The Mossad's People
Yehuda Arazi (Tennenbaum) — code name "Alon".
Arazi was born in 1907 in Lvov Poland. He immigrated with his parents to Tel-Aviv in 1923, and studied in Herzliya Hebrew High School. He joined the "Haganah" while still in school, and after that enlisted to the Palestine British Police in 1927, following the orders of Golomb (The Hagana Commandor). In a short time he got the rank of Captain and became the officer in charge of the Political department. Using his rank and position he transmitted information and arms to his comrades in the Haganah. Arazi was appointed as the investigating officer in the Arlozorov murder case in 1933. In his opinion the Jewish suspect, Avraham Stavasky, the revisionist, was innocent. This opinion caused a split between Arazi and the Haganah, so he left the Police.
Arazi started to work for "Pardess" a firm exporting Jaffa oranges and went with his family to Poland in 1935. There he made connections with Polish army and bought weapons for the Haggnah it and smuggled it into Palestine. At the break out of WW II (September 1939) he and his family escaped back to Palestine.
Arazi joined the intelligence unit of the Haganah. From 1940 onwards he was involved in the "partnership" between the Haganah and the British army making plans for sabotage behind Nazi lines. Yet he continued to smuggle weapons from the British army. In 1943 the British started to suspect him and he had to escape and hide for 2 years.
In 1945 he was smuggled into Italy, and commanded the Mossad "station" over there. He sent 20 ships with 26,000 "illegal" immigrants to Palestine. One of the most known affairs was "La Spacia", involving two ships "Eliyahu Golomb" and "Dov Hoz" with 1,014 holocaust survivors on board. The British didn't allow them to leave the port and sail to Palestine, so Arazi organized a hunger strike. The sympathy of the people of La Spazia and world press caused the British government to let the ships sail, and they arrived in Haifa on August 1946. Arazi and the La Spacia affair gave the inspiration to Leon Uris for the character of Ari Ben Cnan in his book "Exodus"
After 1948 he became a private businessman, mainly in tourist business and built the Ramat-Aviv Hotel.
Arazi was married and a father to a daughter and a son. He died form cancer at the age of 51, in 1959.
Yael Rozman wrote a book about Arazi "King of Ruses, story of Yehuda Arazi" 1995.
Joshef Barpal — Code name "Kadmon" (antique).
Born in Odessa Russia 1896. After the revolution, escaped with his young bride Sima to Rumania, and was among the organizers of the Halutz (Pioneer) movement. In 1923 his wife and son Uri made "Aliya", and he remained behind for 2 more years participating in "Halutz" activity in Rumania, smuggling Jews out of Russia.
Barfal joined his wife in Israel and together they moved to Kibbutz Ramat David, there his daughter was born. He became the secretary of the Kibbutz and among the founders of "Mekorot" (National Water Company).
In 1934 together with Brganiski organized the first ship "Vallus", that took 350 pioneers disguised as students on a summer sailing, they were put ashore at Kfar Vitkin —Israel. The second sailing of "Vallus" was a failure and the pioneers had to return to Europe.
Barpal was considered the senior Mossad activist till Shaul Avigor became the commander of the Mossad in 1939. During the years 1940-48 he served as second in command and treasurer of the Mossad.
His son Uri, a soldier in the Jewish brigade joined Arazi's "band' in Italy and was Arazi's and Ada Sereni's driver.
After 1948 he joined Zim (Israeli National ship Lines) and was general manager (after Shind death) and latter director of ZIM.
Sima Barpal's first wife died in 1945 and after many years he remarried his sister-in - law Gila.
Barpal died in 1972.
Yehuda (Julek) Brganiski — Code name "Shimon".
Born in 1897 in Russia. He was forced to enlist to the Red Army during the revolution, deserted, and became a smuggler for the "Dror" (Freedom) movement, smuggling out Jews from Russia to Poland. Then he moved to Poland and in the 20's he was one of the founders of the "Halutz" Pioneer movement. He was also a Member of the Zionist Congress Executive.
In 1930 Brganiski immigrated to Palestine and joined kibbutz Yagur. Politically he belonged to "Achdut Ha-avoda" led by Tabenkin's adherents that were opponents of Ben-Gurion.
In 1934 he was sent as an envoy of the "Halutz" to Poland, together with his spouse Batia, and became a key-man of the illegal immigration. He organized the first illegal ship "Vallus" in 1934.
In 1939 he helped Arazi smuggling arms from Poland to Israel and during the years 1941-44 he helped recruiting and training the Israeli "Parachutists" that were sent behind Nazi lines trying to help Jews.
During 1945-48 he continued working in the Mossad Headquaters in Paris
Brganiski continued working with "Olim' (immigrants) during the 50's. He headed the Absorption department in the Jewish Agency, and in 1955 made a trip to Morocco. He went against the "selection" policy, saying that the Jewish Agency should get all the Jewish community out of Morocco.
He wrote 3 memoir books: "A People Striving for a Shore", "Like a mole in the mountains" and "A Diaspora in Distress",
Brganiski was married to Mania. They came together to Israel and to Kibbutz Yagur. She was the mother of his son Izthak Bitan.
His spouse in Kibbutz Givat Hasholsha was Batia, and the two had a son, Nimrod Bari, that was born in Paris, September 1939
He died in 1979.
Zeav Shind — Code name "Dani".
Shind was born in 1908 in Poland, came to Israel in 1929 and was a member of Kibbutz Aylet Hashahar. In 1937 he was the first recruit to join Brganiski and Levi Shwartz in organizing the "Ha'apala" (Illegal Immigration to Palestine). This crew was the first core of the Mossad for Aliya Beth. During 1942-44 Shind was in Istanbul in the Rescue Committee of the Jewish Agency. This committee was in contact with the Jewish congregations in the Nazi occupied territories and developed on saving operations.
During 45-48 he was in USA and bought ships, among them the "Exodus" and "Haim Arlozerov".
After Israel Independence in 1948, he became the general manager of "ZIM" (Israel Shipping Company). In 1952 he was the general manager of the Defense Ministry and after a short time he returned to mange ZIM again.
He was married to Hava and had one daughter, Hagit.
He died 1954 at the age 46.
Shmarya Zamerth — Code name "Zlopah" (Eel) and "Miyohas" (the privileged). He was born in USA in 1910. His father a Zionist activist that escaped from Russia to USA after the 1905 revolution dreamt all is life to immigrate to Israel. In 1920 he and his 10 year-old son, Shmarya, visited Palestine (Israel). In 1926, after his father's death, 16 year-old Shmarya made "Aliya" on his own, studied at Herzliya Hebrew High School in Tel Aviv, and was active in the "Hebraic speak Hebrew" movement.
He joined the Mahanot Ha-olim youth Movement and went to a kibbutz. After a short visit to USA he returned with the awareness that Israel and the Kibbutz pioneer way of life were the best choice for him.
In 1939 he was enlisted into the Mossad. His American passport allowed him free movement in Europe, better than the other Mossad activists. In 1940 he bought the Darien ship for the Mossad.
During the years1941-45 he was undercover. The Mossad sent him to Italy in 1945 as a cultural sergeant in the Jewish Brigade and from there he sent the first Haapala ships, "Dalin" with 37 illegal immigrants, "Peter A" with 170 and "Peter B" with 174. The British uncovered his disguise and he had to escape to the headquarters of the Mossad in Milan. But over there he didn't get along with Arazi.
He went to France and became the commander of Marseilles "station" in the years 1945-48 and was responsible for the loading of the "Exodus" in 1947.
Shmarya was married to Hadasa and had 4 children.
He died in 1965, in a work accident at the olive factory of his Kibutz, Beit-Hashita.