• May Your Sons Settle the Land: David Ben-Gurion’s Attitude toward Tel Aviv as Reflected in the Press

    With the establishment of the State of Israel and the reduction of power and political status that the Tel Aviv municipality had enjoyed under the British Mandate, an open confrontation erupted between the central government, led by the Mapai Party, and Tel Aviv’s municipal government, aligned with the General Zionists. This dogged struggle was thoroughly covered in the Hebrew press, which at the time consisted partly of partisan newspapers. This article examines and analyzes the attitude of David Ben-Gurion, Israel’s first prime minister, toward Tel Aviv in particular and toward the process of urbanization in the state in general. Through the prism of Tel Aviv, the article defines and analyzes Ben-Gurion’s ambivalent attitude toward the emergent Israeli urbanization. To understand Ben-Gurion’s attitude toward both urbanization and Tel Aviv, the article also examines the underlying approach of the leadership of the Yishuv, and later of the state, toward cities as opposed to rural areas, and it considers the settlement strategy during the Mandate and the early years of the state. Did Ben-Gurion indeed seek to disperse Tel Aviv’s residents throughout the country? Did he turn his back on the city he had lived in and in which he had declared the independence of the State of Israel? The article deals with these and other questions.

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