Stern Gang

Partitioning Palestine
History 300 / September 17, 2013

I. Introduction: the UN as arbiter of last resort
II. The mandate period
            A. Britain assumes control of Palestine
                        1. The Balfour Declaration (1917)
                        2. The Mandate (1922)
            B. The Zionist settlers
            C. Palestinian responses and British adjustments
                        1. Communal violence (1922, 1929)
                               and a General Srike (1936)
                        2. The White Paper of 1939
            D. British opportunism during the WW II
III. Crabwalking toward partition
            A. Britain retreats
            B. The UN calls for partition (Nov. 29, 1947)
                        1. A mixed-ethnicity Israel
                        2. A scarcely contiguous Palestine
            C. Confusion in Washington
            D. The proclamation of Israel (May 14, 1948)
IV. Sanctioning the partition
            A. The first Arab-Israeli war
                        1. The invaders: Egypt, Syria, Jordan, Lebanon
                        2. Ethnic cleansing of Palestinians
            B. UN mediation
                        1. The fate of Folke Bernadotte
                        2. Ralph Bunche and the armistice of 1949

Photos and Documents

(PowerPoint presentation)

Further reading
Benny Morris, 1948: A History of the First Arab-Israeli War (New Haven: Yale University Press, 2008)