Today in Middle Eastern history: the Lebanon War begins (1982)

The 1982-85 Lebanon War is probably better regarded as a phase of the 1975-90 Lebanese Civil War. It essentially marks the third phase of that longer war, following its first (the Lebanese National Movement and the PLO against the Christian Phalanges) and second (the Phalanges against the intervening Syrian army and the PLO against Israel) phases. … Continue reading Today in Middle Eastern history: the Lebanon War begins (1982)

Today in Middle Eastern history: the Faysal-Weizmann Agreement (1919)

As World War I was wrapping up, and the Ottoman Empire was collapsing, the question of what to do with all that soon-to-be-former Ottoman land loomed large. Most Ottoman territory outside of Anatolia was predominantly Arab, and the 1916-1918 Arab Revolt had done much to advance British war aims in the Middle East, so the … Continue reading Today in Middle Eastern history: the Faysal-Weizmann Agreement (1919)

Today in Middle Eastern history: the Faysal-Weizmann Agreement (1919)

As World War I was wrapping up, and the Ottoman Empire was collapsing, the question of what to do with all that soon-to-be-former Ottoman land loomed large. Most Ottoman territory outside of Anatolia was predominantly Arab, and the 1916-1918 Arab Revolt had done much to advance British war aims in the Middle East, so the … Continue reading Today in Middle Eastern history: the Faysal-Weizmann Agreement (1919)

Today in Middle Eastern history: the First Intifada begins (1987)

In contrast with the Second Intifada, which then-Israeli opposition leader Ariel Sharon deliberately provoked when he and 1000 Israeli police officers marched on to the Haram al-Sharif/Temple Mount in September 2000, the First Intifada ("popular uprising") began almost by chance. On December 8, 1987, an Israeli Defense Forces truck crashed into a line of cars stuck at the … Continue reading Today in Middle Eastern history: the First Intifada begins (1987)

Today in Middle Eastern history: the Balfour Declaration (1917)

It was on November 2, 1917, when British Foreign Secretary Arthur James Balfour sent a relatively brief letter to Walter Rothschild that would wind up becoming one of the most consequential events in modern Middle Eastern history. Really, if you’d looked at the letter at the time, you probably wouldn’t have envisioned the importance it … Continue reading Today in Middle Eastern history: the Balfour Declaration (1917)