By Shabtai Teveth (310 Pages)Publisher: Harcourt Brace & Co., 1996
Did David Ben-Gurion, founder of the modern state of Israel, and other Zionist leaders sacrifice six million European Jews to the Holocaust for the sake of a sovereign Jewish state in Palestine? If not, then why did Ben-Gurion fail to arouse the American public to demand the mass rescue of Europe's Jews by the Allies? Or, for that matter, why did not Jews in the United States or Palestine make more of an effort to save Europe's Jews from Nazi death camps? The controversy rages on to the present day. Ben-Gurion's most forceful accusers were ultraorthodox rabbis in America and Israel; their charges have been taken up by Zionists, anti-Zionists, and post-Zionists. In this provocative work, Shabtai Teveth, author of Ben-Gurion: The Burning Ground - winner of the 1988 National Jewish Book Award - offers a sober response. Bringing to bear voluminous evidence - including correspondence, declassified records, and personal interviews with the principal players - Teveth thoroughly dismantles the theory of Ben-Gurion's complicity in the Holocaust. He argues that, despite the pleas of Zionist leaders, the American and British governments refused to attempt the rescue of European Jews or the aerial bombing of Nazi death camps, mainly for fear of mass Jewish immigration to the United States, England, and Palestine.