Netanyahu’s Father-In-Law Dies At 97


shmuel-ben-artziShmuel Ben-Artzi, the father of Prime Minister Bibi Netanyahu’s wife Sara, died this morning at the Hadassah Ein Kerem Medical Center in Yerushalayim at the age of 97.

The prime minister, his wife and their two sons were at his bedside when he died.

An educator, writer and poet, Ben-Artzi was born in Poland and immigrated to Israel in 1933. He served in the Irgun and Haganah organizations, and after the State’s establishment he became a teacher, a school principal and an educator in communities across the country.

His acquaintances described him as a modest, righteous and man, who was admired by his students and inspired them with his sensitivity.

Ben-Artzi had a bachelor’s and master’s degree in Bible studies, literature and Hebrew from the University of Haifa. He published books on Judaism, poetry books, children’s books, a novel and a best-seller called “Novardok.”

In an interview to Yediot Achronot five years ago, Ben-Artzi said he was extremely concerned by what was happening in Israel.

“I live in a world that has passed. In the 1930s and 1940s, everyone built this country and ideals could be felt in the air and on the walls. The main thing was giving and receiving.

“Had I known that this would be the reality in the country, I may not have left the yeshiva. This isn’t my Land of Israel, it’s not the Land of Israel I dreamed of – the murders and bribery and hollow politics.

“Sometimes I wonder where they find the time to engage in politics with the security-related situation being so difficult, as our enemies surround us from all sides and seek to destroy us.”

In the past few months Ben-Artzi has been living in the prime minister’s residence, where his daughter cared for him through his last days. Last year, Ben-Artzi helped his grandson Avner prepare for the National Bible Quiz.

Click here for a video about Ben-Artzi.

{Ynet/ Newscenter}


  1. Was he shomrei Torah umitzvos…seems to be wearing a kippa on picture…just wanted to know. Condolences to the family…
    Seems like he didn’t have too much influence on son-in-law…but who knows…never give up hope

  2. #2 & #4 YES, he also attended Yeshivos in Europe.

    THe Ben-Arti family have other children who are shomer shabbat, anshei sefer and he used to live in Bet El (i think) before joining his daughter Sarah in Yerushalayim.

  3. 8. Comment from pashuter yid
    Time November 9, 2011 at 1:52 PM

    A Yid doesn’t “die”, he “passed away” to the olam ho’elyon.


    It’s a very sad day when orthodox Jews are so brainwashed by the olam hachitzon that they prefer to use undertakers’ euphemisms, such as “passed away” rather than the good, old-fashioned (a correct) “die”.

  4. he was a novordaker who went off when he was swept away by the fake zionist nonsense. some of his children returned and in recent years he, and his daughter Sara as well, have come part of the way back.
    i would advise everyone to read his book about novardok.

  5. Apropos of Novardok, I heard in a recent drashah that the Alter of Novardok said (in response to a question of whether someone who learned in Novardok could go off the derech), that yes, a talmid who learned in Novardok could go off the derech, BUT everytime he would do an aveirah, he won’t enjoy it. That was the strength of the Novardok limud. Unfortunately, we don’t have such hasagos today, it’s lost from us.