From the Archive: A triple kidnapping, in 1938 Palestine


The recent kidnapping and murder of three Israeli teens was a national trauma for Israelis that set off the current conflagration.

Nearly eight decades ago, there was another abduction with some eerie parallels.

In 1938, three young Jews — two in their teens, one in his 20s — were kidnapped from the Jewish community of Givath Ada in British Mandate Palestine by an Arab band. Their bodies were found almost two years later in a pit near an Arab village.

Here is the 1940 JTA story:

Bodies of 3 Kidnap Victims Found in Palestine Pit

JERUSALEM (Mar. 29, 1940) — The bodies of three Jewish youths kidnaped by an Arab band in 1938 were discovered today in a pit near the Arab village of Zila, in the Jenin sub-district.

The youths were David Auerbach, 13; Itzhak Krupik, 18, and Jacob Zvang, 24. They were kidnaped on July 23, 1938, from the Jewish colony of Givath Ada. Identification was made through their clothes.

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