NAME: Levinger, Meir


DATE OF BIRTH: December 15, 1926

DATE FALLEN: November 9, 1948

Meir was born on December 15,1926 in the city of Galanta, Czechoslovakia (now Slovakia), to Mordechai and Leah. His parents were dedicated Zionists. The father decided to travel to the Land of Israel and to prepare for the family’s arrival. He made aliyah in 1933, and a year after that he brought up the rest of the family. Meir was six when he reached the Land of Israel with his mother, two brothers and a sister.

In Israel, he completed elementary school. The economic situation in the Land of Israel was extremely difficult for everyone, including his family, and as the firstborn of the family, he felt a need to help support his household. Thus he resolved to stop his studies and dedicate himself to the family’s finances. He began working in the diamond industry, learning the trade of polishing. At age eighteen, his desire to see a Jewish state in the Land of Israel led him to join the Hagana. However, the impotence of this movement and its cooperation with the British during the Saison led him to join Lehi.

Meir became very involved with the underground, being known for his dedication and courage. He was thin and tall, with golden hair, and he was even nicknamed “The Tall Blond.” He was fearless and aggressive in operations, but friendly with his comrades and subordinates. He was trained in weaponry and demolitions, and he was involved in many operations throughout the country, from robbing Discount Bank in Tel Aviv, to assassinating Martin of the CID in Haifa, to blowing up the headquarters of the Arab gangs on Stanton Street in Haifa (Meir was disguised as a British soldier in this operation). At one time, he was arrested by the British, but after his interrogation, he was released due to a lack of evidence.

After the State was established and the IDF created, Meir joined it, together with his underground comrades, to Battalion 82 of the 8th Brigade, along with the other Lehi members enlisting. He became a platoon commander with the rank of lieutenant, and he participated in Operation Danny and in the capture of the Lod Airport. He then went out to clear out the villages in the area. He also participated in opening the road to the Negev, capturing Beersheba and taking the Iraq Suwaydan police fort. Afterwards, he turned toward the Suwaydan village, despite heavy shelling. His half-track was shelled, and Meir and his comrades were killed, on November 9,1948.

Meir was buried in the Kfar Warburg Military Cemetery. He was twenty-two years old.