The 1948 War of Independence presents a very crucial period in the history of Israel. The war allowed Israel to receive recognition as a state from the two world superpowers at the time, USA and Soviet Union. The UN Partition Plan that created the Israeli state received plenty of opposition from the Arabs through Iraq, Lebanon, Syria, Transjordan and Egypt. Generally, members of the Arab League opposed the partition plan that created the Jewish state.
The opposition by the Arabs forced them into going into war with the Israelis, thus marking the First Arab-Israeli War. The Arabs went on the offensive from the beginning predominantly because of the heavy military equipment that they had at their disposal. Despite an arms embargo that the British initiated through the Resolution 50 of the UN Security Council, Israel received a cache of vital military hardware from the Czechoslovakia.
At the conclusion of the 1948 War of Independence, the Haganah transformed itself into the Israel Defense Forces or IDF. The end of the war also marked a period of ceasing operations for the Lehi, Etzel and Palmach that became one with the IDF. The end of the war was also crucial for other reasons. All the Jewish immigrants in other countries took off on a long journey of returning to Israel and joined the IDF later.
Initially during the 1948 War of Independence, Israel lost a substantial amount of its territory to the Arabs. On the other hand, the tide turned on Israel’s favor as they saw a huge upturn in fortunes and captured more territories from the Arabs. The upturn in favor took place from July 1948. Some of the land that Israel conquered included part of the territory that was proposed for the Arab state.
By November 1948, the Israelis, Lebanese and Syrians put a number of ceasefires in place. One result of the 1948 War of Independence is that it saw the emergence of permanent ceasefire when Israelis, Syrians, Jordanians, Lebanese and Egyptians signed several armistices. However, the warring countries never signed any peace agreement. The end of the war also saw the establishment of the new borders for the Jewish nation – that became known as Green Line.
The end of the 1948 War of Independence also saw a number of ceasefire declarations signed between the warring nations. The ceasefire declaration also convinced Britain to release close to 2,000 detainees from Israel it was holding in Cyprus and recognize the new state of Israel. On the other hand, Israel had to wait until May 1949 to enjoy admission as the latest member of the United Nations.
Finally, the conclusion of the 1948 War of Independence paved the way for Israel to hold its first elections during which Ben Gurion was elected as the nation’s Prime Minister. Mapai and Mapam – two of the country’s Socialist-Zionist parties – won the most seats during the Jewish nation’s first ever elections. However, no party enjoyed outright majority after the elections thus leading to the appointment of Ben Gurion (the leader of Mapai) as the country’s Prime Minister.