Iran, Israel, the United States and Palestine — Who’s the Terrorist?

Hossein Askari
18 min readFeb 7, 2024

Iran or Persia has been a country in West Asia, aka the Middle East, for a number of millennia. Israel was created by the West in 1948. A Palestinian state has been thwarted since Israel’s formation. The United States has been the region’s “self-appointed overseer” since WWII, after taking over the colonial reigns from France and Great Britain. So how did the region turn into such a mess with millions homeless and displaced, numerous wars, millions killed, and an area perceived as the incubator of terrorism and with a future that could witness a nuclear holocaust?

First, a brief history of the Arab-Israeli conflict for context

The conflict began with the Arab-Israel War of 1948–1949. In early April of 1948, Zionists attacked the Arab village of Deir Yassin. The ensuing massacre by Zionists sparked panic and retaliation. The Arabs went to war after the British withdrawal in May of 1948 to prevent the establishment of a Jewish state on their land. The Arabs lost the war, largely through incompetence and by 1949 Israel occupied the Negev all the way to the Palestine-Egypt border, except for Gaza on the coast. By mid 1949, accommodation was reached between the Arab states and Israel — the war was coined the Nakba (the catastrophe) by Arabs and the war of independence by Israel. Hundreds of thousands of Palestinians were displaced as refugees — they lost their homes and land without compensation and were forever barred from returning home.

The Suez Crisis of 1956 was the next major conflict. Israel invaded Egypt’s Sinai Peninsula, capturing most of the land and taking thousands of captives. Israel was joined by France and the UK in this adventure. However, political pressure from the United States, the Soviet Union and the United Nations forced the withdrawal of the Israeli, French and British forces in 1957.

Although Arab-Israeli skirmishes and casualties continued, the next war was in 1967, the 6-Day War. Syria bombarded Israeli villages from the Golan Heights and Egypt mobilized its forces. Israel responded by shooting down Syrian fighter jets, destroying the Egyptian air force on the ground and capturing the Golan Heights from Syria, the Sinai Peninsula and the Gaza Strip from Egypt, and the West Bank from Jordan resulting in control of East and West Jerusalem.

Possibly what could be classified the biggest war occurred in 1973 — The Yom Kippur War. Egyptian and Syrian forces…

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Hossein Askari

MIT engineer-economist. Prof: Tufts, UT-Austin, GW. IMF Board. Mediator: Iran, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait. Writes on: Econ-Finance, Oil, Sanctions, Mid-East, Islam.