A Letter From The Publisher: Jun. 22, 1981

In its first cover story on Israel, dated Aug, 16, 1948, TIME hailed the newborn nation and Prime Minister David Ben Gurion with some prophetic words: "Although in years to come, fighting might break out again and again ... it was to stop pondering the settled question of whether there would be a Jewish state, time to start asking what kind of nation Israel was." In the 33 years since that historic moment, TIME has never stopped looking for the answer....

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