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Did Israel Really Ethnically Cleanse The Palestinians?

Did Israel Really Ethnically Cleanse The Palestinians?

We have heard this for years now, the Palestinians were ethnically cleansed out of what today is Israel, the narrative has been told and retold to such an extent that now people repeat it as if it is a fact, but is it? But how true is this claim that Israel went about to ethnically cleanse the Arabs from their territories?

The narrative is that leading up to the war of 1948 the Jews went around, rounded up the Arabs and ethnically cleansed their lands of them, expelling them by force, or slaughtering them if they would not leave. Is this true, do historical records bear this out? Not really.

To understand we first have to first understand what was happening at the time. It was 1948, the British due to promising more than one people the same area of land, which, by the way, was in direct violation of the Mandate of Palestine, went to the UN and told them they were no longer able to administer the Mandate.

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What was the Mandate and how was it created?

At the end of the first world war, one of the powers that were aligned with the axis was the Ottoman Empire, in addition to the Hapsburg Empire being forced to disband the Ottoman was as well.

The problem was the holdings held in sovereign by these empires, the land now had to be dealt with. With the Hapsburg Empire you had governments already set up that answered to the central government, setting them up as independent entities was not that difficult, but with the Ottoman Empire much of this was not set up in such a way.

Three territories were without any type of ruling party set up, that would have been Mesopotamia and the Syrian Territories. The Ottomans in the Treaty of Sevres surrendered their sovereign holdings to the League of Nations, they in turn by democratic vote set up the mandates, one from the Mesopotamia area, the other two were split up from the Syrian territories, thus you had the Mandate of Syria and Palestine created out of this territory.

The lands were split, sometimes with a ruling class already in place. With France they took over the Mandate of Syria and the Minor Mandate of Lebanon, Syria needed to have a functioning government set up, Lebanon already had such a government in place.

The land was then further split up by the two powers, Britain and France at the urging of the League of Nations, many times they acted in direct violation of the Mandates, such as stripping the Golan Heights from the Mandate of Palestine and passing it to the Mandate of Syria [1].

Syrian territory was split between the French with the Mandate of Syria, the British with the Mandate of Palestine, out of this After already stripping the Golan Heights from the Mandate, the British then set off to strip over 75% off the total area to appease the Arabs and set up Transjordan, this later became Jordan.

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It was the Mandate of Palestine, this was set up to dictate how the division of the land by the League of Nations would be taken care of. While there were minor mandates, the only ones we will deal with here are the three major mandates, the Mandate of Mesopotamia, Syria, and Palestine.

The problem came about with the Arab belief that the land was theirs, much of this had to do with the Islamic idea that once the area is controlled by Islam, it is their religious duty to keep it that way. I get more into this with “DID ISRAEL STEAL THE ANCESTRAL HOME OF THE PALESTINIANS?“.

The problem was the Arabs were not willing to share the land, they demanded it all, settled for nothing less, and that is exactly what they got – Nothing.

It was after this the violence rose in numbers, the attacks increased against the Jews until the Jews were forced to build up their own defense groups, thus groups like Haganah, Irgun, and other groups to protect their fellow Jews. Soon there was a full-fledged civil war, the British found they could not manage the area, so they pulled out.

Thus you have the next step, the declaration of nationhood after the Arabs rejected UN Resolution #181, Ben Gurion in his own speech said they declared nationhood to fulfill the Mandate of Palestine, that Mandate gave all the land to the Jews.

It was the ensuing war that followed that started this whole lie that Jews went about to ethnically cleanse the Arabs from their lands. But if you listen to what the Arabs said at the time, what we are told and what is historically accurate simply don’t agree with each other.

And what did the Arabs say? Let’s have a look:

The Arab armies entered Palestine to protect the Palestinians from the Zionist tyranny but, instead they abandoned them, forced them to emigrate and to leave their homeland, imposed upon them a political and ideological blockade and threw them  into prisons similar to the ghettos in which the Jews used to live in eastern Europe, as if we were condemned to change places with them. The Arab states succeeded in scattering the Palestinians and in destroying their unity.”
abu-Mazen (Falastin el-Th’ora, Beirut, March 1976)

Secretary-General of the Arab League, Azzam Pasha, agreed that Arab leadership encouraged Palestinians to temporarily leave their homes:
“It was promised that conquering Palestine would be a military picnic, our advice to the Palestinians was to temporarily leave their homes.” (Al-Huda, Lebanon June 5th, 1951).

Syrian Prime Minister, Khalid Al-Azam (in his book Memories, 1973) laments and writes:
We brought disaster on the refugees when we urged them to abandon their homes.”

The Arab Exodus …was not caused by the actual battle, but by the exaggerated description spread by the Arab leaders to incite them to fight the Jews. …For the flight and fall of the other villages, it is our leaders who are responsible because of their dissemination of rumors exaggerating Jewish crimes and describing them as atrocities to inflame the Arabs … By spreading rumors of Jewish atrocities, killings of women and children, etc., they instilled fear and terror in the hearts of the Arabs in Palestine, until they fled leaving their homes and properties to the enemy.” – The Jordanian daily newspaper Al Urdun, April 9, 1953.

The wholesale exodus was due partly to the belief of the Arabs, encouraged by the boasting of an unrealistic press and the irresponsible utterances of some of the Arab leaders that it could be only a matter of some weeks before the Jews were defeated by the armies of the Arab states, and the Palestinian Arabs enabled to re-enter and retake possession of the country.” – Edward Atiyah (Secretary of the Arab League, London, The Arabs, 1955, p. 183)

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The 15th May 1948, arrived … On that day the mufti of Jerusalem appealed to the Arabs of Palestine to leave the country because the Arab armies were about to enter and fight in their stead.”– The Cairo daily Akhbar el Yom, October 12, 1963.

The Arab governments told us: Get out so that we can get in. So we got out, but they did not get in.” A refugee quoted in Al Difaa (Jordan) September 6, 1954.

The Arab armies entered Palestine to protect the Palestinians from the Zionist tyranny, but instead they abandoned them, forced them to emigrate and to leave their homeland, imposed upon them a political and ideological blockade and threw them into prisons similar to the ghettos in which the Jews used to live in Eastern Europe.

The Arab states succeeded in scattering the Palestinian people and in destroying their unity. They did not recognize them as a unified people until the states of the world did so, and this is regrettable.” – The Current President of the Palestinian Authority- Abu Mazen (Mahmoud Abbas), from the official journal of the PLO, Falastin el-Thawra (“What We Have Learned and What We Should Do”), Beirut, March 1976.

“The Arab civilians panicked and fled ignominiously. Villages were frequently abandoned before they were threatened by the progress of the war.” General Glubb Pasha (the British officer who helped build the Transjordanian Army) wrote this in the London Daily Mail (August 12, 1948)

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.The Beirut Institute for Palestinian Studies found that “fully two-thirds of the Palestinians fled their homes without ever seeing a Jewish soldier or hearing a shot fired.”

Lastly, there were some expulsions by the IDF, along these lines: When Moshe Dayan’s lightly armored force (two armored cars stolen from the British and a few home-made armored trucks) broke through at Lydda (Lod), the Arabs fighting threw down their arms while Dayan’s force continued to Ramla.

Seeing the Jewish force continue past them, the Arabs picked up their weapons and resumed fighting, being defeated a second time. At that point, it was decided that there was no way to intern them in Pow camps, so they were escorted to Latrun, where they were handed over to the Jordanians.

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Quotes Confirming That Arab Leaders Told The Arabs to Flee:


1. “The first group of our fifth column consists of those who abandon their homes… At the first sign of trouble they take to their heels to escape sharing the burden of struggle.”— Ash-Sha’ab, Jaffa, 1.30.48

2. “(The fleeing villagers)… are bringing down disgrace on us all… by abandoning their villages.”— As-Sarah, Jaffa, 3.30.48

3. “Every effort is being made by the Jews to persuade the Arab populace to stay and carry on with their normal lives, to get their shops and businesses open and to be assured that their lives and interests will be safe.”— Haifa District HQ of the British Police, April 26, 1948, (quoted in Battleground by Samuel Katz).

4. “The mass evacuation, prompted partly by fear, partly by order of Arab leaders, left the Arab quarter of Haifa a ghost city… By withdrawing Arab workers their leaders hoped to paralyze Haifa.”— Time Magazine, May 3, 1948, page 25

5. “The Arab streets (of Palestine) are curiously deserted (because)… following the poor example of the moneyed class, there has been an exodus from Jerusalem, but not to the same extent as from Jaffa and Haifa.”— London Times, 5.5.48

6. “The Arab civilians panicked and fled ignominiously. Villages were frequently abandoned before they were threatened by the progress of the war.”— General John Glubb “Pasha,” The London Daily Mail, August 12, 1948

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7. “The fact that there are these refugees is the direct consequence of the act of the Arab states in opposing partition and the Jewish state. The Arab states agreed upon this policy unanimously and they must share in the solution of the problem.” — Emile Ghoury, secretary of the Palestinian Arab Higher Committee, in an interview with the Beirut Telegraph 9/6/1948 (same appeared in The London Telegraph, 8.48)

8. “The most potent factor [in the flight of Palestinians] was the announcements made over the air by the Arab-Palestinian Higher Executive, urging all Haifa Arabs to quit… It was clearly intimated that Arabs who remained in Haifa and accepted Jewish protection would be regarded as renegades.”— London Economist Oct. 2, 1948)
 
9. “It must not be forgotten that the Arab Higher Committee encouraged the refugees’ flight from their homes in Jaffa, Haifa, and Jerusalem.”— Near East Arabic Broadcasting Station, Cyprus, 4.3.49

10. “[The Arabs of Haifa] fled in spite of the fact that the Jewish authorities guaranteed their safety and rights as citizens of Israel.”— Monsignor George Hakim, Greek Catholic Bishop of Galilee, New York Herald Tribune, June 30, 1949

11. “The military and civil (Israeli) authorities expressed their profound regret at this grave decision (taken by the Arab military delegates of Haifa and the Acting Chair of the Palestine Arab Higher Committee to evacuate Haifa despite the Israeli offer of a truce). The Jewish mayor of Haifa made a passionate appeal to the delegation (of Arab military leaders) to reconsider its decision.”— Memorandum of the Arab National Committee of Haifa, 1950, to the governments of the Arab League, quoted in J. B. Schechtman, The Refugees in the World, NY 1963, pp. 192f.

12. Sir John Troutbeck, British Middle East Office in Cairo, noted in cables to superiors (1948-49) that the refugees (in Gaza) have no bitterness against Jews, but harbor intense hatred toward Egyptians: “They say ‘we know who our enemies are (referring to the Egyptians),’ declaring that their Arab brethren persuaded them unnecessarily to leave their homes… I even heard it said that many of the refugees would give a welcome to the Israelis if they were to come in and take the district over.”
 
13. “The Arab states which had encouraged the Palestine Arabs to leave their homes temporarily in order to be out of the way of the Arab invasion armies, have failed to keep their promise to help these refugees.”— The Jordanian daily newspaper Falastin, Feb. 19, 1949.

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14. “The Secretary-General of the Arab League, Azzam Pasha, assured the Arab peoples that the occupation of Palestine and of Tel Aviv would be as simple as a military promenade… Brotherly advice was given to the Arabs of Palestine to leave their land, homes, and property to stay temporarily In neighboring fraternal states, lest the guns of invading Arab armies mow them down.” Al Hoda (a New York-based Lebanese daily) June 8, 1951

15. “Who brought the Palestinians to Lebanon as refugees, suffering now from the malign attitude of newspapers and communal leaders, who have neither honor nor conscience? Who brought them over in dire straits and penniless, after they lost their honor? The Arab states and Lebanon amongst them did it.— The Beirut Muslim weekly Kul-Shay, Aug. 19, 1951.

16. “We will smash the country with our guns and obliterate every place the Jews seek shelter in. The Arabs should conduct their wives and children to safe areas until the fighting has died down.— Iraqi Prime Minister Nuri Said, quoted in “Sir An-Nakbah” (The Secret Behind the Disaster) by Nimr el-Hawari, Nazareth, 1952

16. “The Arab Exodus… was not caused by the actual battle, but by the exaggerated description spread by the Arab leaders to incite them to fight the Jews… For the flight and fall of the other villages, it is our leaders who are responsible because of their dissemination of rumors exaggerating Jewish crimes and describing them as atrocities in order to inflame the Arabs… By spreading rumors of Jewish atrocities, killings of women and children etc., they instilled fear and terror in the hearts of the Arabs in Palestine, until they fled leaving their homes and properties to the enemy.”— The Jordanian daily newspaper Al Urdun, April 9, 1953.

17. The Arab governments told us: Get out so that we can get in. So we got out, but they did not get in. (Quoting a refugee)— Al Difaa (Jordan) Sept. 6, 1954

18. “The wholesale exodus was due partly to the belief of the Arabs, encouraged by the boasting of an unrealistic press and the irresponsible utterances of some of the Arab leaders that it could be only a matter of some weeks before the Jews were defeated by the armies of the Arab states, and the Palestinian Arabs enabled to re-enter and re-take possession of their country.” Edward Atiyah (Secretary of the Arab League, London, The Arabs, 1955, p. 183)

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19. “The Arab states do not want to solve the refugee problem. They want to keep it as an open sore, as an affront to the UN and as a weapon against Israel. Arab leaders do not give a damn whether Arab refugees live or die.”— Ralph Galloway, former head of UNWRA, 1956

20. “As early as the first months of 1948, the Arab League issued orders exhorting the people to seek a temporary refuge in neighboring countries, later to return to their abodes… and obtain their share of abandoned Jewish property.”
— Bulletin of The Research Group for European Migration Problems, 1957

21. “Israelis argue that the Arab states encouraged the Palestinians to flee. And Arabs still living in Israel recall being urged to evacuate Haifa by Arab military commanders who wanted to bomb the city.”— Newsweek, January 20, 1963

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22. “The 15th May 1948, arrived… On that day the mufti of Jerusalem appealed to the Arabs of Palestine to leave the country because the Arab armies were about to enter and fight in their stead.” The Cairo daily Akhbar el Yom, Oct. 12, 1963.

23. In listing the reasons for the Arab failure in 1948, Khaled al-Azm (Syrian Prime Minister) notes that “…the fifth factor was the call by the Arab governments to the inhabitants of Palestine to evacuate it (Palestine) and leave for the bordering Arab countries. Since 1948, it is we who have demanded the return of the refugees, while it is we who made them leave. We brought disaster upon a million Arab refugees by inviting them and bringing pressure on them to leave. We have accustomed them to begging… we have participated in lowering their morale and social level… Then we exploited them in executing crimes of murder, arson and throwing stones upon men, women, and children… all this in the service of political purposes...” — Khaled el-Azm, Syrian prime minister after the 1948 War, in his 1972 memoirs, published in 1973

 Palestinian Leader Farouq Qaddoumi: “We Supported The Nazis In WWII because they were the enemies of the Zionists.”
http://www.memritv.Org/clip/en/4075.html


500,000 Arabs fled from the war THEY started in 1948 1 MILLION Jewish innocent citizens were kicked out as the Muslim nation set about to ethnically cleanse them from all Muslim countries (I will deal with this on another day).

To get an idea about the father of the “Palestinians”, who Arafat and others learned from, I suggest strongly you watch this, it is an article about the Grand Mufti of Jerusalem, It is lengthy, but is very accurate, everything can easily be confirmed.

One finds out, the more you dig, the more the whole Palestinian narrative falls apart, if you look at their historical narrative, there is nothing. Their claim that Israel stole their land, nothing there as well. Each of these I go into, you will find the links, along with references, documents that support what I am saying, something you will NEVER get from them.

The claim that the Jews are guilty of trying to ethnically cleanse these Arabs from their lands, this is just another lie in a long list of lies.

[1] Franco-British Convention on Certain Points Connected with the Mandates for Syria and the Lebanon, Palestine, and Mesopotamia, signed 23 December 1920. Text available in American Journal of International Law, Vol. 16, No. 3, 1922, 122–126.

About The Author

Timothy Benton

Author has studied Middle East History for the last 35 years, am a lifetime student of history. Has an interest in sports, tech, history and political events. Works as a Republican political commentator who looks at events from a conservative's perspective.

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