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Home >> The Amuta >> Activities
Keness at Kibbutz Tzora
by Yehuda Guy (from an email to Hillel Schenker and Machzor Kaf-Hey)

We decided to go ahead despite the weather forecasts.  But were quite prepared that only the members of the committee itself would turn up, despite the fact that some 40 people had in fact confirmed that they would be coming.
I left Jerusalem as thick snow was falling, happy to be leaving it behind but a bit frightened that if the snow indeed settled I might be stuck out of town.  In the past there have been occasions when the roads have become jammed up with abandoned vehicles whose driver could not cope with the conditions.
So what the heck, I could always stay in Tel Aviv the night.
The whole of this country goes wild at the thought of snow on the ground and half the country gets ready to go up to Jerusalem to see it, Personally I have had enough of the cold and wet and I always say, somewhat tongue in cheek, that the main reason for coming to Israel for me, was to get away from the wet of England.
The nightmare of a tour guide in the passed was going in the mosques on Har Habayit (Temple Mt) and having to remove our shoes, only to find on the return that in order to get to the shoes again one has to walk through puddles.  But here I am digressing now.
On the other hand I was somewhat disappointed at having left Jerusalem and the snow if it did settle on the ground because I might be missing some good photo opportunities.
 (This photograph was taken by me but not this year)
I left Jerusalem about 9:00 and the roads were packed as usual. Half way to Tzora, Haim Avni, a former teacher and madrich at the Machon, and today in charge of the archives of the Jewish Agency, phoned me to say that he wasn't feeling too well and that he wouldn't be coming.  I wished him well and started worrying. Haim Avni was meant to be one of the speakers - if the speakers didn't arrive this did not portend well to the success of the day. On the way some chaverim phoned to tell me that they were already there and asked were we were meeting.  Good I won’t be alone!
We ended up by being about 35 people from 18 machzorim – from the very first (Aleph) to the youngest (Nun-Bet—32) No youngsters but I didn’t really expect any, it being a week day.

Emanuel Gerstner opened the session by welcoming everyone, made mention of the weather (while it was hailing outside!), and gave a long list of credits to people both present and absent. He  invited the participants to inform their chaverim of the memorial service for David Brodsky to be held on 30th March at Kiriyat Moriah (and here I am reminding you lot, please do come – I don’t want to be the only representative of our machzor yet again.)  I think that we all remember David Brodsky with affection and for his memory and for his wife Ada’s sake please - do join me. 11:30,, don’t forget. Contact me if you want to come. Let me know if anybody wants to say a few words in memory, or if anybody wishes to write to me to that effect I could read out your message.
I appealed to chaverim to contact me with updated lists of their machzorim. So many emails and letters are returned undelivered and it is my job to try to keep things up to date. (Not every machzor is as efficient as Kaf-Hey.) That was one of the main purposes of this meeting and that is why we invited just a couple of representatives from each machzor, although anybody could have come of course.

I also forwarded the proposal that we have a yearly “happening” of a cultural nature inviting bogrei machon, both professional and amateur, from Israel and abroad to perform or to present their talents. There was some positive reactions to this. I shall try to pursue this line and shall contact Menachem Winegrad, a former chanich and also a boger machon, who produces something called Jacob’s Ladder Festival twice a year at Kibbutz Ginossar. Anybody with other suggestions or ideas please let me know
Gidi Shimoni, another boger machon (from S. Africa) and former teacher and madrich at the Machon gave a powerful talk on Zionism today. What Zionism was at its outset but more about “post Zionism” what it is for us and the world today. It wasn’t boring and a pity that you weren’t there to hear it. A lively debate followed, bring in those subjects that always are associated for us today – religion and the Palestinian problem Chaverim wanted to continue the discussion after lunch but Gidi had to be at the airport, he was going to give the same talk in NY that same evening!
After lunch, Dr Ran Kahan gave us an extremely interesting view of the kibbutz today. The problems of privatization, the poor kibbutz, the “kibbutz” in the eyes of the Israel population today. A discussion followed that could have continued on for a week. Another speaker was Shlomo Bar Gil a researcher for Yad Vashem and Yad Tabenkin (the seminar of one of the kibbutz movements) One of the speakers (Avraham Shomroni) who added his thoughts on the subject knows you, Hillel (and remembers your father well) and sent his regards. He remembered the very first shaliach to Dror, England following the pilug (split) in the 1950’s, so we had a little reminiscing as well..
The journey home to Jerusalem was in the rain, but for a few brief moments the sun did come out and there in front of me as I drove was a beautiful rainbow....
                           (I did stop the car to take the photo!)
The end of a good day.


David Brodsky Memorial Meeting
30 March 2007
About 150 people gathered to remember David Brodsky, the legendary teacher of the Institute for Youth Leaders from Abroad for 30 years and its Director for twenty-five.
The hall was packed to capacity with not a single seat vacant and several people having to stand.
The ceremony started with a welcome by Ada Brodsky.  Married to David for 45 years, it was she         who first taught at the Machon and later brought David to be a teacher there in 1953.

The Eterna choir, conducted by Ilia Plotkin, sang some of the melodies beloved by David – the  Hebrew prayer Hallelujah, and songs in Yiddish and Russian

Ada then recounted some of the milestones in David’s life (see “In Memoriam”). He was the son of a Jewish-school headmaster in Poland.  A member of a Zionist youth organization, he was extremely active, so much so that he was sent to the last Zionist Congress in Switzerland prior to the Second World War.  He didn’t return to Poland and eventually arrived in the USA where he was enlisted as a translator into the US army.  He was well versed in many languages – Polish, Russian, Hebrew, English, French and later also Spanish and possibly more.

Elisha Linder, a former director of the Machon, talked of the beginnings of the Machon just after the end of the Second World War, his introduction to David and of David’s talents as a teacher of Jewish History.
A film was shown about David Brodsky in the States telling how he met a Jewish soldier in the Russian Army just after the World War II.  The soldier although he knew that he was the last remaining member of his family in Europe thought that his sister had made it to America and lived somewhere in or near Chicago.  When David was next in Chicago some time later he put an advertisement in the Jewish newspaper and incredibly the sister contacted him. David had to tell her that all her family had perished but happily that she still had a brother in Russia with whom she managed to make contact. That was David Brodsky - a caring soul, someone you could rely on.

What was impressive at the memorial was that there were people representing many stages of David’s life. Of course there many Machon chanichim of different ages, but there were even people who remembered David from Poland and Bronia Klivenski told us of how David’s sister who, not looking Jewish in any way, acted as a messenger constantly passing from the ghetto to the outside and back. She was eventually caught not for being Jewish but for being a suspected communist and as such was sent and ended her days in Auschwitz.
The  service  was  held  in memory of David and was organized by Ada Brodsky  who  so  lovingly and capably  directed the program.

What was impressive at the memorial was that there were people representing many stages of David’s life. Of course there many Machon chanichim of different ages, but there were even people who remembered David from Poland and Bronia Klivenski told us of how David’s sister who, not looking Jewish in any way, acted as a messenger constantly passing from the ghetto to the outside and back. She was eventually caught not for being Jewish but for being a suspected communist and as such was sent and ended her days in Auschwitz.

Yehuda Guy, the secretary of the organization of Bogrei Machon told how so many former students of the Machon had written emails in remembrance of David. We had added those to the list of eulogies compiled for the occasion.

Ada Brodsky ended the meeting by thanking everyone for their presence in honoring David Brodsky’s memory and then invited those present to partake of the  refreshments that she had provided.

Emanuel Gerstner, the chairman of the organization of Bogrei Machon speaking on behalf of all present, thanked Ada  for having organized the memorial


Bogrei HaMachon Come to Sderot for the Meeting of 'Administrators'
Tue. 15th January 2008

In the end we were 29.  Zilda didn't give up until the last minute  ... "we are coming, you can add our names", they said on the telephone - but they still didn't show up when we left. We arrived 10 minutes early to Binyanei HaUma and froze to death waiting those 10 minutes, as frost covered the ground in Jerusalem. Our driver was Arik. We left at 08:15 pleased to have the heating back on and picked up Daniel Portnoy (Machzor 56, our youngest participant on that day) on the way. We finally arrived at Tel Aviv at 09:15 to collect those of the Shefeyla and the north.


On the Bus                                                In front of one of the wall paintings

אור הנר הינו קיבוץ יפהפה ומתופח  בקרבת רצועת עזה החוגג 50 שנה לקיומו. כולנו התרשמנו מהנוי והניקיון – בשום מקום לא ניראה לכלוך או פסולת , נקי להפליא.  קיבל אותנו במקום מוסו צפניוק, חבר ותיק בקיבוץ ואומן – צייר ופסל – בפני עצמו, אשר בגאווה  סיפר והסביר את  מהות ציורי הקיר הפזורים במרחבי הקיבוץ.  מתברר שהקיבוץ הזמין ואירח שני אומני ציורי קיר מארגנטינה חוסה קורה ודניאלה אלמיידה אשר  ביוני 2007 הם שהו במקום עשרים ואחת יום,  ספגו את אווירת המקום ויצרו בשיטה מיוחדת ציורי קיר מרהיבים במקומות שונים בקיבוץ המהווים היום אחת האטרקציות של הקיבוץ.



"הנתינה"                                         שלום הלוי מספר על שדרות 

שלום הלוי בלהט סיפר על עירו ועל הימים הקשים שאוכלוסייתה עוברת זה מספר שנים, כאשר לאחרונה מורגשת הסלמה הן בתדירות והן בכמויות הרקטות ומרגמות הנופלות בתחום שדרות ובישובי הסביבה והוזלת ידה של הממשלה להושיע. לאחר הרצאתו המעלפת הדריך אותנו בסיור בעיר במקומות בהן נפלו קסאמים ואף ראינו את הנזקים שגרם קסאם אשר נפל לפני יומיים ותיקון הנזקים אשר נגרמו לבית טרם הסתיימו, גג רעפים ארוס וחלונות מנופצים, במזל שאיש לא היה בחדר בעת ההתקפה. גם השקפנו לעבר מקורות הירי ברצועת עזה מעל גבעה בשכונה מערבית של שדרות וגם יכולנו לראות את מצבור הקסאמים הנערמים בחצר המשטרה כאשר תאריך ומקום הנפילה של כל אחד נרשם עליו.


       במט משדרות לעבר נקודות שילוח הקסאמים        מול מצבור הקסאמים אשר נפלו בשדרות 


ארוחה צהריים  דשנה ציפתה לנו במסעדת "גן עדן".
לבסוף חזרנו למתנ"ס שם בחדר המחשבים קיבלנו הסבר מרן אפק, מתכנן ומקים  בסיס הנתונים של בוגרי המכון,  על איך כל נציג יכול להיכנס לבסיס הנתונים של המחזור שלו לאחר קבלת שם המשתמש והקוד האישי שלו ואיך ניתן לו לתקן ולהוסיף נתונים ברשימות.
יצאנו משדרות בשעה 17:15   בהכרה שנוכחותנו במקום חיזק בנו תחושת הזהות עם סבלם של תושבי האזור וכדברי עמנואל  "שדרות זה אנחנו".   ובנסיעה חזרה שמענו ברדיו על מטח  של רקטות קסאם נופלות על שדרות וסביבתה, באותו ערב נפלו במקום 40 רקטות וצה"ל הגיב בהתאם בירי מסוקים על מקורות ההתקפה של החיזבלה.
עד מתי ?