688 pages, 8.99 × 5.92 × 1.44 in
November 11, 2014
Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group
The following ISBNs are associated with this title:
ISBN - 10: 1400076986
ISBN - 13: 9781400076987
Read from the Book
Preface · Land of Hope My grandfather was a Hebrew teacher in Rehovot at the beginning of the last century.” Ariel Sharon, corpulent, white-haired, looked up over his reading glasses at the half-full Knesset, the Israeli parliament. Members were listening politely or quietly reading. “I have a deep love for the Hebrew language,” he read on in his incongruously high-pitched voice. “For the miracle of its revival, for the historical wellsprings from which it draws its words and phrases.” There was no tension in the chamber that afternoon in January 2005. No catcalls, no heckling. A parliamentary moment without politics. Sharon could have asked one of his two deputy prime ministers to represent the government at the largely ceremonial debate marking Hebrew Language Day. But he wanted to speak himself. He had a point to make. Mordechai Scheinerman, Sharon’s grandfather, came to Palestine in 1910 and settled with his wife and children in the still-tiny Jewish village of Rehovot, southeast of the barely existent Jewish town of Tel Aviv. That made him sort of aristocracy. Not quite a Mayflower man of the First Aliya (1882–1902), but still an early Zionist pioneer of pre–World War I days. Palestine was a derelict corner of the crumbling Ottoman Empire then. The dream of the Zionist visionary Theodor Herzl (d. 1904), that it would one day become a Jewish state, seemed just that: a dream. In his native town, Brest Litovsk in White Russia, Mordechai was an early convert to Zioni
From the Publisher
A commander in the Israeli Army from its inception in 1948, and a politician whose tenure bridged numerous governments, as both a general and a politician Ariel Sharon championed the construction of Israeli settlements in the West Bank and Gaza. But in his later years, as prime minister, he took a dramatic turn, and became the driving force behind Israel’s unilateral disengagement. In this first truly comprehensive biography, David Landau, the former editor-in-chief of Haaretz, paints a vivid picture of the most dramatic and imposing Israeli political and military leader of the last forty years—and takes a penetrating look at how Sharon transformed his country like no one else.
About the Author
David Landau, OBE, immigrated to Israel from the United Kingdom as a young man. His career in journalism began in 1970 at The Jerusalem Post, and he joined Haaretz in 1993 as news editor. He founded Haaretz’s English edition and was its editor from 1997 to 2004, and was editor in chief of Haaretz’s Hebrew edition until 2008. He is the longtime Israel correspondent for The Economist. Landau collaborated with Israel’s president Shimon Peres on Peres’s memoir, Battling for Peace, and he published, with President Peres, Ben-Gurion: A Political Life. He is also the author of Piety and Power, an account of the increasingly significant role the ultra-orthodox (haredi) play in Israel, the United States, and Europe. Landau graduated with a degree in law from University College London and studied in leading yeshivas in Israel. He is married with children and grandchildren and lives in Jerusalem.
“Comprehensive and readable. . . . [Arik] chronicles Sharon’s epic military and political battles, serving as a kind of national history.” —The New York Times Book Review “[An] expertly written biography . . . that unpicks many of the controversies around Sharon’s record, and promises to become the definitive account of his career. . . . This is no panegyric. . . . [Landau] is an elegant writer and a superb journalist, making this book an engrossing read.” —Financial Times “Landau captures the combativeness and contradictions of one of the major figures in Israel’s history. Sharon played a role in nearly every stage of the nation’s development since its independence.” —The Washington Post “Landau does an excellent job in presenting a fair portrait of a man who strove to do what he thought was best for his people, to the alternating consternation of both the Left and the Right.” —The Daily Beast“A big biography worthy of its subject, an outsized figure in the history of Israel. Sharon led a long, controversial public life. . . . Landau’s book covers all of it and then some.” —The Oregonian “Landau is an elegant writer. . . . The heart of this exceptional biography is the transformation of Sharon from a loose cannon—as menacing to his allies as to his enemies—into a respected statesman, the hope of a nation.” —Haaretz “Nuanced, insightful. . . . It will be regarded, in the years to come, as the definitive work on the eleventh prime minister’s life.” —The Times of Israel “Import