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Encyclopedia > General Zionism

General Zionists were centrists within the Zionist movement. The term was used to describe members of the Zionist Organization who were not members of any particular faction at a time when the Zionist movement was becoming polarized between Labour Zionists and Revisionist Zionism. In 1922, various non-aligned groups and individuals established the Organization of General Zionists as a non-ideological party witin the ZO. Eventually, however, General Zionists became identified with European liberal and middle class beliefs in private property and capitalism. From 1931 to 1945 the General Zionist movement was divided into two factions due to differences over social issues, economics and labour issues (ie the Histadrut). In the years following the establishment of the state of Israel in 1948, the General Zionists moved towards the right in opposition to the hemony of the Mapai party and the Labour Zionist movement over Israeli politics.

General Zionists were represented in the Knesset for the first 13 years of Israel's existence and were, at one point, the second largest party. They merged with the Progressive Party to run as the Liberal Party of Israel in 1961 and then joined with the right wing Herut movement to run as the Gahal electoral bloc which ultimately became the modern Likud party.

Prominent Zionists associated with General Zionism include Chaim Weizmann and Israel Rokach.

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  Results from FactBites:
Zionism - ExampleProblems.com (6889 words)
Zionism is a political movement and an ideology that supports a Jewish homeland in the Land of Israel/Palestine, where the Jewish nation originated and where Jewish kingdoms and self-governing states existed at various times in history.
While Zionism is based heavily upon religious tradition linking the Jewish people to the Land of Israel, the modern movement was originally secular, beginning largely as a response to rampant antisemitism in late 19th century Europe.
Generally though, such statements were propaganda invented by leaders who did not foresee the subsequent conflict with the Arabs and thought of them as allies against the big empires whom they viewed as the main obstacle.
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