Thursday, January 16, 2020

An Academic, Betar and the Jews of Shanghai

I asked Steven Hochstadt if in his new book on Jewish life in Shanghai he edited there is mention of Betar and/or the Revisionists.

He replied

I'm not sure if you saw that I replied in the comment space to my article, but here it is again. The new book, A Century of Jewish Life in Shanghai, is a collection of articles about all the Jewish communities in Shanghai. I'm afraid there is nothing about Betar, although I know that a number of younger Jews in Shanghai joined that group before they went to Israel.

Within five minutes of a Google search, I sent him this:


Odd.
The Jews of China: v. 1: Historical and Comparative Perspectives by Jonathan Goldstein and Benjamin I. Schwartz from p. 75
https://dbs.bh.org.il/image/betar-members-at-the-jewish-club-shanghai-china-1934 - picture and summary
https://kehilalinks.jewishgen.org/harbin/My_China_Chapter_3.htm  - passing mentions
My China: Jewish Life in the Orient, 1900-1950 By Yaʼacov Liberman  p.  122
http://en.jabotinsky.org/archive/search-archive/item/?itemId=101067  - picture
https://collections.ushmm.org/search/catalog/pa1146785 - picture
and that's a 5 minute Google search.
Did you search the Jabotinsky Institute archives?

And there's more.






Much more.

A book (!) on Betar in China.

Sigh.

UPDATE

I think this is amazing:


Danny Rosing
Betar in Sydney, Australia, was started by Betarim from Shanghai and Tientsin who came there from China in the 1950's, after the communist takeover of China. Betar apparently was the only Zionist youth movement in China.

I joined Betar in Sydney in 1953 after meeting some of these Betarim from China at the University of Sydney. 

Since leaving Palestine at the age of 10 I knew I would return one day but I was not a Zionist, most of my friends were not Jewish and I did not feel I had much in common with the Jewish community; but then one day, at the university, I overheard this group of strange students who were discussing what was going on in Israel and they knew more about my country than I did, So I asked them how they knew so much about Israel and they told me they had lately come from China where they grew up in Betar and, if I wanted to hear more, I should come to the Betar meeting on Sunday, which I did, out of curiosity.

The girls were beautiful, there was a heated discussion about whether Yasha Heifetz should have played Wagner in Israel and then we played soccer.

What else could an 18 year old Israeli want?

So I kept coming to the Betar meetings, when 70% of the members were ex Shanghai and Tientsin Betarim


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