The World in Focus series provides an up-to-date view of individual countries around the world. Including discussion of the major challenges facing each country now and in the future. These books give a real insight into life in every part of the globe. Israel is located in a place where three continents - Africa, Asia and Europe - meet, and its landscape is a diverse mixture of these three continents, with sandy coastlines, fertile valleys, mountains, lakes and deserts. Israel's culture also reflects this fusion of different continents. Israel was founded in 1948 as a Jewish state - a place where Jews from all parts of the world were encouraged to settle. The country's various communities have carried their customs and traditions from many places. Today, four-fifths of Israel's population are Jewish. Almost all non-Jewish Israelis are Palestinian Arabs, and most of them are Muslims. The current conflict between Israel and the Palestinian Arabs is essentially a dispute about land and who controls it. But mixed in with this is a religious clash between Jews and Muslims. A final settlement between Israel and the Palestinians remains elusive.
Alex Woolf studied history at Essex University, and has written and edited many educational titles for young people.