Teddy Kollek

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Theodore "Teddy" Kollek (1911-2007) was the mayor of Jerusalem from 1965 to 1993.[1]

According to a 1945 British intelligence report, Kollek was the Jewish Agency representative in Turkey at one point during World War Two, until he was replaced by Ehud Uberall.[2]

On 1 October 1945, Kollek called the British Defence Security Officer, Palestine (DSO) and suggested they witness a landing by illegal immigrants. The DSO reported to Brigadier C.D. Roberts at SIME on 10 October: "His invitation needless to say was not in any endeavour to help us to put an end to illegal immigration, but rather more to show us how efficent their organisation was." Kollek again met the DSO on 8 October to defend the settlement of Kfir Gialidi over an altercation with the Transjordan Frontier Force.[2]

A SIME letter of 8 April 1946, concerning Gideon Ruffer, contained the following extract, the only part of the letter yet publicly released:

"You may be interested to know that both Teddy KOLLEK and ZASLANI who are now in Cairo have mentioned on separate occasions to both the Brigadier and myself the offer which they made to MI6. They did not, however, mention Colonel [REDACTED] by name but did indicate in a rather querulous tone that the offer had been turned down...."[2]

Brigadier Roberts replied to Robertson on 20 September, welcoming the proposal to establish contact with Kollek in London, but adding:

I fear, from my knowledge of him, that after the close personal relations that we here maintained with him in the past, he would resent your approaching him through a third party.[2]

On 23 April 1946, the DSO Palestine reported on a conversation with Reuven Zaslani, who stated that he and Kollek were going to London for work of an intelligence nature.[2]

On 4 June 1946, Lieutenant Colonel Maurice Oldfield of SIME reported a recent conversation, in which Kollek had told him he was going to London.[2]

On 5 August 1946, the DSO intercepted a conversation between Zeev Sharf in Jerusalem and Kollek in London. The transcript was passed to SIME and Alex Kellar of MI5 in London.[2]

On 19 September 1946, H.L. Brown of MI5 reported to the Colonial Office information from a 'delicate source' that Kollek had discussed with David Ben-Gurion the possibility of setting up an intelligence office in London separate from the Jewish Agency office at 77 Great Russell Street.[2]

On 23 August 1946, J.C. Robertson, wrote to Kellar at MI5's B3 section stating:

As you are aware SIME and the DSO Palestine have for some time past maintained contact with security officers of the Jewish Agency, such as Reuben Zaslani, Teddy Kollek and - at the present time - Zeev Sharif in the Jerusalem and Eisenstatt in Cairo.[2]

Robertson went on to add that Kollek and Zaslani were anxious to make contact with Brigadier Robertson in London:

Past experience has shown that these Agency security officers choose from time to time to give us valuable information about the activities of the terrorist organisations and it may be that Kollek or Zaslani has such information to give to Roberts. Whether this was so or not, they might at any time in the future be possessed of information of this type, and be anxious to pass it unofficially to some British military security representative.
In view of recent information (much of which has come through the Jewish Agency contact in Jerusalem) about the possibility of the Irgun and the Stern extending their activities to this country, I feel that the time has come when we should seriously consider establishing some form of contact with Kollek or Zaslani in London.[2]

Robertson suggested that because of the danger of penetration associated with such liaison, it should be conducted by a cutout.[2]

In a letter of 10 January 1947, to the DSO Palestine, MI5 head Sir Percy Sillitoe said of Kollek in London, "One of his closest contacts is John Kimche."[3]

External resources


  1. Obituaries- Teddy Kollek, The Independent, 3 January 2007.
  2. 2.00 2.01 2.02 2.03 2.04 2.05 2.06 2.07 2.08 2.09 2.10 National Archives KV 2/2261.
  3. National Archives KV 2/2262.