The New Fault Line Essay

2234 words - 9 pages

Religion and religious organizations assert a most important impact on international conflicts. To date, religious, ethnic and nationalist conflicts remain ignored in the study of international relations and peace. The end of The Cold War brought an escalation of nationalist violence and many expected an additional escalation of religious conflicts. Despite the attention given to the religious element of conflicts, it exists as an under-inquired subject. No critical study of the impact of religious organizations on conflict behavior or comparative research of peace-making and peace-building efforts of different religious organizations can document the facts we know in our hearts and should ...view middle of the document...

Many crises arose as their neighbors sought to erase their country.

Historically, the lands currently encompassing Israel and the Palestinian territories survived countless conquering and re-conquering. Details of the ancient Israelite states suffer from some ambiguity; yet derive for from the first books of the Bible and classical history. A brief historical overview provides the best approach to better understand and secure objectivity in our considerations of the conflict in the region. We begin during the Biblical Era; In 1250 BCE, the Israelites began to conquer and settle the land of Canaan on the eastern Mediterranean coast. Then from 961-922 BCE, during the reign of King Solomon, construction of the Temple Jerusalem completed and inevitably, Solomon’s reign concluded with the division of the land into two kingdoms. The Babylonians conquered the Southern Kingdom of Judah in 586 BCE, and drove the Jews into exile destroying Solomon’s temple. Over the next seventy or so years, Jews hesitantly returned and gradually rebuilt the temple.

The Classical period followed as Alexander the Great brought the region under Greek rule by 333 BCE. In 165 BCE a revolt in Judea left in its wake the e last independent Jewish state of the ancient era, ultimately incorporating the Jewish state (Judea) into the Roman Province of Palestine. By 70 CE, Emperor Titus quelled a revolt against the Roman regime and simultaneously destroyed the second temple. This point in time marks the beginning of the Jewish Diaspora (depression). Roman Emperor Hadrian initially allowed Jews to return to Jerusalem, but a revolt in 133CE, resulted in complete destruction of the city and its inhabitants captured, banished or sold into slavery. In 638 CE, Arab Muslims terminated Byzantine rule (successors to Roman). Omar, the second caliph of Islam, erected a mosque (now al-Aqsa Mosque in Jerusalem). Excluding the period of the Crusades (1099-1187CE), Muslim rule maintained the region until the fall of the Ottoman Empire in the early twentieth century.

Since World War I religious volatility in the territory fills the Israeli and Palestinian conflict with more and more violent every day. As Imperial nations such as Britain and The United States granted Independence to most of the now divided states of the Ottoman Empire, except for that approximately ninety percent Arab, but The Zionist movement in Palestine led to massive Jewish movement into the state (thinkquest).

The First Zionist Congress met in Basle, Switzerland, in 1897. The movement influenced by Theordor Herzl’s 1896 book Der Jednstaat (The Jewish State) sought Jews to have their own homeland as a response to European anti-Semitism. Now, the Congress issued the Basle Programme establishing a home for the Jewish people in Palestine, secured by public law, and set up the World Zionist Organization to accomplish the mission. Some Zionists inhabited the area pre 1897, and by 1903, numbered nearly 25,000 primarily...

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