David Ben-Gurion – Israel’s Founding Father

David Ben-Gurion, Eilat, 1958

Credit:wikicommons/Clandestine Immigration and Naval Museum, Haifa

David Ben-Gurion

Lived: October 16, 1886 – December 1, 1973

Offices held: Prime Minister of Israel (twice), Israeli Minister of Defense, Executive Head of the World Zionist Organization

Languages: In addition to his native Yiddish and Hebrew, David Ben-Gurion also learned Turkish, English, Russian, French, German, and later in life, Spanish and ancient Greek.

Why you should know him: Born in Poland, David Ben-Gurion made aliyah (immigrated) to the Holy Land in 1906, where he led the struggle to establish the state of Israel in 1948. As one of the early leaders of the Zionist movement, he helped establish the state’s institutions, oversaw construction of the national water carrier, helped create what is now the Israel Defense Forces (IDF), and established new towns and cities. Ben-Gurion also oversaw Operation Magic Carpet, the airlift of Jews to Israel from Arab lands. He was the first and third Prime Minister of Israel, and was heavily involved in Israeli politics until his retirement in 1970.

In his own words: “In Israel, in order to be a realist you must believe in miracles.”

Tags: David Ben-Gurion History Israel Israelis You Should Know

More From Fellowship Blog

Faces of The Fellowship: Abir and Sharon

Fellowship Blog

Faces of The Fellowship: Abir and Sharon

Abir and Sharon, a married couple in Israel with a young family, met while serving in the IDF.

face masks for elderly during COVID-19 crisis

Fellowship Blog

Project Spotlight: Face Masks to 3,000 Elderly

Thanks to your generosity, The Fellowship approved the distribution of disposal and reusable face masks to 3,000 elderly in Israel.

Yitzhak Shamir, Haifa port

Fellowship Blog

A Son in the Land of Israel

The seventh Prime Minister of Israel, Yitzhak Shamir served as a military leader and politician before and after the establishment of the modern Jewish state.

Subscribe to our Newsletter

Stay informed about issues affecting Israel, the Jewish people, Jewish-Christian relations, receive daily devotionals, and more.