Edwina Currie discusses the life of former Israeli prime minister Golda Meir. Historian Ahron Bregman joins as expert witness. Presented by Matthew Parris. From September 2010.
Golda Meir was the Iron Lady of Israeli politics, a straight-talking, intransigent leader who once said, "There is a type of woman who does not let her husband narrow her horizons". She is the choice of former Conservative government minister Edwina Currie.
Golda Meir was born in Kiev and educated in the United States, but moved to Palestine her twenties, just after the First World War. One of the signatories on Israel's Declaration of Independence in 1948, Meir was elected to the Knesset and stayed there until she retired in her late sixties. But when prime minister Levi Eshkol died unexpectedly she was called back to take his place. She was the compromise candidate but stayed there for five years and was in power during the Yom Kippur War.
Edwina Currie admires her conviction and humanity, and that fact that she reminds her of her granny.
Ahron Bregman from the Department of War Studies at Kings College London, served in the Israeli army and was present at Golda Meir's funeral. Unlike Edwina, Ahron thinks Golda Meir made some unforgiveable mistakes.