What caused the first Arab-Israeli War?
All throughout the early decades of the 20th century there had been tension between rival Jews and Arabs as they both believed the land of Palestine belonged to them. But on 14th May 1948 Ben Gurion announced the newly formed state of Israel and that is the main reason to what was the cause of the ‘War on Independence’.
After the First World War Britain was given mandatory powers over Palestine as the countries of the Western World believed the Arabs could not have looked after Palestine themselves but the League of Nations put lots of terms on the mandate that Britain had to follow to try and keep both the Jews and the Arabs content. Two of those rules being: To let Jewish immigrants into Palestine and to protect the rights of the local Arabs. So small numbers of Jews were wandering in to their ‘rightful homeland’ without being really noticed but during the 1930s the figures increased enormously as the rise of Hitler in Germany got ever stronger, the Jews knew they could be in danger so they looked for safety in Palestine. In 1938 alone 60,000 East European Jews had made their way into the ‘Land of Milk and Honey’. By now the Arabs were getting angry at the huge rise in Jewish immigrants so in order to keep things clam between the rivals, in 1939 Britain laid down a quota of 77,000 Jewish immigrants over the next five years. The west did not realise what was happening to the Jews throughout the Second World War until it was over and they were shocked by the pictures they had seen of the Jews that Britain had turned away in Palestine that were now dead in concentration camps in and around Eastern Europe. The Jews desperately needed a homeland so they could be safe from further prosecution from the communist Red Army but also somewhere they could settle down and revive anything they had left of a family and try to make something on their lives, this put Britain in another awkward position. Both sides were...
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