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Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Zionism: Facts You Should Know About Palestine up to 1948

Nadene Goldfoot
Jews had been in Judea and Israel 393 years before King Saul reigned in 884 BCE for 40 years.  They lost their land in 70 ACE when Rome overwhelmed them and many were carted off as slaves while lots were killed.  Some remained.  Jews have tried to live in all the parts of the world and suffered a great deal under Russia when they lived in the "Pale of Settlement".  They were enduring pograms, attacks of the surrounding communities that killed many of them.  Being solicited into the Russian army at age 12, and all sorts of hurtful measures were against them.  This was happening while the Dryfuss Affair, an example of anti-semitism in the French army,  went on in France.  The conclusion of Jews was that it was time to return to their home in the Middle East.  They had come so far away from it, and it was always in their prayers to return.  So after 2,000 years, they went back in groups of adventurous young men and women in the middle 1800's to join the remaining Jews there and built up Jerusalem and the rest of the land.  It was still a part of the Turkish Empire so they bought land from the Turkish Crown and from Arab landowners called effendi.  The land was then referred to as "Palestine," a name the Romans had given it and was then anglicized.  They had tried to erase the Jewish identity there. 

Between 1514 AD and circa 1850, the Arab population of this area stayed around 340,000.  The Arab population grew because of the building that the Jews were doing.  From 1855 to 1947 it was about 1,300,000.  This shows it had become 4 times larger in less than 100 years.  In working for the Jews, they were no longer serfs in the effendi-fellah (land-owner/serf)  lifestyle they had come from.  They were earning in one month what their fathers had earned in a year.  Their babies weren't dying and they were living under the same medical technology as the Jews so were living longer. 

Much of the land the Jews bought was either swampland or desert.  It hadn't been inhabited or used for as long as the Jews had been gone.  Jews had to use their modern agrarian techniques and their kop (head) to develop the land.  Because they were creating an oasis, a garden of Eden, Arab migrants by the hundreds and thousands came in seeking a better life.  To think that i pods or email had not yet been invented, and a telephone was a rarity, yet they heard the news quickly and rushed in. 

The success of the Jews caused some fear and anger in Arab leaders.  Here the Jews were SHARING with the Arabs.  What would that do to their empires?  Hajj Amin el Hussseini led an Islamic jihad of pogroms against the Jews in Palestine.  Out came the accusations and fairy tales to upset their new way of life. 

From 1919 to 1936 Arabs were attacking Jews violently while the British did just about nothing to stop it, and sometimes were helping it along.  Lord Earl Peel in 1936 inquired about the events and decided on partition.  He would give the Jews 15% of the lands they had previously bought that they had promised to them.  The Arabs would get the remaining 85%.  So, in 1922, Britain ceded all of the Palestine Mandate east of the Jordan River to the emir Abdullah which then became the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan.  They then had a majority Palestinian population and a law that no Jew could enter their land. 

In 1937 the Arabs were offered their own state on about 85% of British mandatory Palestine west of the Jordan River and they decided on war and terrorism instead.  From 1937 to 1939 the Arabs engaged in the "Great Arab Revolt" which the British crushed as WWII was just starting up. 

What were the Jews doing?  They continued buying more crown land from the British.  This was legal according to international law.  The British had the right to sell to the Jews.  By the end of WWII, Jews owned about 28% of what is today Israel, and and private Arab land ownership or British crown land made up the rest. 

At the war's end in 1945, Arab leaders again became violent as they had lost the II World War  and terrorized Jewish villages and the British.  Jews tried to remain peaceful and use the UN with a few reacting in kind against the British and Arabs.  The British gave up their balancing act and let the new UN in 1947 decide the problem.  November 29, 1947 saw the UN declare two states with Israel getting 55% of the land and Arabs getting 45%.  However, 60% of Israel's portion was the Negev desert, crown land deemed worthless and unpopulated.  How nice.  The plan  #181 also consisted of unwieldy boundaries based on land ownership and population densities of the two groups.  They were far from defensive. 

The Arabs were already members of the UN but did not abide by the rules.  They decided then and there to destroy Israel.  At the time, Israel had 605,000 Jews living there.  (This is a very special number, because Moses went into the land with 600,000). 

The Arabs lost this war and by losing, lost much of the land that the UN ad designated as the state of Palestine.  The remainder of the West Bank (Judea and Samaria) and the Gaza Strip was taken by others.  Egypt grabbed Gaza by illegal occupation  and Jordan illegally annexed the West Bank.  Both countries broke the laws of international law as well as UN resolutions 181 and 194.  At this time, "Palestinians" didn't think of themselves as "Palestinians".  They were Arabs to themselves and everyone else.  In fact, "Palestine" was universally used to refer to the Jewish state.  Jews who lived there were "Palestinians."  My neighbors, the Padrows, were Palestinians and they were Jewish.  Mimi's family had owned a hotel in Tel Aviv.  Their home had orange groves.  They came to Portland in the 30's and their passports said they were Jews from Palestine. 

It was the hope of the Jewish fathers who started movement back to our land to live peacefully with the Arabs.  We have had 2,000 years already of surrus, so it was normal that Israel offered the Arabs a formal peace treaty in 1949 in exchange for much of the land conquered in the war and even allow the repatriation of some Arab refugees.  The response was again: NO PEACE. 

Resource: Big Lies: by David Meir-Levi, A Publication of the David Horowitz Freedom Center

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