The Israeli-Palestinian Conflict: Cause and Effect

690 words | 3 page(s)

The nation of Israel is a densely populated country located on the Mediterranean Sea, and is the only nation in the world that has a majority Jewish population (Israel Profile.) Since Israel was created in 1948, it has been involved in an intense and constant struggle with the Palestinian population as well as its other neighbors in the Arab nations regarding rightful ownership of the territory. It is considered to be precious because it has been a holy land for Christians, Muslims, and Jews. This paper will summarize the conflict, with an emphasis on the cause-and-effect of the conflict.

The regions consisting of Israel, Gaza, and the West Bank were formerly known as Palestine; two different groups have been disputing who owns the land for decades. Israeli Jews and Palestinian Arabs have been warring over this conflict with occasional truces that have typically ended when one side or another has taken some aggressive action which resumed hostilities. The ancestors of Jewish Israelis began migrating to the area in the 1880s and believe that their claim to the land is based on a promise from God as well as the need for a safe haven from widespread hostility toward the Jewish people, i.e. anti-Semitism (A Brief History of the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict.) The Palestinian Arabs dispute that, saying that they are the lawful inhabitants of the territory because their people have resided there for centuries.

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After World War II ended, the former British mandate of Palestine was divided in order to create the state of Israel; this was the beginning of the Zionist movement whose goal was a homeland for the Jewish people that were scattered throughout the world (Israel Profile.) The Holocaust perpetuated by the Nazis led to a global acknowledgment of the Jewish state, and Israel announced its independence in 1948 when the UN voted to divide Palestine. This caused the beginning of conflict between the two groups for the next 60+ years. Shortly after the state of Israel was proclaimed in May 1948, both the existence of Israel and the partition of Palestine were rejected by the Arab states. As a result, the armies of Iraq, Syria, Lebanon, Jordan, Saudi Arabia, Yemen, and Egypt attacked the new country but were ultimately defeated by the Israeli army (Shah.)

Although the Jewish people successfully created a homeland, there was never an internationalization of Jerusalem or a separate state of Palestine. Instead, Palestinians were pushed out of their former land and placed into refugee camps in Jordan, Egypt, and other areas. In addition, many Jews were expelled from surrounding Arab countries (Shah.) Palestinians have resisted control of the Israelis over their territory since Israel was established. As a result, the history of the region since 1948 has consisted of conflict and tensions between Israel and the Palestinians, who are represented by the Palestine Liberation Organization. During the following decades, a series of invasions occurred in the region, including the 1956 invasion by France, Britain, and Israel of the Sinai Peninsula because Egypt had nationalized the Suez Canal, worrying that these major powers were in fear of additional loss of power and the Canal represented a major economic trading route entry point for the West to the rest of the Middle East (Shah.)

Another war occurred in 1967, when a preemptive strike by Israel against Egypt, Syria and Jordan was waged against Arab troops who had amassed across its borders. The effective that battle was that Israel captured significant plots of land such as the Golan Heights, the West Bank, and the Gaza Strip. The impact of those victories resulted in a continual battle between all of the nations involved for the Arab states to take back the territory that they lost in the 1967 war. A series of peace negotiations, UN resolutions, and other attempts at achieving peace in the region have been unsuccessful, and the region is considered to be one of the most worrisome, problematic and challenging conflict in the world.

  • “A Brief History of the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict.” 2009. the New York Times. Web. 17 March 2014.
  • “Israel Profile.” 17 March 2013. BBC News. Web. 17 March 2013.
  • Shah, Antique. “The Middle East Conflict: a Brief Background.” 30 July 2006. Global Issues.org. Web. 17 March 2014.

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