Nazis Kill Palmach Paratrooper Haviva Reik

November 20

November 20, 1944 Haviva Reik and two other paratroopers from British Mandatory Palestine are among about 40 Jewish fighters executed by the Nazis after the suppression of an uprising in Slovakia. Reik, who was born Emma Reik in the Slovakian village of Radvan, made aliyah in 1939 and enlisted with the Haganah’s elite Palmach. She […]

Singer Ofra Haza Is Born

November 19

November 19, 1957 Singer Ofra Haza, the youngest of nine children, is born in Tel Aviv to a family who had emigrated from Yemen. Haza grows up in the impoverished Hatikvah Quarter, where she is surrounded by music, including a mother who was a singer in Yemen. Haza joins her school choir. and at age […]

Rock Star Yoni Rechter Is Born

November 18

November 18, 1951 Yoni Rechter, considered one of Israel’s greatest musicians, is born in Tel Aviv. He is the son of architect Ya’akov Rechter and stepson of actress Hanna Meron. He pursues music as a boy and joins the Artillery Corps band during his military service. Rechter joins the band Kaveret as a keyboardist in […]

Gangster Yaakov Alperon Dies in Car Bombing

November 17

November 17, 2008 Organized-crime leader Yaakov Alperon, 53, a suspected murderer who has survived as many as three assassination attempts, is driving home from a court hearing for two of his sons in Tel Aviv when he is killed by a remote-controlled bomb in his car. He is survived by wife Ahuva and three children, […]

Haim Bar-Lev Is Born

November 16

November 16, 1924 Haim Bar-Lev, an Israel Defense Forces chief of staff, is born in Vienna, Austria. His family moves to Yugoslavia before settling in Palestine in 1939. He studies at the Mikveh Israel agricultural school and intends to become a veterinary surgeon, but instead he is drawn to service in the Haganah’s elite Palmach […]

Pianist/Conductor Daniel Barenboim Born

November 15

November 15, 1942 Conductor and pianist Daniel Barenboim is born in Buenos Aires to Russian-Jewish immigrants. At age 5, he begins taking piano lessons from his father, who remains his teacher. He moves to Israel with his family in the early 1950s. He studies piano all over the world, including Salzburg, Paris and New York. […]

Hamas Military Chief Killed as Pillar of Defense Begins

November 14

November 14, 2012 Ahmed Jabbari, the Hamas military chief, is killed in an Israel Defense Forces airstrike on Gaza that marks the start of Operation Pillar of Defense. The strike comes in response to an increase in rockets fired from Gaza into Israel. The Israeli goal is to destroy rocket launchers by targeting weapons warehouses. […]

Shagar Is Born

November 13

November 13, 1949 Rabbi Shimon Gershon Rosenberg, known by the acronym Shagar, is born in Jerusalem to Reb Shalom Zelig and Sasi Rosenberg, both Holocaust survivors. Shagar is recognized as a rabbi, a philosopher of modern Zionism and a community leader offering a religious response to postmodern trends. He helps create a new Orthodox approach […]

Labor Politician Eliyahu Speiser Dies

November 12

November 12, 2009 Former Knesset member Eliyahu Speiser dies at age 79. Born in Haifa on March 23, 1930, Speiser was educated at the Hebrew Reali School and Hebrew University, where he earned a degree in bacteriology and served as the secretary of the student union. He also studied economics and law at the University […]

Air Force Founder Yisrael Amir Is Born

November 11

November 11, 1902 Yisrael Amir, the first commander in chief of the Israeli Air Force, is born in Vilna in the Russian Empire as Yisrael Zabludovsky. He makes aliyah in 1923 and that year joins the Haganah, the Jewish military force in Palestine. He completes the Haganah commanders course in 1926 and is put in […]

Hatikvah Officially Declared National Anthem

November 10

November 10, 2004 More than half a century after the founding of the state of Israel, the Knesset officially adopts “Hatikvah” (“The Hope”) as the national anthem. The song became the anthem of the Zionist movement in the 1930s and was popularly used as Israel’s anthem from the birth of the state because it symbolizes […]

Gen. Avraham Tamir Is Born

November 9

November 9, 1924 Avraham Tamir, a military strategic mastermind who rises to the rank of major general, is born. He is one of the first Israeli officials to meet with the PLO’s Yasser Arafat and shows support for the creation of an independent Palestinian state. After serving in the Haganah and the British army in […]