What Are the Causes of the First Intifada? Essay Example
It has been proven time and again throughout the course of history that whenever a certain group of individuals are persecuted for any given amount of time, there are alway other people who want to put a stop to the kinds of actions and events that are taking place. These individuals and groups of people understand that certain measures must be taken in order to ensure one’s freedom and sustainability. These people are also aware of the fact that if no specific course of immediate action is taken, they could cease to exist due to the fact that the group of people who are persecuting will not put a stop to their violent actions no matter what. Invariably, when a certain group of people are constantly persecuted, violence erupts. This has been proven so many times throughout history, such as the great conflict between Whites and African Americans many years ago. However, the problem with this is that despite the fact that so much violence may arise from the extenuating circumstances at hand, there are always those individuals who believe that more blood is necessary. Because of this, even today, there is still discrimination in the world. In a similar manner, the first Intifada has ensured the idea that some individuals never learn from their mistakes. The first Intifada, which will be analyzed throughout this research paper, indicates the fact that there are certain things that violence cannot solve, but certainly help. In order to fully comprehend what the first Intifada is and why it is so imperative in the world today, the primary causes must first be analyzed. Through this analyzation, individuals will become cognizant of the actuality as to what was the main cause of the first Intifada. What individuals must come to terms with, however, is the fact that there is much speculation in regards to what was the exact day the first Intifada began. While some say that it was the moment Israelis directly affected a Palestinian, others suggest that the beginnings of the first Intifada is all due to the manner in which the Six Day War concluded and what it accomplished. Regardless, all of these events and contributing factors must be closely analyzed in order to fully comprehend the not-so-humble beginnings of the first Intifada. (“The First Intifada.”)
In order to place things in chronological order, it makes sense that the first causing event to be investigated is the Six Day War. The Six Day War of 1967 was first brought forth when the Egyptians decided to get rid of Israel did not go as planned. In actuality, Israel was the first to attack the Egyptians, which ended extremely bad for Egypt. What this meant for the neighboring countries is the fact that they would now be destroy. For clarification purposes, many forces, including Egypt, Syria, and Jordan were completely demolished. What this meant for Israel was a great victory over these people and also that they would now have much more territory than they previously had. Israel’s obtaining of the Holy Land only aroused more anger for many groups of people, many of them Palestinians. (Bregman)
Israel had now obtained completely control over the West Bank, Sinai Peninsula, Gaza Strip, Jerusalem, meant that the Palestinians were now extremely dissatisfied. It goes without question that frustration was prevalent in every Palestinian home after this incident because of the manner in which Israel could now practically control the Palestinians. There are many individuals who believe that the Six Day War is the primary purpose as to why the first Intifada took place. If put into perspective, the suggestion makes a lot of sense. It is not uncommon to see a group of people who are dissatisfied with their current situation to rebel against the group of people who are making them unhappy. In this case, many people believe that the first Intifada took place because the Palestinians could no longer stand Israeli’s control that was exerted since the finalization of the Six Day War. Despite the idea that it might be ignorant to ignore the many other factors that led to the first Intifada, the Six Day War should unquestionably be considered a major factor in the Intifada. The fact that it took place several years later can be easily explained by ensuring the idea that it sometimes takes a group of people more time than expected to realize that something must be done in order to put a stop once and for all to the situation that they are in. (Bregman)
Probably the most commonly suggested event that initiated the first Intifada has been known as something as simple as a car crash. It was around this time that the first riots were instigated, so it is believed that this incident is what propelled all of the future riots into violence. The major event that is being talked about is the manner in which an Israeli truck was seen by hundreds of individuals to crash into a station wagon which just so happened to be carrying Palestinian workers. This event has been said to have taken place in the district of Gaza. As many Palestinians were being spectators to the event that had just unfolded in front of their eyes, there were immediate riots against Israelis. (Berman)
Although these riots were extremely violent, the Palestinians believed it to be the right thing to do against the Israelis as a way of retaliation for having killed so many individuals. The result of this car incident was that there were four Palestinians who were killed while ten were severely injured. Clearly, the Palestinians did not even think about letting what had just happened slip by; they decided to take up arms against Israel. As many Palestinians passed by the site in which the crash took place, they were enraged by the fact that the Israelis believed that they could treat the Palestinians however they pleased and still get away with it. Of course, not wanting to seem like cowards, the Palestinians took it upon themselves to let the Israelis know exactly who they were dealing with. This was a pivotal moment in history, as a war had just begun. It has been suggested many times that every event that had happened before the first Intifada were just preliminary events that ultimately led to this event. It was on this day that the Palestinians would begin to directly fight for the freedom that they believed to deserve and would not stop at anything to gain access to becoming free individuals. (Friedman)
Another plausible incident that took place throughout the time in which all of these events were taking place was when two Birzeit University Gaza students were shot by Israeli soldiers. Despite the fact that the motives were not completely present at the time, to this day, individuals believe that has happened on December 4, 1986 is something that was written down in history as one of the primary causes as to why the first Intifada was caused. The fact of the matter at hand is that because so many Palestinian individuals were being mistreated, Palestinians found no alternative some time after that they would without a doubt have to do something about the events that had just taken place. Sure enough, something was done, though not in the most effective manner. (American Muslims for Palestine)
The fact that so many individuals had to suffer and die throughout the first Intifada just indicates the fact that many individuals were clearly not ready for such a war against the Israelis. Regardless, the Palestinians knew that they had to do something right that instance because if they did not, then they would have to be slaves to the Israelis for many years to come.
Unfortunately, as a response to the kind of actions that were being performed by the Palestinians, the Israelis began to understand that the best alternative for this matter would be violence. Sure enough, the Israelis began arresting many individuals and would even have the tendency to handcuff many youths simply because they were standing up for something that they believed in. It goes without saying that many individuals were having their rights thrown out the window. These arrested Palestinians would often be placed in harsh living conditions. For example, there was a location known as Ansar 11, where approximately 250 detained Palestinians were forced to be in only four cells. This only enraged many Palestinians even more. This was due to the idea that they knew they were worth just as much as the Israelis. This kind of mindset soon proved dangerous, however, because of the fact that more violence kept being prevalent throughout these places. (Bregman)
While some Palestinians did not know what exactly was going on, there were other Palestinians who believed that the whole incident was done as way of showing that the Israelis were not afraid of the Palestinians. What had happened was that a Jew had been killed back in Gaza a few days before. Therefore, the Palestinians grew to believe that the whole crash that had occurred was subtle message to prove the fact that the Israelis could make much more damage than the Palestinians could. The end event of all of this was more and more violence. It does not come as a surprise that so many individuals decided to take it upon themselves to injure all of the Israelis that they could. (A&E Television Networks, LLC)
The majority of the Palestinian riots were headed by Palestinian youths who believed in the cause. On December 9, Palestinians took up the streets and started the havoc. In bold messages, they started to protest through any means necessary, sometimes injuring any and all Israelis that they saw on the streets. In addition, they would burn tires in order to make it seem as if they meant what they were doing and they would not hesitate to injure the Israeli troops and police by throwing Molotov cocktails and rocks at them. As a result of all of these predicaments, the Israeli were ordered to shed no mercy on all of those partaking on these kinds of actions. Clearly, this would not end well for either party. This event has been known to have sparked all of the first Intifada. However, what many individuals fail to realize is the fact that there were many events that took place that actually led down the road of revolt and these unfortunate events. These individuals must come to understand that in order to comprehend all of what was happening at the time, the bigger picture must be analyzed in order to completely understand why certain things were done and how things turned out. (Friedman)
One of the most famous incidents that took place throughout the course of all of these events is often times referred to as the Night of the Gliders. This event took place on November 25, 1987, in which is it said that two guerrillas were able to attack Israel coming in from South Lebanon. This attack was without a doubt directed towards the Israel Defense Forces (IDF). Unfortunately for the Palestinians, one of the gliders was tracked down within minutes and Israeli forces were able to kill the glider before it was able to get close enough to produce any bodily harm on anyone. However, the same could not be said about the other glider. He was able to get into the Israel Defense Forces base and managed to kill of six Israeli soldiers. Additionally, he was able to injure eight other individuals before he was shot and acquired a fatal wound. Despite the fact that both of the individuals in this incident died off, is served as a big wake-up call for the Israelis which proved that the Palestinians were not as hopeless as they had expected.
As expected, the Palestinians saw this as a great victory because of the fact that there were now less Israelis to riot against. (Friedman)
There was a lot of controversy throughout these times and individuals had a very difficult time realizing that violence and riots would not be the answer to solve this controversy. Many individuals have suggested that the best manner through which this problem could have been solved was through easy communication. However, many others argue that such suggestions would not have worked since the Israelis were seen as very stubborn, hard-headed individuals by the Palestinians. Therefore, this was seen as a case of action versus inaction. If the former had been opted for, then the Palestinians would have done exactly what they actually did and the results would not waver. However, if the latter had been chosen and no significant actions would have been taken, the Palestinians would still find themselves in the condition that they found themselves not too long ago.
An incident that greater increased the tensions between these two groups was went an innocent student from Khan Yunis was deliberately shot and killed by Israelis soldiers. These soldiers were said to have been seen following the man from their jeep. These kinds of actions make a great point in proving the fact that things were clearly out of control. What made is worse is that even though there were more than enough of incentives as to why the first Intifada was caused, both groups (primarily the Israelis) continued to perform extremely violent acts towards each other. (Bregman)
These kids of actions only fed gasoline to the fire, clearly seen by the manner in which there were so many individuals who became more and more enraged day by day. This enragement led to individuals going off to the streets and perform actions that they would not have performed under any other kinds of circumstances. Clearly, both the Palestinians and Israelis had no intention of working together in order to reach a common agreement. For quite some time, it appeared as if both sides of the controversy only wished to destroy the other’s forces. This kind of war only waged violence and promoted no end. The reason as to why this proved to be extremely dangerous was because of the fact that neither side was seeking to negotiate and was only seeking to see the opposing members suffer. (“The First Intifada.”)
Towards the end of the terror, the Oslo Accords were brought about. For many, these were considered a treaty by which both Palestinians and Israelis would have to abide by in order to prevent any future violence and riots. Many individuals believe that the sole purpose of the Oslo Accords are due to the Israelis inability to successfully suppress the riots that were going on at the time led by the Palestinians. Despite the fact that this treaty was signed into action, many individuals still continue fighting for the same problems that were brought about by the first Intifada. It is difficult to predict if things in the Holy Land will ever be able to be at peace, but it is certainly worth believing that there will be complete peace one day. (“The First Intifada.”)
While some say that it was the moment Israelis directly affected a Palestinian, others suggest that the beginnings of the first Intifada is all due to the manner in which the Six Day War concluded and what it accomplished. Regardless, all of these events and contributing factors must be closely analyzed in order to fully comprehend the not-so-humble beginnings of the first Intifada. What caused the first Intifada is not so important, however. What is vital to understand is the manner in which the individuals who partook in the event behaved. There were numerous people who did things that they would have never done if the circumstances had not been presented as such. These things that are being talked about mostly include the violent actions that were performed by the Palestinians. Many innocent people were taking up arms just to believe in something that the strongly believed in and to obtain the freedom that they observed.
It did not come as a surprise that so many Palestinians were fighting for their rights, however, because of the fact that they grew tired of following the same basic rules. These rules interfered with the Palestinians hopes and dreams because of the manner in which they were limited to the kinds of jobs that they could obtain. In fact, around the time that the first Intifada came around, around 40% of Palestinians had to work in Israel. What this meant for the Israelis was the fact that they would probably be able to exert the kind of control that they wished to exert on certain Palestinians or else they would be threatened to lose their jobs. Additionally, is was common for Palestinians who had a college degree still face trouble finding a solid job. This was due to the fact that the Israelis would strictly control the kind of jobs that certain Palestinians were allowed to have. It goes without saying that these were not good living conditions for the Palestinians and that the Israelis were given the upper hand for the majority of the Intifada. No matter how successful a Palestinian was able to be in college, right after college, this individual would be faced with great adversity and bold tribulations in order to find a degree-related job. Often times, these college Palestinians were given work that they could have done without a degree. This was done by the Israelis as a form of humiliation and to firmly instill the belief that they were invariably part of the lower class. Perhaps the primary reason as to why it would be helpful to become cognizant of what it was that sparked the firs Intifada would be to serve as a guide so that individuals would not make the same mistakes in the near future. Some would argue that there is really no true point, however, and then state the ideology that history is bound to repeat itself. In order to avoid this from happening, all kinds of people must come to terms with the idea that sometimes conflicts can be resolved with words and that violence is not always a necessity when making negotiations with other neighboring countries. (Bregman)
A&E Television Networks, LLC. “Intifada Begins on Gaza Strip – Dec 09, 1987.” HISTORY.com. A&E Television Networks, LLC, n.d. Web. 17 June 2015.
American Muslims for Palestine. “Empowerment through Education and Action.” American Muslims for Palestine. American Muslims for Palestine, 16 Aug. 2009. Web.< introduction>.
Berman, Ellie. “Background & Overview – Israel War of Independence | Jewish Virtual Library.” Home | Jewish Virtual Library. American-Israeli Cooperative Enterprise, n.d. Web. 17 June 2015.
Bregman, Ahron. Israel’s Wars: A History Since 1947. London: Routledge, 2002. Print.
“The First Intifada.” Stand for Israel. International Fellowship of Christians and Jews™, n.d. Web. 17 June 2015.
Friedman, Thomas L. “Israeli Army Assailed Over Glider Raid – NYTimes.com.” The New York Times – Breaking News, World News & Multimedia. The New York Times, 28 Nov. 1987. Web. 17 June 2015.
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