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Josef Ben Eliezer

Josef Ben Eliezer
  • Holocaust Survivor
  • Soldier
  • Peacemaker
Josef Ben-Eliezer (1929 –2013) was born in Germany to a Jewish family. As a child he witnessed Hitler’s assault on Poland and fled east to the Soviet Union, only to be exiled to Siberia. Barely escaping with his life from starvation and disease, he made his way across southern Asia and finally arrived in the land of Israel. After the horror of the Holocaust, Ben-Eliezer was determined to fight for the independence of his new homeland. But as a soldier, the inhumanity of war continued to pursue him, along with the question: Why can’t men and women live together in peace? Ben-Eliezer eventually found his answer in Jesus and his simple but radical teachings about the kingdom of God. He continued, throughout his life, to reach out to others who were grappling with the great questions of life – for instance, how to be an effective peacemaker, or how to build a just society. He never forgot the deprivation and desperate searching of his own youth, and had compassion for every person embroiled in any struggle. Josef Ben-Eliezer recounts his dramatic life story in a memoir, My Search.