Birth of Israel

ZF parties for Israel 63

April 21, 2011

Europe's biggest Israel Independence Day event is due to take place in London next month.

The Zionist Federation's Israel 63 Yom Ha'atzmaut party will feature singer Einat Sarouf.

Young Israeli performers Adi Bouskila, Gilan Shahof, Yael Erez and Ido Shavit, who were due to perform at Yom Ha'atzmaut last year, but were grounded due to the volcanic ash incident, will also be there.

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On this day: The Hadassah medical convoy massacre

By Libby Galvin, April 13, 2011

Almost exactly a month before the establishment of the state of Israel, 80 people – 79 Jewish doctors and nurses and one British soldier – were killed when a medical convoy taking aid to Hadassah Hospital was attacked by Arab forces.

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On this day: the Kishinev pogrom

By Jennifer Lipman, April 6, 2011

In the aftermath of the terrible events on Easter Sunday in Kishinev, in modern-day Moldova – then the capital of Bessarabia - poet Chaim Bialik wrote his notorious verse "In the City of Slaughter".

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On this day: Golda Meir voted in

By Jennifer Lipman, March 7, 2011

After Levi Eshkol’s sudden death from a heart attack, the party chose the then 70-yearold to replace him. In doing so, the woman born Golda Mabovitch in Kiev became the first female leader in Israel and a pioneering figure for the world.

She said on being chosen: "I have faced difficult problems in the past but nothing like the one I'm faced with now in leading the country."

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On this day: Morocco declares independence

By Jennifer Lipman, March 2, 2011

The first of France’s Maghrebi protectorates to throw of its colonial master, Morocco did not share the radical upheaval or violence of neighbouring Algeria in its struggle for independence.

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Rahm Emanuel wins Chicago mayor vote

By Jennifer Lipman, February 23, 2011

The son of an Irgun member who fought during Israel’s war of independence has been elected the first Jewish mayor of Chicago.

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On this day: The Soviet Union cuts ties with Israel

By Jennifer Lipman, February 11, 2011

In 1947, The Soviet Union was one of 33 countries to vote in favour of the United Nation’s partition plan for Palestine. Almost immediately after Israel declared its independence on May 14 1948, the Soviet Union offered recognition, along with the United States and other Western powers.

It was not to last. The Soviet Union, as would almost all of its satellites, cut ties with Israel less than five years later.

For the next 35 years, the Soviets pursued largely pro-Arab policies and Israel was a pawn in a much wider game between the US and USSR.

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Palestinian Arab leader struck wartime deal with Nazis

By Jennifer Lipman, December 15, 2010

The Nazis told the leader of the Palestinian Arabs that in return for his help during the Second World War he would have control of Palestine.

According to a report released this week by the US National Archives, based on thousands of declassified documents, the Nazis planned to make the Grand Mufti of Jerusalem, Haj Amin al-Husseini, overall leader after the British were ousted and the 350,000-strong Jewish population was murdered.

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On this day: Allenby captures Jerusalem

By Jennifer Lipman, December 9, 2010

Before the First World War, Jerusalem, as indeed the region, had been under the control of the Ottoman Empire for some four centuries. 1917 saw the fall of the Ottoman regime and, just weeks after the Balfour Declaration in Britain, saw Jerusalem be captured by the British army’s Commander-in-Chief, Field Marshall Sir Edmund Allenby.

British Prime Minister David Lloyd-George had already called on his army to secure Jerusalem by Christmas. Allenby improved on that wish.

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On this day: David Ben-Gurion dies

By Jennifer Lipman, December 1, 2010

Israel’s first prime minister was born in Russian Poland in 1886, and given the name David Green by his father Avigdor. A leader of the Hibbath Zion movement, Avigdor instilled in his son a love of Zion from an early age and the house was always buzzing with talk of Zionism and Hebrew ideas.

By his late teens he had joined the Socialist-Zionist Poale Zion and become a dedicated opponent to both Tsarist antisemitism and the exploitation of workers. His activism got him into trouble, and he was arrested and jailed for agitating.

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