Former ‘Post’ foreign editor Mordecai Chertoff dies

Rabbi Mordecai Chertoff, a former foreign news editor of The Palestine Post and survivor of the February 1948 bombing of the paper’s Jerusalem office, died Sunday at the age of 92.

December 31, 2013 03:10

MORDECAI CHERTOFF. (photo credit: Ariel Jerozolimski)


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A native of New York, Chertoff lived in pre-state Palestine, served in the Hagana while working at the Post and celebrated the May 1948 creation of Israel in downtown Jerusalem.

In 1945, at the age of 24, Chertoff took a sabbatical from rabbinical studies at the Jewish Theological Seminary to travel to Palestine.

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Post editor Gershon Agron hired Chertoff as a copy editor, and soon after, the idealistic Zionist was recruited by the Hagana.

After the establishment of Israel, Chertoff joined the IDF.

He returned to the US in 1951 and was ordained as a Conservative rabbi, serving in congregations in Austin, Texas and Pittsburgh.

Chertoff, who was married twice and had two children, eventually left the pulpit for a career in the World Zionist Organization.

In 2008, Chertoff returned to Israel as a “new” immigrant and lived the rest of his years near his children in Jerusalem, the city he had called home a half-century earlier.

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