For decades, the Palestinians have been fighting for an independent state. It has been discussed and debated over and over for political and social religious rights. There have been numerous attempts to come to a compromise by the United Nations (UN) and International Community for the two states solution. Yet still after over fifty years of war, the basic conflict still remains unchanged. The major conflict between the Palestinian and Israelis remains to be a conflict over religion and land. Who does the land belong to? The Palestinians were first forced out of their land in 1948 and shortly after they were taken over by the Israeli military; an activity the United Nation and the almost the rest of the world criticizes. Unfortunately, Israel is supported by the United States. However, one thing has changed, Palestine is fighting back. Well the main argument of the Palestinians is that the law is bias/racist and that anyone should be allowed to return to Israel, whether he is a Jew or Arab. (ElBaradei)
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The roots of the conflict started after World War 1, when Palestine was handed over to the British government after the reign of the Turkish Empire. As a result, the government of Britain created the Balfour Declaration in 1917, which states: “That nothing shall be done which may prejudice the civil and religious rights of existing non-Jewish communities in Palestine, or the rights and political status enjoyed by Jews in any other country.” The main intended idea of this declaration was to create an independent Palestine state (Balfour Declaration).
In 1967, one of the most critical wars had transpired. It was called “The Six Day War.” Israel had said they were attacked by Arab countries. On the other hand, Zionist dreams were to make a superior territory for them. Ezer Weizman, Israel’s 7th president stated that there was not treat of destruction but that the attacks on Egypt, Jordan and Syria was never the less justify so that Israel could exist. Israel had gone several attacks on Syria, Iraq, Egypt and Jordan. They occupied the Golan Heights, the Sinai Peninsula, West Bank and Gaza Strip together with Jerusalem all in six days. (Browne)
In 1948, Israel declared they’re independence causing a war to break out between causing a war to break out between the Israelis and the Palestinians. Thus, 476 villages were destroyed and over eight hundred thousand Muslim and Christian Palestinians were forced to get out of their homes and become refugees. After the “odds” were being fled from their homes, the Jewish people had moved in. Ehud Barak, one of Israel’s presidencies, stated: “We cannot allow even one refugee back on the basis of the “right of return” … and we cannot accept historical responsibility for the creation of the problem.” (Avnery)
Israelis were trying to decrease the population of the Palestinian odds by not allowing any Palestinian who left the country during 1948 and 1967 conflicts to return back. If an individual Palestinian killed an Israeli, their whole family will be punished by having their home demolished. However, if an Israeli kills a Palestinian they get sentenced a short time in jail. (Sitta )
Israel has constructed many illegal settlements and military bases within the West Bank and Gaza; as well as allowing thousands of Jewish settlers to move there. This disobeys the Forth Geneva convention by allowing military bases into populated areas. The international Community has decline to Israel the occupation in the West Bank and Gaza, but not much effort has being made to hold this international law into place. Through out the years the Israel has taken a majority of land from the Palestine. The graph on the left shows the amount of land being taken by the Israelis from 1946 to 2005.
Over 300 thousand Israelis have settled in the 100 settlements in the West Bank. These settlements have abide with the International Community since the 1970s, and lately with the help of loopholes and violent acts, it has been considered that the Israeli settlements may be a key issue in the conflict. Numerous different talks have been done along the years. (Refugee)
In 2003, “Road Map” for peace was made order to solve the Israeli-Palestinian issue by the International communities. Previous U.S President G.W Bush called for two independent states living side by side in peace. The project was outlined into 3 phases. Phases 1 was to end before May 2003, its goals was to end the violence between both parties and to put a freeze on the settlement development. Phase 2 was to rebuild the Palestinian economy, basic needs for life and control illegal maintenance of arms with the help of the International Communities. In phase 3 a second International conference was to happen to talk about the peace talk and the fate of Jerusalem. (U.S.A)
Both parties accepted to follow the “Road Map” to peace plan. However, the problem was not resolve, it was all to the implementation of the law for the conflict to be resolved. A month later, Palestinians proceeded in chains of terrorist against Israelis. Multiple bodies of Israel citizens were found dead during these attacks. The terrorist attacks were lead by the Hamas leader Abdel Aziz al-Rantissi. The Palestinian suicide bomber killed 17 passengers in Israeli bus.(Road)
The Hamas is an Islamic Palestinian organization that rules the Gaza strip. It was established as a Muslim Brotherhood but later on was classified as a terrorist organization after numerous suicide attacks against Israel, and the US. (May)
In July 2004, President George W. Bush declared that the plans for a new Palestinian state were unlikely to be completed by December 2005 because of the recent terroritst attacks made by the Hamas. Around November, the tragic death of Yasser Arafat brought a major change into the Israeli Government. His power was spread out among his executives. Israeli Prime Minister of Palestine was later on elected and stated that the death could change the timelines and dates arranged fir the Palestinians’ plans for peace. In 2005, the plans from the reformation of Gaza strip and the retreat of the Israelis came into action. However, the Hamas continued with their acts of terrorism. Nearly all the settlements were to be removed and destroyed. In June 2006, Hamas accepted the removal of the 1967 borders and agreed to the construction of a new Palestine state and a separate Israeli state. In 2008, The Hamas leader, Khaled Meshal and US jimmy cater had come with a long term truce between Israel and Palestine by giving the “right to return” to all Palestinian refugees and that the 1967 borders be reestablished. Nonetheless, the Israel refused the truce for peace and numerous war outbreaks struck through out the country. (Isseroff)
In January 2009, Benjamin Netanyahu, the Israel Prime Minister, told England Prime Minister, Tony Blair, he would allow the settlements to grow in the West Bank but not building new ones. This defied the agreement of the Road Map plan. Hillary Clinton later on declared the demolition of 80 Palestinian homes in East Jerusalem that Israel claim they were build illegally. Benjamin Netanyahu was fueling the fire in the International Communities.
Nevertheless, in June 2009 Netanyahu approved to follow the Road Map. Yet, he rejects the settlement freeze which was one of the main Israeli requirements in order to continue the Road Map. He also declared that an increase in the settlements will give settlers better living conditions rather then moving them to Israeli occupied territory. In the same month, he announced the building of 300 new houses in the West Bank. His project differed with the Road Map and created another dilemma. (Mizrahi)
In November 2009, a ten month settlement freeze was announced that excluded buildings in construction. Recently, Netanyahu made clear that the settlement freeze would not go beyond September 26th and he will continue to refuse the freezing of settlements as a main obligation of the Road Map. Netanyahu “vowed to ensure” that the Palestinian will continue their vow to the Road Map and that no other acts of terrorism will be made. Presently the peace negotiations are still on going. (Mitnick)
The best resolution to this issue relates back to the current international community resolution to divide the country into two states. Nevertheless, divided cities, of big importance, tend to not have a good future. The same situation also happened to the divided Berlin. Jerusalem will hopefully maintain its integrity. The whole issue here is that Israel is building settlements on Palestine land and is refusing any Palestinian refugee or citizen to return to Israel. Although peace may be closer now than it has been in a long time, another big issue still lies on who gets Jerusalem, Gaza and West bank? These are Israel’s main concerns as they discuss and put an end to the fighting. I truthfully doubt that Israeli’s will ever allow them a separate state. Israel says the will cease building new settlements in occupied territories yet they still force Palestinian locals out with tanks and bulldozers. No wonder Palestine fight back with suicide bombs and terrorist attacks. With all these obstacles involving back and forth suicide bombing from all groups the Palestine-Israel will never be resolved. Cultural understanding would have not prevented this particular conflict because the fight is mostly over land. A possible resolution is that Israel should give back all the land they have acquired over this conflict period to the respective countries. In addition to, giving Palestine their own state. This could possibly end a large part of the conflict. More and more Jewish immigrants are coming into Israel, requiring more occupied territory to be developed. With more people moving to Israel it has forced them to expand because of the water and other resources that are essential to life. This also causes fighting between both groups. Benjamin Netanyahu is not being considerate either. He is stubborn and greedy. Netanyahu focuses more on the Israelis; he shows no sympathy for the Palestinian refuges. He is interested in is the money that is coming from the settlements and nothing else. The Quran says: “And the Jews will not be pleased with thee, nor will the Christians, till thou follow their creed.” This whole conflict is based on greed for more land and land equals power.
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