NAME: Barhum Morris

LEHI ALIAS: Avidan

DATE OF BIRTH: 1930

Morris was born  1930 to his parents Farcha and Morad in Baghdad Iraq. His father, a train engineer, spoke many languages, and also worked as a language teacher. His mother was a housewife. The family, nationalist traditionalist, made Aliyah 1934 from Zionist motives with their two children; five more were born in Israel.

They  resided in a small shed without electricity in Petach-Tikva; during the murderous riots of 1936, they lived in fear of the Arab rioters. His father worked as a surveyor’s assistant while his mother  took care of their seven children.  Morris studied at Talmud-Torah ‘She’erit-Yisrael’, afterwards at ‘Pika’ elementary school. Aged 14 he went to work, to help his family’s income. He joined Beitar at 15 and Lehi at the end of 1946 with no objection from his nationalistic parents. At first he was  pasting up info-bulletins and distributing info-material, afterwards  guarding at positions, with a personal weapon in Petach-Tikva region. After a few months he was transferred to Zichron-Ya’acov, undergoing field training and a Field Commander’s Course. He was put in charge of the food and medicine storage at ‘Sha’ariyah’ neighbourhood. At Tel-Litvinsky he instructed training, including weapons handling, and also went on patrols and attack operations on the British military base there. In one such operation he and his comrades were injured and transferred to “Freund” Hospital Tel-Aviv. He participated in vehicle confiscation operations for the underground’s use; some of these were sent to besieged Jerusalem. Later, at Sheikh-Munis Base, he joined the IDF, and participated in the 82nd Battalion’s battles at Yahud, Lod, and villages in that region. Following the “Altalena Affair”, he defected from the army with a few friends. When he returned he served with the Transport Corps. After discharge he worked as a civilian transporting tanks, later as  driver and construction supervisor in the Ministry of Interior. Due to a heart-condition, he resigned. He married Ziona  Shamur 1951, whom he’d recruited to Lehi 1946. They had three children who served in top army positions. They have five grandchildren. They’ve lived in Petach-Tikva many years.

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