USGS identifies potential giant oil and gas fields in Israel/PalestineApril 9, 2010
Analysis by the experts at the US Geological Survey indicates the potential for ultimately recoverable reserves of 1.7 billion barrels of oil and 122 trillion cubic feet of natural gas in the eastern Mediterranean region.
One cannot help but notice how much of this resource straddles the border of Israel and Palestinian Authority territory, primarily Gaza but also one gas field on the border of the West Bank. An optimist would say this presents the opportunity for economic cooperation between the two sides that could lead to a wider understanding. A cynic would say this report just throws gas on the fire. A lot of gas.
The one thing the Israel/Palestine conflict has lacked over the decades is a tussle over petroleum assets. Although the region is rich in oil and gas resources, Israel, Gaza and the West Bank have been mostly barren, as this recent (2004) map of oil and gas fields from M.K. Horn illustrates.
I tend to lean toward the cynical assessment of the political ramifications of this. But the great thing about human activity is that it always surprises you, one way or the other.