Bruno Kreisky Foundation

for Human Rights

Simha Flapan (Israel)

Simha Flapan was born in 1911 in Poland and emigrated in the thirties to Palestine. He became secretary general of the Zionist party, Mapam, and went on to become their director of Arabic affairs from 1959 until the mid-1970s. He was the founder and former editor-in-chief of the newspaper „New Outlook“ that promoted an Arabic-Jewish approach to issues.

As a historian and politician, he was best known for his book; „The Birth of Israel: Myths and Realities.“ The book was published in the year of his death and was looked upon as a demystification of the story of Israel’s founding. Simha Flapan died in 1987 in Israel.

Flapan recognized the rights of the Palestinian population with respect to their political self-determination. Through the founding of the Arab Book Publishing Houses, the Jewish-Arab Institute and the newspaper „New Outlook“ he contributed significantly to peace research. His efforts helped to develop Jewish-Arab dialogue and balance the power dynamic. Simha Flapan received the Bruno Kreisky Prize in 1981.