views updated


MAKLEFF , family of Ereẓ Israel pioneers.

aryeh leib makleff (1876–1929)> was born in the Grodno district of Russian Poland and settled in Ereẓ Israel in 1891. At the age of 18 he moved from Jerusalem to Petaḥ Tikvah and worked on his brother's land. Eventually he settled in Moẓa and put many years of labor into the vineyard planted by his father-in-law Yehiel Chemerinski, one of the founders of the Maḥaneh Yehudah quarter in Jerusalem. As an agricultural expert he was instrumental in choosing the land for Ḥuldah before the Jewish National Fund purchased it. For 25 years his home was the center of the settlement of Moẓa. During the riots of 1929, the sheikh of the nearby Arab village, Qālūnya, promised him that Moẓa would not be attacked. Nonetheless, the settlement was stormed by its Arab neighbors, and Makleff was killed along with his wife, batyah Ḥayyah (b. in Jerusalem, 1877); his son, avraham (b. 1907); and his daughters minnah (b. 1905) and rivkah (b. 1910).

mordechai makleff (1920–1978), Aryeh Leib's youngest son, survived the slaughter of his family by taking shelter in a neighbor's home and grew up to become chief of staff of the Israel Defense Forces. Born in Jerusalem, he received a religious education and graduated from the Reali school in Haifa in 1938. He joined the Special Night Squads led by Orde Wingate against Arab terrorists. In 1940 he joined the British army and was sent to officers' school. He saw action in World War ii with the *Jewish Brigade in Italy. In 1948 he was the commanding officer of the Haganah unit that captured Haifa and represented the Haganah in its negotiations with the Arabs of the city. He then took part in the battle for Mishmar ha-Yarden and the lightning operation to capture eastern Galilee. He headed the Israel delegation to the armistice talks with Lebanon and Syria. In 1949 Makleff became assistant chief of staff under Yigael *Yadin, and in 1952 he received the appointment of chief of staff, a post which he held for a period of one year. In 1958 he became managing director of the Dead Sea Works, and ten years later was appointed director of the Citrus Marketing Board of Israel.