Israel at Sixty

The Unforgiven by Jeffrey Goldberg
The Atlantic, May 2008

“As a young Zionist in the late 1980s, I was drawn to the idea that Israel represented the most sublime and encompassing expression of Jewishness, so I moved there and joined its army. This decision was unfathomable to many of my new Israeli comrades. One of my commanders asked me, ‘Why would a person leave America to die in Israel?’ Then he asked if we could switch places—he would move to New York and marry a doctor’s daughter, and I would die chasing Palestinians through the casbah of Nablus. I was dreaming Leon Uri’s dreams, but he was having visions out of Goodbye, Columbus.

“I didn’t die, obviously, but his argument bothered me, and still does.”

Also see:    &nbspProphesying Palestine: Jeffrey Goldberg looks back at Atlantic predictions from the 1920s and '30s about prospects for a Jewish homeland.
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Jennie Rothenberg Gritz is a senior editor at The Atlantic, where she edits digital features.

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