Politics and Society in Modern Israel
Prof. Nitzhia Shaked
by Matthias Fuchs
Theodor Herzl is regarded as the most prominent figure
of modern Zionism. In this paper I will try to trace the steps that made an
assimilated Jew, who was totally removed from his ethnic and religious
background, even ashamed of it, turn into the man who formulated the basic
ideas that should serve as a blueprint for the return of the Jews to their
homeland and ultimately the establishment of the state of Israel. I will
examine Herzl’s special brand of Zionism, his political, functional approach as
opposed to romantic or practical versions of the movement. He may not have been
the greatest theorist of Zionism, but he surely was the man who pulled the at
that time obscure movement into the limelight of public attention, especially
with the publication of his book Der Judenstaat (The Jewish State). To
conclude, I will take a look at his unsuccessful efforts to win the German
Kaiser and the Turkish Sultan for the establishment of a sovereign state in Palestine, efforts that can be seen as the climax of his
Jew: Budapest and Vienna
Theodor Herzl was born on May 2, 1860 in the city of Budapest in the Austro-Hungarian Empire. His ancestors had
been assimilated Jews from the town of Semlin. His grandfather Simon Loeb Herzl had been fascinated
by the work of Rabbi Alkalai, who is seen as one of the first Zionists, and it
is not unlikely that he conveyed some of the interest to his grandson.
Young Theodor once got thrashed in school when he could not answer the
teacher’s questions about the Exodus in the Bible. Thirty years later he said “today
there are scores of teachers who would like to thrash me because I remember the
Exodus from Egypt only too well.”
After the death of his sister the family moved to Vienna, where Theodor started to study law at the
university. Roman law profoundly influenced him, and the notion that a small
minority can represent the legal interests of a whole people when those can’t
express themselves was later to appear in Der Judenstaat. His literary
talent, the ability to present his thoughts in a compelling and crystal clear
manner, was already observable at an early stage. He led a literary club in
school and wrote many articles and satires at university.
At this time already the ambivalence of Herzl’s
character can be observed. He is a Jew himself, but he sought assimilation, he
tries to distance himself from what he saw as Jewish materialism, from the
“stock exchange Jews”, by striving to become a playwright. He internalizes all
the anti-Semitic stereotypes of his time. That is why he joined a dueling
fraternity in Vienna, the Albia, because he did not want to be seen
as a physical coward, a Jewish coward.
He derided Jewish ghetto principles like the ban of intermarriage and spoke in
favor of complete assimilation.
At that time in the early 1880s there were the first
anti-Semitic sentiments in Austrian public opinion. Herzl comes upon Eugen
Duehring’s The Jewish Problem as a problem of Race, Morals and Culture,
a strongly racist book that attempts to present a scientific basis for
anti-Semitism. Herzl was shocked by what he has read, but still his confidence
seemed not shaken: “But even these nursery tales of the Jewish people will
disappear, and a new age will follow in which a passionless and clear-headed
humanity will look back upon our errors even as the enlightened men of our time
look back upon the middle ages.”
At a memorial for Richard Wagner in 1883, anti-Semitic
tendencies broke out even in Herzl’s own fraternity. Herzl had become more and
more of an outsider in the Albia, and the new anti-Semitism made it
impossible to participate any longer. A year later he was admitted to the bar
in Vienna. He started writing for the Neue Freie Presse,
which was at that time Austria’s leading newspaper, becoming an acclaimed
feuilletonist. The theater pieces he wrote at that time were less successful;
many were not performed or harshly criticized. Herzl traveled around Europe, was impressed by the metropolis of London. The suicide of his closest friend Heinrich Kana
dealt him a serious blow, however. He became more thinking, interested in
Jewish topics. The bitter sigh of an ailing old man in Lourdes who tried to heal himself with the supposedly holy
water was interpreted by Herzl as the sigh of all Jew. He saw the miserable
destiny of the Jews before his eyes and pondered the idea of writing a Jewish
Herzl in Paris
Herzl accepted the offer to become Paris correspondent for the Neue Freie Presse and
moved there in March 1892. Some years earlier Edouard Drumont’s book La
France Juive had appeared and had become a national bestseller. Drumont’s
opinion was that the Jews were parasites and their emancipation had to be
withdrawn. The public was receptive of these ideas, partly due to economic
problems of the Third Republic. At a trial against Drumont in 1892, Herzl heard for
the first time “A bas les Juifs!” from Drumont’s followers. But he still
believed that French anti-Semitism was a transient phenomenon. This can be seen
in an ironic remark he made, that the Jews have always been the scapegoats for
the problems of the masses. “And so every genuinely conservative statesman will
extend a certain moderate measure of protection to the Jews in order that they
With rising anti-Semitism in the following years,
Herzl made numerous attempts to come up with a solution for the problem. He
dreamed of dueling leading Anti-Semites to decapitate the movement, he thought
that Jews should lay their hopes on socialism, as this was a universal,
egalitarian movement, he called for universal baptism of all Jews, and he still
believed that complete assimilation would solve all the problems.
In 1892 the so-called Panama trial took place, uncovering corruption in the French
government. It gives Herzl an insight into the “faulty workings” of a
parliamentary democracy, an experience that explains why he later favored an
autocratic government for the Jewish state.
But his attitude gradually changes. He makes the
ghetto-situation responsible for the appearance of many Jewish anti-social
qualities and concludes that “our original character cannot have been other
than magnificent and proud; we were men who knew how to face war and how to
defend the state; had we not started out with such gifts, how could we have
survived two thousand years of relentless persecution?”
This shows that he started to accept his Jewish roots.
He also believed that the emancipation of Jews after
the French Revolution was a mistake, that it takes more for assimilation than
the guarantee of rights on paper, but he was not yet ready to draw the ultimate
In 1894 he writes the New Ghetto, a play in
which a young Jew stands loyal to his family even though they try to betray
their business partners. With this play Herzl completed the “inner return to
And that same year the Dreyfus trial took place, the single event to which many
of his biographers and Herzl himself attributed his conversion to Zionism.
transition to Zionism
Captain Alfred Dreyfus, a Jew, had been accused of
spying for Germany, and although it later turned out that he was
innocent and had been framed, the public had already made up its mind that he
was guilty. Herzl had to cover the trial for his paper. Dreyfus was convicted
and degraded of his military rank in a public ceremony. That ceremony saw anti-Semitic
riots that Herzl had never witnessed before. When the crowd called “A mort les
Juifs!” it became clear to him that the French public wanted to condemn all
Jews, not only this one.
And if the French, the civilized French, were capable of such feelings, what
about the other peoples of Europe? The conclusion came to him as inevitable, that the
hatred of the Jews was too deeply rooted in the hearts of the people. The only
solution for Herzl seemed to be emigration of the Jews from Europe.
Herzl biographer Alex Bein and Herzl himself say that
the Dreyfus trial made him a Zionist.
Jacques Kornberg however believes that Herzl’s Zionism
is rooted in his own ambivalence between Jewish self-disdain and pride and had
developed already before the Dreyfus trial. Herzl had not converted to Zionism
because of external threats to the Jews or because he prophetically envisioned
the catastrophe of the holocaust, but because of his inner, psychological
Max Nordau had pointed out that assimilated Jews had
burnt their bridges to their own cultural heritage in anticipation of
integration into the Christian societies. But when the backlash of
anti-Semitism occurred, they found themselves defenseless, they could not
return to their refuge in the ghetto.
That was why Herzl was in a deep conflict with himself, too. At the outset, he
hated everything Jewish, but when anti-Semitism rose in Austria in the 1880s and even the Liberals betrayed their
Jewish allies, he found himself powerless and rejected. That is why he needed
to establish the Jews as one nation, as one people with their own national
pride, in their own country, because then they would be regarded as equals
among the European peoples. ”Zionism served as an unservile mode of
assimilation, through Jews would no longer seek to be embraced by gentiles as
compatriots. Jews, transformed, would now win – even command – gentile
recognition as equals in the European state-system.”
So Herzl rather wanted to restore personal honor, and not just create a refuge
for the Jewish people. And by recreating this mythical image of the physically
strong, courageous and self-sufficient Jew he found a way to embrace his own
Jewishness and finally resolve the nagging ambivalence he had felt for so long.
In Kornberg’s opinion, his Zionism thus did not appear full blown and suddenly
as Bein suggests, but developed gradually to that point.
The next step for Herzl was to enter the political
arena. He met Baron de Hirsch, one of the wealthiest Jewish financiers. De
Hirsch had spent enormous sums to settle Jews in Argentine, with rather minor
success. Herzl tried to win him for his emerging Zionism. He wanted to settle
Jews in Palestine, but the movement was not to be conducted in the
“philanthropic” fashion of de Hirsch. Herzl thought that the philanthropic
approach, the settlement of poor Eastern Jews on land purchased by rich “stock
exchange” Jews and their continuous support by those, would debase the
character of the people. The Jews had to be made strong first, they had to settle
and farm the land without being dependent on outside support. To this end, the
people had to be educated and transformed.
He outlined his plan for the movement in his diary: the need for a loan of 10
Million Reichsmark, the need for propaganda to win the masses and for symbols
of unity, like a flag. And he expressed his dream for the Jewish homeland for
the first time: “The Promised Land where we can have hooked noses black or red
beards, and bow legs without being despised for it. Where we can live at last
as free men on our own soil and where we can die peacefully in our own
fatherland […] So that the offensive cry of ‘Jew!’ may become an honorable
appellation, like German, Englishman, Frenchman – in brief, like all civilized people.”
But his first attempts in the field of politics were
rather discouraging. He failed to win de Hirsch and the Rothschilds for the
plan. In his despair, he even wrote to the retired Bismarck in the hope of support, but he did not even answer.
Frustrated by his lack of support, he wrote to de Hirsch: “For the Jews I will
still try to do something – but not with them.”
He also expressed his anger in a letter to the chief Rabbi of Vienna,
Guedemann: “These wretched or cowardly men […] are enough to make one give up
the work in disgust; but we must think, all the same, of the poor and decent
Jews. They are the majority.”
But Guedemann supported him, and so did the famous Max Nordau, who he met in Paris. He also convinced Rabbi Singer and Sir Samuel
Montagu, but he soon realized that he had to stir the masses in order for the
success of his idea. Thus, he wrote a pamphlet that he calls Der Judenstaat
(the Jewish State), which instantly made him famous and spread his idea of
At the beginning of his pamphlet, Herzl stressed that the Jews are
one people, that they cannot disappear into the community of others. The
emancipation of Jews came too late, the ghetto had made them too different, and
their attempts of assimilation and competition with the gentile middle class
had only spurred anti-Semitism.
So a Jewish state was needed and this is the plan, in short: “Political
principle will provide the basis, technology will provide the means, the
driving force of the great machine will be the Jewish tragedy, the guiding idea
will be the Jewish state.”
The two main means
that had to be created in order to enable the success of the plan are the
Society as a legal representative for all the Jews in the world,
formed after the “gestor”-principle of Roman law, and the Jewish Company, a
stock company that is to provide the financial backing for the operation. It
was to be based in London, England, a country that was not anti-Semitic. Herzl wanted to make use of
the immense Jewish wealth for his purpose, wanted to give it a direction.
As for the proceeding of the immigration, poor, eager Jews should
make the first step. As soon as they had built up an infrastructure and created
a market, the richer Jews would be attracted as well and would follow. The
movement should be promoted by Rabbis and with local organizations be brought
into every corner of Europe.
The state that was to be created should be sovereign. If it were
controlled by another power that power would surely ban immigration as soon as
the native population would feel threatened by Jewish immigration. It is
interesting to note from today’s point of view that Herzl at that point did not
give a lot consideration to possible problems with the Arab inhabitants of Palestine. Herzl
did not want the system of a parliamentary republic for the new state, rather
that of an aristocratic Republic. He had covered the parliamentary proceedings
in France long enough and thought that that system was seriously flawed, a
breeding ground for mediocrity and empty words.
He favored a government of experts, experienced, aristocratic statesmen. Here
we can see the influence of the Prussian autocratic system, which Herzl
admired, in spite of all the German anti-Semitism. The new state should be a
social and technological model state, with a semi-socialist character (no
extreme wealth/poverty, but also individualism). His naïve belief in the
blessings of technology led him to think that all problems that the territory
in Palestine presented to the settlers could be overcome with giant projects for
irrigation and production of hydro-electricity. He did not consider the
language question as important although there had already been attempts to
revive Hebrew. He envisioned a Switzerland-like language commonwealth, with
German as the dominant language.
Herzl also thought that the more Jews leave Europe, the faster
anti-Semitism would vanish, thus alleviating the situation for the Jews who
Let us take a closer look at the history of Zionism so far and at
Herzl’s special rendition of it. The underlying axiom is that all Jews are a
single entity with national and not only religious attributes. This idea sets
Zionists apart from advocates of assimilation.
All kinds of Zionism share several common denominations: 1. the present
situation is defective, 2. the solution is a territorial ingathering and
autonomy/sovereignty, 3. the means by which to achieve these goals were to be
achieved are political activism, settlement and a revival of the Jewish culture
and national spirit.
There has always been the dream among many of the scattered Jews, to
return one day to Eretz Israel and there had been many false Messiahs (Reubens, Zevi) who promised
to lead the people back to their land.
Early Zionists were the Rabbis Alkalai and Kalischer. In the 19th
century people like Moses Montefiore, Benjamin Disraeli, Ferdinand Lasalle and
even Napolean supported the idea of the return of the Jews to Palestine. After
the pogroms in Russia in 1881 intellectuals in Russia formed
numerous “Haveve Zion” groups to start small-scale settlements in Palestine.
But it was not until Leo Pinsker’s book Auto-Emancipation
that there was a clear theoretical foundation for the modern idea of Zionism.
Pinsker said that the world saw the Jews as an “eerie figure of a corpse
wandering among the living.”
The solution could only be self-help, the establishment of an own state and a
national consciousness. Pinsker was like Herzl writing out of a feeling of
wounded honor. He was the first political Zionist, but not a leader like Herzl
and could not express his thoughts in a compelling way.
There are different opinions how to classify the main schools of
Zionism. One definition describes the coexistence of political (top-to-bottom
approach to influence world leaders to grant the Jews a state in Palestine),
practical (bottom-to-top approach to establish facts by settling in Palestine without
legal guarantees) and cultural/romantic Zionism (revival of Hebrew language and
Jewish national spirit as the first steps). Zionism is also differentiated
between functional and organic Zionism. Herzl and Leo Pinsker
would be exponents of the first direction, which takes an external view, saying
that the “problems of the Jews” have been brought about by the ghetto-status
and calls for negotiations with the outside world to achieve its goals. The organic
approach on the other hand concentrates on the internal dimension of the
problem, the “problem of Judaism”. It calls for the preservation and
regeneration of the Jewish national identity. The main exponent was the Russian
Asher Ginzberg, known as Ahad Ha’am, one of Herzl’s most influential rivals. He
believed that the Jews could actually survive in the diaspora, all they needed
was some kind of cultural center. Ginzberg also rejects the Haveve Zion idea
and calls instead for a solution of the “spiritual crisis”.
Although no one had formulated the idea of the Jewish state as
clearly as Herzl before, his ideological contribution to the movement is
overshadowed by what he did to publicize it.
His Zionism was an original thought, however, as he did not know the work of
Pinsker or Hess’s Rome and Jerusalem.
In his views laid down in Der Judenstaat, he sees
assimilation as an illusion, because the Jews lost their “assimilability” in
the middle ages and their emancipation brought about the fear of the gentiles.
Herzl “understood” Anti-Semitism, because he himself had internalized all the
Zionism was for him a way of self-improvement. He thought his idea could be
feasible as it was in the self-interest of the Anti-Semites to get rid of the
Jews and negotiate a solution. He wanted to get a charter for a sovereign state
first, and then start a mass migration. Small-scale immigration à la Hoveve
Zion was seen by him as detrimental.
The Jewish quest for a homeland was to be established as an
international political problem, as Herzl believed that oppression had turned
the scattered Jews into one people again. But he also chose nationalism out of
functional reasons, because it seemed the only way to unite the Jews for a
common goal. Herzl’s Zionism is also free from religious connotations and does
not address the “redemption” ideas of the Bible. It is purely founded on
His liberalism also influenced his idea of Zionism. Although he
rejected the emancipation, the new state in Palestine was to be founded on
precisely the same ideals that were at the base of the emancipation ideology,
and the people who would live there should be like enlightened European Jews –
so the new state was like a copy of an idealized European state for Jews.
Herzl’s other main Zionist work was the novel Altneuland (old
new land) that was published in 1902. Here he described the Jewish state
through the eyes of a visitor some 25 years after its establishment. And this
state is exactly like Herzl imagined it in Der Judenstaat. A politically
modern state with enlightened citizens ruled by an aristocratic leadership,
with socialist elements (farm cooperatives, free schooling). It is rather a
state for Jews than a Jewish state, as religion is not playing a dominant role.
It is a technologically advanced society with canals and elevated trains – and
all these benefits are enjoyed by Jews and Arabs alike. Herzl made it clear
that this was not a utopian novel, but that it could well become reality.
Congress – the movement starts
Herzl’s Judenstaat had the effect of a bomb on the
Jewish societies of Europe. While many of the assimilationists and many liberal
German newspapers harshly criticized him, it caused overwhelming enthusiasm in
many Jewish communities, especially in the east. Some already started to see
him as a new Moses, to lead them into the Promised Land. With new energy, Herzl
went to work on the most important tasks that lay before him: the establishment
of the Jewish Society and the Jewish Company, diplomatic efforts in the
European capitals and in Turkey and the creation of publicity organs. The Jewish
Society is established in 1897, with Herzl as its president, the Jewish
Colonial Trust (as a stock company) one year later, and in 1901 the Jewish
National Fund, whose purpose it is to purchase land in Palestine. In 1897 Herzl also founded Die Welt as an
organ for the Zionist movement.
Herzl met two important men. One is Reverend Hechler,
who got him into contact with the Grand Duke of Baden, the uncle of the German
Kaiser Wilhelm. In 1896 he had an audience with the Grand Duke, who seemed very
receptive for Herzl’s ideas.
The other is Philipp Michael von Nevlinski, a former Polish diplomat and rather
colorful figure. He claimed to have excellent contacts with the Sultan of
Turkey. But when Herzl went with him to Constantinople, he
could only talk to some Turkish politicians, not to the Sultan himself.
Herzl also tried to get financial support from the
Rothschild family again, but they favored the Haveve Zion idea of small-scale
immigration. The only way left to go is to ensure the financial support of the
masses and to achieve this end, Herzl and his followers set out to organize a
Zionist congress in 1897. The main purpose was to unite the different Zionist
movements to achieve one common goal and also to take the “Jewish problem” out
of the hands of the philanthropists, as Herzl calls them. But the idea of the
Congress faced resistance from everywhere. Many feared that the Congress would
provoke a sharp reaction from the Anti-Semites. It was to be held in Munich,
but because of protests of Munich Jews it had to be moved to Basel.
On August 29, 1897, 197 delegates convened in Basel.
There was a great diversity in viewpoints and countries of origin. Delegates
from Russia, England, France, even America came. There were orthodox Jews, free-thinkers,
assimilationists and followers of Herzl. Wolffsohn had created a flag for the
event: a white flag with two blue lines and a blue Star of David. In his
opening speech, Herzl stressed the importance of a legal basis before an actual
immigration could take place. He also emphasized that he wanted to make the
Congress a permanent institution. Max Nordau’s speech received even more
attention. He talked about the need of a Jewish homeland for a humanistic world
order, and he also promoted that image of the “muscle Jew”, who could farm the
land himself and defend himself against external threats.
This Congress was the first open political
demonstration of Jews for almost 2000 years.
The delegates agreed on a program, including settlement, the organization of
the movement, a revival of national consciousness and to seek the support of
the powers. This was quite vague, but for Herzl unity was the prime goal.
Some future trends in the movement were already
visible at that point of time, the question of settlement without legal basis,
language and especially religious concerns.
The effect of the Congress was profound especially on
the delegates and on the isolated Eastern European Jews, as they saw that the
Jewish people actually existed. It strengthened Herzl’s role as the leader
(although he would have preferred and “unpersonal” movement).
And Herzl felt he had ultimately returned to his people.
There were other problems, however: no real progress
with Turkey and lack of funds to undertake political action. Ahad Ha’am clearly
challenged Herzl and said that “the salvation will come by prophets, not by
400 delegates attended the second Congress, as the movement gained momentum.
Although Herzl tried to reconcile, there were still a lot of differences, and
he severely attacked the Rabbis “who pray for Zion and attack it at the same
Herzl and the
In 1898 an episode took place that made Herzl believe
he was about to see his great dream fulfilled, and yet it once again his
expectations were utterly disappointed. Herzl, who admired the autocratic
German Empire and its Prussian traditions, had always hoped for German support
for his plan.
The Grand Duke of Baden told Herzl that the Sultan of
Turkey seemed to be favorably inclined towards the idea of a Jewish state in
Palestine. The Duke introduced Herzl to Count Eulenburg, a close friend of the
Kaiser and one of the most influential men in Germany at that time. Herzl
managed to win Eulenburg for his cause as well, and Eulenburg agreed to discuss
Herzl’s plans with Wilhelm. Herzl proposed a Jewish state under German
Wilhelm was surprisingly enthusiastic about the
proposal, as Eulenburg confirmed in a letter to Herzl. “His Majesty has stated
his readiness to intervene with great vigor and – as far as practicable –
urgently to present your cause to the Sultan.”
A happy Herzl wrote to Wolffsohn: “A dream suddenly comes to realization.”
A meeting with Reich Chancellor Hohenlohe and Foreign Minister Buelow in
Potsdam on the other hand, was not so convincing. They remained skeptical.
Kaiser Wilhelm went for a visit to Turkey and
Palestine in 1898, mainly to substantiate the German influence in the
disintegrating Ottoman Empire and also to visit the Holy Land. The visit was
called a pilgrimage. He agreed to grant Herzl a secret audience on the trip. On
October 17, the two men met in Constantinople. Herzl soon learned that the
driving force behind Wilhelm’s enthusiasm was his anti-Semitism and the
prospect to get rid of the German Jews. Herzl nevertheless felt deeply moved by
Wilhelm’s personality, just as Wilhelm was impressed by Herzl.
He made the point that Zionism would dissolve the revolutionary parties in the
Wilhelm said he would definitely ask the Sultan for a chartered company under
German protection. They agreed to meet again in Jerusalem.
This is the first time that Herzl actually traveled to
Palestine, and the bad living conditions of the Jews who settled there made him
depressed. On November 2 he met the Kaiser in his tent outside Jerusalem, this
time the conversation was a little cooler. In his many conversations with
Wilhelm, Sultan Abdulhamid obviously had rejected the idea brusquely, so that
Wilhelm could not pursue the matter any further. The Sultan’s government had
long since taken the position not to make concessions to Zionism, despite
indications to the contrary. The Sultan said: “I cannot sell even a foot of
land for it does not belong to me but to my people. The Jews may spare their
millions. When my empire is divided, perhaps they will get Palestine for
nothing. But only our corpse can be divided. I will not agree to vivisection.”
Wilhelm had also changed his mind about Zionism.
Realizing that the other European Powers would not accept a German satellite
state in the Middle East and being far from the influence of Count Eulenburg he
abandoned the idea as quickly as he had picked it up.
Based from the beginning on wishful thinking, and
faced with insurmountable objective and subjective obstacles, Herzl’s dream of
a Jewish state under the Kaiser’s protection never had a chance of coming true.
The Uganda idea and Herzl’s
Although Herzl’s one-man-diplomacy had not
been successful, Zionism had become a mass movement. In 1902 Chamberlain
offered Uganda to Herzl as a homeland for the Jews. Herzl had always been strongly
in favor of Palestine and had used other options only to improve his
negotiating power. But he thought it inappropriate to reject it, because the
fact that a great power negotiated with him equaled a recognition of his
He brought the
idea before the sixth Zionist Congress in 1903, where it met with great
opposition and almost split the Zionist movement. Herzl was seen by many as a
traitor who had abandoned the idea of settling in Palestine for a piece of
Africa without any meaning to the Jewish nation whatsoever.
It was said of Herzl that it was his good fortune not to have known the Jewish
people, that this gave him the courage to act. But in this case it was to his
delegation was sent to Uganda to investigate, but their report was unfavorable.
Plus, the British had already retreated from the idea again.
The plan was
declared dead in December and in the following months Herzl tried to
consolidate his position among the powers again to win them for a concerted
measure against Turkey. His prospects looked better this time, but he was not
to reap the fruits of his efforts. Theodor Herzl died on July 3, 1904 at the
age of 44. He did not live to see the Balfour Declaration of 1917 or the
eventual establishment of the state of Israel in 1948.
Theodor Herzl was a statesman without a state. He had
undergone a painful transformation from an assimilated Jew to a Zionist. Thanks
to his own qualities he impressed monarchs and intellectuals. He aroused
admiration and opposition at the same time, but nobody could ignore his
magnetic personality, his intelligence and sincerity, and his never ceasing
He was the founder of political Zionism, but he died, before the effects of his
work took place. Had he lived longer, we can only speculate what might have
happened in the history of European Jewry.
Bein, Alex: Theodore Herzl. A Biography,
New York, Atheneum 1970
Kornberg, Jacques: Theodor Herzl. From
Assimilation to Zionism, Bloomington: Indiana University Press 1993
Shimoni, Gideon: The Zionist Ideology,
Hanover: Brandeis University Press 1995
Roehl, John C.G.: Herzl and Kaiser Wilhelm
II: A German Protectorate in Palestine?, in Robertson, Ritchie and Edward
Timms (eds.): Theodor Herzl and the Origins of Zionism. Edinburgh: Edinburgh
University Press 1997
Friedman, Isaiah: Herzl and the Uganda
Controversy, in: Robertson, Ritchie and Edward Timms (eds.) Theodor Herzl
and the Origins of Zionism. Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press 1997