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To understand the present conflict, one has to realize that until 1895 Jews and Muslims had lived together in peace in Palestine for more than1200 years. After the Romans expelled them in 70 A.D., Jews were not allowed to live in Jerusalem for 600 years, but when the conquering Muslim army took that city they invited the Jews to return. And Jews and Muslims lived together in peace for all those centuries until that way of life was destroyed by the interference of Europeans and Americans.
During World War I, the Allied Powers promised self-determination to the Arabic-speaking peoples in the Middle East, but England’s Lord Balfour said, “In Palestine we do not propose even to go through the form of consulting the wishes of the present inhabitants of the country.” And the Balfour Declaration opened Palestine to Zionist-Jewish colonization despite the repeated protests of the native-born people. This completely illegal action was supported by the other European nations and the United States also. Then in 1946-48, tens of thousands of Zionist Jews invaded Palestine, massacred entire villages (men, women, and children) drove half the population (730,000 people) into exile, systematically looted their homes, farms, and businesses, and purposely destroyed more than 500 Palestinian towns and villages.
This should not have come as a surprise to anyone. Expulsion of the Palestinians has been the clearly stated aim of the Zionists from the beginning. In 1895, Theodor Herzl, the father of Zionism, said, “We shall endeavor to expel the Arab population across the border unnoticed.” In 1937, David Ben Gurion, a founder of Israel, wrote, “We must expel the Arabs and take their place.” In 1947, he said, “Every attack has to end with occupation, destruction, and expulsion.” In 1998, Prime Minister Ariel Sharon said, “…there is no Zionism, colonization, or Jewish state without the eviction of the Arabs and expropriation of their lands.” And in 2006, Prime Minister Ehud Olmert told the U.S. Congress, “I believed, and to this day still believe, in our people’s eternal and historic right to this entire land.”
So the Palestinians are not attacking somebody else’s country, they are trying to drive those Jewish invaders out of their own country. Palestinians and their ancestors have been living on this land for more than 3000 years, but those Zionists just invaded and declared it to be the State of Israel. Their claim that God promised Palestine to them is unfounded because most of the Jewish invaders and 96% of all Jews today are not the descendents of the ancient Hebrews but are descendents of converts (Ashkenazi). And even a valid biblical claim would still not give them any territorial rights to Palestine under international law. In contrast, today’s Palestinians are the true descendants of the ancient inhabitants, the Philistines, as demonstrated by the Arabic rendition of the original name of that land – Filastiniya.
Even Israeli Prime Minister David Ben-Gurion admitted the legitimate claim of the Palestinians. In 1956 he said, “If I were an Arab leader, I would never make peace with Israel. That is natural: we have come here and stolen their country. Why would they accept that?” But he still believed that Zionists had the right to drive them out, and Jewish “settlers” have been relentlessly encroaching on Palestinian land ever since. And today, with more than 140 “settlements” already deliberately placed all throughout the West Bank, and more being built every year, the Israelis clearly have no intention of stopping until they have driven the Palestinians out entirely – the total ethnic cleansing that has been their goal since 1895.
So to be a sincere and credible peace-maker, President Obama would have to recognize that Zionism is not Judaism, it is neo-fascism, and that Zionism, not Islam, is responsible for the present hatred and killing. He would have to denounce the Nazi-like ethnic cleansing by Israel and demand justice and freedom for the dispossessed and brutalized Palestinians. He would have to admit that the “two-state solution” is an atrocious arrangement that we would never accept if the U.S. were invaded and occupied. But Obama has shown that he is just as ignorant as Bush, just as dismissive of international law, and just as unwilling to face the unpleasant truth about Israel. So his efforts at peace-making will fail also.
Author’s note: I have no connection whatever with any Arab country or the Muslim religion. In fact, being born and raised in the Mid-West “Bible Belt” I was originally a supporter of the State of Israel.
JEFFERSON CHASE lives in Connecticut.