** Arab Jewish conflict over Palestine chronology

Arab-Israeli Conflict: Chronology

Jewish children in Jerusalem
Figure 1.--The conflict between Arabs and Jews has a long history, predating the Israeli-Palesinian which came to head in 1947 when the United Nations voted to authorize partition. This June 4, 1948 press photo shows Jewish children being outfitted with British helmets. The press cation read, "They're not toy hsats here: Kids everywhere like trench helmets as playthings. These two little Jewish boys on King George Avenue in Jerusalem in Jerusalem like theirs too. But their helmets aren't altogether for fun. Shells have fallen in thei section of Jerusalem in Arab-Jewish fighting.

The Israeli-Palestinian Conflict is often dated from the World War II era. Jews were a primary target of the NAZIs ans many Arans, especisally the Palestinians sided with the NAZIs. After the War, Jews understanably pushed for theor own country. The issue came to ahead in 1947 when the United Nations voted to partition the British mandate of Palestine between its Jewish and Palestinian population. The background to the conflict, however, goes back many years before that. Here we are assessing the conflit beginning in the 19th century. Of course the conflict between Arabs and Jews predates the Palestnian-Israeli conflict. We have compiled a chronological assesstment of related developments both before and after the United Nations Partition. Oppression of Jews in boh Europe and the Middle East led to the creation of the Zionist movement in the 19th century. There is a vast difference of opinion over this conflict. Of special importance is the emigration over time to Palestine. Of course the Romans did not suceed in expelling all Jews and some Jews klived in Palestine even before the foundation of the Zionist movement. Many people including suposedly well read journalists like Helen Thomas seem to think that Israelis have European prigins. Many do, but even more have Middle Easyern origins. Over time, Jews have fled from persecution in Middl Eastern countries. Many were actually expelled. There is a great deal of basic historical fact available on the conflict.

The 19th Century

The Isreali-Palestinian conflict began in the 19th century, although the two groups trace their claims to the land back to Biblical times. That is not to say that Arab desrimination against the small Jewish population in Palestine and elswhere in the Muslim world began in the 19th century. It is to say the beginning of the dynamic that would give Jews the capability of defensing themselves began in the 19th century. Most Jews in the 19th century lived in Europe. There were, however, Jewish communities of varying size located throughout the Middle East. Except for Russia after centuries of isolation and repression, European Jews had achieved a high degree of integrtion in civil society. Most European Jews had been emancipated and were full citizens. Pogroms in Russia during the 19th century had driven many Jews to Western Europe and America. This resulted in rising anti-Semitism, but this was partially restrained by the force of law in Eyrope and America. The situation of Jewish communities in the middle East was highly variable. Most European Jews saw their future as citizens in the various countries where they lived. Most were highly assimilated. Zionism gained grown with the Russian Pogroms, but until the rise of the NASIs in Germany during the 1930s, Zionism was supported by only a small minority of Jews. This basic outline is historical fact. Virtually everything else about the conflict is a manter of contention.

The 20th Century

Zionism continued in the early 20th century as a minority movement among European Jews. World War I (1914-18) changed the dynamic both for the Arabs and Jews. The War destroyed the Ottomon Empire, but left Psalestine now within the British Empire. The British had appealed to both the Arabs and Jews for support during the War. Britain tried to compromise and promote democratic institutions in Palestine. The Arabs resisted in part because of the secular nature of British instututions. The rise of NAZIism in Germany generated increasing support for Zionism among European Jews. The Holocaust convinced many Jews that they had to have a state that would protect them. Arab resentment of European imperialism generated considerable support for the NAZIs before and during World War II (1939-45), an intelectual commitment that still lingers in the Muslim world. After World War II, the United Nations partitioned Palestine and Arab irregulars launched attacks against Jews (1947). When the Isrealis declared independence the neigboring Arab states invaded (1948). Somehow the Isrealis without a professional military or heaby sarms managed to survive. The Arab states refused to accept Israel and financed by the Soviet Union built up large modern militaries as well as supported guerilla attacks against Israel. The Isrealis prevailed in a series of wars (1956, 1967, and 1973). In the process the Isrealis occupied the West Bank and Gaza Strip as well as the Golan Heights (Syria) and Sinani (Egypt). Egypt decided to make peace with Israel, but the other Arab states continued to refuse to recognize Israel. Egypt as part of the Camp Daid Accords retrieved the Sinai and recognized Israel (1978). Fatah guerilla terror continued attacks on Israel. Arab public opinion even in Egypt continued to be hostile to Israel. Fatah attacks resulted in an Isreali excursion into Lebanon (1982). The Palestinians finally agreed to make peace as part of the Oslo Peace Process (1993). This turned the West Bank and Gaza Strip over to the Palestinian Authority. Continuing Isrealis security concerns meant a continuing Isreali presence. The Isreli settlenents also were a continuing impediment to peace.

The 21st Century

Tragically the Isreali-Psalestinian conflict has continued into the 21st. President Clinton made a major effort to reslove the conflict (2000). His effort has been much-criticized, but it was aserious effort. Primeminister Barak grugingly made major concessions. Chair Arafat refused to do so, probably accurately gudeging Palestinian public opinion. Since the Camp David talks hosted by President Clinton, the situation has deteriorated. The Palestinians launched a new Interfada. This has undermined the fragile Palestinian economy. Israel concluding that there was no real partner for peace has attempted to withdraw, bith from Lebanon (200?) and Gaza (200?), but the Hesbolah militia in Lebanon armed by the Iranians and the Palestinians in Gaza have still launched attacks across the border. Palestinian suiside attacks have led to the Isreali contruction of a wall in the West Bank. Fatah's commitment to the peace process. Hamas rejects the peace process, although when speaking to the Western media is often ambigious. The rise of Islamic militancy has resulted in Hamas challenging Fatah for control of the Palestinian Authority. Hebolah attacks accross the border caused a costly war (2006). The rivalry between Fatah and Hamas has led to armed clashes beginning to take the chracter of a civil war, causing further suffering among the Palestinian people.


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Created: 3:48 AM 6/13/2010
Last updated: 3:48 AM 6/13/2010