This Week’s Guest: Francine Klagsbrun
She was one of only two women to sign Israel’s Declaration of Independence. She served as Israel’s first ambassador to the Soviet Union, as labor minister, foreign minister, head of the Israeli Labor party—and as the Jewish state’s only female prime minister. After Israel was hit with a surprise attack on Yom Kippur 1973, she was a pillar of strength for the nation. Golda Meir was Israel’s lioness, the mother of her country.
In Lioness: Golda Meir and the Nation of Israel, the noted author Francine Klagsbrun tells the story of Golda Meir’s remarkable life—from her childhood in Milwaukee to her time on a kibbutz to her ascent to Israel’s highest office. Klagsbrun shows how Meir’s plainspoken appeals and shrewd political instincts allowed her to build relationships throughout the world, Unflinchingly, she also takes a close look at the darkest moment in Meir’s premiership—the Yom Kippur War—and at what, if anything, the prime minister could have done to anticipate or prevent it.
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In this podcast, Francine Klagsbrun sits down with Jonathan Silver to discuss her book and the life and times of Golda Meir. They explore the impact Meir’s American childhood and youth had on her worldview, what she thought of American Jews, how she rose through the ranks of her party, the controversy over the Yom Kippur War, and the lasting meaning of her many decades of service to the Jewish people.
Musical selections in this podcast are drawn from the Quintet for Clarinet and Strings, op. 31a, composed by Paul Ben-Haim and performed by the ARC Ensemble.
Every Thursday, the Tikvah Podcast at Mosaic will bring to to your car/earbuds/home stereo/Alexa the latest in our efforts to advance Jewish thought. For more on the new podcast, check out our inaugural post here.
A final note: If you would like to share your thoughts on the podcast, ideas for future guests and topics, or any other form of feedback, just send us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org. We’re grateful for your support, and we look forward to a new year of great conversations on Jewish essays and ideas.