The Aware Man Series revolves around major events of the past century that shaped the world we live in today. No heavy jargons. Just the story of what happened, how it happened - for folks like us.
The Israel - Palestine issue is probably the most controversial conflict the past century has witnessed. In laymen terms, it’s a conflict between two self determination movements - the Zionist Jews ( Israelis ) and the Palestine Nationalist.
Israel being the one and only Jewish state in the world, with Palestine belonging to the Arabs, the entire conflict revolves around laying claim to the same piece of territory.
In an attempt to flee from the massacres of Europe, the Jews fled to the land what was then a majority of Arabs and Muslims. An intervention by the United Nations Council to distribute the lands between the two parties, the Arabs and the Jews, failed - which eventually paved the way for the wars fought in 1948 and 1967, and the subsequent turmoil that goes on till date.
The Outcome ?
The 48’ war saw 700,000 Palestinians being uprooted from their homes and families, creating a refugee crisis that exists to this day. They call it the ‘Nakba’ - Arabic for catastrophe. It remains one of the most talked about subjects in the ongoing peace negotiations.
The 67’ war saw Israel taking control over the West Bank and Gaza Strip, which were host to a major Palestinian population.
The outcome of these problems was the Two State Solution - which in theory called for Palestine as a separate state in Gaza and the West Bank, giving the remaining to Israel. The geographic fabric, however, did not make it as easy for execution.
Till date, on paper, the West Bank is controlled by the Palestinian Authority, but is actually under Israeli occupation. Similarly Gaza is controlled by Hamas, an Islamist Fundamentalist Party, but is actually under Israeli blockade.
Zionism is Israel’s national ideology that serves both as a nationality and a religion. Leaving aside the Israeli - Palestine conflict, let’s look at the dichotomy of the situation within Israel.
Albeit, Zionists are on the same page where the existence of Israel is concerned. What creates a rift is as to how the government should look like. The Zionist Leftists call for a more secular approach where they’re willing to part with land for peace. The Zionist Right, who currently dominate the political scenario, call for a more aggressive, front footed approach to the entire situation.
The current Palestinian President, Mahmoud Abbas, opposes the Israeli Government’s right wing coalition due to the same attitude. Under the leadership of Israeli Prime Minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, construction saw a massive high run. This was seen as a move to make the formation of a Palestinian state impossible.
Netanyahu supports the Two State theory on paper only due to the pressure built by the US.
The two sides basic lack of trust in each other’s willingness to make amends is the major leak in the faucet. Since the failed peach push attempt of 2014 by former US Secretary of State, John Kerry, the Palestinians have devised a pressure campaign to isolate the Israelis internationally. The intent being to corner Israel to make peace, has seen very little results.