Note: Lately we have received comments on this blog suggesting that we take a history refresher course and read the Balfour Declaration among other things. Below is the first section about Palestine History, put together solely by Larry using the sources listed below! Please let us know what you think and leave comments!
Ahlan wa sahlan fi filistine – Welcome to Palestine
A Brief History of Modern Palestine
1Long before the advent of Zionism, an atmosphere of goodwill prevailed on all sides in the Holy Land. No community trespassed on the rights of another and each worshipped God in its own unique way.
Mutual respect existed between Arabs and Jewish peoples in the Holy Land, as well as elsewhere in Arab lands, where they lived together in harmony. Arabs and Jewish peoples lived peacefully in towns such as Jericho, Gaza, Jerusalem and Tiberius.
Furthermore, they lived and worked together in cities such as Bethlehem, Nablus, Ramallah, or Haifa.
Eretz Israel, the name for Palestine in the Jewish religion, had been revered throughout the centuries by generations of Jewish peoples as a place for Holy pilgrimages, never as a future secular state.
Jewish tradition and religion clearly instruct the Jewish peoples to await the coming of the Messiah at ‘the end of times’ before they can return to Eretz Israel as a sovereign people in a Jewish theocracy, that is, as the obedient servants of God.
Today, we can witness several lines of Ultra-Orthodox Jews who are either non or anti-Zionist because they believe that the Jewish people were banished from the Holy Lands and therefore have no right to return and colonize Palestine.
The Zionist movement claimed the biblical territory as the cradle of their new nationalist movement. They viewed Palestine as being occupied by ‘strangers’ and therefore the territory had to be repossessed.
Moreover, for many Zionists, the country of Palestine was not even an ‘occupied’ land when they first arrived in 1882, but rather an empty one.
2Israeli Prime Minister Golda Meir:
➢ “It was not as though there was a Palestinian people in Palestine considering itself as a Palestinian people and we came and threw them out and took their country away from them. They did not exist.”
2[Interview with Frank Giles of the [London] Sunday Times June 15, 1969]
1[Bitter Harvest – A Modern History of Palestine – Sami Hadawi.]
The Rise of Zionism
3This mutually beneficial relationship was only disrupted when the Jewish Zionists began to claim that Palestine was the “rightful” possession of the “Jewish people” to the exclusion of its Muslim and Christian inhabitants.
Over the decades the Zionists have succeeded in fundamentally shaping world opinion into the belief that Palestine was their “promised Land,” and that it was their “historical homeland.”
When we are defining the rights of the Palestinians, the fact remains that the major portion of the territory now called “Israel” is legitimately owned by individual Palestinians.
Moreover, their rights derive from the universally accepted principal that a country belongs to its indigenous inhabitants.
Zionism is a political philosophy that preaches that Jews are one people and one nation requiring their own land, to which all Jews must eventually return.
3[Bitter Harvest – A Modern History of Palestine – Sami Hadawi.]
Theodor Herzl and Modern Political Zionism
4Theodor Herzl, born in Pest, the eastern part of Budapest, Kingdom of Hungary on May 2, 1860 is widely acknowledged as the founder of modern political Zionism and in effect, the founder of the State of Israel.
Herzl had a brief career in Law but devoted himself to journalism and literature.
In February 1896, Herzl published ‘Der Judenstaat’ [The Jewish State] to immediate acclaim and controversy. The book and Herzl’s ideas spread rapidly throughout the Jewish world and attracted international attention.
➢ “Let the sovereignty be granted us over a portion of the globe large enough to satisfy the rightful requirements of a nation; the rest we shall manage ourselves…”
5[Bitter Harvest – A Modern History of Palestine – Sami Hadawi.]
Der Judenstaat provided all the details of founding such a state other than its actual location. An uninhabited patch of land in Argentina was one possible location; another location was the country of Palestine or ‘Eretz Israel’, which Herzl seemed to prefer.
Herzl went on to form the World Zionist Organization [WZO].
Therefore, this geographical uncertainty was settled by the time of the First Zionist Congress of 1897, held in Basel, Switzerland. The declared aim of the Congress was to establish a ‘Home for the Jewish people in Palestine’.
Accordingly, Theodor Herzl wrote:
➢ “At Basel I founded the Jewish State. If I said this out loud today, I would be answered by universal laughter. Perhaps in five years, and certainly in fifty, everyone will know it.”
The aims of the Zionist movement formulated at that first Congress were:
“Zionism strives to create for the Jewish people a home in Palestine secured by public law. The congress contemplates the following means to the attainment of this end:
1.] The promotion on suitable lines of the colonization of Palestine by Jewish agricultural and industrial workers.
2.] The organization and binding together of the whole of Jewry by means of appropriate institutions, local and international, in accordance with the laws of each country.
3.] The strengthening and fostering of Jewish national sentiment and consciousness.
4.] Preparatory steps toward obtaining Government consent where necessary to the attainment of the aim of Zionism.”
The supporters of existing Zionist movements such as the Hovevei Zion were immediately drawn to Der Judenstaat and allied themselves with Herzl.
However, Theodor Herzl and his Zionist ideas were vilified by establishment Jewry, whose followers perceived his ideas as both threatening their efforts toward acceptance and integration in their resident countries and as rebellion against God.
Furthermore, ‘Eretz Israel’, the name for Palestine in the Jewish religion, had been revered throughout the centuries by generations of Jews as a place for ‘Holy Pilgrimages’, never as a future ‘Secular State’.
Therefore, Jewish tradition and religion clearly instruct the Jews to await the coming of the Messiah at ‘the end of times’ before they can return to ‘Eretz Israel’ as a sovereign people in a Jewish theocracy, that is, as the obedient servants of God.
Herzl did not live to see ‘Eretz Israel’ become the ‘State of Israel’, as he died July 3, 1904 in Edlach, a village in Lower Austria.
A day before his death, he told the Reverend William H. Hechler:
➢ “Greet Palestine for me. I gave my heart’s blood for my people.”
4[Theodor Herzl – Wikipedia – April 29, 2014]
Remarkably, Theodor Herzl and his fellow Zionists chose the Arab country of Palestine as their ‘Home’ almost forty-five years before the Second World War and the Holocaust.
Jewish National Fund
6The Jewish National Fund [JNF] was founded in 1901, and was set up to acquire land in Palestine for the World Zionist Organization [WZO] which was established in 1897.
6[Bitter Harvest – A Modern History of Palestine – Sami Hadawi.]
World War I – 1916
7With the outbreak of World War I, the Zionists finally saw an opportunity in 1916 to move their political agenda forward. It was a disastrous year for the Allied Forces, a staggering number of lives had been lost on the Western Front and German submarines were exacting a heavy toll on Allied shipping.
It was becoming apparent to the Allied Forces that it was now time for the Americans to enter the war to fight on their side. The Americans were not eager to enter World War I.
James Malcolm, an Armenian who had been educated at Oxford University had many contacts within high British circles, in particular, Sir Mark Sykes of the Foreign Office.
Moreover, Sir Mark Sykes informed James Malcolm that the British Cabinet was looking anxiously for the United States Government to intervene in the war. Malcolm replied:
➢ “You are going the wrong way about it. You can win sympathy of certain politically minded Jews everywhere, and especially in the United States, in one way only and that is, by offering to try and secure Palestine for them.”
Louis Brandeis, the United States Supreme Court Judge and also a personal confidant to President Woodrow Wilson was influenced to win over the President.
In April 1917, the United States entered World War I on the side of the Allies.
More than six months later, on November 2, 1917 the Balfour Declaration was issued. The role that Zionists played in bringing the United States into the war has been reported many times.
British Prime Minister David Lloyd George stated:
➢ “There is no better proof of the value of the Balfour Declaration as a military move than the fact that Germany entered into negotiations with Turkey in an endeavour to provide an alternative scheme which would appeal to Zionists.”
Furthermore, when the Prime Minister appeared before the Palestinian Royal [Peel] Commission in 1937 to explain the reasons why his Government granted the Balfour Declaration, he directly stated:
➢ “The Zionist leaders [Mr. Lloyd George informed us] gave us a definite promise that, if the Allies committed to giving facilities for the establishment of a national home for the Jews in Palestine, they would do their best to rally Jewish sentiments and support throughout the world to the Allied cause. They kept their word.”
8The Arab contribution to the First World War is significant with the most important contribution being the Arab occupation on July 6, 1916 of the strategic town of Aqaba. Until then the British Army had been unable to cross the Suez Canal and to advance into the Sinai Peninsula.
Moreover, the British High Command were unaware of the Arab attack and occupation of Aqaba until T.E. Lawrence informed them during a visit to Cairo.
The Arab army continued to harass enemy lines of communication and to attack on all fronts along the Hejaz railway from Medina to Damascus.
The extent of the Arab contribution to the Allied victory was summed up by Captain Liddell Hart, Chief Military Commentator with the Allied Forces at the time. Captain Liddell Hart wrote:
➢ “In the crucial weeks while Allenby’s stroke was being prepared and during its delivery, nearly half of the Turkish forces south of Damascus were distracted by the Arab forces…What the absence of these forces meant to the success of Allenby’s stroke, it is easy to see.”
➢ “Nor did the Arab operation end when it had opened the way. For in the issue, it was the Arabs who almost entirely wiped out the Fourth Army, the still intact force that might have barred the way of final victory.”
Furthermore, Captain Hart continued:
➢ “The wear and tear, the bodily and mental strain on men and material applied by the Arabs…prepared the way that produced their [the Turks] defeat.”
8[Palestine: The Reality – Joseph M.N. Jeffries – 1939]
Unfortunately, the Arabs were not aware at the time that the result of their heroic participation in the First World War was not to achieve for them the much sought for independence, but to simply change masters from Turkish to British and French, despite the latter’s promises and pledges supplemented by the declared war aims of the United States.
9Therefore, on February 11, 1918, President Woodrow Wilson declared as essential to any peace settlement:
➢ “Peoples are not to be handled about from one sovereignty to another by an international conference or an understanding between rivals and antagonists.”
Furthermore, on July 4, 1918, President Wilson said:
➢ “The settlement of every question, whether of territory, of sovereignty, of economic arrangement, or of political relationship, [be] upon the basis of the free acceptance of that settlement by the people concerned and not upon the basis of material interest or advantage of any other nation or people which may desire a different settlement for the sake of its own exterior influence or mastery.”
9[Ordeal of Woodrow Wilson – Herbert Hoover – 1958]
Following the end of the First World War, Britain was appointed the occupying power of the country of Palestine under the League of Nations’ Palestine Mandate.
Britain then began to implement a number of policies that contributed to escalating hostilities between the indigenous Arab/Palestinian citizens and the immigrant Jewish communities.
7[Bitter Harvest – A Modern History of Palestine – Sami Hadawi.]
The British War Pledges of Arab Independence
10Upon the outbreak of World War 1, the Arabs saw their opportunity to rid themselves of Turkish domination and regain their political independence.
Therefore, Sherif Hussein of Mecca, as spokesperson for the Arab cause, approached Sir Henry McMahon, the British High Commissioner in Cairo, in July 1915, offering Arab aid in the war against Turkey if Britain would, in return, pledge its support of Arab independence.
Sherif Hussein explicitly specified in Letter No. 1 dated July, 14, 1915, the Arab territory as follows:
➢ “… bounded on the north by Mersina and Adana up to 370 of latitude, on which degree fall Birijik, Urfa, Mardin, Midiat, Jezirat [Ibn’Umar], Amadia, up to the border of Pershia [present day Iran]; on the east by the borders of Persia up to the Gulf of Basra; on the south by the Indian Ocean, with the exception of the position of Aden to remain as it is; on the west by the Red Sea, the Mediterranean Sea up to Mersina.”
10[Bitter Harvest – A Modern History of Palestine – Sami Hadawi.]
The Hussein—McMahon Correspondence – 1915-1916
11Sherif Hussein of Mecca, as spokesperson for the Arab cause, approached Sir Henry McMahon, British High Commissioner in Cairo, on July 14, 1915, offering Arab aid in the war against Turkey if Britain would, in return, pledge its support of Arab independence in a certain territory.
[Cmd. 5957 – Hussein-McMahon Correspondence 1915 – 1916, Letter No. 1 Dated July 14, 1915.]
A correspondence—later known as the Hussein-McMahon Correspondence—consisting of ten letters, was exchanged during the period July 1915 to March 1916, culminating in a British promise of Arab independence.
However, the British Government was secretly negotiating with the French and Russian Governments for the division among themselves of the Asiatic provinces of the Ottoman Empire after the War.
The British promise stated:
➢ “The two districts of Mersina and Alexandretta and portions of Syria lying to the west of the districts of Damascus, Homs, Hama and Aleppo cannot be said to be purely Arab and should be excluded from the limits demanded.”
Furthermore, the British promised:
➢ “With the above mentioned modification and without prejudice to our existing treaties with Arab chiefs, we accept those limits.”
McMahon went on to say:
➢ “As for these regions lying within those frontiers wherein Great Britain is free to act without detriment to the interest of her ally France, I am empowered in the name of the Government of Great Britain to give the following assurances and make the following reply to your letter.”
➢ “Subject to the above modifications, Great Britain is prepared to recognize and support the independence of the Arabs in all the regions within the limits demanded by the Sherif of Mecca.”
However, the British would later contend that Palestine was not included in the British pledge of Arab independence and claimed that the area cited as being:
➢ “west of the line Damascus, Homs, Hama, and Aleppo,”
was excluded from the British pledge.
It would not be until 1939 that a Committee would be formed to study the Hussein-McMahon Correspondence. Sir Michael McDowell, former Chief Justice of Palestine, stated that:
➢ “Palestine was included,”
➢ “speak of the districts of Damascus, Homs, Hama and Aleppo, not one of which is east of Palestine and all of which go northward in that order away from Palestine?”
➢ “Why say nothing of the Sanjaqs of Hauran and Maan to the west of which the whole of Palestine lies?”
Sir Michael McDowell, former Chief Justice of Palestine continued:
➢ “Why not if Palestine was to be described, speak of Lake Huleh, the River Jordan, the Lake of Tiberias and the Dead Sea as the eastern boundaries?”
Furthermore, Sir Michael McDowell remarked:
➢ “To suggest that an area of the size Palestine and of the importance of the Holy Land, if not excluded by the act that it did not lie west of the districts of Damascus, Homs, Hama and Aleppo, was intended to be excluded by a side wind by the reference to the interests of France which, at the very time, the British government was refusing to admit, is an argument that will not hold water.”
The Committee’s findings were:
➢ “In the opinion of the Committee, it is, however, evident from these statements that His Majesty’s Government were not free to dispose of Palestine without regard for the wishes and interests of the inhabitants of Palestine and that these statements-upon any interpretation of the Correspondence-His Majesty’s Government have incurred towards those inhabitants as a result of the Correspondence.”
11[Bitter Harvest – A Modern History of Palestine – Sami Hadawi.]
The Sykes – Picot Agreement – 1916
12As the ink was drying on the British pledge of Arab independence, the British government was secretly negotiating with the French and Russian governments for the division among themselves of the Asiatic provinces of the Ottoman Empire after victory.
The Agreement was named after Sir Mark Sykes and George Picot, the two main negotiators. The Sykes-Picot Agreement provided for:
[a] an independent Arab state or consideration of Arab states in a part of what is now geographically known as Saudi Arabia and Yemen.
[b] France in Lebanon and Syria, and Britain in Iraq and Trans-Jordan, “to establish such direct or indirect administration or control as they may desire and as they may deem fit to establish after agreement with the Arab States or Confederation of Arab States.”
[c] Parts of Palestine to be placed under “an international administration of which the form will be decided upon after consultation with Russia and after subsequent agreement with the other Allies and the representatives of the Sherif of Mecca.”
George Antonius, an Arab authority on the Sykes-Picot Agreement said that the provisions in the Agreement included serious errors such as cutting up the Arab rectangle in such a manner as to place artificial obstacles in the way of unity.
Moreover, whatever gains the Allied Powers may have expected to receive from the partition of the territory showed a lack of insight and understanding on their part to believe it would make for a peaceful or lasting settlement.
➢ “Another peculiarity of the Agreement, was that it provided for a Topsy-turvy political structure in which the first were to come last and the last first. The inhabitants of Syria and Iraq were politically more developed and mature than the inhabitants of the inland regions.”
➢ Yet the Agreement provided that the greater part of Syria and Iraq might be placed under a regime of direct foreign administration, while the inland regions were in any case to form independent Arab States. The absurdity of these provisions is particularly evident in the case of the regions destined to form the British sphere of influence.”
➢ “But more serious even than those errors of judgement, was the breach of faith.”
➢ “The Agreement, had been negotiated and concluded without the knowledge of the Sherif Hussein and it contained provisions that were in direct conflict with the terms of Sir Henry McMahon’s compact with him.”
➢ “Worse still, the fact of its conclusion was dishonestly concealed from him because it was realized that, were he to have been appraised of it, he would have unhesitatingly denounced his alliance with Great Britain.”
Furthermore, George Antonius also stated that the Sykes-Picot Agreement was:
➢ “a shocking document,” adding, “it is not only the product of greed at its worst, that is to say, of greed allied to suspicion and so leading to stupidity; it also stands out as a startling piece of double-dealing.”
British Prime Minister David Lloyd George, without whose approval the Agreement could not have been concluded, nevertheless described it as, “a foolish document.”
12[Bitter Harvest – A Modern History of Palestine – Sami Hadawi.]
The Balfour Declaration – 1917
13British Foreign Minister Arthur Balfour was a Zionist of Jewish descent, who issued the text of the Balfour Declaration on November 2, 1917 in the form of a letter written to Edmond de Rothschild.
Moreover, the Balfour Declaration may be divided into three distinct parts, with the first part applicable to the Jewish peoples.
1.] “His Majesty’s Government view with favour the establishment in Palestine of a national home for the Jewish people and will use their best endeavours to facilitate the achievement of this object.”
The second part of the Declaration affected the rights and conditions of the Muslims and Christians.
2.] “It being clearly understood that nothing shall be done which may prejudice the civil and religious rights of existing non-Jewish communities in Palestine.”
Finally, the third part refers to the position of Jewish people outside of Palestine.
3.] “The rights and political status enjoyed by Jews in any other country shall not be prejudiced by the establishment in Palestine of a national home for the Jewish people.”
This latter protective clause gave the Jewish peoples the homeland of another people while safeguarding their own rights in their countries of origin.
Furthermore, upon closer examination of the second safeguarding clause, Muslims and Christians who in 1917, comprised 92% of the population of the country are referred to as:
➢ “the non-Jewish communities of Palestine.”
Clearly, an erroneous impression could be inferred that Muslims and Christians were a minority occupying a position subordinate to the Jewish peoples.
Moreover, this clause by purporting to protect the rights of the Arabs as:
➢ “the existing non-Jewish communities,”
in actual fact aimed at robbing them of their right to their country as owners and indigenous inhabitants.
The British Government should have been very aware that the Balfour Declaration would be a disastrous encroachment on Arab rights in Palestine.
Furthermore, the British Government promised to assist the Zionists with their endeavour to secure Palestine as a homeland for the Jewish peoples, however, the Government neglected to protect the rights of the Palestinian people.
13[Bitter Harvest – A Modern History of Palestine – Sami Hadawi.]
14The author of the Balfour Declaration expressed widely held sentiments in the industrial West when he wrote, in 1919, that:
➢ “Zionism, be it right or wrong, good or bad, is rooted in age long tradition, in present needs, in future hopes, of far profounder import than the desires and prejudices of the 700,000 Arabs who now inhabit that ancient land.”
15Somehow the Palestinian peasants, mired in their prejudice, were never able to appreciate their moral responsibility to expiate the sins of Christian Europe.
Whatever one may think of the conflicting claims to national and Human Rights in the former Palestine, it is difficult not to be appalled when Western politicians and intellectuals explain their backing for Israel’s policies in terms of ‘moral obligation’, as if the sins of the Nazis and their predecessors, or the Americans who closed the doors to refugees to Hitler’s horrors, require the sacrifice of the Palestinians – on moral grounds.
How easy it is to meet one’s moral obligations by sacrificing someone else’s life.
15[The Palestinians – Rosemary Sayigh 1979. Excerpt from the introduction to the First Edition written by Noam Chomsky.]
On a final note, in Ireland, Lord Balfour is known as Bloody Balfour.
As the Chief Secretary for Ireland in 1887, he issued orders that rioters [read protesters, or anyone prepared to demonstrate against British injustice] should be shot down by the British Army.
Instead of being tried as a war criminal, Balfour went on to become British Prime Minister in 1902.
Although he lost his seat after only three years he retained the leadership of the Conservative Party until 1911.
Furthermore, in 1915, Balfour served as First Lord of the Admiralty in the Liberal administration of Prime Minister H.H. Asquith.
And under Liberal Prime Minister Loyd George [1863-1945] Lord Balfour was Foreign Secretary – in which capacity he issued the infamous so-called Balfour Declaration.
The Partition of Ireland by the British took place in 1920.
14[Washington Report Magazine – January/February 2014.]
Palestinians Reassured of Fulfilment of War Promises – 1918
15The Palestinians were completely unaware that the British Government had concluded two secret agreements that conflicted with Palestinian aspirations for independence.
The First Agreement: The Sykes-Picot Agreement was going to divide the Arab territories between Britain and France.
The Second Agreement: The Balfour Declaration was going to sign Palestine over to the Jewish peoples, not the Palestinians.
The texts of the two agreements were disclosed by the Russian Bolsheviks when they came to power in 1917, and then widely publicized by the Turkish military as a sign of British betrayal to the Arab cause.
Furthermore, Sherif Hussein requested an immediate explanation from the British Government for this apparent betrayal. The assurances provided to Sherif Hussein did not fully convince the Arabs but they continued to fight the Turkish military on behalf of Britain.
The assurances provided to the Arabs:
1.] The Hogarth Message – January 1918.
2.] The Bassett Letter – February 8, 1918.
3.] The British Declaration to the Seven – June 16, 1918.
4.] The Anglo – French Declaration – November 9, 1918.
15[Bitter Harvest – A Modern History of Palestine – Sami Hadawi.]
The Hogarth Message – January 1918
16The Hogarth Message of January 1918—An explicit assurance was given that:
➢ “Jewish settlements in Palestine would only be allowed in so far as would be consistent with the political and economic freedom of the Arab population.”
➢ “the political and economic freedom of the Arab population”
is very significant in that it represented a fundamental departure from the text of the Balfour Declaration that purported to guarantee only the
➢ “civil and religious rights”
of the Arab population and, as will be readily seen, offered a guarantee of Arab independence and sovereignty, which the phrase used in the Balfour Declaration did not.
16[The Arab Awakening – George Antonius 1938.]
The Bassett Letter – February 1918
17The Bassett Letter of February 8, 1918 – This was another reassurance that:
➢ “His Majesty’s Government and their allies remain steadfast to the policy of helping any movement which aims at setting free those nations which are oppressed…”
The letter went on to say:
➢ “The Government of His Britannic Majesty repeats its previous promise in respect of the freedom and the emancipation of the Arab people.”
17[Palestine: The Reality – Joseph M.N. Jeffries 1939.]
The British Declaration to the Seven – 1918
18 This declaration of June 16, 1918 confirmed previous British pledges to the Arabs in plainer language than in former public utterances. The declaration referred to the proclamations read in Baghdad and Jerusalem on March 19 and December 9, 1917, respectively and stated that these proclamations:
➢ “define the policy of His Majesty’s Government towards the inhabitants…which is that the future government…should be based upon the principle of the consent of the governed. This policy will always be that of his Majesty’s Government.”
18[The Arab Awakening – George Antonius 1938.]
The Anglo – French Declaration – 1918
19 The Anglo – French Declaration of November 9, 1918 – if there had been any doubts in the minds of the Arabs, these were dispelled by this last declaration:
➢ “France and Great Britain agree to further and assist in setting up indigenous governments and administrations in Syria [which then included Palestine] and Mesopotamia [Iraq].”
19[Palestine: The Reality – Joseph M.N. Jeffries 1939.]
The Jerusalem Easter Sunday Riots – 1920
20The first signs of unrest between Palestinian Arabs and Jews occurred in 1920 when Zionist designs on the Holy Land became apparent. Riots broke out in Jerusalem on Easter Sunday in April of that year resulting in the loss of lives on both sides.
It was the Easter 1920 riot that initiated the deterioration of Palestinian-Jewish relations.
The Zionists pushed their mass immigration policy, and started an extensive campaign of purchasing Palestinian/Arab lands. They began to exclude Palestinian/Arab workers from labouring in the orange groves and other Jewish enterprises, further straining relations between the two communities.
More riots followed in 1921, 1926 and in 1929 the most severe rioting occurred throughout the country resulting in tremendous damage to property and loss of life.
Moreover, it was after that period, that the Jewish peoples began to isolate themselves into separate areas and began to build up their underground forces to ‘seize’ the country of Palestine in due time.
From that point on, the two communities which for centuries had lived peacefully in co-existence began to drift further apart, with one planning how to ‘occupy’ the country, and the other determined to make an attempt to ‘defend’ what rightfully belonged to it.
20[Bitter Harvest – A Modern History of Palestine – Sami Hadawi.]
Albert Einstein Speaking Out About Zionism
➢ 21″I should much rather see reasonable agreement with the Arabs on the basis of living together in peace than the creation of a Jewish State. Apart from practical considerations, my awareness of the essential nature of Judaism resists the idea of a Jewish State, with borders, an army, and a measure of temporal power, no matter how modest.”
➢ “I am afraid of the inner damage Judaism will sustain—especially from the development of a narrow nationalism within our own ranks, against which we have already had to fight strongly, even without a Jewish State.”
➢ “We are no longer the Jews of the Maccabee period. A return to a nation in the political sense of the word, would be equivalent to turning away from the spiritualization of our community which we owe to the genius of our prophets.”
21[The Decadence of Judaism in Our Time]