(JTA) — Lord David Young, a British-Jewish member of the House of Lords who advised Conservative governments in the United Kingdom from Margaret Thatcher to David Cameron died on Thursday at the age of 90.
Young also worked as a businessman and ran Jewish charities before and after becoming a favorite fixer for Thatcher in government.
Thatcher, who appointed Young to his first political post, as an advisor in charge of privatization, has famously been quoted saying of him: “Other people bring me problems. David brings me solutions.”
According to Tom Gross, a British journalist and international affairs expert, during his many years in politics, Young also used his position to advance the needs of British Jewry and push for stronger British-Israeli relations.
“David Young did a tremendous amount not just for Britain, but for British Jews and was a significant influence on both Prime Ministers Margaret Thatcher and David Cameron in forming their more favorable impressions of Israel,” Gross told the Jewish Telegraphic Agency.
The grandson of Jewish immigrants from the Russian empire, Young was born in 1932 and grew up in North London’s working class Jewish community. His father Joseph was a flour importer who eventually went into the garment industry.
Young was educated in public schools but dropped out early to become clerk and ultimately a solicitor. Still, he quickly followed his father into the business realm, only practicing law for one year.
In the 1960s he established a group of companies that dealt in everything from industrial real estate to construction. As a successful businessman, he was also heavily involved in Jewish philanthropy.
“Lord Young was always proud of his Jewish heritage, and widely regarded for many years as the leader of the Jewish lay community,” Lord Leigh of Hurley, a longtime senior treasurer of the British Conservative party, told the Telegraph.
By the mid-1970s, he was the chairman of the British arm of ORT, a Jewish charity which promotes education and vocational training around the world. Young was also at various points the president of the Chai Cancer Care organization and the chairman of the Jewish museum of London.
It was his work with ORT, alongside his business career, that put him into the eyes of Thatcher’s government, who appointed him as an advisor in her efforts to further privatize the British economy.
“David Young did not claim to understand politics, but he understood how to make things happen,” Thatcher once said.
By 1981, he was moved from privatization to the organization of the British workforce under the manpower services committee, and by 1984 became a minister without a portfolio, floating from topic to topic to assist the Thatcher cabinet.
According to the Guardian, Thatcher had considered him for the role of chief of staff but ultimately decided he could better serve her with more freedom.
In 1984, Young was also made a “life peer” of the British parliament, styled Baron Young of Graffham, a village an hour south of London where he owned a home. The title gave him a permanent seat in the House of Lords.
After the end of Thatcher’s premiership in 1990, Young took a break from politics and returned to the business realm where he led Cable & Wireless, the first business to seriously challenge British Telecom — today BT Group — as a provider of telephone services.
Young ultimately returned to politics in 2010, after the election of Conservative leader David Cameron. Cameron first appointed Young an advisor on health and safety and later gave him the role of enterprise advisor, tasking him to examine the government’s relationship with small businesses.
Though he long worked for the Conservative party, in his later years, he had no qualms about criticizing their politicians.
According to the Guardian, he called Boris Johnson “very clever, very able but very lazy” and the antithesis of Thatcher. He also said that Cameron lacked “seichel” — a Hebrew word for intelligence — due to his handling of Brexit.
He is survived by his wife, lita and daughter Karen and Judith.
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Dr. NATHAN WISEMAN
Wiseman, Nathan Elliot
1944 – 2023
Nathan, our beloved husband, Dad, and Zaida, died unexpectedly on December 13, 2023. Nathan was born on December 16, 1944, in Winnipeg, MB, the eldest of Sam and Cissie Wiseman’s three children.
He is survived by his loving wife Eva; children Sam (Natalie) and Marni (Shane); grandchildren Jacob, Jonah, Molly, Isabel, Nicole, and Poppy; brother David (Sherrill); sister Barbara (Ron); sister-in-law Agi (Sam) and many cousins, nieces, and nephews.
Nathan grew up in the north end of Winnipeg surrounded by his loving family. He received his MD from the University of Manitoba in 1968, subsequently completed his General Surgery residency at the University of Manitoba and went on to complete a fellowship in Paediatric Surgery at Boston Children’s Hospital of Harvard University. His surgeon teachers and mentors were world renowned experts in the specialty, and even included a Nobel prize winner.
His practice of Paediatric Surgery at Children’s Hospital of Winnipeg spanned almost half a century. He loved his profession and helping patients, even decades later often recounting details about the many kiddies on whom he had operated. Patients and their family members would commonly approach him on the street and say, “Remember me Dr. Wiseman?”. And he did! His true joy was caring for his patients with compassion, patience, unwavering commitment, and excellence. He was a gifted surgeon and leaves a profound legacy. He had no intention of ever fully retiring and operated until his very last day. He felt privileged to have the opportunity to mentor, support and work with colleagues, trainees, nurses, and others health care workers that enriched his day-to-day life and brought him much happiness and fulfillment. He was recognized with many awards and honors throughout his career including serving as Chief of Surgery of Children’s Hospital of Winnipeg, President of the Canadian Association of Pediatric Surgeons, and as a Governor of the American College of Surgeons. Most importantly of all he helped and saved the lives of thousands and thousands of Manitoba children. His impact on the generations of children he cared for, and their families, is truly immeasurable.
Nathan’s passion for golf was ignited during his childhood summers spent at the Winnipeg Beach Golf Course. Southwood Golf and Country Club has been his second home since 1980. His game was excellent and even in his last year he shot under his age twice! He played an honest “play as it lies” game. His golf buddies were true friends and provided him much happiness both on and off the course for over forty years. However, his passion for golf extended well beyond the eighteenth hole. He immersed himself in all aspects of the golf including collecting golf books, antiques, and memorabilia. He was a true scholar of the game, reading golf literature, writing golf poetry, and even rebuilding and repairing antique golf clubs. Unquestionably, his knowledge and passion for the game was limitless.
Nathan approached his many woodworking and workshop projects with zeal and creativity, and he always had many on the go. During the winter he was an avid curler, and in recent years he also enjoyed the study of Yiddish. Nathan never wasted any time and lived his life to the fullest.
Above all, Nathan was a loving husband, father, grandfather, son, father-in-law, son-in-law, uncle, brother, brother-in-law, cousin, and granduncle. He loved his family and lived for them, and this love was reciprocated. He met his wife Eva when he was a 20-year-old medical student, and she was 18 years old. They were happily married for 56 years. They loved each other deeply and limitlessly and were proud of each other’s accomplishments. He loved the life and the family they created together. Nathan was truly the family patriarch, an inspiration and a mentor to his children, grandchildren, nephews, nieces, and many others. He shared his passion for surgery and collecting with his son and was very proud to join his daughter’s medical practice (he loved Thursdays). His six grandchildren were his pride and joy and the centre of his world.
Throughout his life Nathan lived up to the credo “May his memory be a blessing.” His life was a blessing for the countless newborns, infants, toddlers, children, and teenagers who he cared for, for his colleagues, for his friends and especially for his family. We love him so much and there are no words to describe how much he will be missed.
A graveside funeral was held at the Shaarey Zedek cemetery on December 15, 2023. Pallbearers were his loving grandchildren. The family would like to extend their gratitude to Rabbi Yosef Benarroch of Adas Yeshurun Herzlia Congregation.
In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the Children’s Hospital Foundation of Manitoba, in the name of Dr. Nathan Wiseman.
Bill Maher tells it like it is when it comes to what “the river to the sea” really means
Bill Maher cuts to the chase like no one else. Here’s a link to a segment from the most recent episode of “Real Time with Bill Maher” where he exposes the total hypocrisy of the “useful idiots” everywhere chanting “from the river to the sea”: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KP-CRXROorw
Jewish community holds solidarity rally November 25
The Jewish Federation of Winnipeg held a rally in support of Israel on Saturday evening, November 25.
A number of speakers addressed the crowd of 800, including Rabbi Yosef Benarroch of Adas Yeshurun-Herzlia Congregation; Members of Parliament Ben Carr & Marty Morantz; Yolanda Papini-Pollock of Winnipeg Friends of Israel; Paula McPherson, former Brock Corydon teacher; and Gustavo Zentner, President of the Jewish Federation.
Click here to watch Ben Carr’s remarks: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=crfREGNRKfg
Click here to watch a video of Marty Morantz’s remarks: https://studio.youtube.com/video/zHzC-iaqivg/ed
Click here to watch a video of Gustavo Zentner’s remarks: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=L3M_cCYuLgs