Palestine a Nation or State

Essay by BasilraziHigh School, 10th gradeA+, February 2009

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Palestine is one of several names for the geographic region between the Mediterranean Sea and the Jordan River and various adjoining lands. The name Palestine refers to a region of the eastern Mediterranean coast from the sea to the Jordan valley and from the southern Negev desert to the Galilee lake region in the north. Palestine is included between two lines drawn from the Mediterranean eastward-the lower from the southeast corner of the Mediterranean through the southern end of the Dead Sea, and the upper from Tyre to the southern foot of Mount Hermon. Palestine has certain natural boundaries to justify its historical individuality. Palestine embraces the current state of Israel and the Palestinian territories of the West Bank and Gaza Strip.

Following the 1948 Arab-Israeli War, the 1949 Armistice Agreements between Israel and neighboring Arab states eliminated Palestine as a distinct territory. With the establishment of Israel, the remaining lands were divided amongst Egypt, Syria and Jordan.

The Arab governments at this point refused to set up a State of Palestine.

The Palestine State is recognised by over 100 countries. There are also various other proposals for a Palestinian State depending on views of Palestinian statehood, as well as differing definitions of Palestine and "Palestinian".

The traditional Israeli view has been that there is no such thing as a separate Palestinian people, distinct from other Arabs, at least historically. The borders of historical Palestine and surrounding countries were arbitrarily determined and there are already several Arab nations. Therefore, it is unreasonable to demand that Israel should have any responsibility or part in establishing a nation for them. This is summarized by the famous statement of Israeli Prime Minister (1969-74) Golda Meir: "There was no such thing as Palestinians ... It was not as though there was a...