TEL AVIV (Sep. 23)
Israel Premier David Ben Gurion last night issued a message to the Jews of the world pointing out the accomplishments of the Jewish state during the past year and outlining some of the problems which must be solved in the coming months. The address was broadcast throughout Israel.
“A thousand years of antagonism to Jewry has not ceased even after the establishment of the state,” he declared. “To this very day there exist opponents against the very soul of Israel–Jewry’s right to return to its homeland–and opponents against the very heart of the state–the eternal capital of Jerusalem. We will not forget that we found understanding, goodwill and friends in the East and the West in our liberation struggle, which is great corroboration that our struggle is just.”
The Premier underlined the difficulties and basic problems which are yet to be solve: resettlement; immigration; rehabilitation of the desert areas; housing for immigrants; the nigh cost of living and the encouragement of foreign capital investments in Israel. He emphasized that “above all stands the security problem, for which the defense army stands guard with strength and determination.
“Despite our difficulties we greet the advent of the new year with a powerful confidence in our strength and our possibilities,” he added. “In the past year we have increased our population by 260,000,” and the total population of the country is now 957,000, he reported. He also listed the fact that 130 new settlements were established–58 by new immigrants and 13 by war veterans–while the arable lands of the country have been increased by 400,000 dunams, approximately 100,000 acres.
In summation, he declared that “the present generation will not retreat in the face of its problems, but will accomplish its mission fully, with love, confidence and trust in the Almighty. This will be a new year of immigration, settlement, building, work, progress, security; a year of peace, freedom and friendship among the nations,” he conclude.