THE STOLEN LAND AND THE STOLEN LIFES
Anti-Semitism, Holocaust, Islam & Jews, Israel&Palestine, Refugees, Всемирная и местная политика, Израиль и Европа, Израиль и Палестина, Конфликт цивилизаций, Люди и пророки, ООН, Сионизм, אנטי-ציונות
1. My uncle fled Palestine (together with his family) in 1938 from pogroms arranged by the Palestinians during the Intifada, which began in 1936. Three years later, in July 1941, he was killed (along with his wife and children, along with three brothers, a sister, and their mother, my grandmother) in the massacre that the Ukrainian fascists arranged in the city of Lviv, as the German Nazis occupied this city. Totally, 25,000 Jews of Lviv were murdered that month.
«The expulsion of Jews from East Jerusalem began during the pogroms of 1929, when the crowd, incited by Muslim preachers, began to kill Jews, plundering and burning their property. Part of the Jewish population moved from the Muslim quarter to the Jewish quarter. So, for example, did the deported residents of the «Rand Yard», whose houses were burned. Others began to leave the Old City altogether, moving to new Jewish neighborhoods, growing outside the walls. And then the intifada began in 1936-1939, when the Jews fled from East Jerusalem, leaving all their possessions. This part of the city was completely abandoned by the Jews. Then the «Galician yard» was left, and the yeshiva «Ateret Cohanim».
To speed up the flight of the Jews, Muslims burned synagogues. As a result, most residents of the Jewish quarter were also forced to leave their homes and flee. So, by 1948, it was home to no more than 1,700 Jews who concentrated around the main synagogues. And their fear was great, although the British fenced the Jewish quarter, like a ghetto.
At the same time, between 1936 and 1939, Muslim pogromists expelled Yemeni Jews from Kfar-Shiloah (Arabic Silwan), plundering their property as usual”.
2.«The mandate of the League of Nations: when the League of Nations granted the United Kingdom a mandate for Palestine in 1922, it explicitly stipulated that the Palestine Administration» would encourage, in cooperation with the Jewish Agency, the direct settlement of Jews on the land, including state lands and lands unfit for cultivation, social purposes «(art. 6).
«British policy, however, followed a different course… Of the approximately 750,000 dunams of cultivated state lands until 1949, the Arabs were allocated 350,000 or almost half, and to the Jews only 17,000 dunums. This clearly contradicted the terms of the mandate”.
«Possessing huge arrays, most of which they could not cultivate, these (Arab) owners began selling surplus land at speculative prices» … «hundreds of millions of dollars were paid by Jewish buyers to Arab landowners … (Report of the Royal Commission on Palestine, 1937)».
«Ghassan Kanafani admits that… the price of land in Palestine increased from 1910 to 1944 by 50 times.»
“as a result of such transactions Arab tenant-farmers were displaced (on one year’s notice), compensation in cash or other land was paid, as required by the 1922 Protection of Cultivators Ordinance; the Jewish land-buying associations often paid more than the law required (Pollack and Boehm, the Keren Kayemeth Le-Israel). Of 688 such tenants between 1920 and 1930, 526 remained in agricultural occupations, some 400 of them finding another land (Palestine Royal Commission Report, 1937, Chapter 9, para. 61)”.
Jews who purchased land in Palestine had no physical ability (e.g. police) to force Arab tenants to leave the land. Part of the Arab tenants remained on the lands acquired by the Jews, until 1948, when they left these lands. The power to evict the tenants had only the British authority, cooperated with the Arab landlords.
Both the Jews who paid huge sums of money for the land and Arab tenants turned victims of large-scale British-Palestinian land fraud.
«The work of Israeli economist Jacob Metser shows that the Arab sector of Mandate Palestine has been intensively developing: the average growth rate was 4.5% per year (which is lower than the growth rate in the Jewish sector but higher than the global rates and rates in neighboring Arab countries). The peak of this growth occurred precisely at the beginning of the 30s»
3. We have to admit that the eviction of Palestinian tenants from their lands was not the reason, but rather the pretext for anti-Jewish behavior of the Palestinians, led by the Husseini clan and opposed by the Palestinian clan of Nashashibi.
The pogroms, the forced eviction of Jews from Eastern Jerusalem, Yafo, Tzfat, or Hebron, and the preventing of Jewish immigration was actually «cleansing» of Palestine from Jewish «filth».
The hostile attitude of the Palestinians towards the Jews was not unexpected. Just one hundred years before the events described, in 1834, local peasants and Arab invaders from abroad started looting and plundering Jewish property throughout the whole of Palestine. These were mass pogroms of Jews with robberies, murders, and beatings. Historians dubbed this the «Uprising of the Fellahs», although the uprising began in the city of Nablus, and pogroms occurred in those cities where Jews still remained. In fact, it was the intifada of the Palestinians.
But where did Palestinians come from in Palestine? Genetic studies and Arab tribal genealogy indicate close ties with the Arab peninsula. However, there is proof of Levantine origin of some part of the Palestinians, especially taking into consideration the female genes of Palestine. Massive re-settling of Muslims and Christians from Syria and Lebanon to Galilee is indicated from18 to 20 century. Gaza and its surroundings were settled by Egyptians in 1830-1840 due to Mohammed Ali’s re-settlement campaign.
In another hand, almost all the conquerors who came to Palestine in the course of the last thousand years, plundered, killed, and expelled primarily the Jews. The only exceptions were Salah ad-Din and Suleiman the Magnificent.
Jews remained in the country since ancient times or moved to the Holy Land from the countries of the Middle East and Europe («performed aliyah»).
Part of these conquerors, having retired after military works, settled in Palestine. They treated the remnants of Jews, who were considered the true masters of the country, with suspicion and hostility. The conquerors and their settlers made efforts to «supplant» the Jews remaining in Palestine.
The foreign rulers not only planted their settlers in Palestine but also prohibited Jews from making Aliyah. So, anti-Zionism is as old as Zionism. Despite prohibitions and persecutions, the Jews returned to Palestine, and this flow never stopped. The only difference between the 1834 «Fallahs’ revolt» and the 1936 Palestinian revolt was that the share of the Jewish population grew up from 5% to about 25% of the population.
During the British Mandate, the Palestinians did not begin, but simply continued their age-old enmity towards the Jews. In addition to protests against the Jewish Aliya, illegal immigration came to Mandate Palestine from neighboring Arab countries, which British officials did not include in the statistics. The indirect calculation, taking into account the rate of natural growth and the absolute actual growth of the Arab population of Palestine, gives a figure of 100,000 illegal immigrants from 1922 to 1944.
One of these «illegals» was the Syrian Islamist militant Sheik Izz ad-Din al Qassam, who at first pretended to be a peaceful instructor of religious schools in Akko, then called for the killing of Jews and Britons and created an illegal militant unit.
So, he challenged the leadership of Amin al-Husseini in Palestine. Unlike Amin, who maintained excellent relations with the British administration, Al Qassam really began to kill not only Jews but also the British. In response, the British killed him (1935).
The «Higher Arab Committee», created by the Palestinians, organized a general strike, a boycott, and violent actions against the Jews. Under the pressure of events, Amin al Husseini ceased to obey the British administration and reoriented to Hitler. As a result, Amin lost the favor of the British and was forced to flee Palestine. Amin tried to control the Palestinian uprising from Damascus, and after the defeat left for Baghdad, then in 1941 landed in Berlin.
4. Under the pressure of the Palestinian uprising, in 1937, «the Peel Commission recommended that Palestine be divided into two states. The Jewish state was to receive most of Galilee and a strip along the coastal plain, up to modern Ashdod (a total of 20% of the territory of Palestine or 5 thousand km²). The Arabs received the entire modern West Bank, the Negev, and Gaza including surroundings. These lands were to become a united Arab state, which also included Jordan».
(My note: the author of the cited article is at odds with mathematics: the total territory of the Mandate, including Jordan, was 120,000 square kilometers, so 5,000 square kilometers allocated to the Jews comprised less than 4% of the entire territory. Today, Israel occupies 17% of the territory of the «Greater Palestine»).
The Palestinians disagreed with these conditions, they demanded the immediate creation of a 100% Arab state under the tutelage of Britain and proceeded to a new stage of the uprising. «Simultaneously with the brutal suppression of the uprising by military methods, Britain is taking the course to eliminate the causes of discontent among the Palestinian Arabs — that is, to restrict Jewish immigration».
In the White Paper of 1939, the British almost completely accepted the demands of the Palestinians:
«The White Paper of 1939 is the report of the British colonial minister Malcolm McDonald to the British Parliament on the policy of the government regarding the British Mandate in Palestine. It was released in response to the demands of the Arab population of Palestine to completely prohibit Jewish immigration and the acquisition of land by Jews. Basic provisions of the White Paper:
-Within 10 years after the publication of the Paper, a single bipartite state of Jews and Arabs will be created in Palestine.
-The Jewish immigration quota for the next five years will be 75,000 people.
-Restriction on the purchase of land by Jews (up to 95% of the land of Palestine will be banned for sale to Jews)”.
Despite such a turn in British politics, Amin al Husseini continued his way to Hitler. In July 1941, Amin al Husseini introduced a memo to the Nazi leaders, in which he proposed «to cleanse the entire Middle East from Jews», and in November of the same year, during a personal meeting with Hitler, received «OK» for this action, plus Hitler’s promise to invade the Middle East and a crackdown on the Jews.
In fact, Hitler was interested in seizing Middle Eastern oil, but at the same time, he had to convince the Arabs that he was not going to establish his colonial rule. Therefore, the reason for the upcoming invasion was the genocide of Jews, which Amin al Husseini so desired.
5. On the other hand, during the uprising of 1936-1939, a Palestinian group, led by the clan of Nashashibi, opposed extremists. Their «peace detachments», seeking to protect Palestinians from looting and murder by armed Palestinian bands and Arab invaders from outside, have entered into an armed confrontation with Al Husseini-backed extremists.
During this internecine war, more Palestinians were killed, than in battles with British troops and Jewish self-defense. About 50,000 Palestinians and Jews fled the country, escaping civil war and economic decline.
Nashashibi group appealed to the leaders of Yishuv with the proposal to unite efforts to expel the British from the country, but in view of the expansion of the Nazis in Europe, the Jewish leaders did not enter into a conflict with Britain.
The British took care to disband the «detachments of peace» created by Nashashibis. The Palestinian supporters of peace with the Jews were active in 1947- 48, too. According to Benny Morris, 32 Palestinian mukhtars signed «peace treaties» with their Jewish neighbors.
For their part, the leaders of Yishuv, and primarily Ben Gurion, also hoped to establish an alliance with the moderate part of the Palestinians. They adhered to the policy of «restraint», not responding to attacks of the Arabs. This was the policy of Yishuv in 1936-39, and then in 1946-48. In the «Season» operation (1946), Ben Gurion tried to eliminate the Jewish opponents of his course toward an alliance with the moderate Palestinians.
Only in April 1948, when Amin al Husseini managed to establish a blockade of Jewish cities, Ben Gurion was forced to launch an offensive («Dalet Plan»).
6. In 1946, the British brought Amin al-Husseini from Europe to the Middle East with an obvious goal: to remove the Nashashibis from leading position among the Palestinians and to prevent a possible union between Jews and Palestinians, directed against Britain.
They fully succeeded in this goal, thanks to Amin al-Husseini’s call for Nakba. There are numerous witnesses, that Amin promoted the Nakba in order to eliminate his political rivals, Nashashibis, who advocated peace with the Jews on conditions of Peel Commission (1937). According to the Nashashibi plan, Transjordan, together with the West Bank and Gaza could become Greater Palestine.
Another Al Husseini’s goal of Naqba was to provoke an uprising in the entire Muslim World and force Arab governments to declare war on Israel. Amin’s policy was to aggravate the conflict with the Jews at any cost, with the purpose to involve the Arab neighbors and Britain on the side of the Palestinians.
Egypt and Syria didn’t hurry to launch the war, while Trans-Jordan introduced their forces to the West Bank in January 1948, with the aim to accomplish the Greater Palestine plan under the auspices of King Abdulla and Nashashibis, which Amin did not like. Simultaneously, due to Naqba, he eliminated Nashashibis. By spring 1948, when Al Husseini’s Nakba plan turned real, the path to peace was closed, up to this day. Later (1951) Amin managed to murder his main rival, King Abdullah.
7. So, in the critical period when the Nazis were preparing a «final solution of the Jewish problem», the Palestinians led by Amin al Husseini played a key role in creating «suitable» conditions for the genocide of Jews, namely: they blocked Jews from taking refuge in their legally purchased land in Palestine. Jews invested up to a billion dollars to purchase a shelter in the event of an impending catastrophe, the idea of which was already in the air of Europe.
The Palestinian landlords took the money, and then the Husseinis, who were landlords themselves, decided to block the buyers from taking possession. British colonial officials profited from this land scam and acted hand in hand with their Palestinian partners.
Under the pressure of Amin al Husseini, the Nazis changed their original plan for «solving the Jewish problem» through the resettlement of the European Jews to Palestine and Madagascar. A memo from Amin al-Husseini and his historic meeting with Hitler took place on the eve of the Wannsee conference, where Nazis prepared the detailed plan for the genocide of the Jews.
8. Today, the Palestinians adhere to the same line that on the eve of World War II: they incite Iran to a «final solution to the Zionist problem», that is, to the genocide of the Jews of Israel. Obviously, we will resist this «Solution» with all our strength. I cannot guarantee that in the course of the Israel-Iran conflict the Palestinian people will not fall into their next misfortunes. Those who really feel sorry for Palestinian children, have to convince the Palestinians that the best and most honest line of conduct is peace with Israel.
I think that for Palestinians, the best political solution to their problem may be the solution that the Palestinians were offered in the course of the Madrid conference: it is the «Great Palestine», including Jordan, the West Bank, and Gaza. By the way, the government of Israel aspired to this solution during the Madrid peace conference of 1992. Just the then-Prime Minister Yitzhak Shamir insisted that Jordan and the Palestinians create a joint delegation for negotiations.
Unfortunately, the Oslo initiative has frustrated these plans, and today no side is ready for such a solution, each for its own reasons. The Palestinians, who are incited by anti-Semites, want to dump Jews to sea at any cost, so Israel is afraid of creating a large, well-armed Palestinian state. In Jordan, there is a growing confrontation between the Palestinians and the Arabs (which gives main support to the king’s regime).
To implement their dream of the Greater Palestine state, the Palestinians must reconcile with their neighbors, Jews, break ties with all anti-Semites, be it Islamists, Europe, Russia, American Democrats, or Iran, and agree to the demilitarization of the West Bank and Gaza. Only by turning allies of the Jewish State, Palestinian Greater Palestine dream will be feasible.