Module Identifier IP31320  
Academic Year 2006/2007  
Co-ordinator Mr James R Vaughan  
Semester Semester 2  
Course delivery Lecture   18 x 1-hour lectures  
  Seminars / Tutorials   5 x 2-hour seminars  
Assessment TypeAssessment Length/DetailsProportion
Semester Exam2 Hours Examination  60%
Semester Assessment 1 x 2,500 word essay  40%
Semester Assessment Students may, subject to Faculty approval, have the opportunity to resit this module. For further clarification please contact the Academic Administrator in the Department of International Politics. 

Learning outcomes

On completion of this module, students should be able to:

1. Explain the Origins of the Arab-Israel dispute in the first half of the 20th century;

2. Evaluate the emergence of the modern Zionist movement;

3. Discuss and analyse key political developments in Israel and the Arab states after 1948;

4. Demonstrate awareness of the core elements of the political dispute between Israel and the Palestinians;

5. Demonstrate awareness of the core elements of the political dispute between Israel and the Arab States;

6. Analyse and evaluate developments in Israeli strategic thinking after 1948;

7. Discuss the central strategic and military elements of the 5 major Arab-Israeli Wars between 1948 and 1982;

8. Evaluate and explain the political and strategic consequences of the 5 major Arab-Israeli Wars between 1948 and 1982;

9. Display through discussion and written work an awareness of the key elements of the chief bids to achieve a peace settlement between Israel and the Arabs since 1948;

10. Locate the Arab-Israeli wars within their broader international context in the second half of the 20th century.


This module adds to Departmental provision in the area of International History and Military History with a particular focus on the political and military dimensions of the Arab-Israel dispute in the second half of the 20th century. It complements existing history modules and allows interested students to gain specialist historical knowledge about one of the most contentious and emotive issues in contemporary international politics.

Brief description

This module aims to provide students with an understanding of the course of Arab-Israeli conflict and peacemaking from the origins and establishment of the state of Israel in 1948 through to the collapse of the 'Oslo' peace process of the 1990s. Particular attention is paid to the major Arab-Israeli wars of 1948, 1956, 1967, 1973 and 1982. Students will be encouraged to examine and interpret these conflicts in their broader regional and international context.


Lecture Programme

Introduction: the Arab-Israeli Wars

Part I. 'One Land, Two Peoples': Zionism & the Palestine Question
1. 'Next Year in Jerusalem': Zionism in Theory & Practice
2. 'Revolution Until Victory': the Palestinian National Movement
3. Britain, the Palestine Mandate & the Origins of the Arab-Israel Dispute

Part II. The Arab-Israeli Wars
4. Israel's 'War of Independence'
5. Organising for War: the IDF and its Enemies
6. The Suez-Sinai War
7. The 'Six Day War'
8. The War of Attrition
9. The 'Yom Kippur War'
10. 'Peace for Galilee': War in the Lebanon
11. The War of the Fedayeen: Israel & the Palestinian Guerrillas

Part III. World Politics & the Arab-Israel Dispute
12. 'A Special Relationship?' Israel & the United States
13. Europe & the Arab-Israel Dispute
14. The Soviet Union & the Arab Cause
15. The United Nations & the Arab-Israel Dispute

Part IV. Peacemaking
16. 'Breakthrough': Camp David & the Egyptian-Israeli Peace Treaty
17. The Rise and Fall of the Peace Process

Seminar Programme

1. Zionism & the Battle For '1948'
2. War and Nationalism in the Age of Nasser, 1952-70
3. War & Peace With Egypt, 1973-80
4. The Northern Front: Israel, Syria & Lebanon after 1973
5. World Politics & the Arab-Israel Dispute

Module Skills

Problem_solving Independent project work and problem solving will be one of the central goals of the module; the submission of an essay will require that the student develops independent research skills as well as problem solving skills. The need to research and prepare seminar presentations will also enable the student to develop independent project skills. The ability of students to solve problems will be developed and assessed by asking them to: adopt differing points of view; organize data and estimate an answer to the problem; consider extreme cases; reason logically; construct theoretical models; consider similar cases; look for patterns; divide issues into smaller problems. A final examination will ensure that an assessment of the student's ability to work alone can be undertaken.  
Research skills The submission of an essay will reflect the independent research skills of the student. The need to locate appropriate research resources and write up the results will also facilitate research skills. Research preparation for a seminar presentation will also enable the student to develop independent project skills. A final examination will ensure that an assessment of the student's ability to work alone can be undertaken.  
Communication Students will learn how to present their ideas both verbally and in writing and how to assert themselves to advantage. They will understand the importance of information and clear communication and how to exploit these. They will know how to use the many sources of information available and how to use the most appropriate form of communication to the best advantage. They will learn to be clear and direct in their and to be direct about aims and objectives. They will learn to consider only that which is relevant to the topic, focus and objectives of their argument or discussion. Seminars will be run in groups where oral discussion and presentations will form the main medium of teaching and the emphasis throughout the module will be on student participation and communication.  
Improving own Learning and Performance The module aims to promote self-management but within a context of assistance from both the convenor and the fellow students alike. Students will be expected to improve their own learning and performance by undertaking their own research and to exercise their own initiative, including searching for sources, compiling reading lists, and deciding (under guidance) the direction of their essay and presentation topics. The need to conduct a seminar presentation and to meet an essay deadline will focus students' attention on the need to manage their time and opportunity resources well.  
Team work Seminars will consist in part of small-group discussion where students will be obliged to discuss as a group the core issues related to seminar topics. Such class room debates and discussions are a vital component of the module.  
Information Technology Students will be expected to submit their work in word-processed format. Also, students will be encouraged to search for sources of information on the web, as well as seeking sources through electronic information sources (such as Web of Science and OCLC).  
Personal Development and Career planning The discussions in particular will help to develop students' verbal and presentation skills. Learning about the process of planning an essay and a presentation, framing the parameters of the projects, honing and developing the projects and seeing through to completion will contribute towards their portfolio of transferable skills.  
Subject Specific Skills Students have the opportunity to develop, practice and test a wide range of subject specific skills that help them to understand, conceptualise and evaluate examples and ideas on the module. These subject specific skills include: - Collect and understand a wide range of data relating to the module - Ability to evaluate competing perspectives - Demonstrate subject specific research techniques - Apply a range of methodologies to complex political problems  


This module is at CQFW Level 6