The conflict between the Palestinians and the Israelis erupted afterthe partition made by Great Britain on November 29, 1947. Immediatelyafter the decision to make Israel a separate, independent state, therewere massive attacks on both sides. Upon reading the first set ofarticles, I felt that the Palestine’s unnecessarily attacked the Jewsand that they deserved the land being given to them. But the first setof articles I read were incredibly biased toward the Jewish perspectiveand, I think that because of this, I presented a distorted view of thesituation. Now that I have read the second packet, I understand thatmany of the Arabs must have felt helpless about the situation, and evenstartled by the numerous attacks and massacres by the Israelis.
I now believe that the reason that the fighting started was becauseboth sides felt that they had an obligation to uphold their religiousbeliefs and, also, justification to do what they did. Both the Arabsand the Jews felt that it was their sacred duty to keep or regain theirland. The Arabs thought of the partition as an automatic declaration ofwar against them. Therefore, they thought that they had tocounter-attack the Jews in order to keep their land.
One of the biggest massacres that the Jews waged on the Arabs wasthe attack on Deir Yassin on April 9, 1948, when 250 men, women, andchildren where killed. The first set of articles that we read did notmention anything about the ruthlessness of this massacre. Since thearticles were biased toward the Jews, I do not think that they wantedthe reader to know what really happened. In the first set of articles,they never really gave a set explanation of why so many Arabs fled theirhomes so quickly. If the Jews were as inadequately equipped as theyclaimed to be, I do not think that as many Arabs would have emigrated soreadily. On the other hand, the second set of articles was biasedtoward the Arabs, so they might have exaggerated the facts a littlebit. According to the Arabs, it was the most barbaric and “calculatedmassacre” yet. It caused many of the Arabs to flee their homes interror; which is exactly what the Jews wanted. The Jews made themselvesout to be the “helpless ones,” but I believe that they were the mostruthless, and that is why many of the Arabs fled instead of fighting fortheir country. The worst part about the massacre was that it wasplanned and carried out by former Israeli Prime Minister, MenachemBegin. After committing such a terrible deed, he was allowed to reignover Israel for years after that.
The massacre at Deir Yassin terrified the Arabs of Palestine. Part ofthe reason that so many Arabs fled was due to the announcement madeabout the massacre by Dr. Hussein Khalidi, Secretary General of the Arabhigh committee. He announced the massacre in such a frantic way, thatall the Arabs in range of Jewish attacks panicked and were instigated toleave their homes. It was the combination of the Deir Yassin massacreitself, and all the hype, which caused many Arabs to flee their homes interror.
After summarizing both packets, I still cannot clearly say who wasmore at fault in this situation. The Arabs were simply defending theland that had belonged to them for so many years. And the Jews werefighting for that same land because it was given to them by a partitionthat remained unrecognized by the Arabs. Both sides felt that they wereright about the situation, and, therefore, massive fighting broke out.
The fighting sparked as a result of the partition so I think that theBritish are largely to blame for the fighting. The United Nationsshould have thought about the results of such a partition resolution.
They never took into account that, obviously, the Jews would want toregain their land immediately. The lesson to be learned from all ofthis is that even though something sounds good on paper, it should bewell thought out before actually being put into actionHistory