1. How Did Modern Day Israel Come Into Being?
The formation of modern-day Israel has its origins in Zionism, a 19th century nationalist movement that proposed a state for the Jewish community to call their own – Israel – which was then a part of the Ottoman Empire.
Earlier, the Jewish-Roman wars of the 1st and 2nd century AD had displaced the Jewish community from the territory of Israel. One of the flash points of this conflict was the Siege of Jerusalem by the Romans in 70 AD.
The Zionist movement to reclaim this territory gained currency in a backdrop where the Jewish community was facing growing persecution – starting from the 19th century and culminating in the horrific Holocaust under Germany’s Adolf Hitler. The persecution led to mass migration of Jews to Israel.
Austrian-Jewish journalist Theodor Herlz, said to be the father of modern Zionism, helped facilitate this mass Jewish influx into modern day Israel.