Middle east political map

20th Century Events That Shape The Middle East Today

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    20th Century

  • Sykes-Picot Agreement

    Sykes-Picot Agreement
    The Sykes-Picot Agreement was a secret agreement made between Great Britain and France that divided the Middle East into regions that the British and French can control. This is a significant event because most of the countries in the Middle East are now influenced by these two countries. For example, French is a major language in Lebanon, who was under control of the French. The borders given by the Europeans are similar to the borders in the Middle East that exists today.
  • Balfour Declaration

    Balfour Declaration
    Signed on November 2 of 1917, this was a letter written to British foreign secretary, Arthur Balfour, that recognized the establishment of a Jewish homeland in Palestine. This event is very important to the Middle East because this document made Jews believe that Britain would help them establish a Jewish home in Palestine. This event leads to the establishment of Israel and to the horrific Arab-Jew conflict that still exists today.
  • The Holocaust

    The Holocaust
    The Holocaust was a genocide of about 6 million Jews during WW2. It began in 1933, and ended in 1945. Although this event occured in Europe, I believe it greatly affected the Middle East. About 1.7 million surviving Jews had lost their homes and jobs in Europe, and therefore sought to move. The majority of the Jews "returned" to Palestine. This event greatly paved way for the mass immigration of Jews to Palestine, which may have helped establish an Israeli state.
  • Independence of Israel

    Independence of Israel
    Israel declared its independence on this day prior to the departure of David Ben-Guiron, the contemporary Executive Head of the World Zionist Organization. I believe this is a main event that had great affect on the Middle East because the biggest conflict that exists in this region today is the Arab-Jew issue. The independence of Israel led to the mass exodus of the indigenous Palestinians. Today, Palestine are still not a state, but are trying to become one in the land that Israel had taken.
  • Nakba Day

    Nakba Day
    This day is commemorated a day after Israel's independence day. On this day, more than 700,000 Palestinians were expelled or had to flee. Hundreds of Palestinian villages were depopulated or demolished. This is an unforgettable day for the Arabs because this is the day that they have lost Palestine to Israel.
  • Suez Canal Crisis

    Suez Canal Crisis
    The Suez Crisis was a diplomatic confrontation between Egypt and Israel (with France and Great Britain). The United States, Soviet Union, and the United Nations played a major role in forcing France, Israel, and Great Britain to withdraw. Its significance is that Egypt regained control over the Suez Canal and Great Britain supposedly lost their title as "world power".
  • The Six-Day War

    The Six-Day War
    As the war is named, this war lasted six days only, and is also called the June War. This was fought between Israel and Egypt (and other Arab countries such as Jordan and Syria). This is an important event because from this war, Israel took control of the Gaza Strip, the Sinai Peninsula from Egypt, and the West Bank from Jordan.
  • Black September

    Black September
    This month is also known as the "era of regrettable events". It was a month when King Hussein of Jordan deployed his military to defeat Palestinian organizations and to restore his monarchy's rule over the country. This is important because this resulted in the deaths of thousands of Palestinians. Also, although both are Arab states, there is a bitter relationship between the two because of this event.
  • Camp David Accords

    Camp David Accords
    The Camp David Accords was a peace treaty between Israel and Egypt, with the United States bearing witness. The official agreement was signed on March 26, 1979 by Israeli Prime Minister Menachem Begin and Egyptian president Anwar Sadat, with US President Jimmy Carter signing as a witness. This is an important event because this was a move made by Egypt that was regarded as betrayal from the Arab countries.
  • The Persian Gulf War

    The Persian Gulf War
    Also known as Operation Desert Storm, this war began when Saddam Hussein and Iraq invaded Kuwait. The United States and 34 other countries fought against Iraq. Iraq eventually lost badly.