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Lot 9

Fascinating Personal Diary of a Member of the Immigrant Camps. Tel Aviv, 1944-1947

Handwritten personal diary of a girl. 84 notebook pages full of descriptions of the atmosphere and reflections of the life of a girl named Shalva, a refugee in the immigrant camps when she was only 15 years old.

A fascinating diary full of rich content written in fascinating language, considering it was written by a girl only 15 years old.

The diary was written in a daily sequence with a precise date every time she wrote. It was written in a personal and emotional tone, and expresses in practice all the significant events the girl underwent during her stay in the camps. The diary includes entire excerpts of her relationships with other immigrants, relationships with friends, daily life, poetic pieces, reactions to political events and the development of the Jewish settlement in the Land of Israel, expressing a subjective opinion of the various events. She wrote the diary continuously for a period of three years [with short breaks] while staying at the immigrant camps in Tel Aviv in the years 1944-1947.

Among the passages you can find, for example, excerpts of admiration for Hannah Szenes; a description of Maccabi sports events, a story about a Viennese speech about the cancellation of the "White paper;" descriptions of childish pranks; participation in pioneering activities [making wilderness bloom, raising cattle, etc.]; personal descriptions of the training activities in which they participated, and more.

The girl expresses her opinions impartially and in a critical and smooth manner, for example, describing her attitude to the Poles: "I hate them to death, to see them day after day, hour after hour, alive in their guttural language, to see them satisfied and dressed in glory, and to remember that at the same time, our brothers are sitting in detention camps hungry and trembling from cold, it is impossible to bear! To see them walking upright and carrying their "Polishness" on high... to remember that 20,000 Poles take the place of 20,000 Jews rotting in sorrow ... ").

Thus, for example, she expresses her opinion about the White Paper: "War against the "White Paper" ... We remain in the situation of being imprisoned in a Palestinian ghetto ... The very act of declaring the White Paper itself is disgraceful and constitutes a betrayal of the Balfour Declaration's promise to support a Jewish national home in the Land of Israel... We must open our eyes and see that we can't be a Jewish minority in the land. After the years of 1933-46, years of annihilation of European Jewry, the time of the Jews of England, America, and Russia will also come, we must not delude ourselves that it was mere chance, and will be no more. It's a conclusive fact that as long as the people of Israel does not dwell on their land, they will be destroyed and become extinct from the face of the earth ... The knife will finally reach our throats as well, because this sword is upon our throats!!!"

There are passages relating to the Holocaust and the situation of She'erith Hapleitah's children upon their arrival in Israel: "Before me is Chaya'leh, a girl of about thirteen and a half, short of stature, with broad shoulders and a swollen body and a stomach like a woman in her sixth month of pregnancy. She spent three years in the snowy forests and ate herbs and leaves. And now she has come to the land. It will take a long time for her to return to full strength, her face is quite old and attests to the many hardships that have come upon her... Here is one who saw his family members slaughtered before his eyes, who managed to escape just in time through the window due to his great resemblance to an Aryan boy, and he came to the land." And more.

Among the descriptions of personal experiences is an interesting description of a trip to Massada: "Massada!" This was the highlight of the trip, but as we approached, we were immediately overcome by holy awe at the "heroism of the last ones on the wall." We immediately felt ourselves in the presence of heroes fighting for their dignity 2,000 years ago. We are the continuation of the chain, additional links in the chain of heroism ... Masada! We can see the symbol of a war of true Jewish freedom... a symbol of the independence of life ... and so they planted a vision of a free and independent Jewish future working and fighting for its existence... One day we will remove the curse of the generations crouching on the desert!" As well as descriptions of the May Day celebrations: "Yesterday we celebrated May Day, the working class demonstrated its strength. Blue and red captured the city's streets spectacularly... red and white-colored flags were on their own, singing was heard in the streets of the city, free singing, pride."

In addition, there are critical passages in her diary about the leadership of the Yishuv in Israel about their disregard of the immigrants who immigrated to Israel: "A ship of 5000 children is encamped outside the gates of the country and cannot enter... In Atlit, 500 children became ill with scarlet fever, did anyone in the Yishuv know of this? Did someone come to demand help and deal with the deceased? Claim that you did not know, they did not tell you! Were you interested? Did you know about the families of refugees living in public shelters? You did not want to know! The complacency and denial of the Yishuv stuck to you! ... Now that we have arisen to make all our efforts to save She'erith Hapleitah, all the channels of rescue have been shut down ... Have all the ties of mercy and closeness to these brethren of the destroyed Diaspora been overcome? Will we actually come to desire to return to the countries of exile to seek refuge in vain given no alternative?". And more.

After three years of writing, Shalva gave the diary to a friend of hers named 'Nava'. The title page reads: "Nava! An inheritance from Shalva after she has become tired of writing it, enjoy it but only on your own. You hear?!" At the end of the notebook is the play "Faust" by Goethe, in her handwriting.

84 pages written on both sides. 21 cm. An eloquent and easily-read script.

Good condition.