On March 4th Dr. Martin Bunton, Associate Professor, UVic Dept. of History, took us through the modern historical basis of the Palestinian – Israeli conflict. In doing so he has helped us understand why peace in this region has been so elusive. Dr. Bunton is the author of The Palestinian – Israeli Conflict, Very Short Introduction #359, part of a series published by Oxford University Press in which he argues against a religious or ancient historical cause for the modern conflict. At its essence he sees a struggle between two nations over land. That struggle has, and continues to, involve many nations. Dr. Bunton recognized that the complexity of the conflict throughout successive decades can be divided into twenty-year segments. Each segment has been shaped by a historical milestone within the context of geopolitics and world wars including the 1897 Basel Congress, the 1917 Balfour Declaration and British occupation of Palestine, and the 1947 UN Partition Plan and the war for Palestine.