The Arab Israeli conflict, what is its importance? World History

Key players...significant events...anything you know!

1 Answer
May 5, 2018

It is a regional conflict


In 1948, the state of Israel was founded by Ben Gurion. The idea was based on Zionism which rejected the Jewish diaspora and wanted jews to have their own state. This idea was first put forward by an Austrian jew called Theodor Herzl, at the time of the Dreyfus scandal in France at the very end of the nineteenth century. He thought just like Europe had seen the emergence of nations based on collective identities, the Jews should be inspired by it and he first contemplated places such as Uganda or Madagascar as adequate. Quickly, the holy land of Palestine began the main focus.

The Balfour declaration was the first step in 1917 to establish permanent Jewish settlements in Palestine. The British Prime Minister and the Rothschilds played a major role in promoting it. This land had been of the Ottoman Empire and became a British protectorate after WWI. The first jews who wanted to have this holy land back had started to settle in the years 1880s. Zionism was a burning issue long before the creation of the state of Israel, since many Jews in those days considered the creation of such a state as a heresy since it is rebellion against God. Some still have this position today.

From the very beginning the existence of this state was a conflict since it was colonization. People who lived in Palestine were mostly Arabic muslims along with significant Christian and Jewish communities, some of them strongly opposed the creation of Israel. In 1967 and 1973, Arabic nations embracing PanArabism (Nasser, the Egyptian figure was its main figure) waged war on Israel to help their Palestinian brothers(Arabs who live in Palestine). In 1973, the Western and American support of Israel led to the oil shock since Arabic nations increased the price of oil as a revenge.

Key leaders include Yasser Arafat( on the Palestinian side) and Shimon Peres, Yitzhak Rabin, Menachem Begin( on the Israeli side). Despite peace accords in 1978(in Camp David) and in 1993(in Oslo), the situation has always been chaotic, intifadas took place in the years 1980s and 2000s and tensions between the two side remained high. Zionists have always put forward the idea that diaspora led to disasters such as the persecutions of Jews during WWII in Europe whereas the Palestinians and their allies accuse Israel of ethnic cleansing.

The USA and Nato in general have been the main allies of Israel and have been crucial in helping Israel defend itself. Israel would not exist without the US financial and military help. Israel along with American and western involvements have been a source of instability in the Middle East for the past forty years, indeed the overthrowing of Arabic leaders like Saddam Hussein in Iraq and Gaddafi in Lybia led to complete chaos.