Review of ‘Einstein on Israel and Zionism’

Review of ‘Einstein on Israel and Zionism’

I blogged about attending the book party in May for the author of this curious book that denies Albert Einstein’s Zionist identification. My review of “Einstein on Israel and Zionism” by Fred Jerome (St. Martin’s Press, 2009, 334 pages, $25.95) has finally been published at the suburban New York/New Jersey weekly, the Jewish Standard. It begins as follows:

Fred Jerome, an anti-Zionist leftist who has written three books on Albert Einstein’s political activism, is trying, in his recent “Einstein on Israel and Zionism,” to reconcile his own beliefs with those of Einstein, a man he greatly admires.

Toward this end, Jerome contends that it’s a “myth” that Einstein was a Zionist or that he really supported the State of Israel. This is not a simple argument to make, since Einstein — even in writings extensively quoted in this book — calls himself a Zionist and was in fact offered the presidency of Israel in 1952, following the death of Chaim Weizmann.

Jerome … deftly identifies his hero as a “cultural Zionist” rather than a “political Zionist.” He places Einstein (correctly) in the pantheon of other left and liberal Zionists who advocated a bi-national state in then Palestine before the violent Arab onslaughts in late 1947 and the first half of ‘48. These people famously included Hannah Arendt, Martin Buber, and Judah Magnes. They also included the Hashomer Hatzair socialist-Zionist movement. But this does not mean that they were not political Zionists who believed in the building of Palestine as the reborn Jewish homeland. …

… Far from proving that Einstein was not a Zionist, Jerome reveals the depth of the scientist’s approximately 35-year commitment to Zionism, beginning in 1919. … Click here to read the entire article.

By | 2009-08-09T18:30:00-04:00 August 9th, 2009|Blog|0 Comments

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