That is when Israel declared independence?

Were the Jews hungry for land and started kicking Arabs out, or did the Arabs attack first, or is it sort of a mixed bag?

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    Such questions are impossible to answer. Especially in Middle East. – quant_dev May 13 '12 at 20:57
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    @quant_dev: I can't agree; this question isn't impossible to answer at all. Broader causes are often hard to pin down, but this question doesn't require them - it's asking specifically about the 1948 war, which is a pretty clear case. – Tynam Jun 7 '12 at 10:22

In 1948, the Arabs attacked first. A few hours after Israel became an independent country, most of the Arab countries of the region invaded.

But that's just the 1948 answer.

Local Arab and Jewish militia forces had been clashing for years. A few months earlier (in 1947) bombings and shootings had increased to the level of a civil war. Jews were being driven out of their homes throughout the Arab world, then the Arabs were fleeing their homes in Israel during the '48 war. Whose fault it all was depends entirely on who you ask.

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    "Whose fault it all was" boils down heavily to Britain, whose selfish and clumsy missteps in the region did a lot to finish the previous many-centuries of Muslim/Jewish coexistence. – Tynam Jun 7 '12 at 10:17
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    I think this answer would be much better if it included sources and a timeline. And who are the Arabs? And why starting at the precise moment when Israel declared independence (though that may be the fault of the question to begin with)? – Olivier May 2 '14 at 9:43
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    @Olivier, you're right about sources. But the other points you raise are problems with the question, rather than the answer: who the Arabs are, and why starting at Israel's independence. – Joe May 2 '14 at 18:52
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    by the time of declaration of the state of Israel, Zionist forces were already occupying/conquering parts of the UN proposed partition Arab state. The slide into civil war and various actions in 1948 any statement that action X started the war is pretty contestable. – pugsville Jun 3 '14 at 5:50
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    Yeah someday when I've got a lot of time. 1948 is more complex than the Arabs just attacked, and the lumping all the Arab states and the locals together into "the Arabs" is too simplistic. The various Arab states had their own agendas, divergent form the local Palestinians interests, Jordan essential war aim was to annex the proposed Arab partition state rather than invade Israel. – pugsville Jun 3 '14 at 6:37

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