I’m going to leave out the growth of the Zionist movement and the terrorism of the Israelis during the British mandate. And the fact that Balfour was a rapturist. Bidstrup has covered that well. It’s a hard read but rewarding. My thesis is more geographical.
It is an intriguing fact that Israel has never declared it’s borders. http://www.pbs.org/frontlineworld/fellows/israel/intro.html
Now I wonder why that is. One would think that a country professing a desire for peace and security within it’s borders would take the trouble to survey them out. One possible reason might be that they are somewhat fluid. If we consider the map of partition we can see that the split was about half and half. Today the Israelis control 82% of the land plus a bit of Syria (and Lebanon if the Shebaa Farms are indeed Lebanese).
It has always been a matter of puzzlement to me that Israelis seem to have a strong desire to go live in Palestinian territory. Particularly as they have increased their own land area by over 50% since 1948.
I suppose moving to a new house is only natural if the Israeli Government is prepared to foot the bill.
“The Israeli government spends at least $560 million a year on subsidies, infrastructure, and education for 220,000 Jewish settlers living in the West Bank and Gaza Strip, according to the new report Tuesday in the Israeli daily Ha'aretz. This figure does not include military spending in those areas and it does not include any figures on spending for the 200,000 Jewish settlers living in settlements in and around East Jerusalem. If military spending and settlements in Jerusalem were included in the study, the figure would rise sharply.The report finds that since occupying the West Bank and Gaza in 1967, Israel has spent at least $10.1 billion on settlements, excluding military spending and the settlements in Jerusalem.”
That was in 2003. Today, if we include East Jerusalem, over 400,000 Israelis live in Palestinian territory.
Now I have some trouble with this. I can understand why settlers would flock to subsidized land but why would a State pay it’s citizens to go dwell in a land with which it lives in a condition resembling war.
Of course, it does cause a bit of trouble.