Holocaust and IsraelHolocaust and Israel

BOREHAMWOOD, England - Some observers have speculated that the quality of overall leadership in Israel would be much better today if the Holocaust hadn't happened. The reasoning goes some thing like this: a fair number of the six million Jews who perished during World War II were professional people - doctors, lawyers, university professors - and even those without formal education possessed a keen intellect. Presumably, much of Eastern European Jewry would have emigrated to Israel after World War II. Numbered among those observers was the first prime minister of Israel - David Ben-Gu-ion. According to Jerusalem Mayor Teddy Kollek, Mr. Ben-Gurion was a man of "unequaled foresight." Writing about the first prime minister in his autobiography, Mayor Kollek stated: "As for the six million killed by the Nazis, he [Ben-Gurion] regretted the loss of the particularly sharp intelligence that developed among East European Jewry, especially because he knew what it would have meant for Israel if it could draw on that intellect.

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Publication Date: July 16, 1984