A Personal Exodus Story
By Israel Bonan
This story was written as the positive act of a 'witness', witnessing what transpired to my family and me, during the early days of June 1967; having been deported from Egypt and having immigrated subsequently to America. The story starts on the first day of the 'six days' war and takes us step by step from jail to jail and finally onto a freighter to reach the first safe haven of many, Crete, Koln, Paris and finally America.
During these events, I report on what happened, what I saw and experienced as well as how I felt; as they say "the good, the bad and yes the ugly" is portrayed uncensored. You'll meet my companions on our trek, you'll get to know me and other fellow Jews with all our strength and weaknesses, i.e. warts and all; while trying to cope with the hardships imposed upon us for the one basic reason, we were Jews living in an Arab country.
During our exodus we met people that helped us and extended a helping hand on the spot; lifting our spirit in the process so we don't succumb to desolation and despair, especially when we most needed it. Can one imagine exiting from a train station in Paris with nowhere to go! Yet we found ourselves in the open arms of one Jewish community after another. We will re-experience together, my emotional reunion with my family living in France and with my parents after we were rejoined in Paris.
It is not simply a flat narration of events, though harrowing or even 'humorous' at times it might have been, it was important as well to record how I felt and how such events affected me in the near and long term.
Regardless of the hardships of my Exodus experience I still see myself as a peace loving Jew. I have not learned to hate, and I strongly believe that "hate only begets hate"! I cannot see myself hating, and if understandably then, then definitely not now, and that if all I have learned from my Exodus experience was to hate, I would consider my life a totally wasted one.
Copyright © 2003 Israel Bonan. All Rights Reserved.