“I have disliked war since I have known it. I don’t think people like bombing people and there must be some very strong reason for this hatred which costs the lives of innocent people. I’m very satiated with the fact that “Every war is fought for resources”. In case of the Middle East, it started with the land. Jerusalem, the holy land for three religions Islam, Judaism, and Christianity was a promised land, of which, the Arabs and the Jews sought total control.”
Middle East! Ring any bells? Newspapers, televisions and social media are flooded with this peculiar name, which carries its notorious image and that goes without saying. We know what is happening, we somehow anticipate where it is headed, but do we know what led to this? There must be some factors which caused the Middle East to become what it is today, a confluence of colliding powers.
The British were cocky enough to interfere and build colonies in the name of development and building nationalism and in this case, there was a quest for Arab nationalism. Ottoman Empire flourished for years with its successful anarchies who ruled over Arab and non-Arab people. But after the World War One, the British ignited a fire of nationalism in the minds of Arab people and they united Arabs to rage guerilla warfare and gradually, the Ottoman Empire collapsed and the British formed satellite states in Arab land.
Well, you may say that hey! British people were heroes who helped Arabs. But here is the irony. Jews were coming into the Palestinian land (Middle East state) marching with the high hopes of returning to their promised land of which they were deposed by the Romans. The movement called Zionism was at the peak, which meant the re – establishment of a Jewish homeland. So the British undertook Balfour declaration, with the intent to establish the Jews in Palestine. They wanted to counter the Pro-American mentality of the modern people and hence thought that they would coexist with Arabs. But maybe we all know how that turned out!
Palestine was flooded with the Jews in 1920’s when the US ended an open-door policy on immigration that meant that the Jews had nowhere to go but Palestine. However, they both had their own reasons and it is difficult to comprehend the righteousness of this situation. On one hand, Jews fled away from the European atrocities who regarded them as “Christ Killers”, and on the other hand, the poor Arabs people saw Jews as another European colony who wanted to capture their holy land.
British allied with local leaders and formed “puppet governments” which gave them a strong control over the regions. They always said that they had a duty towards the people they colonize and if an angry person asks them about what good did they do by colonizing, they would swiftly praise the hospitals, schools, water facilities, sewers, etc which they provided. But everyone knew that all they wanted was to rule to world nation by nation extracting every bit of resource and providing some temporary charms to the people and so, the Arabs and the Jews retaliated, but in their own ways. It was very difficult to control them. In India, less than 100,000 administrators and British soldiers controlled over 400 Million Indians, whereas, in a small state like Palestine, more than 20,000 troops were already sent to calm the situation.
In 1936, Arabs got to know that the Jews were smuggling weapons and they reacted violently which ignited a series of riots and led to the origin of Jihad, the holy fight. In response, the Jews formed an organization named “Irgun” which led some violent attack over Arabs. Now the British government proposed to divide the Palestine into two regions satisfying both needs, but the Arabs who were already pissed from the dirty politics demanded independence and disgraced British. But, the Jews were happy having their settlements flourishing and they started expanding overnight and it pissed the Arabs even more!
British taught Arabs the techniques related to Bombing, guerilla warfare, ambush and assassination to fight the Ottoman Empire but they got it all back when Arabs used same tactics over British forces to give them a run for their sins!
Today we hear a lot happening from Arab spring to rebellious acts in the Middle East. Who is to be blamed? Peoples make nations, and they are the one who destroys them. It doesn’t matter where they belong, on which side they act because sooner or later everything strikes back to where it started. Same is the case with the Middle East. Nothing is ever forgotten, Nothing is forgiven! They revenge their elders being ripped off their lands, they revenge the atrocities poured upon their women and children, and most of all, they revenge broken promises and dirty politics. But the question is, “Should an innocent child pay the price for the actions of the policy makers in past”. You know the answer, but maybe you don’t know what they know and it makes all the difference. The war has been fought all along, and will be fought!
This is just one part of the several stories which led to the Middle East crises, stay tuned and maybe you will figure out, Why Middle East!