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Aganah Fails to Break “old City” Blockade; Irgunists Rescue Captured Member

January 9, 1948
See Original Daily Bulletin From This Date

The Irgun Zvai Leumi, in a daring action, today, rescued one of its wounded members the had been captured after yesterday’s bomb attack on Arabs blockading the Jaffa Gate.

The injured youth, Uri Cohen, was lying in a first aid station guarded by a heavy detachment of police when seven Jews arrived in the area in a limousine and ?nonchalantly walked in the back entrance of the building. They took Cohen out of his bed and placed him on a stretcher then walked out the front door past several policemen and entered the car which was waiting for them. The police are still researching for them.

The rescue of Cohen brought to two the number of Jaffa Gate raiders who escaped the British police after the blast yesterday. Three of the Irgunists died in a subsequent gun battle with surrounding British troops and police. An official estimate placed the casualties in yesterday’s bombing at 17 Arabs dead and 36 wounded.

In addition, the government communique said that 15 persons died in various shootings between Haifa in the north and Gaza in the south and between Tel Aviv and Jerusalem.

In Jerusalem the Haganah made en abortive attempt to crash though the Arab road blockade sealing off some 4,000 Jews in the Old City. The attempt to run in a large convoy of supplies to the area, which has been completely surrounded since last Friday, was spotted by Arab snipers who opened fire. Jews from positions in a ?nearby Jewish quarter laid down a withering cover five, including mortar shells, but it was not effective.

British troops soon entered the picture, raking all entrenched positions, with particular emphasis on the Haganah. Jewish and Arab casualties are believed to have been heavy in the shooting which broke out at spasmodic internal all afternoon, and at least one Briton is known to have died from bullet wounds.

In isolated incidents two Jews were killed in this city today. Michael Adler, a truck driver, was shot and killed near the railroad station while driving his vehicle, while Yehuda Nathan, another truck driver, was killed by a bullet when he stepped down from his cab in Security Zone A.


For the third day in a row the Haganah repulsed heavy Arab raids on the Jewish suburb of Mekor Hayim. One Jewish settlement policeman was injured. After the shooting died down British troops arrived on the scene, arrested twelve Haganah members and confiscated their arms.

Michael Klitchon, a non-Jewish Ukrainian who had fled Poland, was shot and killed by three Jews while sitting in a Jerusalem cafe this morning. Later it was learned that the Stern Group had “executed” him because he was acting as an informer for the Criminal Investigation Division and because it had pictorial evidence proving his collaboration with the Nazis in Europe.

At least one Jew was killed and seven wounded when Arabs attempting to cut the Haifa-Tel Aviv coastal highway opened fire on a Jewish convoy consisting of buses and passenger automobiles. The attack took place near Tireh, on the outskirts of Haifa. The dead man was Ezra Weiss, 20.

In the port city itself, British troops in armored cars and Arab and Jewish police stood guard while about 1,000 Arab and Jewish workers returned to their jobs at the Consolidated Refineries, scene of the lynching of 41 Jews last December 30, after an Irgunist threw a bomb into a crowd of Arab laborers, killing six.


The Tel Aviv-Jaffa area and the surrounding countryside was the scene of new outbreaks today and tonight. Shmuel Zabara, 23, was killed and a woman and a child, both unidentified, were wounded when Arab snipers from Jaffa opened up on Tel Aviv after dusk, Earlier in the day, troops blew up an Arab house in the Manshieh quarter of Jaffa, which had been used as a snipers’ firing post. Soldiers escorting a labor gang of the Palestine Electrical Corporation engaged in an exchange of shots with Arabs in the Salameh quarter of Jaffa when they were fired upon.

Holon, a short distance from Tel Aviv, which has been the target of many attacks in the past month came under Arab fire again today after a two-day lull. Haganah reinforcements engaged the Arabs, losing one man, Ahron Weiss, 23m, while several Arabs were killed. Another attack was beaten off at Bat Yam, south of Jaffa.

The Haganah blew up an Arab home in Beit Dajan, near Remleh, in reprisal for the Arabs having blasted a Jewish house and killed a Jewish watchman in the vicinity. The body of an unidentified Jew was found near kfar Saba, north east of Tel Aviv, this morning.

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