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Labor Zionist Spokesman Nahum Guttman Dies At 97

Labor Zionist Spokesman Nahum Guttman Dies At 97

Nahum Guttman, a longtime Zionist leader in the United States who worked with many leaders of both Israel and pre-statehood Palestine, died on Rosh HaShanah, Sept. 9, in his Upper West Side home after a long illness. He was 97.

Mr. Guttman grew up in Brooklyn and Minneapolis, and served as First National Secretary of Habonim, director of public relations for the National Committee for Labor Israel, and editor of The Jewish Frontier.

His parents, ardent Zionists, opened their home in Minneapolis to visiting leaders from Palestine, including future Prime Minister Golda Meir, said Mr. Guttman’s daughter, Naomi Guttman-Pass.

He attended the University of Minnesota and The New School for Social Research, helped set up a training farm in Minnesota for people interested in settling in Israel and served in the U.S. Army during World War II, earning a Bronze Star, in units that liberated Dachau and Buchenwald.

As part of his Zionist work he visited Israel almost every year and met such leaders as David Ben-Gurion and Yitzchak Rabin, “practically everybody,” Guttman-Pass said. His duties included the production of documentary film, the writing of political speeches, and the arranging of pro-Israeli public rallies.
Mr. Guttman retired from the editorship of The Jewish Frontier in 2001.

His wife, Miriam, died three years ago.

Mr. Guttman, a member of West End Synagogue, is survived by his daughter; a son, Joshua and three grandchildren.

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