Teitelbaum and will become an apartment complex.


Prof. Joe Ben Simon and his wife Terry were welcome visitors at the Begin Center last week when they met with Harry and Freda Hurwitz in the White Nights restaurant. They had previously visited the Center and were most impressed at the time by the building, the museum and other features.