Islamic Cultures Essay Example
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The Arab-Israeli conflict is one of the longest and most difficult to regulate conflicts that lies in the sphere of ethnic and interfaith issues. The world community has made repeated attempts to reconcile the parties to the conflict using international legal instruments, but this did not have an effective result and the confrontation between Israel and Palestine continues to this day (“Israel-Gaza violence: The conflict explained”). To ease the tense situation in the region, the most influential states, as well as major international organizations, are trying to resolve the conflict peacefully. Usually, every peaceful solution is followed by a new confrontation. At the same time, despite the complexity of the Arab-Israeli conflict, it would be inappropriate to define it as absolutely insoluble.
The beginning of the Middle East conflict should be attributed to the 1940s, which is associated with the problem of the creation of Jewish and Arab states in Palestine. This decision was made on November 29, 1947, when the UN General Assembly voted to create two states – Jewish and Arab – in the West Bank, as well as the international zone of Jerusalem. As for the Arab world, this decision was initially rejected by both neighboring Arab states and the Arab population of Palestine itself. The Arabs unanimously did not want to recognize the idea of returning Jews to Palestine, considering this territory their own. From that moment on, open clashes began between Jewish and Arab armed groups.
One of the largest-scale conferences on the settlement of the Middle East conflict is the Madrid conference of 1991. The parties to the conflict had to fulfill the requirements of the Security Council resolutions providing for the liberation of all Arab territories occupied by Israel since 1967 and the right of all states of the region to an independent existence, ensuring the legitimate rights of the Palestinian people, achieving security and peace for Israelis. The most important result of the Madrid meeting was that the parties adopted the formula for subsequent direct negotiations: “peace in exchange for territory.” However, the conference did not produce any real results (“Israel-Gaza violence: The conflict explained”).
The next stage in the settlement of the Arab-Israeli conflict was secret negotiations in Oslo in 1993. Israel and Palestine announced mutual recognition. Palestine has pledged to repeal the paragraph of the Palestinian National Charter requiring the destruction of Israel. However, almost all fundamental questions remained open. This allowed for different interpretations of the agreement. Thus, the Israeli side believed that the treaty paved the way for peace and cooperation, for the final incorporation of all of Jerusalem into the Jewish state. Palestine viewed the agreement as another victory in the struggle of the Palestinian people for national liberation and the creation of a sovereign Palestinian state with its capital in East Jerusalem. In general, the peace talks in Oslo did not resolve any key issues: the independence of Palestine has not yet been proclaimed, refugees cannot return to their places of former residence, the status of Jerusalem has not been determined.
At the present stage, the escalation of the conflict is fueled by new facts and reasons. In particular, in the 2000s, the Israelis sought to limit Palestinian sovereignty by controlling certain areas of East Jerusalem. During the talks, Israeli representatives made concessions on the issue of transferring the Temple Mount to Palestinian sovereignty, demanding that Israel retain control over its western slope. The Palestinians rejected the offer, arguing that the Jews were unfoundedly claiming any part of the Temple Mount. This complex is part of the Palestinian territories occupied since 1967. It is referred to by Muslims as “al-Haram ash-Sharif” (“Noble Shrine”), by the Jews as “Temple Mount” and is an object of worship for both (Peleg, & Waxman).
In 2002, in Beirut, the League of Arab States adopted the official “Arab Peace Initiative” which provided for Israel to completely withdraw from the occupied lands and recognize an independent Palestinian state with its capital in East Jerusalem (Jabareen). Also, Israel will allow Palestinian refugees to return, and Arab states will not threaten Israel’s security. Both Israel and Palestine welcomed the initiative as a basis for negotiations and normalization of relations, Israel refuses to completely leave the occupied territories and opposes the return of Palestinian refugees. A new wave of terror and violence again cancels out all the peace initiatives of the representatives of the United States, the European Union, and the UN. Several plans for resolving the Middle East conflict were proposed in the 21st century, such as the Road Map in 2003. However, Israel sees the plan as another concession to the Arabs, who react to any concessions with an escalation of aggression (Jabareen).
Thus, the general problem of this conflict is the lack of a practical and acceptable methodology for both sides. Despite this, the international community must continue to try to resolve it; any other option would be an admission of defeat. The international community should create a political body with powers of fact-finding, legal qualification, and proposal making. It is also necessary to reduce tension in relations between the parties: to lift any external sanctions against Israel and Palestine, to demand that they renounce offensive rhetoric and recognize each other’s rights. In addition, it is necessary to ensure information transparency and provide the parties with opportunities to express their point of view in the media, political bodies, and scientific centers.
“Israel-Gaza violence: The conflict explained”. BBC Newsbeat online. Last
updated June 21, 2021. Available at: https://www.bbc.com/news/newsbeat-44124396
Jabareen, Yosef. “Territoriality of Negation: Co-Production of ‘creative Destruction’
in Israel.” Geoforum 66 (2015): 11–25. Web.
Peleg, Ilan, and Waxman, Dov. Israel’s Palestinians: The Conflict Within. New York:
Cambridge University Press, 2011. Web.