Before and After the Establishment of the State of Israel
Before the establishment of the State of Israel, the United Nations offered a partition plan that proposed a two-state solution, with 67% of the disputed territory becoming a Palestinian nation, and only 33% (much of that land being in the Negev) becoming Israel. Jerusalem would not be held by either side. The Jews (they were not yet considered Israelis) accepted this plan, while the Arabs did not. Zionists were willing to sacrifice most of the land they wanted, including major holy sights, for a chance at peace with their neighbors. Then, during the war that ensued after a pan-Arab attack immediately following the British withdrawal from Palestine, Israel continued to respect the rights of Palestinians living under the new country’s rule. Contrary to popular belief, they did not expel any Arab civilians during that war. Rather, many left on their own accord after the Mufti of Jerusalem warned them against staying. Those who remained, however, were granted full Israeli citizenships, and their descendents continue to function as such.