In 1887 a group of pioneers initiated a movement, known as the Aliyah (ascend), of return in the Holy Land. The Jews living for centuries widespread in Palestine started occupying Jerusalem, Hebron, Safad and Tabariya. As a consequence of the Aliyah, they -and those immigrants- established for 30 years kibbutzim.

The Isaac Ben Rafi self-defence units, employed in the urban ghettoes of Russia, improved their performance in Palestine, where the sword was used liberally while Zionist political activity matured. And thus, a second Aliyah stage -conducted by David Ben Gurion- turned to labour and defence in accordance with his succint philosophy: 'With blood and fire Judaism fell, by blood and fire it will be resurrected.'

Very soon the Aliyah considered that the settlements could serve as defence towers, provided the settlers were in the belief they were harassed. Such strategic objectives resulted in organized violence against the non-Jews, under the motto 'the plough and the sword', until they made off from the settlements.

In 1917 Prince Faysal promoted serious riots resulting in Aqaba ravage. Britain tried consequently to involve the Zionists in the battle, who in turn glimpsed a chance to convert themselves in the saviour conquerors. In 1929, however, a Palestinian revolution came over, and the British government had to restrict Jewish migration and brake their expansionist fidget in order to pacify the region.

The above factors and the rising Arab nationalism convinced the Jewish National Council that it was necessary to create an army capable of leading to the 'reconstruction of the Jewish state'. Violent tactics were largely employed to achieve such a purpose. The Arabs in turn, sized between the Zionist boost and imperialist policies, saw that there was no way except armed struggle.

In 1938 the British government published a report putting forward two ideas for partition: the former was the creation of a Jewish state in the Galilee region and Marj Ibn Amer Valley, and the latter the designation of a strip extending from Ras Naqoura to Tel Aviv. However, neither of the two proposals set off.

When 'the question of Palestine' was submitted to the UN in 1947 by an anglo-American committee, recommending that the country should remain under British mandate, the Zionists' answer was -as usual- guerrilla operations against the Arabs and Britain.

The final stage of the Aliyah was 'expansionism'. It results astounded that the number of Jews in Palestine incremented -along the period 1918 to 1939- from 10% to 32% of the total population, and the territory controlled by Jews expanded fourfold.

The state was formally declared in May 1948 and the military groups transformed into the Israeli Defence Force.

Now it is feasible to verify that such a driving force as a method to create a state fructified. Israelitish are fully armed, and serious purposes of giving back the occupied territories simply do not exist.

This write up is mostly based upon an article written by Galal Nassar in Al-Ahram Weekly Online (October,8-14, 1998, Issue No. 398)

Reading from the Torah during services, or reciting a blessing over such a reading. This is considered an honour, and is one of the primary rites of passage during a Bar Mitzvah.

The first aliyah of a day's reading is given to a kohein, the second to a Levite, and the subsequent aliyoth are given to people celebrating major life events, such as a marriage, a bar mitzvah, or the birth of a child.

Usage is a little odd; one makes aliyah, or is given an aliyah.

Pronounced ah-lee-AH. Plural is aliyoth.

As stated above, it can also refer to a person immigrating to Israel; it does not necessarily refer to a person belonging to the specific Aliyah movement mentioned above.

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