GOVT 331 Kazziha - Impact of Palestine on Arab Politics

GOVT 331 Kazziha - Impact of Palestine on Arab Politics -...

Info iconThis preview shows pages 1–2. Sign up to view the full content.

View Full Document Right Arrow Icon
12 The Impact of Palestine on Arab Politics Walid Kazziha The relationship between the Arab regimes and the Palestine ques- tion has, since the First World War, been a continuous theme in Arab politics. Most of the literature on the subject addresses itself to that aspect of the relationship which deals with the impact of the Arab political order on the Palestine issue. However, very little serious attention has been devoted to examining the effects of the Palestine problem on the evolution and development of the Arab regimes. Perhaps the most important reason for such an uneven interest is the obvious and direct way in which the Arab governments exert their influence on the fate and future of the Palestinians, while the reverse is not so clear except in certain instances. It is the objec- tive of this chapter to examine that latter aspect of the relationship, and study the extent to which the Palestine cause as an issue, and more recently as a political movement, has affected the structure of some Arab political systems and influenced the internal unity of Arab societies, and pro-Arab solidarity. In this respect, a word of warning is in place. The importance of the subject should not be exaggerated. Barry Rubin once claimed (1981: 22) that, 'From 1918 to 1948, and from 1948 to the present, the Palestine conflict decisively shaped the political and intellectual structures of all the Arab countries.' A sweeping generalisation such as this is misleading. A more accurate understanding of the situation would reveal that more often the policies of the Arab regimes and Israel towards one another have shaped the nature of the conflict and the fate of the Palestinian people (Kazziha, 1979). Before 1948, many Arab countries, especially those of the Arab East and Egypt were influenced by the developments in Palestine. The armed clashes between the Arabs of Palestine on the one hand, and the British authorities and Zionist settlers on the other, provoked TIlE IMPACI' OF PALESTINE a strong Arab sentiment among the peoples of the region. The events of 1936-39 in Palestine had a tremendous impact on the political views and opinions of the Arab youth and the attitude of some Arab governments. It contributed to the political consciousness of that generation gf Arab officers who by the early 19508 began to play a decisive role in the political fortunes of the Arab countries around Palestifle. Some of the leading Syrian officers, whose names were later associated with a series of military o€oups, had their first political experience in supporting their Arab brethren in Palestine. Similarly, some of the Iraqi officers who came to power in 1936, had on a number of occasions assisted the Palestinian rebels during the 1936-39 uprising. Nasser in his little book, The Philosophy of the Revolution (1954), describes his early attachment to the Palestinian cause and how he found it a first element ofhis Arab consciousness. He wrote: When I asked myself at that time why I left school so enthusiastically (to protest against the Balfour Declaration) and
Background image of page 1

Info iconThis preview has intentionally blurred sections. Sign up to view the full version.

View Full DocumentRight Arrow Icon
Image of page 2
This is the end of the preview. Sign up to access the rest of the document.

This note was uploaded on 02/25/2008 for the course GOVT 3313 taught by Professor Patel,david during the Spring '08 term at Cornell University (Engineering School).

Page1 / 12

GOVT 331 Kazziha - Impact of Palestine on Arab Politics -...

This preview shows document pages 1 - 2. Sign up to view the full document.

View Full Document Right Arrow Icon
Ask a homework question - tutors are online