Rambling ...

I'm an Irish Girl, A Dubliner, with the 'Gift of the Gab' ... I like to talk & to tell you things. In Celtic times news, views and comment were carried from place to place by wandering Seanachaí ~ Storytellers ~ who relied on their host's hospitality and appreciation. I will need that from you too, as I venture to share Politics, Poetry, Laughter, Love, Life & everything in-between ... from Bog to Blog!!

Thursday, September 30, 2010

The Golden Girl !!

"The Egyptians could run to Egypt, the Syrians into Syria. The only place we could run was into the sea, and before we do that ... we'll fight!!

I've been reading a biography of Golda Meir, Israel's first female Prime Minister. And frankly, I'm impressed. Golden Girl extraordinaire ...... Golda,  Girl extaordinaire!!!

She was elected Prime Minister of Israel on 17 March 1969, after serving as Minister of Labour and as Foreign Minister. Israel's first and the world's third woman to hold such an office, she was described as the "Iron Lady" of Israeli politics years before the epithet became associated with British prime minister Margaret Thatcher. Former prime minister David Ben-Gurion used to call Meir "the best man in the government"; she was often portrayed as the "strong-willed, straight-talking, grey-bunned grandmother of the Jewish people".

Whilst still at school she embraced Zionism & she gradually became more involved with the Zionist movement. Born in the USA, she discovered Zionism there, spoke at public meetings, embraced and hosted visitors from Palestine. She then made Ayliah .... & I Aspire to follow in her footsteps next year!!

In July 1938, Meir was the Jewish observer from Palestine at the Évian Conference, called by US President Franklin D. Roosevelt to discuss the question of Jewish refugees fleeing Nazi persecution. Delegates from the 32 invited countries repeatedly expressed their sorrow for the plight of the European Jews but made excuses as to why their countries could not help by admitting the refugees. The only exception was the Dominican Republic, which pledged to accept 100,000 refugees on generous terms. Meir was disappointed at the outcome and remarked to the press, "There is only one thing I hope to see before I die and that is that my people should not need expressions of sympathy anymore."

At the end of World War II, she took part in the negotiations with the British that resulted in the creation of the state of Israel. In 1948, she became Israel's first ambassador to the Soviet Union. That position lasted seven months, and she returned to Israel in 1949 to become Minister of Labour. In 1956, she became Foreign Minister, and served in this capacity until her retirement in 1965. On 26 February 1969, Prime Minister Levi Eshkol died of a heart attack, at which time many members of the Knesset asked Meir to return to politics. She became prime minister of Israel with the Labour Party's support. Meir's greatest crisis came during the 1973 Yom Kippur War.

This war Israel Won ... as All of her Wars! I like Golda Meir, she was true to her word, which was born of her Zionist convictions .... & this is one of my two favourite quotes of hers "To be or not to be is not a question of compromise. Either you be or you don't be".

In the wake of the Munich massacre at the 1972 Summer Olympics, Meir appealed to the world to "save our citizens and condemn the unspeakable criminal acts committed." Outraged at the perceived lack of global action, she ordered the Mossad to hunt down and assassinate the Black September and PFLP operatives who took part in the massacre.  Both stories are told in postings preceeding this one!

On 8 December 1978, Meir died of lymphatic cancer in Jerusalem at the age of 80. She was buried on Mount Herzl in Jerusalem on 12 December 1978.

And my other 'favourite' quote of hers ... "To be successful, a woman has to be much better at her job than a man" ... I kinda think she was!!

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