Israeli-Palestinian Conflict Essay

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The conflict between Palestinian Arabs and Jews is a modern phenomenon, which began around the turn of the 20th century. Although these two groups have different religions (Palestinians include Muslims, Christians and Druze), religious differences are not the cause of the conflict. It is essentially a struggle over land. Until 1948, the area that both groups claimed was known internationally as Palestine. But following the war of 1948-49, this land was divided into three parts: the state of Israel, the West Bank (of the Jordan River) and the Gaza Strip (1).
Jewish claims to this land are based on the biblical promise to Abraham and his descendants, on the fact that this was the historical site of the Jewish kingdom of Israel (which was …show more content…

Following World War II the British requested that the recently established United Nations determine the future of Palestine. After investigating the cituation, they came to an agreement that the country would have to be divided in order to satisfy the needs and demands of both Jews and Palestinian Arabs. Jews had acquired by purchase 6 to 8 percent of the total land area of Palestine amounting to about 20 percent of the arable land (7).
The UN partition plan divided the country in such a way that each state would have a majority of its own population, although some Jewish settlements would fall within the proposed Palestinian state and many Palestinians would become part of the proposed Jewish state. The Zionist leadership accepted the UN partition plan, although they hoped somehow to expand the borders allotted to the Jewish state (4). The Palestinian Arabs and the surrounding Arab states rejected the UN plan.
Fighting began between the Arab and Jewish residents of Palestine days after the adoption of the UN partition plan. The Arab military forces were poorly organized, trained and armed. In contrast, Zionist military forces, although numerically smaller, were well organized, trained and armed. On May 15, 1948 Zionist leaders proclaimed the state of Israel. Neighboring Arab states (Egypt, Syria, Jordan and Iraq) then invaded Israel claiming that they sought to "save" Palestine from the Zionists. The war ended ended in 1949 (8). The country once

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