Mordechai Beck

Obituary: Myer Silverstone

By Mordechai Beck, March 19, 2009

British-born top civil servant Myer Silverstone made a major impact on Israel’s formative years as director-general of the Ministry of the Interior.

Descended from an illustrious rabbinical family — his Lithuanian-born grandfather was a well-known Liverpool rabbi in the 1890s — he attended the Grocers’ School (Hackney Downs), studied at Jews’ College and London University, and qualified as a solicitor in 1937. He was also a leading figure in Young Mizrachi and Torah Va’Avodah.


Obituary: Avraham Ravitz

By Mordechai Beck, February 12, 2009

Equally at home with his fellow Charedi rabbis and the man in the Israeli street, Rabbi Avraham Ravitz became an influential and effective MK, gaining widespread respect and affection.

The young Ravitz was happy whether being educated at Sinai Talmud Torah school or playing football in Tel Aviv’s Montefiore Quarter, where his strictly Orthodox family lived.

At 13 he joined Lehi, the extremist — or terrorist — anti-British underground freedom fighters’ group. With the establishment of the state and disbandment of militias, he served in the Israel Defence Forces.


Still fighting the battle over Israeli conversions

By Mordechai Beck, January 14, 2009

For many Israelis, Rabbi Chaim Druckman represents the very essence of religious Zionism. His cheerful countenance, swathed in a flowing white beard, commands great respect well beyond the confines of the Zionist yeshivah world in which he has been a major player for almost half a century.


The battle over Rabbi Nachman’s bones

By Mordechai Beck, September 12, 2008

The campaign to bring the remains of the Chasidic master, Rabbi Nachman of Breslov, from the Ukraine to Israel



Gerald Cromer

By Mordechai Beck, May 2, 2008

Born London, December 23, 1944.
Died Jerusalem, March 30, 2008, aged 63.

A dynamic personality, Professor Gerald Cromer combined academic study with deep concern for social justice, writes Mordechai Beck.

After Hasmonean Grammar School for boys in London, he spent his gap year at Gateshead Yeshivah before studying sociology at the London School of Economics. He studied for his PhD under Professor Julius Gould of Nottingham University.