Publication Date


Document Type


First Advisor

Kuby, Emma

Degree Name

B.A. (Bachelor of Arts)


Department of History


This research project utilizes primary sources from diplomatic communiques, public speeches, political debates, and autobiographies of Israeli political elites in an attempt to better understand early Israeli democracy. Specifically, this project aims to frame this development of Israeli democracy and its institutions in the context of the 1948 Palestine War. The political elites of the Palestinian Jewish community who established the State of Israel came from various political, ethnic, religious, and linguistic backgrounds. This diversity in thought, combined with the threat of violence both within the new Israeli borders and outside of them, elevated the problem of creating a stable, secure Israel amidst a violent conflict. The choice of democracy as Israel’s form of government partly stemmed from the idea that democracy could be used as a tool to unify and secure the fledgling Israeli state both internally and externally. The importance of this research lends itself to better understanding the democratic origins of Israel as well as the larger conversation on conflict’s relationship with democracy.