Let Me Create a Paradise, God Said to Himself : Hirsh Goodman was born in Apartheid-era South Africa where as a child he and his friends marched off to Zionist Socialist meetings, full of rhetoric about equality, justice, and democracy - all within the context of Israel. Increasingly unwilling to tolerate the racism and anti-Semitism of his home, Goodman immigrated to Israel in his teenage years. He was full of wide-eyed hope, optimism, and pride, feelings he hadn't known in South Africa, never expecting that the promised land of his dreams could also be riven by ethnic and religious conflict. It was after marching victoriously through the Sinai as a paratrooper in the Six-Day War that Goodman heard David Ben-Gurion on the radio warning that Israel must rid itself of its Arab territories lest it "become an Apartheid state, a warning that had a very specific meaning to the young soldier." Goodman spent thirty years witnessing first-hand all of Israel's subsequent troubles, from frontlines, to occupied zones, to the summits that attempted to find some lasting, or even temporary, peace. Now, in this memoir, he shares what he has seen, what he has learned, and some tough conclusions that he has reached: that Israel is imperiled as a Jewish democratic state if it, along with the Palestinians, continues on its present course.
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