The family lived in the city's Mellah, or Jewish quarter.His father, Shlomo, ran a grocery store, and his mother, Mazal, was a housewife.Since then he has been arrested several times for violations of those restrictions, including giving various interviews to foreign journalists and attempting to leave Israel.He says he suffered "cruel and barbaric treatment" at the hands of Israeli authorities while imprisoned, and suggests that his treatment would have been different if he had not converted to Christianity from Judaism.Today, fewer than 150,000 people live in 274 kibbutzim, only 74 of which are still communal.Kibbutzim produce 40 percent of Israel's agricultural output, but their residents constitute less than 2 percent of the population.
Kibbutzniks, as residents are called, work on dairy farms, in orchard and even outside their compounds, putting their full paychecks into the communal pot.
Everyone receives an equal monthly draw from the kibbutz's administration regardless of what they do or how much money they put into the fund.
But sticking to the in-theory definition of the kibbutz will not help in understanding the fragile - almost explosive - coexistence between kibbutzim (the Hebrew plural form of kibbutz) and other types of communities in Israel: cities, towns, settlements or villages in their more internationally familiar forms.
Almost all share an interest in nature and enjoy dwelling in the beauty of their desert home.
The vision of the Kibbutz is to create a community based on Reform Zionist values and environmental consciousness.