NAME: Zironi Binyamin



DATE OF DEATH: 14 November, 2008

Binyamin Zironi son of Shoshana and Ya’akov-Zvi was born in 1913. He made aliya to Israel in 1925. In October 1930, while still in high school, he was arrested for being a member of Brit Habiryonim together with Abba Ahimeir, Moshe Segal and three other members at a protest against Deputy Minister of the Colonies Dr. Shiels, in Tel Aviv. They were the first arrested in the fight for independence and against British activity.

After a while, Binyamin joined the Etzel. He served as Deputy Commander of Haifa when Hanoch Kali commanded the district, and later became District Commander. He planned retaliation operations in the city. In the summer of 1939, he took command of Jerusalem, was captured and tortured. Binyamin escaped his arrest and at Yair’s order was moved to Tel Aviv in the trunk of a car. After the capture of Etzel command members on the night of August 31st, 1940, Binyamin became the acting head of HQ, until the release of David Raziel at the end of October. In September, Zironi tried to prevent Raziel from announcing a ceasefire with the British.

In June 1940, when the other members of the Etzel HQ were released from custody, the organization split. Members Aharon Haichman and Haim Lubinsky resigned, and members Yair and Hanoch Kali joined Zironi to the first command center of the underground to be known as Lehi. Binyamin was appointed in charge of Operations. Among other things, Binyamin planned the confiscation of funds from the Anglo-Palestine Bank on Ben Yehuda Street in Tel Aviv on September 16, 1940.

The command center operated for about a year. Binyamin was uncomfortable under Yair’s command. He thought Yair was an intellectual and not an actions man and asked to replace him as head of command. Binyamin and Kali also negotiated with senior Etzel members to return Lehi member to the ranks of the Etzel. In the fall of 1941, Lehi commanders restricted access for Binyamin and Kali, and they were forced to leave. However, when the British persecuted Yair’s men in the winter of 1942, Zironi and Kali were part of the Wanted list. In early February 1942, a week before Yair was murdered, Kali and Binyamin surrendered to the police. Binyamin was detained in Israel and Africa – where he was among those who planned the great escape from the detention camp – and he returned to Israel only after the independence of Israel, when he enlisted in the IDF.

Binyamin died on November 14th, 2008, and was laid to rest in Yarkon cemetery.