Sunday 15 January 2017


MOYSHE COHEN (November 30, 1881-February 7, 1952)
            He was born in Pleshchenitse (Plescanicy), near Borisov, Byelorussia, into a rabbinical family.  He studied in religious elementary school and with his father—and secular subject matter on his own.  From 1902 he was general secretary of Mizrachi in Russia, Lithuania, and Vilna region.  He was a member of the Odessa Council of the Mizrachi party.  Until 1912 he worked as a Hebrew teacher in Shavel (Šiauliai) and in the Lida yeshiva of Rabbi Reynes, with whom he put together the Yiddish and Hebrew calls for religious Zionist work in Tsarist Russia.  From 1923 he was living in Kovno, where he was a member of the national council of Lithuanian Jewry and one of the leaders of the Council of Communities.  In 1935 he made aliya to Israel.  He published articles in: Hamelits (The advocate), Hatsfira (The siren), Haam (The people), Hashela (The weapon), Der yud (The Jew) in Warsaw-Cracow, and Hamizraḥi (The Mizrachi) in Vilna (1903).  He was the founder and editor of Unzer fraynd (Our friend) in Vilna (1921-1923); and he contributed as well to Di idishe shtime (The Jewish voice), Had lita (Echo of Lithuania), Netivot (Pathways), and Olamenu (Our world)—in Kovno (1923-1935).  In Israel he was a contributor to: Haarets (The land), Davar (Word), Hatsofe (The spectator), Haolam (The world), Sinai (Sinai), and Haoved hatsiyoni (The Zionist laborer), among others.  He died in Jerusalem.

Sources: Yitsḥak Broydes, Vilna hatsiyonit veaskaneha, agadot yerusholaim delita (Zionist Vilna and public service, tales of Jerusalem of Lithuania) (Tel Aviv, 1939), see index; Sefer haishim (Biographical dictionary) (Tel Aviv, 1936/1937), pp. 275-76; L. Shimoni, in Lite (Lithuania), vol. 1 (New York, 1951), pp. 259-71; N. Y. Gotlib, in Lite, p. 1111; N. Grinblat, in Lite, p. 1114; D. Tidhar, in Entsiklopedyah leḥalutse hayishuv uvonav (Encyclopedia of the pioneers and builders of the yishuv), vol. 2 (Tel Aviv, 1947), p. 791.
Khayim Leyb Fuks

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