The Cercle Bernard Lazare was formed in 1954 by a group of Socialist-Zionists. It is named after the well-known French intellectual, writer, journalist and anarchist Bernard Lazare (1865-1903) who was one of the first to come to the defence of Alfred Dreyfus. The CBL is linked to the Israeli party Meretz and supports Peace Now.
The CBL organises a variety of activities including a Yiddish conversation class. Since 1996 it also publishes a Yiddish monthly journal called Yidishe Heftn - Les Cahiers Yiddish.