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History As It Happens

May 21, 2024

In an essay for Foreign Affairs, the Israeli historian Tom Segev argues that a peaceful resolution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict is impossible. As early as 1919, the future prime minister David Ben-Gurion observed that both nations' competing claims to the land created an unbridgeable abyss. In this episode, Segev traces the origins of today's war to the era of the British mandate. By facilitating the creation of a Jewish homeland in what was then an Arab-majority country, the British laid the groundwork for decades of bloodshed and grievances. (Foreign Affairs is the official publication of the Council on Foreign Relations).