This action might not be possible to undo. Are you sure you want to continue?
As virtually every human inhabitant of the planet earth by now knows, on September 11th, 2001, beginning a few minutes before 9 a.m., the New York office buildings known as the World Trade Center, were targets of Arab nationalists for the second time in less than 10 years. 19 men early that day were able to get past airline security checks and board four large American Airlines commercial airline flights, two of which they then hijacked and within minutes flew into the office towers of the buildings, killing themselves and the passengers. To the amazed disbelief of the world, within two hours both huge, seemingly indestructible buildings had collapsed literally to their foundations. A third plane was flown into the Pentagon, in Washington, D.C., killing its passengers, its Arab highjackers and a number of the building’s military and civilian occupants. A fourth hijacked plane crashed in western Pennsylvania from causes as yet not fully documented but made subject of much creative journalism, killing everyone on board. Over 3,000 persons died as a result. While the facts and history behind them will not be agreed upon by everyone, the following pages nevertheless seek to document how we, the American people, and our representatives, have step by step and little by little, strayed from the ideals on which our founders staked “their lives, their fortunes, and their sacred honor.” These men and their families did not worry about security or personal safety, and they kept their religion separate from their politics.-They risked the King’s rope around their necks for their own and their descendant’s freedom and independence. Furthermore, from their writings it is clear they believed all men were entitled to fairness and justice.
Wherever there is injustice, there is the unjust. Wherever there is the unjust, there are the seeds of resistance and violence. While many of the fundamental rights of man may be qualified, to a degree, by particular societal custom, rules and laws, justice is not one of them. Justice is an absolute. The idea that justice depends upon arbitrary law is the basis of tyranny. There is only one universal avenue to justice and that is to be fair and just to one’s fellow creatures. This universal proposition has been true for as long as man has walked the earth: It is recognized by people of every social persuasion in whatever form it takes. Without justice, a truly democratic society cannot exist. This book presents the documented historical facts and background, and asks you, the reader, to judge. Although the facts must lead inevitably to certain conclusions, it is not a brief against anyone other than those who are unjust or who have condoned injustice. Although it is clearly against the unjust, it is not intended to otherwise argue the cause of any party or faction. As Americans, our concern is not for one side or the other, but for our American ideals. This book, in the end, is not about partisanship. It is about America’s fading reputation for justice. It is, to be more precise, about the fading vision of what our founders clearly intended for America and its people. It is about the injustice that has grown out of a legal and ethical system that finds its roots in the mentality of kings and dictators; it is about the injustice of partisan politicians who, in conducting the affairs of the people, ignore the rights of the people; it is about the very present danger to our constitutional system, to our own claims of democracy and equality, fairness and justice, that the biases, special agendas and ambitions of our wealthiest
citizens, our political representatives, and our own gullibility, ignorance and arrogance, are leading us into. For nearly a century, educated Americans, men and women in the federal bureaucracy, writers and educators in the intellectual mainstream, as well as every single one of us in the population, have actively cooperated or remained silent while our elected representatives have led us away from our founders’ stated original goals of “liberty and justice for all”, toward the events of September 11th, 2001. This book is about that failure to defend and to reaffirm those original goals, to act responsibly, honestly, and even-handedly in generations of foreign policy dealings with the Palestine Arabs, and thus, to avert the September 11th disaster which has set the stage for an even greater national tragedy: the end of America as we know it. Had it occurred at any other time, the attack might have been less damaging to the American ethos. Coming as it did on the heels of what at best was a clearly invalid, and at worst a fraudulent, presidential election that proved nothing so much as our neglect to continue to improve and evolve a truly honest, logical system of governance, or to produce intelligent leadership, it mutated into a terminal disaster. In a rare post-September 11th videotaped interview which somehow eluded corporate censorship and suppression by rabidly biased television network news managers, the man alleged to have financed the two attacks on the World Trade Center in 1993 and 2001, Osama bin Laden, gave, as the reasons for the tragic attacks, the abuse of Palestinian rights by the western powers over a period of “80 years”, and most recently the egregious military support of Israel by United States. American supporters of Israel, their many allies in the Congress, their wealthy and powerful lobby (some say the largest, best financed, most powerful lobby in the U.S.) and political machine, and the television media they control,
instantly sprang into action -- almost before the collapse of the north tower-- to begin a frantic, guilt-driven mantra proclaiming that the attacks were motivated by fundamentalist Muslim hatred for the United States, rather than our decadeslong military support of Israel. As successive reports made the linkage clearer and clearer to the American public, the corporate media and government were forced to change their story and concede that indeed there was a strong connection between our military support for Israel and the attack on America. However, the previous nightly barrages of denials and lies, half-truths and disinformation served up by career-conscious television talking heads in the media in behalf of a pro-Israel lobby, and a captive Bush administration, had served their purpose in enflaming the public against Muslims, deflecting attention from the attack’s true causes. Unlike the sinking of the Lusitania, leading to our World War I declaration of war on Germany, or the attack on Pearl Harbor, leading to our involvement in World War II, within days of the event, U.S. flags miraculously appeared on the mail boxes of the nation. Scarcely had the attack ended before “American” patriotism and a “war on terrorism” were bruited over every microphone and through every television camera in a rising crescendo. In just 25 days, a subservient Bush, flanked by his lock-step advisers and a submissive Congress, launched a major military invasion of villages of Afghanistan dubbed with the usual Disneyland hyperbole: Operation Enduring Freedom. Thoughtful Americans wondered what our enduring freedom had to do with an attack by 19 men on three buildings in New York City and Washington. Where were the proportions? Were vast armies of terrorists on their way to enslave the most powerful, modern military nation in the world? -- Charges of treason were hysterically leveled at those who wondered such thoughts aloud. Even an Arab
educator, drafted as a Middle Eastern expert by CBS “60 Minutes”, despite all the implications to the contrary, professed not to understand what the clear bin Laden statement meant. Did he really mean “80 years” as he said? What was its significance? What had that to do with Israel and the United States? What it meant was clear to any Arab, or for that matter, any thinking American, who saw that brief video clip. What it meant was, according to bin Laden, that had it not been for the deliberate taking of Palestinian lands in 1921; 80 years of exponential, illegal increases in Jewish immigrations into Palestine; the expulsion of hundreds of thousands of Palestinians from their generational lands; repeated Israeli repudiation of its promises and treaty agreements; generations of murder and rape by Israelis in continuous terrorism, and U.S. support and financing of the Israel military machine against the relatively unarmed people of Palestine, a just resolution of the Palestine issue would surely have spared Americans the attacks on the World Trade Center and Pentagon. But this was not the postSeptember 11th message the outraged arrogance of a self-proclaimed super power wanted to hear. The most efficient propaganda campaign ever launched, against a suspected enemy that, itself, had no army, no navy, no air force, and few weapons, had whipped the American people into an emotional frenzy – calling for revenge, not justice. The tv network Arab expert’s pardonable caution was pure, unrepentant dissembling by a careerist living and working in the United States at a particularly sensitive moment in time. The terrible message was clear. The attacks were inextricably linked to U.S. financing of the Israeli military machine. That was the message the powerful supporters of Israel desperately did not want Americans to hear.
It is historical fact, despite denial by Zionist Jews and their wealthy religious and political sympathizers in the west, that the Palestinians have been systematically murdered, their property confiscated, and survivors deprived of their ancestral homelands by the Zionist invaders; and that Palestine, an historically coveted strip of valuable land 175 miles long and 80 miles wide along the Mediterranean coast between Egypt, Lebanon, and Jordan, has been lusted after by the Jews since pre-biblical times; and by the Zionists at least since the 19th century. On September 11th, 2001, thousands of Americans horribly and pointlessly lost their lives in the very avoidable consequence of these continuous, unjust and unprincipled acts relentlessly perpetrated upon millions of Palestinian Arabs; and millions of other Americans today are losing liberties and rights – and their very economic security – to the poor judgment, unconstitutional meddling with our laws and legal system, knee-jerk foreign policy, and panicky response of ignorant, fear-driven leaders who came to power in a disputed, unrepresentative election despite losing the popular vote. Much has been made in the U.S. press of the right of Israel to occupy Palestinian towns, homes and farms in its “legitimate self-defense”. This argument is based on alleged responsible individuals’ acceptance of the Jews’ religious claim to Palestine and this right is in turn based on an argument that the God of Abraham gave them “an historic right” to make their home there. But let us go back a moment. Is there really any historic evidence, outside of their own religious scriptures, that give the Jews exclusive title to Palestinian lands? – Is it really a “legitimate self-defense” that would stand up under any serious scrutiny, or in any unbiased and objective court of civil law? – Here are the facts:
I. The British Mandate In the early bible, the Lamentations of Jeremiah and Psalm 137 speak of the Jews in 1,300 B.C. Babylon, and their longing for Zion (Jerusalem). However, before David’s arrival, Jerusalem was an ancient city of the Arab Canaanite civilization, probably starting as a caravan stop, a caravanserai, about 3,000 B.C. The first large Hebrew presence in Jerusalem came with David’s capture of it from the Canaanites. It is clear some individuals were in Jerusalem at an earlier date and had come to view their memory of “Zion” as a comparative Garden of Eden because of its superior climate, water, and natural resources. In fact, it has been incontrovertibly, historically established that the tribes that became known as the Hebrews came out of the deserts of Mesopotamia (modern Iraq), between the 14th and the 12th centuries, B.C., and that when they arrived in Palestine, they found Arabs living there. The traditional birthplace of the Muslim faith is Medina, in today’s Saudi Arabia. The Hebrews’ biblical enemies, the Philistines (Palestinians) had earlier arrived by sea, from Phoenicia, Egypt, and the island of Crete. Contrary to the claims of the parties, neither Muslim nor Jew has a special “historic” claim to Palestine. Only religious Christians truly can be said to have a “homeland” in today’s Palestine, through Christ’s traditional birth in Bethlehem; although it is true that the early “hunter-gatherers” described by historians as the aboriginal peoples of the region were prehistoric Arabs living in the Palestinian area.
About the 13th century B.C. the early Hebrew warrior kings, Saul, David and Solomon, united the Twelve Tribes and led them to victory against established resident tribes, the Philistines. However, differences later arose between them and they split into two states, Israel and Judah. These states were eventually defeated in battle and destroyed: Israel by Assyria (modern Syria) (721 B.C.) and Judah by Babylonia (modern Iraq) (587 B.C.). The last Jewish rulers, the Maccabees, reigned in Judea from 164 B.C. to 63 B.C., when the Roman general Pompey took Jerusalem. Thereafter, Palestine was ruled by foreigners: Romans, Persians, Greeks, Egyptians and Turks. In 540 A.D., the Persians took Jerusalem from the Romans. Edward Gibbon wrote in his “Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire”, that in the 5th century A.D., the invading Persians, “aided by a force of 26,000 Jews, whose furious bigotry might compensate in some degree for (their) want of valour and discipline” imposed a bloody massacre on 90,000 Christians; and that the massacre was “imputed to the Jews and Arabs, who swelled the disorder of the Persian march.” In 1099 A.D. the Crusaders took Jerusalem from the Seljuk Turks only to lose it two hundred years later to the Mamelukes of Egypt, themselves later to be defeated by the Turks. From 1516 until 1918, a period of 400 years, Palestine and its people remained subjects of the Turkish Ottoman Empire. During the 1914 – 1918 period of World War I, the Ottoman Empire was allied with the German Kaiser Wilhelm, ruler of Germany, who went down to defeat. The British general Edmund Allenby captured Jerusalem in December, 1917. In 1922, the League of Nations, of which the United States was not a member, approved a British Mandate over, among others, Iraq, Palestine and Transjordan (now Jordan). Iraq later became a monarchy, before becoming a military dictatorship, and Jordan was recognized as independent in 1928. However, independence for the Palestinians was deferred by British politicians, among them Win-
ston Churchill and Lord Balfour, amidst the clamor of spurious Zionist claims to the territory. Under the influence of European Zionists, Lord Balfour’s wife urged her husband to make an exception in the case of Palestine. In 1916, an “ambiguous” political accord was reached between Henry McMahon, British High Commissioner in Cairo, and Husayn ibn Ali, sherif of Mecca, in which the Arabs were led the to believe the British would support creation of an independent Arab state to include Palestine. On November 2, 1917, the British instead issued the unilateral Balfour Declaration. The League of Nations Mandate of 1919 mandated only “the rendering of administrative assistance and advice” in the former Ottoman territories during their transition to independent states. Britain’s Balfour declaration was allowed to violate self-determination, thereby dooming the Palestinians and the world to a century of injustice and violence. With the end of WWI in 1918 and the beginning of the British mandate, Palestinians soon began to see signs of Britain’s caving in to Zionist pressure for increased immigration into Palestine. In 1919, Syrian officials in Damascus, who had been allied with the British against the Ottomans in the war, petitioned for independence for a Syrian state that would include Palestine, demanding a rejection of the Balfour Declaration. In 1920 the Arab leader of the 1916 – 1918 revolt against Ottoman rule, Emir Faisal (later Faisal I, King of Iraq) was declared king of this Syrian state. He categorically rejected the concept of a Jewish national home in Palestine. With its usual capacity for shedding onerous responsibilities, the British High Command assigned France its mandate over Syria, whose troops immediately attacked Damascus, deposing Faisal who fled into Iraq. AntiZionist riots by Arab Palestinians burst into flame in April, 1920. More serious riots followed with Britain’s ( May, 1921), announcement that 16,500 Jewish immigrants would be admitted to Palestine. Seizing upon Britain’s failure to enforce population controls, the Zionist brought in additional settlers from Eastern
Europe. The Jewish population of Palestine rose from the original 60,000 to over 400,000 by 1930. Realizing the seriousness of its error, a new British government did consider various proposals for stabilizing the population with an Arab majority. The Arabs resented the hordes who already filled their lands and rejected these new proposals; the Zionists flatly refused to accept any controls on immigration. Palestinian Arabs continued to resist the British-brokered Zionist invasion. In May, 1921, Arab riots in Jaffa left 95 dead and 220 injured. American President Woodrow Wilson declared the U.S. position to be that “one of the fundamental principles to which the United States of America adheres is the consent of the governed.” This led to the U.S. King-Crane Commission report and its recommendations for resolving the growing violence in Palestine, with respect to which the report concluded: “Decisions, requiring armies to carry out, are sometimes necessary, but they are surely not gratuitously to be taken in the interests of a serious injustice. For the initial claim, often submitted by Zionist representatives, that they have a ‘right’ to Palestine, based on an occupation of two thousand years ago, can hardly be seriously considered . . .In view of these considerations, and with a deep sense of sympathy for the Jewish cause, the Commissioners feel bound to recommend that only a greatly reduced Zionist program be attempted by the Peace Conference, and even that, only very gradually initiated. This would have to mean that Jewish immigration should be definitely limited, and that the project for making Palestine distinctly a Jewish commonwealth should be given up.” Neither Britain or France gave much credit to the report, and U.S. decision to stay out of the League of Nations rendered its findings moot. In the early years of the British Mandate, Israel’s first terrorist group, the Haganah, a covert, illegal, paramilitary group of terrorists trained by a British officer,
was formed to commit carefully planned acts of sabotage and violence against Palestinians under the guise of a Jewish defense force. It backfired on the British themselves. To unite Arab opposition to the aggressive, essentially uncontrolled Jewish immigration into their lands, the Arab High Committee was formed by Haji Amin al-Hsayni, Grand Mufti (Chief Judge) of Jerusalem. A civil war followed. Conscious of the growing concern among the Allies over the Palestine violence, in 1936 the British appointed another Royal Commission, headed by Lord Earl Peel, former Secretary of State to India, to “determine the cause of the riots” and judge the merits of grievances on both sides. The Peel Commission’s report acknowledged that, contrary to its government’s official position, the “dual obligations” it had undertaken to both Arabs and Jews was not “reconcilable”. It concluded that the earlier proposal for a division of the territory and granting of independence to both Arab and Jewish states was the only practicable solution to the violence. This suggestion was not acceptable to Palestinians who resented the denial of their inherent right to national self-determination and the forced colonization of their land by minority non-Palestinians, nor was it acceptable to the Zionists, totally committed to a completely Jewish Palestine. The fighting continued. Britain, in enforcing of its essentially illegal Balfour Declaration, was forced to side with the Zionists in deporting and executing Arab leaders on the Palestinian side. By the end of 1938, Britain had handed out 38 death sentences to Palestine resistance leaders. In 1939, just prior to the Battle of Britain when it found itself otherwise occupied, Britain made its last serious attempt to repair the terrible damage it had wrought in Palestine. The London Round Table Conference and White Paper of that year promised establishment within ten years of an inde-
pendent Palestinian state retaining an Arab majority. The White Paper of 1939 also limited Jewish immigration to 1,500 per month through 1944, after which date Jews would no longer be admitted to Palestine. The Zionists were furious. In response, they transferred their political activities from Britain to the United States, and began their major lobbying efforts in the U.S. Congress. In their Biltmore Conference in New York in May, 1942, they demanded formation of an independent Jewish commonwealth in Palestine, a stance that at once attracted wide endorsement from U.S. politicians conscious of growing number of Jewish refugees and Jewish political power in the U.S. In his 1998 article “The Chosen People”, Professor Paul Eidelberg, a noted Jewish historian, wrote: “Whereas the Torah created the Jewish people before they had a state or land of their own, Gentile religions were superimposed on pagan nations.” Despite the well-known fact that the Jewish people had no special, exclusive historical connection with the territory of Palestine prior to about 1,300 B.C., the postWorld War I League of Nations accepted the British, clearly political Balfour Declaration, which stated as its grounds an “historical connection of the Jewish people with Palestine”, but mandating, in its Article 9: “The Mandatory shall be responsible for seeing that the judicial system established in Palestine “shall assure to foreigners, as well as natives, a complete guarantee of their rights” . . . and elsewhere: “ . . . It being clearly understood that nothing shall be done which may prejudice the civil and religious rights of existing non-Jewish communities in Palestine. . .”
Balfour Declaration, December 2, 1917
Winston Churchill, as Secretary for the Colonies, in his 1922 White Paper, echoed this injunction, writing: “For the fulfillment of this policy it is necessary that the Jewish community in Palestine be able to increase its numbers by immigration. This immigration cannot be so great in volume as to exceed whatever may be the economic capacity of the country at the time to absorb new arrivals. It is essential to ensure that the immigrants should not be a burden upon the people of Palestine as a whole.” From Churchill’s writings, it is clear that the British Colonial Secretary understood the obvious: The small land area of Palestine is simply not extensive enough to accommodate unlimited population and growth. It is a fact fundamental to the 80-year competition between the Arabs and the aggressive Jews instigated by the British and U.S. governments. More to the point for Americans, it is the reason that, even if Ariel Sharon, Israel’s bloody right-wing premier, succeeds in his clear intentions to extirpate the West Bank Palestinians by military means, Israel’s growth must forever depend upon the American taxpayer, just as it does today, for its economic and military successes.
II. The Zionists Despite Herculean efforts to manufacture an historical justification for the Jewish presence in Palestine, the plain, unvarnished truth is that, outside of the United States, Canada and England, Zionism is universally recognized as simply a Jewish nationalist movement based on Hertzl’s 1897 call for a “Jewish National Home”. Thus, today’s occupation by millions of European Jews of the Palestinian homelands is internationally viewed with disgust as the immoral and illegal
seizure of Palestinian lands with the active participation of self-proclaimed “rule of law” democracies, led by United States politicians made powerful by the blood and sweat of generations of American non-Jews. Throughout history, the Jews have been noted for their tenacity. This tenacity appears to be born of their ingrained religious conviction that God has chosen them as a people superior to every other race in the world. In his article, “The Chosen People”, Professor Paul Eidelberg quoted Israel’s first Chief Rabbi, Abraham Isaac Kook (1865-1935) as writing: “The denial of our ‘Thou hast chosen us’ vocation and singularity is a fatal blunder. Set apart from the Gentiles, as evident in our incomparable history, the Jewish excellence and nobility surpasses that of any other nation. . .” In many a Jewish mind, they are The Chosen, as described in the 1967 book by Chaim Potok, recently re-affirmed by a New York Orthodox rabbi. These wanderers have been nothing if not tenacious in their quest of Palestinian lands. From 600 B.C., the time of the Babylonian Exile, a succession of suedo-messiahs had advocated return of Jews to their mythical “homeland”. In the late 16th century, a wealthy Italian-Jewish family – the Nasi – obtained a permit from the Turks to establish a Jewish community in Galilee. It was not until 1897, though, that the secular, non-Jewish world heard the term, Zionism, from Theodor Hertzl’s World Zionist Congress at Basel, Switzerland. Although Theodor Hertzl and others in the 19th century Jewish nationalist movement are credited with founding Zionism, it actually dates much earlier. The Jewish bible speaks of the Jews longing for Zion (Jerusalem). In 1896, writing in Der Judenstaat (The Jewish State), Hertzl mentions Argentina as well as Palestine as possible sites. In the 1905 Congress, one group withdrew when a British proposal for establishment of a Jewish homeland in Uganda was rejected. It was the Zionists who sold the west the concept of the “Jewish national homeland” in Palestine. Through their per-
sistent lobbying of foreign governments in the19th and early 20th century, vast financial support from international financiers such as Edmond de Rothschild, and the alleged sympathy of the wife of Lord Balfour for the Zionist cause, British politicians were persuaded to support Lord Balfour’s declaration permitting large-scale immigration onto Palestinian lands. Arab protests were met with the customary arrogance of bureaucrats in colonialist positions of power.
III. Partition of Palestinian Lands The Mandate remained in force until the British abandoned it in 1948. In December, 1947, after years of violence by Jewish terrorists, the British army announced their withdrawal from Palestine by May 15, 1948. The United Nations, successors to the League, began their doomed discussions of possible partition, long advocated as the practical solution to Zionist claims, and creation of the two states of Israel and Palestine. Some political leaders of the period understood the grave injustice being done Palestinians. An equal division of the area, partition, long debated by politicians, was suggested as a remedy. Both Arabs and Zionist leaders were adamantly against it. At the outset of the discussions, a majority of member nations opposed the arbitrary taking of Palestinian lands. In his “Palestine and Israel: A Challenge to Justice” John Quigley wrote that the United States had “supported partition and asked the General Assembly to delay its vote to gain time to bring certain Latin American” members into line with its views. Some U.N. Delegates charged U.S. officials with diplomatic intimidation”. “Without terrific pressure. . . on governments which cannot afford American re-
prisals. . .the resolution (to split Palestine) would never have passed.” Without aggressive U.S. pressure, partition of Palestinian lands would never have been approved by the infant United Nations. As would so often happen in the future, it was the bald use of U.S. economic power in back room deals by interested politicians that promoted the future genocide of the Palestinian peoples, and guaranteed the future retaliation realized in the attacks on the World Trade Center in New York. When asked about America’s support for partition, then President Harry Truman was characteristically candid: “I’m sorry gentlemen, but I have to answer to hundreds of thousands who are anxious for the success of Zionism. I do not have hundreds of thousands of Arabs among my constituents.” To Truman, as with so many other of our representatives since, it was not an issue of morality or justice, or even a 1st Amendment issue of separation of church and state, it was a simple matter of political expedience. Thus, although it later abstained from the vote admitting the state of Israel into the U.N., the United States was, in this view, directly responsible for the partition and later destruction of Palestine. As drafted by its members, the 1947 U.N partition plan gave the Israelis political control, even though the Jewish state was still populated by the majority original Arab inhabitants of the land,. “The action of the United Nations conflicted with the basic principle upon which the world organization was established, namely, to uphold the right of all peoples for self-determination. By denying the Palestine Arabs, who formed the two-thirds majority of the country, the right to decide for themselves, the United Nations had violated its own charter,” observed Sami Hadawi, a Palestinian diplomat and historian, writing in 1990 in “Bitter Harvest”. In December, 1947, before the British withdrawal, Palestinians began a general strike against the impending partition of their homeland. The violence quickly
expanded into civil war. In “Palestine, The Arabs and Israel” British author Henry Cattan wrote: “Before the end of the mandate and, therefore before any possible intervention by Arab states, the Jews, taking advantage of their superior military preparation and organization, had occupied. . . most of the Arab cities in Palestine before (the mandate’s end) May 15, 1948. Tiberias was occupied on April 19, 1948, Haifa on April 22 , Jaffa on April 28, the Arab quarters in the New City of Jerusalem on April 30, Beisan on May 8, Safad on May 10 and Acre on May 14, 1948. In contrast, the Palestine Arabs did not seize any of the territories reserved for the Jewish state under the partition resolution.” As early as 1936, David Ben-Gurion, future prime minister of Israel, had warned that once established as a state, Israel would not be bound by any possible partition of Palestine. “After we have become a strong force,” he stated prophetically, “we shall abolish partition and expand into the whole of Palestine.” Menahem Begin, leader of the notorious terrorist Irgun forces and later Prime Minister, falsely claimed the 1948 war began after Arab armies entered Palestine after May 15, 1948. However, Israeli author Simha Flapan tells a different story in describing the April 9, 1948, Deir Yassin massacre of Palestinian civilians by Israeli soldiers in “The Birth of Israel”: “For the entire day of April 8, 1948, Irgun and LEHI soldiers carried out the slaughter in a cold and premeditated fashion. . . The attackers ‘lined men, women and children up against the walls and shot them.’. . .The ruthlessness of the attack on Deir Yassin shocked Jewish and world opinion alike, drove fear and panic into the Arab population, and led to the flight of unarmed civilians from their homes all over the country.” Zionist historians have tried to show the Jewish atrocities during the so-called “War of Independence” (as if the Jews had been singled out for British and Arab
oppression) were simply Jews trying to defend their right to exist. In his “Image and Reality of the Israel-Palestine Conflict”, Norman Finkelstein exploded this myth. “By 1948, the Jew was not only able to ‘defend himself’ but to commit massive atrocities as well. Indeed, according to the former director of the Israeli army archives, ‘in almost every village occupied by us during the War of independence, acts were committed which are defined as war crimes, such as murders, massacres, and rapes.“ Uri Milstein, the authoritative Israeli military historian of the 1948 war, goes one step further, maintaining that ‘every skirmish ended in a massacre of Arabs’. Following the U.N. vote to partition, the state of Israel immediately began receiving military and economic aid from governments, wealthy individuals in the United States, financiers, Hollywood studio heads, and from Zionists around the world. As unrestricted immigration soared, it soon became clear the nation could not be self-supporting. Without unattainable increases in agriculture, industrial capacity and national infrastructure to match forced population increases, it must always be dependant on others. Thus, its constant worldwide appeals to Jews for aid. The Palestinians, who could make no such international appeal, received comparatively little military and foreign aid and support, either from nonArab or Arab countries. As a result, they were unable to achieve equal or competitive economic status with the U.S.-supported Israel.
The Population Bomb
Despite its well-founded concerns, the British colonial administration under Churchill had failed to provide for enforcement of the proposed limits on
population required by both the Balfour Declaration and the British Mandate. In 1922, at the time of the Mandate, there were living in Palestine about 60,000 Jews (a large number of whom had arrived from Europe after 1880), 100,000 Christian Arabs, and 500,000 Muslim Arabs. Large numbers of these 60,000 Jews had arrived in Palestine after 1880 in response to recruiters from the World Zionist Congress for establishment in Palestine of a Jewish National Home. During the Mandate prior to 1948, the Jewish population increased ten times, to 600,000, largely through immigration from central and eastern Europe. Later, more than 127,000 additional Jews were settled on Palestinian lands, the so-called “occupied territories” following Israel’s 1967 illegal invasion of Palestine in violation of its good faith agreement under the United Nations Charter. From 1989 to 1996, 550,000 Russian immigrants were brought in. The consequence was that from about 60,000 Jewish Arabs in 1918, there are today not fewer than 6.5 to 7-million settlers in Palestine, most of them non-Arab, foreign immigrants, that have poured into a land area roughly the size of the state of New Jersey, a reality that is in direct violation of the stipulations in every legal document imposing a Jewish presence on Palestinian lands. As a people who were part of a defeated Turkish nation at the end of World War I, the Palestinians had no say in decisions that placed them under the authority of the British government. However, by the 1947 U.N. plan to partition Palestine, they were able to get help from other Arab nations in opposing the plan in the United Nations, arguing that the experience with the League of Nations Mandate had shown that the Jews were determined, as Ben-Gurion declared in 1936, to populate all Palestinian territory and could not be depended upon to comply with such international agreements. Despite their pleas, the United Nations persisted in the partition, in division of Palestinian lands into Israel and Palestine, thus setting the stage for genocide and the extirpation of the Palestinian peoples. No acts by either the now defunct League of Nations or the functionally impot-
ent United Nations prove with greater clarity the folly of expecting such international political bodies to guarantee a national peoples’ equal treatment and justice. IV. The Palestinian Genocide Well before the British withdrawal from its Palestine Mandate in May, 1948, the Zionists were quietly importing and preparing a military force partly armed with U.S. weapons, trained by U.S. Jewish and non-Jewish mercenaries, with U.S. volunteers among its troops. These troops, well armed and well-organized; and coordinated by World War II veteran officers, seized upon the general strikes by civilian Arabs to invade the undefended territories granted to the Palestinians under partition. Much of these details were totally ignored by the vaunted American “free press”. Due in no small part to “liberal” reporters’ sensitivity to the Zionist version of the “Jewish Holocaust”, the standard pro-Israel version that continues to form the basis for middle-America’s understanding of these events, their reports were that the “young state of Israel fought off ‘the overwhelming hordes’ of five Arab countries”. They wrote nothing about the massive military aid and previous Israeli army strikes against hundreds of unarmed, Palestinian villages and the fleeing of hundred of thousands of inhabitants. This was the popular Hollywood version framed by influential Jews and their well-meaning partisans. As usual, where Israel has been concerned, the facts were far different. Following the invasion of Palestinian territory by the Israeli “Defense” Forces, the Arab League called for its members to send troops to the aid of the Palestinians being massacred in villages such as Deir Yassin. The Arab
armies’ good-faith orders were to “secure” only those areas granted to Palestine in the partition. The Arab armies were small and ill equipped. They were poorly organized and lacked a single plan or unified leadership. Jordan’s King Abdullah, leader of the Arab Legion, acknowledged to be the only real fighting force among the Arabs, withheld his troops from attacking territories granted Israel in the partition. After Zionist Israel’s 19 years of continued violence against Palestinian targets culminating in its first strike attack on the Arab Republics in 1967; its subsequent occupation of Palestinian territories was the last straw for the Palestinians. Again, the common view falsely instantly broadcast as fact by pro-Israel journalists dominating U.S. news sources , was that the Arab forces invaded Israel first. Only later did the Israelis quietly admit they struck first, based on their unsupported suspicions that their Arab neighbors were planning an attack. This admission was played down in a U.S. press that obviously preferred the earlier version. Arab and Palestinian leaders denied Israel’s claim that they intended any such attack and repeatedly protested to the United Nations, which finally issued its Resolution 242, as it was required to do under the U.N. Charter’s Article 2. Article 2 prohibits any member’s taking and holding territory of any country by military force. The Resolution, endlessly debated by U.S. politicians over 35 years, was never enforced despite repeated Arab warnings of serious consequences for Israel and the United States if the illegal occupation of Palestinian territory continued. While resolutions on Bosnia, Kosovo and Iraq got full political and military honors, Palestinians civilians were ruthlessly murdered. U.N. Resolution 242, approved November 22, 1967, by members of the Security Council, in “expressing its concern with the grave situation in the Middle East”,
emphasized the inadmissibility of the acquisition of territory by war, and further emphasized the Resolution was made in accordance with Article 2 of the U.N. Charter signed by all members, including Israel. Chapter 1, Article 2.of the U.N. Charter states, among other things, that “all members agree to fulfill in good faith the obligations assumed by them in accordance with the present Charter”, and that they “refrain in their international relations from the threat or use of force against the territorial integrity or political independence of any state . . .” Even before U.N. Resolution 242, Israel reneged on its sworn “good faith” pledge that it made in order to become a member of the United Nations. In his televised address to the American people after the 1957 Israeli invasion of Suez, President Eisenhower asked: “Should a nation which attacks and occupies foreign territory in the face of United Nations disapproval be allowed to impose conditions on its own withdrawal?. . .I do not, myself, see how this could be reconciled with the Charter of the United Nations. The basic pledge of all the members of the United Nations is that they will settle their international disputes by peaceful means, and will not use force against the territorial integrity of another state. . .If the United Nations once admits that international disputes can be settled by using force, then we will have destroyed the very foundation of the Organization. . .I would be untrue to the standards of the high office to which you have chosen me, if I were to lend the influence of the United States to the proposition that a nation which invades another should be permitted to exact conditions for its withdrawal.” Lyndon Johnson was the first postwar president to succumb to intensified Zionist lobbying, conceding Israel’s argument that it could impose conditions on its withdrawal from occupied territories. But the worst blunder was by President Carter. Menachem Begin, one of the well-known, right-wing Israeli political lead-
ers who came to power through “terrorism” extracted from Carter a promise that the U.S. would not support Resolution 242’s requirement that Israel withdraw it troops from Palestinian lands and would refrain from using the term “a Palestinian homeland” When Carter weakly tried to reason with Begin, telling him that a refusal to comply with the U.N. Resolution on grounds it would threaten Israel’s “security” would in fact be “a formula for insecurity” (as it later proved to be), Begin told him that “Israel would never relinquish sovereignty over the West Bank and Gaza”. Carter’s failure to rebut this ominous declaration by Begin was widely interpreted as his acquiescence to the Israel position, and certainly contributed substantially to the subsequent tragedies in Palestine, Israel and the United States. Presidents Reagan and Bush, Sr., both later tried to repair the damage done to U.S. diplomacy by Johnson and Carter, reaffirming U.S. support for implementation of 242. Then, during peace talks in June, 1993, came President Clinton’s “legalistically ambiguous”, draft paper suggested as an “Israeli-Palestinian declaration of principles” which “abandoned any commitment by the United States to honor the original concept of 242”, thus, paving the way for the violation of the Oslo accords and guaranteeing the Palestinian genocide and September 11th. As stated by David Paul, a writer and documents librarian at Harvard College, “By incorporating these provisions, Oslo II rescinds the position of virtually the entire world that the settlements are illegal and that Israel has no claim to the territories acquired by force in 1967. . .” In short, the U.S. under the Clinton administration’s limp-wrested policies, and Israel, stood alone against all the other nations of the world on the question as to whether Israel must withdraw from illegally held Palestinian territories, including the West Bank, as required by U.N’s 1967 Resolution 242. Thus, a major role in bringing on the disaster of September 11, 2001, should be laid directly at Clinton’s , and his Cabinet members’, door.
Nor are claims by the current administration credible that it had no warning from the Arabs prior to the attacks on the World Trade Center. Palestinians and their sympathizers have demonstrated at the U.N. in New York repeatedly over a period exceeding 50 years; and Arab ministers and representative have warned again and again that the military aid and participation of U.S. citizens among the troops of the murderous Israel Defense Force constituted an illegal aggression against the people of Palestine. Following the early imposition of Zionists upon the Palestinian homelands by Britain, The Zionists, not yet militarily strong enough to seize the lands of their neighbors, patiently bided their time. Their interim pretense of coexistence was to set up a land-buying agency and to begin buying land from the Palestinians. However, by 1940, or roughly about the time Zionist fundamentalist terrorists began their major terrorism campaign against the British and Palestinians, their director of the Jewish National Land Fund, Joseph Weitz, wrote: “It must be clear that there is no room for both peoples in this country.” He went on to describe the land-buying scheme and concluded: “. . .but this will not bring about the State of Israel, that must come all at once. . .and there is no way besides transferring the Arabs from here to the neighboring countries, to transfer them all; except maybe for Bethlehem, Nazareth and Old Jerusalem, we must not leave a single village, not a single tribe. . .” In 1998, the Israeli historian, Benny Morris, in describing the early occupation of Palestine by the Israelis, wrote: “While the Yishuv’s leadership formally accepted the 1947 Partition Resolution,” the Israelis, led by Ben-Gurion “were unhappy with partition” (which they had agreed to) and “viewed the war as an ideal opportunity to expand the new state’s borders beyond the earmarked partition boundaries and at the ex-
pense of the Palestinians.” In his “The Birth of the Palestinian Refugee Problem, 1947-1949”, he wrote:
“Ben-Gurion clearly wanted as few Arabs as possible to remain in the Jewish state. He hoped to see them flee. He said as much to his colleagues and aides in meetings in August, September and October . But no [general] expulsion policy was ever enunciated and Ben-Gurion always refrained from issuing clear or written expulsion orders, he preferred that his generals ‘understand’ what he wanted done. But while there was no ‘expulsion policy’, the July and October  offensives were characterized by far more expulsions and, indeed, brutality towards Arab civilians than the first half of the war.” Estimates of the numbers of civilian Palestinians driven from their homes and businesses in their own lands from 1947 – 1949 vary from 700,000 to well over 1million. The Israelis now admit the exodus of Palestinians from their homes and villages into refugee camps in neighboring countries was inspired by the violence committed on them in Lydda and Ramaleh and Deir Yassin in the war of 19471949. Nevertheless the present Israeli government and its American supporters refuse to accept responsibility for the refugee problem created by U.S.-supported Zionist atrocities in the name of religion. As of the year 2001, there were 1.3-million refugees in the refugee camps. Israel now says its actions were in self-defense. However, from statements made by its leadership, it is clear the objective was to drive Palestinians from their native lands in what became known by the code word “transfer”. The idea was to “transfer” every Palestinian Arab from their homeland to surrounding countries such as Jordan and Lebanon, and if they would not “transfer”, to kill them, in the creation of a more powerful Jewish Israel.
Destruction of homes and villages was carried out even before the legal end to British administration on May 15, 1948. On April 10, 1948, Israeli army units attacked the Palestinian village of Abu Shusha and bulldozed it that night. Others followed: Khulda, Abu Zureiq, Al Mansi and An Naghnaghiya. By mid-1949, 350 depopulated Palestine villages were partly or completely in ruins and uninhabitable. Ariel Sharon, current prime minister of Israel whose familiar sobriquet is “the bulldozer” but should more properly be “the butcher”, was a platoon commander in the invading forces that alone drove an estimated 300,000 Palestinians from their lands. In October, 1953, Israeli secret death squad “Unit 101’, organized within the Jewish Defense Force by then brigade leader Sharon and under his personal direction and command, murdered 66 civilians during a cross-border raid into the Jordanian west bank village of Qibya. The local residents, under heavy machinegun fire, were driven back into their homes that were then blown up with explosives, killing the occupants or burying them alive in the rubble. A U.S. State Department demand that those responsible be “brought to account” was ignored, and no further steps to discipline Sharon were taken. Instead, according to Jeffrey Steinberg, writing in the May 17, 2002, issue of Executive Intelligence Review, in 1955-56, Sharon’s units raided into Egyptian Gaza and West Bank Jordan, killing 83 civilians in the village of Qalquilya. In the 1956 invasion of the Suez Canal, Sharon’s units murdered 273 Egyptian prisoners of war and Sudanese civilian workers. All were executed and dumped into mass graves. On November 4, 1948, by Resolution S/61, the United Nations voted one of 146 Resolutions in its two Councils between that date and September 24, 2002, requiring Israeli forces to withdraw from Arab territories and otherwise restore rights and property. 42 were vetoed by the United States. Security Council Resolution 194 affirmed the Palestinians right of return to their homes and property.
The resolution has since been re-affirmed and ignored 28 times by Israel. The resolution mandated the right of return. “Whereas the moral and political right of a person to return to his place of uninterrupted residence is acknowledged everywhere, Israel has negated the possibility of return [and] systematically and juridically made it impossible, on any grounds whatever, for the Arab Palestinian to return, be compensated for his property, or live in Israel as a citizen equal before the law with a Jewish Israeli.” (While the current U.S. Administration complains of Iraq’s failure to comply with16 U.N. Resolutions, it ignores the fact that Israel, with U.S. encouragement, ignores hundreds by both U.N. Security and General Assembly.) Such is the ingrained prejudice of western journalists that the 1947-1949 Arab-Israeli war is most frequently referred to as having been started by the Arab armies’ entry into Palestine on May 15, 1948. But according to a Palestinian born in Jerusalem, Sami Hadawi, in his “‘Bitter Harvest’. . .that was the second phase of the war; they overlook the massacres, expulsions and dispossessions which took place prior to that date and which necessitated Arab states’ intervention.” Forget Rwanda. Forget Bosnia. Forget Kosovo. Since the Israeli attacks on the Arabs began 55 years ago, Palestine has been subjected to the most effective, most prolonged, ethnic cleansing of any nation in modern times. Millions of Palestinians have died in war and violence, from hunger and poor medical attention, or languished in refugee camps for generations, while the U.S. Congress annually lavishes billions in working class American’s taxes on Israel, a nation the size of New Jersey, the single, largest recipient of U.S. foreign aid among all the needy nations of the world. From the end of World War I until this day, the world’s politicians and their governments have tacitly approved or failed to act upon Israel’s destruction of
Palestine and Palestinians over a period of 55 years. The difference between the Palestinian and other genocides is the support for Israel by such U.S. rich and powerful as Ronald Lauder of the cosmetic Lauders; Bertram and Herbert Zweibon; Henry Kissinger, Richard Nixon’s Secretary of State; Irving Moscowitz, a California and Florida bingo parlor entrepreneur; Manhattan District Attorney Robert Morgenthau; and Anti-Defamation League of B’nai Brith general counsel Arnold Foster, among others. The winter of 1949 was a hard one for more than 50,000 newly homeless Palestinian refugees huddled in tents, caves or abandoned buildings. Many of the starving men, women and children were within sight of their own vegetable gardens and orchards in occupied Palestine. Earlier, in 1945, President Truman, heavily influenced by the wife of the late President Roosevelt, called for the British to open Palestine to 100,000 homeless Jews. (Her fabled humanism and sense of justice appears to have failed her in the case of the 750,000 homeless former residents.) In late 1949, the U.N. finally acted to take over administration of 60 refugee camps and provide belated relief. For many Palestinians, it was too late. Ironically, in that same year Israel applied for admission into the United Nations. In its resolution granting admission, the U.N. stated: “Recalling its resolutions of 29 November 1947 (on partition) and 11 December 1948 (on reparation and compensation), and taking note of the declarations and explanations made by the representative of the Government of Israel before the ad hoc Political Committee in respect of the implementation of the said resolutions, the General Assembly. . .decides to admit Israel into membership in the United Nations.” In other words, they had it in writing: in exchange for membership, Israel would abide by the territorial divisions established under the partition and repatriate
and compensate Palestinians for lost properties, lives and livelihoods; and on that basis, was being admitted into the United Nations. Nothing in the resolution was conditioned on a Palestine peace on Israeli terms, as has since been used by the Israelis to excuse their non-compliance. On May 12, 1949, Walter Eytan, head of the Israeli delegation to the U.N. conference in Lausanne, Switzerland, signed a joint protocol pledging repatriation and internationalization of Jerusalem. He later admitted: “My main purpose was to begin to undermine the protocol of 12 May, which we had signed only under duress of our struggle for admission to the U.N. . . Refusal to sign would. . . have immediately been reported to the Secretary-General and the various governments.” Thus, from the very beginning, Israeli diplomats were signing agreements and accords merely to accomplish their objectives, and then refusing to honor their promises on grounds that it conflicted with their own interests. U.N. Resolution 242, passed in 1967 by members of the United Nations in accordance with the U.N. Charter, to which the state of Israel was a signatory, required that it withdraw from all territories taken by military force. Israel did not abide by the Charter as it had agreed to do on its admission into the U.N. and did not withdraw. Instead it imported, at great expense to the American taxpayers in congressionally approved economic and military aid, tens of thousands of Russian immigrants into the West Bank in open defiance of its duty under both the Balfour Declaration and the U.N. Charter. The U.N. did not discipline its defiant member. The U.S. made no objection. On the contrary, it continued to pour money for tanks, airplanes, and “weapons of mass destruction”, into Israel; and to support the illegal construction of vast, expensive developments in the occupied territories. The resolution was never enforced and continues unheeded by Israel to this day, despite U.N. enforcement, with unstinting support of the U.S.
military under cover of N.A.T.O., of many later resolutions affecting other political and religious zones, such as in Kosovo, Bosnia, and others. Again, as reported in demands for criminal investigation of Sharon’s actions by both Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch, troops under Sharon’s command were specifically ordered to stand by while allied Falangist (Lebanese fascist) paramilitary forces were permitted to conduct a 62-hour killing rampage in the Lebanese refugee camps of Sabra and Shatilla between September 16 and 18, 1982. Israeli sources estimate the dead between 700 and 800 people killed. Palestinian sources say their casualties were 19,025 dead, with 30,032 civilians wounded. Sharon dubbed it “Operation Peace in Galilee”. According to a Human Rights Watch report dated June 23, 2001, calling for an investigation of the atrocities, “The victims included infants, children, women including pregnant women), and the elderly, some of whom were mutilated or disemboweled before or after they were killed”. The report quotes Thomas Friedman, an Israel correspondent for The New York Times as saying: “I saw groups of young men in their twenties and thirties who had been lined up against walls, tied by their hands and feet, and then mowed down gangland-style with fusillades of machine-gun fire.” This time not even Israeli coverups could save Sharon. A British Broadcasting Company news report confirmed that: “Sharon was removed from office as minister of defense in 1983 by an Israeli tribunal which found him ‘directly responsible’ for the killing of hundreds of Palestinians in two refugee camps under Israeli control”. Following its investigation, the Knesset, forced by international expressions of outrage, gave Sharon a slap on the wrist and relieved him of his command as Defense Minister. 19 years later, Sharon, with the blessing of the Israeli people and their U.S. supporters, was to outdo himself in the bloody destruction of human life. If there had not been a long history of 55 years of death and expulsion of Palestinian civilians by the U.S.-backed, militarily superior Israeli army, the Is-
raeli propaganda version of what happened in Jenin in Early April, 2002, might be more credible. A week earlier, a Palestinian had walked into an Israeli hotel and detonated a bomb, killing himself and 28 Israelis attending a Passover meal. Sharon, who had regained power in 2001 in an election influenced by hundreds of thousands of newly arrived West Bank settlers on Palestinian lands, immediately ordered his army to attack refugee camps in occupied Palestine under color of “rooting out terrorists”. Jenin was one of the largest of such camps, home to about 13,000 Palestinian civilians. On April 3, 2002, his vastly superior forces, including 1,000 infantrymen, tanks, armored vehicles, bulldozers and American-built Cobra helicopters armed with missiles and heavy machine guns, attacked the refugee camp, in itself a clear violation of international law. These troops, outfitted in U.S. Army issue body armor and protective gear, were attacking unprotected men and boys consisting of a defending force of about 200 Palestinian resistance fighters, armed with small arms, Kalashnikov rifles and explosives. Clearly, the far superior Israeli forces expected to crush the opposition quickly. Instead, they encountered heavy resistance during eight days of furious fighting. Thousands of civilians, the elderly and infirm, infants, women and children, were caught between the Israel Defense Force and the Arab resistance. Nurses who went to the aid of wounded civilians were deliberately targeted and shot by the Israelis. Red Cross and Red Crescent ambulances that attempted to go to the aid of the injured and dying were deliberately turned back by Israel tank and brigade commanders. Civilians, many wounded in the first furious machine-gun and tank canon fire, were denied medical attention by the Israelis until the end of the battle, 8 days later. The Israelis refused to allow U.N. inspection teams into Jenin immediately following the battle. Israeli officials claim this procedure was necessary to security. Palestinians claim this secrecy was to permit Israeli forces
to remove many of the dead civilians and bury them in mass graves. Israeli officials claim the attacks were necessary to (using U.S. President George W. Bush’s very words) “root out terrorists,” claiming the only victims were Arab militants. Survivors claim many of their relatives died who were neither “terrorists” nor resistance fighters. Peter Bouckaert, a Human Rights Watch researcher who had investigated human-rights abuses in Rwanda, Kosovo and Chechnya, was unimpressed by the Israeli claim the attack was justified by the existence of “terrorists” in the legally protected camp. His interview, published on Thursday, April 25, 2002, in the Independent/UK, concluded: “We’ve carried out extensive interviews in the camp, and the testimonies of dozens of witnesses are entirely consistent with each other about the extent and the types of abuses that were carried out in the camp. Over and over again witnesses have been giving similar accounts of atrocities that were committed. Many of the people killed were young children or elderly people. Even in the case of young men, in Palestinian society, relatives are quite forthcoming when young men are fighters. They take pride that their young men are so-called ‘martyrs’. When Palestinian families claim their killed relatives were civilians, we give a high degree of credibility to that.” United Nations Middle East Envoy Jerje Roed-Larsen called it a “blot that will forever live on the history of the state of Israel.” Even George W. Bush’s envoy, William Burns, reacted to the carnage. “It’s obvious that what happened in Jenin refugee camp has caused enormous suffering for thousands of innocent Palestinian civilians,” he was moved to comment. (As this is being written, Sharon’s tanks are again attacking Jenin.) Middle East observers, who have watched Israel’s deliberate destruction of Palestinians since the 1930’s, wonder why the world seems surprised by these latest atrocities. They point to the fact that Zionist leaders again and again have
written and publicly stated that they will never share territory with Palestinians, that despite their unredeemed pledges of mutual coexistence, that their real intention has always been to drive the Palestinians out of Palestine, and if not to drive them out, to kill them. Surely something very strange and inhuman is going on with world leaders in the bloody cause of Ariel Sharon and the state of Israel. Despite all their ongoing investigations in Croatia and Kosovo of genocide reports, not a shovel full of dirt has been turned in the occupied territories to investigate official reports of mass burials of murdered civilians. In consequence, Palestinians have suffered 80 years of foreign occupation; and decimation of their population in years of war, starvation, and disease, forced upon them by the political cowardice and moral failure of the United Nations with the complicity of the American peoples’ representative of both political parties. Our two-generation complicity in the Palestinian genocide and its tragic consequences on September 11th, 2001, is a stain on the honor of the United States of America that can never be removed, regardless of what the future holds for the Palestinian people. At this hour, it has, in the minds of peoples everywhere, all but destroyed the very traditions and institutions that had been known for generations as America.
V. The Long and Winding Road: American Involvement How did we Americans arrive at this tragic pass? At the close of the U.S. involvement in World War I, in reviewing the terrible losses in just 19 months of war -which many argued were unnecessary and unjustified -- the people of a still largely agrarian and individualist society withdrew into an isolationism that sus-
tained them until Pearl Harbor, in 1941. In 1920, the outgoing Democratic Party lost the support of the people in its attempt to get U.S. entry into the League of Nations, the forerunner of the United Nations. Wilson’s candidate for President was defeated in the presidential elections by voters opposed to the plan. The Democrats returned to power in 1930, but for 20 years, the people suffered under successive boom and bust economic times, leading to vastly increased central government intervention in the daily lives of Americans under President Franklin D. Roosevelt. The Works Project Administration, providing federally sponsored flood control, waterways, power dams and other construction projects; the Federal Emergency Relief Act; the National Recovery Act; the Social Security Act, The Securities and Exchange Commission; the Federal Communications Commission; and a host of other federal programs, created new bureaucracies as well as jobs for the people, but also ate deeply into state sovereignty and citizens’ personal privacy, independence and individuality. As feared by its critics, one program, Social Security, originally legislated to be used solely as a financial safety net for retirees was within ten years converted into a national identity number in violation of the Constitution and the privacy of every American, including newborns. At the same time, vast immigrations from Central Europe, Russia and the Balkans, swelled, and changed forever, the population of U.S. cities and rural areas, particularly in the eastern parts of the country. Americans, increasingly obsessed with domestic problems and their ever-changing world, looked inward. Their elected leaders, conscious of the need for votes, rarely strayed far from the domestic cares of their constituencies. It is probably fair to say that, with the exception of the few, pioneering Zionist sympathizers then in the government and the occasional congressional “fact finding” junkets during the 1930’s, the U.S. official government policy paid little serious attention to events unfolding in the
Middle East. There was no general outcry over the League’s irresponsible ignoring the British abuse of its mandate and granting of carte blanche to the British Mandate in Palestine, one of the truly great political blunders, not to say injustices, which, as September 11th, 2002 arrives, has come back to haunt Americans, and the world. There are sound reasons for a strict exclusion of religion from government as required by the establishment clause in the First Amendment, and the U.S. failure to strictly interpret this rule in its mixing religion with politics in recent decades demonstrates for the world the terrible cost of breaking it. Students of world history say that, in the United States, the people may not be entirely to blame. A system where religious tolerance and minority rights are arrogated to the biases of ambitious judges and politicians, rather than left, as the founding fathers itend-ed, to the social conscience of the trusted majority, leaves itself open to abuse by aggressive interests intent upon abusing the laws to promote political or other special agendas, some of which may not be in the best interests of the larger society. While official policy’s attention was elsewhere, private forces were hard at work. Many Jews had arrived in the United States with the heavy immigrations of the last years of the 19th and the early years of the 20th century. Theodor Hertzl and his Zionist philanthropists found an attentive audience in the crowded ghettos of American cities. Nevertheless, prior to 1946 and the conclusion of World War II, there was little official political support for American involvement in Palestine, even among Jewish immigrants. Unlike that of Saudi Arabia, Iran, and other Middle Eastern regions, Palestine had no oil so interesting to politicians. Despite programs for rebuilding Europe and Japan by the Truman and later administrations, the official U.S. Palestine
policy was resolute non-alignment and non-interventionist. Nevertheless, American Zionists were not idle. During the war, a conference held at the Biltmore Hotel in New York in 1942 called for unrestricted immigration into Palestine and ultimate establishment of the area as a Jewish commonwealth. Despite his giving the partition of Palestine aggressive support, Harry Truman, as U.S. President, instructed his ambassador to abstain from the U.N. vote admitting Israel. Despite the U.S. abstention, and although many members had been against partition, admission of the state of Israel won the required support. Some of these supporters later stated they voted for Israel’s admission in order to provide some political control over it. As we now know, if this was the objective, it failed. Its legitimacy profoundly affected the lives of American Jews and non-Jews alike. Millions of religious Jews who had arrived in the United States in the previous decades with the honest intention to assimilate into secular American society, as other nonJewish immigrants had done, suddenly were confronted with a new nationalism intimately tied to their religious beliefs and heritage. Increasingly powerful economic forces were at work: Palestine Economics (actually a quasi-official investment clearing house operated by Israel), Israel Bonds, B’Nai B’Rith International, and others, were soliciting investments and contributions from American Jews, and recruiting them to emigrate to the old “new land” to compete for Palestinian’s homes and farms. Children and youth were educated to view Israel as their “homeland” and, like the young Benjamin Netanyahu, the aggressive Israeli politician, to regard the United States as simply a source of money and education for Zionists and a staging area for Jewish ultranationalists. Although born in Israel, between trips back and forth between the two countries, Netanyahu, briefly Israel Prime Minister in the right-wing Likud party, attended high school and college in the U.S. where his father was a history professor. In a 1997 interview with Johanna McGeary for Time magazine, when asked about his much publicized views on terrorism, he asserted “Nothing justi-
fies terrorism.” Had she been a better interviewer, she might have asked whether he considered the state of Israel “nothing”, since it could never have existed without a decade-long, intensive Zionist terrorism campaign against the British and Palestinians. All of this flew in the face of American common sense, traditional freedom of choice, the writings of Jefferson and Madison, and their hard-fought First Amendment to the Constitution holding their revolutionary new society to be one in which there was a distinct separation between church and state. This they regarded as essential to a society where citizens would be free from the strictures and obligations of doctrinaire religious interference in governance and regulation of the lives of ordinary men and women, as had happened in the colonies under the official Church of England. Israel’s hagiarchal concept of government was in direct conflict with that of the founding fathers’ ideals. Israel was a religious state in which the government exhibited a clear preference for the Jewish faithful over citizens of other religions. It was a nation established on religious grounds. It could not qualify as a separation of church and state. And it was a foreign nation. Ordinary Americans, whose concepts of religious separation are at best hazy, were inclined to be tolerant. During the 10 years of social upheavals in Europe, from the rise of the National Socialists in Germany, the Fascists in Italy, to the destruction of cities and nations during World War II, over 21-million civilians died in assassinations, political prisons and death camps. Of this number, about 5.5 to 6-million were Jews. The balance, Poles, Communists, ordinary anti-Nazi Europeans, political opposition members, underground fighters from Norway to Greece, and tens of thousands of Europe’s Gypsies, died anonymously in mass and individual executions and death camps. According to Grolier Encyclopedia, in Belarus (Byelorussia) alone, about 2.6 million Russian civilians, predominantly Roman Catholics, died between 1941-1943. Jews fortunate enough to escape the
carnage, many of whom ultimately became immigrants to the U.S., admit a sense of guilt at having survived while friends and family perished. Jewish interest groups meanwhile worked tirelessly to promote the “Never Again” mantra, emphasizing Jewish losses in Europe, promoting the 1970’s creation of the Holocaust edifice, effectively muting the world’s protests against Israel’s genocide against the Palestinians. Europe’s genocide against Jews must not be minimized. Nevertheless, the sufferings and deaths of millions of non-Jews consciously has been made the exclusive story of the Jews, with vast sums of U.S. dollars going to memorials, both in the United States and Europe, commemorating the “Jewish Holocaust” to the virtual exclusion of mention or remembrance of the majority Nazi victims. Day by day, month by month, year by year, constant publication of Jewish Holocaust stories and horrendous photographs have very designedly molded the consciousness of generations of the world’s people. (As a result, it is difficult today to find anyone under age 65 who knows or understands the real scope of the atrocities upon the majority non-Jewish victims.— Most currently published reference works in English merely refer to the numbers as 6-million Jews and large numbers of others, reinforcing the Jewish inflated sense of ethnic importance and specialness.) Despite this minimizing of non-Jewish losses and calculated pre-emption of a general European disaster in an cynical and widely successful appeal to gain support for Jewish colonization of Palestine, the sentiment among liberal Americans remained one of an unexamined partisanship. This idyll for American taxpayers was about to come to an end. On November 22, 1963, President John F. Kennedy was assassinated and Lyndon Johnson, his Vice-President, was sworn into office as 36th President of the United States. Johnson and his 88th Congress were the first, but by no means the last or most
generous, to yield to the Zionist lobbyists in behalf of the state of Israel. From the years 1948 to 1955, our total foreign and military aid to Israel had amounted to just $4.2-million. During the recent decade of the 1990’s, military and economic aid totaled $48-billion, a gift of taxpayer’s money from the U.S. Congress to Israel, while the future of Americans’ Social Security and the national health care crises continued to languish in various committees. Additional billions flowed into Israel from American private business and non-profit sources. A complete and honest analysis of the U.S.- Israel public and private financial connection would take weeks and would yield astonishing numbers. Despite frequent Arab warnings and protests over the years, these dollars for death squads were increased in Clinton’s administration. From 1995 to 1997 Israel received $9-billion in economic and military aid; $1.2-billion in economic assistance and $1.8 billion in outright military aid in 1996 alone, a year in which Israel incurred a trade deficit of $194 million. Clearly Congress’ priorities were totally out of joint. There can be no doubt in the mind of any responsible, well-informed person, after September 11th, 2001, the most powerful foreign lobby in the United States Congress was the Israel lobby; that its efforts to manipulate our leadership and public opinion have been more successful than any group in history, including those during all of America’s major wars. That the actions and policies of our country’s elected political representatives have failed again and again to assert America’s vaunted values of fairness and justice in their dealings in the Middle East; that these gross lapses are inexorably linked to the attack of September 11th and to the loss of American lives and liberties. And that the American people’s uncritical support of their government’s unprovoked first strike attacks on sovereign Middle Eastern states has opened to question their commitment to the principles on which their country was founded.
VI. Chasing the Rabbit: The “War” on Terrorism Contrary to the sudden discovery of “terror” in the current Bush administration, terrorism is hardly something that suddenly appeared on September 11th, 2001. Terror has been a weapon used by the many, individuals as well as groups and governments, throughout history. It made its modern media debut in an English press that largely supported the status quo in opposing the French Revolution of 1789. While the Committee of Public Safety under Maximilien de Robespierre, a fundamentalist social reformer, condemned many of those judged to be political enemies of the people, popular British literature of the period purports to show that some French citizens, mostly privileged men and women with nominal political leanings, were executed as well. The English sharply condemned the socalled Reign of Terror that lasted about a year before Robespierre himself was guillotined. Amidst all the self-righteous official condemnation of the French Revolution, however, little was said of England’s own 35 revolutions, insurrections, plots and rebellions, or about the centuries of suffering of the oppressed poor that fueled the hatred that finally inspired them. Thomas Jefferson, as our new government’s envoy to France in 1786, witnessed the early stages of the revolution with which he sympathized, although he did not condone the Reign of Terror. Terror is a bi-product of violence. All violence, whether in a cause good or bad, inspires terror. Violent crime is terror. -- War is naked terror. The American Revolution included acts of terrorism on both sides: the British hanged Nathan Hale at the corner of 43rd and Vanderbilt in New York City, to terrorize the rebels. The rebels in turn terrorized the Tory families in Westchester, burning
homes and killing the King’s sympathizers. The American Civil War saw its share of terror: Quantrill’s Raiders burned and murdered, and the troops of the U.S. Generals Philip Sheridan and Tecumseh Sherman ravished the South with many unnecessary acts of brutal terrorism made upon southern civilian populations. – Weak and unprincipled men call this kind of terrorism war. There are many other kinds of terror: terror imposed by interested, venal, misguided, or merely stupid legislators who hide behind the power of the state to make unpopular, repressive or unjust laws; terror of poverty and helplessness suffered at the hands of the rich and powerful; terror of the citizen suffered under the yoke of overzealous or sadistic civil servants; terror of the weak suffering under the yoke of the strong; terror of the abandoned ill or aged left alone to die in pain and poverty. These are terrors that destroy the lives, not of thousands, but of millions. In modern times the many terrorist acts of individuals and governments alike are a part of the record. To the Nazis, the Resistance were terrorists. To the government of the Soviets, the Hungarian freedom fighters were terrorists. To the British, both the IRA and the Ulster militias were terrorists. Most pertinent here is the fact that Israel itself candidly admits it grew out of years of terrorism against the British and Arab peoples in Palestine. This terrorism was glorified in the Leon Uris book “Exodus”. This it characterizes as its “War of Independence”. During this period, an active participant in the conflict was the Irgun, which the Israelis describe as a Jewish right-wing underground terrorist organization. Irgun committed numerous atrocities against the British and Arabs in Palestine, most prominently launching the 1946 attack on the King David Hotel in Jerusalem, killing scores of British military administrators, their families and Jewish civilians. Menahem Begin, who was then leader of the Irgun, later claimed the hotel had been warned. (This, however, does not explain why a number of Jews
also died in the explosion.) He was later to be elected Prime Minister, to take lunch at Camp David as a guest of President Carter, and to share a Nobel Peace Prize. Both Begin and Ben-Gurion publicly advocated expulsion of all Palestinians from their homelands, by whatever means necessary.
The State of Israel became noted for terrorism early in its history. Ralph Bunche, U.S. representative in the U.N. Trusteeship, reported the assassination of Swedish U.N. mediator Count Bernadotte in September, 1948: “It has been well known the terrorists groups organized to pursue political ends by violent means have existed in territory controlled by provisional government of Israel. Such groups had operated in Palestine during mandate, and were responsible for many hideous crimes committed in name of political objectives. These organizations continued their activities after termination of mandate . . .” Bunche’s report characterized the deaths of the U.N. mediator then working on the partition plan, and a French U.N. observer, as murders. The officials’ vehicle was one of several traveling through the Jewish area of Jerusalem, ostensibly with permission and under the protection of the Israeli government, one of whose officials was riding in the lead car. Bernadotte’s car was cut off and blocked by an Israeli army jeep. Two men in the uniforms of the Israeli army approached, put automatic weapons through the open window and shot the two unarmed occupants to death. The lead car with its Israeli official was untouched. His report described the attackers as members of an arm of the “dissident organization, Lohame Herut Israel “ (fighters for the freedom of Israel), also known as “the Stern Gang”. Secretary Bunche’s report concluded:
“These assassinations constitute a critical challenge from an unbridled bank of Jewish terrorists to the very effort of United Nations to achieve, by means of mediation, a peaceful adjustment of the dispute in Palestine. In a broader sense, they give evidence not only of contempt for the actions of the Security Council, but also of a cynical disregard for the United Nations as a whole. It is clearly imperative that urgent measures be taken to ensure that the aims of the United Nations in Palestine should not be frustrated by criminal bands or by any individuals or groups who might hope to profit from acts of such bands.” Ralph Bunche wrote these words September 28, 1948. To date, no such urgent measures have been taken to prevent Israeli “defense” forces from killing Palestinians, and blowing up or bulldozing their homes and villages. The Hollywood romance, Exodus, adapted from the Leon Uris book, documents, in a carefully slanted way, the terrorist activities which, from the late 1930’s until 1948, harassed and ultimately succeeded in wearing down the British will to administer the Palestine Mandate, with which, in any case, the Zionist administrators never fully complied. In these times, when an American President has declared a war on terrorism, it is well to remember that Israel was the initiator of the terrorism of which it complains today. Today, the Irgun is part of the Israel “Defense Force”, financed by American taxpayers, committing assassinations, bombings, kidnapping and murder against Palestinians. (Tellingly, at this writing, despite its trillion dollar, world-wide search for “terrorists”, this administration has revealed no plans for “rooting out” the remnants of the Irgun, or the Israeli Defense Force, as part of its “War on Terrorism”.)
The Warriors Violence, and its bi-product terror, are particularly worrisome to those among us who have the most to lose by it; are most ambitious of distinction, privilege, and power; and are least secure in the power we have. The rule is: the less popular and more repressive and authoritarian a government is, the more it fears its people. In the loose 2000 U.S. presidential election, an election for the first time brazenly and arrogantly decided by openly conservative and biased justices of the Supreme Court, George W. Bush was declared the winner. A former governor of Texas and son of former President George Bush, he won the election on the strength of contested ballots and electoral votes in a state in which his brother, Jeff Bush, was governor. His father, the former president, made an emergency trip to military bases in Europe to appeal to U.S. military families stationed there to file presumably Florida absentee ballots in behalf of his son. Despite this, the popular vote was won by his Democratic opponent, Albert Gore, by the substantial margin of 543,895, or over half a million votes. As Americans have come to expect, the currently conservative, ideologically bankrupt Supreme Court vigorously defends its clearly unconstitutional fivefour decision. At least two federal district court judges, Judges Posner and Noonan, disagree. (An anonymous journalist wrote that had these same circumstances occurred in the election of a president in some Caribbean or Latin American country, the U.S. would have been the first to condemn it as illegal.) As a result, George W. Bush, who took his oath of office in January, 2001, entered the presidency under a cloud. Among knowledgeable Americans, many worried that his accidental presidency would cost America dearly. He had little preparation for national office. His Texas political background as governor emanated from his family’s strong ties to the oil industry and his father’s experience in the
bureaucracy and relatively unpopular, one-term presidency. His young adulthood is best characterized as irresponsible. His politics are Texas Republican good-old-boy basic, his philosophy parochial and simplistic with a healthy dose of old time religion. He had little experience and less patience with deliberate considerations of complicated social or political issues. He took for his vice-president and advisor a conservative businessman and friend of his father who also came out of the oil industry; and appointed for his attorney general a man who, despite holding a number of offices in his home state of Missouri, has had an unremarkable career culminating in his loss of his senatorial seat to a dead man in the 2000 elections. His choice for secretary of defense was a media happy accountant, Donald Rumsfeld, who had dodged the Watergate bullet in 1972 when then President Nixon appointed his close adviser ambassador to NATO just days before the Washington Post’s exposure of the Watergate conspiracy broke, eventually forcing Nixon out of office to avoid impeachment. After Nixon’s resignation, President Ford brought Rumsfeld back as his Defense Secretary. Until September 11th, 2001, Rumsfeld had led a charmed political life. Despite several relatively undistinguished assays into the political arena, which he used to further his connections in the corporate world, Rumsfeld was essentially a businessman with strong business ties to the weapons industry. During his years in the private sector, he served as chairman of the Rand Corporation, a military think tank. Among his closest friends and advisers was Theodore Forstmann who managed the buyout of General Instrument, giving Rumsfeld a paper profit of $11 million. Forstmann was also a strong supporter of a political advocacy group of which Rumsfeld was one of the directors, Empower America, which The New York Times described as “a home for Washington’s conservative elite”.
For his own personal reasons, Rumsfeld, along with a coalition of interested “liberals” and conservatives in the Congress, was a strong supporter of Ariel Sharon, the blood-drenched Prime Minister whose 55 year military career was dedicated to deadly ethnic cleansing in the West Bank villages of Palestine, including the inevitable murder of infants and children. Sharon, and his many wealthy Zionist supporters in the United States, including Henry Kissinger, were instrumental in destroying the Oslo peace accords signed September 13, 1993, that would have removed the grounds for the Arabs’ attacks in New York in 2001. Palestinians, as well as the Human Rights Watch organization, had called for his indictment as a war crimes criminal comparable to Milesovic, the Bosnian Serb leader accused of war crimes. Bush and the U.S. political right accused Milesovic but defended Sharon and refused to do anything to stop his murderous campaign against the Palestinians. As in past decades, it is Israeli-manned American-built tanks and rockets that are still being used against comparatively unarmed villagers, which murder and destruction is justified by an infinite variety of unproven and creative Israeli claims and excuses. The Palestinians’ reply is for dedicated men and women to strap homemade bombs on their bodies and go among the Israelis to detonate them, or to fire random rockets into the illegal settlements. The Bush Administration, in its dumb and dumber role of imperial bully, approves and continues to finance with taxpayers’ dollars the ethnic cleansing openly conducted by the Israelis, while it sanctimoniously deplores and condemns the pitiful efforts of the Palestinian people to retaliate. Thus, the immense public tragedy of September 11th gave a weak and barely breathing presidency an opportunity and a direction. Taking the advice and
counsel of father and friends, Bush cynically urged the Congress to approve payment of U.S. back dues in the United Nations. Prior administrations had been resisting these dues for decades on grounds that the dues, apportioned on basis of members’ size and wealth, were disproportionately excessive and that UN members who would benefit included undemocratic, repressive regimes. Reversal of this policy was something which, the new president was able to argue to a suddenly pliable Congress, was essential for world support of U.S. interventions contemplated for the Middle East, among them a reprise of the war on Iraq earlier terminated by his father at the urging of the oil cartel, snatching stalemate from victory. Meanwhile from his loss of the popular vote less than a year before, his popularity suddenly rose. Seizing upon American’s shock at the unaccustomed attack on their home turf, and the surprise, fear and uncertainty in the chaos wrought by 19 Arab airline highjackers, he and his advisers found a readymade audience for patriotism. Through the strong cooperation of three major television networks providing daily, repetitious and graphic replays of the hijacked airliners striking the twin towers; through the promotion and well-organized distribution of replicas of Old Glory by the conservative The American Legion magazine to homes and mailboxes; and through repeated calls for patriotism and solidarity in a war against some vaguely defined groups called “terrorists”, the War on Terrorism was born. It was Exodus all over again. In the hours after the attack, the Congress gave Bush a virtual blank check. In a torrent of hasty, poorly considered executive orders and Congressional decisions, a $3 trillion surplus inherited 9 months earlier in the national budget was, by mid-2002, transformed into a deficit still multiplying at this writing. But not to worry: Bush assured Americans the budget would be balanced again by 2006. That is, when the “War on Terrorism”, (which Rumsfeld vaguely warned us was likely to take decades) is won. Is it any wonder then that
Donald Rumsfeld and his friends in the arms industry were smiling for the television cameras?
VIII. What “War”. . . And Which? But who is the enemy? And where is the war? The provisional Afghan government of the Taliban, a former U.S. ally in the opposition to Soviet occupation, was chosen as the enemy. Afghanistan was selected as the primary battlefield. The Taliban was an easy target. They were ultra-fundamentalist Muslims despised by nearly everyone, including other Muslims. Although the Taliban were fierce fighters, their numbers were not large and their weapons limited to small arms. The few tanks and larger weapons the Taliban had earlier acquired as an ally of the U.S., or captured from the Soviets, would be no match for smart bombs and laser guided missiles. What had the Taliban, our recent ally, done that warranted transporting a modern, high-tech, American army halfway around the world and exhausting the national treasure to “root” it out? The Taliban, President Bush assured us solemnly, harbored terrorists. But, asked the loyal opposition, is that grounds for a war? -- and against whom? In the recent past, both major world wars from which we emerged victorious were declared wars against the vast armaments of attacking enemy nations. Japan had the largest navy in the world at the time of Pearl Harbor. Germany, with her air force, airborne shock troops, submarines and mechanized army, occupied most of Europe. Those were real adversaries. In the two undeclared actions, Korea and Vietnam, in which we suffered defeat, one led to real war with that other most powerful
army in the world, China; and the Vietnam war, while not a legitimately declared war, was, as the present one is likely to become, a very serious political miscalculation and a decades-long military blunder. “Oh,” quoth Secretary Rumsfeld as he ordered laser guided missiles and smart bombs from his friends in the defense industry at a million dollars a copy, “This is a different kind of war.” It is, indeed. -- It is the most expensive “war” in history. One which American taxpayers will rue for many years to come. Learning nothing from any of it, President Bush and his Department of Homeland Defense team desperately called for war on the ghostly armadas of “terrorists” poised to invade, by land, sea, and in the air, the lawns and driveways of America. The media fawned and gushed. No one mentioned the statistical reality that most of us were far more likely to die for lack of proper health care, for need of a prescription drug we couldn’t afford, from falling off a stool while replacing a light bulb, or in an automobile collision with some flag-waving moron full of booze or cocaine. On cue, Donald Rumsfeld began his appearances courtesy of the nightly news, again with the indiscriminate cooperation of the three major television networks, with the announcement that Osama bin Laden, the alleged terrorist responsible for the attack on America, was in Afghanistan and a guest of the Taliban. A squintyeyed Rumsfeld assured us through gritted teeth that we would get Osama; that the life of one man was well worth our billions of tax dollars. Today, almost five years later, after the expenditure of more billions, we have all but destroyed Afghanistani and Iraqi civilian populations, including women and children, with our laser-guided missiles and smart bombs, but so far as we know, we have yet to “root out” Osama. The fighting in Afghanistan goes on. In frustration, Messrs. Bush and Rumsfeld sought out other battlefields for their “war”. Pakistan and the Philippines were earmarked for additional millions in the pur-
suit of terrorism as the list of countries harboring terrorists kept growing. Wherever self-determination or dissent reared its ugly head, there the champions of commercial markets and corporate excess were prepared to chop it off with taxpayers’ money. Meanwhile, we all went back to bed. But is it war? Article I, Section 8. of the Constitution of the United States reads: The Congress shall have power, among others: to declare War, etc. Under the Constitution of the United States and its Amendments, the President has no power to declare war. That is for the Congress to decide, based upon the assent of the majority of their constituents. It is clear that the founders intended this section to prevent hyperthyroid leaders from plunging the nation into war at the drop of a shoe bomb. As in America’s many other non-wars approved by easily stampeded Congresses, no formal declaration of war was ever served by the Congress on Afghanistan, the Taliban, or al Qaeda. Thus, plainly and simply, there is no “war”. There are of course the usual lawyerly arguments put forth by the president’s men in every age, that have raged in political circles each time a president and Congress came up against the constitutional provision: That only five of our nation’s 125 military involvements have been under official declarations of war (itself a clear statement of the weakness inherent in the United States Congress); that the Constitution does vest in the president, as commander in chief of the armed forces, the power to take actions he deems necessary to protect and defend the United States; that the president is free to respond if the United States is attacked, and so forth. Their opponents reply that these are the specious equivocations of lawyers, none of which changes the clear law and intentions of the Founding Fathers. In Afghanistan and elsewhere, the U.S. is not defending its own territory, it is illegally attacking another peoples’. Until the current right-wing Congress in its wisdom repeals the Constitution of the United States, or the current Supreme Court in a five to four vote declares the
Constitution unconstitutional, only the people, through their representatives in the Congress, have the power to declare war. And unless war is declared, no state of war can exist. Therefore, the loose concept of a War On Terror is not legitimately a war; if anything, like Korea, it is a “police action”, not against nations but against groups of individuals.-- And the attempt by Bush and his supporters to elevate his ill-considered, reckless and costly actions to the more honorable status of war is simply another amateur ploy designed to extort support for his expensive mistakes from simple minded, gullible people through appeals to their unexamined sense of patriotism. With the defeat of America in Vietnam, after years of gradual military involvement dating back to the late 1940’s and use of U.S. military advisors in the French colonial war against the North Vietnamese Communists, the Congress attempted to close the loopholes used to promote the tragic involvement there. In 1973, it passed the War Powers Act over President Nixon’s veto. While the present Congress waffles and the current supreme court patiently awaits an opportunity to deliver another of its infamous five-four decisions to repeal it, President Bush and his mentor, Vice President Chaney, Secretary of Defense under his father, continue to ignore a law which requires them to notify Congress within 48 hours of sending any number of U.S. forces into hostilities and to withdraw them within 60 days if Congress does not approve. – So much for the power of our diligent lawyers in Congress assembled. In his quest to legitimize a fatally infirm presidency, critics of his policies contend, Bush’s ill-advised rush to judgment burned all his political bridges, such as they were, behind him. Undoubtedly he and his advisors foolishly intended that the unleashing of the bloated forces of the U.S. military, eager for another “mission”, would quickly “root out” and put an end to the “terrorist threat”. Members of the administration now deny this, claiming the President’s action was
taken in full knowledge of the difficulties that lay ahead. Instead, they place the blame for the faltering prosecution of al Qaeda on the delays and confusion in peace-keeping efforts, the intramural disputes between Afghan groups, and so on. Their critics reply that the president is out of his depth. That his response to September 11th was a flawed concept in which no intelligent leader, let alone an experienced statesman, would have rushed to invest the assets of a nation and its people: That the distinction between terrorists and patriots, resistance fighters or revolutionaries, is a fine one, subject to the most judicious interpretation. Clearly, the sponsors of Enduring Freedom find themselves in some confusion as to which way the “terrorists” went. Iraq currently seems the likely direction, although our NATO nations and allies appear reluctant to rescue the senior Bush’s oil war the second time around. Anti-war proponents note that the current U.S. dilemma once again forcefully emphasizes the folly of maintaining vast military establishments left accessible to the discretion of ignorant, impulsive, ambitious or otherwise irrational or irresponsible men and women in times of relative peace. It is a mistake that resulted in Korea and Vietnam, to name only two of the more costly of our post-war adventures whose only benefits devolved upon the weapons manufacturers; and whose cumulative effects were to set back America’s economic development by two generations. As anyone knows who followed Rumsfeld’s ill-starred performances on the nightly news, the new, billion dollar technologically “smart weapons” he peddled to America’s taxpayers quickly began killing civilians; and the timetable for “rooting out” al Qaeda soon began to lengthen. Soon we were hearing from him and his generals that the “rooting out” of terrorists was a difficult, time consuming, messy task that would take longer and cost more; that the initial three months of the action against the terrorists would cost in excess of $3-billion, (by which yardstick we have now invested well over $1-trillion); and that in fact the
growing list of countries harboring al Qaeda groups might take years to deal with in a successful War Against Terrorism. All of this before, as in previous major military appropriations, we even had solid, real world military target to shoot at. . It is clear that Bush and his father’s defense secretary now are trying to distract the nation with talk of war with Iraq and prepare the American people for another long, drawn-out struggle as they begin to understand their blundering has involved the United States in another, ever more costly, Vietnam, with the added burden of supporting Israel at the same time.
IX. The Terrorists are Coming! The Terrorists are Coming! Even his critics admit that no one who has heard President George W. Bush speak in public can doubt his earnestness. It is his sophomoric, politically naïve and invincibly self-righteousness judgment, they say, that is open to question. The best example was his appointment and justification of John Ashcroft as attorney general. Ashcroft’s local political record in Missouri was solid, conservative, and uninspired. And therein lay the problem. A lawyer who graduated from Yale and the University of Chicago Law School, he was the son and grandson of Assemblies of God ministers. His politics and personal views were anything if not predictable. His agendas favored business. Twice elected to governor, he won a senate seat in 1994 only to lose it to the widow of John Carnahan, the Democratic challenger whose name was still on the ballot in 2000. Unlike Donald Rumsfeld, Bush’s other controversial appointment, John Ashcroft did not enjoy the sudden batteries of television lights that have illuminated Remsfeld’s self-promoted public persona. On television, Ashcroft came across as something of a peevish, self-righteous schoolmaster, slightly dazed at finding
himself beset by a nation of unruly children. Although a lawyer, he repeatedly was criticized for making various broad statements and allegations unsupported by evidence or facts. His understanding of the Constitution and the law at times seemed worefully inadequate in an attorney general. He was particularly criticized, and reprimanded by Bush, for his statements and handling of the Padilla “dirty bomb” scare which turned out to be an Ashcroft dud. Even Bush’s allies in the media were unsupportive of Ashcroft. Dick Meyer, editorial director, CBSNews.com in Washington, said in his June 12, 2002, news report captioned “John Ashcroft: Minister of Fear. ‘Its time for President Bush to rein him in’”. The essence of the Meyer report was that, contrary to using his office to create greater security for Americans, Ashcroft’s primary focus was in scaring us with false or unsubstantiated claims of imminent terror in order to gain support of his calls for repressive legislation designed to curtail civil liberties. His work and support of his boss’s Department of Homeland Security has parliamentarians upset. On this point, constitutional law experts say, it is useful to recall the warning implicit in Benjamin Franklin’s 1779 “Historical Review of Pennsylvania”, in which Franklin wrote:“They that can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety.” John Ashcroft and the current Congress and Administration clearly are not on Franklin’s page when it comes to essential liberty—laws are being enacted by the present Congress that future generations will find very difficult to change.
“Those Who Do Not Learn From Their Mistakes Are Doomed to Repeat Them.” So the ancient Athenians reasoned. An equally reasonable proposition would be: Those who refuse to learn from their losses, are doomed to suffer them again. That is the fear that possesses the minds and nervous systems of the accidental president and his gaggle of conservative hawks in their ostensibly well-intended assault upon the hard won civil liberties of Americans. But is it rational? When an existing problem is costing the taxpayers billions in tax dollars, and likely to cost billions more, why not try to resolve it, rather than intentionally exacerbate it? Bush’s critics say that in his zeal to use September 11th to jump-start his presidency, he made exactly the wrong decisions. As a matter of law, those guilty of the actual attacks on America, whatever their reasons, are dead. The one person in custody alleged to be part of the conspiracy insists he played no indictable part in the attack. Even if this man is ultimately convicted as charged, the U.S. has not shown any hard, legally admissible evidence that these groups or individuals were involved. Despite the doubtful status of Bush’s “war”, his current attorney general continues to insist, and the nation’s lock-step news media continue to parrot, that constitutional liberties should be suspended “in time of war”. Federal agencies, including a newly revitalized and internationalized Federal Bureau of Investigation, are given carte blanche to make arrests and detentions on evidence that would be unacceptable in any local state criminal or civil court. Recent belated “discovery” of new bin Laden tapes and other “evidence” has a distinctly home-cooked flavor; and is, in many lawyers’ opinions, inadmissible as trial evidence in a proper court. Hearsay evidence and self-righteous pontificating are not due process. Neither is lynch-law kangaroo court. A more seasoned
statesman than Bush, less obsessed with his own presumed infallibility, would have exercised greater caution in selecting his Attorney General; would have made serious attempts to resolve the clear issues of Israel’s continued genocide against the Palestinians which clearly motivate the attacks; and would have made greater efforts to make impartial judgments, before allowing his advisors to plunge him into the most expensive military action in history.
XI. The Good Son As the nation’s chief and most influential executive, George W. Bush came late, and with little preparation or experience, to the foreign policy game. A graduate of Yale and Harvard Business School, he began his career in the oil and gas business at age 29 in 1975, after what some locals say was a rather checkered early youth. He served twice as governor of Texas. He worked on the Sr. Bush’s successful presidential campaign. His own campaign garnered vastly more political contributions than did his Democratic opponent’s. Among the major contributors, some sources say in excess of $100,000, was Enron, an energy distribution company in which the candidate’s family held a large position of stock, and one which, in 2002, was charged by stockholders with a vast scheme to defraud them. In some future time, U.S. Presidents, from Woodrow Wilson to Bill Clinton, may be tarred with political cronyism, harebrained or interested politics, a neglect of moral duty to oppose injustice, and failure to heed the lessons of history. American Congresses, at least those from the 65th to the 107th, undoubtedly will share history’s indictment for the extirpation of the Palestinian people and the destruction of American democracy. No one will question the fact that the man who became President of the United States in January, 2001, just 9 months later had to confront one of the gravest challenges in the history of the nation.
This was the United States that George W. Bush inherited from William Jefferson Clinton and his wife, Hillary, whom some say were arguably two of the slickest lawyers ever to set Adida in the White House. (Others argued that anyone who didn’t know what the definition of “is” is, couldn’t be trusted with the White House silverware.) This also was the United States that was all the things the governor of Texas never wanted to know about. Chief among the memento mori inherited from the Clintons was the exponential growth in military and economic aid to Israel. Although his father is sure to have warned him of the disproportionate political influence and power Israel’s American supporters had come to wield over the nation’s foreign policy, Bush appeared to hesitate in the weeks following September 11th and bin Laden’s video debut, before finally coming down four-square in favor of Sharon’s genocide. To his credit, the president did hesitate, briefly, before his father, his vice-president and the weapons salesman convinced him that he had to declare war on something or other. (As a more thoughtful leader, he might have asked himself why the members of a minority, fundamentalist religion in a presumably secular society were directing its foreign policy.) A good son, he did as he was told. – And the rest is history.
Within two hours of the impact of the two airliners on the trade center towers, the towers collapsed, greatly increasing the number of victims from the initial numbers who died on the floors first struck by the airplanes (floors 78-84 in the south tower, floors 94-99 in the north tower). In our surprise and shock at the almost immediate collapse, few of us questioned why these modern buildings could not survive the destruction of just 5.4% of their mass. Clearly, New York City’s building codes had fallen victim to innovation, assuring the deaths of thousands of its citizens. (A tragedy the building codes were enacted to prevent.) There had been questions by safety experts over many years, regarding the dangerous trend by regulators to allow developers to build ever higher commercial structures with ever larger human populations in them. A full-page article in the Sunday, November 11, 2001 The New York Times, reported on the collapse under the caption: “Scientists Suspect That Cascade of Failures Caused Collapse of the Twin Towers”, in which fatal weaknesses in the Trade Center’s design were carefully documented by interviews with architects and designers. The Trade Center, completed in 1973, was 110 stories (1,350 ft.) high. Each tower’s controversial construction, known as braced tubular cantilever, was basically a square tube with heavy steel girders running vertically through its center. Even before its approval by city planners, its safety was the subject of controversy. Among the issues raised: its height, the safety of its construction design; its general safety of concept, particularly in the case of a fire, or its being struck in poor visibility by an off-course military or civilian aircraft (as had happened in the 1945 Empire State building disaster); its location which required the re-routing of historic New York streets, disrupting traffic patterns and flow; its size, 1.2million feet of office space; and its vast consumption of resources, energy, waste management, public services, etc. that the proposed center would require.
Through all the careful, politically correct journalism of the post-September 11th period, some of the facts have emerged. In the September 8th, 2002, The New York Times Magazine, an article titled Towering Ambition properly pointed up some of the more egregious failings of the Twin Towers and their sponsors. The buildings were not properly fire-proofed because the construction companies regarded it the responsibility of the architects who apparently failed to provide for it in the plans. A Mafia connected company hired to apply fire retardant to critical supporting parts of the buildings skimped on the application to increase profits. The laws exempted the Buildings’ owners, the Port Authority, from various oversight, including fire codes. No study was ever made of the potential affects of design failure, flash fire or airplane collision. During its lifetime, the Trade Center yielded its owners a reported $30-million a year in profits, yet their appeal to the courts following the collapse of the buildings relieved them of financial liability. Because the center was to be administered jointly by the Port Authorities of New York and New Jersey, it had support among politicians of both states. Add to that, the support of powerful New York Building Trades Unions. Ultimately, its design safety and the other considerations were outweighed by the political and economic pressures brought to bear on the planners. The total construction cost was set at $750 million, a nice plum for the realtors, bankers and unions. Thus was the target of choice for airline hijackers brought to life in the bosom of ambition, greed and corruption that sealed the fate of large numbers of the September 11th victims.
XIII The Warning Ignored In February, 1993, a first attack on the trade center resulted in 6 deaths, 1,000 injuries, and an estimated $600-million in construction damages and business losses. It quickly became public knowledge that the alleged perpetrators of the attack, Arab nationalists, were reacting to the continuing U.S. military support of the Israeli settlements being built on Arab lands in Palestine. It was a desperate bid for United States attention to the plight of the Palestinians and a wake-up call for reasonable men in the administration and Congress to make more serious efforts to bring some equality and justice to a situation which had so seriously degenerated under the decades of ever growing support for Israel in defiance of the dozens of U.N. resolutions and the rights of the Palestinians. In September 1993, following the Oslo accords between the Israelis and Palestinians, President Clinton invited the parties to the U.S. for the purpose of signing the peace agreement, the so-called Declaration of Principles. As Clyde Haberman, correspondent for The New York Times reported in April, 1999: “Israel early showed its disregard for the agreement. Two months after the White House ceremony, on Nov. 25, 1993, Prime Minister Rabin warned that Israel might not be ready to begin its withdrawal from Gaza and Jericho, which was scheduled for no later than April 13, 1994. He said negotiations had failed to satisfy Israel’s security concerns, adding: ‘The date is not sacred . . .’. Israel did not withdraw until May. Since then, no other date has been considered sacred by Israel.” In a special report in July, 1999, the Government of Palestine stated that “The coming to power in mid-1996 of Binyamin Netanyahu basically halted the peace process.” It went on to say that he had failed to surrender lands that Israel had
pledged to withdraw from by July 12, 1994, including all of the West Bank and Gaza, and that “To date, Israel has returned to full Palestinian control only about 3% of the West Bank. . .” No reasonable men appeared in the administration and Congress, and the giving of U.S. taxpayers money to Israel redoubled. While Congress continued to debate the future of Social Security and national health care, and the president’s men continued to berate the United Nations and the Palestinian Authority for failing to bring peace to the region, it continued to finance with billions in the American peoples’ tax monies an ever-increasing stream of tanks, armored troop carriers, fighter jets, attack helicopters, state-of-the-art rockets and bombs and Israel’s nuclear arsenal, destined for use against Palestinian civilians. On September 11th, 2001, George W. Bush proved himself no better than the weakest of his predecessors. Instead of leaping into the breach with true leadership, he lost the momentum to his conservative advisors by default. Certainly, it would have required great political courage to face down a combination of his own political appointees and one of the most powerful and well-organized lobbies in the history of the republic. But he was president: great opportunities demand great courage. Even greater courage is required to admit wrongdoing, and there is not a shred of doubt that the United States, in pretending justice for all, has been wrong in its forty years of championing the immigrant Zionist cause over the rights of the native Palestinian people. In a February 3, 2002, The New York Times Op Ed page, Yasir (Yasser) Arafat, the popularly elected president of the Palestinian Authority and chairman of the Palestine Liberation Organization, set forth a clear solution to the escalating violence in Palestine and Israel, and by extension, the threat of further attacks on America. It must be emphasized here that Arafat’s prediction of greater violence
from Palestinians if reason didn’t prevail has, since his warning, became an excuse for Ariel Sharon to destroy Palestinian lives, homes, businesses, and government offices. Here are excerpts from Arafat’s personal vision: “The Palestinian Vision of Peace: By Yasir Arafat. Ramallah, Palestine. For the past 16 months, Israelis and Palestinians have been locked in a catastrophic cycle of violence, a cycle which promises only more bloodshed and fear. The cycle has led many to conclude that peace is impossible, a myth borne out of ignorance of the Palestinian position. Now is the time for the Palestinians to state clearly and for the world to hear clearly, the Palestinian vision. The Palestinian vision of peace is an independent and viable Palestinian state on the territories occupied by Israel in 1967, living as an equal neighbor alongside Israel with peace and ‘security for both the Israeli and Palestinian peoples. In 1988, the Palestine National Council adopted a historic resolution calling for the implementation of applicable United Nations resolutions, particularly, Resolutions 242 and 338. ‘” Arafat went on to outline his proposal: That the Palestinians were prepared to recognize Israel’s right to exist on 78 percent of historical Palestine territory with the understanding that it would agree that the Palestinians would live in freedom on the remaining 22 percent, and: “. . .In addition, we seek a fair and just solution to the plight of Palestinian refugees who for 54 years have no tbeen permitted to return to their homes. We understand Israel’s demographic concerns and understand that the right of return of Palestinian refugees, a right guaranteed under international law, and United Nations Resolution 194, must be implemented in a way that takes into account such concerns. However, just as we Palestinians must be realistic . . .Israelis too must be realistic in understanding that there
can be no solution to the. . .conflict if the legitimate rights of these innocent civilians continue to be ignored. Left unresolved, the refugee issue has the potential to undermine any permanent peace agreement between Palestinians and Israelis. How is a Palestinian refugee to understand that his or her right of return will not be honored but those of Kosovar Albanians, Afghans and East Timorese have been? “Peace is not a signed agreement between individuals – it is a reconciliation between peoples. Two people cannot reconcile when one demands control over the other, when one refuses to treat the other like a partner in peace, when one uses the logic of power rather than the power of logic. Israel has yet to understand that it cannot have peace while denying justice. “The Palestinian people have been denied their freedom for far too long and are the only people in the world still living under foreign occupation. . .The 1993 Oslo Accord, signed on the White House lawn, promised the Palestinians freedom by May, 1999. Instead, since 1993, the Palestinian people have endured a doubling of Israeli settlers, expansion of illegal Israel settlements on Palestinian land and increased restrictions of freedom and movement. How do I convince my people that Israel is serious about peace while over the past decade Israel has intensified the colonization of Palestinian land from which it is ostensibly negotiating withdrawal? “I condemn terrorism. . .But condemnations do not stop terrorism. To stop terrorism, we must understand that terrorism is simply the symptom, not the disease. “. . .We are ready to sit down now with any Israeli leader, regardless of his history, to negotiate freedom for the Palestinians, a complete end of the occupation, security for the Israelis and creative solutions to the plight of the refugees while respecting Israel’s demographic concerns. But we will only sit down as equals, not as supplicants; as partners, not as subjects; as seekers of a justand peaceful solution, not as a defeated nation grateful for whatever scraps are thrown our way.
For despite Israel’s overwhelming military advantage, we possess something even greater : the power of justice.” Since rejection of Arafat’s proposals for an end to the violence in Palestine and Israel early in February, 2002, Ariel Sharon, smelling blood, has redoubled his efforts at destruction of villages and property, using tanks, rockets and aircraft. Many Palestinian civilians and Israelis have since died. Because the Palestinian people continue to retaliate in the only way they can, through suicide attacks, Sharon has called for removal of Arafat. (Sharon, it should be noted, already had blood on his hands before he took office. His is the same right-wing party as the extremist Israeli student, Yigal Amir, who assassinated the former Israeli president, Yitzhak Rabin, just as Rabin was in the midst of peace talks with Arafat, which Sharon opposed.) Moreover, Brigade leader Sharon has been identified as the Israeli army officer who engineered the 1948 assassination of the Chief U.N. Negotiator Count Bernadotte. Rabin, known as the Peacemaker, a principal in the Oslo peace process, was reportedly on the point of agreeing to return the occupied territories to their owners when Sharon’s political surrogate murdered him. Amir has since confessed that he was a reservist in Sharon’s terror unit, and that he murdered Rabin in order to stop the peace process, an objective shared by his commander. Predictably, a cowed Bush has followed Sharon’s lead in condemning the legitimately elected Palestinian president. As Arafat has pointed out, Sharon has voted against every peace initiative between Israel and the Palestinians since the creation of the state of Israel. From his actions, it is clear that he has no intention of making peace with the Palestinians, and that his sole objective is to maintain the violence for as long as it takes to effectively destroy any vestige of Palestinian rights or property in the occupied territories, thereby creating a single state of Is-
rael (as proposed by the Zionists in their May, 1942 Biltmore Conference in New York).
XIV. A Very Ordinary Man
Since the September 11th attacks, Congress has had to respond to various proposals purported by the President’s men to create new rules, regulations and laws that, it is argued, are needed to protect Americans from further terrorism. (It has been conceded by these men and women that the changes will affect the civil rights of every American, forever.) Apart from taking vast amounts of time and energy from struggling lawmakers who already had more on their plates than they could properly digest, these novel, post-September 11th legislative demands from members of the Administration, tend to be motivated by fear of the unproven and unknown, unspecified and unquantified, and in many instances, probably the unlikely. Their proponents defend them by saying it’s better to be safe than sorry. Their critics say the price is too high; both the price in taxpayer’s already strained resources and in the further erosion of individual liberties, loss of privacy and other constitutional rights and privileges. What good is security, they ask, if it is obtained at the price of liberty and freedom? Aren’t those the things that make life in America worth living ? But what good are liberty and freedom, their conservative adversaries reply, if you’re blown away by terrorists? The clear answer is: We have always known terror.
American pioneers fought the terrorism of the frontier and their unscrupulous fellows. For generations we have fought the wars that made it possible for today’s United States to become a world power. Today we struggle with mounting violence in our city streets. Every year tens of thousands of us die in accidents while traveling our crowded freeways and Interstates. The exercise of freedom and liberty always carries with it the potential for an ultimate price. Liberty and freedom don’t come without it. They are what you get when you have the courage to willingly take a risk. Conservatives, who have that name for a reason, hate risk: they prefer safety to freedom, conformity to liberty. Thoughtful Americans are saying the Constitutional system is already being buffeted by too much irresponsible reinterpretation, too much judicial amendment, too much interest, far too many selective and oppressive laws, and too much political correctness; that unless Americans soon come to their senses, our way of life will finally cease to exist as a democracy, never to be heard from again. John Ashcroft, the U.S. attorney general, who like Supreme Court Chief Justice Rehnquist has his own ideas about what the Constitution of the United States really was meant to say, has a lot of arguments to show that searches and seizures without warrants or judgments, military trial of citizens, military detention of civilian suspects without habeas corpus, and a host of repressive measures, will not affect the rights of the average American and are perfectly o.k. when practiced in defense of home and hearth. Legal experts throw up their hands. Less reform-minded souls suggest that, even if we put half the country into durance vile and shut off immigration altogether, we will still have the problem of that one ocean freight container with its atom bomb, that one foreign airliner, or some other solitary surprise attack, months or even years from now. -- That the prob-
lem will never be fully resolved until the cause for any such possible attack is removed; and that that cause is our support of the Jewish genocide in Palestine. We have been told again and again, by many Arab leaders, not only by bin Laden and President Arafat, that the reasons for the terror in Israel (and the United States) is the terror being practiced on the Palestinians by the Israelis with U.S. complicity. Arafat has said he cannot ask his people to give up their bombs so long as Israel refuses to end the illegal occupation of the remaining 22% of traditional Palestinian lands — of which it already possesses 78%. Israel cannot sustain its military actions, nor for that matter, its own economic well-being, without billions in annual aid from the American taxpayers, investors and contributors. Remove that aid, and place embargoes and sanctions on Israel as long as it refuses to negotiate in good faith with the Palestinians, and the Zionist campaign to destroy them will shrivel of its own accord. The certain knowledge that the United States for the first time is using its power in a just cause, it is argued quite plausibly, will give President Arafat, or whomever the Palestinians elect to lead them, the tools needed to persuade them and their Arab allies to stop the violence, both against Israel and in any further potential terror against the United States. Supporters of Israel hegemony here and abroad belittle Arafat’s proposal and are sworn to fight any course short of complete subjugation and dispossession of the Palestinians to the last dollar and drop of American blood. They do not want peace. They want Palestinian lands. The Zionists and their many Jewish and Christian allies accuse negotiators of appeasement, suggesting that the victims of their aggression are a threat to world peace, and implying that Sharon’s decadeslong West Bank liquidation of Palestinians is the final solution that will win George W. Bush’s “war on terrorism”. It won’t. Nor will it put an end to the
activities of countless other popular fronts and nationalist groups from Kashmir to East Timor, and beyond. (The argument that a peace that returns the West Bank to Palestine will somehow give “terrorists” in other places a new card to play in their own demands for autonomy, or whatever, is nonsense. Continued popular resistance against powerful oppressors is a people’s only card in a stacked deck, one they will play regardless of any solution in Palestine –- or of Mr. Bush’s dreams of grandeur. If he did not learn that from Vietnam, they say, he will have to learn it again. The problem is, of course, we will have to learn it with him.) Meanwhile, the recent events in Israel may have finally awakened the sleeping giant. We are beginning to ask why we should annually give billions of our taxes to a foreign government, especially when it is among the least needy in the world. Why should we be asked to spend billions more on home defense, and lose our rights into the bargain? Israel provides us with nothing of a value even close to the billions they receive. The U.S. military does not need Israel for military bases when it has many other NATO-ally bases in the region. In short, there is no political, military or economic advantage to be gained from continuation of policies which, if changed, demonstrate for the world our humanity, have some chance of quickly and cheaply resolving years of violence in the Middle East and removing the terrorist threat at home, all without further encroachment on the civil protections, life styles, and economic well-being of us and our fellow Americans. Some people argue that Israel is doing nothing more in Palestine than we did with the Indians in our settling of America. Their opponents say that that argument shows where their heads are. 18th and 19th century Americans did little in their dealings with the Indians that we today are proud of. We don’t defend it. However, if we‘re being accused of pioneering a vast, million square mile wilder-
ness and fighting two wars against a major world power, largely at our own expense, we plead guilty. We got no help from Lord Rothschild. Israel, on the other hand, aided by the wealth and power of the United States taxpayers and the world’s wealthiest Jews, is today engaging in extermination of a relatively small group of ancient enemies whose lands it has coveted for 4,000 years. Colonial America was a vast, open continent comprising one of the largest land areas on the planet. -- Ancient Palestine is a tiny slice of the Middle East the size of a single U.S. state. A second argument of the Harry Truman political variety is that the number of Jews in the U.S. population requires that their taxes be used in accordance with their interests, and that the American Jewish population fully supports the policies of Israel and its current president, Ariel Sharon. This is specious hogwash. In the first place, large numbers of Jews, both in Israel and the U.S., do not support the genocide in Palestine. Secondly, there is an issue of just how many Jews there are in the United States. According to the Statistical Abstract, in 1963 there were 5.6 million religious Jews in the U.S; as of 1990, there were very slightly over 6 million. (These numbers were voluntarily submitted to the Bureau of Census by the American Jewish Committee and reflect numbers reported to it by Jewish religious institutions). It is clear that many U.S. Jews are not being counted in these statistics. However, for the sake of argument, if we assume there are 10 times the official number in the actual population, or 60 million supporters of Israel (probably overstated), we still have only 21% of the population who according to this argument, should be given the right to decide how the taxes of the other 79% are used. This second argument also ignores the injunction implied in the fundamental doctrine of separation of church and state, which, concededly the current rightwing Republican Congress is working furiously to destroy. So far, however, they
have not succeeded; and, as a government, we still are not permitted to disburse federal taxes for the benefit of religious institutions, just as we are not permitted to collect taxes on the religious offerings they receive from their congregations. Finally, others argue that, regardless of how it happened, the occupied territories now contain so many Jewish homes and families that there is simply no place for the Palestinians to return. First of all, this view is in violation of the U.N. resolution 194 mandating the right of return. Secondly, it is a myth. A recent study showed 78% of Israelis live in 14% of Israel. If all Gaza refugees were to return to their homes, only 5% of Jews would be affected. If refugees from Lebanon returned to their homes in the Galilee, about 1% of Jews would be affected. It is a myth the fundamentalist Zionist leadership have pursued to justify “transfer”. Also, it apparently is a key argument in the decision of the Bush administration to throw its unconditional support to Israel, and the best evidence of Bush’s character flaws, ignorance of history, and political immaturity. In his recent fixation on “weapons of mass destruction” in Iraq (never mind that Israel, India, Pakistan, North Korea, and China, to name only a few, already possess nuclear weapons), Bush has argued vehemently that the U.N. must pass a resolution requiring Iraq’s leaders to disarm. He has included North Korea in his “Axis of Evil”. Does this mean the U.N. must pass a resolution requiring North Korea to permit unconditional inspections and destruction of its nuclear program? U.N. Resolution 194 affirming the right of Palestinians to return to their homes and property, first passed December 11, 1948, has since been passed no less than 26 times, without result. The question then becomes: how can George Bush demand that Saddam Hussain comply with U.N. resolutions while ignoring the resolutions largely uncomplied with by Israel? How can the U.N. demand compliance from Iraq while doing nothing about its many Palestine resolutions, in-
cluding 194, 252, and 338, without violating its own Charter? Is the United Nations then to become, after all, a tool of American military imperialism? As the Palestinian President points out, Israel already occupied 78% of Palestinian lands before its 1967 first strike invasion of the rest of Palestine. There is, and has been, ample land area for Israel to develop settlements for their Russian and European importations without militarily expropriating Palestinian lands. There is no reason why every Jewish family imported into the West Bank since 1967 could not easily relocate from Palestinian lands to other areas legitimately a part of those given to Israel by the United Nations in 1948. On September 12, 2001, ignoring an opportunity to sit down, take a deep breath, calm an angry, shocked and frightened people, and demonstrate some statesmanship and leadership in demanding immediate negotiations for a readily available, relatively economical, common-sense solution to a national tragedy and growing threat to the American way of life, Bush and his advisers instead deliberately chose to ignore the fundamental problems. Instead of honestly and quickly focusing on the Arab-Israeli conflagration as something too long allowed to burn, they chose to nonsensically push the American people into a shaky, enormously expensive, unwinable military adventure against a vaguely identified ideological phantom called terrorism, spurred on by politicians in their own and other political parties and governments having various personal or political axes to grind. Some historians suggest that, ultimately, history will show that this tragedy began its final act in the U.S. presidential election of 2000. It will depict the accidental president as a very ordinary man with ordinary ideas of the kind of “compassionate conservative” world he believes we all should live in, a world dominated by U.S. political, economic and military power: An ordinary man in the
wrong place at the wrong time. That this ordinary man came just when his nation and his people needed the most extraordinary man in its history. It, of course, is not that simple. In recent years, Bush’s predecessors, of both parties, had just as weakly fallen into many of the same serious sins of commission and omission. Along with the failure of the markets, we today are being apprised of the corruption at the top of corporate society that has for years reached into the agencies created to regulate it, the Congress and the White House. America needed a strong, corrective presence to guide the nation back onto firmer moral ground (some pundits suggest there exists a legitimate question as to whether any 2000 candidate would have filled this need, of itself a ringing indictment of the two major parties and the political process). The man the Republican Party chose is not a strong leader with a profound sense of history and deep sense of Jeffersonian democracy. As an American businessman and local politician, he practiced consensus politics. His more generous critics say that he is an earnest and sincere man easily influenced by others. He means well, even though he whines a lot. As the accidental national leader, in the apparent absence of deep intellectual insights and convictions, he impresses as one who leans heavily on the advice and opinions of others in executing his odd combination of rural grass-roots, feel-good social policies, his dubious corporate alliances and connections, and his out-of-control internationalist saber-rattling, and amateurish attempts at world policing, and state building. What he appears not to realize, is too dumb to see, or simply does not care about, they suggest, is that the cost of his imaginary “war” is coming out of the pockets of the American people, and will continue to come out of the pockets of their posterity for generations to come.
Finally, there is the oil connection. We know that some of the most powerful men in today’s world are corporate CEO’s in offshore units out of reach of U.S. laws. These are executives of the shadowy oil cartel, whose members include British, Dutch, French, Norwegian, various African and Middle Eastern, as well as American and Latin American multinationals. The President, the Vice President, and the President’s father, former President Bush, all have had long-term involvement in the oil business, and strong connections with the cartel. These companies have a documented history of political involvement and manipulation of governments in which they have an interest. The oil cartel, primarily a secret, supranational, parallel government to the United Nations and the Organization of Petroleum Producing States, with strong ties to N.A.T.O., has been allowed to become one of the most powerful forces among the nations of the world. It was not the fault of either Bush administration that the corporate moguls who are the power of the Republican Party supported the choice of candidates with these dubious connections and clear conflicts with the interests of oil consuming Americans. But regardless of fault, many observers of the political scene say it was a fatal mistake and the final blunder of the capitalist political orthodoxy. In support of this view, they point to the destruction of independent competition in the U.S. retail gasoline markets and the manipulation of production to maintain high oil prices, as well as the continued U.S. involvement and intervention in the politics of many sovereign oil-producing countries. These policies, they suggest, have adversely affected the daily lives of average Americans and destroyed the long standing U.S. reputation for integrity and fairness abroad. More ominously, they may have materially contributed, as in U.S. military support of Israel, to the disasters which in the Jr. Bush administration have overtaken the nation. September 11th, 2001, was a terrible tragedy for us all, and particularly for those of us who were caught up in the disaster. It was all the more terrible in that it
might easily have been avoided. Any positive show of real determination to bring some justice to the issues of the Palestinian peoples would have saved lives, in both New York and Israel. Thousands of our people died on September 11th . Many times that number starve in refugee camps visited daily by Israeli tanks and vigilante groups. Two things must happen if the Middle East is ever to see peace. The United States and her allies, working through the U.N., must force the State of Israel to withdraw to the legal borders set by the 1947 partition of Palestine; refugees who wish to return must have their property returned together with compensation for any damages due; refugees who do not wish to return must be fairly compensated for losses. Ariel Sharon must be prosecuted for the war criminal he is, and his Illegal structures on Palestinian lands made the property of the land’s returning owners or of the Palestine State.
Bibliography Ahlstrom, G.W., The History of Ancient Palestine from the Paleolithic Period to Alexander’s Conquest (1992) Alley, Robert S. The Supreme Court on Church and State (1988)
Amnesty International Amnesty International Urges Investigation Ariel Sharon (October 3, 2001) Ashrawl, H., This side of Peace(1995) Baylor, Michael G. ed. The Radical Reformation (1990) CNN.com, Law student confesses to killing Rabin (posted Nov. 4, 1995) Cohen, M.J. Palestine and the Great Powers, 1945 to 1948 (1982) Conetta, Carl, “Strange Victory: A critical appraisal of Operation Eduring Freedom and the Afghanistan war (Executive Summary)”, Cambridge, MA: Commonwealth Institute, Project for Defense Alternatives, 12 Feb., 2002.. Divine, D.R., Politics and Society in Ottoman Palestine (1994) Eastland, Terry Religious Liberty in the Supreme Court (1995) Eidelberg, P. The Chosen People (May, 1998) Farsoun, S.K. The Palestinians (1996) Gilbert, M., Atlas of the Arab-Israeli Conflict, 6th ed. (1993) Hadawi, Sami, Interlink Books, Bitter Harvest (January, 1990) Halpern, Ben, The Idea of the Jewish State, rev. ed. (1969) Hunter, James D., and Guiness, Os, eds., Articles of Faith, Articles of Peace: The Religious Liberty Clauses and the American Public Philosophy (1990) Huggler and Phil Reeves, Independent/UK, What Really Happened When Israeli Forces Went into Jenin? (April 25, 2002) Hutcheson, R., Landay, J.S., Knight Ridder Newspapers, Bush’s unconditional declaration of war . . . (Internet posting, March 7, 2002). Jones, Nathan, Washington Report, U.S. Reform Judaism Leader Denounces Netanyahu Policies (March, 1997, p. 45) Klare, Michael T., Rumsfeld: Star Warrior Returns, The Nation, January 29, 2001
Laqueur, Walter, A History of Zionism (1972) Levy, T., ed. The Archeology of Society in the Holy Land (1994) MacNeil/Lehrer Productions, Online NewsHour Report, Attorney General Designate John Ashcroft, Dec. 27, 2000 McGeary, Johanna, Time Magazine, Benjamin Netanyahu (Dec. 29, 1997)
Bibliography (cont.) Megally, Hanny, Human Rights Watch Report, 2001,Israel: Sharon Investigation Urged, (June 23, 2001) Meyer, Dick CBSNews.com John Ashcroft: Minister of Fear, (June 12, 2002) Morris, B., The Birth of the Palestinian Refugee Problem (1988) Neff, Donald, Washington Report, Israel Never Honored the Oslo Peace Accords Signed at White House. (September, 1998) Owen, R., ed., Studies in the Economic and Social History of Palestine in the 19th and 20th Centuries (1982) Pappe, Ilan, The Making of the Arab-Israeli Conflict, 1947-1951 Quigley, John, “Palestine and Israel: A Challenge to Justice” Said, E.W. The Politics of Dispossession (1994) Seizer, Michael, ed., Zionism Reconsidered: The Rejection of Jewish Normalcy (1970) Said and Hitchens, ed. Blaming the Victims Sheldon, Garrett W., Religion and Politics: Major Thinkers on the Relation of Church and State (1990) Smith, C.D., Palestine and the Arab-Israeli Conflict, 2d ed. (1992)
Statistical Abstract of the U.S., 2001 ed., p. 56, Table 66., Religious Preference, Church Membership, and Attendance: 1980-2000 Statistical Abstract of the U.S., 2000 ed., p. 787, Table 1318, U.S. Exports, Imports; U.S. Government Foreign Grants and Credits; p. 790, Table 1320 U.S. Foreign Military Aid; Table 1321, U.S. Foreign Aid, Economic Assistance; p.794, Table 1328, U.S. Exports, Imports 19951999. Statistical Abstract of the U.S., 1966 ed., p. 853, Table 1246, Major U.S. Government Foreign Assistance, 1945-1965 Steinberg, Jeffrey Ariel Sharon: Profile of an Unrepentant War Criminal, Executive Intelligence Review, May 17, 2002 Tessler, M., A History of the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict (1994) Vital, David, Origins of Zionism (1975) Wallach, J., New Palestinians (1992) Wilken, R.L., The Land Called Holy (1993)
APPENDIX The British High Commissioner’s 1915 Promise to Give Palestinians Independence.
Egypt, like many other of the territories of the Middle East and South- eastern Europe, was part of the Ottoman Empire from the sixteenth to nineteenth centuries. Unlike many of the other territories, it very abruptly entered the modern era when invaded by Napoleon Bonaparte in 1798. The French soon left after losing the naval Battle of Trafalgar which very nearly found them marooned at Britain’s mercy, and the Ottomans regrouped. Nevertheless, Napoleon’s modern weapons and western ways left a lasting impression on the Sultan and Ottoman rulers. There were frequent contacts and in the mid- 19th century, a progressive Albanian officer in the Ottoman army, Muhammad Ali Pasha, became vizier of Egypt. Shortly thereafter, he joined in a three way partnership with France and England in the building of the Suez Canal. Later, finding himself short of capital, he sold Egypt’s shares in the Canal to Britain, and borrowed heavily from both partners. When he was unable to repay the debt, a repayment commission was formed. Nationalist elements in Egypt rebelled. Britain put down the rebellion and, in 1882, took control of Egypt and joint operation of the Canal. Meanwhile, in 1913 the Turkish Ottoman leader in Anatolia, Enver Pasha, chose to ally the remnants of the Ottoman Empire with Germany and Austria-Hungary against the French and British. With Germany’s defeat in 1918, to assist in the building of new states out of the old, the League of Nations created as part of the Treaty at Versailles, a mandate which gave Great Britain the authority over much of the former Ottoman territories, an authority known as the British Mandate. In 1914, the British had made Egypt a protectorate and used it as a base for their military operations against the Ottomans in Turkey. Realizing the value of an alliance with the Arabs, they authorized their High Commis-sioner in Cairo to offer independence to the Arab countries, including Pal-estine, for their aid in de-
feating Germany’s allies in the East. What follows is the exchange of correspondence on the subject of that agreement.
Letter from Sharif Hussain, Emir of Mecca, to High Commissioner McMahon, dated July 14, 1915. Whereas the whole of the Arab nation without any exception have decided in these last years to accomplish their freedom, and grasp the reins of their administration, both in theory and practice; and whereas they have found and felt that it is in the interests of the Government of Great Britain to support them and aid them in the attainment of their firm and lawful intentions (which are based upon the maintenance of honor and dignity of their life) without any ulterior motives whatsoever unconnected with this object; And whereas it is to their (the Arabs’) interest to prefer the assistance to the Government of Great Britain in consideration of their geographic position and economic interests, and also of the attitude of the above-mentioned Government, which is known to both nations and therefore need not be emphasized; For these reasons the Arab nation sees fit to limit themselves, as time is short, in asking the Government of Great Britain, if it should think fit, for the approval, through her deputy or representatives, of the following fundamental proposition, leaving out all things considered secondary in comparison with these, so that it may prepare all means necessary for attaining this noble purpose, until such time as it finds occasion for making the actual negotiations: —
Firstly.— England will acknowledge the independence of the Arab countries, bounded on the north by Mersina and Adana up to the 37th degree of latitude, on which degree fall Birijik, Urfa, Mardin, Midiat, Jezirat (Ibin ‘Umar), Amedia, up to the border of Persia; 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. England to approve the proclamation of an Arab Khalifate of Islam. Secondly.—The Arab Government of the Sherif will acknowledge that England shall have the preference in all economic enterprises in the Arab countries whenever conditions of enterprises are oth-erwise equal.
Appendix (continued) Letter from Sharif Hussein, Continued Thirdly.— For the security of this Arab independence and the certainty of such preferences of economic enterprises, both high contracting parties will offer mutual assistance, to the best ability of their military and naval forces, to face any foreign Power which may attack either party. Peace not to be decided without agreement of both parties. Fourthly.— If one of the parties enters into an aggressive conflict, the other party will assume a neutral attitude, and in case of such party wishing the other to join forces, both to meet and discuss the conditions. Fifthly.— England will acknowledge the abolition of foreign privileges in the Arab countries, and will assist the Government of the Sherif in an International Convention for confirming such abolition.
Sixthly.— Article 3 and 4 of this treaty will remain in vigor for fifteen years, and, if either wishes to be be renewed, one year’s notice before lapse of the treaty is to be given. Consequently, and as the whole of the Arab nation have (praise be to God) agreed and united for the attainment, at all costs and finally, of this noble object, they beg the Government of Great Britain to answer them positively or negatively in a period of thirty days after receiving this intimation, and if this period should lapse before they receive an answer, they reserve to themselves complete freedom of action. Moreover, we (the Sherif’s family) will consider ourselves free in work and deed from the bonds of our previous declaration which we made through Ali Effendi. Letter from the British High Commissioner in Egypt: Sir Henry McMahon, to Sherif Hussain, the Emir of Mecca, dated October 24, 1915 I have received your letter of the 29th Shawal, 1333, with much pleasure and your expression of friendliness and sincerity have given me the greatest satisfaction.
Appendix (continued) Letter from Sir Henry McMahon, Continued I regret that you should have received from my last letter the impression that I regarded the question of the limits and boundaries with coldness and hesitation; such was not the
case, but it appeared to me that the time had not yet come when that question could be discussed in a conclusive manner. I have realised, however, from your last letter that you regard this question as one of vital and urgent importance. I have, therefore, lost no time informing the Government of Great Britain of the contents of your letter, and it is with great pleasure that I communicate to you on their behalf the following statement, which I am confident you will receive with satisfaction. The two districts of Mersina and Alexandretta and portion 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. With the above modifications, and without prejudice to our existing treaties with Arab chiefs, we accept those limits. As for those 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:— 1. 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. 2. Great Britain will guarantee the Holy Places against all external aggression and will recognize their inviolability. 3. When the situation admits, Great Britain will give to the Arabs her advice and will assist them to establish what may appear to be the most suitable forms of government in
those various territories. 4. On the other hand, it is understood that the Arabs have decided to seek the advice and guidance of Great Britain only, and that such European Appendix (continued) Letter from Sir Henry McMahon, Continued advisers and officials as may be required for the formation of a sound form of administration will be British. 5. With regard to the vilayets of Baghdad and Basra, the Arabs will recognize that the established position and interests of Great Britain necessitate special administrative arrangements in order to secure these territories from foreign aggression, to promote the welfare of the local populations and to safeguard our mutual economic interests. I am convinced that this declaration will assure you beyond all possible doubt of the sympathy of Great Britain towards the aspirations of her friends the Arabs and will result in a firm and lasting alliance, the immediate results of which will be the expulsion of the Turks from the Arab countries and the freeing of the Arab peoples from the Turkish yoke, which for so many years has pressed heavily upon them. I have confined myself in this letter to the more vital and important questions, and if there are any other matters dealt with in your letter which I have omitted to mention, we may discuss them at some convenient date in the future. It was with great relief and satisfaction that I heard of the safe arrival of the Holy Carpet and the accompanying offerings which, thanks to the clearness of your directions and the excellence of your arrangements, were landed without trouble or mishaps in spite of the
dangers and difficulties occasioned by the present sad war. May God soon bring a lasting peace and freedom to all peoples! I am sending this letter by the hand of your trusted and excellent messenger, Sheikh Mohammed Ibn Arif Ibn Uraifan, and he will inform you of the various matters of interest, but of less vital importance, which I have not mentioned in this letter.
Britain’s First Violation of its Agreement with the Arabs for an Independent State to Include Palestine: The Balfour Declaration. Dr. Chaim Weizmann, a Zionist leader in Great Britain, and later first President of Israel, coined the popular settlement slogan “A land without people for a people without a land.” In thus totally ignoring the millions of indigenous Arab population’s existence, the dogged insistence by this SwissAppendix (continued) The Balfour Declaration, Continued trained chemist on the absence of “people” in Palestine was a clear message that the Zionists considered the Palestinians somewhat less than human and intended to treat them as such. The British appeared to agree. Hardly more than two years into its 15 year contract with the Arabs promising independence of territories that included Palestine, Weizmann and his wealthy fellow Zionists, 2nd Baron Lord Rothschild, obtained an agreement from the government that broke its word to its wartime Arab allies and set the peoples of the Middle East on an 80 year ride with the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse. Rothschild, who had been a member of the
House of Lords, was of a family of bankers who had financed nations in several wars. It is clear British politicians hoped to have his support in their war with Germany. As reported in The Times of London, here is the letter containing the Declaration: Foreign Office November 2nd, 1917 Dear Lord Rothschild: I have much pleasure in conveying to you on behalf of His Majesty’s Government, the following declaration of sympathy with Jewish Zionist aspiration which has been submitted to, and approved by, the Cabinet: His Majesty’s Govrnment view with favor the establishment in Palestine of a national home for the Jewish people, and will use their best endeavors to facilitate the achievement of this object, it being clearly understood that nothing will be done which may prejudice the civil and religious rights of existing non-Jewish communities in Palestine, or the rights and political status enjoyed by Jews in any other country. I should be grateful if you would bring this declaration to the knowledge of the Zionist Federation. Yours, Arthur James Balfour
Appendix (continued) Covenant of the League of Nations—Continued Covenant of the League of Nations, Article 22. In 1919, at the Paris Peace Conference, 27 nations led by Britain, France, Italy and the U.S., signed the Covenant of the League of Nations. The Balfour Declaration had been made unilaterally and without Allied approval. It clearly overreached Britain’s actual authority as Mandatory in Palestine. The language in paragraph 4 of Article 22 clearly limited Britain, the “Mandatory”, to the “rendering of administrative advice and assistance until such time as the Mandated territories were able to stand alone”, i.e., govern themselves. Here is Article 22. as approved by the member nations: (the U.S. later opted out of membership in the League). “THE HIGH CONTRACTING PARTIES In order to promote international co-operation and to achieve international peace and security . . . by the acceptance of obligations not to resort to war, by the prescription of open, just and honourable relations between nations, by the firm establishment of the understandings of international law as the actual rule of conduct among Governments, and by the maintenance of justice and a scrupulous respect for all treaty obligations in the dealings of organized peoples with one another, Agree to this Covenant of the League of Nations. . . Article 22.
To Those colonies and territories which as a consequence of the late war have ceased to be under the sovereignty of the States which formerly governed them and which are inhabited by peoples not yet able to stand by themselves under the strenuous conditions of the modern world, there should be applied the principle that the well-being and development of such peoples form a sacred trust of civilization and that securities for the performance of this trust should be embodied in the Covenant. The best method of giving practical effect to this principle is that the tutelage of such peoples should be entrusted to advanced nations who by reason of their resources, their experience or their geographical position can best undertake this responsibility, and who are willing to accept it, and that this tutelage should be exercised by them as Mandatories on behalf of the League. Appendix (continued) Article 22., Continued The character of the mandate must differ according to the stage of the development of the people, the geographical situation of the territory, its economic conditions and other similar circumstances. Certain communities formerly belonging to the Turkish Empire have reached a stage of development where their existence as independent nations can be provisionally recognized subject to the rendering of administrative advice and assistance by a Mandatory until such time as they are able to stand alone. The wishes of these communities must be a principal consideration in the selection of the Mandatory. Other peoples, especially those of Central Africa, are at such a stage that the Mandatory must be responsible for the administration of the territory under conditions which will guarantee freedom of conscience and religion, subject only to the maintenance of public order and morals, the prohibition of abuses such as the slave trade, the arms traffic and
the liquor traffic, and the prevention of the establishment of fortifications or military and naval bases and of military training of the natives for other than police purposes and the defence of territory, and will also secure equal opportunities for the trade and commerce of other Members of the League. There are territories, such as South-West Africa and certain of the South Pacific Islands, which, owing to the sparseness of their population, or their small size, or their remoteness from the centers of civilization, or their geographical contiguity to the territory of the Mandatory, and other circumstances, can be best administered under the laws of the Mandatory as integral portions of its territory, subject to the safeguards above mentioned in the interests of the indigenous population. In every case of mandate, the Mandatory shall render to the Council an annual report in reference to the territory committed to its charge. The degree of authority, control, or administration to be exercised by the Mandatory shall, if not previously agreed upon by the Members of the League, be explicitly defined in each case by the Council. A permanent Commission shall be constituted to receive and examine the annual reports of the Mandatories and to advise the Council on all matters relating to the observance of the mandates.”
Appendix (continued) Churchill’s White Paper
Churchill’s 1922 White Paper on Palestinian and Jewish Rights. In April, 1920, the Allied Supreme Council at the San Remo Conference confirmed that Palestine would pass from an international administration to a British tutelage. This decision was reached without any notice of the requirements of Article 22 of the Covenant. At the same time, European Jews were flooding into Palestine, leading to anti-Jewish riots by the resident Palestinians. In May, 1921, riots broke out in Jaffa that resulted in 95 dead and 220 injured. Increasingly concerned by the consequences of its policies in the region, Britain attempted to calm things by issuing a statement through its then Colonial Secretary, Winston Churchill:
The Churchill White Paper, June 1922: “The Secretary of State for the Colonies has given renewed consideration to the existing political situation in Palestine, with a very earnest desire to arrive at a settlement of the outstanding questions which have given rise to uncertainty and unrest among certain sections of the population. The tension which has prevailed from time to time in Palestine is mainly due to apprehensions, which are entertained both by sections of the Arab and by sections of the Jewish population. These apprehensions, so far as the Arabs are concerned, are partly based upon exaggerated interpretations of the meaning of the Declaration favoring the establishment of a Jewish National Home in Palestine, made on behalf of HMG (His Majesty’s Government) on 2nd November, 1917. Unauthorized statements have been made to the effect that the purpose in view is to create a wholly Jewish Palestine. Phrases have been used such as that Palestine is to become ‘as Jewish as England is English.’ HMG regard any such expectation as impracticable and have no such aim in view. Nor have they at any time contemplated, as appears to be
feared by the Arab Delegation, the disappearance or the subordination of the Arabic population, language or culture in Palestine. They would draw attention to the fact that the terms of the Declaration referred to do not contemplate that Palestine as a whole should be converted into a Jewish National Home, but that such a Home should be founded in Palestine. In this connection it has been observed with satisfaction that at the meeting of the Zionist Congress, the supreme governing body of the Zionist organization, held at Carlsbad in September, 1921, a resolution was passed expressing as the official statement of Zionist aims ‘the determination of the Jewish people to live with the Arab people on terms of unity and mutual respect, and together with them to make the common home Appendix (continued) Churchill’s White Paper, Continued into a flourishing community, the upbuilding of which may assure to each of its peoples an undisturbed national development.’ It is also necessary to point out that the Zionist Commission in Palestine, now termed the Zionist Executive, has not desired to possess, and does not possess, any share in the general administration of the country. Nor does the special position assigned to the Zionist Organization in Article IV of the Draft Mandate for Palestine imply such functions. That special position relates to the measures to be taken in Palestine affecting the Jewish population, and contemplates that the Organization may assist in the general development of the country, but does not entitle it to share in any degree in its Government. Further, it is contemplated that the status of all citizens of Palestine in the eyes of the law shall be Palestinian, and it has never been intended that they, or any section of them, should possess any other juridical status. So far as the Jewish population of Palestine are concerned, it appears that some among them are apprehensive that HMG may depart from the policy embodied in the Declara-
tion of 1917. It is necessary, therefore, once more to affirm that these fears are unfounded, and that the Declaration is not susceptible of change. During the last two or three generations the Jews have created in Palestine a com-munity now numbering 80,000, of whom about one-fourth are farmers or workers upon; the land. This community has its own political organs; an elected assembly for the direction of its domestic concerns; elected councils in the towns; and an organization for the control of its schools. It has its elected Chief Rabbinate and Rabbinical Council for the direction of its religious affairs. Its business is conducted in Hebrew as a vernacular language, and a Hebrew press serves its needs. It has distinctive intellectual life and displays considerable economic activity. This community, then, with its town and country population, its political, religious and social organizations, its own language, its own customers, its own life, has in fact “national” characteristics. When it is asked what is meant by the development of the Jewish National Home in Palestine, it may be answered that it is not the imposi-tion of a Jewish nationality upon the inhabitants of Palestine as a whole, but the further development of the existing Jewish community, with the assistance of Jews in other parts of the world, in order that it may become a center in which the Jew-ish people as a whole, on grounds of religion and race, an interest and a pride. But in order that this community should have the best prospect of free development and provide full opportunity for the Jewish people to display its capacities, it is essential that it should know that it is in Palestine as of right and not on sufferance. That is Appendix (continued) Churchill’s White Paper, Continued the reason why it is necessary that the existence of a Jewish National Home in Palestine should be internationally guaranteed, and that it should be formally recognized to rest upon ancient historic connection.
This, then, is the interpretation which HMG place upon the Declaration of 1917, and, so understood, the Secretary of State is of the opinion that it does not contain or imply anything which need cause either alarm to the Arab population of Palestine or disappointment to the Jews. For the fulfillment of this policy it is necessary that the Jewish community in Palestine should be able to increase its numbers by immigration. This immigration cannot be so great in volume as to exceed whatever may be the economic capacity of the country at the time to absorb new arrivals. It is essential to ensure that the immigrants should not be a burden upon the people of Palestine as a whole, and that they should not deprive any section of the present population of their employment. Hitherto the immigration has fulfilled these conditions. The number of immigrants since the British occupation has been about 25,000. The Peel Commission and the Partition Plan By 1936, fed up with British political treachery and Jewish terrorism, the Palestinians took their resistance to the next level, increasing their violence against the still uncontrolled Jewish immigration into their homelands in what became known as the Palestine Rebellion. With typical British stubbornness, officials refused to consider amending their stated goal of establishing a Zionist homeland on Palestinian soil. Instead, they appointed another Royal Commission, “without questioning the fundamental terms of the Mandate (to) investigate the causes of unrest and any alleged grievances either of Arabs or Jews”. The British politicians simply could not bring themselves to admit that powerful British Zionists like the Rothschilds and Weizmanns had driven them into a corner over Palestine. To save face, their official view of the Zionist nationalists introduced into Palestinian lands under the politically-influenced Balfour Declaration was
that of a people with equal rights to the lands they were arbitrarily occupying by the stroke of a pen. This Commission, headed by Lord Earl Peel, a Zionist partisan and former Secretary of State to India, was rife with political pressures. Chaim Weizmann, gave a long and much applauded speech before its members. The Arab Chief Judge in Jerusalem refused to appear on grounds that there was no legal ground for him to appeal the illegal and immoral occupation of his homeland.
Appendix (continued) The Peel Report., Continued The former mayor of Jerusalem, Ragheb Bey al-Nashashibi, was later sent to present the Arab view through unofficial channels, without particular effect. Despite its stated goals, the Commission’s finding, The Peel Report, revealed the Commission’s work as a duel between Zionist and Anti-Zionist British politicians. As stipulated, no consideration was to be given to the legality or rightness of either the Balfour Declaration or the subsequent Mandate settling Jews on Palestinian lands. In fact, as shown by Britain’s retreat from the Mandate eleven years later, the proposals embodied in the Peel Report simply mired Britain deeper into the consequences of political perfidy, incompetence and imperialist arrogance, under color of manifest humanitarianism and nation building. Two major proposals that came out of the Peel Report were to dog the foot steps of all future parties’ efforts to right the wrongs and resolve the issues preventing peace in the Middle East. They were the concept of partition, and the idea of population transfer , both immediately seized upon by the Zionists as major victories
in their campaign to force Arabs off their homelands. The Arabs understandably opposed both: The Palestinian territories, to be diminished by more than half in the proposed Partition, were theirs in the first place; and secondly, since at the outset Arab populations in Palestine outnumbered the Zionist immigrants by as much as 200 to 1, any transfer of land plan must inevitably favor the Zionists. Any attempt by Britain to move Arabs out of the Jewish Partition into the Arab Partitions, and vice versa, would, as a practical matter, simply have resulted in more violence. Furthermore, the proposals went far beyond the authority of the Mandate’s Article 22, which restricted the Mandatory to “the rendering of administrative advice and assistance” to the Palestinians “until such time as they are able to stand alone”. The report consisted of 400 pages, but by the requirement that the Commission should consider the issues “without bringing into question the fundamental terms of the Mandate”, it sidestepped the gut issue of the Palestinians’ right to self determina-tion in their own homeland without having unlimited immigrations of Jews forced upon them. It therefore became an exercise in the lawerly art of citing distinguishable precedents and ignoring relevant legal and moral rules.
Appendix (continued) The Peel Report., Continued Chapter xxii of the Report dealt with the plan for Partition. Under the plan, the Mandate would terminate and Palestine would be divided into three regions: a
continued Jewish state, including the whole of Galilee, the whole of the Jezreel Valley, the greater part of the Beisan and all of the coastal plain from Ras- el-Nakura west of the Jordan together with Transjordan. A British enclave remaining under Mandate, containing Jerusalm, Bethlehem and Nazareth on a permanent basis and as a temporary measure the towns of Haifa, Acre, Tiberias and Safed, would ultimately become part of the Jewish state. There were nearly a 250,000 Arabs living in the proposed Jewish partition and only about 1,500 Jews then living in the Arab partition. The British Government thanked the Commission and put the report in the file. There was no further consideration at that time of the idea of population transfer. Thus, Britain’s stubborn, imperialist pursuit of its politically biased and illegal policy against the rights of the Palestinians, which might have been rectified without great damage to either Jew or Palestinian in 1936, set the world on its course to, 64 years later, September 11th, 2001. Three more years of violence between the Zionist illegal, paramilitary forces, including Haganah, the clandestine Jewish terrorist unit, and the Arab residents of Palestine ensued. Meanwhile, as today, the Jews and Britain complained of Arab terrorism. THE BRITISH WHITE PAPER OF 1939 In 1938, with the violence in the Mandate undiminished, the British government held separate meetings with Arabs and the Jewish Authority in an attempt to resolve the conflicts. To that end, it invited representatives of the Palestinians and other Arab groups, and those of the Jewish Agency in the Mandate, to confer on proposals formulated by the government and put before the representatives as the basis for settlement. Neither Arabs nor Jews could agree on the British pro-
posals, and the government thus declared itself free to formulate its own policy for settlement which it stated as those “which were finally submitted and discussed with the Arab and Jewish delegations”. The document that emerged from these London Conferences, the 1939 White Paper, essentially disavowed any intention on the part of the government to
Appendix (continued) The White Paper of 1939, Continued create a Jewish state or grant promised independence to the Arabs of Palestine. Instead it envisaged the end of the mandate within 10 years, and a single Palestinian state in which Jews and Arabs would live side by side and share in the governmental functions. The Paper also stipulated that immigration would end after an additional 75,000 immigrants were admitted over a period of five years, and that, in the interim, land sales or transfers would be strictly limited by the British government. Here, in its entirety, is the British White Paper of 1939 (Otherwise referred to as the McDonald Paper of 1939): “In the statement on Palestine, issued on 9 November, 1938, His Majesty’s Government announced their intention to invite representatives of the Arabs of Palestine, of certain neighboring countries and of the Jewish Agency to confer with them in London regarding future policy. It was their sincere hope that, as a result of full, free and frank discussions, some understanding might be reached. Conferences recently took place with Arab and Jewish delegations, lasting for a period of several weeks, and served the purpose of a complete exchange of views between British Ministers and Arab and Jewish representatives.
In light of the discussions as well as of the situation in Palestine and of the Reports of the Royal Commission and the Partition Commission, certain proposals were formulated by his Majesty’s Government and were laid before the Arab and Jewish Delegation as the basis for an agreed settlement. Neither the Arab nor the Jewish delegation felt able to accept these proposals, and the conferences therefore did not result in an agreement. Accordingly His Majesty’s Government are free to formulate their own policy, and after careful consideration they have decided to adhere generally to the proposals which were finally submitted to and discussed with the Arab and Jewish delegations. The Mandate for Palestine, the terms of which were confirmed by the Council of the League of Nations in 1922, has governed the policy of successive British Governments for nearly 20 years. It embodies the Balfour Declaration and imposes on the Mandatory four main obligations. These obligations are set out in Article 2, 6 and 13 of the Mandate. There is no dispute regarding the interpretation of one of these obligations, that touching the protection of an access to the Holy Places and religious buildings and sites. The other three main obligations are generally as follows:
Appendix (continued) The White Paper of 1939, Continued To place the country under such political, administrative and economic conditions as will secure the establishment in Palestine of a national home for the Jewish People. To facilitate Jewish immigration under suitable conditions, and to encourage, in cooperation with the Jewish Agency, close settlement by Jews on the Land. To safeguard the civil and religious rights of all inhabitants of Palestine irrespective of race and religion, and, whilst facilitating Jewish immigration and settlement, to ensure the rights and position of other sections of the population are not prejudiced.
To place the country under such political, administrative and economic conditions as will secure the development of self governing institutions. The Royal Commission and previous commissions of Enquiry have drawn attention to the ambiguity of certain expressions in the Mandate, such as the expression ‘a national home for the Jewish people’, and they have found in this ambiguity and the resulting uncertainty as to the objectives of policy a fundamental cause of the unrest and hostility between Arabs and Jews. His Majesty’s Government are convinced that in the interests of peace and well being of the whole people of Palestine a clear definition of policy and objectives is essential. The proposal of partition recommended by the Royal Commission would have afforded such clarity, but the establishment of self-supporting independent Arab and Jewish States within Palestine has been found to be impracticable. It has therefore been necessary for His Majesty’s Government to devise an alternative policy which will, consistent with their obligations to Arabs and Jews, meet the needs of the situation in Palestine. Their views and proposals are set forth below under three heads, Section I “The Constitution”, Section II. Immigration and Section III. Land. Section I. “The Constitution” It has been urged that the expression “a national home for the Jewish people” offered the prospect that Palestine might in due course become a Jewish State or Commonwealth. His Majesty’s Government do not wish to contest the view, which was expressed by the Royal Commission, that the Zionist leaders at the time of the issue of the Balfour Declaration recognized that an ultimate Jewish State was not precluded by the terms of the Declaration. But, with the Royal Commission, His Majesty’s Government believe that the framers of the Mandate in which the Balfour Declaration was embodied could not have intended that Palestine should be converted to a Jewish State against the will of the Arab population of the country.
Appendix (continued) The White Paper of 1939, Continued That Palestine was not to be converted into a Jewish State might be held to be implied in the passage from the Command Paper of 1922 which reads as follows: ‘Unauthorized statements have been made to the effect that the purpose in view is to create a wholly Jewish Palestine. Phrases have been used such as that ‘Palestine is to become as Jewish and England is English.’ His Majesty’s Government regard any such expectation as impracticable and have no such aim in view. Nor have they at any time contemplated . . . the disappearance or the subordination of the Arabic population, language or culture in Palestine. They would draw attention to the fact that the terms of the (Balfour) Declaration referred to do not contemplate that Palestine as a whole should be converted into a Jewish National Home, but that such a Home should be founded IN PALESTINE.’ But this statement has not removed doubts, and His Majesty’s Government therefore now declare unequivocally that it is not part of their policy that Palestine should become a Jewish State. They would indeed regard it as contrary to their obligations to the Arabs under the Mandate, as well as to the assurances which have been given to the Arab people in the past, that the Arab population of Palestine should be made the subjects of a Jewish State against their will. The nature of the Jewish National Home in Palestine was further described in the Command Paper of 1922 as follows: ‘During the last two or three generations (Ed. roughly from 1917 onwards) the Jews have created in Palestine a community now numbering 80,000, of whom one fourth are farmers or workers upon the land. This community has its own political organs; an elec-
ted assembly for the direction of domestic concerns; elected councils in the towns; and an organization for the control of its schools. It its elected Chief Rabbinate and Rabbinical Council for the direction of its religious affairs. Its business is conducted in Hebrew as a vernacular language, and a Hebrew press serves its needs. It has its distinctive intellectual life and displays considerable economic activity. This community, then, with its town and country population, its political, religious and social organizations, its own language, its own customs, its own life, has in fact ‘national’ characteristics. When it is asked what is meant by the development of the Jewish National Home in Palestine, it may be answered that it is not the imposition of a Jewish nationality upon the inhabitants of Palestine as a whole, but the further development of the existing Jewish community, with the assistance of Jews in other parts of the world, in order that it may become Appendix (continued) The White Paper of 1939, Continued a centre in which the Jewish people as a whole may take, on grounds of religion and race, an interest and pride. But in order that this community should have the best prospects of free development and provide a full opportunity for the Jewish people to display its capacities, it is essential that it should know that it is in Palestine as of right and not on sufferance. That is the reason why it is necessary that the existence of the Jewish National Home in Pales tine should be internationally guaranteed, and that it should be formally recognized to rest upon ancient historic connection.’ His Majesty’s Government adhere to this interpretation of the Balfour Declaration of 1917 and regard it as an authoritative and comprehensive description of the character of the Jewish National Home in Palestine. It envisaged the further development of the existing Jewish community with the assistance of Jews in other parts of the world. Evidence of His Majesty’s Government have been carrying out their obligation in this respect to be found in the facts that, since the statement of 1922 was published, more than 300,000
Jews have immigrated to Palestine, and that the population of the National Home has risen to some 450,000, or approaching a third of the entire population of the country. Nor has the Jewish community failed to take full advantage of the opportunities given to it. The growth of the Jewish National Home and its achievements in many fields are a remarkable constructive effort which must command the admiration of the world and must be, in particular, a source of pride to the Jewish people. In the recent discussions the Arab delegations have repeated the contention that Palestine was included within the area in which Sire Henry McMahon, on behalf of the British Government, in October, 19l5, undertook to recognize and support Arab independence. The validity of this claim, based on the terms of the correspondence which passed between Sir Henry McMahon and the Sharif of Mecca, was thoroughly and carefully investigated by the British and Arab representatives during the recent conference in London. Their report, which has been published, states that both the Arab and British representatives endeavoured to understand the point of view of the other party but that they were unable to reach agreement upon an interpretation of the correspondence. There is no need to summarize here the arguments presented by each side. His Majesty’s Government regret the misunderstandings which have arisen as regards some of the phrases used. For their Report, to the view of the whole of Palestine west of the Jordan was excluded from Sir Henry McMahon’s pledge, and they therefore cannot agree that the McMahon correspondence forms a just basis for the claim that Palestine should be converted into an Arab State.
Appendix (continued) The White Paper of 1939, Continued His Majesty’s Government are charged as the Mandatory authority ‘to secure the development of self governing institutions’ in Palestine. Apart from this specific obligation, they would regard it as contrary to the whole spirit of the Mandate system that the popu-
lation of Palestine should remain forever under Mandatory tutelage. It is proper that the people of the country should as early as possible enjoy the rights of self-government which are exercised by the people of neighbouring countries. His Majesty’s Government are unable at present to foresee the exact constitutional forms which government in Palestine will eventually take, but their objective is self government, and they desire to see established ultimately an independent Palestine State. Is should be a State in which the two peoples in Palestine, Arabs and Jews, share authority in government in such a way that the essential interests of each are shared. The establishment of an independent State and the complete relinquishment of Mandatory control in Palestine would require such relations between the Arabs and the Jews as would make good government possible. Moreover, the growth of self-governing institutions in Palestine, as in other countries, must be an evolutionary process. A transitional period will be required before independence is achieved, throughout which ultimate responsibility for the Government of the country will be retained by His Majesty’s Government as the Mandatory authority, while the people of the country are taking an increasing share of the Government, and understanding and cooperation amongst them are growing. It will be the constant endeavour of His Majesty’s Government to promote good relations between Arabs and Jews. In light of these consideration His Majesty’s Government make the following declaration of their intentions regarding the future government of Palestine: The objective of His Majesty’s Government is the establishment within 10 years of an independent Palestine State in such treaty relations with the United Kingdom as will provide satisfactorily for the commercial and strategic requirements of both countries in the future. The proposal for the establishment of the independent State would involve consultation with the Council of the League of Nations with a view to the termination of the Mandate.
The independent State should be one in which Arabs and Jews share government in such a way as to ensure that the essential interests of each community are safeguarded. The establishment of the independent State will be preceded by a transitional period throughout which His Majesty’s Government will retain responsibility for the Appendix (continued) The White Paper of 1939, Continued country. During the transitional period the people of Palestine will be given an increasing part in the government of their country. Both sections of the population will have an opportunity to participate in the machinery of government, and the process will be carried on whether or not they both avail themselves of it. As soon as peace and order have been sufficiently restored in Palestine, steps will be taken to carry out this policy of giving the people of Palestine an increasing part in the government of their country, the objective being to place Palestinians in charge of all the Departments of Government, with the assistance of British advisers and subject to the control of the High Commissioner. Arab and Jewish representatives will be invited to serve as heads of Departments approximately in proportion to their respective populations. The number of Palestinians in charge of Departments will be increased as circumstances permit until all heads of Departments are Palestinians, exercising the administrative and advisory functions which are presently performed by British officials. When that stage is reached consideration will be given to the question of converting the Executive Council into a Council of Ministers with a consequential change in the status and functions of the Palestinian heads of Departments. His Majesty’s Government make no proposals at this state regarding the establishment of an elective legislature. Nevertheless they would regard this as an appropriate constitutional development, and, should public opinion in Palestine hereafter show itself in fa-
vour of such a development, they will be prepared, provided the local conditions permit, to establish the necessary machinery. At the end of five years from the restoration of peace and order, an appropriate body representative of the people of Palestine and His Majesty’s Government will be set up to review the working of the constitutional arrangements during the transitional period and to consider and make recommendations regarding the constitution of the independent Palestine State. His Majesty’s Government will require to be satisfied that in the treaty contemplated by sub-paragraph (6) adequate provisions will be made for: the security of, and freedom of access to the Holy Places, and protection of the interests and property of the various religious bodies, the protection of the different communities in Palestine in accordance with the obligations of His Majesty’s Government to both Arabs and Jews and for the special position in Palestine of the Jewish National Home, Appendix (continued) The White Paper of 1939, Continued such requirements to meet the strategic situation as may be regarded as necessary by His Majesty’s Government in the light of the circumstances then existing. His Majesty’s Government will also require to be satisfied that the interests of certain foreign countries in Palestine, for the preservation of which they are at present responsible, are adequately safeguarded. His Majesty’s Government will do everything in their power to create conditions which will enable the independent Palestine State to come into being within 10 years. If, at the end of 10 years, it appears to His Majesty’s Government that, contrary to their hope, cir-
cumstances require the postponement of the establishment of the independent State, they will consult with representatives of the people of Palestine, the Council of the League of Nations and the neighbouring Arab States before deciding on such a postponement. If His Majesty’s Government come to the conclusion that postponement is unavoidable, they will invite the co-operation of these parties in framing plans for the future with a view to achieving the desired objective at the earliest possible date. During the transitional period steps will be taken to increase the powers and responsibilities of municipal corporations and local councils. Section II. Immigration Under Article 6 of the Mandate, the Administration of Palestine, ‘while ensuring that the rights and position of other sections of the population are not prejudiced,” is required to ‘facilitate Jewish immigration under suitable conditions.’ Beyond this, the extent to which Jewish immigration into Palestine is to be permitted is nowhere defined in the Mandate. But in the Command Paper of 1922 (Churchill’s White Paper of 1922) it was laid down that for the fulfillment of the policy of establishing a Jewish National Home: ‘It is necessary that the Jewish community in Palestine should be able to increase its numbers by immigration. This immigration cannot be so great in volume as to exceed whatever may be the economic capacity of the country at the time to absorb new arrivals. It is essential to ensure that the immigrants should not be a burden upon the people of Palestine as a whole, and that they should not deprive any section of the present population of their employment.’ In practice, from that date onwards until recent times, the economic absorptive capacity of the country has been treated as the sole limiting factor, and in the letter which Mr. Ramsay MacDonald, as Prime Minister, sent to Dr. Weizmann in February 1931 it was laid down as a matter of policy that economic absorptive capacity was the sole criterion.
This interpretation has been supported by resolutions of the Permanent Mandates Commissioner. But His Majesty’s Government do not read Appendix (continued) The White Paper of 1939, Continued either the Statement of Policy of 1922 or the letter of 1931 as implying that the Mandate requires them, for all time and in all circumstances, to facilitate the immigration of Jews into Palestine subject to consideration of the country’s economic absorptive capacity. Nor do they find anything in the Mandate or in subsequent Statement of Policy to support the view that the establishment of the Jewish National Home in Palestine cannot be effected unless immigration is allowed to continue indefinitely. If immigration has an adverse effect on the economic position in the country, it should clearly be restricted; and equally, if it has a seriously damaging effect on the political position in the country, that is a factor that should not be ignored. Although it is not difficult to contend that a large number of Jewish immigrants who have been admitted so far have been absorbed economically, the fear of the Arabs that this influx will continue indefinitely until the Jewish population is in a position to dominate them has produced consequences which are extremely grave for Jews and Arabs alike and for the peace and prosperity of Palestine. The lamentable disturbances of the past three years are only the latest and most sustained manifestation of this intense Arab apprehension. The methods employed by Arab terrorists against fellow Arabs and Jews alike must receive unqualified condemnation. But it cannot be denied that fear of an indefinite Jewish immigration is widespread amongst the Arab population and that this fear has made possible disturbances which have given a serious setback to economic progress, depleted the Palestine exchequer, rendered life and property insecure, and produced a bitterness between the Arab and Jewish populations which is deplorable between citizens of the same country. If in these circumstances immigration is continued up to the economic absorptive capacity of the country, regardless of all other considerations, a fatal enmity between the two peoples will be perpetuated, and the situation in Palestine may become a permanent source of friction amongst all peoples in the Near and Middle East. His Majesty’s Government
cannot take the view that either their obligations under the Mandate, or considerations of common sense and justice, require that they should ignore these circumstances in framing immigration policy. In the view of the Royal Commission the association of the policy of the Balfour Declaration with the Mandate system implied the belief that Arab hostility to the former would sooner or later be overcome. It has been the hope of British Governments ever since the Balfour Declaration was issued that in time the Arab population, recognizing the advantages to be derived from Jewish settlement and development in Palestine, would become reconciled to the further growth of the Jewish National Home. This hope has not been fulfilled. The alternatives before His Majesty’s Government are either (i) to seek to expand the Jewish National Home indefinitely by immigration, against the strongly expressed will of the Arab people of the country; or (ii) to permit further expansion of the Jewish National Home by immigration only if the Arabs are prepared to acquiesce in it. The former policy means rule Appendix (continued) The White Paper of 1939, Continued by force. Apart from other considerations, such a policy seems to His Majesty’s Government to be contrary to the whole spirit of Article 22 of the Covenant of the League of Nations, as well as to their specific obligations to the Arabs in the Palestine Mandate. Moreover, the relations between the Arabs and the Jews in Palestine must be based sooner or later on mutual tolerance and goodwill; the peace, security and progress of the Jewish National Home itself requires this. Therefore His Majesty’s Government, after earnest consideration, and taking into account the extent of which the growth of the Jewish National Home has been facilitated over the past twenty years, have decided that the time has come to adopt in principle the second of the alternatives referred to above.
It has been urged that all further Jewish immigration into Palestine should be stopped forthwith. His Majesty’s Government cannot accept such a proposal. It would damage the whole of the financial and economic system of Palestine and thus effect adversely the interests of Arabs and Jews alike. Moreover, in view of His Majesty’s Government, abruptly to stop further immigration would be unjust to the Jewish National Home. But, above all, His Majesty’s Government are conscious of the present unhappy plight of large numbers of Jews who seek refuge from certain European countries, and they believe that they will be acting consistently with their Mandatory obligations to both Arabs and Jews, and in a manner best calculated to serve the interests of the whole people of Palestine, by adopting the following proposals regarding immigration. Jewish immigration during the next five years will be at a rate which, if economic absorptive capacity permits, will bring the Jewish population up to approximately one third of the total population of the country. Taking into account the expected natural increase of the Arab and Jewish populations, and the number of illegal Jewish immigrants now in the country, this would allow of the admission, as from the beginning of April of this year, some 75,000 immigrants over the next five years. These immigrants would, subject to the criterion of economic absorptive capacity, be admitted as follows: For each of the next five years a quota of 10,000 Jewish immigrants will be allowed on the understanding that a shortage one year may be added to the quotas for subsequent years, within a five year period, if economic absorptive capacity permits. In addition, as a contribution towards the solution of the Jewish refugee problem, 25,000 refugees will be admitted as soon as the High Commissioner is Appendix (continued) The White Paper of 1939, Continued
satisfied that adequate provision for their maintenance is ensured, special consideration being given to refugee children and dependents. The existing machinery for ascertaining economic absorptive capacity will be retained, and the High Commissioner will have the ultimate responsibility for deciding the limits of economic capacity. Before each periodic decision is taken, Jewish and Arab representatives will be consulted. After a period of five years, no further Jewish immigration will be permitted unless the Arabs of Palestine are prepared to acquiesce in it. His Majesty’s Government are determined to check illegal immigration, and further preventive measures are being adopted. The numbers of any Jewish illegal immigrants who, despite these measures, may succeed in coming into the country and cannot be deported will be deducted from the yearly quotas. His Majesty’s Government are satisfied that, when the immigration over five years which is now contemplated has taken place, they will not be justified in facilitating, nor will they be under any obligation to facilitate, the further development of the Jewish National Home by immigration regardless of the wishes of the Arab population. Section III. Land The Administration of Palestine is required, under Article 6 of the Mandate, ‘While ensuring that the rights and position of other sections of the population are not prejudiced,’ to encourage ‘close settlement by Jews on the land,’ and no restriction has been imposed hitherto on the transfer of land from Arabs to Jews. The Reports of several expert Commissions have indicated that, owing to the natural growth of the Arab population
and the steady sale in recent years of Arab land to Jews, there is now in certain areas no room for further transfers of Arab land, whilst in some other areas such transfers of land must be restricted if Arab cultivators are to maintain their existing standard of life and a considerable landless Arab population is not soon to be created. In these circumstances, the High Commissioner will be given general powers to prohibit and regulate transfers of land. These powers will date from the publication of this statement of policy and the High Commissioner will retain them throughout the transitional period. Appendix (continued) The White Paper of 1939, Continued The policy of the Government will be directed towards the development of the land and the improvement, where possible, of methods of cultivation. In the light of such development it will be open to the High Commissioner, should he be satisfied that the ‘rights and position’ of the Arab population will be duly preserved, to review and modify any orders passed relating to the prohibition or restriction of the transfer of land. In framing these proposals His Majesty’s Government have sincerely endeavoured to act in strict accordance with their obligations under the Mandate to both the Arabs and the Jews. The vagueness of the phrases employed in some instances to describe these obligations has let to controversy and has made the take of interpretation difficult. His Majesty’s Government cannot hope to satisfy the partisans of one party or the other in such controversy as the Mandate has aroused. Their purpose is to be just between the two people in Palestine whose destinies in that country have been affected by the great events of recent years, and who, since they live side by side, must learn to practice mutual tolerance, goodwill and co-operation. In looking to the future, His Majesty’s Government are not blind to the fact that some events of the past make the task of creating these relations difficult; but they are encouraged by the knowledge that at any times and in many places in Palestine during recent years the Arab and Jewish inhabitants have lived in friendship together. Each community has much to contribute to the welfare of their common land,
and each must earnestly desire peace in which to assist in increasing the well being of the whole people of the country. The responsibility which falls on them, no less than upon His Majesty’s Government, to co-operate together to ensure peace is all the more solemn because their country is revered by millions of Moslems, Jews and Christians throughout the world who pray for peace in Palestine and for the happiness of her people.” ___________________ It is clear, despite the smoke screen of legalisms and high moral statements with regard to His Majesty’s Government’s duties and obligations, that at least some members of the government were beginning to understand the consequences that Lord Balfour’s Declaration was leading them into, and were hopeful of finding a way out. As may be supposed, the Zionists were not happy with this development, and considered it a major setback to their plans reaffirmed by Ben Gurion in 1931, for the establishment of a Jewish Commonwealth in Palestine, requiring “transfer” of Palestinians to other Arab territories. Their furious response was to increase illegal immigration into Palestine which, despite tightened immigration proceAppendix (continued) The Anglo-American Inquiry Committee dures, the British were unable to control. Jewish terrorist activities were stepped up, and Jewish political pressures were transferred to the American Congress and Presidency. In May, 1942, Jewish representatives in New York announced their Biltmore Program calling for U.S. political support for creation of a Jewish State in Palestine through unlimited immigration. Meanwhile, in 1944 a British High Commissioner narrowly escaped death in an ambush outside Jerusalem,
and the British Minister of State in the Middle East was assassinated in Cairo. Both terrorist attacks were attributed to the Stern Gang, a Zionist terrorist unit. In 1945 the transfer of political influence from British to American governments had achieved its aims. With the involvement of Congress and the careful tutelage of the recently widowed Eleanor Roosevelt, newly President Harry Truman was moved to call on Britain to open the flood gates to Palestine and admit 100,000 “homeless” Jews. Meanwhile the Jewish terrorists’ activities continued, blowing up a wing of the King David Hotel in Jerusalem housing British offices and murdering British officials.
The Anglo-American Inquiry Committee (1946) Britain’s 1946 response was to form another committee, this time with the increasingly powerful U.S. participation, which 12 member bilateral committee under pressure from the even more powerful Zionists rejected the many British promises to Arab leaders for creation of an independent Palestine, proposing instead creation of a permanent United Nations Trusteeship over Palestine, pending which the Mandate would remain in force. Despite its clinging to the Balfour Declaration, it was clear Britain had had enough. — Zionist terrorism had won out. More immediately, the committee recommended that the earlier land transfer regulations be rescinded to permit the buying of more Palestinian lands by Jews, and the immediate issuance of 100,000 immigration permits, both of which were set aside by the British government for future consideration.
Appendix (continued) The U.N. Resolutions
The U.N. Resolutions On April 4, 1946, the League of Nations was officially dissolved and its many departments, such as the International Court of Justice, International Bank for Reconstruction and Development, World Health Organization, and other agencies, were absorbed into a new global authority created by the victorious world powers in 1945, the United Nations. For the Palestinians, 28 years later, the U.N. became their last, best hope for justice. That hope was short-lived. Despite hundreds of resolutions in both Security Council and General Assembly, it was unable to stop the Zionist depredations. In a March, 1993, issue of Washington Report, p. 40, Donald Neff reported that the recent Clinton-Rabin agreement orchestrated by Israel, with the help of her American supporters, was clearly intended to shield Israel from U.N. sanctions ignored during the 26 years of “Israel’s conquest of the West Bank, Gaza, East Jerusalem, and the Golan Heights”. Israel petitioned for membership in the U.N. in 1949, then promptly began defying U.N. resolutions made by the member nations to curb her aggressions in the occupied territories. “There remain on the books of the United Nations a collec-
tion of resolutions criticizing Israel unmatched by the record of any other nation.” The key issues, which the U.N. have been unsuccessful in resolving, almost exclusively as a result of U.S. opposition in the flagrant abuse of its veto power, continue since 1948 to be the refugee problem, the status of Jerusalem, and the legal Israel boundaries. Subsidiary issues in resolutions ignored by Israel include condemnation of its unlawful attacks on its neighbors, its codifications legalizing torture of civilians, its violations of the human rights of Palestinians, “including deportations, demolitions of homes and other collective punishments; its confiscation of Palestinian land and property; its construction of illegal settlements on Palestinian land; and its refusal to abide by the U.N. Charter and the 1949 Fourth Geneva Convention relative to its practice of killing women and children refugees. Despite all the deflecting rhetoric by American officials, the reasons for the serious deterioration in U.S. reputation abroad and mounting hatred towards it in the international society, which found its expression in September 11th, 2001, is, in large part, due to the U.S. continued abuse of its U.N. veto in protecting Israel Appendix (continued) The U.N. Resolutions
from world censure for its crimes. Despite their calls for peace, members of the Congress are no more interested in peace than their Israeli clients. This is clear, not only from the statements of Israelis over the years, but by their actions. Their insistence on expelling Palestinians in growing numbers and the establishment of permanent settlements in the occupied territories are the clearest statement of
their intentions: not peace for land but expulsion of Palestinians and permanent confiscation of their land and property. Thus, it is clear that U.S. politicians are major sponsors of September 11th. Israel’s half-century of crimes against the Palestinians, and the U.S. complicity in them, are well known throughout the world. “In 23 separate cases between 1972 and 2001, the United States has vetoed resolutions critical of Israel. . .Such a list of resolutions passed and resolutions vetoed is unparalleled in United Nations history. The list in itself forms a stunning indictment of Israel’s unlawful and uncivilized actions over a period of 45 years and of America’s complicity in them.” Although Israel’s defiance of U.N. resolutions dates back to Security Council Resolution 42 in March, 1948, the first U.S. veto intended to shield Israel from condemnation after its unprovoked attack on Syria and Lebanon in violation of international law and its open breach of its agreement to abide by the U.N. Charter was made by the Nixon Administration in July 1972 . As Israel got increasing U.S. financial and military aid, so did its violations of Palestinian rights grow more flagrant. Following is a comprehensive list of U.N. resolutions passed with respect to Jewish/Arab problems in Palestine followed by a list of the proposed resolutions vetoed by the United States in support of Israel actions in Palestine.
Appendix (continued) The U.N. Resolutions Here is a comprehensive list of the U.N. Palestine resolutions through September 24, 2002: Date 8/29/46 3/5/48 4/1/48 4/1/48 4/17/48 4/23/48 5/22/48 Resolution S/Res/8 S/Res/42 S/Res/44 S/Res/43 S/Res/46 S/Res/48 S/Res/49 Title/ Subject U.N. Resolution 8: membership application of Transjordan. Problem of security in Palestine. Requests General Assembly special session re violence in Palestine. Violence & disorder in Palestine, cease armed groups violence Call for truce between Arabs & Jews. Establishment of truce commission. Cease fire order of truce commission.
5/29/48 7/7/48 7/15/48 8/19/48 9/18/48 10/19/48 11/4/48 11/16/48 12/29/48 3/4/49 8/11/49 8/11/49 S/Res/50 S/Res/53 S/Res/54 S/Res/56 S/Res/57 S/Res/59 S/Res/61 S/Res/62 S/Res/66 S/Res/69 S/Res/73 S/Res/72 Hostilities in Palestine. Observers. Extension of truce. Situation in Palestine threat to peace. Situation in Palestine: truce violations. Assassination of Count Folke Bernadotte, U.N. mediator. Assassination report, truce problems. Calls for withdrawal of forces Armistice for permanent peace. Conciliation commission to establish. Israel membership Armistice agreement. Tribute to Bernadotte, mediators, observers in Palestine. 11/17/50 S/Res/89 Expulsion of Palestine Arabs/return of permanent peace in Palestine. 5/8/51 5/18/51 9/1/51 S/Res/92 S/Res/93 S/Res/95 Israel/Syria. Cease fighting. Israel/Syria armistice. Hostilities/Suez Canal/Return of permanent peace in Palestine. 10/27/53 11/24/53 S/Res/100 S/Res/101 Water works in demilitarized zone. Censure Israel attack on Qibya, requests Jordan to prevent crossings.
3/29/55 3/30/55 9/8/55 1/19/56
S/Res/106 S/Re/107 S/Res/108 S/Res/111
Mideast situation/Egypt Mideast situation/Egypt Mideast situation/Egypt. Condemns Israel’s attack as cease-fire violation.
Appendix (continued) The U.N. Resolutions Continued Date 4/4/56 10/13/56 10/13/56 10/31/56 Resolution S/Res/114 S/Res/118 (“ S/3675) S/Res/119 Title/Subject Sec. Gen. mission to Mideast. Mideast situation/Suez Canal. Egypt/Suez Question. General Assembly special session call /Egypt 1/22/58 6/11/58 S/Res/127 S/Res/129 Jerusalem/Government House General Assembly special session call/Jordan/Lebanon. 4/11/61 4/9/62 11/25/66 S/Res/162 S/Res/171 S/Res/228 Mideast situation/Jordan Mideast situation/Syria Mideast situation/Hebron
6/6/67 6/7/67 6/9/67 6/11/67 6/14/67 10/25/67 11/22/67
S/Res/233 S/Res/234 S/Res/235 S/Res/236 S/Res/237 S/Res/240 S/Res/242
Mideast situation Mideast situation Israel/Syria cease-fire. Cease-fire violations. Displaced persons/Return of inhabitants/human rights. Recent military activities. Observe U.N. Charter Article 2./withdraw from occupied territories.
3/24/68 4/27/68 5/2/68 5/21/68 8/16/68 9/18/68 9/27/68 12/31/68
S/Res/248 S/Res/250 S/Res/251 S/Res/252 S/Res/256 S/Res/258 S/Res/259 S/Res/262
Condemns Israel’s attack on Jordan. Condemns Israel’s military parade in Jerusalem. Jerusalem/Military parade. Israel action invalid. Condemns Israel’s further military attacks. Cease-fire ordered/Special representative assigned. Safety, Welfare of inhabitants. Condemns Israel’s attack on Beirut airport.
Condemns Israel’s air attacks on Jordanian villages.
7/3/69 8/26/69 9/15/69 5/12/70 5/19/70 9/5/70 9/9/70 S/Res/267 S/Res/270 S/Res/271 S/Res/279 S/Res/280 S/Res/285 S/Res/286 Mideast situation/ Jerusalem Mideast sit’n/Lebanon Al-Aqsa arson damage. Mideast situation in/Lebanon Lebanon Lebanon Aircraft hijacking
Appendix (continued) The U.N. Resolutions Continued
Date 9/25/71 2/28/72 6/26/72 7/21/72 4/20/73 4/21/73 8/15/73 10/22/73 10/23/73 10/25/73 10/27/73 12/15/73 4/8/74 4/24/ 74
Resolution S/Res/298 S/Res/313 S/Res/316 S/Res/317 S/Res/331 S/Res/332 S/Res/337 S/Res/338 S/Res/339 S/Res/340 S/Res/341 S/Res/344 S/Res/346 S/Res/347
Title/Subject Jerusalem Mideast situationn/Lebanon Lebanon/Syria Syria/Lebanon Mideast situation Lebanon Lebanese airline incident. Negotiations to start. Mideast situation. Establishing UNEF II UNEF Mideast peace conference. Mideast situation/UNEF Situation in Lebanon.
10/23/74 4/17/75 7/24/75 10/23/75 10/21/77 10/6/78 10/23/78 3/22/79 7/20/79 S/Res/362 S/Res/368 S/Res/371 S/Res/378 S/Res/416 S/Res/436 S/Res/438 S/Res/446 S/Res/452 Mideast situation/UNEF Mideast situation/UNEF Mideast situation/UNEF Mideast situation/UNEF Mideast situation/UNEF Lebanon/Beirut Mideast situation/UNEF Israeli settlements/4th Geneva Convention Israeli settlements/4th Geneva Convention 3/1/80 5/8/80 5/20/80 6/5/80 6/30/80 8/20/80 12/16/80 6/19/81 7/21/81 S/Res/465 S/Res/468 S/Res/469 S/Res/471 S/Res/476 S/Res/478 S/Res/484 S/Res/487 S/Res/490 Israeli settlements/4th Geneva Convention Expulsion of Palestinian Leaders. Expulsion of Palestinian Leaders Situation in OPT Jerusalem/Israeli Knesset. Jerusalem/Basic Law Expulsions Attack on Iraq Nuclear Inst. Situation in Lebanon
12/17/81 6/5/82 6/6/82 6/19/82 7/4/82 7/29/82 S/Res/497 S/Res/508 S/Res/509 S/Res/512 S/Res/513 S/Res/515 Mideast situation/Golan. Situation in Lebanon. Situation in Lebanon. Situation in Lebanon Situation in Lebanon Situation in Lebanon
Appendix (continued) The U.N. Resolutions Continued Date 8/01/82 8/4/82 8/12/82 9/17/82 9/19/82 1/23/83 3/18/85 Resolution S/Res/516 S/Res/517 S/Res/518 S/Res/520 S/Res/521 S/Res/542 A/40/173 S/17033 5/31/85 10/4/85 S/Res/564 S/Res/573 Title/Subject Situation in Lebanon Situation in Lebanon Situation in Lebanon Incursions into Beirut Sabra and Shatila Situation in Lebanon Palestine question— Documents of the 15 Islamic FM Conference. Situation in Lebanon, humanitarian assistance. Attack on PLO Hq.
12/08/86 12/22/87 S/Res/592 S/Res/605 Situation in OPT Situation in OPT, safety and protection. 1/05088 1/14/88 4/25/88 S/Res/607 S/Res/608 S/Res/611 Deportation of Palestinians Deportation of Palestinians Mideast situation/Khalil El Wizar 7/6/89 8/30/89 10/12/90 10/24/90 12/20/90 S/Res/636 S/Res/641 S/Res/672 S/Res/673 S/Res/681 Deportations of Palestinians. Deportations Jerusalem/Al-Haram alShareef incidents Situation in OPT (Occupied Palestinian Territories) Deportations/Protection efforts/4th Geneva Convention meeting/UN monitoring. 5/24/91 9/24/91 1/6/92 2/18/92 3/18/94 S/Res/694 A/46/493 S/Res/726 S/Res/799 S/Res/904 Deportations 85th Inter-Parliamentary Conference Deportations Deportations Hebron/Measures to guarantee safety and protecttion.
4/7/94 A/48/923 Situation in Jerusalem/LAS resolution/letter from Lebanon.
Appendix (continued) The U.N. Resolutions Continued Date 7/29/94 Resolution A/49/287 Title/Subject NAM documents, 11th Ministerial meeting/Letter from Egypt. 9/28/96 4/21/87 9/17/99 4/19/2000 10/7/00 10/21/00 10/31/00 1/11/01 S/Res/1073 Jerusalem tunnel. A/51/883 Golan/LAS resolution/ Letter from Kuwait.
S/Res/1265 Sec Co resolution S/Res/1296 Sec Co resolution S/Res/1322 Mideast situation/Palestine A/55/621 S/2000/18 Inter-Parliamentary Conf./ Letter from Indonesia.
S/Res/1325 Sec Co resolution A/55/716 Documents, 9th Islamic Summit.
S/2000/1236 Letter from Qatar.
5/17/01 5/17/01 6/13/01 9/28/01 3/12/02 vision. 3/23/02 3/30/02 4/4/02 4/19/02 team 9/23/02 9/24/02 S/2002/1081 Lebanon S/Res/1435 Palestine question. A/57/84 Two state vision/letter S/2002/645 from Morocco. S/Res/1402 Palestine question. S/Res/1403 Palestine question/”Quartet” efforts S/Res/1405 Humanitarian situation/ Jenin fact-finding . A/55/944 A/55/943 East Jerusalem/archaeological sites/ Jerusalem/LAS Council
S/2001/491 LAS resolution/letter from Palestine. S/2001/490 resolution/letter from Palestine. S/Res/1353 Peacekeeping operations. S/Res/1373 International terrorism. S/Res/1397 Palestine Question/Two- state Israel-Palestine
_______________________♦___________________ Draft Resolutions Vetoed by the U.S. The U.S. vetoes have had only one purpose: to protect Israel’s violations of international law, and its violations of the Charter which it agreed to abide by in 1949. From Israel’s perspective, rather than aid the peace process, they are aimed at destabilizing the peace process and preventing return of Palestinian homes and property to their legal owners.
Following are the draft resolutions proposed by the 15 nation Security Council with five permanent members, France, Russia, China, the U.K .and the U.S., and 10 non-permanent members elected for two-year terms from among its almost 200 members. (Note: Draft resolution numbers are document numbers, not resolution numbers.): Appendix (continued) U.N. Draft Resolutions Vetoed by U.S. Continued
S/10974 Of July 24, 1973 (13 in favor, U.S. veto, China did not participate.) Emphasizing further that all Members of the U.N. are committed to respect the resolutions of the Security Council in accordance with the provisions of the Charter, Reaffirming resolution 242 (1967) of 22 November 1967. Conscious that the rights of Palestinians have to be safeguarded, Deeply regrets that the Secretary-General was unable to report any significant progress by him or by his Special Representative in carrying out the terms of resolution 242 (1967), and that nearly six years after its adoption a just and lasting peace in the Middle East has still not been achieved. Strongly deplores Israel’s continuing occupation of the territories occupied as a result of the 1967 conflict contrary to the principals of the Charter;
Expresses serious concern at Israel’s lack of cooperation with the Special Representative of the Secretary-General. Expresses its conviction that a just and peaceful solution of the problem of the Middle East can be achieved only on the basis of respect for national sovereignty, territorial integrity, the rights of all states in the area and for the rights and legitimate aspirations of the Palestinians; Declares that in the occupied territories no changes which may obstruct a peaceful and final settlement or which may adversely affect the political and other fundamental rights of all the inhabitants in these territories should be introduced. S/11940 of 23 January 1976 (9 in favor, U.S. veto, 3 abstentions Italy, Sweden, UK, China and Libya did not participate in the vote). Having heard the representatives of parties concerned, including the Palestine Liberation Organization, representatives of the Palestinian people, Convinced that the question of Palestine is the core of the conflict in the Middle East, Expressing its concern over the continuing deterioration of the situation in the Middle East, and deeply deploring Israel’s persistence in its occupation of Arab territories and its refusal to implement the relevant United Nations resolutions, Reaffirming further the principle of inadmissibility of acquisition of territories by the threat of force,
Affirms (a) That the Palestinian people should be enabled to exercise its inalienable national right of self-determination, including the right to estabAppendix (continued) U.N. Draft Resolutions Vetoed by U.S. Continued lish and independent state in Palestine in accordance with the Charter of the U.N.; (b) The right of Palestinian refugees wishing to return to their homes and live at peace with their neighbors to do so and the right of those choosing not to return to receive compensation for their property; (c) That Israel should withdraw from all the Arab territories occupied since June 1967, (d) That appropriate arrangements should be established to guarantee, in accordance with the Charter of the United Nations, the sovereignty, territorial integrity and political independence of all States in the area and their right to live in peace within secure and recognized boundaries. S/12022 of 24 March 1976 (14 in favor, U.S. veto) Deeply concerned further of the measures taken by Israeli authorities leading to the present grave situation, including measures aimed at changing the physical, cultural, demographic and religious character of the occupied territories and, in particular, the City of Jerusalem, the establishments of Israeli settlements in the occupied territories and other violations of the human rights of the inhabitants of those territories.
Recalling and reaffirming the resolutions of the General Assembly and Security Council calling upon Israel to rescind all measures already taken and to desist from taking any further action which alter the status of the City of Jerusalem and the character of the occupied territories. Deplores Israel’s failure to put a stop to actions and policies tending to change the status of the City of Jerusalem and to rescind measures already taken to that effect. Calls on Israel, pending the speedy termination of its occupation, to refrain from all measures against the Arab inhabitants of the occupied territories. Calls on Israel to respect and uphold the inviolability of the Holy Places which are under its occupation and to desist from the expropriation of or encroachment upon Arab lands and property or the establishment of Israeli settlements thereon in the occupied Arab territories and to desist from all actions and policies designed to change the legal status of the City of Jerusalem and rescind all such measures already taken to that effect.
S/12119 of 29 June 1976 (10 in favor, U.S. veto, 4 abstentions— France, Italy, Sweden, UK). Having considered the item entitled “The question of the exercise by the Palestinian people of its inalienable rights”. Deeply concerned that no just solution to the problem of Palestine has been achieved, and that this problem therefore continues to aggravate the Arab-
Appendix (continued) U.N. Draft Resolutions Vetoed by U.S. Continued
Israeli conflict, of which it is the core, and to endanger international peace and security, Affirms the inalienable rights of the Palestinian people to self-determination , including the right of return and the right of national independence and sovereignty of Palestine, in accordance with the Charter of the U.N.. S/13911 of 28 April 1980 (10 in favor, U.S. veto, 4 abstentions — France, Norway, Portugal, UK) Having considered the report of the Committee on the Exercise of Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People, Having heard the representatives of the parties concerned, including the Palestine Liberation Organization, Expressing its concern over the continuing deterioration of the situation in the Middle East, and deeply deploring Israel’s persistence in its occupation of Palestinian and other Arab territories, including Jerusalem, and its refusal to implement the relevant U.N. resolutions,
Affirms: (a) that the Palestinian people, in accordance to the Charter of the U.N. should be enabled to exercise its inalienable national right of self-determination, including the right to establish an independent State in Palestine. (b) The right of Palestinian refugees wishing to return to their homes and live at peace with their neighbors to do so, and the right of those choosing not to return to receive equitable compensation for their property. Reaffirms that Israel should withdraw from all the Arab territories occupied since June 1967, including Jerusalem. Decides that appropriate arrangements should be established to guarantee, in accordance with the Charter of the U.N., the sovereignty, territorial integrity and political independence of all States in the area, including the sovereign independent State of Palestine, and the right to live in peace within secure and recognized boundaries. S/14943 of 1 April 1982 (13 in favor, U.S. veto, 1 abstention —Zaire) Denounces measures imposed on the Palestinian population such as the dismissal of elected mayors by Israel authorities, as well as the violation of the liberties and rights of the inhabitants of the occupied West Bank and the Gaza Strip which followed the measures taken by Israel with regard to the Golan Heights, and which could only damage the prospects of peace. Calls upon Israel, the occupying Power, to rescind its decision disbanding the elected municipal council of El Bireh and its decision to remove from their posts the Mayors of Nablus and Ramallah, Reaffirms that all the pro-
Appendix (continued) U.N. Draft Resolutions Vetoed by U.S. Continued
visions of the Geneva Convention relative to the Protection of Civilian Persons in Time of War of 12 August 1949 continue to apply in full to all of the occupied territories, Calls upon Israel to cease forthwith all measures applied in the West Bank, including Jerusalem, the Gaza Strip and the Syrian Golan Heights, which contravene the provisions of the Fourth Geneva Convention.
S/14985 of 2 April 1982 (14 in favor, U.S. veto). Having considered the letter of the Permanent Representative of Morocco, dated 12 April 1982, conveying the request of His Majesty King Hassan II of Morocco, Chairman of the Al-Quds Committee, Bearing in mind the unique status of Jerusalem and, in particular, the need for protection and preservation of the spiritual and religious dimensions of the Holy Places in the City, Recalling its relevant resolutions pertaining to the status and character of the City of Jerusalem, Deeply concerned over the sacrilegious acts perpetrated against the sanctity of Al-Haram Al-Sharif in Jerusalem 0n 11 April 1982 and the criminal acts of shoot-
ing worshippers, particularly inside the Dome of the Rock and the Al-Aqsa Mosque, Affirming once more that the Geneva Convention relative to the Protection of Civilian Persons in the Time of War of 12 August 1949 is applicable to all territories occupied by Isreal since 1967, including Jerusalem. Condemns in the strongest terms these appalling acts of sacrilege perpetrated within the precincts of Al-Haram Al-Sharif. Deplores any act or encouragement of destruction or profanation of the Holy Places, religious buildings and sites in Jerusalem as tending to disturb world peace. Calls upon Israel, the occupying Power, to observe and apply scrupulously the provisions of the Fourth Geneva Convention and the principles of international law governing military occupation and to refrain from causing any hindrance to the discharge of the established functions of the Higher Islamic Council in Jerusalem.
Appendix (continued) U.N. Draft Resolutions Vetoed by U.S. Continued
S/15185 of 8 June 1982 (14 in favor, U.S. veto) Recalling its resolutions 508 (1982) and 509 (1982), Also taking note of the two positive replies to the Secretary-General the Government of Lebanon and the Palestine Liberation Organization contained in document S/15178, Condemns the non-compliance with resolutions 508 (1982) and 509 (1982) by Israel, Urges the parties to comply strictly with the regulations attached to the Hague Convention of 1907, Reiterates its demand that Israel withdraw all its military forces forthwith and unconditionally to the internationally recognized boundaries of Lebanon. S/15255 of 25 June 1982 (14 in favor, U.S. veto) Recalling its resolutions 508 (1982) and 509 (1982),
Recalling also 512 (1982), which, inter alia, calls upon all parties to the conflict to respect the rights of the civilian populations, Seriously concerned at the constant deterioration of the situation in Lebanon, Profoundly apprehensive of the dangers of the extensions within Beirut, its capital, Demands once again that all the parties comply strictly with the provisions of paragraph 1 of resolution 508. Demands the immediate withdrawal of Israeli forces, engaged round Beirut, to a distance of x kilometers and the simultaneous withdrawal of the Palestinian armed forces from West Beirut, which shall retire to position to be determined, Further requests the Secretary-General to make proposals to the Security Council, in consultation with the government of Lebanon and with its agreement, for the installation of a U.N. force to take up positions beside the Lebanese interposition force, Requests the Secretary-General, an as immediate measure, to station U.N. military observers, by agreement with the government of Lebanon, with the instructions to supervise the cease-fire and disengagement in West Beirut and round Beirut.
Appendix (continued) U.N. Draft Resolutions Vetoed by U.S. Continued S/15347/Rev.1 of 6 August 1982 (11 in favor, U.S. veto, 3 abstentions — Togo, UK, Zaire). Deeply indignant at the refusal of Israel to comply with the decisions of the Security Council aimed at terminating the bloodshed in Beirut, Strongly condemns Israel for not implementing resolution 616 (1982) and 517 (1982); Demands that Israel immediately implement these resolutions fully; Decides that, in order to carry out the above-mentioned decisions of the Security Council, all the States Members of the U.N. should refrain from supplying Israel with any weapons and from providing it with any military aid until the full withdrawal of Israeli forces from all Lebanese territory.
S/15895 of 1 August 1983 (13 in favor, U.S. veto, 1 abstention — Zaire). Affirming that the situation in the occupied Arab territories remains grave and volatile and that the Israeli settlement policies and practices constitute a major obstacle to all efforts and initiatives towards a comprehensive, just and lasting peace in the Middle East. Affirming once more that the regulations annexed to the Hague Convention of 1907 and the provisions of the Geneva Convention relative to the Protection of
Civilian Persons in Time of War, of 12 August 1949, are applicable to the Arab territories occupied by Israel in 1967, including Jerusalem, Reaffirms all its relevant resolutions, Determines that the policies and practices of Israel in establishing settlements in the Palestinian and other Arab territories occupied in 1967, including Jerusalem, have no legal validity, constitute a major and serious obstruction to achieving a comprehensive, just and lasting peace in the Middle East and are in contravention with article 49(6) of the Geneva Convention relative to the Protection of Civilian Persons in Time of War, of 12 August 1949. Calls once more upon Israel, the occupying Power, to abide scrupulously by the provision of the above-mentioned Geneva Convention of 12 August 1949, to rescind its previous measures, to desist from taking any action which would result in changing the legal status and geographical nature and materially affecting the demographic composition of the Arab territories in 1967 and,in particular, not to transfer parts of its own population from these territories. Strongly deplores the continuation and persistence of Israel in pursuing those policies and practices and calls upon the Government and the people of Israel to rescind those measures, to dismantle the existing settlements, to desist from expanding and enlarging the existing ones and, in particular, to cease on an
Appendix (continued) U.N. Draft Resolutions Vetoed by U.S. Continued
urgent basis from the planning, constructing and establishment of new settlements in the Arab territories occupied in 1967, including Jerusalem. Rejects all Israeli arbitrary and illegal actions, especially those which result in the expulsion, deportation and forcible transfers of Arab populations from the occupied territories. Condemns the recent attacks perpetrated against Arab civilian population in the occupied territories, especially the killing and wounding of students at the Islamic College of the Arab city of Al-Khalil on 26 July 1983. Calls upon all States not to provide Israel with any assistance to be used specifically in the connection with the settlements in the occupied territories. Reaffirms its determination, in the event of non-compliance by Israel with the present resolution, to examine practical ways and means in accordance with the relevant provisions of the Charter of the U.N. to secure the full implementation of the present resolution, S/17459 of 13 September 1985 (10 in favor, U.S. veto, 4 abstentions — Australia, Denmark, France, UK) Recalling its resolution 468 (1980), 469 (1980) and 484 (1980), Taking note of the General Assembly resolution 35/122 of December 1980, Stressing the urgent need to achieve a comprehensive, just and lasting peace in the Middle East, Affirming again that the Geneva Convention relative to the Protection of Civilian Persons in time of War, of 12 August 1949, is applicable to the Arab territories occupied by Israel since 1967, including Jerusalem.
Deplores the repressive measures taken by Israel since 4 August 1985 against the civilian Palestine population in the Israeli occupied territories especially in the West Bank and Gaza and expresses serious concern that the persistence of Israeli authorities in applying such measures which lead to further deterioration of the situation in the occupied territories. Calls upon Israel, the occupying Power, to immediately stop all repressive measures including curfews, administrative detentions and forceful deportation and to release forthwith all detainees and refrain from further deportations. Further calls on Israel to abide scrupulously by the provisions of the Geneva Convention relative to the Protection of Civilian Persons in time of War, of 12 August 1949. S/17769/Rev.1 of 29 January 1986 (13 in favor, U.S. veto, 1 abstention — Thailand). Reaffirming that the Geneva Convention relative to the Protection of Civilian Persons in Time of War, of 12 August 1949, is applicable to the Arab territories occupied by Israel since 1967, including Jerusalem. Appendix (continued) U.N. Draft Resolutions Vetoed by U.S. Continued Bearing in mind the specific status of Jerusalem and, in particular, the need to protect and preserve the unique spiritual and religious dimensions of the Holy Places in the City,
Recalling and reaffirming its resolutions relevant to the status and character of the Holy City of Jerusalem, in particular resolutions 252 of 21 May 1968, 267 of 3 July and 271 of 15 September 1969, 298 of 25 September 1971, the consensus statement made by the President of the Security Council on 11 November 1976, resolutions 465 of 1 March 1980, 476 of 30 June 1980 and 478 of 20 August 1980, Strongly deploring the continued refusal of Israel, the occupying Power to comply with the relevant resolutions of the Security Council, Deeply concerned at the provocative acts by Israelis, including members of the Knesset, which have violated the sanctity of the Haram Al-Sharif in Jerusalem, Affirms that such acts constitute a serious obstruction to achieving a comprehensive, just and lasting peace in the Middle East, the failure of which could also endanger international peace and security. Determines once more that all measures taken by Israel to change the physical character, demographic composition, institutional structure or status of the Palestinian and other Arab territories occupied since 1967, including Jerusalem, or any part thereof, have no legal validity and that the policy and practices of Israel of settling parts of its population and new immigrants in those territories constitute a flagrant violation of the Geneva Convention relative to the Protection of Civilian Persons in Time of War, of 12 August 1949, and also constitute a serious obstruction of achieving a comprehensive, just and lasting peace in the Middle East. Reiterates that all legislative and administrative measures and actions taken by Israel, the occupying Power, which have altered or purport to alter, the character
and status of the Holy City of Jerusalem and in particular the “basic law” on Jerusalem are null and void and must be rescinded forthwith, Calls upon Israel, the occupying Power, to observe scrupulously the norms of international law governing military occupation, in particular the provisions of the Fourth Geneva Convention, and to prevent any hindrance to the discharge of the established functions of the Supreme Islamic Council in Jerusalem, including any cooperation that the Council may desire from countries with predominantly Muslim populations and from Muslim communities in relation to its plans for the maintenance and repair of the Islamic Holy Places; Urgently calls on Israel, the occupying Power, to implement forthwith the provisions of this resolution and the relevant Security Council resolutions. S/19466 of 29 January 1988 (14 in favor, U.S. veto) Expressing its grave concern over the increasing sufferings of the Palestine people in the occupied Palestinian territories, Appendix (continued) U.N. Draft Resolutions Vetoed by U.S. Continued
Bearing in mind the inalienable rights of all people recognized by the Charter of the U.N. and proclaimed by the Universal Declaration of Human Rights,
Reaffirming that the Geneva Convention relative to the Protection of Civilian Persons in Time of War, of 12 August 1949, is applicable to the Palestinian and other Arab territories occupied by Israel since 1967, including Jerusalem, Commending the International Committee of the Red Cross for its activities in the occupied territories, Commending also the United Nations Relief and Works Agency (U.N.R.W.A.) for its invaluable work, Conscious of the urgent need to resolve the underlying problem through a comprehensive, just and lasting settlement, including a solution to the Palestinian problem in all its aspects. 1. Expresses its deep appreciation to the Secretary-General for his report; 2. Calls upon Israel, as the occupying Power and as a High Contracting Party to the Geneva Convention relative to the Protection of Civilian Persons in Time of War, of 12 August 1949, to accept the de jure applicability of the Convention to the Palestinian and other Arab territories occupied since 1967, including Jerusalem, and to fully comply with its obligations under the convention. 3. Recalls the obligation of all the High Contracting Parties, under article 1 of the Convention, to ensure respect for the Convention in all circumstances, 4. Calls again upon Israel to desist forthwith from its policies and practices which violate the human rights of the Palestinian people.
5. Requests Israel to facilitate the task of the International Committee of the Red Cross and of the UNRWA and requests all Members to give them their full support; 6. Requests the Secretary-General to continue to monitor the situation in the occupied territories by all means available to him and to make regular and timely reports to the Council. 7. Affirms the urgent need to achieve, under the auspices of the U.N., a comprehensive, just and lasting settlement of the Arab/Israeli conflict, an integral part of which is the Palestinian problem, and expresses its determination to work towards that end.
S/19780 of 14 April 1988 (14 in favor, U.S. veto). Expressing its grave concern over the current situation in the occupied Palestinian territories, Appendix (continued) U.N. Draft Resolutions Vetoed by U.S. Continued
Reaffirming its resolutions 605 of 22 December 1987, 607 of 5 January 1988 and 608 of 14 January 1988, Recalling the report of the Secretary-General of 21 January 1988 (S/19443).
Having been apprized of the deportation by Israel, the Occupying Power, of eight civilian Palestinians on 11April 1988 and of its decision to continue the deportation of Palestinian civilians in the occupied territories, Gravely concerned and alarmed by the measures adopted by Israel against the civilian Palestinian people and its persistent policy of taking measures of collective punishment, such as the recent demotion of homes in the village of Beita, Also expressing grave concerns over the action taken by the forces of the occupying Power against Sheikh Saad Eddin E-Alami, Head of the Supreme Islamic Council who was assaulted and beaten in the Haram Al Sharif in Jerusalem, on 1 April 1988. Reaffirming once again that the Geneva Convention relative to the protection of Civilian Persons in Time of War, of 12 August 1949, is applicable to Palestinian and other Arab territories, occupied by Israel since 1967, including Jerusalem, Recalling in particular the provision of article 49 of the Fourth Geneva Convention and expressing alarm that Israel has continued to transfer its civilian population into the territory it occupies and has equipped those settlers with arms which have been used against the civilian Palestinian people. 1. Urges Israel, the occupying Power, to abide immediately and scrupulously by the Geneva Convention relative to the protection of Civilian Persons in Time of War, of 12 August 1949, and to desist forthwith from its policies and practices that are in violation of the provisions of the Convention.
2. Urges further Israel to rescind the order to deport Palestinian civilians and ensue the safe and immediate return to the occupied Palestinian territories of those already deported; 3. Urges once again Israel to desist forthwith from deporting Palestinian civilians from the occupied territories; 4. Condemns those policies and practices of Israel, the occupying Power, that violate the human rights of the Palestinian people in the occupied territories, and in particular the opening of fire by the Israeli army, resulting in the killing and wounding of defenseless Palestinian civilians; 5. Affirms the urgent need to achieve, under the auspices of the U.N., a comprehensive, just and lasting settlement of the Arab/Israeli conflict, an integral part of which is the Palestinian problem, and expresses its determination to work toward that end.
Appendix (continued) U.N. Draft Resolutions Vetoed by U.S. Continued S/20463 of 17 February 1989 (14 in favor, U.S. veto). Bearing in mind the inalienable rights of all peoples recognized by the Charter of the U.N. and proclaimed by the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, Gravely concerned over the increasing suffering and continued violation of the human rights of the Palestinian people in the Palestinian territory occupied by Israel since 1967, including Jerusalem,
Gravely concerned in particular over the imposition of new measures by Israel, the occupying Power, which have lead to increased injury and deaths of innocent Palestinian civilians, including children, Considering that the current policies and practices of Israel, the occupying Power, in the occupied territories are bound to have grave consequences for the endeavors to achieve comprehensive, just and lasting peace in the Middle East, Recalling the obligation of the High Contracting Parties under article 1 of the Fourth Geneva Convention, to ensure respect for the Convention in all circumstances, Conscious of the need to end the Israeli occupation and to achieve a comprehensive and lasting peace in the Middle East, 1. Strongly deplores Israel’s persistent policies and practices against the Palestinian people in the occupied Palestinian territory, especially the violation of the human rights, and in particular the opening of fire that has resulted in injuries and deaths of Palestinian civilians, including children; 2. Strongly deplores also the continuing disregard by Israel, the occupying power, of the relevant decisions of the Security Council, 3. Confirms once more that the Fourth Geneva Convention relative to the protection of Civilian Persons in Time of War, of 12 August 1949 is applicable to the Palestinian territory occupied by Israel since 1967, including Jerusalem, and the other occupied Arab territories;
4. Calls upon Israel, the occupying Power, to abide by the relevant resolutions of the Security Council, as well as to comply with its obligations under the Fourth Geneva Convention and to desist forthwith from its policies and practices that are in violation of the provisions of the Convention. 5. Affirms the urgent need to achieve, under the auspices of the U.N., a comprehensive , just and lasting settlement of the Middle East conflict, an integral part of which is the Palestinian Problem, and expresses its determination to work towards that end.
Appendix (continued) U.N. Draft Resolutions Vetoed by U.S. Continued S/20677 of 8 June 1989 (14 in favor, U.S. veto). Having considered the letter dated 31 May 1989 from the Permanent Representative of Sudan to the U.N. in his capacity as Chairman of the Group of Arab States at the U.N. for the month of May, Bearing in mind the inalienable rights of all peoples recognized by the Charter of the U.N. and proclaimed by the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, Recalling that the Geneva Convention relative to the Protection of Civilian Persons in Time of War, of 12 August 1949, is applicable to the Palestinian and other Arab territories occupied by Israel since 1967, including Jerusalem,
Recalling its relevant resolutions on the situation in the Palestinian territory occupied by Israel since 1967, including Jerusalem, and in particular its resolutions 466 (1979), 45 (1980), 607 (1988) and 608 (1988), Recalling the Secretary-General’s report of 21 January 1988 pursuant to resolution 605 (1987), and in particular the recommendations contained therein (S/19443), Expressing its grave concerns and alarm over the increasing sufferings of the Palestinian people in the occupied Palestinian territory, Having been apprized of the recent violations of the human rights of the Palestinian People in the occupied Palestinian territory, including Jerusalem, 1.Strongly deplores those policies and practices of Israel, the occupying Power, which violate the human rights of the Palestinian people in the occupied territory as well as vigilante attacks against Palestinian towns and villages and the desecration of the Holy Koran; 2.Calls upon Israel, the occupying Power and as a High Contracting Party to the Geneva Convention relative to the Protection of Civilian Persons in Time of War, of 12 August 1949, to accept the de jure applicability of the Convention to the Palestinian and other Arab territories occupied since 1967, including Jerusalem, and fully comply with its obligations under the Convention and in particular its “responsibility for the treatment accorded to the protected persons by its agents”, 3.Recalls the obligations of all High Contracting Parties, under article 1 of the Convention, to ensure respect for the Convention in all circumstances;
4.Demands that Israel desist forthwith from deporting Palestinian civilians from the occupied territory and ensure the safe and immediate return of those already deported; 5.Expresses great concern about the prolonged closure of schools in parts of the occupied territory, with all its adverse consequences for education Appendix (continued) U.N. Draft Resolutions Vetoed by U.S. Continued
of Palestinian children, and calls upon Israel to permit the immediate reopening of those schools; 6.Requests the Secretary-General to continue to monitor the situation in the occupied Palestinian territory by all means available to him, to make timely reports to the Council, including recommendations on ways and means to ensure respect for the Convention and protection of Palestinian civilians in the occupied territory, including Jerusalem, 7.Requests the Secretary-General to submit the first such report not later than 23 June 1989, 8.Decides to keep the situation in the Palestinian and other Arab territories occupied by Israel since 1967, including Jerusalem, under review.
S/20945/Rev.1 of 7 November 1989 (14 in favor, U.S. veto).
Having considered the letter dated 3 November 1989 from the Permanent Representative of Kuwait to the UN, in his capacity as Chairman of the Group of Arab States for the month of November, Recalling its relevant resolutions on the situation in the Palestinian and other Arab territories occupied by Israel since 1967, including Jerusalem, in particular resolution 605 (1987) of 22 December 1987, Taking note of General Assembly resolution 44/2 of 6 October 1989, Bearing in mind the inalienable rights of all peoples recognized by the Charter of the UN and proclaimed by the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, Recalling also the Geneva Convention relative to the Protection of Civilian Persons in Time of War, of 12 August 1949, Alarmed by the deteriorating situation in the Palestinian territory occupied by Israel since 1967, including Jerusalem. Having heard the statement concerning the policies and practices of Israel, the occupying Power, and the conduct of its troops and agents in those ter-ritories, as manifested in the town of Beit Sahur, other towns and refugee camps, Taking into account the immediate need to consider measures for the impartial and international protection of Palestinian civilian population under Israeli occupation,
Considering that the current policies and practices of Israel, the occupying Power, in the occupied territory are bound to have grave consequences for the endeavors to achieve comprehensive, just and lasting peace in the Middle East,
Appendix (continued) U.N. Draft Resolutions Vetoed by U.S. Continued
1.Strongly deplores those policies and practices of Israel, the occupying Power, which violate the human rights of the Palestinian people in the occupied territories, and in particular the siege of towns, the ransacking of the homes of inhabitants, as has happened at Beit Sahur, and the confiscation of their property and valuables; 2.Reaffirms once again that the Geneva Convention relative to the Protection of Civilian Persons in Time of War, of 12 August 1949, is applicable to the Palestinian and other Arab territories occupied by Israel since 1967, including Jerusalem; 3.Calls once again upon Israel, the occupying Power, to abide immediately and scrupulously by the Geneva Convention relative to the Protection of Civilian Persons in Time of War, of 12 August 1949, and to desist forthwith from its policies and practices that are in violation of the provisions of the Convention; 4.Calls upon all High Contracting parties to the Fourth Geneva Convention to ensure respect for it, including the obligation of the occupying Power under the Convention to treat the population of the occupied territory humanely at all times and in all circumstances.
5.Calls upon Israel to desist from committing such practices and actions and lift its siege, 6.Demands that Israel return the confiscated property to its owners; 7.Requests the Secretary-General to conduct on-site monitoring of the present situation in the Palestinian territory occupied since 1967, including Jerusalem, by all means available to him, and to submit periodic reports thereon, the first such report no later than 15 November 1989. S/21326 of 31 May 1990 (14 in favor, U.S. veto). Having listened to the statement by His Excellency President Yasser Arafat, Reaffirming that the Geneva Convention relative to the Protection of Civilian Persons in Time of War, of 12 August 1949, is applicable to the Palestinian and other Arab territories occupied by Israel since 1967, including Jerusalem, Gravely concerned and alarmed by the deteriorating situation in the Palestine territory occupied by Israel since 1967, including Jerusalem, Establishes a Commission consisting of three members of the Security Council, to be dispatched immediately to examine the situation relating to the policies and practices of Israel, the occupying Power, in the Palestinian territory, including Jerusalem, occupied by Israel since 1967; Requests the Commission to submit its report to the Security Council by 20 June 1990, containing recommendations on ways and means for ensuring the safety and protection of the Palestinian civilians under Israeli occupation;
Appendix (continued) U.N. Draft Resolutions Vetoed by U.S. Continued
Requests the Secretary-General to provide the Commission with the necessary facilities to enable it to carry out its mission; Decides to keep the situation in the occupied territories under constant and close scrutiny and to reconvene to review the situation in the light of the findings of the Commission.
S/1995/394 of 17 May 1995 (14 in favor, U.S. veto). Reaffirming its previous resolutions on the status of Jerusalem, including resolutions 252 (1968), 267 (1969), 271 (1969) 476 (1980), 478 (1980) and 672 (1990), Expresses concern over the recent declaration of Israeli expropriation order of 53 hectares of land in East Jerusalem, Reaffirming the applicability of the Fourth Geneva Convention of 12 August 1949, to all territories occupied by Israel since 1967, including Jerusalem, Aware of the negative impact of the above-mentioned expropriation on the Middle East peace process, which started in Madrid in October 1991 on the basis of the Security Council resolutions 242 (1967) and 338 (1973),
Aware also that in the Declaration of Principles of 13 September 1993 Israel and the Palestinian Liberation Organization agreed to postpone negotiations on final status issues, including Jerusalem, until the second stage of the peace process, Determined to provide the necessary backing to the Middle East peace process,
1.Confirms that the expropriation of land by Israel, the occupying Power, is East Jerusalem is invalid and in violation of relevant Security Council resolutions and provisions of the Fourth Geneva Convention of 12 August 1949; 2.Calls upon the Government of Israel to rescind the expropriation orders and to refrain from such action in the future. 3.Expressing its full support for the Middle East peace process and its achievements, including the Declaration of Principles of 13 September 1993 as well as the following implementation agreements; 4.Urges the parties to adhere to the provisions of the agreements reached and to follow up with the full implementation of those agreements; 5.Decides to remain seized of the matter.
U.N. Draft Resolutions Vetoed by U.S. Continued
S/1997/199 of 7 March 1997 (14 in favor, U.S. veto). Expressing deep concern at the decision of the Government of Israel to initiate new settlement activities in the Jabal Abu Ghneim area in East Jerusalem, Expressing concern about other recent measures that encourages or facilitate new settlement activities, Stressing that such settlements are illegal and a major obstacle to peace, Recalling its resolutions on Jerusalem and other relevant Security Council resolutions, Confirming that all legislative and administrative measures and actions taken by Israel which purport to alter the status of Jerusalem, including expropriation of land and properties thereon, are invalid and cannot change that status. Reaffirming its support for the Middle East Peace Process and all its achievements, including the recent Agreement on Hebron. Concerned about the difficulties facing the Middle East Peace Process, including the impact these have on the living conditions of the Palestinian people, and urging the parties to fulfill their obligations, including under the agreements already reached.
1.Calls upon the Israeli authorities to refrain from all actions or measures, including settlement activities, which alter the facts on the ground, pre-empting the final status negotiations, and have negative implications for the Middle East Peace Process; 2.Calls upon Israel, the occupying power, a abide scrupulously by its legal obligations and responsibilities under the Geneva Convention relative to the Protection of Civilian Persons in Time of War, of 12 August 1949, which is applicable to all the territories occupied by Israel since 1967. 3.Calls upon all parties to continue, in the interest of peace and security, their negotiations within the Middle East Peace Process on its agreed basis and the timely implementation of the agreements reached.
S/1997/241 of 21 March 1997 (13 in favor, 1 abstention, U.S. veto Recalling its relevant resolutions, in particular those concerning Jerusalem and Israeli settlements, Aware of General Assembly resolution 51/223 of 13 March 1997,
Appendix (continued) U.N. Draft Resolutions Vetoed by U.S. Continued
Stressing its support for the Middle East Peace Process and the need for the implementation of the agreements and commitments reached,
Demands that Israel immediately cease construction of the Jabal Abu Ghneim settlement in East Jerusalem, as well as all other Israeli settlement activities in the occupied territories; Requests that the Secretary-General to submit a report on the developments in this regard. S/2001/270 of 27 March 2001 (9 in favor, 4 abstentions [UK, France, Ireland, Norway], 1 did not vote [Ukraine], US veto). Reaffirming the need for a just, lasting and comprehensive peace in the Middle East based on Security Council resolution 242 (1967) of 22 November 1967, and 338 (1973) of 22 October 1973 and reaffirming also all it previous relevant resolutions, including its resolution 1322 (2000) of 7 October 2000, Expressing its grave concern at the continuation of the tragic and violent events that have taken place since September 2000, resulting in many deaths and injuries, mostly of Palestinians, Reiterating the need for protection of all civilians as expressed in its resolutions 1265 (1999) and 1296 (2000), Expressing its determination to contribute to ending the violence, protecting Palestinian civilians in the occupied territories and promoting dialogue between the Israeli and Palestinian sides, Expressing its support for the efforts of the Secretary-General and the United Nations Special Coordinator for the Middle East Peace Process,
Reiterating the need for Israel, the occupying Power, to abide scrupulously by its legal obligations and its responsibilities under the Fourth Geneva Convention relative to the Protection of Civilian Persons in Time of War of 12 August 1949, 1.Calls for the immediate cessation of all acts of violence, provocation and collective punishment. as well as the return to the positions and arrangements which existed prior to September 2000, 2.Calls upon the Governments of Israel and the Palestinian Authority to implement promptly and without preconditions the understanding reached at the Summit convened at Sharm El-Sheikh, Egypt, of 17 October 2000, 3.Urges a resumption of negotiations within the Middle East Peace Process on its agreed basis, taking into account the previous positive developments in the negotiations between two sides and calls on them to reach a final agreement on all issues, on the basis of their previous agreements, with the objective of implementing resolutions 242 (1967) and 338 (1973),
Appendix (continued) U.N. Draft Resolutions Vetoed by U.S. Continued
4.Expresses grave concern at recent settlement activities, in particular the recent decision to expand settlement at Jabal Abu Ghneim and calls for full cessation of settlement activities, 5.Calls for the parties to take the following immediate steps :
a. resumption of contacts at all levels on implementation of reciprocal commitments including in the field of security previously made by both sides. b. an end to the closures of occupied Palestinian territories to permit resumption of full normal activities of daily life. c. the transfer by Israel to the Palestinian Authority of all revenues due, in accordance with the Paris Protocol on Economic Relations of 29 April 1994. d. additional confidence building measures by both sides including unequivocal public statements in support of all commitments made at Sharm El-Sheikh and of this resolution. 1.Expresses full support for the work of the Fact Finding Committee established at Sharm El-Sheikh, calls upon all parties to cooperate fully with it, and looks forward to its report, 2. Appeals to the international donor community to extend, as rapidly and generously as possible, economic and financial assistance to the Palestinian people, and stresses in this regard the importance of the Committee; 3.Requests the Secretary-General to consult the parties on immediate and substantive steps to implement this resolution and expresses the readiness of the Council to act upon receipt of the report to set up appropriate mechanisms to protect Palestinian civilians, including through the establishment of a United Nations observer force. 4.Decides to remain actively seized of the matter. Ad Hoc Liaison
____________________________♦ ________________________________ __________________________________ __________________