From Alan Gold to Peter Slezak

November 16, 2010 by J-Wire
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Of all the many half-truths, omissions, predispositions and bigotries in Peter Slezak’s letter concerning his support for the Palestinians, the most egregious – indeed the one which virtually disqualifies him from serious contention – is his reliance upon the alleged Jewish expulsion of Palestinians during the 1948 war.

If anything shows the extent to which he and others of a similar ilk rely on a prostitution of history to support their case to allege Israel’s amorality, it is his contention that….

We Jews may feel reassured that we having nothing to feel guilty about concerning the 800,000 Palestinians – half the population – who were forcibly evicted amid many massacres from over 500 villages that were destroyed in accordance with Hagana’s ‘Plan Dalet’.

Yet he makes no mention of the fact that an estimated 800,000 to one million Arab Jews who had lived in their lands since ancient times, were forcibly expelled or fled due to persecution from Arab nations after the creation of Israel. The expulsion or exodus under pressure happened between 1948 and the early 1970’s. A quarter of a million Arab Jews settled in Israel in the three years following 1948 and around three quarters of a million by the early 1970’s.

Does Slezak acknowledge this while he’s excoriating Israel for ‘creating’ the Palestinian diaspora? Of course not. It’s just another inconvenient fact which doesn’t suit his case.

But what about Slezak’s evidence for Israel’s expulsion of Palestinians in 1948 and 1967? Hmmm…another problem for him if he listens to independent sources instead of relying on his usual well-springs of information.

According to eye-witnesses in Official British Police reports at the time, in 1948 Arabs in Israel were invited by their fellow Arabs (in neighbouring countries) to leave their homes to enable the invading Arab armies to purge the land of Jews. Certain of a quick victory, the Arab leaders warned Arabs to leave Israel and run for their lives. This is verified by radio broadcasts from Egypt and other neighbours, telling the Palestinian Arab residents to get out of the way of their armies and assuring them that they would return to inhabit all the land once the Jews had been pushed into the sea.

Yet in response to such threats, the Jewish Haifa Workers’ Council advised the Arab residents of their city: “For years, we have lived together in our city, Haifa…do not fear: do not destroy your homes with your own hands…do not bring upon yourself tragedy by unnecessary evacuation and self-imposed burdens….but in this city, yours and ours, Haifa, the gates are open for work, for life, and for peace for you and your families.”

Was that typical? Probably not. In the confusion of a war, atrocities are committed by all sides and recriminations follow. And I can understand why Peter and his mates are so conflicted by the history. Isn’t it strange that after so many wars and engagements since the foundation of Israel, the losers are demanding unconditional surrender, and the victor is suing for peace.

So let’s examine for a moment the varying circumstances of the Palestinian refugees from Israel, and Jewish refugees from Arabia. The Palestinians are demanding a right of return, compensation and much more. And not just for those who left in 1948 and in subsequent engagements. No, they’re also demanding the right of return for their second, third and fourth generation children who have no connection with Israel other than their family history. In what other global conflict would the grandchildren and great-grandchildren of refugees demand the right of return to a foreign country. From the time of the first wave of migration into Israel, given impetus by Herzl, Weizmann and others, Zionists lobbied world leaders, and raised money to purchase land from absentee Ottoman landlords. So when Israel was created by the UN, it was a bona fide Nation, and Jews were invited to return to their land of heritage from all over the world. Very different from the Palestinian great grandchildren in camps in Lebanon and Jordan demanding the right to return to Israel.

But what do the Jewish evacuees of the Arab governments which forced them to leave their ancestral homes demand? Little, if anything. The Arab Jews who left have in the main been resettled in Israel, become Israeli citizens, and have contributed to the growth and prosperity of the nation. Do their children and children’s children demand the right of return to Morocco or Iraq or Egypt? Has the UN set up a special (and unique) agency like UNWRA to look after the needs of the Jewish refugees in Israel who have, by government assistance and their own hard work, established themselves? Nope!

So Peter, before you continue to give the Jewish community the biased history lesson which you feel we so urgently require, take a holistic view of the situation, think about rights and wrongs on both sides, and learn to move on.

Alan Gold

Comments

One Response to “From Alan Gold to Peter Slezak”
  1. Paul Winter says:

    Gold is perfectly correct. But there are three points he missed with regard to the Arab refugee. For the “Palestinians”, the refugee status is a patrimony and a paycheque, something no other refugee group enjoys. While an native Australian has 50000 year old roots, by UNWRA rules a Pally refo need have roots no longer than two(!!!) years. The UNWRA is the political arm of the mohammedans which uses its own people as pawns in their war to destroy Jewish self-determination. Perhaps an even greater fault of Slezak and his ilk than their parroting of the jihadi narrative while ignoring history, is their dismal and damning silence at the brutality and lack of human and Islamic concern for their brothers and sisters, displaced by their leaders’ antisemitic aggression.

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