The Middle East in the 20th Century


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A History 12 lesson outlining the conflict that arose as a result of British foreign policy as it affected Zionist and Arab nationalism.

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  • See pages 405 - 409 in “Paris 1919.” Fisal, in reward for is efforts against the turks was made King of Mesopotamia (Iraq - Iraq became an independent state in the League in 1932, and Fisals grandson was killed in a coup in 1958). Fisal’s brother became king of Transjordan after the Cairo Conference of 1921, and is the only one in the family to have kept power. Ibn Saud took control of Hejaz in 1924 and eventually became king of Saudi Arabia.
  • 1905 Revolution after the failed Manchurian Campaign against Japan. (Bloody Sunday with Father Gapon).
  • Dr. Chaim Weizmann, the leading spokesman for organized Zionism in Britain.
    During their first meeting, in 1906, the Unionist leader was impressed by Weizmann's personality.
  • Sir Henry MacMahon, British High Commissioner for Egypt and the Sherif Hussein of Mecca
  • Feisal lost the Hashemite lands in Arabia to Ibn Saud in the mid 20s; Feisal’s grandson lost Iraq in a coup in 1958. Only Hussein’s great grandson remains in power in Jordan (2007).
  • Organized by the same Briton who later created the Chindits in India in WW2.
  • However, the squads were known for their ruthless efficiency and brutal methods. According to Israeli military historian Martin van Creveld their training included "... how to kill without compunction, how to interrogate prisoners by shooting every tenth man to make the rest talk; and how to deter future terrorists by pushing the heads of captured ones into pools of oil and then freeing them to tell the story”.
  • Nazi letter re the Final Solution: the world had turned its back on the Jews in the 1930s; there was huge pressure after the war to not let the same occur again - especially in the USA.
  • When facing multiple superior enemies, separate them by putting yourself in the centre and fight them one at a time.
    Nations like Syria need reliable forces like the Republican Guard to ensure the safety of the Regime at home: if those forces are lost at battle, the Regime may fall - not worth the risk.
  • Notice Nasser’s characture (hair, ‘stache, nose) Note also soldiers representing the other Arab states. We assume the sign says “Aqaba.”
  • 3 July 1976 - 4 Hercs
  • US Marines acting as UN troops
  • Remember Yitzhak Rabin was an IDF general in the photo with Min of Def Moshe Dayan in the Six Day War photo.
  • The Middle East in the 20th Century

    1. 1. The Middle East: Part One The Creation of the State of Israel and the Origins of Mid East Nationalism J. Marshall 2007
    2. 2. At a glance… PART 1 •The region - getting oriented •The origins of Zionism and Arab nationalism •The Paris 1919 mandate system •Inter-war tensions PART 2 •The four Arab-Israeli wars •Camp David and after References •Handbook pp. 164 - 172
    3. 3. Lebanon Israel 1. The Region Syria Iraq Jordan Egypt Saudi Arabia
    4. 4. ian sp Ca Black Sea Mediterranean Sea a Se Aegean Sea Sea of Galilee/Lake Tiberias Dead Sea Suez Canal Per sian d Re Gulf of Suez Gulf of Aqaba Gul f a Se
    5. 5. Leb. Syria Isr a el Mediterranean Sea or J Iraq an d ez Su na Ca l Egypt Saudi Arabia ea dS Re
    6. 6. Wyria n S Mediterranean1Sea bano Z Le el n aX V da Isr Jor Canal 3 t y Tp Eg d Re a Se 2 West Bank Yq Ira U Ar i ud Sa bia a
    7. 7. a) Example of a Provincial Question: 1. In 1922, which of the following numbered countries was confirmed by the League of Nations to be a French mandate? 1 2 3 4 Answer = (Syria) = c see teacher notes at foot of slide 3 1 4 2
    8. 8. 2. Zionist Movement • Difference between religion and culture: People of the Jewish religion are of many cultures. • History of persecution - pogroms • Ancient Israel vs. a homeland vs. a state
    9. 9. Anti-Jewish feelings were manifested in a variety of ways: • Limited rights • Discrimination in government posts ex. Dreyfus Affair, France • Scapegoating • Pogroms • Violence against person and/or property
    10. 10. • A widespread pogrom was carried out in Russia in 1905. What else occurred in Russia in that year?
    11. 11. Ancient Israel
    12. 12. Theodor Herzl (father of modern Israel) led the first Zionist Congress of the WZO. "At Basel I founded the Jewish State...Perhaps in five years, and certainly in fifty, everyone will know it.” Sept 3, 1897, Basel, Switzerland. own to d lmost ,a s right He wa e day! th Flag of the 1923 Congress
    13. 13. • Some Zionists insisted on Palestine as a homeland - others were less definite. • What if selfdetermination dislocates another group? • Madagascar was one turn-of-thecentury suggestion. But Where?
    14. 14. At their fist meeting Balfour asked Weizmann why the homeland must be Palestine: "Anything else would be idolatry. "Mr. Balfour, supposing I were to offer you Paris instead of London, would you take it?" "But Dr. Weizmann, we have London." "That is true, but we had Jerusalem when London was a marsh."
    15. 15. Arthur Balfour: 1917 Balfour Report • Chiam Weizmann lobbied and was given a written guarantee of a Jewish National Home in Palestine. • Is that a separate state or something within a mixedpopulation Palestine?
    16. 16. Churchill White Paper: 1922 Redefined British interpretation of a Jewish National Home: •Palestine will not be “as Jewish as England is English”, but rather “a center in which Jewish people as a whole may take, on grounds of religion and race, an interest and a pride.” •confirmed the right of Jewish immigration BUT stipulated that this should not exceed the economic absorptive capacity of the country = a natural limit
    17. 17. Can both groups be satisfied? Weizmann and King Feisal, 1918
    18. 18. 3. Arab Nationalism • The Arabs are tribal and cannot be seen as a homogeneous group. • Western powers have made some dubious moves. • Inter-tribal competition has hindered efforts at united action. • A longstanding history in Palestine before the dislocation of the Palestinian Arabs has caused tension with the Zionists (later, the Israelis). • The Arab League and other organizations have been created to help Arab nationalists meet their aspirations.
    19. 19. 1915-16 MacMahon Letters Britain promised independence in the Arab world if there was a revolt against the Turks. BUT: • Precise borders of a future Arab state are not agreed (Britain did wish not to prejudice the interests of her ally, France). • Palestine was not mentioned by name and its inclusion in the Arab area remains a source of some dispute amongst historians.
    20. 20. Sykes-Picot, 1916 = Brit/Fr sell-out • What would be done with the Ottoman Empire after the war? • Ru ad ssia vis wa ed s Feisal and the Arabs were guaranteed self-determination by MacMahon and others So-what: Arab mistrust of the “imperialists” is born. • Later, Feisal is given Iraq and his lazy bother is given Transjordan; the brother ended up being the most successful. EC S ET R
    21. 21. Col T. E. Lawrence 1920 before League approval
    22. 22. 4. The Mandate Years • • • • • Jewish immigration Pressure on the land Inter-group rivalry/conflict Haganah (Irgun) Jewish support of the British war effort
    23. 23. Palestine was Divided in 1922 •Transjordan included the West Bank and lands east of the River Jordan • Palestine included the small area to the West.
    24. 24. • 80% Transjordan • 20% Palestine
    25. 25. Jewish settlers posed a problem (self-determination)
    26. 26. • In another attempt to appease the Arabs, the British restricted Jewish immigration in March 1938 to 3,000 for the following 6-month period. Consequently, Jewish immigration fell from its record high of 66,000 in 1935 to a little more than 14,000 in 1938. The Arabs were not pacified by the concession and continued their attacks. By the end of the year, nearly 300 Jews had been killed and more than 600 wounded. • The Zionists persistently and naively clung to the belief that the Arabs would eventually accept their presence in Palestine, and recognize the benefits that Jewish settlement was bringing to the country. In 1934, Ben Gurion told Palestinian nationalist Musa Alami that the Zionists were bringing "a blessing to the Arabs of Palestine" and that they had no good reason to oppose Jewish settlement. • Alami replied: "I would prefer that the country remain impoverished and barren for another hundred years, until we ourselves are able to develop it on our own."
    27. 27. The Haganah “defence:” not officially recognized, but the UK cooperated.
    28. 28. Arab Revolts 1936-1938 Arab general strike refocused Arab violence towards Jews Armoured Jewish bus
    29. 29. 40 Arabs hanged De-armed the Arabs (helped Israel in ’48) 5000 Arab, 400 Jewish, 200 British deaths Wingate’s Special Night Squads: British Regulars and Haganah Volunteers where used to put down the Arab revolts (often very violently).
    30. 30. The force was highly successful in bringing attacks by Arab guerillas on the pipeline of the Iraqi Petroleum Company to a halt.
    31. 31. Irgun (ETZEL) • Violent arm or Haganah - example: bombed the King Davd Hotel in Jerusalem in 1946 killing almost 100 Britons). • Warning to ETZEL in 1947 to cool it! Why would David Ben Gurion want to rope in ETZEL?
    32. 32. Who really owned the land? • Even in 1947, most land was Arabowned. • But, the proportion of population had shifted significantly in favour of the Jews since 1922.
    33. 33. Part Two: 5. Creation of Israel • Zionist lobby - Chiam Weizmann was a successful chemist for the Allied war effort in 1914. • Western Holocaust guilt + lobbying. • Palestinian Zionist support for UK in WW2. • For UK partition as a means of relieving regional tension in Palestine.
    34. 34. “Haganah” ? aboard Exodus, 1947
    36. 36. Why did the Brits want out? • acts of violence committed by some or all of the Jewish military organizations undermined British resolve to remain in the region. • Haganah's operation of illegal immigration which became a source of considerable embarrassment to the British government. • dire post-war economic situation forced withdrawl from considerable portions of her Empire including India. • Britain's now depended on US$, which gave US leverage over Palestine. US Jewish opinion rallied to the Zionist cause: Truman, was seeking public support in both Congressional and Presidential elections -- and was therefore responsive to the Jewish lobby.
    37. 37. Weizmann and Truman, 1948 The USA was the first nation to recognize the new State of Israel.
    38. 38. 1947 - United Nations Special Committee on Palestine (UNSCOP): • April, 1947 British refer Palestine question to the U.N. • Recommended partitioning Palestine into a Jewish an Arab state (Jerusalem to be an international city). • Adopted 29th November, 1947 (Resolution 181: voted 33 to 13; 10 abstained). • In a rather unusual moment of history, the USA and the USSR supported the resolution (the Russians wanted the UK out of Palestine) whilst Britain abstained, promising only to evacuate her troops by August 1948 (the British departed three months earlier on May 14).
    39. 39. 1947 Resolution 181 Voting: 33 For 10 Abstain 13 Against
    40. 40. 1947 Resolution 181 Voting: rab eA Th er : e mb 33 For e th m re ected UT rej B tes on! S ta lu ti so Re 10 Abstain 13 Against
    41. 41. Resolution 181 The planned partition: what happened in India in 1947 after partition?
    42. 42. Israeli War of Independence First Arab-Israeli War Palestinian War 6. 1948-1949 War • After David Ben Gurion declared Israel’s creation, the Arab world reacted by invading in an effort to destroy the self-proclaimed nation. • The USSR supported Israel with arms. • Ironically, the Arabs’ desire to isolate the Jews during the Mandate years helped the latter to become more economically independent.
    43. 43. David Ben Gurion, 1948
    44. 44. Israeli Problem #1 = Depth • The Jordanian artillery could cross Israel. • You can’t withdraw into the sea!
    45. 45. Israel consolidated the territory in the partition, but still had long borders to defend
    46. 46. 7. Suez War 1956 • • • • Nasser takes control in 1952 coup Nationalizes the Canal Zone in 1956 UK/Fr make secret deal with Israel When the Europeans enter Zone the US pushes them out. • First use of UN peacekeepers = UNEF1 • Shows Israel can take the Sinai
    47. 47. Sinai Desert IDF Sherman Tank in the Sinai
    48. 48. 8. Six Day War, 1967 • Expulsion of UNEF1 • Nasser stated publicly that he would destroy Israel Israel attacks first! • The Egyptians feared losing leadership to the Syrians = posturing. • The Israelis knew they had to fight a maneuvering campaign, not a static war of attrition (Napoleon’s doctrine of fighting from the centre). • Importance of the air war. • Nassar lies to Hussein over Israeli air losses. • Syria doesn’t commit its Republican Guard in Golan
    49. 49. ? AQABA ________ kicks the Israelis out of Aqaba: Where are the Straits of Tiran?
    50. 50. Alliance: Hussein and Nasser, May 1967: months later during the 6 Day War, Nasser would deliberately mislead Jordan about Israeli air losses
    51. 51. The Israeli Foreign Secretary seeks the USA position in case of war. L. B. J.
    52. 52. • Egyptian Army T-55 tank: many were captured by the IDF and used against the Egyptians in the Yom Kippur War.
    53. 53. The Six Day War tank battles rivaled those at Kursk! The IDF with their British 1950’s Centurion Tanks (sold to Israel so Britian could afford new Centurion tanks).
    54. 54. Israeli guarding Egyptian POWs
    55. 55. Min of Defense Moshe Dayan and Gen Yitschak Rabin, in Jerusalem’s Old City Note the cool eye patch on Dayan
    56. 56. USA 6th Fleet moved east from western Med; USSR Black Sea Fleet left for Med.
    57. 57. OOPS! • USS Liberty (Int Ship) mistaken for Egyptian El Quseir
    58. 58. Friendly fire: earlier the USN had told the Israelis no US ship was within 100 miles - the day before the Israelis had bombed their own tanks. This PT boat + air attack = many USN deaths - USA officially accepts Israeli apology + 13Mil$ payment for compensation. FOG OF WAR? Many Americans didn’t buy it.
    59. 59. League of Arab States
    60. 60. Golan Heights: 1. Remember, this is where it all started: the Israelis were taking water from the Sea of Galilee to the Negev. 2. Syria was diverting the tributaries to eliminate the source. Also high ground is strategically important!
    61. 61. The ancient Nimrod Fortress attests to the region’s strategic importance.
    62. 62. View from a Syrian Golan bunker towards Israel
    63. 63. IDF in the Old City
    64. 64. • IDF Paratroopers at the Western Wall - Jerusalem is religiously significant to all regional religious groups. • • • • • Can you name them? 1 Muslim 2 Jewish 3 Christian 4. Druse
    65. 65. The Victory for Israel = Depth • Gaza • Golan • West Bank
    66. 66. 9. Yom Kippur War, 1973 • Surprise attack catches IDF unprepared. • After the first week, the IDF is able to reverse the initial Arab forces’ gains. • Stalemate after a month of fighting. • Huge political repercussions for Israeli leaders, although 1967 gains are mostly held. • Ushers in the 1974 fuel shortage - prices double!
    67. 67. 1973 IDF check point: this is no longer a UN check point as the sign says: after Yom Kippur = UNEF2
    68. 68. Federation of Arab Republics • Short-lived (1972-1977) • Egypt and Syria are in competition to see who can lead in the region. 3 1 2
    69. 69. David Dado Elazar, IDF Chief of Staff (Warned of attack) = fall guy • Agranat Commission, 1974 • Gen Eli Ziera, Chief of Intelligence - said no worries prior to attack
    70. 70. P.M. Golda Meir (with Nixon, 1969) Also resigned after Yom Kippur
    71. 71. West Bank settlements must be defended = a loss of depth. What if settlers won’t listen to the government?
    72. 72. 10. The 1970s • Terror attacks • Land for Peace
    73. 73. Munich, 1972 11 Israeli athletes + 1 German cop + terrorists
    74. 74. Entebbe, Uganda, 1976
    75. 75. 2-State Option? Land for peace?
    76. 76. 1979 Camp David: Sadat and Begin
    77. 77. 11. The 80’s
    78. 78. Anwar Sadat signs peace for land deal with the Israelis and is the first Arab leader to recognize Israel (gradual withdrawal from the Sinai)
    79. 79. US Marine Barracks, Beirut 1982: 241 dead before after Pres Bush Sr
    80. 80. Suicide bombers
    81. 81. 1. London assassination attempt by PLO = 2. reprisal by IDF in Lebanon = 3. reprisal rocket attack on Haifa apartment by PLO
    82. 82. Katyus ha Rocket
    83. 83. What is the attitude of many Arabs?
    84. 84. Madrid, 1991 = led to the second Arab nation recognizing Israel P.M. Yitzhak Rabin King Hussein
    85. 85. Madrid led to the 1993 Oslo Accords Yitzhak Rabin Yasser Arafat
    86. 86. End