David Twersky, my colleague from the glory days at the Seth Lipsky-led Forward, has died. David was one of those people who devoted his spirit totally to the cause of progressive Zionism, and his voice will be missed, especially now. Seth Lipsky, writing at The New York Sun, had this to say about David:
We first met him when the staff was being assembled to bring out the Jewish Forward in English. The meeting took place over dinner, where Twersky, then with the American Jewish Congress, told, among other things, of one day in the Bronx when he was a boy and his father sent him to the news-stand for a copy of the Forward, which was then issued daily in Yiddish. The lad raced out and, in a ghastly error, came back with a copy of the Freiheit, the communist paper. His father was so upset that he threw his son out a window. The window part may, or may not, be apocryphal, but it was clear that Twersky had never stopped looking for the right paper.
And then there is memory, which obviously struck a chord with me:
Twersky met with a wide array of people. When a future prime minister of Israel, Ariel Sharon, stopped by the Forward for an editorial meeting, some of the left-of-center veterans exited the building, rather than shake his hand. Twersky came to the meeting and found himself helping the general light a Channukah menorah and down a plate of latkes. Twersky later shook his head in amazement at how much he enjoyed the man he'd so often criticized. He shook his head in a similar astonishment years later, after an editorial dinner of the Sun with Henry Kissinger.
May David's memory be for a blessing.
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