Palestine Land Development Company

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land-purchasing company of the world zionist organization.

Established in 1908 by Arthur Ruppin, a German Jew, as part of the World Zionist Organization, the Palestine Land Development Company (PLDC) used Jewish National Fund and private monies to purchase and populate tracts of land with Jewish immigrants. It acquired extensive holdings in northern Palestine (Galilee), particularly in the 1920s and 1930s.

The PLDC bought nearly 90 percent of its land from large landowners, rather than individual peasants. Many of the transactions created controversy, such as the PLDC's purchase of 240,000 dunums (144,000 acres, 60,000 ha) of fertile land in the Jezreel valley between 1921 and 1925, its purchase of 30,000 dunums (18,000 acres, 7,500 ha) at Wadi Hawarith in 1929, and its assumption of the Lake Huleh concession in 1934.

see also jezreel valley; ruppin, arthur; world zionist organization (wzo).


Laquer, Walter. A History of Zionism. New York: Holt, Rinehart, and Winston, 1972.

Shafir, Gershon. Land, Labor and the Origins of the Israeli Palestinian Conflict, revised edition. Berkeley: University of California Press, 1996.

elizabeth thompson

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Palestine Land Development Company

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