P. 136

The British had detailed lists of those they sought to arrest. For example, when they arrived at Moshe Shertok's Jerusalem home, they did not find him there. Their intelligence sources informed them that he was in Tel Aviv in a small along the coast. A British force arrived at the location, arrested him and transferred him to the Latrun detention camp. Several hours later he was joined by David Remez, Yitzhak Gruenbaum, Dov Yossef and Rabbi Fishman, the latter refusing the get in the British vehicle so as not to violate the sanctity of the Sabbath and was forcefully shoved in none too gently, an act that was widely condemned in the Land of Israel and even the world. Ten other second and third tier leaders of the Jewish Yishuv in Land of Israel joined them.
The main target of the British in Jerusalem was the National Institutions Building, where the offices of the Jewish Agency, the Jewish National Council, KKL-JNF and Keren haYesad resided. The British also wished to discover and investigate whether various branches of the "Haganah" were also situated in the building.
A large military and police force surrounded the building, deployed barricades and barbed wire in the surrounding streets. A police guard force drove to the home of Shlomo Eisenberg, the General Secretary of the Jewish Agency, and its members ordered him to drive with them to the building and open it. Eisenberg got dressed and joined the British force, however upon arriving at the building, he refused to open the main doors. "If you want to open it, do it yourselves. I will not help you," he said. The British looked at him furiously, and one of the officers took the keys and opened the large wooden doors.
In the hour that followed, after the large building's doors were opened, hundreds of soldiers and policemen burst in and launched a thorough search. Other soldiers set up sandbag stations on the roof of the building and at commanding points in the area. A full curfew was imposed upon the nearby Rehavia Neighborhood. The entire area looked like a warzone. British armored vehicles were stationed in the second circle, a few hundred meters distance from the National Institutions Building. The residents of Rehavia had no difficulty noticing the mobile communication vehicles with their high antennas, from which the voices of the soldiers could be heard sending reports on the developments of the operation.
The initial stages of the searches within the building were reported upon several days later by "HaOlam," the weekly of the World Zionist Organization: "The searches within the offices are done without the presence of any person from the Jewish institutions, or just outside witnesses, as was the practice in the world before it became civilized and democratic."
The newspaper added that violent searches were conducted in the rooms. The searchers ripped the wooden coating from the walls and even removed padding from the chairs in their search for hidden documents and possibly weapons. The folders were scattered on the floor, pages ripped out of them, and there were piles of paper everywhere. "Hundreds of kilograms of folders and documents were placed in heavy trunks and were driven away from there – to somewhere."

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