First Intifada

First Intifada

Overview
The First Intifada (also "Intifada") was a Palestinian
Palestinian people
The Palestinian people, also referred to as Palestinians or Palestinian Arabs , are an Arabic-speaking people with origins in Palestine. Despite various wars and exoduses, roughly one third of the world's Palestinian population continues to reside in the area encompassing the West Bank, the Gaza...

 uprising
Rebellion
Rebellion, uprising or insurrection, is a refusal of obedience or order. It may, therefore, be seen as encompassing a range of behaviors aimed at destroying or replacing an established authority such as a government or a head of state...

 against the Israeli
Israel
The State of Israel is a parliamentary republic located in the Middle East, along the eastern shore of the Mediterranean Sea...

 occupation of the Palestinian Territories
Palestinian territories
The Palestinian territories comprise the West Bank and the Gaza Strip. Since the Palestinian Declaration of Independence in 1988, the region is today recognized by three-quarters of the world's countries as the State of Palestine or simply Palestine, although this status is not recognized by the...

. The uprising began in the Jabalia
Jabalya Camp
Jabalia Camp is a Palestinian refugee camp located north of Jabalia. The refugee camp is in the North Gaza Governorate, Gaza Strip. According to the Palestinian Central Bureau of Statistics, the camp had a population of 93,455 in mid-year 2006....

 refugee camp
Refugee camp
A refugee camp is a temporary settlement built to receive refugees. Hundreds of thousands of people may live in any one single camp. Usually they are built and run by a government, the United Nations, or international organizations, or NGOs.Refugee camps are generally set up in an impromptu...

 and quickly spread throughout Gaza
Gaza
Gaza , also referred to as Gaza City, is a Palestinian city in the Gaza Strip, with a population of about 450,000, making it the largest city in the Palestinian territories.Inhabited since at least the 15th century BC,...

, the West Bank
West Bank
The West Bank ) of the Jordan River is the landlocked geographical eastern part of the Palestinian territories located in Western Asia. To the west, north, and south, the West Bank shares borders with the state of Israel. To the east, across the Jordan River, lies the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan...

 and East Jerusalem
East Jerusalem
East Jerusalem or Eastern Jerusalem refer to the parts of Jerusalem captured and annexed by Jordan in the 1948 Arab-Israeli War and then captured and annexed by Israel in the 1967 Six-Day War...

.

Palestinian actions primarily included nonviolent
Nonviolence
Nonviolence has two meanings. It can refer, first, to a general philosophy of abstention from violence because of moral or religious principle It can refer to the behaviour of people using nonviolent action Nonviolence has two (closely related) meanings. (1) It can refer, first, to a general...

 civil disobedience
Civil disobedience
Civil disobedience is the active, professed refusal to obey certain laws, demands, and commands of a government, or of an occupying international power. Civil disobedience is commonly, though not always, defined as being nonviolent resistance. It is one form of civil resistance...

 and resistance
Nonviolent resistance
Nonviolent resistance is the practice of achieving goals through symbolic protests, civil disobedience, economic or political noncooperation, and other methods, without using violence. It is largely synonymous with civil resistance...

, and it was the first time that Palestinians acted together and as a nation. There were general strikes, boycott
Boycott
A boycott is an act of voluntarily abstaining from using, buying, or dealing with a person, organization, or country as an expression of protest, usually for political reasons...

s on Israeli products, refusal to pay taxes
No taxation without representation
"No taxation without representation" is a slogan originating during the 1750s and 1760s that summarized a primary grievance of the British colonists in the Thirteen Colonies, which was one of the major causes of the American Revolution...

, graffiti
Graffiti
Graffiti is the name for images or lettering scratched, scrawled, painted or marked in any manner on property....

, and barricade
Barricade
Barricade, from the French barrique , is any object or structure that creates a barrier or obstacle to control, block passage or force the flow of traffic in the desired direction...

s, but the Palestinian demonstrations that included stone-throwing by youths against the Israel Defense Forces
Israel Defense Forces
The Israel Defense Forces , commonly known in Israel by the Hebrew acronym Tzahal , are the military forces of the State of Israel. They consist of the ground forces, air force and navy. It is the sole military wing of the Israeli security forces, and has no civilian jurisdiction within Israel...

 (IDF) defined the violence for many.

Intra-Palestinian violence was a prominent feature of the Intifada, with widespread executions of alleged Israeli collaborators
Collaborationism
Collaborationism is cooperation with enemy forces against one's country. Legally, it may be considered as a form of treason. Collaborationism may be associated with criminal deeds in the service of the occupying power, which may include complicity with the occupying power in murder, persecutions,...

.
While Israeli forces killed an estimated 1,100 Palestinians and Palestinians killed 164 Israelis, Palestinians killed an estimated 1,000 other Palestinians as alleged collaborators, although fewer than half had any proven contact with the Israeli authorities.

After Israel's capture of the West Bank
West Bank
The West Bank ) of the Jordan River is the landlocked geographical eastern part of the Palestinian territories located in Western Asia. To the west, north, and south, the West Bank shares borders with the state of Israel. To the east, across the Jordan River, lies the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan...

, East Jerusalem
East Jerusalem
East Jerusalem or Eastern Jerusalem refer to the parts of Jerusalem captured and annexed by Jordan in the 1948 Arab-Israeli War and then captured and annexed by Israel in the 1967 Six-Day War...

, Sinai Peninsula
Sinai Peninsula
The Sinai Peninsula or Sinai is a triangular peninsula in Egypt about in area. It is situated between the Mediterranean Sea to the north, and the Red Sea to the south, and is the only part of Egyptian territory located in Asia as opposed to Africa, effectively serving as a land bridge between two...

 and Gaza Strip
Gaza Strip
thumb|Gaza city skylineThe Gaza Strip lies on the Eastern coast of the Mediterranean Sea. The Strip borders Egypt on the southwest and Israel on the south, east and north. It is about long, and between 6 and 12 kilometres wide, with a total area of...

 from Jordan
Jordan
Jordan , officially the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan , Al-Mamlaka al-Urduniyya al-Hashemiyya) is a kingdom on the East Bank of the River Jordan. The country borders Saudi Arabia to the east and south-east, Iraq to the north-east, Syria to the north and the West Bank and Israel to the west, sharing...

 and Egypt
Egypt
Egypt , officially the Arab Republic of Egypt, Arabic: , is a country mainly in North Africa, with the Sinai Peninsula forming a land bridge in Southwest Asia. Egypt is thus a transcontinental country, and a major power in Africa, the Mediterranean Basin, the Middle East and the Muslim world...

 in the Six-Day War
Six-Day War
The Six-Day War , also known as the June War, 1967 Arab-Israeli War, or Third Arab-Israeli War, was fought between June 5 and 10, 1967, by Israel and the neighboring states of Egypt , Jordan, and Syria...

 in 1967, frustration grew among Palestinians in the Israeli-occupied territories
Israeli-occupied territories
The Israeli-occupied territories are the territories which have been designated as occupied territory by the United Nations and other international organizations, governments and others to refer to the territory seized by Israel during the Six-Day War of 1967 from Egypt, Jordan, and Syria...

.
Discussion
Ask a question about 'First Intifada'
Start a new discussion about 'First Intifada'
Answer questions from other users
Full Discussion Forum
 
Unanswered Questions
Encyclopedia
The First Intifada (also "Intifada") was a Palestinian
Palestinian people
The Palestinian people, also referred to as Palestinians or Palestinian Arabs , are an Arabic-speaking people with origins in Palestine. Despite various wars and exoduses, roughly one third of the world's Palestinian population continues to reside in the area encompassing the West Bank, the Gaza...

 uprising
Rebellion
Rebellion, uprising or insurrection, is a refusal of obedience or order. It may, therefore, be seen as encompassing a range of behaviors aimed at destroying or replacing an established authority such as a government or a head of state...

 against the Israeli
Israel
The State of Israel is a parliamentary republic located in the Middle East, along the eastern shore of the Mediterranean Sea...

 occupation of the Palestinian Territories
Palestinian territories
The Palestinian territories comprise the West Bank and the Gaza Strip. Since the Palestinian Declaration of Independence in 1988, the region is today recognized by three-quarters of the world's countries as the State of Palestine or simply Palestine, although this status is not recognized by the...

. The uprising began in the Jabalia
Jabalya Camp
Jabalia Camp is a Palestinian refugee camp located north of Jabalia. The refugee camp is in the North Gaza Governorate, Gaza Strip. According to the Palestinian Central Bureau of Statistics, the camp had a population of 93,455 in mid-year 2006....

 refugee camp
Refugee camp
A refugee camp is a temporary settlement built to receive refugees. Hundreds of thousands of people may live in any one single camp. Usually they are built and run by a government, the United Nations, or international organizations, or NGOs.Refugee camps are generally set up in an impromptu...

 and quickly spread throughout Gaza
Gaza
Gaza , also referred to as Gaza City, is a Palestinian city in the Gaza Strip, with a population of about 450,000, making it the largest city in the Palestinian territories.Inhabited since at least the 15th century BC,...

, the West Bank
West Bank
The West Bank ) of the Jordan River is the landlocked geographical eastern part of the Palestinian territories located in Western Asia. To the west, north, and south, the West Bank shares borders with the state of Israel. To the east, across the Jordan River, lies the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan...

 and East Jerusalem
East Jerusalem
East Jerusalem or Eastern Jerusalem refer to the parts of Jerusalem captured and annexed by Jordan in the 1948 Arab-Israeli War and then captured and annexed by Israel in the 1967 Six-Day War...

.

Palestinian actions primarily included nonviolent
Nonviolence
Nonviolence has two meanings. It can refer, first, to a general philosophy of abstention from violence because of moral or religious principle It can refer to the behaviour of people using nonviolent action Nonviolence has two (closely related) meanings. (1) It can refer, first, to a general...

 civil disobedience
Civil disobedience
Civil disobedience is the active, professed refusal to obey certain laws, demands, and commands of a government, or of an occupying international power. Civil disobedience is commonly, though not always, defined as being nonviolent resistance. It is one form of civil resistance...

 and resistance
Nonviolent resistance
Nonviolent resistance is the practice of achieving goals through symbolic protests, civil disobedience, economic or political noncooperation, and other methods, without using violence. It is largely synonymous with civil resistance...

, and it was the first time that Palestinians acted together and as a nation. There were general strikes, boycott
Boycott
A boycott is an act of voluntarily abstaining from using, buying, or dealing with a person, organization, or country as an expression of protest, usually for political reasons...

s on Israeli products, refusal to pay taxes
No taxation without representation
"No taxation without representation" is a slogan originating during the 1750s and 1760s that summarized a primary grievance of the British colonists in the Thirteen Colonies, which was one of the major causes of the American Revolution...

, graffiti
Graffiti
Graffiti is the name for images or lettering scratched, scrawled, painted or marked in any manner on property....

, and barricade
Barricade
Barricade, from the French barrique , is any object or structure that creates a barrier or obstacle to control, block passage or force the flow of traffic in the desired direction...

s, but the Palestinian demonstrations that included stone-throwing by youths against the Israel Defense Forces
Israel Defense Forces
The Israel Defense Forces , commonly known in Israel by the Hebrew acronym Tzahal , are the military forces of the State of Israel. They consist of the ground forces, air force and navy. It is the sole military wing of the Israeli security forces, and has no civilian jurisdiction within Israel...

 (IDF) defined the violence for many.

Intra-Palestinian violence was a prominent feature of the Intifada, with widespread executions of alleged Israeli collaborators
Collaborationism
Collaborationism is cooperation with enemy forces against one's country. Legally, it may be considered as a form of treason. Collaborationism may be associated with criminal deeds in the service of the occupying power, which may include complicity with the occupying power in murder, persecutions,...

.
While Israeli forces killed an estimated 1,100 Palestinians and Palestinians killed 164 Israelis, Palestinians killed an estimated 1,000 other Palestinians as alleged collaborators, although fewer than half had any proven contact with the Israeli authorities.

General causes


After Israel's capture of the West Bank
West Bank
The West Bank ) of the Jordan River is the landlocked geographical eastern part of the Palestinian territories located in Western Asia. To the west, north, and south, the West Bank shares borders with the state of Israel. To the east, across the Jordan River, lies the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan...

, East Jerusalem
East Jerusalem
East Jerusalem or Eastern Jerusalem refer to the parts of Jerusalem captured and annexed by Jordan in the 1948 Arab-Israeli War and then captured and annexed by Israel in the 1967 Six-Day War...

, Sinai Peninsula
Sinai Peninsula
The Sinai Peninsula or Sinai is a triangular peninsula in Egypt about in area. It is situated between the Mediterranean Sea to the north, and the Red Sea to the south, and is the only part of Egyptian territory located in Asia as opposed to Africa, effectively serving as a land bridge between two...

 and Gaza Strip
Gaza Strip
thumb|Gaza city skylineThe Gaza Strip lies on the Eastern coast of the Mediterranean Sea. The Strip borders Egypt on the southwest and Israel on the south, east and north. It is about long, and between 6 and 12 kilometres wide, with a total area of...

 from Jordan
Jordan
Jordan , officially the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan , Al-Mamlaka al-Urduniyya al-Hashemiyya) is a kingdom on the East Bank of the River Jordan. The country borders Saudi Arabia to the east and south-east, Iraq to the north-east, Syria to the north and the West Bank and Israel to the west, sharing...

 and Egypt
Egypt
Egypt , officially the Arab Republic of Egypt, Arabic: , is a country mainly in North Africa, with the Sinai Peninsula forming a land bridge in Southwest Asia. Egypt is thus a transcontinental country, and a major power in Africa, the Mediterranean Basin, the Middle East and the Muslim world...

 in the Six-Day War
Six-Day War
The Six-Day War , also known as the June War, 1967 Arab-Israeli War, or Third Arab-Israeli War, was fought between June 5 and 10, 1967, by Israel and the neighboring states of Egypt , Jordan, and Syria...

 in 1967, frustration grew among Palestinians in the Israeli-occupied territories
Israeli-occupied territories
The Israeli-occupied territories are the territories which have been designated as occupied territory by the United Nations and other international organizations, governments and others to refer to the territory seized by Israel during the Six-Day War of 1967 from Egypt, Jordan, and Syria...

. The "Iron Fist" policy began by Israel in 1985, economic integration and increasing Israeli settlements which the then Israeli minister of Economics and Finance, Gad Ya'acobi
Gad Yaacobi
Gad Yaacobi was an Israeli Minister, Alignment Knesset member, and Israel Ambassador to the United Nations.-Biography:Yaacobi was born in Kfar Vitkin during Mandate era, where he completed his high-school studies...

, described as "a creeping process of de facto annexation" contributed to a growing militancy in Palestinian society. According to Donald Neff, "The immediate cause" of the First Intifada came on 8 December 1987, "when an Israeli army tank transporter ran into a group of Palestinians from Jabalya refugee camp in Gaza Strip, killing four and injuring seven. An Israeli salesman had been stabbed to death in Gaza two days earlier and there were suspicions among the Palestinian Arabs that the traffic collision had not been an accident."

Background


The First Intifada came when Palestinians were protesting against Israeli acts that they regarded as brutal and when there was a political stalemate between parties involved in the Arab–Israeli conflict
Arab–Israeli conflict
The Arab–Israeli conflict refers to political tensions and open hostilities between the Arab peoples and the Jewish community of the Middle East. The modern Arab-Israeli conflict began with the rise of Zionism and Arab Nationalism towards the end of the nineteenth century, and intensified with the...

. The Palestine Liberation Organization
Palestine Liberation Organization
The Palestine Liberation Organization is a political and paramilitary organization which was created in 1964. It is recognized as the "sole legitimate representative of the Palestinian people" by the United Nations and over 100 states with which it holds diplomatic relations, and has enjoyed...

 (PLO) had not brought about any solutions to alleviate Palestinian suffering and in 1982, during the Israeli invasion of Lebanon
1982 Lebanon War
The 1982 Lebanon War , , called Operation Peace for Galilee by Israel, and later known in Israel as the Lebanon War and First Lebanon War, began on 6 June 1982, when the Israel Defense Forces invaded southern Lebanon...

, the organization had been forced to relocate their offices to Tunis
Tunis
Tunis is the capital of both the Tunisian Republic and the Tunis Governorate. It is Tunisia's largest city, with a population of 728,453 as of 2004; the greater metropolitan area holds some 2,412,500 inhabitants....

.

The Arab summit in Amman
Amman
Amman is the capital of Jordan. It is the country's political, cultural and commercial centre and one of the oldest continuously inhabited cities in the world. The Greater Amman area has a population of 2,842,629 as of 2010. The population of Amman is expected to jump from 2.8 million to almost...

 in November 1987 focused on the Iran–Iraq War, and the Palestinian issue was shunted to the sidelines for the first time in years. Israeli military occupation
Military occupation
Military occupation occurs when the control and authority over a territory passes to a hostile army. The territory then becomes occupied territory.-Military occupation and the laws of war:...

 of Southern Lebanon
Southern Lebanon
Southern Lebanon is the geographical area of Lebanon comprising the South Governorate and the Nabatiye Governorate. These two entities were divided from the same province in the early 1990s...

 and the continued Israeli military occupation of the West Bank and Gaza Strip contributed to growing discontent with the status quo.

Catalysts


Palestinians and their supporters regard the Intifada as a protest against Israeli repression including extrajudicial killings, mass detentions, house demolitions, deportations, and so on. While relatively few houses were demolished in the years before the Intifada, Israelis believed that house demolitions had "deterrent value". After the Intifada began, and the PLO began to compensate affected families, demolitions "were transformed into a stimulus to further escalation of resistance." Further causes to the Intifada can be seen in the Egyptian withdrawal from
Occupation of the Gaza Strip by Egypt
The administration of the Gaza Strip by Egypt occurred between 1948 and October 1956, and again from March 1957 to June 1967. Egypt did not annex the Gaza Strip but left it under Egyptian military rule as a temporary arrangement pending the resolution of the Palestine Question.-Background:After...

 the Gaza Strip
Gaza Strip
thumb|Gaza city skylineThe Gaza Strip lies on the Eastern coast of the Mediterranean Sea. The Strip borders Egypt on the southwest and Israel on the south, east and north. It is about long, and between 6 and 12 kilometres wide, with a total area of...

 and the Jordan
Jordan
Jordan , officially the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan , Al-Mamlaka al-Urduniyya al-Hashemiyya) is a kingdom on the East Bank of the River Jordan. The country borders Saudi Arabia to the east and south-east, Iraq to the north-east, Syria to the north and the West Bank and Israel to the west, sharing...

ian monarchy
Hashemite
Hashemite is the Latinate version of the , transliteration: Hāšimī, and traditionally refers to those belonging to the Banu Hashim, or "clan of Hashim", a clan within the larger Quraish tribe...

 growing weary of pursuing its claims to the West Bank
West Bank
The West Bank ) of the Jordan River is the landlocked geographical eastern part of the Palestinian territories located in Western Asia. To the west, north, and south, the West Bank shares borders with the state of Israel. To the east, across the Jordan River, lies the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan...

.

High birth rates in the Palestinian territories
Palestinian territories
The Palestinian territories comprise the West Bank and the Gaza Strip. Since the Palestinian Declaration of Independence in 1988, the region is today recognized by three-quarters of the world's countries as the State of Palestine or simply Palestine, although this status is not recognized by the...

 and the limited allocation of land for new building and agriculture contributed to the increasing population density and a rise in unemployment. While income from manual labor in Israel benefited some Palestinians, unemployment was increasing, even for those with university degrees. At the time of the Intifada, only one in eight college-educated Palestinians could find degree-related work.

One incident that was often claimed as a motivation is the perceived IDF failure in the "Night of the Gliders
Night of the Gliders
Night of the Gliders , or the Kibia action, refers to an incident that took place on November 25, 1987, in which two Palestinian guerillas infiltrated into Israel from South Lebanon using hang gliders to launch a surprise attack against Israel Defense Forces soldiers. Six Israeli soldiers were...

", or the "Kibia action", in which a Palestinian guerrilla infiltrated an IDF army camp from Lebanon and killed six soldiers.

Leadership


The Intifada was not initiated by any single individual or organization, but the PLO soon established itself at the forefront, enhancing their presence in the territories. Local leadership came from groups and organizations affiliated with the PLO that operated within the Occupied Territories; Fatah
Fatah
Fataḥ is a major Palestinian political party and the largest faction of the Palestine Liberation Organization , a multi-party confederation. In Palestinian politics it is on the left-wing of the spectrum; it is mainly nationalist, although not predominantly socialist. Its official goals are found...

, the Popular Front
Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine
The Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine is a Palestinian Marxist-Leninist organisation founded in 1967. It has consistently been the second-largest of the groups forming the Palestine Liberation Organization , the largest being Fatah...

, the Democratic Front
Democratic Front for the Liberation of Palestine
The Democratic Front for the Liberation of Palestine is a Palestinian Marxist-Leninist, secular political and military organization. It is also frequently referred to as the Democratic Front, or al-Jabha al-Dimuqratiyah...

 and the Palestine Communist Party
Palestine Communist Party
The Palestine Communist Party was a political party in British Mandate of Palestine formed in 1923 through the merger of the Palestinian Communist Party and the Communist Party of Palestine...

. The PLO's rivals in this activity were the Islamic organizations, Hamas
Hamas
Hamas is the Palestinian Sunni Islamic or Islamist political party that governs the Gaza Strip. Hamas also has a military wing, the Izz ad-Din al-Qassam Brigades...

 and Islamic Jihad
Islamic Jihad Movement in Palestine
The Islamic Jihad Movement in Palestine known in the West as simply Palestinian Islamic Jihad , is a small Palestinian militant organization. The group has been labelled as a terrorist group by the United States, the European Union, the United Kingdom, Japan, Canada, Australia and Israel...

 as well as local leadership in cities such as Beit Sahour
Beit Sahour
Beit Sahour is a Palestinian town east of Bethlehem under the administration of the Palestinian National Authority...

 and Bethlehem
Bethlehem
Bethlehem is a Palestinian city in the central West Bank of the Jordan River, near Israel and approximately south of Jerusalem, with a population of about 30,000 people. It is the capital of the Bethlehem Governorate of the Palestinian National Authority and a hub of Palestinian culture and tourism...

. However, the uprising was predominantly led by community councils led by Hanan Ashrawi
Hanan Ashrawi
Hanan Daoud Khalil Ashrawi is a Palestinian legislator, activist, and scholar. She was a protégé and later colleague and close friend of Edward Said. Ashrawi was an important leader during the First Intifada, served as the official spokesperson for the Palestinian Delegation to the Middle East...

, Faisal Husseini
Faisal Husseini
Faisal Abdel Qader Al-Husseini was a Palestinian politician who was considered a possible future leader of the Palestinian people....

 and Haidar Abdel-Shafi
Haidar Abdel-Shafi
Haidar Abdel-Shafi was a Palestinian physician, community leader and political leader who was the head of the Palestinian delegation to the Madrid Conference of 1991.- Background :...

, that promoted independent networks for education (underground schools as the regular schools were closed by the military in reprisal for the uprising), medical care, and food aid. The Unified National Leadership of the Uprising
Unified National Leadership of the Uprising
The Unified National Leadership of the Uprising was a coalition of the Local Palestinian leadership during the First Intifada and played an important role in mobilizing grassroots support for the uprising. In 1987 The Intifada caught the Palestine Liberation Organisation by surprise, the...

 (UNLU) gained credibility where the Palestinian society complied with the issued communiques.

The Intifada


The deep roots of the Intifada lay in the 20 year occupation of the West Bank and Gaza, but it is widely accepted that the First Intifada "sprang from a series of rumors and false allegations of Israeli atrocities and investigation from imams at various mosques."

On December 6, 1987, a Jewish businessman was stabbed to death while shopping in Gaza. Two days later, four residents of the Jabalya refugee camp—the largest of the eight refugee camps in the Gaza Strip—were killed in a traffic accident involving an Israeli trucker. Rumors circulated that the accident was, in fact, a deliberate act of revenge for the stabbing of the Jewish businessman. Mass rioting broke out on December 9 after a Palestinian teen was shot dead by an Israeli soldier after having thrown a Molotov cocktail
Molotov cocktail
The Molotov cocktail, also known as the petrol bomb, gasoline bomb, Molotov bomb, fire bottle, fire bomb, or simply Molotov, is a generic name used for a variety of improvised incendiary weapons...

 at an army patrol.

Hours later, mayhem spread throughout almost all the Arab communities in the West Bank, Gaza, and Jerusalem. Within days the occupied territories were engulfed in a wave of demonstrations and commercial strikes on an unprecedented scale. Equally unprecedented was the extent of mass participation in these disturbances: tens of thousands of ordinary civilians, including women and children. The Israeli security forces used the full panoply of crowd control measures to try and quell the disturbances: cudgels, nightsticks, tear gas, water cannons, rubber bullets, and live ammunition. But the disturbances only gathered momentum.

Soon there was widespread rock-throwing, blocked roads and tire burnings were reported throughout the territories. By December 12, six Palestinians had died and 30 had been injured in the violence. The next day, rioters threw a gasoline bomb at the U.S. consulate in East Jerusalem
East Jerusalem
East Jerusalem or Eastern Jerusalem refer to the parts of Jerusalem captured and annexed by Jordan in the 1948 Arab-Israeli War and then captured and annexed by Israel in the 1967 Six-Day War...

 though no one was hurt.

Other rumors circulated that Palestinian youths wounded by Israeli soldiers were being taken to an army hospital near Tel Aviv and "finished off." Another rumor, claimed Israeli troops poisoned a water reservoir in Khan Yunis. A UN official said these stories were untrue. Only the most seriously injured Palestinians were taken out of the Gaza Strip for treatment, and, in some cases, this probably saved their lives. The water was also tested and found to be uncontaminated.

The Israel Defense Forces reported more than 3,600 Molotov cocktail attacks, 100 hand grenade attacks and 600 assaults with guns or explosives. The attacks were directed at both soldiers and civilians.

Demonstrations evolved from random disturbances to more organized attacks instigated by the Palestinian leadership. By 1988, the Islamist Palestinian movements, Hamas
Hamas
Hamas is the Palestinian Sunni Islamic or Islamist political party that governs the Gaza Strip. Hamas also has a military wing, the Izz ad-Din al-Qassam Brigades...

 and Islamic Jihad
Islamic Jihad Movement in Palestine
The Islamic Jihad Movement in Palestine known in the West as simply Palestinian Islamic Jihad , is a small Palestinian militant organization. The group has been labelled as a terrorist group by the United States, the European Union, the United Kingdom, Japan, Canada, Australia and Israel...

, emerged. The organizations were responsible for hundreds of violent acts, including kidnapping soldiers and attacking Israeli civilians.

The Israeli response to the Palestinian uprising was deadly. The IDF killed many Palestinians at the beginning of the Intifida, the majority killed during demonstrations and riots. Palestinian protests were unpredictable and the IDF was untrained in controlling them. This led to many Palestinian deaths. Israel used mass arrest
Mass arrest
A mass arrest occurs when the police apprehend large numbers of suspects at once. This sometimes occurs at illegal protests. Some mass arrests are also used in an effort combat gang activity. This is sometimes controversial, and lawsuits sometimes result...

s of Palestinians while Palestinian leaders closed down elementary schools and women and children confronted Israeli soldiers on the border.

The large number of Palestinian casualties provoked international condemnation. In subsequent resolutions, including 607
United Nations Security Council Resolution 607
United Nations Security Council Resolution 607, adopted unanimously on January 5, 1988, after recalling Resolution 605 and being informed of the decision of Israel to continue deportations of Palestinians in the occupied territories, the Council reaffirmed the applicability of the Fourth Geneva...

 and 608
United Nations Security Council Resolution 608
United Nations Security Council Resolution 608, adopted on January 14, 1988, after recalling Resolution 607 , the Council expressed regret at Israel's decision to deport Palestinians in the occupied territories in defiance of the previous resolution on the topic.The resolution called upon Israel to...

, the Security Council demanded Israel cease deportations of Palestinians.

Casualties



The Israeli army killed more than 1,000 Palestinians in the 1st intifada and more than 120,000 Palestinians were arrested in the 6 year conflict. In 1990 Ktzi'ot Prison
Ktzi'ot Prison
Ktzi'ot Prison is an Israeli detention facility located in the Haluza sand dunes region. It is Israel's largest detention facility in terms of land area, encompassing ....

, in the Negev
Negev
The Negev is a desert and semidesert region of southern Israel. The Arabs, including the native Bedouin population of the region, refer to the desert as al-Naqab. The origin of the word Neghebh is from the Hebrew root denoting 'dry'...

, held approximately one out of every 50 West Bank and Gazan males older than 16 years.

Gerald Kaufman
Gerald Kaufman
Sir Gerald Bernard Kaufman is a British Labour Party politician, who has been a Member of Parliament since 1970, first for Manchester Ardwick, and then subsequently for Manchester Gorton...

 remarked: "[F]riends of Israel as well as foes have been shocked and saddened by that country's response to the disturbances." In an article in the London Review of Books, John Mearsheimer
John Mearsheimer
John J. Mearsheimer is an American professor of Political Science at the University of Chicago. He is an international relations theorist. Known for his book on offensive realism, The Tragedy of Great Power Politics, more recently Mearsheimer has attracted attention for co-authoring and publishing...

 and Stephen Walt
Stephen Walt
Stephen Martin Walt is a professor of international affairs at Harvard University's John F. Kennedy School of Government. Among his most prominent works are and . He coauthored The Israel Lobby and U.S. Foreign Policy with John Mearsheimer.-Education and career:In 1983, he received a Ph.D. in...

 asserted that the IDF was given truncheon
Baton (law enforcement)
A truncheon or baton is essentially a club of less than arm's length made of wood, plastic, or metal...

s and encouraged to break the bones of Palestinian protesters. Swedish
Sweden
Sweden , officially the Kingdom of Sweden , is a Nordic country on the Scandinavian Peninsula in Northern Europe. Sweden borders with Norway and Finland and is connected to Denmark by a bridge-tunnel across the Öresund....

 branch of Save the Children
Save the Children
Save the Children is an internationally active non-governmental organization that enforces children's rights, provides relief and helps support children in developing countries...

 estimated that, "23,600 to 29,900 children required medical treatment for their beating injuries in the first two years of the intifada", one third of whom were children under the age of ten years old.

Intra-communal violence


Between 1987-1992, Palestinians killed more than 1,100 other Palestinians. During the first 18 months of the conflict, Palestinians accused of collaborating with Israel were frequently targeted. By 1990, the pace of Palestinian intra-violence grew exponentially. The Shin Bet recruited hundreds of Palestinians at this point, many of whom had close ties to Hamas and Islamic Jihad. The lawlessness of the West Bank and Gaza Strip promoted a climate of fear and violence for ordinary Palestinians.

According to the American foreign policy analyst Mitchell Bard
Mitchell Bard
Mitchell Geoffrey Bard is an American foreign policy analyst, editor and author who specializes in U.S.-Middle East policy. He is the Executive Director of the non-profit American-Israeli Cooperative Enterprise , and the director of the Jewish Virtual Library.-Education:Bard received his B.A...

, Palestinian death squads killed hundreds of Palestinians, often in open areas to send a message to Palestinians who thought about joining the Shin Bet. Palestinians accused of informing for Israel had no right to defend themselves publicly, and many were lynched for refusing to join protests or resistance movements.

The PLO defended the killing of Arabs accused of collaboration with Israel. Yasser Arafat
Yasser Arafat
Mohammed Yasser Abdel Rahman Abdel Raouf Arafat al-Qudwa al-Husseini , popularly known as Yasser Arafat or by his kunya Abu Ammar , was a Palestinian leader and a Laureate of the Nobel Prize. He was Chairman of the Palestine Liberation Organization , President of the Palestinian National Authority...

, leader of the Palestinian Liberation Organization at the time, personally delegated the authority to carry out executions of Palestinians.

Eventually, the PLO began to call for an end to the violence, but murders by its members and rivals continued. From 1989-1992, this intrafada claimed the lives of nearly 1,000 Palestinians. Some historians have drawn parallels to the intra-Palestinian violence with the War of the Camps
War of the camps
The War of the Camps was a subconflict within the 1984–89 phase of the Lebanese Civil War, in which Palestinian refugee camps were besieged by the Shi'ite Amal militia....

 during the 1982 Lebanon War, and the 1930s Arab revolt.

By the end of the first intifada, which began in December 1987, the number of Palestinians murdered by their fellow Palestinians exceeded the number of Palestinians who died in clashes with Israeli soldiers. Yasser Arafat's PLO officially executed 118 Palestinians who were thought to be collaborating with Israel. By the end of the first intifada, nearly 1,000 Palestinians had died by the hand of their own people.

By June 1990, according to Benny Morris
Benny Morris
Benny Morris is professor of History in the Middle East Studies department of Ben-Gurion University of the Negev in the city of Be'er Sheva, Israel...

, "[T]he Intifada seemed to have lost direction. A symptom of the PLO's frustration was the great increase in the killing of suspected collaborators; in 1991 the Israelis killed more Palestinians - about 100 - about 150." Attempts at the peace process in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict
Peace process in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict
The peace process in the Israeli–Palestinian conflict has taken shape over the years, despite the ongoing violence in the Middle East and an "all or nothing" attitude about a lasting peace, "which prevailed for most of the twentieth century"...

 were made at the Madrid Conference of 1991
Madrid Conference of 1991
The Madrid Conference was hosted by the government of Spain and co-sponsored by the USA and the USSR. It convened on October 30, 1991 and lasted for three days. It was an early attempt by the international community to start a peace process through negotiations involving Israel and the Palestinians...

.

Other notable events


On April 19, 1988, a leader of the PLO, Abu Jihad
Abu Jihad
Khalil Ibrahim al-Wazir , also known by his kunya "Abu Jihad" , was a Palestinian military leader and founder of the secular nationalist party Fatah...

, was assassinated in Tunis
Tunis
Tunis is the capital of both the Tunisian Republic and the Tunis Governorate. It is Tunisia's largest city, with a population of 728,453 as of 2004; the greater metropolitan area holds some 2,412,500 inhabitants....

. During the rioting that followed, about 16 Palestinians were killed. In November 1988 and October 1989, the United Nations General Assembly
United Nations General Assembly
For two articles dealing with membership in the General Assembly, see:* General Assembly members* General Assembly observersThe United Nations General Assembly is one of the five principal organs of the United Nations and the only one in which all member nations have equal representation...

 passed resolutions condemning Israel. In June of that year, the Arab League
Arab League
The Arab League , officially called the League of Arab States , is a regional organisation of Arab states in North and Northeast Africa, and Southwest Asia . It was formed in Cairo on 22 March 1945 with six members: Egypt, Iraq, Transjordan , Lebanon, Saudi Arabia, and Syria. Yemen joined as a...

 agreed to support the intifada financially at the 1988 Arab League summit
1988 Arab League summit
The 1988 Arab League summit was held in June in Algiers as the seventeenth Arab League Summit. The focus of the conference was the First Intifada, the uprising of the Palestinians and surge of Palestinian terrorism against the State of Israel. The Arab states resolved to support the intifada...

. The Arab League reaffirmed its financial support in the 1989 summit.

In 1989, local committees in Beit Sahour initiated a nonviolence
Nonviolence
Nonviolence has two meanings. It can refer, first, to a general philosophy of abstention from violence because of moral or religious principle It can refer to the behaviour of people using nonviolent action Nonviolence has two (closely related) meanings. (1) It can refer, first, to a general...

 movement to withhold taxes, taking up the slogan "No Taxation Without Representation
No taxation without representation
"No taxation without representation" is a slogan originating during the 1750s and 1760s that summarized a primary grievance of the British colonists in the Thirteen Colonies, which was one of the major causes of the American Revolution...

". Israeli defense minister Yitzhak Rabin
Yitzhak Rabin
' was an Israeli politician, statesman and general. He was the fifth Prime Minister of Israel, serving two terms in office, 1974–77 and 1992 until his assassination in 1995....

's response was: "We will teach them there is a price for refusing the laws of Israel." When time in prison did not stop the activists, Israel crushed the boycott by imposing heavy fines and seizing and disposing of equipment, furnishings, and goods from local stores, factories and homes.

The Israeli state apparatus carried out contradictory and conflicting policies that injured Israel's own interests, such as the closing of educational establishments (putting more youths onto the streets) and issuing the Shin Bet list of collaborators. Suicide bombings by Palestinian militants started on April 16, 1993 with the Mehola Junction bombing
Mehola Junction bombing
The Mehola Junction bombing was the first suicide car bomb attack carried out by Palestinian militants and took place on April 16, 1993....

, carried at the end of the Intifada.

Outcomes


The intifada was neither a military nor a guerrilla
Guerrilla warfare
Guerrilla warfare is a form of irregular warfare and refers to conflicts in which a small group of combatants including, but not limited to, armed civilians use military tactics, such as ambushes, sabotage, raids, the element of surprise, and extraordinary mobility to harass a larger and...

 conflict. The PLO - which had limited control of the situation - never expected the uprising to make any direct gains against the Israeli state, as it was a grassroots, mass movement and not their venture. However, the Intifada did produce a number of results that Palestinians considered positive:
  • By engaging the Israelis directly, rather than relying on the authority or the assistance of neighboring Arab states, Palestinians were able to demonstrate their identity as a separate nation worthy of self-determination.
  • The First Intifada marked the end of the Israeli discussion of a "Jordanian solution" to merge the Palestinian territories with Jordan.
  • It broke the image of Jerusalem as a united, Israeli city.
  • The failure of the "Iron Fist" policy, Israel's deteriorating international image and Jordan cutting legal and administrative ties to the West Bank and the U.S.'s recognition of the PLO as the representative of the Palestinian people forced Rabin to seek an end the violence though negotiation and dialogue with the PLO.
  • According to Avi Shlaim
    Avi Shlaim
    Avi Shlaim FBA is a British/Israeli historian. He is a professor of International Relations at the University of Oxford and a fellow of the British Academy.Shlaim is especially well known as a historian of the Arab-Israeli conflict...

    , the Israeli countermeasures (particularly during the earlier years of the Intifada) resulted in international attention to the Palestinians' cause.
  • The Palestinians showed for the first time that there were two sides to the Israel-Palestine issue.
  • Many American
    United States
    The United States of America is a federal constitutional republic comprising fifty states and a federal district...

     media outlets openly criticized Israel in a way that they had not before.
  • The success of the Intifada gave Arafat and his followers the confidence they needed to moderate their political programme: At the meeting of the Palestine National Council in Algiers in mid-November 1988, Arafat won a majority for the historic decision to recognise Israel's legitimacy; to accept all the relevant UN resolutions going back to 29 November 1947; and to adopt the principle of a two-state solution
    Two-state solution
    The two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict is the consensus solution that is currently under discussion by the key parties to the conflict, most recently at the Annapolis Conference in November 2007...

    .
  • Criticism of Israel came from the United Nations
    United Nations
    The United Nations is an international organization whose stated aims are facilitating cooperation in international law, international security, economic development, social progress, human rights, and achievement of world peace...

    , the European Community and the United States as well as the Arab states - which during the 1980s were concentrated on the Iran–Iraq War.
  • The European Community (later European Union
    European Union
    The European Union is an economic and political union of 27 independent member states which are located primarily in Europe. The EU traces its origins from the European Coal and Steel Community and the European Economic Community , formed by six countries in 1958...

    ) became an important economic contributor towards the nascent Palestinian Authority.
  • The Intifada empowered Palestinians to enter negotiations which lead to the Madrid Conference
    Madrid Conference of 1991
    The Madrid Conference was hosted by the government of Spain and co-sponsored by the USA and the USSR. It convened on October 30, 1991 and lasted for three days. It was an early attempt by the international community to start a peace process through negotiations involving Israel and the Palestinians...

     and the Oslo Accords
    Oslo Accords
    The Oslo Accords, officially called the Declaration of Principles on Interim Self-Government Arrangements or Declaration of Principles , was an attempt to resolve the ongoing Palestinian-Israeli conflict...

    .
  • The uprising can be linked to the Madrid Conference, and thereby to the return of the Palestinian Liberation Organization from their Tunisian exile.
  • The Intifada exposed many problems with the IDF's conduct in the operative and tactical fields, and also the general problem of Israel's prolonged control of the West Bank and Gaza strip. These problems were noticed and widely criticized, in international forums.

However, the impact on the services sector, including the important Israeli tourist industry, was notably negative.

See also

  • Second Intifada
  • Sumud
    Sumud
    Sumud meaning "steadfastness" or "steadfast perseverance" is an ideological theme and political strategy that first emerged among the Palestinian people through the experience of the dialectic of oppression and resistance in the wake of the Six-day war...

  • 1990 Temple Mount riots
    1990 Temple Mount riots
    The 1990 Temple Mount riots, also known as Black Monday or the Al Aqsa Massacre, was an event that took place in Al-Aqsa Mosque, Jerusalem at 10:30 am on Monday, 8 October, 1990 before Zuhr prayer during the third year of the first intifada. They began after a decision by the Temple Mount Faithful...

  • List of modern conflicts in the Middle East

External links