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The Story of Palestine

(Flash Slideshow) By: Dr. Mustafa Barghouti

This hour-long presentation by Dr. Mustafa Barghouti is a must see (and save for reference). It explains the past, present and future of Israeli Occupation of Palestine and present facts and figures that you don't see on your TV.

History of Palestine

Palestine is one of the most ancient homelands of humankind. There is evidence that Palestine was inhabited almost two hundred thousand years ago.


Long the site of pilgrimages and wars, the Holy City of Jerusalem is one of the most ancient cities in the world. A city holy for the three monotheistic religions, Al-Quds Al-Sharif is the first qiblah and third of the Holy Sanctuaries, from which the Prophet Mohammed ascended on his divine night journey; the home of the Church of the Holy Sepulchre and the burial place of Jesus Christ; and site of the Wailing (Western) Wall. While it is historically and religiously significant for the international community, the Holy City is of central importance to the Palestinian people and the Arab and Islamic worlds. Jerusalem is the crux of the question of Palestine and the key to war and peace in the region.

Important Events of the Last 100 Years

Important Events of the Last 100 Years of Palestine's History. Would you like to know about the important events in palestine?

Our Land: Palestine Districts-1948

A comprehensive list of the Palestine Districts-1948, find here important information about the Palestine Districts 1948. By clicking on any of the districts names on the map of palestine, or on the list in the left side, you will be able to view a detailed listing of the district's cities/villages

1948 Palestine War

Arab opposition to an Israeli state began after the Balfour Declaration 1917, which supported the idea of a Jewish national homeland. In the 1920s there were anti-Zionist riots in Palestine, after the British mandate government allowed thousands of Jews to immigrate to Palestine from all over the world.

1967 Arab Israeli War

After the Suez-Sinai war Arab nationalism increased dramatically, as did demands for revenge led by Egypt's president Nasser. The formation of a united Arab military command that massed troops along the borders, together with Egypt's closing of the Straits of Tiran and Nasser's insistence in 1967 that the UNEF leave Egypt, led Israel to attack Egypt, Jordan, and Syria simultaneously on June 5 of that year. The war ended six days later with an Israeli victory. Israel's French-equipped air force wiped out the air power of its antagonists and was the chief instrument in the destruction of the Arab armies.

al-Nakba 1948

Al-Nakba (the Catastrophe) marks the day of the mass expulsion and the dispossession of the Palestinian people during the war which had broken out in Palestine. A newly-created Israel forcibly seized around 675 villages and towns in historic Palestine. Of these, 476 villages were totally destroyed and ethnically cleansed of their Palestinian inhabitants. A Palestinian population of almost 1.5 million people – the majority in their country – was effectively reduced by an estimated 85 percent to make way for Jewish immigrants from mainly Eastern Europe fleeing renewed persecution in the aftermath of the Holocaust.

Occupied Territories

The West Bank and the Gaza Strip became distinct geographical units as a result of the 1949 armistice that divided the new Jewish state of Israel from other parts of Mandate Palestine. From 1948-67, the West Bank, including East Jerusalem, was ruled by Jordan, which annexed the area in 1950 and extended citizenship to Palestinians living there. During this period, the Gaza Strip was under Egyptian military administration. In the 1967 war, Israel captured and occupied these areas, along with the Sinai Peninsula (from Egypt) and the Golan Heights (from Syria).

Israeli Palestinian Conflict

Israel occupied the Palestinian lands in 1948 when it announced its independence. It captured the rest of Palestine in 1967. Since then, the Palestinians have lived under Israeli occupation. According to Lt. Col. Abo-Sak, their struggle to liberate themselves was ignored during the Cold War and the competition between the East and the West to gain more influence in the Middle East as a strategic region. Israel has gained strong support in the West as a result of this competition. In the meantime, the Palestinians have been unable to persuade the superpowers to enforce United Nations Resolution 242 and 338 calling for Israeli withdrawal from occupied Arab land.

Israeli Occupation

In the course of the armed conflict that erupted in the Middle East in June 1967, the Israeli military occupied the remainder of Mandated Palestine: the West Bank, including East Jerusalem, which was under Jordanian control, and the Gaza Strip, which was under Egyptian administration. The lines of these areas were defined as such by the 1949 Armistice Agreements that were concluded between Israel and Jordan and Egypt respectively. The Israeli military also occupied the Egyptian Sinai Peninsula and the Syrian Golan Heights. Israel, thus, became a belligerent occupant of those territories.


For more than thirty years, the creation of Jewish settlements has been a central component of Israel's effort to consolidate control over the Gaza Strip and the West Bank, including East Jerusalem. Israeli settlement construction has served not only to facilitate territorial acquisition and to justify the continuing presence of Israel armed forces on Palestinian lands, but also to limit the territorial contiguity of areas populated by Palestinians and thereby to preclude the establishment of a viable independent Palestinian state.

Palestinians of 1948

“Palestinian Arab citizens of Israel,” “Arab citizens of Israel” and the
“Palestinian community in Israel.” Although not all Israeli citizens of Arab origin identify as Palestinian, the Arab community in Israel, including leading civil society organizations and political parties, increasingly use this terminology.

Palestine Refugees

The Palestine refugee problem is the oldest and largest refugee problem, which has been on the agenda of the United Nations since its inception. For five decades the Palestine refugees have endured great injustices and hardships after having been uprooted from their homes and forced to live in diaspora, deprived of minimum human and national rights. Their plight is on the agenda of the peace process, as one of the issues of the final status negotiations, and is considered to be one of the most difficult and complex issues. Clearly, a just solution to the question of Palestine and a lasting peace in the Middle East cannot be achieved without a just solution to the issue of the Palestine refugees.

Palestinian Refugee Camps

UNRWA provides assistance, protection and advocacy for some 4.8 million registered Palestine refugees in Gaza Strip, the West Bank, Syria, Jordan, and Lebanon.

Palestine Right of Return

The Right To Return, a Basic Right Still Denied*

Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO)

Now the Palestinian Authority, it was established in May 1964, following an Arab league decision, under the chairmanship of Ahmad Shuqeiri. A meeting was held in Jerusalem between the 400+ Palestinian members who founded the Palestine Liberation Organization and laid down the structure of the Palestine National Council, the PLO Executive Committee, the Palestine Central Council, the National Fund and the Palestine Liberation Army as well as approving a Palestinian national covenant and basic law; since then the PLO has been an umbrella organization for various Palestinian factions and resistance groups.

Palestinian National Council ( PNC)

Legislative body of the PLO; ultimate decision-making authority of the Palestinians; formulates policies, issues guidelines to the executive Committee, and nominates its members; in effect the Palestinian parliament in-exile with representatives of al sections of the Palestinian community such as resistance groups, trade unions and professional organizations; declared Palestinian independence on November 15th 1988; Current membership is 483,

Palestinian Elections

The first Palestinian General Elections were held on January 20, 1996 in accordance with Article III of the Oslo Accords and the subsequent Palestinian Elections Law of 1995. The aforementioned Law adopts the electoral district system, block vote and open lists.

Palestinian Authority

Interim governing body appointed July 1994 to take over the management of Palestinian affairs from Israel in newly liberated Gaza Strip and Jericho . It is headed by Yasser Arafat, chairman of the PLO. The PNA has jurisdiction over the whole of the formerly occupied areas, except Israeli settlers and nationals, Israel retains responsibility for external defence and foreign affairs.

Palestinian Authority Governorates

After the signing of the Oslo Accords, the Palestinian territories of Gaza Strip and the West Bank were divided into three areas (Area A, Area B, and Area C) and 16 governorates under the jurisdiction of the Palestinian National Authority.

Palestinian Legislative Council

The first elected Palestinian Legislative Council (PLC) was initially conceptualized with the Declaration of Principles (DOP). The idea was further developed in the Israel-Palestinian Interim Agreement (Oslo II) in which the structure, jurisdiction, functions, size, and responsibilities of the Council were determined.

Palestinian Parties

A list of Palestinian Parties that participated in the 2006 Palestinian legislative elections in Gaza Strip and the West Bank.

Palestinian Universities

A list of Palestinian Universities, find here important information about the Palestinian Universities in Gaza Strip and the West Bank.

Palestinian Intifada

Palestinian uprising refers to a series of violent incidents between Palestinians and Israelis between 1987 and approximately 1990.

Palestinian Television

PBC is the official national television that represents the public concern, according to its definition, "the Palestine Broadcasting Corporation is a public national institution that constitutes a major and significant component of the national structure of the Palestinian society in its march towards achieving its basic rights of liberation and independence and the establishment of its independent state over its homeland."


PECDAR is the acronym of the Palestinian Economic Council for Development and Reconstruction. The Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) established PECDAR as an independent institution in 1993 in full cooperation and coordination with the donor community to Palestine in support of the peace process.

Historical Documents

A list of Historical Documents about Palestine, find here important information and Documents about Palestine.

Gaza Strip

Gaza, city and port near the Mediterranean Sea, about 32 km north of the Egyptian border. This ancient city has given its name to the Gaza Strip, a territory that was occupied by Israeli forces from 1967 until 1994. The Gaza Strip covers about 378 sq km (about 146 sq mi) and extends northeast from the Sinai Peninsula along the Mediterranean for about 40 km (about 25 mi).

North Gaza

North Governorate of Gaza Strip includes Jabalia, Beit Hanoun, Beit Lahia, and Al Nazleh village.


Gaza is located on the coast of the Mediterranean Sea, north of the Sinai Peninsula and southwest of Jerusalem. A city of historical and religious importance, Gaza has been disputed since ancient times. Along with the rest of the Gaza Strip, Gaza came under Israeli occupation in 1967. In May 1994 the city became the headquarters of the new Palestinian Authority, which administers Palestinian areas in the Gaza Strip and West Bank.

Deir Al-Balah

This Governorate includes Deir El Balah, Nuseirat, Maghazi, and Al Bureij. The appellation is ascribed to the city of Deir El Balah, which is the administration center for the middle area of Gaza Strip. It includes all the afore-mentioned camps which were erected to shelter the Palestinian refugees whom Israel expelled out of their cities and villages during 1948 war.

Khan Younis

Khan Younis, located in southwest Palestine, is the second largest city of the Gaza Strip next to Gaza City. It is 25 kilometers south of Gaza, 20 kilometers north of the Egyptian borders, and 4 kilometers from the Mediterranean Sea.

The city’s name is formed of two words - Khan meaning hostel and Younis, which refers to Prince Younis Dawadar who built a garrison in 1387 for soldiers guarding travelers and pilgrims on their way to Jerusalem and Mecca. The town square is bordered by this impressive historic fortress that dominates the view.


The ancient city of Rafah is and has been for many years the southern port to Palestine, a port that was the cause of many battles fought against invaders of Palestine in the north and Egypt in the south.

West Bank

West Bank, territory in southwestern Asia, in the Middle East, located west of the Jordan River, occupied by Israel since 1967. It covers an area of about 5879 sq km and supports a population of about 973,500. All of the people are Palestinian Arabs. There is some Jews who have settled in the area since 1967. The West Bank was part of the British League of Nations Palestine mandate from 1922 to 1948, after the first Arab Israeli war in 1948 , Jordan took control of the region in 1949. In 1967 the area was seized by Israel during the Six Day War.

Virtual Gaza Strip: An Online Tour of Gaza Strip
Palestine Recipes: A Collection of Recipes from Palestine
Palestinian Costume: A Collection of Traditional Costumes from Palestine
Palestinian Crafts: A Collection of Traditional Crafts from Palestine
Virtual Palestine: An Online Tour of Palestine Informational Resources about Gaza Strip and Palestine - North Gaza, Gaza, Deir El Balah, Khan Younis and Rafah.

North Gaza : Gaza : Deir El Balah : Khan Younis : Rafah
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