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Jerri Miller

Assignment: Write about any controversial issue


My Topic: The conflict between Israelis and the Palestinians and America’s view on it.

Note: Because the complete version of this essay is nine pages long, this is the abridged copy to
give you just a sample of my writing.

The ongoing feud between the Palestinians and Israelis has developed throughout the

twentieth century and has increasingly gotten worse. Although there has always been tension

between these groups of people, Israel’s independence in 1948 caused a high-end war which has

caused many lives to be taken. This war began because Palestinians would not recognize Israel as

a state and is still doing what they can to gain control of this piece of land. Israel is fighting to keep

the Palestinians off its land to control peace among the Israeli citizens and to prevent any fighting.

Today, the war progresses causing destruction to the Gaza strip and fear all throughout Israel and

Gaza. The United States needs to step in to restore the peace in Israel. America’s support is

important due to Israel’s few allies; therefore, America should provide food, aid and support for a

peace treaty. The conflict between Israel and the Palestinians has resulted in a disastrous war in

Gaza and there needs to be a resolution before any more people get injured. The American policy

regarding the crisis in the Middle East must focus on creating a peaceful solution, such as a

division of the land to accommodate for all.

After Israel gained independence in 1948, a series of battles between the Palestinians and

Israelis were fought to protect Palestine as either an Arab or Jewish homeland. The day after the

state of Israel was proclaimed, five Arab states invaded Israel. In result, the Israel Defense Force

was created and Israel became the 59th member of the United Nations. The Israel Defense Force

fought two very important battles including the Six-Day war in 1967 and the Yom Kippur War in

1973. There were many others, but these two highlight the importance and struggling efforts from

both sides to win this everlasting war. On June 5, 1967, Israel attacked the Egyptian army and

destroyed its air force. “The Six-Day War that followed Israel's surprise attack ended with the

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Israeli’s army gaining control of Egypt's Sinai Peninsula, Syria's Golan Heights, and Jordan's West

Bank” (”What was the 1967 War?”). This war was very important because the capital city of

Israel, Jerusalem was finally united. It was also significant because it showed the strength of

Israel’s army. Next, Egypt and Syria’s retaliation was fought during what Israelis call, the Yom

Kippur War. The Palestinians call this the Ramadan War. Egypt and Syria both surprised attacked

Israel from two different places: the Suez Canal and the Golan Heights. This war marked

significance for the Israelis because “Israel's military prowess had once again been demonstrated

and had perhaps definitively persuaded the Arab leaders that their foe could not be defeated, let

alone destroyed, in battle” (”What was the outcome of the War of 1973?”). Although Israel had

won the battles in 1948, 1956, and 1967, this war was different. This was the first time Israel was

willing to give up large pieces of land for peace. Following this, a peace treaty was signed between

Egypt and Israel to mark a possibility for peace in the Middle East in the future. Years later, the

Gaza Strip was given to the Palestinians. A self-government was set up and terrorist acts such as

kidnapping Israeli soldiers and missile attacks began and still continue today. In 2007, Hamas took

over the political power in Gaza and peace between Arabs and Israelis remained inexistent.

Since Israel first became a state, America has been very involved and supportive politically,

economically and militarily. This alliance has benefited both states. Israel is dependent on America

for the military and economic benefits, while America is competing for many resources in the

Middle East. America has been very loyal to Israel in the past by recognizing Israel as a state, only

minutes after it was officially created and by supporting it in 1951 by providing $65 million to

Israel to help take in survivors from the Holocaust. Another example is that the United Nations has

been generally hostile to Israel and often the United States has been its only defender. Israel has

been thankful for this and has returned the favor by voting with America on virtually all issues.

Furthermore, during Ronald Reagan’s second term as president, America strengthened its ties with

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Israel by maintaining an annual aid of three billion dollars and implemented a Free Trade

Agreement in 1985. The Reagan Administration was characterized as being the “most pro-Israel

ever” (Clyde R. Mark). During the Clinton Administration from 1993-2001, President Clinton

witnessed the Jordan-Israel peace treaty signing and the Interim Agreement in 1995, which was an

attempt to establish peace and create a new relationship between the Palestinians and Israelis.

Clinton also attended the funeral of assassinated Prime Minister Yitzhaq Rabin in 1995.

Throughout this time, America gave Israel money to aid them throughout the terrorist activity that

existed. Today should be no different. America needs to give more aid, but also devise up a

compromise to limit the hostility. The conflict between Israel and the Palestinians is causing

damage to both sides and with America’s help, a peace treaty is possible.

The conflict in Gaza has caused thousands of deaths and an immense amount of destruction

in both the Gaza Strip and in Israel. The disagreements between these two groups have created a

war causing harm to everyone in the area. Gaza City is the largest Palestinian city with about a half

a million people. Currently, Gaza is lead by Hamas, the political organization, which is located in

Gaza City along with many of its supporters. This is a big reason why Israel is aiming in this

specific town: to destroy the government of Hamas. Furthermore, Israel is also trying to shut down

the smuggling tunnels that run through Gaza’s southern border with Egypt. On May 6, 2009, Israel

warplanes bombed three of these smuggling tunnels. These tunnels have been used to “smuggle

food, clothing and other essential goods into the Palestinian territory ever since Israel enforced a

blockade on the Gaza Strip after Hamas came to power in June 2007” (Yaakov Lappin). Although

Israel is causing a lot of destruction in the Gaza Strip, Hamas is also acting hostile towards Israel.

Hamas is aiming for any city in Israel, mainly Netivot, Sderot, Ashkelon and Ashdod, where they

could harm the most amount of citizens. During the second half of 2008, there was a six month

truce to try to reduce the shootings, but both sides violated it. When the truce officially ended on

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December 19, 2008, Israel dropped large bombs on government buildings and Hamas started

shooting rockets more frequently at Israel. This continued for three weeks until another truce was

made. Although the fighting still exists, it is now not as dangerous as it was during that time.

Hospitals in Gaza are still overwhelmed by the amount of casualties and Palestinians in Gaza City

are still unable to leave their homes. Furthermore, electricity and water are not available in many

areas and food is scarce due to the blockade. Gaza City is extremely poor and because families are

large, it is common for extended family of over ten people to share a small apartment. In Israel, for

those three weeks, schools were closed in areas that were affected and citizens had to stay in bomb

shelters in case a rocket ever came close. Cities closer to the borderline are still at risk and the

alarm sounds fifteen seconds before a rocket hits, therefore, no one risks leaving the shelter. In

Ofakim and Be’er Sheva, the inhabitants have forty-five seconds to move to their shelters. It is

extremely frightening for all Palestinians and Israelis in or near Gaza. It is necessary to stop the

fighting to reduce the amount of casualties, damages and pain this war is causing people.

The United States and Israel have been allies since the birth of Israel. They have frequently

supported each other and it is now America’s duty to help Israel in this desperate time of need. In

cities such as Netivot, Sderot, Ashkelon and Ashdod, aid is very much needed. People are living

out of their safe houses to protect themselves from the possibility of rockets hitting them. The

warnings are sent out only fifteen seconds before the rocket hits; therefore living in their shelters is

the only possibility to survive. America should send food and medical aid to anyone in need of it.

Although the United States are allies with Israel, sending in troops would not benefit anyone.

American troops should not die over a war that is not theirs. This war needs to be resolved as

quickly as possible, so helping Israel fight it is not the answer. Destroying the Palestinians only

causes more hatred and does not solve any problems. America’s policy for this particular issue

should be to propose a peace treaty to benefit both groups of people. This treaty should propose

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that Jerusalem be a neutral city where both Arabs and Israelis can live. If needed, it can be divided

in half, but a unified capital would be stronger. Next, the Palestinians want more land. The Gaza

Strip which is currently under a blockade is very small and cannot hold the amount of people there.

If both groups of people cannot live peacefully among one another, as proven, the land must be

split in half in order to be fair to everyone. This country could be divided as it was in 1948. The

West Bank and the Gaza Strip would be controlled by Palestinians and the rest including Tel-Aviv,

Jaffa, Haifa, and the south would be controlled by Israelis. The best possible peace treaty would

consist of one united, piece of land in which anyone could live freely. If Palestinians and Jews

could learn to work together peacefully and respect one another, Israel would not have to be

divided at all. Unfortunately, until then, Israel should be divided. The American Policy regarding

the crisis in Gaza should prioritize peace above anything else.

The Israelis and Palestinians have been fighting for over sixty years for a piece of land

containing many historic sites, such as Jerusalem. The constant struggle by the Palestinians to gain

control of this land is causing destruction throughout the Gaza Strip and in parts of Israel. Innocent

people are being injured by Israeli bombings and Palestinian rockets. For that reason, a peace

treaty is imperative. Neither side is willing to compromise to appease the other’s desires, but land

needs to be given up or divided to make a peaceful resolution. America needs to facilitate with this

to ensure peace and safety in this area. Although most of Israel disapproves of relinquishing its

land, this will create a more peaceful atmosphere and hopefully in the future, Israel can be reunited

as one full country with Arabs and Israelis living peacefully among one another.

Note: The complete version of this essay includes the perspectives from the Israeli, Palestinian
and American government as well as the early history before Israel became a state.

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Rubric for Essay- out of 300 points:

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A Few Poems from my Creative Writing Classes:

MUSIC TELLS A STORY

So many keys, so many chords. So many rhythms and beats.


I play, letting my fingers go where they want to go.
Everything else is silent, still. I play to break
the stillness. I press harder now, with heart.
My fingers are moving quicker, moving back
and forth from right to left. Echoes ring in my ears.
My fingers won’t stop; they’re out of control
like my hands are detached from my body.
The music gets louder and louder as I bang on the keys.
My life is a total mess.

UPSIDE DOWN

Sliding down the mountain, I fall


into a wonderland where animal crackers
replace house pets and giant lollipops take
the place of trees. It rains Hershey kisses and
snows gumdrops. The air smells like
fresh chocolate all year round.
Truffles are scattered along the road instead
of rocks, and zebras run around in the city.
I wash my hands with chocolate syrup and
bathe in fondue. My graham cracker house
seems to crumble to pieces sometimes, but
I use taffy to glue it back together.
This upside down world feels more like home to me.

SECRETS

Her face started to turn red. Sweat


started to drip down. I walked over to
see if she was okay, but she closed her
eyes and walked the other way.