VII. From A Sense Of Victory To Separate Peace And Civil War

VII. From A Sense Of Victory To Separate Peace And Civil War

Period
VII. From A Sense Of Victory To Separate Peace And Civil War
6 October 1973 to 25 May 1982

The period between the 1973 war and the 1982 Israeli invasion of Lebanon was a tumultuous one in Palestinian history. Beginning on a high note, the 1973 war and the 1973–74 oil embargo inspired a sense of Arab confidence and unity. At the same time, the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) achieved increasing regional and international recognition as the legitimate representative of the Palestinian people, allowing the Palestinians a voice in the global diplomatic arena where they had long been denied one. By the beginning of the 1980s, however, many of these gains had proven short-lived or illusory. Fissures emerged within the PLO, and the Arab world was riven by division: civil war raged in Lebanon and Egypt signed a separate peace treaty with Israel. Other changes, including the ascendance of the Right in Israeli politics, the entrenchment of colonization in the West Bank and Gaza, and the development of Islamist political movements, would continue to have long-term implications well beyond 1981.

In October 1973, Egyptian and Syrian forces launched a combined surprise attack against Israeli positions. Initial Arab military successes were reversed after the United States intervened to resupply Israel with arms, but many Arabs felt that the war had at least partially redeemed the humiliation of 1967. The oil-producing Arab states initiated an embargo against Israel’s supporters, with significant economic and political impact.

The PLO also made significant diplomatic gains. At the November 1973 Arab summit in Algiers, the Arab heads of state agreed to recognize the PLO as the sole representative of the Palestinian people. In November 1974, the United Nations General Assembly recognized the right of the Palestinian people to self-determination, national independence, and sovereignty in Palestine. It also recognized the PLO as the representative of the Palestinian people and granted it observer status at the UN. For the first time, PLO Chairman Yasir Arafat addressed the General Assembly and dramatically called on the world community to decide between the olive branch and the freedom fighter’s gun.

The PLO paid a cost for its increased international acceptance, however. The Rejection Front—a coalition of PLO member groups that included the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine and a number of smaller factions mostly sponsored by Syria and Iraq—rejected the Ten-Point Program adopted by the Palestinian National Council in 1974, which expressed a willingness to establish Palestinian sovereignty within parts of historic Palestine and was thus seen to implicitly accept Israel’s rule over the rest. Already destabilized by internal divisions, the PLO then became embroiled in the lengthy and brutal civil war in Lebanon that started in April 1975. The 1969 Cairo Agreement had given the PLO autonomy in Lebanon’s refugee camps, and it had built up significant military and civil infrastructure there. When the civil war erupted, the PLO became a key player, engaging in direct conflict with various Lebanese and Syrian forces. In March 1978, Israel invaded southern Lebanon and established its proxy, the South Lebanon Army, on areas south of the Litani River.

The extent of the Arab world’s internal conflicts became even more acute as the Egyptian president Anwar al-Sadat visited Jerusalem in November 1977, six months after Menachem Begin’s Likud electoral victory. Separate Egyptian-Israeli negotiations, presided over by President Jimmy Carter, resulted in the September 1978 Camp David Accords (one of which consisted in a framework for Palestinian autonomy in the West Bank and Gaza) and the March 1979 Egyptian-Israeli peace treaty. As Jordan refused to join talks on autonomy, Egypt and Israel started to negotiate on the issue bilaterally. Between May 1979 and November 1981, they held a dozen negotiation sessions in which they defined their positions on issues such as modalities of elections in the West Bank and Gaza; participation of East Jerusalem Palestinians in elections; powers of the Palestinian self-governing authority (whether administrative or legislative); and the territorial jurisdiction for the autonomous area. However, no real progress was made: Having gained a separate peace treaty with Egypt, Israel had no incentive to make concessions on the Palestinian question.    

In fact, the colonization of the West Bank and Gaza accelerated while negotiations with Egypt were under way. In April 1979, Jewish settlement in the Old City of Hebron started. In July 1980, the annexation of East Jerusalem was further consolidated through the Basic Law on Jerusalem, which declared Jerusalem, “complete and united,” to be Israel’s capital. By 1981, more than 100,000 settlers were living in the West Bank and Gaza, benefiting from the institutional support of the state as well as non-state groups like Gush Emunim (the Bloc of the Faithful), a religious-nationalist organization formed in 1974 that called for Jewish settlement throughout the occupied territories. To further strengthen control over the occupied territories and impose its concept of Palestinian autonomy unilaterally, the Military Government established in November 1981 the “Civil Administration” in the West Bank and Gaza, while the Knesset voted in December 1981 to apply Israeli law in the Golan Heights.

The Palestinian population inside Israel, though, became increasingly active in the 1970s. With the lifting of military rule in 1966 and renewed contacts with Palestinians in the West Bank and Gaza after the 1967 war, Palestinians inside Israel reasserted their political voice and resisted attempts to manipulate them through a coopted leadership. Palestinians in Israel formed new organizations (such as the Committee for the Defense of Arab Lands, founded in 1975) and elected more vocal and activist political leaders (such as Tawfiq Zayyad, who was elected mayor of Nazareth in 1975). When Israel announced that it would expropriate thousands of dunams of land in the Galilee to expand Jewish settlements, Palestinians demonstrated and held general strikes on 30 March 1976 not only in Arab localities in Israel, but also in the West Bank, the Gaza Strip, and in Palestinian camps in Lebanon. Israeli security forces violently repressed the protests, killing six unarmed demonstrators, wounding nearly one hundred, and arresting hundreds more. The event, which came to be known as Land Day, has been observed annually ever since.

The period from 1973 to 1981 also saw the rise of political Islam in the Arab world, including Palestine. The perceived failure of Arab nationalism to achieve its goals (regionally, and particularly with regard to Palestine) had led to widespread disillusionment with secular Arab politics, and the repression of Islamic political movements had led to a rise of militant political Islam, particularly in Egypt and Syria. In 1979, the Islamic revolution in Iran inspired those who envisioned a revolutionary politics rooted in Islam. Inside Israel, Abdallah Nimr Darwish, who had in 1971 founded the Islamic Movement primarily to provide welfare services for Muslim communities, became active in the Family of Jihad (Usrat al-jihad), an underground group inside Israel that was inspired by the militant Islamic politics of the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt and Syria as well as the Islamic revolution in Iran. In Gaza, Ahmad Yasin (who in December 1987 was one of the founding members of Hamas) was active in al-Mujamma‘ al-Islami, an Islamic charity that funded religious and civil society institutions; Fathi Shiqaqi and Abd al-Aziz Awda, two Palestinian refugees inspired by militant Islamic politics in Egypt and the Iranian revolution, founded the Islamic Jihad movement in Palestine in 1979.

The significance of these developments would only become apparent in later decades. Yet even by the beginning of the 1980s, it was clear that the optimism sparked in 1973 had borne only partial fruit. The PLO had achieved unprecedented international recognition for the Palestinian people, but it was also beset by internal friction and mired in the bloody Lebanese civil war. Palestinians within Israel were increasingly vocal in resisting marginalization and oppression, but the colonization of the West Bank and Gaza became ever more entrenched. Meanwhile, regional instability, at the roots of which laid the unresolved Palestine question, escalated and would continue to do so.

AW

 

Selected Bibliography

al-Dajani, Ahmad Sidqi. “The PLO and the Euro-Arab Dialogue.Journal of Palestine Studies 9, no.3 (Spring 1980): 81–98.

Sayigh, Rosemary. Too Many Enemies: The Palestinian Experience in Lebanon. London: Zed Books, 1993.

Sayigh, Yezid. Armed Struggle and the Search for State: The Palestinian National Movement, 1949–1993. Washington, DC: Institute for Palestine Studies and Oxford University Press, 1997.

Taylor, Alan R. “The PLO in Inter-Arab Politics.Journal of Palestine Studies 11, no.2 (Winter 1982): 70–81.

Zayyad, Tawfiq. “The Fate of the Arabs in Israel.Journal of Palestine Studies 6, no.1 (Autumn 1976): 92–103.

VII. From A Sense Of Victory To Separate Peace And Civil War
E.g., 2018/12/14
E.g., 2018/12/14

From A Sense Of Victory To Separate Peace And Civil War

1973

1974

1975

1976

1977

1978

1979

1980

1981

Palestinian Defeat, Divisions And Survival

1982

Violence

October War.
6 October 1973 - 27 October 1973

Violence

October War, 1st Day
6 October 1973

Violence

October War, 2nd Day
7 October 1973

Violence

October War, 3rd Day
8 October 1973

Violence

October War, 4th Day
9 October 1973

Violence

October War, 5th Day
10 October 1973

Violence

October War, From the 6th to 10th Day
11 October 1973 - 14 October 1973

Violence

American Airlift
14 October 1973 - 14 November 1973

Violence

Israeli Army Crosses the Suez Canal Westwards
15 October 1973 - 22 October 1973

Sanctions Socio-Economic

Arab Oil, a Weapon in the Battle
17 October 1973 - 21 October 1973

Diplomatic

American-Soviet Agreement on a Cease-fire
21 October 1973

Diplomatic Violence

Security Council Resolution S/RES/338
22 October 1973

Violence Diplomatic

Israeli Advance Continues and an International Nuclear Crisis Looms
23 October 1973 - 27 October 1973

Diplomatic

Kilometer 101 Talks
11 November 1973

Diplomatic Policy/program

6th Arab Summit Is Held in Algiers
26 November 1973 - 28 November 1973

Sanctions

Israel Deports Eight Leaders of the Palestine National Front.
10 December 1973

Diplomatic

Opening of an Arab-Israeli Peace Conference in Geneva
21 December 1973

Diplomatic

Sinai I Agreement
18 January 1974 - 3 March 1974

Sanctions Socio-Economic

Arab Oil Embargo Is Lifted
8 March 1974

Violence

Attrition in the Golan
12 March 1974 - 15 April 1974

Violence

Palestinian Operations in Northern Israel
11 April 1974

Diplomatic

Israel and Syria Sign a Disengagement Agreement
31 May 1974

Policy/program

12th Palestine National Council Is Held in Cairo
1 June 1974 - 8 June 1974

Diplomatic

Palestine Question Is Placed on the Agenda of the UN General Assembly
21 September 1974

Diplomatic

Egypt and Syria Support PLO Representativeness
21 September 1974

Institutional

Palestinian Rejection Front
10 October 1974

Diplomatic Policy/program

7th Arab Summit Meeting in Rabat
28 October 1974

Diplomatic Policy/program

Arafat Addresses the UN General Assembly
13 November 1974

Diplomatic Institutional

GA Resolution 3210 (XXIX)
14 November 1974

Diplomatic Legal

GA Resolutions 3236 and 3237 (XXIX)
22 November 1974

Violence

Palestinian Operations from South Lebanon
5 March 1975 - 20 November 1975

Diplomatic

Negotiations for Sinai II Fail
7 March 1975 - 22 March 1975

Violence

Start of Civil War in Lebanon
13 April 1975

Diplomatic

Sinai II Agreement Reached
20 August 1975 - 4 September 1975

Diplomatic

US-Israel Memorandum of Understanding
1 September 1975

Diplomatic Institutional

PLO Official Office in Paris
31 October 1975

Popular action

Civil Disobedience in West Bank
November 1975 - March 1976

Diplomatic Institutional

PLO Observer at the Food and Agriculture Organization
8 November 1975

Diplomatic

GA Resolution 3375 (XXX)
10 November 1975

Diplomatic Institutional

GA Resolution 3376 (XXX)
10 November 1975

Diplomatic

GA Resolution 3379 (XXX)
10 November 1975

Diplomatic Institutional

Security Council Resolution S/RES/381 and Presidential Statement
30 November 1975

Violence

Premeditated Israeli Air Attack Against Palestinians in Lebanon
2 December 1975

Diplomatic Institutional

The PLO at the Security Council
4 December 1975

Diplomatic Violence

Draft Security Council Resolution S/11898
8 December 1975

Popular action

Palestinians in Israel Mobilize Against Confiscation
1 January 1976 - 6 March 1976

Diplomatic Institutional

The PLO at the Security Council
12 January 1976

Diplomatic

Draft Security Council Resolution S/11940
26 January 1976

Diplomatic Colonization

Draft Security Council Resolution S/12022
25 March 1976

Popular action Violence

Palestinian "Land Day"
30 March 1976

Institutional

Municipal Elections Are Held in the West Bank
12 April 1976

Violence

Syrian Forces Enter Lebanon
31 May 1976

Diplomatic

Evacuation of US Nationals from Beirut with PLO Assistance
16 June 1976 - 20 June 1976

Violence

Plane Hijacked to Entebbe
27 June 1976 - 4 July 1976

Diplomatic

Draft Security Council Resolution S/12119
29 June 1976

Violence

Fall of Tal al-Za'atar
12 August 1976

Diplomatic Institutional

PLO Becomes a Full Member of the Arab League
6 September 1976

Diplomatic Violence

Arab Summit on Palestinian-Syrian Ceasefire in Lebanon
16 October 1976 - 18 October 1976

Policy/program

13th Palestine National Council Meets in Cairo
12 March 1977 - 22 March 1977

Policy/program

President Carter for a Palestinian Homeland
16 March 1977 - 26 May 1977

Diplomatic

US State Department Releases First Human Rights Report
May 1977

Biographical

Likud's Victory in Israeli Elections
17 May 1977

Policy/program Colonization

Menachem Begin: "Territories Are Not Occupied"
19 May 1977

Popular action

Municipalities in the West Bank and Gaza Affirm the PLO Program in a Message to the US and USSR
8 August 1977

Policy/program

Israel's Conditions for Geneva Conference
25 September 1977

Diplomatic Policy/program

Joint US-Soviet Statement on Geneva Conference
1 October 1977

Diplomatic

US Steps Back from the US-Soviet Statement on the Geneva Conference
5 October 1977

Diplomatic

Sadat's Visit to Jerusalem
19 November 1977 - 21 November 1977

Diplomatic

Arab States Take Position Against Sadat's Visit to Jerusalem
5 December 1977

Policy/program

Israel's Autonomy Plan for the West Bank and Gaza Strip
28 December 1977

Institutional Policy/program

29th Zionist Congress is Held in Jerusalem
20 February 1978 - 1 March 1978

Violence

Fatah Commando Operation and Israel's "Litani Operation"
11 March 1978 - 18 March 1978

Diplomatic Violence

Security Council Resolution S/RES/425
19 March 1978

Violence

Wadi Haddad Dies in Berlin, East Germany
28 March 1978

Violence

Israel Establishes a "Security Zone" in South Lebanon
13 May 1978

Diplomatic Legal

Camp David Summit; Camp David Accords
5 September 1978 - 17 September 1978

Policy/program

The PLO Executive Condemns the Camp David Accords.
19 September 1978

Popular action

Palestinians in the West Bank and Gaza Reject the Camp David Autonomy Plan
16 October 1978 - 4 November 1978

Policy/program

Summit of Arab States in Baghdad Condemns Camp David Accords
5 November 1978

Policy/program

14th Palestine National Council is Held in Damascus
15 January 1979 - 22 January 1979

Violence

Ali Hassan Salameh Is Killed in Beirut
22 January 1979

Contextual

Islamic Revolution in Iran.
11 February 1979

Diplomatic Colonization

Security Council Resolution S/RES/446
22 March 1979

Diplomatic Legal

Egyptian-Israeli Peace Treaty Is Signed in Washington, DC
26 March 1979

Sanctions

Arab Sanctions Against Egypt
27 March 1979 - 31 March 1979

Violence

A PLF Operation in Nahariya
22 April 1979

Diplomatic Policy/program

1st Session of Israeli-Egyptian Talks on Palestinian Autonomy is Held in Beersheba
25 May 1979

Diplomatic

2nd Session of Israeli-Egyptian Talks on Palestinian Autonomy is Held in Alexandria
11 June 1979 - 12 June 1979

Diplomatic

3rd Session of Israeli-Egyptian Talks on Palestinian Autonomy is Held in Herzliya
25 June 1979 - 26 June 1979

Diplomatic

4th Session of Israeli-Egyptian Talks on Palestinian Autonomy is Held in Alexandria
5 July 1979 - 6 July 1979

Diplomatic Policy/program

5th Session of Israeli-Egyptian Talks on Palestinian Autonomy is Held in Haifa
5 August 1979 - 6 August 1979

Legal Colonization

Israelis Are Permitted to Buy Land in Occupied Territories
16 September 1979

Diplomatic Policy/program

6th Session of Israeli-Egyptian Talks on Palestinian Autonomy is Held in Alexandria
26 September 1979 - 27 September 1979

Diplomatic

Israeli-Egyptian Talks on Palestinian Autonomy Are Held in London
25 October 1979 - 26 October 1979

Popular action

Mayors in the West Bank Threaten Resignation
11 November 1979 - 5 December 1979

Diplomatic Policy/program

7th Session of Israeli-Egyptian Talks on Palestinian Autonomy is Held in Cairo
18 December 1979 - 19 December 1979

Diplomatic Policy/program

Palestinian Autonomy Is Discussed at the Sadat-Begin Summit in Aswan
7 January 1980 - 10 January 1980

Policy/program Diplomatic

Israeli Model for Palestinian Self-Governing Authority
17 January 1980

Policy/program Diplomatic

Egyptian Model for Palestinian Self-Governing Authority
28 January 1980

Diplomatic

8th Session of Israeli-Egyptian Talks on Palestinian Autonomy is Held in Herzliya
31 January 1980 - 1 February 1980

Colonization

Israeli Settlement in the Old City of Hebron
10 February 1980 - 23 March 1980

Diplomatic

Session of Israeli-Egyptian Talks on Palestinian Autonomy is Held in Scheveningen
27 February 1980 - 29 February 1980

Diplomatic Colonization

Security Council Resolution S/Res/465
1 March 1980

Diplomatic Policy/program

Session of Israeli-Egyptian Talks on Palestinian Autonomy is Held in Alexandria
27 March 1980

Diplomatic Policy/program

Session of Israeli-Egyptian Talks on Palestinian Autonomy is Held in Herzliya
1 May 1980 - 7 May 1980

Violence

Palestinian Operation Against Settlers in Hebron
2 May 1980 - 3 May 1980

Diplomatic

Egypt Decides to Suspend Talks with Israel on Palestinian Autonomy
10 May 1980

Violence

Assassination Attempts Against West Bank Mayors
2 June 1980

Diplomatic Policy/program

Venice Declaration
13 June 1980

Diplomatic

Committee Session of Israeli-Egyptian Talks on Palestinian Autonomy Is Held in Cairo
14 July 1980 - 15 July 1980

Legal

Israel's Basic Law on Jerusalem
30 July 1980

Diplomatic

Egypt's Response to Israel's Basic Law on Jerusalem
3 August 1980

Diplomatic Sanctions

Security Council Resolution S/RES/478
20 August 1980

Popular action Sanctions

Birzeit University Is Closed
14 November 1980

Institutional

15th Palestine National Council Is Held in Damascus
11 April 1981 - 19 April 1981

Violence

Israeli-Syrian Mounting Tension in Lebanon
28 April 1981 - 5 May 1981

Contextual Violence

Israeli Air Force Destroys Iraqi Nuclear Reactor Under Construction Near Bagdad.
7 June 1981

Violence

Severe Israeli-Palestinian Clashes in Lebanon
10 July 1981 - 20 July 1981

Diplomatic

Philip Habib's Mediation for Cease-fire in South Lebanon
24 July 1981

Diplomatic Policy/program

Fahd Plan Is Announced
7 August 1981

Popular action

Palestinian Writers in Occupied Territories Affirm Commitment to Palestine Cause
18 August 1981

Diplomatic

Session of Israeli-Egyptian Talks on Palestinian Autonomy Is Held in Cairo
23 September 1981 - 24 September 1981

Violence

Sadat Is Assassinated; Husni Mubarak Becomes President of Egypt.
6 October 1981

Violence

Majid Abu Sharar Is Assassinated in Rome
9 October 1981

Institutional Popular action

Civil Administration Is Established by the Military in the Occupied Territories
8 November 1981 - 1 December 1981

Diplomatic

Session of Israeli-Egyptian Talks on Palestinian Autonomy Is Held in Cairo
11 November 1981 - 12 November 1981

Legal

Israeli Knesset Votes to Apply Israeli Law in the Golan Heights.
14 December 1981

Diplomatic Legal

Security Council Resolution S/RES/497
17 December 1981

Diplomatic Legal

Draft Security Council Resolution S/14832/Rev.1
20 January 1982

Policy/program

Israel's Proposal for the Palestinian Self-Governing Authority
31 January 1982

Diplomatic

GA Resolution ES/9-1
5 February 1982

Popular action

Strike in the Golan Heights Against Annexation
12 February 1982 - 11 May 1982

Popular action Violence

Popular Resistance and Israeli Measures in West Bank
16 February 1982 - 30 March 1982

Diplomatic

Draft Security Council Resolution S/14943
2 April 1982

Violence

Shooting Spree at the Haram al-Sharif
11 April 1982 - 15 April 1982

Diplomatic

Draft Security Council Resolution S/14985
20 April 1982

Violence

South Lebanon Cease-fire Is Broken
21 April 1982 - 9 May 1982

Diplomatic

Last Stage of Israeli Withdrawal from the Sinai
25 April 1982

Popular action Sanctions

Palestinian Mayors Stand with Those Dismissed by Israel
2 May 1982