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David Ben Gurion - Founder of the State of Israel
Born on October 16, 1886 in Plonsk in the Russian occupation of Poland, he left for Palestine in 1906 after the wave of pogroms during the first Russian Revolution. At that time he was already a member of the Zionist movement and founded the "Workers of Zion" association in Palestine, whose ideological basis was the establishment of a Jewish "home" in Palestine on the principles of Jewish nationalism and world socialism. Unlike the Old Believers, the Jews organized in Ben Gurion's movement were exclusively engaged in agriculture and established Jewish settlements.
When World War I began, Ben Gurion was expelled from Palestine by the Ottoman authorities for his political activities and went to Great Britain. There, in 1917, he joined the newly formed Jewish Legion of the British Army. After the war, he campaigned for the immigration of Jews to Palestine and became secretary of the General Federation of Jewish Workers in 1921. He founded and led the Labour Party - Mapai - from 1930. In 1939, his party opposed the policies of the British government, which sought to limit the influx of Jewish immigrants to Palestine.
After the outbreak of World War II, he traveled to the United States, where he first realized the strength of the five-million-strong Jewish community there. There he also embraced and eventually promoted the idea of establishing the Jewish state of Israel on the territory of Palestine at the 1942 Zionist conference in New York. Ben Gurion told the delegates: "History has decided that we should return to our homeland and re-establish the State of Israel there." On this basis, his Mapai party became the leading force in the World Zionist Organization, and he himself became chairman of its executive committee at the 22nd Zionist Congress in Basel on 21 November 1946.
After the establishment of the State of Israel[/b:aaaaa] in 1948, Ben Gurion became its first Prime Minister and also Minister of Defense. With abundant Soviet assistance, he was victorious in the First Israeli-Arab War, which broke out immediately after the declaration of independence. Then in January 1949, the Mapai party won the elections and Ben Gurion formed the first elected government. Under his leadership, Israel ended its cooperation with the USSR and began to orient itself towards the United States, moving more to the right in domestic politics. After the bomb explosion at the Soviet embassy on February 9, 1953, there was even a break in mutual diplomatic relations with the USSR.
In October 1953, there was a conflict on the Israeli-Jordanian border and a subsequent invasion of Jordan by the Israeli army. This provoked international condemnation and a governmental crisis in the country, after which Ben Gurion resigned as Prime Minister. After another governmental crisis, triggered by clashes on the Israeli-Egyptian border in early November 1955, Ben Gurion again took the helm of the government. As prime minister, he then led the Second Israeli-Arab War in 1956. In the late 1950s and early 1960s, he then further strengthened Israel's political and economic ties to the United States and NATO, leading to increased opposition to his government and within the Mapai party itself. The political crisis culminated in a visit to Israel by a West German politician in June 1963, when Ben Gurion was forced to resign. Two years later, from his wing in Mapai, he founded his own party, Rafi, which he then led until 1970, when he retired for health reasons.
Ben Gurion died on 1 December 1973 and is known in Israel as the "father of the nation".
David Ben Gurion přečetl v Tel Avivu izraelskou deklaraci nezávislosti, čímž vyhlásil vznik Státu Izrael, 14. května 1948
Návrh Peelovy komise na rozdělení mandátu Ben Gurion přijal, přestože nabízel pro židovský stát mnohem méně území
Ben Gurionova rodina: David (vlevo) s manželkou Paulou, dětmi a otcem Avigdorem v roce 1929
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