Will the real David Ben Gurion please stand up???
Today, the State of Israel commemorated the Memorial Day for Israel's 1st Prime Minister, David Ben Gurion.
Current Prime Minister, Ariel Sharon, who spoke at the ceremony, used the occasion to try and show that Ben Gurion was in favor of ceding (retreating?) parts of the Land of Israel to the enemies of the Jewish People. He quoted Ben Gurion as saying the following words (courtesy of Ha'aretz):
"We never forgot that this is our country and we will never relinquish it. Nevertheless, for peace we are willing to give up some of what we are entitled to. In choosing between having all of the land without a Jewish state or a Jewish state without all of the land, we chose the latter."
Yet, the very same David Ben Gurion also said the following words (which Prime Minister Sharon neglected to mention):
"No Jew is at liberty to surrender the right of the Jewish Nation and the Land of Israel to exist. No Jewish body is sanctioned to do so. No Jew alive today has the authority to yield any piece of land whatsoever. This right is preserved by the Jewish People throughout the generations and cannot be forfeited under any circumstance. Even if at some given time there will be those who declare that they are relinquishing this right, they have neither the power nor the jurisdiction to negate it for future generations to come. The Jewish Nation is neither obligated by nor responsible for any waiver such as this. Our right to this land, in its entirety, is steadfast, inalienable and eternal. And until the coming of the Great Redemption, we shall never yield this historic right.”
What is clear to me, aside from Ben Gurion's ability to speak from both sides of his mouth (perhaps this is who Ariel Sharon learned it from?), is that I do not believe that anyone can unequivocally say what David Ben Gurion might have done were he alive today, regardless of the efforts of Ariel Sharon and the Israeli media to prove otherwise.