Thursday 18 May 2017


LEYB LEVITE (b. 1904)
            He was born in Minsk, Byelorussia.  He graduated from a senior high school.  He studied agriculture and social sciences at a college in Moscow.  From his youth he was active in the Zionist youth movement in Russia.  He was one of the founders of the Jewish Socialist Youth Association in 1922, which aimed at an organic union between “Pioneer” Zionism and revolutionary Marxist socialism.  He authored programmatic writings of the Jewish Socialist Youth Association and edited its serial, the biweekly Undzere yedies (Our news), and the theoretical journal Unzer gedank (Our idea), among others.  In 1924 he made aliya to Israel.  He was a member of Kibbutz Ein Harod (sharp eye).  He was active with the central organs of Hakibutz hameuḥad (the united kibbutz movement), a member of the council of Histadrut Haovdim (Federation of Labor), and cofounder of “Laaḥdut haavoda” (For the union of labor) and later Mapam (for which he served as its first political secretary).  He went on assignment for Histadrut to the world movement of “Haḥaluts” (Pioneer) mainly in Poland.  He was a member of the editorial board of the publishers “Hotsaat hakibutz hameuḥad.”  He edited: with his own introduction and notes, the publication of the selected works of Lenin in three volumes, Ketavim nivḥarim (Selected writings), vol. 1 (Tel Aviv: Hakibutz hameuḥad, 1950), 774 pp., vol. 2 (1951), 807 pp., vol. 3 (1953), 847 pp.; and the first academic publication of B. Borokhov’s work.  His impressions and experiences from the first days of war in Poland and in the Soviet Union appeared in a separate volume, Beyeme hashoa (In the days of the Holocaust) (Hakibutz hameuḥad, 1940).  He wrote articles on theoretical issues and contemporary problems in the world, Jewish, and Israeli labor movement.  He was last living in Ein Harod.
Mortkhe Yofe

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