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THE ARAB / ISRAELI CONFLICT

The Joint

THE ARAB / ISRAELI CONFLICT

With George S. Khoryama………….

A Brief note on how it all started.  This note is culled and good to share.

Arab antagonism toward Israel is understandable. In 1917, Britain had pledged itself in the Balford Declaration to the establishment of a ‘national home’ for the Jewish people in Palestine, while also promising the Arabs that the civil and religious rights of non-Jewish would not be prejudiced.  The Zionists took the pledge as promising the conversion of Palestine into a Jewish state; they considered Palestine, a British mandate after the collapse of the Ottoman Empire during World War I as their ancient and traditional home.

Britain’s trouble became serious after Hitler’s assumption of power in Germany – and impossible after World War II.  Hitler had slaughtered six million Jews in his concentration camp. Few of the survivors wished to remain in Europe with its unhappy memories. Many migrated to Palestine.  The Jews were not determined to establish a Jewish state, while the Arabs feared that migratilon would crowd them out of what they also regarded as their right homeland. British troops were unable to keep the peace between the Arabs and Jews. And under this circumstances Britain – already weakened by the war, forced to contain its commitments through the world – decided to end its burdensome mandate over Britain.

In November 1947, the United Nations decided to partition Palestine into two independent states – one Jewish and the other Arab. The Arabs refused to accept this solution; however, they wanted Palestine to become an Arab state.  On May 10, 1948, as Britain ended its mandate the Jews proclaimed the state of Israel, and the army of the Arab league (Egypt, Jordan, Lebanon, Syria and Saudi Arabia) invaded the new state. In the ensuing war, the Israeli army defeated the larger Arab armies. The state of Israel became a fact of political life.

The Arabs however refused to recognize it as such. Though they signed an ar

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