Science Fair Project Encyclopedia
Israel Eldad (1910-1996) born Israel Schieb in Podvolochisk , Galicia, was a philospher and one of the leaders of the Lohame Herut Israel or Lehi. In his early years he studied at the Rabbinical Seminary in Vienna and later in the University of Vienna. After obtaining a doctorate in philosophy, he returned to Poland to teach Jewish studies at the Jewish Teacherís Seminary in Vilna. He was a leader in Betar and contributed philosophical, literary and political articles to the Hebrew and Yiddish press in Poland. Arriving in Mandate Palestine during World War II, he joined Lehi. He was the movementís foremost intellectual leader and edited its underground publications. His fiery articles were widely read and discussed.
In 1944, while attempting to escape arrest by the British police, he suffered a serious back injury. Encased in a cast he was held at the prison of Jerusalem and at the Latrun detention camp . While he was brought to a Jerusalem hospital to have his cast removed, Lohame Herut Israel soldiers freed him.
After the establishment of the State of Israel, Eldad became a social critic of Israeli society and launched a monthly publication named "Sulam " (Ladder), in which he sharply criticized Israeli government policies and advocated the establishment of a new "Malkhut Yisrael " (Kingdom of Israel) Ė through the "liberation" of the entire Land of Israel as defined in the Bible.
His articles criticizing the Israeli government angered David Ben-Gurion so much that he ordered the ministry of Education and Culture to fire Eldad from his post as a high school teacher. Eldad fought his dismisal and took his case to Israelís Supreme Court and won.
While he edited "Sulam" he served as editor of "Chronicles: News of the Past" which described events from Jewish history in the form of "contemporary newspaper reports." Mrs. Van Leer, a Dutch Jewish woman, conceived the idea of the publication. She asked the late Dr. Joseph Klausner to recommend to her an editor. Dr. Klausner suggested Eldad. The "Chronicles: News of the Past" has become a great instrument for the teaching of Jewish history. The "articles" and "news items" are based on sound historical research, though they naturally reflect Eldadís thinking and understanding of Jewish history and historical factors. The volumes that have appeared so far cover history from Abraham until Shmuel HaNaggid of Spain. A new volume describing the period from then until now is at present in print. According to C. Zenziper, the American distributor, the publication was well received in the United States.
Dr. Eldad's writings
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