As powerful as electronic sources are, not everything is on-line. Print sources often have easier-to-find primary documents. For historical topics, print materials often provide more depth. Therefore, don't be afraid to think print!
WORKS TO KNOW:
Fatah: A Palestinian militant group and political party dedicated to the establishment of an independent Palestinian state.
Fatwa: A statement of religious law issued by Islamic clerics.
Fundamentalism: A movement stressing adherence to a strict or literal interpretation of religious principles.
Haganah: The underground defense force of Zionists in Palestine from 1920 to 1948. It became the basis for the Israeli army.
Hamas: A Palestinian Islamic fundamentalist group and political party operating primarily in the West Bank and the Gaza Strip with the goal of establishing a Palestinian state and opposing the existence of Israel. It has been labeled a terrorist organization by several countries.
Hezbollah: A Shiite militant group and political party based in Lebanon.
Islamism: A fundamentalist movement characterized by the belief that Islam should provide the basis for the political, social, and cultural life in Muslim nations.
Jihad: An armed struggle against unbelievers, in defense of Islam; often interpreted to mean holy war. The term also refers to the spiritual struggle of Muslims against sin.
Martyr: A person who dies for his or her religion.
Muslim Brotherhood: An Islamic fundamentalist group organized in opposition to Western influence and in support of Islamic principles.
Occupied territories: The lands under the political and military control of Israel, especially the West Bank and the Gaza Strip.
Palestine: A historical region in the Middle East on the eastern shore of the Mediterranean Sea, comprising parts of present-day Israel and Jordan.
Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO): A political and military organization formed to unite various Palestinian Arab groups with the goal of establishing an independent Palestinian state.
Palestinian Authority (PA): The recognized governing institution for Palestinians in the West Bank and the Gaza Strip, established in 1993. Also known as the Palestinian National Authority.
Palestinians: An Arab people whose ancestors lived in the historical region of Palestine and who continue to lay claim to that land.
Sharia: A system of Islamic law based on the Koran. Sharia attempts to create the perfect social order, based on God's will and justice, and covers a wide range of human activities, including acts of religious worship, the law of contracts and obligations, personal status law, and public law.
Shiites: Followers of the Shia branch of Islam. Shiites believe that only direct descendants of the prophet Muhammad are qualified to lead the Islamic faith.
Suicide bombing: An attack intended to kill others and cause widespread damage, carried about by someone who does not hope to survive the attack.
Sunnis: Followers of the Sunni branch of Islam. Sunnis believe that elected officials, regardless of their heritage, are qualified to lead the Islamic faith.
Weapons of mass destruction: Any nuclear, chemical, or biological weapons capable of killing or injuring great numbers of people.