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The Middle East Conflicts

The creation of Israel.

The Zionist movement of the late 19th century had led by 1917 to the Balfour Declaration, by which Britain promised an eventual homeland for the Jews in Palestine. This declaration increased and gave rise to the Arab-Jewish tensions.

Although the US supported the Balfour Declaration, US president Roosevelt assured the Arabs in 1945 that the US would not intervene without consulting both the Jews and the Arabs from that region. The British, who held a colonial mandate for Palestine until May 1948, opposed both the creation of a Jewish state and an Arab state in Palestine. However, Great Britain wanted to preserve good relations with the Arabs to protect its vital political and economic interests in Palestine. 

Soon after, president Harry Truman took office and appointed several experts to study the Palestinian issue. In the summer of 1946, he established a special cabinet committee who entered in negotiations with Britain. In October 1946 Truman publicly declared his support for the creation of a Jewish state. Throughout, in 1947, the UN examined the Palestinian issue and concluded with the recommendation of the partition of Palestine into a Jewish and Arab state. A month later, the UN adopted the Partition Resolution that would divide Great Britain’s former Palestinian mandate into Jewish and Arab states in 1948. Under the resolution, the area of religious significance surrounding Jerusalem would remain a “corpus separatum” under international control administrated by the United Nations. Few months after, the US ended recognizing the state of Israel. 

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