When the UN voted for the formation of the state of Israel, the Arab world objected; this book excerpt examines how Israel defended itself from Arab nations and was able to establish the state of Israel.


This article is a chapter (The 1948 Palestine War), from the book ‘Modern Egypt: The Formation of a Nation-state’ by Arthur Goldschmidt Jr., which makes the following points:

  • Egypt was a troubled country between 1945 and 1952.
  • Its leader, King Faruq, was corrupt and an ineffective leader.
  • His family owned around 10% of Egypt’s land.
  • The British had tried to depose him.
  • Ninety per cent of the population suffered from poverty, illiteracy, endemic diseases and a sense of hopelessness.
  • The US urged an Egyptian New Deal.
  • The British Mandate over Palestine ended in May 1948.
  • The State of Israel was declared at the same time.
  • The Arab League resolved to go to war against Israel.
  • Faruq committed the Egyptian Army to fight in the 1948 Palestine War to prevent Amir Abdallah of Transjordan from controlling Palestine if the Arabs won.
  • The Egyptian general staff warned that the Army was so unprepared it even had to borrow road maps of Palestine.
  • Faruq made the strategic decisions but was compromised by his mistress passing details to Israel.
  • There were no plans to resupply Egyptian forces,
  • Army leadership regarded it as a political war.
  • There was no coordination between Arab forces.
  • Israel defeated the Arab armies, including Egypt.


Recent Runway Posts related to this topic:
References from the Web:
Source Information: