This is the never-before-told story of the illegal immigrants’ ship Exodus 47, as told by its captain, Yitzhak “Ike” Aronowicz. Ike Aronowicz was only 23 years old when he became the captain of the Exodus in 1947. Sixty years later, he recounts the journey from Baltimore, Maryland, to Eretz Israel.
Like many Jews from Poland, Aronowicz’s family fled the Nazis by settling in Palestine. But the young Aronowicz wanted to fight against the German troops, so he eventually enrolled in the naval division of the Palmach, a branch of the Haganah, the Jewish self-defense organization.
He was sent to Baltimore in the United States to find a ship and take it on its uncertain mission to Palestine. From the south of France, 4,545 Jews, most survivors of the extermination camps, boarded the vessel and therefore became eligible for clandestine immigration to the Promised Land, then a British protectorate.
The odyssey came to an end when a fierce battle between the passengers and the British forces broke out, leaving the immigrants unable to disembark at the port of Haifa. A few months later, on November 29, 1947, the United Nations adopted Resolution 81, splitting Palestine in two states. And thus Israel was born. In haunting detail, Aronowicz tells this gripping saga that led to the creation of the state of Israel.