Israel: Birth of a State This segment of the landmark documentary, The Jewish Americans tells the story of the establishment of the Jewish State and American Jewish efforts to make a homeland in Israel a reality. After World War II, the British found themselves in an increasingly precarious position in Palestine. World opinion favored the establishment of a Jewish state, or at least a sanctuary for the Jewish refugees from the Holocaust, in Palestine. Arab nationalists demanded a cessation of Jewish immigration to the region. Britain tried desperately, and ultimately unsuccessfully, to maintain control of this strategically important territory. In February 1947,Britain announced its intention to cede control of Palestine to the United Nations. The United Nations, in November 1947, passed a plan to partition Palestine into an Arab state and a Jewish state. The partition plan directed Britain to quit Palestine by August 1948. The plan was accepted by the Jews, rejected by the Arabs, and met with skepticism by the British. From November 1947 until their ultimate departure from the region in May 1948, Britain did little to prepare either party for independence as the British were convinced that no Jewish state could possible endure in the face of Arab armed forces that had pledged to attack upon the declaration of a Jewish state. Meanwhile, the Jews moved ahead with plans for statehood, establishing a provisional government under the leadership of David Ben Gurion in March <b>...</b>
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