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conflict between Israel and Palestine began

How The Conflict Between Israel And Palestine Began And Why It Cannot Be Ended

Israeli-Palestinian Conflict the October 7 attack on Israelis by the Palestinian group Hamas and the subsequent Israeli response was the deadliest episode of conflict between Palestine and the Jewish state since the Yom Kippur War (1973). This triggered the largest mass exodus of Palestinians in the last 75 years and was a logical continuation of the long-standing confrontation over land and freedom that has plagued the entire Middle East region, which has gained a reputation as the hottest spot on the planet.

London’s intention to create a state for the Jewish people in Palestine. Year 1917

In fact, the beginning of the smoldering and flaring up conflict was not even laid in 1948 with the creation of the state of Israeli-Palestinian Conflict , but more than a hundred years ago. The Declaration of British Prime Minister Arthur Balfour in 1917 proclaimed London’s intention to create a “national home for the Jewish people” in Palestine, which was then under Ottoman rule. In this revised statement, we address the Zionist movement’s conviction in the rightful claim of Jews to the land of Jerusalem, also known as Zion. Britain’s promises to the Jewish community, its persecution by the Nazis and the Holocaust during World War II are cited as reasons that prompted tens of thousands of Jews to migrate to Palestinian land.

A truck carrying Egyptian prisoners travels towards an Israeli army convoy heading towards the Sinai

UN resolution on the division of Palestine. Year 1947

In the aftermath of World War II, intense conflicts erupted between Palestinian Arabs and Jewish migrants in the Holy Land, resulting in a tragic loss of hundreds of lives. In 1947, the UN adopted a resolution dividing Palestine into two independent states: Jewish and Arab, with Jerusalem under international control. The Palestinians refused to accept the resolution, and that is when the first violent conflict between the parties began.

First Arab-Israeli War. 1948-1949

The First Arab-Israeli War ended in 1949 with an Israeli victory. The region known as Palestine was partitioned into three distinct areas: the State of Israeli-Palestinian Conflict , the West Bank, and the Gaza Strip. For many Palestinians, today’s Israel Defense Forces (IDF) attacks are reminiscent of the tragic experience of their ancestors in 1948, when militias and then the army of the newly formed Israel destroyed more than 500 Palestinian villages and towns. Then the first mass exodus began.

More than 750,000 Palestinians have been uprooted from their land and forced to take refuge in the Gaza Strip, one of the most densely populated areas in the world, covering 365 square kilometers and home to 2.3 million people. Palestinians call this period the Nakba, or disaster. For those now, in October 2023, fleeing to the south of the Gaza Strip after an Israeli evacuation order, the possibility of a “second Nakba” seems very real.

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Historical Injustices Faced by Arabs in Israel

For nearly two decades, Arabs who remained in Israel experienced systematic discrimination and lived under military rule, which resulted in the deprivation of their basic civil rights. This period saw the expropriation of a significant portion of their land, and deliberate underfunding of Arab-Israeli communities, leading to persistently high levels of poverty.

In 1964, a coalition of Palestinian factions established the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) under the leadership of Yasser Arafat, with the objective of advocating for armed struggle and the establishment of an independent Arab state in lieu of Israel. The organization gained international attention through its audacious attacks on Israelis and various hijackings.

Six-Day War. 1967

On June 5, 1967, the Six Day War broke out between Israeli-Palestinian Conflict and its Arab neighbors. Israel gained control over the Palestinian territories of the West Bank, East Jerusalem, Gaza, and the Sinai Peninsula, along with the Syrian region of the Golan Heights. The war forced most Palestinians to become refugees again and marked the beginning of Israel’s decades-long occupation of the Palestinian territories.

Israeli Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin and PLO head Yasser Arafat

Israeli Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin and PLO head Yasser Arafat sign a peace treaty in the presence of US President Bill Clinton (1993).

Yom Kippur War Of Independence. 1973

The Yom Kippur War began on October 6, 1973 and lasted 19 days. Read all the details about the course and results of the Fourth Arab-Israeli War in our article on this topic.

The first intifada. 1987-1994

Israel’s perception of the Palestinian population under its control was one of relative calm, despite the ongoing expansion of Jewish settlements in the Gaza Strip and West Bank, as well as the appropriation of Arab lands. Additionally, Palestinians were often utilized as an economical source of predominantly manual labor within Israeli-Palestinian Conflict .

In 1987, the illusion was shattered as young Palestinians rose in rebellion. The intifada commenced with protesters hurling stones at Israeli police, leading to an escalation into military confrontations. Subsequently, the Israeli army conducted extensive arrests and imposed collective punishments. The first intifada ended in 1993, when then-Israeli Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin and Arafat signed the Oslo Accords, which declared the PLO to be the representative of the Palestinian people and recognized Israel’s right to exist.

How The Conflict Between Israel And Palestine Began

Second intifada. 2000-2005

The Second Palestinian Intifada, which began in 2000 and ended five years later, resulted in autonomous PLO control of the West Bank and Gaza Strip. The second intifada distinctly set itself apart from the initial uprising due to the inclusion of suicide bombings targeting Israeli civilians orchestrated by groups like Hamas, alongside the heightened magnitude of the Israeli military’s response. By the time the uprising ended in 2005, more than three thousand Palestinians and about a thousand Israelis had died.

Confrontation between Israel and Gaza Strip Hamas

A year later, Hamas won the elections and gained control of the Gaza Strip, expelling the PLO representatives from it. Gaza’s post-disengagement status remains controversial. Israel asserts that it no longer considers itself under occupation. The UN claims the opposite, since Israel continues to control the airspace and territorial waters around the enclave, as well as (together with Egypt) access to its territory. According to the UN, 81 percent of Gaza’s population lives in poverty. 63 percent of Gazans complain of lack of food, and the unemployment rate was 46 percent.

Over the past 15 years, Hamas and Israel have continued to fight each other. Since 2008, official figures report that approximately 6,400 Palestinians and 300 Israelis have lost their lives in the continuing violence, not including recent casualties. Hamas launched thousands of rocket attacks on Israel, and Israeli-Palestinian Conflict responded with massive airstrikes.

Israel has carried out large-scale military operations in Gaza, including Cast Lead (2008, 22 days), Pillar of Defense (2012, 8 days), and Protective Edge (2014).

The killing of more than 1,300 Israelis by Hamas now takes the conflict to a new and previously unseen level. More than two thousand Palestinians, including hundreds of children, have already become victims of Israeli retaliatory bombing, and a possible ground operation planned by the IDF could multiply the number of casualties on both sides. This time, the Israeli authorities announced a complete blockade of Gaza and set the goal of the complete elimination of Hamas, which, according to some experts, means the second expulsion of Palestinians from their lands in history.

FAQs:

Q1: What is the significance of the Balfour Declaration in 1917?

The Balfour Declaration, issued in 1917, was a statement by the British government supporting the establishment of a “national home for the Jewish people” in Palestine. It played a significant role in the eventual establishment of the State of Israel.

Q2: How many Palestinians were uprooted during the First Arab-Israeli War?

It is estimated that around 700,000 Palestinians were displaced during the First Arab-Israeli War in 1948.

Q3: What were the Oslo Accords in 1993?

The Oslo Accords, signed in 1993, were a series of agreements between Israeli-Palestinian Conflict and the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) that aimed to establish a framework for peace negotiations and self-governance for Palestinians in the West Bank and Gaza Strip.

Q4: What were the outcomes of the Six-Day War in 1967?

The outcomes of the Six-Day War in 1967 included Israel’s capture of the Sinai Peninsula, Gaza Strip, West Bank, and Golan Heights. This significantly reshaped the political and territorial landscape of the region.

Q5: What were the main events of the First Intifada?

The First Intifada, which began in late 1987, was a Palestinian uprising against Israeli occupation. It involved widespread protests, civil disobedience, and acts of violence. The events included demonstrations, strikes, and clashes with Israeli forces.

Q6: How did the Second Intifada differ from the First?

The Second Intifada, which started in 2000, was characterized by a higher level of violence and armed conflict compared to the First Intifada. It involved suicide bombings, shootings, and large-scale military operations.

Q7: How many conflicts have occurred between Hamas and Israel since 2008?

Since 2008, there have been several conflicts between Hamas and Israel. Some notable ones include the Gaza War in 2008-2009, Operation Pillar of Defense in 2012, and Operation Protective Edge in 2014.

Q8: What are the major military operations conducted by Israel in Gaza?

Some major military operations conducted by Israel in Gaza include Operation Cast Lead (2008-2009), Operation Pillar of Defense (2012), and Operation Protective Edge (2014). These operations were aimed at countering threats from militant groups in the Gaza Strip.

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I am a dedicated full-time author, researcher, historian, and editor. These areas of expertise encompass art, architecture, and the exploration of common threads across diverse civilizations. I hold a Master's degree in Political Philosophy and serve as the Publishing Editor at Evidence News.

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