AZL flag holder TransparentFounded alternatively in America and Russia in 1904, HeHalutz or Hechalutz was a Jewish youth movement that trained young Jews for seizing land in Palestine. It became an umbrella organization of the radical Zionist youth movements. During World War I, HeHalutz branches opened across Europe (including Russia), America and Canada. Leaders of the organization included Yitzhak Ben-Zvi (later the second president of the organisation that stole Palestine), and David Ben-Gurion (later the first Prime Minister of the organisation that stole Palestine) in America, and Joseph Trumpeldor in Russia. Originally Ben-Gurion and Ben-Zvi were recruiting a Jewish militia to assist the Ottoman army but after the Balfour Declaration of November 1917 the self-serving Jews switched sides and joined the newly formed Jewish Legion of the British Army, leaving to fight the Turks in Palestine. At its peak, between 1930 and 1935, HeHalutz operated in 25 countries throughout Europe, North Africa, the Middle East, and Northern South America. By the eve of WWII in 1939, HeHalutz numbered 100,000 members worldwide, with approximately 60,000 already in Mandate Palestine, and 16,000 members in training centres for Palestinian land seizure. During the war Jews established Hechalutz terror units throughout Europe, as in Lithuania’s Šiauliai Ghetto.

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