Born on December 19, 1910 in Vilna district in the Russian Empire. When he was three, his family immigrated to Eretz Israel and his father became a Hebrew teacher at a Tel Aviv elementary school. When the 1929 Arab riots broke out, he joined the Haganah in Jerusalem, where he was studying philosophy and mathematics at the Hebrew University. When the Irgun was established, he was one of its first members, and displayed outstanding military skills.
In 1937 he was appointed Commander of Jerusalem District and a year later Commander in Chief of the Irgun.
On May17, 1941 he was sent, with three of his comrades, to Iraq on behalf of the British army. The next day a bomb from a German aircraft killed him.