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David Ben-Gurion Highly Important TLS to Moshe Sharett

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David Ben-Gurion Highly Important TLS to Moshe Sharett
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David Ben-Gurion Highly Important TLS to Moshe Sharett Regarding Palestinian Refugees and Peace with Jordan and Egypt

A 1p autograph letter in Hebrew signed by David Ben-Gurion (1886-1973), then Israeli Prime Minister and Minister of Defense, as "David Ben-Gurion" at center left. Written in Jerusalem, Israel on June 8, 1956, on a single leaf of yellow stationery pre-printed with the Emblem of Israel at top. Docketed in blue colored pencil at lower right. Double hole-punched along the right edge, expected paper folds, and two tiny chips along the central vertical fold, else near fine.6.125" x 8." Accompanied by a full English translation.

In the spring of 1956, David Ben-Gurion, who had formerly served as 1st Chairman of the Provisional State Council of Israel as well as the 1st Prime Minister of Israel, jointly served as Israeli Defense Minister and Prime Minister of Israel. It was Ben-Gurion's second term in both positions.

Ben-Gurion wrote Moshe Sharett (1894-1965), then Israeli Minister of Foreign Affairs, in part: "I do not share your opinion that if the State of Israel were to declare before the world that we are willing to accept a hundred thousand Palestinian refugees and agree to grant free passage between Jordan and the Gaza Strip, this would result in a peace agreement between ourselves, Jordan, and Egypt. By all signs, we can see that their aim is to try to destroy us in the second round. We are not able to bring the dispute to an end, but they can, and then - the dispute will be over, on the condition that we win the next round…"

Ben-Gurion and Sharett disagreed on many things in addition to the question of allowing Palestinian refugees to cross Israeli territory. The two had totally different approaches to foreign policy. Whereas the dove-like Sharett favored diplomacy, compromise, and fostering a positive international image, the hawk-like Ben-Gurion prioritized national security above all. The differences of opinion between two of Israel's most important leaders became so great that the cabinet voted to replace Sharett with Golda Meir ten days after this letter was written, on June 18, 1956.

The refugee problem which Ben-Gurion and Sharett were discussing had become a perennial concern. After the independent state of Israel was proclaimed in May 1948, Israel attempted to consolidate its territory and protect itself against infiltration by hostile elements. To do so, Israel forced Palestinians in certain areas to leave. The consequent movement of thousands of people was known as the Palestinian Exodus of 1949-1956. Competition over this same territory, notably the Gaza Strip, exists to this day; consider, at the time of this writing (May 2021), the recent uptick in rocket attacks exchanged by Israel and Hamas, the Palestinian militant group.

Relations between Israel and its predominantly Arab neighbors, like Jordan and Egypt, had always been strained, but they further deteriorated over 1955 and 1956. Small-scale Israeli military objectives like Operation Black Arrow in February 1955, Operation Elkayam in late August 1955, and Operation Volcano in early November 1955 signaled an escalation in tension between Egypt and Israel; this would only further deteriorate until Suez the Crisis of Autumn 1956. That conflict was precipitated when Egyptian President Gamal Abdel Nasser nationalized the Suez Canal and banned Israeli shipping from the 90-year-old waterway connecting the Mediterranean with the Red Sea. Israel responded by invading Egypt; they were supported by British and French forces safeguarding their access to foreign oil.

Ben-Gurion's correspondent Moshe Sharett had served as the 2nd Prime Minister of Israel for nearly two years in 1954-1955. He served as Minister of Foreign Affairs between May 1948 and June 1956.

This item comes with a Certificate from John Reznikoff, a premier authenticator for both major 3rd party authentication services, PSA and JSA (James Spence Authentications), as well as numerous auction houses.

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David Ben-Gurion Highly Important TLS to Moshe Sharett

Estimate $800 - $900
Aug 26, 2021
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Starting Price $280
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0019: David Ben-Gurion Highly Important TLS to Moshe Sharett

Sold for $2,600
33 Bids
Est. $800 - $900Starting Price $280
100 Items of Judaica, Rare Autographs
Aug 26, 2021 10:30 AM EDT
Buyer's Premium 25%

Lot 0019 Details

Description
...

David Ben-Gurion Highly Important TLS to Moshe Sharett Regarding Palestinian Refugees and Peace with Jordan and Egypt

A 1p autograph letter in Hebrew signed by David Ben-Gurion (1886-1973), then Israeli Prime Minister and Minister of Defense, as "David Ben-Gurion" at center left. Written in Jerusalem, Israel on June 8, 1956, on a single leaf of yellow stationery pre-printed with the Emblem of Israel at top. Docketed in blue colored pencil at lower right. Double hole-punched along the right edge, expected paper folds, and two tiny chips along the central vertical fold, else near fine.6.125" x 8." Accompanied by a full English translation.

In the spring of 1956, David Ben-Gurion, who had formerly served as 1st Chairman of the Provisional State Council of Israel as well as the 1st Prime Minister of Israel, jointly served as Israeli Defense Minister and Prime Minister of Israel. It was Ben-Gurion's second term in both positions.

Ben-Gurion wrote Moshe Sharett (1894-1965), then Israeli Minister of Foreign Affairs, in part: "I do not share your opinion that if the State of Israel were to declare before the world that we are willing to accept a hundred thousand Palestinian refugees and agree to grant free passage between Jordan and the Gaza Strip, this would result in a peace agreement between ourselves, Jordan, and Egypt. By all signs, we can see that their aim is to try to destroy us in the second round. We are not able to bring the dispute to an end, but they can, and then - the dispute will be over, on the condition that we win the next round…"

Ben-Gurion and Sharett disagreed on many things in addition to the question of allowing Palestinian refugees to cross Israeli territory. The two had totally different approaches to foreign policy. Whereas the dove-like Sharett favored diplomacy, compromise, and fostering a positive international image, the hawk-like Ben-Gurion prioritized national security above all. The differences of opinion between two of Israel's most important leaders became so great that the cabinet voted to replace Sharett with Golda Meir ten days after this letter was written, on June 18, 1956.

The refugee problem which Ben-Gurion and Sharett were discussing had become a perennial concern. After the independent state of Israel was proclaimed in May 1948, Israel attempted to consolidate its territory and protect itself against infiltration by hostile elements. To do so, Israel forced Palestinians in certain areas to leave. The consequent movement of thousands of people was known as the Palestinian Exodus of 1949-1956. Competition over this same territory, notably the Gaza Strip, exists to this day; consider, at the time of this writing (May 2021), the recent uptick in rocket attacks exchanged by Israel and Hamas, the Palestinian militant group.

Relations between Israel and its predominantly Arab neighbors, like Jordan and Egypt, had always been strained, but they further deteriorated over 1955 and 1956. Small-scale Israeli military objectives like Operation Black Arrow in February 1955, Operation Elkayam in late August 1955, and Operation Volcano in early November 1955 signaled an escalation in tension between Egypt and Israel; this would only further deteriorate until Suez the Crisis of Autumn 1956. That conflict was precipitated when Egyptian President Gamal Abdel Nasser nationalized the Suez Canal and banned Israeli shipping from the 90-year-old waterway connecting the Mediterranean with the Red Sea. Israel responded by invading Egypt; they were supported by British and French forces safeguarding their access to foreign oil.

Ben-Gurion's correspondent Moshe Sharett had served as the 2nd Prime Minister of Israel for nearly two years in 1954-1955. He served as Minister of Foreign Affairs between May 1948 and June 1956.

This item comes with a Certificate from John Reznikoff, a premier authenticator for both major 3rd party authentication services, PSA and JSA (James Spence Authentications), as well as numerous auction houses.

WE PROVIDE IN-HOUSE SHIPPING WORLDWIDE!

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