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Theodor Herzl, born Binyamin Ze'ev Herzl, also known as Hozeh HaMedinah, literally "Visionary of the State" (May 2, 1860 to July 3, 1904) was an Austro-Hungarian journalist and the father of modern political Zionism and in effect the State of Israel. He was born in Pest to a Jewish family originally from Belgrade, Serbia. As a young man, Herzl was engaged in a Burschenschaft association, which strove for German unity under the motto Ehre, Freiheit, Vaterland ("Honor, Freedom, Fatherland"), and his early work did not focus on Jewish life. His work was descriptive rather than political. As the Paris correspondent for Neue Freie Presse, Herzl followed the Dreyfus Affair, a notorious anti-Semitic incident in France in which a French Jewish army captain was falsely convicted of spying for Germany. He witnessed mass rallies in Paris following the Dreyfus trial where many chanted "Death to the Jews!" Herzl came to reject his early ideas regarding Jewish emancipation and assimilation, and to believe that the Jews must remove themselves from Europe and create their own state. Herzl grew to believe that anti-Semitism could not be defeated or cured, only avoided, and that the only way to avoid it was the establishment of a Jewish state. Beginning in late 1895, Herzl wrote Der Judenstaadt, the Jewish State. It was published February, 1896 to immediate acclaim and controversy. In the book he outlines the reasons that the Jewish people, who so desire, to return to their historic homeland, Palestine. The book and the Herzl's ideas spread very rapidly throughout the Jewish world and attracted international attention. Supporters of existing Zionist movements such as the Hovevei Zion are immediately drawn to, and ally with, Herzl. Controversially, Herzl and his ideas are vilified by establishment Jewry who perceive his ideas both as threatening to their efforts at acceptance and integration in their resident countries and as rebellion against the will of God.
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A call for the Jewish people to leave Eastern Europe and emigrate to, preferably, Palestine, or Argentina in the late 1800s.About the Author:
Theodor Herzl (1860-1904) was an Austro-Hungarian journalist and the father of modern political Zionism.
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