See also: Palestinian Liberation Organization
The PLO was founded in 1964 upon the Palestine National Council’s (PNC) election of a 15 member executive committee lead by Ahmad Shuqayri. The main objective of the PLO was to bring about "the elimination of Israel and the restoration of Palestine to the Palestinians”

The two most powerful factions within the PLO are al-Fatah (translated "victory") and the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP), however there are many auxiliary groups that make up the PLO such as the Democratic Front for the Liberation of Palestine (DFLP), the PFLP-General Command, and the Palestine Liberation Front (PLF).

Al-Fatah was founded by Yassir Arafat among others and has become the largest, most notbale body within the PLO.
The PFLP is a "marxist group dedicated to the overthrow of conservative Arab governments" that was founded by George Habash.
The DFLP is a further left offshoot of the PFLP lead by the Jordanian Nayif Hawatma
The PFLP-GC is an extreme left group backed by Syria and Iran
The PLF is headed by Abbu Abbas and is strongly backed by Syria

The PLO was responsible for the Battle of Karameh in March, 1968. The battle consisted of guerilla attacks into Israel from Jordan which resulted in the death of 21 Israelis and over 100 Paslestinains. The declaration of victory by Arafat, despite having suffered the majority ofhte casualties, increased his popularity and celebrity status.

Also based in Jordan, the War of Attrition from 1969-70 (including Black September) ultimately resulted in the PLO's explusion from Jordan.

In October 1970, the PLO was forced to relocate to southern Lebanon where they established a "state within a state." This movement greatly unnerved both the Israelis and the Maronite's which were in control of Lebanon and thus help bring about the Lebanese Civil War.

In 1982, the PLO is driven out of Lebanon by the Israelis and Maronites and has to relocate to a very distant Tunis from 1982-93. In 1993 the Oslo accords are signed resulting in mutual recognition between Israel and the PLO and a movement of PLO headquaters from Tunis to Ramallah in the West Bank

After the death of Arafat in 2004, Mahmoud Abbas becomes the leader of the PLO.

Fatah now only controls the West bank after losing 2007 elections to Hamas

Mattar, Philip. "Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO)." Encyclopedia of the Modern Middle East and North Africa. Ed. Philip ------- Mattar. Vol. 3. 2nded. New York: Macmillan Reference USA, 2004. 1772-1776. Gale Virtual Reference Library. Gale. -------Upper Arlington High School. 15 Sept. 2009 <>.

Nassar, Jamal R. "Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO)." World Book Advanced. World Book, 2009. Web. 15 Sept. 2009.