Palestine History

The history of Palestine up to the UN partition resolution

The historical region of Palestine – the name goes back to the Philistine people – is located on the south-eastern coast of the Mediterranean Sea and describes an area in which the State of Israel, the Gaza Strip, the West Bank, parts of Syria, Lebanon and Jordan (the East Bank) is located. The borders, names and also the population changed in the course of time. From early on, Palestine was a transit country and thus a place of cultural encounter and exchange. Most of the time it was a province within a larger empire.

Traces of settlement can be found on the soil of Palestine as early as the Paleolithic Age. Approx. 9,000 BC It came to the foundation of Jericho. In the Bronze Age, the Canaanites populated the land. Towards the end of the 13th century BC For the first time there is talk of “Hebrews”. In the course of the 12th century the Philistines from the Aegean region appeared, members of the so-called sea peoples.

After that, the country was ruled by the Israelites, the Assyrians, the Babylonians, the Persians, Alexander the Great, the Ptolemies, the Seleucids, the Romans, the Byzantines, the various dynasties of the Muslim Arabs, the Crusaders and finally, until 1917, the Ottomans. After that, the British took over rule until May 14, 1948.

In the McMahon-Hussein correspondence from July 1915 to March 1916, the British had vaguely promised the Sherif of Hejah and Mecca, Hussein Ibn Ali, that he would found a great Arab empire for his military service against the Ottomans. In the so-called Sykes-Picot Agreement of May 1916, however, they agreed with the French on the division of the region, and in particular of the Ottoman Empire, into a British and a French sphere of influence. In addition, British Foreign Minister Arthur James Balfour wrote on November 2, 1917, assuring Lord Rothschild, a prominent British Zionist, of British support for the establishment of a Jewish home in Palestine (the so-called Balfour Declaration), which the Zionist movement has been actively campaigning for since the First Zionist Congress in Basel in 1897.

According to ALLUNITCONVERTERS, this declaration gained even more weight after British troops had conquered Palestine in 1917/1918 and the victorious powers of World War I at the San Remo Conference in April 1920 entrusted Great Britain with the administration of Palestine, which at that time also included Transjordan. In March 1921, at a conference in Cairo chaired by the then Colonial Minister Winston Churchill, it was decided that Transjordan (the areas east of the Jordan) should be separated and that Abdallah, the second son of the Sherif Hussein Ibn Ali of Mecca, should receive the emirate over Transjordan. The British mandate over Palestine was confirmed by the League of Nations in July 1922 and the Balfour Declaration was included in the Mandate Treaty. It officially came into force on September 29, 1923.

In the course of the British mandate over Palestine, the Jewish-Palestinian disputes over domination in the country intensified, also because of the increasing Jewish-Zionist immigration from fascist Europe. Having lost control of the conflict, the British, under the pressure of events, announced that they would return the mandate for Palestine to the United Nations.

From the Second Intifada to the 2006 elections

After the summit at Camp David in July 2000, both sides blamed the other for the failure. Then began on September 28, 2000 with the visit of the then Israeli opposition leader Ariel Sharon to the Temple Mount, which is sacred to the Muslim Palestinians, the Second Intifada.

In March 2002 “Operation Schutzschild” started, a large-scale military operation by the Israeli army after a series of Palestinian suicide bombings. Palestinian infrastructure, private and public property in the occupied Palestinian territories has been widespread damage and destruction, and leading Palestinians and hundreds more have been arrested.

After the death of Yasser Arafat in November 2004, Mahmoud Abbas was elected President of the Palestinian Authority in January 2005.

National symbols

Olive trees are a central symbol of Palestinian existence. The olive tree, which can have a very long life, symbolizes the bond with the land. The fruits – including the oil pressed from them – have been a staple food in the region for thousands of years. The oil is also processed into a famous soap.

For centuries, the kuffiye (or also called hatta), a square, often black and white or red and white cloth, has been worn by Arab men – especially in the country – as protection against sun and dust. With the great Arab uprising against the British and Zionists from 1936 to 1939, which was mainly worn by the peasants, their costume became a symbol of armed resistance. The Palestinian resistance fighters continued this tradition in the 1960’s. As the PLO chairman, it was natural for Yasser Arafat to wear the kuffiye, and it became his trademark. Lots of fedayinthen no longer wore the scarf as headgear, but wrapped it around their necks and wrapped around their heads for masking. Outside of Palestine, too, it became a sign of solidarity with the Palestinian people.

Palestine History