80 Quotes by Golda Meir

Golda Meir, an Israeli stateswoman and politician, made history as the fourth Prime Minister of Israel and the world's third woman to hold such a position. Her leadership during a critical period in Israel's history, including the Yom Kippur War, demonstrated her resilience and commitment to the security and growth of the nation. Meir's dedication to the founding principles of Israel, her diplomacy, and her unwavering leadership in the face of challenges earned her respect both domestically and internationally. Known for her straightforward approach and strong-willed demeanor, Meir played a crucial role in shaping Israel's policies and fostering its relationships with other nations. Her life and legacy reflect the ability of a determined individual to rise to leadership during times of adversity and make a lasting impact on the global stage.

Golda Meir Quotes

One cannot and must not try to erase the past merely because it does not fit the present.

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We do not rejoice in victories. We rejoice when a new kind of cotton is grown and when strawberries bloom in Israel.

Trust yourself. Create the kind of self that you will be happy to live with all your life. Make the most of yourself by fanning the tiny, inner sparks of possibility into flames of achievement.

Trust yourself. Create the kind of self that you will be happy to live with all your life.

Don't be humble, you're not that great.

You'll never find a better sparring partner than adversity.

The Egyptians could run to Egypt, the Syrians into Syria. The only place we could run was into the sea, and before we did that we might as well fight.

There is no such thing as a Palestinian people... It is not as if we came and threw them out and took their country. They didn't exist.

Let me tell you something that we Israelis have against Moses. He took us 40 years through the desert in order to bring us to the one spot in the Middle East that has no oil!

I must govern the clock, not be governed by it.

It isn't really important to decide when you are very young just exactly what you want to become when you grow up. It is much more important to decide on the way you want to live. If you are going to be honest with yourself and honest with your friends, if you are going to get involved in causes which are good for others, not only for yourselves, then it seems to me that that is sufficient, and maybe what you will be is only a matter of chance.

By the way, did you ever realize that if Moses would have turned right instead of left, we'd have had the oil, the Arabs would have had the sand?

Ability hits the mark where presumption overshoots and diffidence falls short.

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If we have to have a choice between being dead and pitied, and being alive with a bad image, we'd rather be alive and have the bad image.

Pessimism is a luxury that a Jew can never allow himself.

The world hates a Jew who hits back. The world loves us only when we are to be pitied.

Once in a Cabinet we had to deal with the fact that there had been an outbreak of assaults on women at night. One minister suggested a curfew; women should stay home after dark. I said, 'But it's the men who are attacking the women. If there's to be a curfew, let the men stay home, not the women.

The only way to eliminate war is to love our children more than we hate our enemies.

We Jews have a secret weapon in our struggle with the Arabs; we have no place to go.

This country exists as the fulfillment of a promise made by God Himself. It would be ridiculous to ask it to account for its legitimacy.

Don't become cynical. Don't give up hope. Don't believe that everything is judged only by expediency. There is idealism in this world. There is human brotherhood.

It isn't enough to believe in something; you have to have the stamina to meet obstacles and overcome them, to struggle.

A leader who doesn't hesitate before he sends his nation into battle is not fit to be a leader.

It is not only a matter, I believe, of religious observance and practice. To me, being Jewish means and has always meant being proud to be part of a people that has maintained its distinct identity for more than 2,000 years, with all the pain and torment that has been inflicted upon it.

Those that perished in Hitler's gas chambers were the last Jews to die without standing up to defend themselves.

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Above all, this country is our own. Nobody has to get up in the morning and worry what his neighbors think of him. Being a Jew is no problem here.

Every civilization finds it necessary to negotiate compromises with its own values.

There will be peace in the Middle East only when the Arabs love their children more than they hate Israel.

Those who don't know how to weep with their whole heart, don't know how to laugh either.

Arab sovereignty in Jerusalem just cannot be. This city will not be divided - not half and half, not 60-40, not 75-25, nothing.

There can be no doubt that the average man blames much more than he praises. His instinct is to blame. If he is satisfied he says nothing; if he is not, he most illogically kicks up a row.

To be or not to be is not a question of compromise. Either you be or you don't be.

Israel itself is the strongest guarantee against another Holocaust.

My dear, old age is like an airplane flying in a storm. Once you're in it there's nothing you can do. You can't stop a plane, you can't stop a storm, you can't stop time. So you might as well take it easy, with wisdom.

You can't improve on saying nothing.

America is a great country. It has many shortcomings, many social inequalities, and it's tragic that the problem of the blacks wasn't solved fifty or even a hundred years ago, but it's still a great country, a country full of opportunities, of freedom! Does it seem nothing to you to be able to say what you like, even against the government, the Establishment?

Men are committing the rapes. Let them be put under curfew.

I don't know why you use a fancy French word like detente when there's a good English phrase for it - cold war.

Glorious bouquets and storms of applause are the trimmings which every artist naturally enjoys.

Any one who speaks in favor of bringing the Arab refugees back must also say how he expects to take the responsibility for it, if he is interested in the state of Israel. It is better that things are stated clearly and plainly: We shall not let this happen.

How can we return the occupied territories? There is nobody to return them to.

We don't thrive on military acts. We do them because we have to, and thank God we are efficient.

At work, you think of the children you have left at home. At home, you think of the work you've left unfinished. Such a struggle is unleashed within yourself. Your heart is rent.

Not being beautiful was the true blessing. Not being beautiful forced me to develop my inner resources. The pretty girl has a handicap to overcome.

I want to say to you, friends, that the Jewish community in Palestine is going to fight to the very end. If we have arms to fight with, we will fight with those, and if not, we will fight with stones in our hands.

Old age is like a plane flying through a storm. Once you're aboard, there's nothing you can do.

Anybody who believes in something without reservation believes that this thing is right and should be, has the stamina to meet obstacles and overcome them.

The only alternative to war is peace and the only road to peace is negotiations.

It is always much easier, I have discovered, to make people cry or gasp than to make them think.

To be successful, a woman has to be much better at her job than a man.

Whether women are better than men I cannot say - but I can say they are certainly no worse.

We only want that which is given naturally to all peoples of the world, to be masters of our own fate, not of others, and in cooperation and friendship with others.

I'm sure that someday children in schools will study the history of the men who made war as you study an absurdity. They'll be shocked, just as today we're shocked with cannibalism.

But the individual was not a tool for something. He was the maker of tools. He was the one who must build. Even for the best purpose it is criminal to turn an individual into simply a means for some ultimate end. A society in which the dignity of the individual is destroyed cannot hope to be a decent society.

We can forgive you for killing our children, but we can never forgive you for making us kill your children.

Zionism and pessimism are not compatible.

There's no difference between one's killing and making decisions that will send others to kill. It's exactly the same thing, or even worse.

There was no such thing as Palestinians, they never existed.

You can get used to anything if you have to, even feeling perpetually guilty.

There is only one thing I hope to see before I die, and that is that my people should not need expressions of sympathy anymore.

If only political leaders would allow themselves to feel, as well as to think, the world might be a happier place.

Women's liberation is just a lot of foolishness. It's men who are discriminated against. They can't bear children. And no one is likely to do anything about that.

The Soviet government is the most realistic regime in the world - no ideals.

I never did anything alone. Whatever was accomplished in this country was accomplished collectively.

I don't want to have a bad influence on anybody, but there's no point in my giving up cigarettes now. I won't die young.

The dog that trots about finds a bone.

Fashion is an imposition, a reign on freedom.

It is not a sin to be seventy but it is also no joke.

We say peace and the echo comes back from the other side, war. We dont want wars even when we win.

From Russia I didn't bring out a single happy memory, only sad, tragic ones. The nightmare of pogroms, the brutality of Cossacks charging young Socialists, fear, shrieks of terror.

Show me a sensible person who likes himself or herself! I know myself too well to like what I see. I know but too well that I'm not what I'd like to be.

There is no such thing as a Palestinian.

Men who have reached and passed forty-five, have a look as if waiting for the secret of the other world, and as if they were perfectly sure of having found out the secret of this.

the modern woman asks herself: Is there something wrong with me if my children don't fill up my life?

It's no accident many accuse me of conducting public affairs with my heart instead of my head. Well, what if I do?.. Those who don't know how to weep with their whole heart don't know how to laugh either.

The public history of modern art is the story of conventional people not knowing what they are dealing with.

Being seventy is not a sin. It's not a joy, either.

Can we today measure devotion to husband and children by our indifference to everything else?

How does it feel to be a woman minister? I don't know; I've never been a man minister.

We don't want wars even when we win.

The deserts of the Middle East are in need of water, not bombers.

I'm a slave to this leaf in a diary that lists what I must do, what I must say, every half hour.

I have always felt sorry for people afraid of feeling, of sentimentality, who are unable to weep with their whole heart. Because those who do not know how to weep do not know how to laugh either.

It is true we have won all our wars, but we have paid for them. We don't want victories anymore.

We will not forgive you for making us kill your sons.

How can I explain the difference to me between America and Russia?.. the America I've known is a place where men on horseback escort union marchers, the Russia I've known is a place where men on horseback slaughter young Socialists and Jews.

As President Nixon says, presidents can do almost anything, and President Nixon has done many things that nobody would have thought of doing.

― Golda Meir Quotes

Chief Editor

Tal Gur is an author, founder, and impact-driven entrepreneur at heart. After trading his daily grind for a life of his own daring design, he spent a decade pursuing 100 major life goals around the globe. His journey and most recent book, The Art of Fully Living, has led him to found Elevate Society.

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