By Uri Avnery, Christopher Costello
Read Online or Download 1948: A Soldier's Tale - The Bloody Road to Jerusalem PDF
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Additional info for 1948: A Soldier's Tale - The Bloody Road to Jerusalem
We run, in order not to miss this historic moment. The crates are opened and there they are, the rifles. Thickly coated in grease. With plenty of ammunition. Everyone gets his own personal rifle. As evening falls we sit and clean them without having the right equipment. And the whole time, until long after midnight, we try to come to terms with events: a personal rifle for each Israeli soldier. Sleep is out of the question. Janek Levkovitz, a refugee from Europe who knows rifles inside out, shows us how to use these guns that we never saw in training.
It seems the scouts in front are checking something. Occasionally whispered orders are passed back along the line. ” Somewhere a light is flashing. That’s where the camp is, someone tells us, the one we are heading for. But the light seems to get further away the more we walk toward it. 6 The water is a few inches deep. I jump, slip, and scrabble to remain upright. Joske, the squad leader, is in 26 BAPTISM OF FIRE front of me, and reaches out his hand, and I help Shlomo who is behind me. The line stops.
In a few days they will form up like this to order. They stand in ranks. Soldiers. What was being formed here was not just an army. It was also a youth movement, a revolutionary movement. Within a few days a new lifestyle developed, a new way of talking, of dressing, of behaving. This new style was not copied from somewhere or somebody. It arose within us, from the character of a generation. It is possible that this youth movement would have arisen even without the war. It was the coming-of-age of a whole generation: the first generation that grew up in this land, conscious of its freedom.