Excerpts from Part 1

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On November 29, 1947, the future of 1.3 million Arabs and 700,000 Jews living in Palestine rested with the decision of fifty-six delegates of the General Assembly of the United Nations. Jewish celebration and Arab mourning commenced at the moment those delegates cast their votes in favor of partitioning the ancient land, thereby fulfilling the two-thousand-year-old Jewish dream of returning to their historic home.

From that day, Jerusalem became a war zone.

Jerusalem: Wednesday, January 7, 1948

Moving swiftly from side to side to avoid sniper fire, a tense Joseph Gale quickly approached the front door of his unpretentious block home. Once inside, he continued his fast pace, giving an alert glance at his sleeping son before rushing through the sitting room and into the cramped hallway that had been turned into a delivery room.

Ester Gale didn't notice her husband's return. She was rolling back and forth on the thin mattress, holding a damp cloth to her chest, making small, animal-like noises that broke the stillness of the room.

Joseph's sister, Rachel, and Anna Taylor, an American woman who had befriended the Gales upon their arrival in Palestine, were at Ester's side.

Joseph glanced at his sister and noticed that her eyes were fixed with a hopeful stare on the open doorway. Joseph shook his head and held out his arms in a gesture of defeat. He whispered, "I could find no one. Not even a nurse."

Rachel took a deep breath. She was relieved at Joseph's safe return, but dismayed that he had been unable to locate a physician. Rachel exchanged looks of apprehension with Anna before murmuring, "Well, we will do the best we can."

© The Sasson Corporation • Rights to publish Ester's Child owned by Windsor-Brooke Books, LLC.

Excerpts from Part 1

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