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Israel Palestine Conflict Term Paper

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Updated: Dec 3rd, 2019


The world history is characterized by various conflicts which are caused by various issues of social, political or either economic origin. The conflict between Israel and Palestine is a major one especially due to the fact that it has been in existence for a long time. It is complicated as it emanates from many factors such as control of Jerusalem, border disputes, security, freedom of movement of Palestinians, water rights and settlement of Israel, to name just a few.

The conflict is an issue of international concern due to the fact that it has resulted to a lot of violence. In consequential, various actions have been taken especially against the parties concerned but little has been realized from the same. The problem became worse after the Oslo peace records collapsed in September 2002. There may have been many factors that may have led to the failure of Oslo, but most studies illustrate that culture played a great role in the same.

This is due to the fact that it influences the preferences and the strategies of various political leaders, determines domestic politics as well as affects the perception, behavior and intentions of the parties involved (Finkelstein pp. 127). The conflict is wide and multifaceted and therefore, this paper shall discuss more about the problem, its history, causes, as well as various measures that have been taken to curb the problem. In addition, the paper shall also cite some viable solutions to the problem.

History of the Palestine Israeli conflict

As highlighted in the introductory part, the conflict has been in existence for a long time. Moreover, it has been taking place in different phases and each phase has been characterized by different events. For instance, towards the end of the nineteenth century up to 1917, the main conflict that existed was caused by Arabs who were in the Ottoman Empire.

On the same note, it is important to mention that most of conflicts and dispute by then had not reached a national level as they were religiously influenced. From the early twentieth century to the mid twentieth century, the region which was known as Palestine was being ruled by the British. During that particular time, the conflict which was known as Jewish Arab conflict resulted from the dispute of the land of Palestine. Therefore, the conflict was mainly a land issue by then (Finkelstein pp. 170).

The next phase of the conflict ranged from the year 1948 to the year 1967-a phase that was marked by the time the state of Israel was declared and the time the six days war took place.

By then, the region was divided in to three political regions; West Bank under the control of Jordan, Gaza Strip under the Egyptian rule and lastly the State of Israel. From the year 1967 to the year 1993, both Israel and Palestine was being ruled by the state of Israel.

However, afterwards, State of Israel coexisted together with Palestinian Authority. The period between the beginning of the 2nd Intifada and the year 2005 was marked by the arresting operations conducted by Israel in West Bank. From the year 2005, Israel withdrew from Gaza Strip and as a result, the Hams took control over the region after wining the election.

Currently, both parties believe that the other party is not interested in ending the conflict but on going on with the conflict. The issue of Jerusalem continues to be disputed because Palestine claims part of the city while Israel believes that the city should not be subdivided.

Since Palestine has been violent against Israel, it is considered as a terrorist not by Israel but also by other states like United States. Consequently, for security purposes Israel has allowed other nations to come to its rescue. Palestine has been violent not only in Israel but also against other countries.

For example, Europeans and Americans have been victims of the Palestinian military attacks. Therefore, there are many issues that characterized the conflict and most of the major causes are political in nature. Having gotten an over view of the history of the conflict, it is important to look at the major causes of the conflict. However, before then, it is important to mention that conflict has been marked revolts, disputes, wars, and uprisings to name just a few (Harms and Ferry pp. 100).

Some Underlying causes of the Palestine- Israeli Conflict

Although there are many causes of the conflict culture has played a great role and it can be considered as the underlying factor. Studies indicate the presumed origin of each country is also an important contributory factor to the conflict. For example, Palestinians suppose that Israel came about due to crimes which were committed by Hitler. Therefore, they believe that they are not supposed to shoulder the responsibility that was as a result of the Western colonial era.

Additionally, Palestinians view themselves as victims of the Nkaba which took part in the year 1948 and 1949 and they have continued to harbor bitterness especially due to the loss that was incurred during that particular period. Palestine continues to hold Israel responsible for the loss and have much trouble with the stand of Israel of not allowing the refugee from Palestine to return back to their homeland (Congressional Quarterly, inc pp. 240).

Religion, which is part of culture, has a vital role to play not only as the source of the conflict but also an obstacle to various negotiation processes. Nonetheless, the region has got only there religions which include Christianity, Judaism, and Islam. Since Jerusalem city is significant to the three religions, conflict arises since both countries seek to retain Jerusalem for religious purposes. Palestine has been claiming all the parts of Jerusalem that were not initially part of Israel before 1967.

United States proposed a plan which was aimed at resolving the Jerusalem conflict in the year 2000 and 2001. The plan had proposed that the Jewish parts of the city were to be retained by Israel while the Arab parts were to be retained by Palestine. Even if both countries had accepted the proposal, the summit failed and the conflict was not resolved (Burge pp. 120).

Ethnicity in reference to Palestine and Israel contributes to the conflict greatly and hinders some attempts aimed at resolving the same conflict. Israel consists mainly of Jews while Palestinians consist mainly of Arabs and the two ethnic groups have got different political views and principles.

For example, Palestinians believe that they have suffered greatly from Israel violent attacks and continue to be victims up to date. On the other hand, study of the history illustrates that Arabs from Palestine have been conducting various violent attacks not only in Israel but also in other places especially after the establishment of Oslo records. Palestinians believe that they only get involved in wars as a result of Israeli’s aggression (Lerner pp. 128).

Steps that have been taken to resolve the Conflict

Given that there are many initiatives that have been taken; the paper shall only discuss the major ones. To begin with, the popularly known OSLO records took place in the year 1993. It was instituted by both Palestinian and Israel leaders. Arafat recognized that Israel had the right to exist and therefore, to bring about peace, the country was supposed to stop controlling some of the Palestine territories. However, the two parties failed to reach an agreement and did not achieve their initial objective.

Camp David Summit is yet another proposal that was convened by the United States president by the name Bill Clinton. Although the offer of the president was meant to favor both states, it was rejected and even after that, Arafat did not come up with any other proposal. Although United States was pushing for a proposal to end the conflict, the proposal which was developed was not appreciated by the members concerned.

The Road Map for Peace is yet another initiative by Russia, United States and United Nations but was not successful. Finally, there is the Peace Initiative which was established in the year 2002. It proposed solutions to the conflict and has been both supported and criticized by the concerned leaders (Congressional Quarterly, inc pp. 120).

Conclusion and Recomendations

Study has indicated that despite the fact that the conflict is an international concern, it might persist unless appropriate solutions are sought. It is not possible to underestimate the contribution of various programs and summits that have been established.

Nevertheless, it is important to take into consideration the cultural contribution to the conflict since various studies have demonstrated that ethos contributes greatly to the same. Each party has got its own society beliefs that are a major hindrance to resolving the conflict. Any peace mission should be aimed at changing the beliefs of every society especially concerning the goals of the conflict.

Therefore, cultural beliefs ought to be changed to focus mainly on peace building. Lastly, it is important to create a change that will allow for establishment of trust, respect as well as sensitivity of each party’s needs. Such a step is very vital as it can give room for negotiation which can eventually lead to reconciliation.

Works Cited

Burge, Gary M. Whose land? whose promise?: what Christians are not being told about Israel and the Palestinians . Cleveland : 2003, Pilgrim Press. Print.

Congressional Quarterly, inc. The Middle East. Washington: CQ Press, 2007. Print.

Finkelstein, Norman G. Image and reality of the Israel-Palestine conflict. New York : Verso , 2003. Print.

Harms, Gregory and Todd M. Ferry. The Palestine-Israel conflict: a basic introduction. London : Pluto Press , 2008. Print.

Lerner, Michael. Healing Israel/Palestine: a path to peace and reconciliation. Berkeley: North Atlantic Books, 2003. Print.

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