The History of the Middle East

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The Middle East: Israel and the Palestinians. How old is this conflict?

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The modern conflict I believe you're referring to essentially began in 1948, when Israel was formed as a nation by the UN and it formally declared independence.  It was immediately attacked by five nations, and in the ensuing war Israel won, and expanded its border to include most of what had been called Palestine.

Some Palestinians chose to leave and others were forced to leave, and most of them became refugees. With no homeland and feeling they had been cheated out of theirs, the struggle began as Palestinians used both violence and public pressure to try and reclaim the land of Palestine. Israel responded sometimes with force and other times with US help in the United Nations to defend its independence as Israel.

So the modern conflict has been going on now for almost 62 years.

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I guess you could say that it is as old as the Bible, but I think that it only really got going since World War II.  It had been brewing, but I think that the creation of Israel in 1948 is what really got it going.

Since around the time of WWI, there had been a fairly strong Zionist movement going in the British Mandate of Palestine.  But after the Holocaust, the US and the Europeans felt that Jews needed a homeland.  So they set up the country of Israel.  This displaced a lot of Arabs who had been living on that land.  Ever since then, there has been serious conflict between the Palestinians and the Israelis over who should control what land in what is now Israel and the Occupied Territories.

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