Milestones in the Postal History of the Holy Land
Zionism and Congresses
As early as 1882, in response to the pogroms in Russia,
and as part of the national revival in Europe, Jewish
immigration to Palestine began with what came to be known
as the First Aliyah; thirty thousand Jews, the majority
of them Russians, arrived in Eretz Israel over a period
of twenty years. They settled in a number of agricultural
settlements founded with the financial support of Jewish
philanthropists from Western Europe.
The Dreyfus Affair (1895), which was accompanied by a
rise in anti-Semitism in France, aroused Theodor Herzl’s
awareness that a solution had to be found for the problem
of the Jewish people; he formulated a new and practical
approach for political Zionism in order to ensure Jewish
rights in Eretz Israel, the nation’s historic homeland.
For this purpose, he established the World Zionist
Organization and, together with others, planned to make
Zionism a political movement at its First Congress in
Basel (August 1897).
At the conclusion of the First Congress, Herzl wrote in
his diary:
Were I to sum up the Basel Congress in a word,
it would be this: At Basel I founded the Jewish State. If I
said this out loud today, I would be answered by universal
laughter. Perhaps in five years and certainly in 50,
everyone will know it.”
Exactly fifty years later, on 29.11.1947, the United Nation
resolution for the partition of Palestine was approved.
תאודור הרצל ודוד וולפסון על סיפון האנייה במסעם
1898 ,
Theodor Herzl and David Wolffsohn on board
ship, on the way to Eretz Israel, 1898
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