The Arab Revolt against the British That Created the Israel-Palestinian Conflict

For three years before World War II, Palestinian Arabs attacked Jews and fought against British rule—leaving roughly 500 Jews and 250 British dead. Oren Kessler, the author of a new book on the episode, explains how it laid the groundwork for much of what has transpired since then:

The Great Revolt of 1936 to 1939 was the crucible in which Palestinian identity coalesced. It united rival families, urban and rural, rich and poor, in a single struggle against a common foe: the Jewish national enterprise—Zionism—and its midwife the British empire. A six-month general strike, one of the longest anywhere in modern history, roused Arabs and Muslims worldwide to the Palestine cause.

Yet the revolt would ultimately turn on itself. A convulsion of infighting and score-settling shred the Arab social fabric, sidelined pragmatists for extremists, and propelled tens of thousands of refugees out of the country. British forces did the rest, seizing arms, occupying cities, and waging a counterinsurgency. . . . When the dust cleared, at least 5,000—perhaps more than 8,000—Arabs were dead, of whom at least 1,500 likely fell at Arab hands. More than 20,000 were seriously wounded. Arab Palestine’s fighting capacity was debilitated, its economy gutted, its leaders—above all, Grand Mufti Amin al-Husseini—banished.

The revolt to end Zionism had instead crushed the Arabs themselves, leaving them crippled in facing the Jews’ own drive for statehood a decade on. . . . To the Jews the insurgency would leave a very different inheritance. It was then Zionist leaders began to abandon illusions over Arab acquiescence, to confront the unnerving prospect that fulfilling their dreams of sovereignty might mean forever clinging to the sword.

Read more at History News Network

More about: Amin Haj al-Husseini, British Mandate, Israeli history, Israeli-Palestinian Conflict

Hizballah Is Learning Israel’s Weak Spots

On Tuesday, a Hizballah drone attack injured three people in northern Israel. The next day, another attack, targeting an IDF base, injured eighteen people, six of them seriously, in Arab al-Amshe, also in the north. This second attack involved the simultaneous use of drones carrying explosives and guided antitank missiles. In both cases, the defensive systems that performed so successfully last weekend failed to stop the drones and missiles. Ron Ben-Yishai has a straightforward explanation as to why: the Lebanon-backed terrorist group is getting better at evading Israel defenses. He explains the three basis systems used to pilot these unmanned aircraft, and their practical effects:

These systems allow drones to act similarly to fighter jets, using “dead zones”—areas not visible to radar or other optical detection—to approach targets. They fly low initially, then ascend just before crashing and detonating on the target. The terrain of southern Lebanon is particularly conducive to such attacks.

But this requires skills that the terror group has honed over months of fighting against Israel. The latest attacks involved a large drone capable of carrying over 50 kg (110 lbs.) of explosives. The terrorists have likely analyzed Israel’s alert and interception systems, recognizing that shooting down their drones requires early detection to allow sufficient time for launching interceptors.

The IDF tries to detect any incoming drones on its radar, as it had done prior to the war. Despite Hizballah’s learning curve, the IDF’s technological edge offers an advantage. However, the military must recognize that any measure it takes is quickly observed and analyzed, and even the most effective defenses can be incomplete. The terrain near the Lebanon-Israel border continues to pose a challenge, necessitating technological solutions and significant financial investment.

Read more at Ynet

More about: Hizballah, Iron Dome, Israeli Security