The Israeli–Palestinian conflict is the ongoing struggle between Israelis and Palestinians that began in the mid-20th century.
An early United Nations plan to give each group part of the land failed, an Israel and the surrounding Arab nations fought several wars over the territory. Today’s lines largely reflect the outcomes of two of these wars, waged in 1948 and 1967.
In the late 1800s a group in Europe decided to colonize this land. Known as Zionists, they represented an extremist minority of the Jewish population. Their goal was to create a Jewish homeland. Hitler’s rise to power, combined with Zionist activities to sabotage efforts to place Jewish refugees in western countries, led to increased Jewish immigration to Palestine, and conflict grew.
UN Partition Plan,
In 1947 the United Nations decided to intervene. Under considerable Zionist pressure, the UN recommended giving away 55% of Palestine to a Jewish state despite the fact that this group represented only about 30% of the total population, and owned under 7% of the land.
Conclusion of 1947-1949 War
By the end of the war, Israel had conquered 78 percent of Palestine; three-quarters of a million Palestinians had been made refugees; over 500 towns and villages had been obliterated. For decades Israel denied the existence of this population, former Israeli Prime Minister Golda Meir once saying: “There were no such thing as Palestinians.”
1967 War and USS Liberty
Israel conquered still more land. Following the “Six Day War,” Israel occupied the final 22% of Palestine that had eluded it in 1948 the West Bank and Gaza Strip. Since, according to international law it is inadmissible to acquire territory by war, these are occupied territories and do not belong to Israel. It also occupied parts of Egypt and Syria.
There are two primary issues at the core of this continuing conflict. First, there is the inevitably destabilizing effect of trying to maintain an ethnically preferential state, particularly when it is largely of foreign origin.
Second, Israel’s continued military occupation and confiscation of privately owned land in the West Bank, and control over Gaza, are extremely oppressive, with Palestinians having minimal control over their lives.
According to the Oslo peace accords of 1993, these territories were supposed to become finally a Palestinian state. However, after years of Israel continuing to confiscate land and conditions steadily worsening, the Palestinian population rebelled.