Ben-Gurion: The Biography of an Extraordinary Man Critical Essays

Robert St. John


(Critical Edition of Young Adult Fiction)

Before beginning Ben-Gurion: The Biography of an Extraordinary Man, St. John lists many famous men and women who “supplied stories, checked facts, and gave of their time” to help in writing the book. Included are many supporters and founders of Israel, famous Americans such as Eleanor Roosevelt, and many news media representatives who chronicled Israel’s conception, birth, and growth. While there is no foreword to describe the book’s goals, its title tells St. John’s purpose: proof of the extraordinary nature of Ben-Gurion. This task is done quickly, as the story of the great man—born David Green in Plonsk, Poland—unfolds. It is made clear that Ben-Gurion’s commitment to the realization of a national state for Jews began when he cofounded a Polish Zionist youth group at the age of fourteen.

Furthermore, Ben-Gurion’s strong involvement in every stage of development of the Jewish state is described in detail, beginning with the actualization of Hashomer (the Watchmen), a secret corps of Jewish guards for Palestinian Jewry, and Haganah, the nexus of the future Israeli armed forces. His work included worldwide travel, including trips to the United States, to raise money and to garner support for the concept of a Jewish state. He delivered articulate speeches and reminded the world of the yearly Jewish Passover hope, reiterated worldwide for thousands of years: “This year we are here, next year we will be in the Land of Israel.”...

(The entire section is 506 words.)