A Colleague's Tribute
article number

Moshe Sharett: a Colleague's Tribute

David HaCohen

Jerusalem Post, 6/8/1965


Tomorrow is the end of the 30 days' period of mourning for Moshe Sharett. Below we publish a tribute to him by Mr. David Hacohen, MK. It was paid at the special Knesset memorial session held on the seventh day after the Zionist leader's dearth. The letter by Mr. Sharett on this page was among the many letters he wrote during the last months of his life (letter in separate article – ed.)


It is with heavy mourning that nothing can dispel that I rise to eulogize a dear and glorious comrade and brother. He wrote his life large, beginning in those days when he was the first among the boys of Tel Aviv's Herzliya Secondary School in its early years, and through more than five decades marked by talented achievements and noble character.

Moshe Sharett's numerous achievements stemmed first and foremost from his unusual talents, his diligence and persistence, and a rare blend of such varied traits as a warm heart and a clear mind, human honesty and a broad knowledge. His home laid the foundation for these: he owed much to his father, Yaacov Shertok, a high-minded and thoroughly educated member of the Bilu, to his exemplary teacher-mother, to his sisters and brother. And, later, to his school friends Dov Hoz and Eliahu Golomb - later to marry into the family - who collaborated with him in the sacred nation building task, as he stated in the dedication of his [book] At the Gates of the Nations.

The personality of the gifted boy from Kherson gained depth and scope with the years by dint of study, devotion and hard work. At home with the fellah boys of the Arab village of Ein Sinia, who regarded him as one of themselves, he was to become the respected equal of leaders like Berl Katznelson and Chaim Weizmann, and ultimately one of the great builders of our State, leader, and devoted servant of his people at home and abroad.

He was that people's foremost spokesman in the councils of the nation, where he carried aloft the standard of our great political campaigns with cool judgment. Every retreat dictated to him by circumstances was to him a mere tactical move and an occasion for consolidating gains until a new opportunity should present itself. He never despaired or gave up hope. An eminent illustration was provided by the [Knesset] Speaker when he cited the tenacious step-by-step struggle that Sharett waged to get the British to approve the idea of a unit of Palestine volunteers to fight in the war against Hitler – a struggle which justifiably earned him the title of Father of the Jewish Brigade and the spiritual godfather of thousands of men and women volunteers. He waged many other such campaigns, mainly in the field of our foreign relations.

I was privileged to watch from close up one of the many campaigns he waged on that front - not historically fateful, perhaps, but characteristic of the way in which he could muster his every spiritual resource and brilliant talent to do battle and repel every onslaught on the good name of Israel. It was at the Socialist Conference of the Peoples of Asia which Sharett, Reuven Barkatt, Yona Kesse, Rachel Tzabari and myself attended on behalf of Mapai in Bombay< ...

Copy Shortcut