Latest update: March 14th, 2013
Trumpeldor’s final words have special meaning for Moshe Brodetzky, an American volunteer in Palestine who in 1947 was hospitalized with malaria. “One afternoon, I noticed that one of the nurses who was treating me had been crying,” he recalled. “She said she had been at the bedside of a man who was on one of the illegal immigrant boats. He had been doused with burning oil by the British soldiers when he resisted arrest. As he lay dying from his wounds, he had repeated Trumpeldor’s words, ‘No matter, it is good to die for our country.’ ”
That man, Brodetzky added, “wasn’t comparable to a suicide bomber. He didn’t want to die and he wasn’t trying to hurt anyone else. Like Trumpeldor, he just wanted to live his life in peace in the Jewish homeland…. His idea of ‘sacrifice’ was to plow and revive the land that had been neglected by the Arabs, while their idea of ‘sacrifice’ has been to teach their children to hate and kill and be killed, instead of trying to lead productive lives.”
About the Author: Dr. Rafael Medoff is the founding director of The David S. Wyman Institute for Holocaust Studies and coeditor of the Online Encyclopedia of America's Response to the Holocaust.
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