The creation of Israel was a key period in time which sparked much conflict throughout the middle east, since the creation tension between the Israel Jews and Palestinian Arabs have risen. Conflict throughout the middle east has become a prominent issue that has been discussed throughout modern society and has led to controversies throughout the world. The creation of Israel in 1948 caused tension to grow throughout Palestine due conflicting religious beliefs as well as the broader conflict over land. The creation was ultimately due to brutal anti-Semitism throughout WWII and British colonialism that was urged by a sense of idealism and historic justice. The rationale behind the creation is further revealed due to the examination of the historical events that occurred during the 1940’s.
To begin with, the creation of Israel was widely due to the influence of Zionism, a theory founded by Theodore Herzl, an Austro-Hungarian political journalist (reference). It was the belief that the only way Jewish people could be free from anti-Semitism was through a Jewish Homeland in Palestine (reference. At the first Zionist congress, Herzl declared in 1897 that the aim of Zionism was to establish a “national home for the Jewish people secured by public law”. Herzl’s view on the creation of a Jewish Home-Land represents the belief that the Zionism wished to create a lawful state rather than taking one by pure force. 1948 brought the creation of Israel, the representative David Ben-Gurion, the first prime minister of Israel read the proclamation of Israel’s establishment, the photograph (source 1) depicts an image of Herzl above the proclamation reassuring the idea that the Zionist movement was prominent in the creation of Israel due to the founder of Zionism being present at the establishment of Israel (reference. In the contrary, Herzl believed in a law-full state, however, Zionist politicians acknowledged the idea of an Arab state, although they rejected the concept of a Palestinian nation, this was ultimately due to the certainty that the Arab residents of Palestine were a compromising minute faction of the land. (reference Ben-Gurion acknowledged the fundamental differences between Arab and Jews and recognises that an Arab would not support a Jewish homeland and therefore would fight to prevent its establishment, this subscribes Ben-Gurion and other Zionist politicians to the belief that the Arab would reject Zionism and take many measures of actions to prevent it.
In addition, British Colonialism created much conflict throughout Palestine when Israel was being created. The British were entrusted by the League of Nations (an intergovernmental organisation) to secure the developments of the political, social and economic institutions for the inhabitants of Palestine, namely the Arab population. Having secured The Mandate for Palestine the British then incorporated the Balfour Declaration, the declaration incorporated the idea of the establishment of a national home for Jewish People in Palestine, it also outlined the need to uphold civil and religious rights to the Palestinian Arab population (reference). D.Z Gillon, suggests that the idea that the British were in some way “…moved by a sense of idealism and historic justice…” for Zionism is based on statements made by British officials after the establishment of the declaration (Gillon 1969 p131). The Balfour declaration gave official recognition to the Zionist movement and the Jewish rights throughout Palestine. However, the British failed to specify who the inhabitants of the new land were and more importantly they also failed to acknowledge an independent national identity for the Palestinian (reference). Therefore, with lack of authorisation and consultation with the inhabitants of the land as well as not upholding the Balfour declaration within the mandate, allows for similar resemblance that is often common within colonial settlements as it disregarded the opinions of the inhabitants of the land.
While Zionism and British colonialism was a cause of conflict during the creation of Israel, the major conflicts throughout Israel have been narrowed down to religious and land controversy. Through difference in religious beliefs the first prime-minister of Israel, David Ben-Gurion, believed in relation to the transfer proposal made by the Peel Commission that the only way to succeed in creating a Jewish homeland in Palestine was to “expel the Arabs and take their places…” (reference) furthermore, the disregard for the Arab population sheds light on the mindset that political Zionists had towards the Palestinian Arabs. They concluded that Palestine was the home for a Jewish state regardless of the inhabitants, it was believed that they could “drive out” the “penniless population” like “the rocks of Judea” in order to secure the complete possession of the land (reference). This disregard for the inhabitants of the land demonstrates the clear conflicting beliefs that the two groups have towards each other.
Moreover, while religious conflicts is often seen as the main cause of tension throughout Palestine it can be said that land had much more of an impact on the Jewish and Arab population. The conflict was based upon the land shares the British had specified for each group, however, the British made multiple promises to the groups in the midst of the diplomatic negotiations regarding the rights over Palestine (reference). The Arabs, French and Zionists entered into a negotiation with Britain to determine who would receive the rights to rule the region. The negotiation period ended in 1920 however the chain of events that occurred towards the mandate is for more complex (reference). When the Jewish population had began to come to the land that the Palestinian Arab population believed was theirs made the Arab population believe they were under serious threat, this increased their feeling of being increasingly dispossessed (reference). This became the reason for a serious of riots that began in 1921 and occurred until 1929, the Arab population attacked Jewish neighbourhoods. Observers found that it became two groups competing for the same land and population dominance (reference). Asher Ginzberg, also known as Ahad Ha’am was a distinguished cultural Zionist. Ginzberg called attention to the growing tension between the Jewish and Arab population and believed that the relationship would be difficult and enduring (reference). The conflict grew due to Zionist politicians believing that the Arab residents of Palestine were a compromising faction of the land and lacked a sense of separate identity, this ultimately led to an acceptance of an Arab nation however they rejected the idea of a Palestinian nation.
In summary, the creation of Israel caused much conflict throughout the region due to anti-Semitism that occurred during WWII as well as the disregard for the inhabitants that occurred due to British Colonialism. As well as conflicting religious beliefs and the broader conflict over land.