14-09 Betar's 90th and Maon opening Celebration:
Melbourne. More photos of the event earlier this month as provided by Tamir Aloni. The photos can be seen here.
14-08 Sid Agranoff comments:
"[In article] 2014-05 [below], Shim is quoted as saying that I came to Australia from China. This is not strictly true. My parents together with my brother and sister arrived in Sydney from Harbin early in 1938. I was born three years later in Sydney.
My parents’ history is quite interesting. There was a strong Betar movement in Harbin in the years prior to 1938 and perhaps beyond. There was a great number of White Russians in Harbin who had escaped the Russian revolution. They were essentially still royalists, loyal to the Tsar (who was killed by the communists earlier) and they were mostly strongly anti-Semitic. It was Betar who protected the Jewish community. My brother, although quite young, (he was 14 when he came to Australia) was a member of Betar together with Boris Shteinman (he changed his name to Bob in Australia). They were frequently fighting Russian kids even at that young age.
In 1933, the Japanese invaded Manchuria of which Harbin was the capital, and life became increasingly difficult. In 1937, my father was arrested on some trumped up charge and it took a big bribe to get him out. That was when he decided the family had to leave Harbin.
My father wanted to go to Russia or America but could not get visas. It was lucky he didn’t go to Russia. Stalin either murdered returning Russians or incarcerated them in Siberia as Japanese spies. He could get a visa to Australia, and that is why I am here."
14-07 Nostalgia reigns!
In 2000, John Goldlust and I created a CD-ROM which contained many of the memories we had of Betar in the 'early days'. Due to the technology of the time - low bandwidth and the state of the computer evolution - the CD was the only practical way there was of distributing this amount of information.
Times have changed a lot since then and broadband is available to many if not all of us. With that in mind, we now give you the opportunity to access the CD-ROM on-line. Check it out here.
- Harry Stuart.
NOTE: This facility is not yet functional.
14-06 Betar Australia - the Evolution of a Zionist Youth Movement by Shimshon Feder and Jack Mirjam.
Originally included in the CD-ROM we published in 2001, we now make it available on our website. It is particularly important now to set the record straight about the origins of Betar in the light of inaccuracies which appear elsewhere.
Download the PDF file here.
Note: This paper has been copyrighted by the authors.
14-05 Can you trust Wikipedia?
In a reference to the establishment of Betar in Australia, the article claimed that Betar Australia was born in Sydney in 1924. There are no references quoted nor was the author identified.
Shimshon Feder, one of the earliest members of Betar in Melbourne, a past Betar Shaliach and author of a paper with Jack Mirjam on Betar Australia's history, comments on the Wikipedia article:
"The information it seems was submitted by someone from the US or Canada. The style and syntax leaves much to be desired, erroneous and incomplete. Much of the material is unimportant or irrelevant to the Development of Betar as a youth movement. There was no Betar anywhere in Australia in 1924, the earliest being in Melbourne during the late 1930s (Sam Parasol's father). Even After Riga in 1923, it took several years to develop in Poland and other eastern European countries. The China element in Australia Betar after Mao take over in 1948 came to Sydney and not Melbourne. And Among others included Hans Dreyer, Bob Shteinman, Larry Sitsky, Alex Auswaks, Leo Rogovin, Sid Agranoff."
14-04 Betar's 90th and Maon opening Celebration - Melbourne.
Melbourne celebrated Betar's 90th anniversary and the opening of its new Maon on April 6, 2014 in South Caulfield. In attendance were Neriyah Meir MK, David Southwick MP, and serving and past Rosh Hanhagah Artzits. An article by Avi Feldman and photos submitted by Avi and Tamir Aloni can be found here. Quite a few 'vintage' Betarim also attended and are identified (hopefully all of them) by Aaron.
14-03 Australian Zionist Movement history:
The History of Zionist youth Movements in Australia - Jonathan Ari Lander. Several Betarim were interviewed for Lander's thesis back in 2007. Aaron found his dissertation recently out on the UNSW website. Although rather lengthy, it is quite interesting reading. He references about 8 of us as well as articles and illustrations from this website.
Link to this and download the whole PDF file in the link list on the right.
14-02 Betar Reunion in Melbourne: (From Frends of Likud Parents and Friends of Betar (Vic) Betar Melbourne):
"We are excited to call upon Betarim of all ages to join us for a Betar reunion to celebrate 90 years of the movement in Australia! We are keen to make this an event for all the ages and as such invite you to share this information with any other Betari that you know. Please utilize this contact form to contribute scanned photos from your time in Betar and many of them will be included in a video presentation on the day, “90 years of Betar in Australia”. Please indicate the year the photo was taken so we can arrange the video in chronological order. We would appreciate if as many of you can RSVP as soon as possible so we can cater adequately for this event. We look forward to seeing all of you on Sunday April 6th at 3:30pm at the new Betar Maoz in Maple Street, South Caulfield."
14-01 Betar's 90th in Sydney:
(From Parents & Friends of Betar Sydney Inc. email): October 2013 saw some 260 parents and friends of Betar celebrate Betar's 90 years. A great time was had reconnecting, sharing memories and recognizing the great opportunities that Betar provided us in developing lifelong friendships and skills. Miriam Briggs' slideshow can be seen here.
14-10 Larry Sitsky Impresses the Critics:
The article from the Canberra Times, forwarded by Margaret Beadman to Danny Rosing, appears here.