Literally cried tears of joy as I read the first 100 pages of the titillating book, “Like Dreamers: The Story of the Israeli Paratroopers Who Reunited Jerusalem and Divided a Nation” by Yossi Klein Halevi. The start of the book details the emotions of the paratroopers who liberated the old city of Jerusalem. And with such vivid descriptions of our people – of Israelis – of how “pig eating kibbutzniks stood with Merkaz Harav mystics.” Such vivid descriptions of the streets being liberated.
Cried as a Jew reading the stories of our people liberating Jerusalem. Cried as the grandson of Holocaust survivors at reading these stories of seven heroic paratroopers who played (and play) such key roles in shaping the modern-day State of Israel. Reading it made me think of my mother often who studied in Jerusalem at Hebrew University during this period.
This book was really a great book about the modern day state of Israel. Indeed, as Samuel Freedman said, Yossi Klein Halevi is “the most incisive and eloquent journalist writing from Israel for an American audience.” “Like Dreamers” is Psalm 126, Shir Hamaalot, hayinu k’cholmim, “When the Lord returned the exiles to Zion, we were like dreamers.”
Hanging in my living room is modern Jerusalem art work with the words from Naomi Shemer’s epic song, “Jerusalem of Gold”, and indeed this book is one which belongs in every Jewish home. It’s a great tale about the Jewish people.