Jewish Brigade

The Jewish Brigade (Hebrew: הבריגדה היהודית) was a national Jewish military formation of the British Army that served in Europe during the Second World War. The brigade was established in 1944.


One of the founders was Moshe Sharett, the secretary of the Jewish Agency’s political department. In 1953, Sharett was elected as the second Prime Minister of Israel.

The Jewish Brigade comprised of 5,000 soldiers from Eretz Yisrael. It consisted of Jewish infantry, artillery and service units. The establishment of the Brigade was the final outcome of prolonged efforts by the Yishuv and the Zionist Movement to achieve recognized participation and representation of the Jewish people in the war against Nazi Germany.

In 1944, the Brigade was training in Egypt and took part in the final battles of World War 2 on the Italian front under the command of the Canadian-born Jew, Brigadier Ernest Benjamin. In 1945, the Brigade moved to North East Italy where it encountered survivors of the Holocaust. The Brigade was also in charge of bringing many of the survivors to Israel.

In 1946, the British authorities decided to disband the Brigade.The Jewish Brigade was a symbol of hope for renewed Jewish life in the Land of Israel.


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