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Round 3: Arab-Israeli Conflict Since 1900


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Title: Round 3: Arab-Israeli Conflict Since 1900

Round 3 Arab-Israeli Conflict Since 1900
  • Events, Treaties, and People

Theodore Herzl Founder of Modern Political
  • Jewish writer and journalist born in Budapest,
  • Assigned Paris post by Vienna Neue Freie Presse ,
  • Impacted greatly by Dreyfus Affair, 1894
  • Wrote Der Judenstaat, 1896
  • First to call for immediate internationally
    recognized action to establish Jewish national
  • Zionist Congress held in Basel Switzerland 1897
  • Palestine chosen as the site and World Zionist
    Organization founded for financial base

World War I The Defeat and Dismemberment of the
Ottoman Empire
Husein-McMahon Correspondence 1915-1916
  • Husein ibn Ali, emir of Mecca and ruler of Saudi
    Arabia was the official leader of the Arab revolt
    against the Ottomans
  • Initially allied with the Ottomans, Husein
    received evidence that the Ottoman government was
    planning to depose him at the end of the war.
  • An exchange of letters with British High
    Commissioner Henry McMahon convinced him that his
    assistance on the side of the Triple Entente
    would be rewarded by an Arab empire encompassing
    the entire span between Egypt and Persia, with
    the exception of imperial possessions and
    interests in Kuwait, Aden, and the Syrian coast.
  • Henry McMahon was the British High Commissioner
    for Egypt at the time
  • McMahon's promises were seen by Arab nationalists
    as a pledge of immediate Arab independence. They
    also believed that the undertaking was violated
    by the region's subsequent partition into British
    and French League of Nations Mandates under the
    secret Sykes Picot Agreement of May 1916 and by
    the Balfour Declaration of November 1917 which
    favoured the creation of a Jewish national home
    in Palestine

Sykes Picot Agreement 1916
The Balfour Declaration
  • Britain gained control of Palestine after World
    War I and endorsed Foreign Secretary Arthur J.
    Balfour's idea of a "national home" for the Jews.
  • The British also promised to respect the rights
    of non-Jews in the area, and to allow Arab
    leaders to have their own independent states.
  • There was a critical misunderstanding, however
    The Arabs thought Palestine was to be an
    independent Arab state, which was not what the
    British intended.

1920 Mandate
  • Syria was part of the Ottoman Empire from 1516
    until World War I.
  • Its border with what is now Israel was
    established in 1920 by France and Great Britain
    as part of the postwar division of Ottoman Syria.
  • If Israel were to retain control of land west of
    the 1920 border, it would control the eastern
    shore of the Sea of Galilee and key water

Armed Conflict 1920-1930s
  • The British began governing Palestine in 1920.
    They announced a Jewish homeland would be created
    in the region, but that it would exist within
    Palestine and not encompass the entire country.
  • The first Arab riots against Zionism took place
    that same year, and in 1929 a dispute at the
    Wailing Wall ignited an Arab riot and a call for
    an Islamic jihad.
  • Consequently, Jews began arming themselves, and
    both sides waged terrorist attacks.

Impact of the rise of Nazism
  • The rise of Nazism in Europe reinvigorated
  • The British raised Jewish immigration quotas for
    Palestine from about 5,000 in 1932 to about
    62,000 in three years.
  • Arabs launched a series of strikes and boycotts.
  • A British commission concluded that Palestine
    should be partitioned into Jewish, Arab and
    British states, something the Zionists accepted
    reluctantly. But the Arabs, enraged that they
    might be removed forcibly from the proposed
    Jewish state, rejected the idea.
  • For 12 years between 1933 and 1945, Adolf Hitler
    persecuted Jews and other minorities. The Nazis
    systematically killed an estimated 6 million

Impact of World War II
  • Jewish refugees from the Holocaust flooded into
    Palestine during World War II, their plight
    stirring support for a Jewish state.
  • Arabs formed the Arab League as a counterweight
    to Zionism, and in 1947 the United Nations voted
    to divide Palestine into Arab and Jewish states,
    the latter occupying 55 percent of the land west
    of the Jordan River.
  • Jerusalem was designated as an international

1947-48 Partition UN Resolution 181
  • In November 1947 the United Nations ordered the
    partition of Palestine into a Jewish state and an
    Arab state, and the end of the British Mandate by
    May 15, 1948.
  • The Arab powers of the Middle East rejected the
    partition plan, and hours after Zionist leader
    David Ben-Gurion declared Israel a state on May
    14, the forces of Egypt, Iraq, Syria, Transjordan
    and Lebanon invaded the new country.
  • Bitter fighting ensued, but by July 1949 Israel
    had repulsed the invasion, established borders
    similar to Palestine under the mandate, joined
    the United Nations, and been recognized by more
    than 50 governments around the world

1949 Armistice
  • In a series of armistices with Egypt, Jordan,
    Syria and Lebanon in 1949, Israel established
    borders similar to those of Palestine during the
    British Mandate.
  • Jordan retained the West Bank of the Jordan River
    and Jerusalem was divided under Israeli and
    Jordanian rule.

Map of Areas seized in Arab-Israeli War 1948-49
David Ben-Gurion (1886-1973)
  • Israels first Prime Minister
  • Organized single national military defense Israel
    Defense Forces
  • Encouraged Jewish immigration to Israel
  • 1952 secured reparations from West Germany for
    Holocaust victims
  • Menachem Begin, opposition leader not invited
    into coalition government
  • Retired to a kibbutz in 1953
  • Returned to public life as Minister of Defense
    and then Prime Minister to lead Israel during the
    Suez Crisis
  • Resigned as Prime Minister in 1963 and from
    politics in 1970

Suez Crisis 1956
  • In late October 1956, instigated by Britain and
    France during the crisis over Egypt's seizure of
    the Suez Canal, Israel invaded the Sinai
    Peninsula to destroy military bases.
  • Israel captured Gaza and Sharm el Sheikh at the
    tip of the Sinai Peninsula that controls access
    to the Gulf of Aqaba. It also occupied most of
    Sinai east of the canal.
  • According to plan, the British and French
    intervened in the conflict to enforce a U.N.
    cease-fire. The crisis ended in December when the
    United Nations stationed a peacekeeping force in
  • Israel withdrew in March 1957 after access to the
    Suez Canal was guaranteed by the UN.

A political crisis centered around the Suez Canal
in 1956.
1960s Growth of the Palestine Liberation Movement
  • Former Palestinian activist and Egyptian army
    soldier Yasser Arafat and Abu Jihad (Khalil
    al-Wazir) founded Al Fatah -- an acronym for the
    Palestine National Liberation Movement.
  • It grew rapidly through the 1960s to become the
    biggest and richest Palestinian force.
  • In 1969, Arafat became chairman of the Palestine
    Liberation Organization, a group formed in 1964
    as an umbrella for a number of Palestinian
    factions engaging in guerrilla warfare against
  • The U.N. General Assembly voted to grant observer
    status to the PLO in November 1974.

Six-Day War 1967
  • Egypt, Syria and Jordan mobilized their forces in
    spring 1967 Egypt closed the Gulf of Aqaba to
    Israeli shipping
  • Israel launched a preemptive strike June 5, .
  • Israeli air force destroyed Egypt's planes on
    the ground Israeli tank columns and infantry
    overran the Golan Heights, the West Bank of the
    Jordan River, including the Old City of
    Jerusalem, Gaza and the Sinai Peninsula.
  • The war was over June 10, ended by a
    U.N.-arranged cease-fire.

Land Taken During the Six-Day War
Palestinian Refugees
During the Six-Day War of 1967, Israel captured
territory from surrounding Arab nations.
Thousands of Palestinian Arabs living in those
areas fled to refugee camps administered by the
United Nations, like this one near Damascus in
southwestern Syria
Yitzhak Rabin, Israeli Chief of Staff
  • Rabin would later serve as Israels prime
    minister and sign the 1993 Accords crafted by
    Oslos foreign minister Johan Holst
  • Rabin was assassinated in September 1995 after
    signing an agreement expanding Palestinian
    self-rule and giving the Palestinian Authority
    control over six large West Bank towns

PLO activity in the 1970s
  • PLO was founded at a meeting of the Arab League
    in Jerusalem 1964 to form a body to focus various
    Palestinian nationalist groups
  • Fatah is one of the first groups to join
  • Artillery duels between Israelis and Palestinians
    based in Jordan, along with airline hijackings by
    Palestinian guerrillas, led to fears that Jordan
    might be taken over by the PLO.
  • Jordanian troops drove the PLO out of the country
    in 1971, and the PLO relocated to Lebanon.
  • In September 1972, a militant faction known as
    Black September killed 11 Israeli athletes at the
    Olympic Games in Munich, Germany.

Yom Kippur War 1973
  • Egypt and Syria attacked Israel October 6, 1973
    (during Yom Kippur, the Jewish holy day).
  • Intended to regain territories lost in the Suez
    and Golan Heights in 1967
  • Israel suffered heavy casualties but managed to
    repulse the attacks.
  • It even pushed Egyptian forces back across the
    Suez Canal and occupied its west bank before the
    belligerents agreed to another cease-fire
    arranged by the United Nations.
  • In a series of 1974 agreements Israel withdrew
    its forces back across the canal into Sinai and
    came to cease-fire terms with Syria.

Israeli troops question a captured Syrian soldier
in the 1973 Yom Kippur War.
UN Resolutions 242 and 338
  • After the 1967 and 1973 wars between Israel and
    the Arabs, the United Nations passed two
    measures Resolution 242 (November 22, 1967) and
    Resolution 338 (October 22, 1973) . The
    resolutions called for Israel to withdraw its
    troops from territories it had occupied during
    those wars. In turn, the Arabs were to recognize
    the right of Israel to exist.
  • Israel agreed to the resolutions, along with
    Egypt and Jordan, but the Palestinians refused
    until November 15, 1988, when Palestinian leader
    Yasser Arafat made the dramatic announcement that
    he accepted the resolutions as the basis for a
    political process.
  • By recognizing Israel's right to exist, the
    Palestinians hoped that the United States would
    lift its ban on talks with the Palestine
    Liberation Organization. But the United States
    added another stipulation for lifting the ban --
    that the PLO renounce terrorism. In December
    1988, Arafat issued a statement dictated to him
    by the U.S. State Department that the PLO
    "condemns individual, group and state terrorism
    in all its forms, and will not resort to it."

Camp David Accords, March 1979
  • In the Camp David Accords of March 1979, Egypt
    and Israel finally ended the war between them.
    Israel returned the Sinai Peninsula to Egypt, and
    Egypt recognized Israel's right to exist.
  • Sinai was partially demilitarized
  • Israel and Egypt opened official diplomatic
    relations for the first time in 30 years
  • Nothing was done to address Syrias claims to the
    Golan Heights
  • Arab League expelled Egypt
  • Anwar Sadat assassinated 1981

U.S. President Jimmy Carter with Israeli Prime
Minister Menachem Begin, left, and Egyptian
President Anwar Sadat at Camp David, Maryland, in
War With Lebanon 1982
  • Just a few weeks after withdrawing from the
    Sinai, Israeli jets in early June bombed PLO
    strongholds in Beirut and southern Lebanon in
    retaliatory raids.
  • The Israeli army invaded Lebanon and surrounded
    Beirut, halting negotiations with the PLO.
  • After 10 weeks of intense shelling, the PLO
    agreed to leave Beirut under the protection of a
    multinational force and to relocate to other Arab
  • The episode precipitated an intense leadership
    struggle among PLO factions. Israel had withdrawn
    from most of Lebanon by 1985, but it continued to
    hold a buffer strip along its border that it
    seized in 1978.
  • Israel withdrew from southern Lebanon in May

Palestinian Intifada, 1987
  • After 20 years of occupation, friction peaked
    again when Palestinians living in Gaza, the West
    Bank and Jerusalem rioted against the Israelis in
    what came to be known as the intifada, or
  • The demonstrations continued for years, and
    Yasser Arafat proclaimed that the PLO was the
    government in exile of a "State of Palestine."
  • The PLO formally recognized Israel's right to
    exist in 1988.
  • When peace talks began at Madrid Conference in
    1991, following the Persian Gulf War coalition of
    Arab-Western nations, however, the PLO was

Palestinians carry the body of a fellow
Palestinian suspected of collaborating with
Israel during the intifada in 1987.
1993 Oslo Accords
  • Under the guidance of Norwegian Foreign Minister
    Johan Holst, Israel and the Palestine Liberation
    Organization negotiated secretly in Oslo a
    "Declaration of Principles," signed in Washington
    on September 13, 1993, by PLO chairman Yasser
    Arafat and Israeli Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin.
  • Israel agreed to eventually withdraw troops from
    Gaza and the West Bank, except for the city of
    Hebron, and to Palestinian self-rule of those
  • In accompanying "Letters of Mutual Recognition,"
    Israel recognized the PLO as the legitimate
    representative of the Palestinian people and the
    PLO recognized Israel's right to exist.

Arafat and Rabins Historic Handshake
  • Rabin, Arafat and Israeli Foreign Minister Shimon
    Peres won the 1994 Nobel Peace Prize for their
  • Negotiations between Israel and the PLO today are
    based on the principles set down in the 1993
  • In February 1994, an extremist Jewish settler
    killed 39 Palestinians as they prayed in a West
    Bank mosque. Tensions were high.
  • Israel withdrew in May 1994 from Jericho on the
    West Bank and from Gaza.
  • In July 1994, Arafat entered Gaza and swore in
    members of the Palestinian Authority, which took
    control of education and culture, social welfare,
    tourism, health and taxation.

Oslo Accords A Summary
  • The Oslo accords are the foundation on which
    current peace negotiations between Israel and the
    Palestinians are based.
  • Officially called the "Declaration of
    Principles," the accords were negotiated secretly
    by Israeli and Palestinian delegations in 1993 in
    Oslo, Norway, guided by Norwegian Foreign
    Minister Johan Jorgen Holst.
  • They were signed at a Washington ceremony hosted
    by U.S. President Bill Clinton on September 13,
    1993, during which Palestinian leader Yasser
    Arafat and Israeli Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin
    shook hands, ending decades as sworn enemies.
  • The accords laid out the long-term goals to be
    achieved, providing that issues of final borders,
    the status of Jerusalem, Israeli settlements and
    refugees would be negotiated in the "permanent
    status negotiations."
  • On September 28, 1995, at another White House
    ceremony, Israelis and Palestinians signed
    another deal known as the "Interim Agreement" or
    "Oslo 2." The 400-page pact allowed for a second
    stage of autonomy for the Palestinians, giving
    them self-rule in the cities of Bethlehem, Jenin,
    Nablus, Qalqilya, Ramallah, Tulkarm, parts of
    Hebron and 450 villages, while allowing
    Israeli-guarded Jewish settlements to remain.

Israel and Jordan Make Peace 1994
  • July 1994 Israeli prime minister Yitzhak Rabin,
    right, and King Hussein of Jordan, left, sign a
    peace agreement ending 46 years of war and
    tension between their countries.
  • This initial agreement paved the way for a full
    peace treaty, signed in October 1994 on the
    Israeli-Jordanian border.
  • The treaty settled long-standing disputes over
    land and water rights, and pledged cooperation in
    areas including trade and tourism.

First Elections of the Palestinian
Authority January 20, 1996
  • In the first-ever elections held by Palestinians,
    Arafat was the overwhelming choice as president
    of the Palestinian Authority.
  • 88 others chosen to sit on Palestinian
    Legislative Council cabinet chosen by Arafat was
    approved by the Legislative Council
  • In Israel, a massive bus bomb set off by Islamic
    extremists killed 25 and wounded dozens in the
    run-up to the prime minister election.
  • Hard-line Likud Party leader Benjamin Netanyahu
    defeated Shimon Peres in a close race.
  • Netanyahu and Arafat pledged to work toward a
    final peace treaty.
  • The Israeli government decided later that year to
    end a freeze on construction in the occupied
  • Clashes continued between Palestinians and Jewish

Hebron vs east Jerusalem, 1997
  • The West Bank town of Hebron was returned to
    Palestinian control after 30 years under the
  • But Netanyahu approved a large new Jewish
    housing project in eastern Jerusalem.
  • New violence broke out. Among the incidents were
    the detonation of suicide bombs in an outdoor
    market in Jerusalem that killed 15 and wounded
  • An extremist Palestinian group called Hamas
    claimed responsibility, and the Israeli Cabinet
    insisted the peace talks would continue only when
    the terrorism ended.

Wye River Accords 1998
  • After a yearlong stalemate and a marathon 21-hour
    session mediated by U.S. President Bill Clinton,
    Netanyahu and Arafat signed a land-for-peace deal
    October 23 at Wye Mills, Maryland.
  • Netanyahu froze the deal two months after signing
    it, saying that the Palestinians failed to meet
    their security commitments.
  • It called for
  • a crackdown on terrorists,
  • redeployment of Israeli troops,
  • transfer of 14.2 percent of the West Bank land
    to Palestinian control,
  • safe passage corridors for Palestinians between
    Gaza and the West Bank,
  • the release of 750 Palestinians from Israeli
    prisons and
  • a Palestinian airport in Gaza.

Wye River Memorandum A Summary
  • A security plan to crack down on violence by
  • Israeli troop redeployment from an additional
    13.1 percent of West Bank land, to take place
    over a 90-day period.
  • A 14.2 percent transfer of West Bank land from
    joint Israeli-Palestinian control to Palestinian
  • The revocation of clauses in the Palestinian
    National Charter that are hostile toward Israel.
  • The guarantee of two corridors of safe passage
    between Gaza and the West Bank.
  • Israeli commitment for third-phase troop
    redeployment from the West Bank.
  • The release of 750 Palestinian prisoners in three
  • The opening of a Palestinian airport in Gaza.

Ehud Barak, Labour prime minister, 1999
  • Moderate Labor candidate Ehud Barak unseated
    Netanyahu in the May prime minister election,
    winning by a record margin.
  • Israel released 200 Palestinian prisoners and
    began transferring West Bank land to Palestinian
    control as part of the terms of the Wye accords.
  • In May 2000 Barak ordered the pullout of Israeli
    troops from the nine mile security zone along the
    Lebanon border
  • UN had called for pullout since 1978

Ariel Sharon Likud/Kadima Prime Minister 2001-2006
  • A former soldier and brigadier general, Sharon
    was known for his hardline approach to
    Israeli-Palestinian issues
  • 1990s Sharon advocated Jewish settlement in the
    Occupied Territories (the West Bank, Golan
    Heights, and Gaza Strip).
  • In 2001 advocated unilateral withdrawal from Gaza
    and West Bank territories
  • December 2001 In response to Palestinian suicide
    bombings destroyed and confined Arafat in his
    compound at Ramallah until he sought medical help
    in France shortly before his death in November
  • Broke with Likud Party in 2005 to form Kadima
  • Suffered stroke January 2006 succeeded by Ehud

Mahmoud Abbas First Prime Minister of the
Palestine Authority, 2003
  • Mahmoud Abbas appointed new cabinet ministers,
    and his government was approved by the
    Palestinian legislature.
  • Arafat retained the final say over negotiations
    with Israel.
  • Four months later, Abbas resigned, accusing
    Arafat of undermining his authority by refusing
    to give him control of the Palestinian
    Authority's security organizations.
  • After Arafat died in November 2004, Abbas was
    elected as chairman of the Palestine Liberation
  • Arafat's Fatah movement also picked Abbas to be
    its candidate in the race for Palestinian
    Authority president. In January 2005, Abbas, also
    known as Abu Mazen, 69, claimed victory in the
    vote to replace Arafat.

Hamas victory in Legislative Elections 2006
  • Hamass charter calls for Israels destruction,
    and Hamas has engaged in terrorist activities.
  • Entered the political arena for the first time in
    2005 by participating in municipal elections in
    Gaza and the West Bank.
  • In the 2006 legislative elections Hamas found
    significant support among Palestinian Arabs
    residing in the West Bank, Gaza Strip, and East
    Jerusalem and won 76 of 132 seats in the
    Legislative Council.
  • Present members include religious leaders,
    sheikhs (Arab chiefs), intellectuals,
    technocrats, businessmen, young activists, and
    paramilitary fighters.
  • Hamas has provided social services to the needy
    in the 11 refugee camps in Gaza.
  • Providing social welfare and education through
    clinics, kindergartens, summer camps, medical
    services, sports programs, and job programs
  • Mosques and Islamic religious organizations have
    been Hamass most important vehicles for
    spreading its message and providing its services.
  • Most funds come from sympathizers abroad.
  • European Union (EU) and the United States have
    labeled Hamas a terrorist organization funds
    raised for Hamas in Europe and the United States
    have been seized and the organizations
    fundraising ability has been curtailed.

Outstanding Issues
  • Jerusalem
  • Palestinian State and Jewish Settlers
  • Palestinian Refugees and the Right of Return

Palestinian Refugees (1998)
Two U.N. refugee organizations track the number
of Palestinian refugees -- those seeking asylum
in other countries or those living in traditional
refugee camps. Many other Palestinians, whom the
United Nations does not classify as refugees,
have integrated into new societies and may hold
passports from other countries. It is therefore
difficult to determine an accurate population
count of Palestinians living around the world.
During 2000, some 900 Palestinians applied for
asylum in more than 40 countries, with the
highest number of applicants received by Denmark
(260) and Australia (130).
Road Map to Peace - April 30, 2003
  • Designed by the quartetpowers EU, UN, US and
  • First time an Israeli government accepted the
    principle of a Palestinian State
  • Three phase plan with completion dates
  • End to violence and terrorism
  • Final, comprehensive settlement of conflict by
  • Creation of an independent, viable, democratic
    Palestinian State

Phase 1 Highlights Completion Date May 2003
  • Palestinian Authority accepts Israels right to
  • Palestinian Authority dismantles terrorist
    capabilities and infrastructure. Gains control
    over security
  • Ends incitement against Israel
  • Drafts a Constitution and holds free and fair
  • Implements humanitarian recommendations including
    access to relief organizations
  • Israel confirms commitment to a free and viable
    Palestinian State
  • Israel calls a halt to the building of Jewish
    settlements and dismantles all illegal
    settlements built since March 2001
  • Israel withdraws from zones reoccupied since
    September 28 2000
  • Upholds trust by not deporting or destroying
    Palestinian property
  • Implements humanitarian recommendations

Phase 2 Highlights Completion Date December 2003
  • Arab states restore pre-intifada links with
  • Palestinian constitution is finalized and
  • An empowered reform cabinet is established
  • Issues such as water resource, refugees, economic
    development discussed multilaterally
  • Israel moves to ensure territorial contiguity for
  • Issues such as water resource, refugees, economic
    development discussed multilaterally

Phase 3 Highlights Completion Date 2005
  • Stabilization of Palestinian institutions
  • Sustained Palestinian security performance
  • Resolution of the status of Jerusalem
  • Realistic resolution of Palestinian refugee
  • Resolution of Israels settler community issue
    (200,000 in West Bank and Gaza)

Current Events Last Weekend
  • Gaza erupts in street fighting between Hamas and
  • 22 dead in fighting since last Thursday
  • Has broken down talks of forming a Palestinian
    national unity government necessary to qualify
    for foreign funding
  • Saudis have called fighting a disgrace and
    invited both Palestinian groups to Mecca for talks