BERL FRIMER (FRYMER) (May 16, 1912-January 19, 1991)
He was born in Timoshgrod (Tomashhorod), Sarne (Sarny), Volhynia. He studied in religious elementary school and later graduated from a Hebrew high school in Kovel (Kovle). In 1936 he graduated from the law faculty of Liège University and received the title of doctor of law. He settled in France. For a time he was active in the Federation of Jewish Associations, the Association of Polish Jews in France, and other groups. From his youth he was involved in the Zionist labor movement, initially with “Hashomer Hatsayir” (The young guard), later with Mapai (Workers’ Party in the Land of Israel), and he was a member of the central committee of the Zionist Action Committee. In 1939, on assignment for the Association of Polish Jews, he traveled to the United States, and until 1946 lived in Chicago. He was secretary of the local section of the Jewish National Labor Alliance, and later until 1952 he served as general secretary of the Labor Zionist party in America. From 1952 he was living in the state of Israel, where he assumed leading positions in Histadruth (Israeli federation of labor). He was director of the culture council, a speaker, and a lecturer. On several occasions, he visited South Africa, the United States, the Soviet Union (1964), and Australia (1965). From 1938 he was publishing articles on Jewish, Zionist, and cultural issues in: Parizer haynt (Paris today) and Unzer vort (Our word) in Paris; Idisher kemfer (Jewish fighter), Tog (Day), Tsukunft (Future), Forverts (Forward), Algemeyne zhurnal (General journal), and Jewish Frontier in New York; Letste nayes (Latest news), Heymish (Familiar), Di goldene keyt (The golden chain), Ikhud olami (World union), Davar (Word), and Hapoal hatsayir (Young worker) in Tel Aviv (he had charge of a column in the last of these dealing with the life of Jews in the diaspora); and Oystralishe yidishe nayes (Australian Jewish news) in Melbourne. His books would include: Yidishe horizontn, eseyen un artiklen (Jewish horizons, essays and articles) (Tel Aviv: Perets Publ., 1978), 444 pp., English version as Jewish Horizons (New York: Cornwall Books, 1983); In fayer fun gesheenishn (In the fire of events), essays and articles (Tel Aviv: Perets Publ., 1981), 301 pp. He died in New York.
Sources: D. Tidhar, in Entsiklopedyah leḥalutse hayishuv uvonav (Encyclopedia of the pioneers and builders of the yishuv), vol. 6 (Tel Aviv, 1955), pp. 2519-20; Sol. Kahan, in Di shtime (Mexico City) (July 30, 1960); D. Krants, in Tog (New York) (October 13, 1960); Y. Atsil, in Keneder odler (Montreal) (December 6, 1960); G. Jacobson, in Tog-morgn-zhurnal (New York) (February 10, 1964); R. Rimun, in Di prese (Buenos Aires) (October 30, 1964); Y. Shperling, in Di idishe post (Melbourne) (April 9, 1965).
Khayim Leyb Fuks
[Additional information from: Berl Kagan, comp., Leksikon fun yidish-shraybers (Biographical dictionary of Yiddish writers) (New York, 1986), col. 456.]