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1948 and the Anglo–Saxim: on Western involvement in expulsion of the Palestinians

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On July 19, 1948, a young Yitzhak Rabin sent orders to Israeli units near the border of what would become the West Bank. Over the preceding week and a half–“The Ten Days,” as they are known in Israeli history books – the army of the new state of Israel had destroyed key communities in central Palestine. The Palestinian towns of Lydda and Ramla were no more. Israeli forces killed hundreds in both towns before emptying them of their inhabitants and annexing their land to Israel. Hundreds more died of thirst and exhaustion as the town’s inhabitants became refugees, forced to march into the West Bank in columns of tens of thousands. But Israeli orders were straightforward. “The inhabitants of Lydda must be expelled quickly without attention to age,” Rabin told troops (on July 12). And the natives, once expelled, were to be kept out.

So it was that almost 70 years ago–70 years before a besieged Gaza organized the “Great March of Return”; 70 years before participants in the march fell to Israeli sniper fire–a future prime minister of Israel ordered his soldiers to shoot at any Palestinians who tried to return to their homes.

A year of Deir Yassins

For people concerned about Palestine, the 70th anniversary of 1948 is an important time to reflect. The devastation produced too many grim landmarks to commemorate them all–hundreds of villages destroyed, hundreds of thousands of people driven from their lands. Yet some dates stand out. One is today. What happened in the Palestinian village of Deir Yassin on April 9, 1948, was the most infamous massacre of the war. Members of two right-wing Zionist militias, the Irgun and the Stern Gang, entered the village around dawn. They proceeded to carry out a massacre which they themselves then helped to publicize. Panic, they apparently judged, would be a useful force in clearing Palestine of its population.

Memories of Deir Yassin need to be kept alive. But it was no isolated incident. I want to connect it with Rabin’s live-fire order of July 19 for two reasons. First, because it’s past time to pop the bubble of liberal Zionist sensitivities. Yes, the legacy of 1948 is one of open brutality, as at Deir Yassin; but it’s also one of forgotten atrocities–of massacres denied, dismissed, covered up. Our memories of each need to intermingle. Palestinians were forced into Gaza, for example, mainly through the decisions of labor Zionist leaders. There’s no Zionist golden age to return to.

The second reason I mention Rabin’s order is to draw attention to some of the soldiers who received it. This brings us to a point where Jewish communities in the West are behind even Israel in grappling with the legacy of 1948. Among those operating under Rabin’s order was a unit in the Israeli army’s 82nd Tank Battalion known as the “English company.” It was one of many Zionist units deployed in 1948 Palestine with soldiers from the West–with veterans of the armies of the United States and Canada, of South Africa and Britain. These English-speaking members of the Zionist armed forces ranked among a larger number of “volunteers from abroad,” or Mahal (from the Hebrew Mitnadvay Hutz La’aretz). They were the Anglo-Saxim, Hebrew for Anglo-Saxons.

Under Rabin’s orders, the “English company” manned some of the first tanks acquired by the Israeli army. And these Anglo-Saxim were not alone. Western recruits filled specialist and command posts throughout the nascent Israel Defense Forces (IDF), and they virtually founded the Israeli Air Force (IAF). Over the past seven decades, the “diaspora” Zionism that saw these combatants recruited, dispatched, and paid from their home countries has risen to prominence within the Western Jewish mainstream.  This makes it the responsibility of the Jewish community as a whole–and Western civil society more generally, since many of the recruits were not Jewish–to grapple with their legacy.

It is a legacy of soldiers implicated in all aspects of the 1948 war.

This meant expelling Palestinians; also, the earth is round

If a discussion of this history can be forced, it will be difficult for liberal supporters of Israel to respond. The 21st century has not been kind to liberal Zionist myths.

For decades after 1948, liberal opinion in the West treated the Palestinian experience as Arab propaganda. Expulsions? No! The Palestinians left their homes and properties, so the propaganda went, because they were ordered to do so by Arab radio broadcasts, the better for Arab armies to invade the newborn Jewish state and sweep the Jews into the sea. What the myth-makers lacked in evidence they made up for in persistence. Last month, a 61-year old Californian man rocketed himself into the sky on a mission to prove, in 2018, that the earth is flat. He still comes off better than the peddlers of the Arab-broadcasts myth. As David Hirst wrote Zionist propagandists clung to this lie “with all the perversity of flat-earthers but none of their innocent eccentricity.

By involving themselves in the Zionist war effort, the Zionist movements of the Western countries, and the combatants they dispatched, involved themselves in the expulsion of Palestinians. This should be impossible to deny. Still, some try. So it may make sense to look at where liberal Zionist denial of reality stands before turning to the war record of the Anglo–Saxim.

One of liberal Zionism’s greatest surviving defenders is Anita Shapira. Now a professor emeritus at Tel Aviv University and the founder of the Yitzhak Rabin Center for Israel Studies, Shapira stands as Israel’s leading historian of Labor Zionism. An article of hers first published in autumn 2000–just as occupied Palestine rose up in the Second Intifada–illustrates the 21st century challenge of balancing liberal Zionism with a semblance of credibility.

The article is entitled “Hirbet Hizah: Between Remembrance and Forgetting.” In it, Shapira wrestles with a problem. Israeli documents tend to confirm what Palestinians have been saying all along: that Israeli forces expelled them in 1948. How, then, to prevent criticism of Israel from gaining momentum? Shapira brings in a new argument. She asks: isn’t this old news? Israeli democracy had a lively discussion of the morality of expelling Palestinians, she assures us. Israel can’t be faulted for denial.

“The expulsion has never been a secret.” So we learn from Shapira, a half-century of denial later. To make the case, she focuses on a Hebrew novel published in 1949, “Hirbet Hizah” (for those who are interested, it’s published in English with a different transliteration, “Khirbet Khizeh.”) She doesn’t cite its strongest passages. But she’s right that it contains honest reflection. The novelist, S. Yizhar, uses the name of a fictionalized Palestinian village to bring together realities of expulsion and settlement. Quoting the novel:

“Our very own Khirbet Khizeh. Questions of housing, and problems of absorption. And hooray, we’d house and absorb – and how! We’d open a cooperative store, establish a school, maybe even a synagogue. There would be   political parties here. They’d debate all sorts of things. They would plow fields, and sow, and reap, and do great things. Long live Hebrew Khizeh! Who, then, would ever imagine that once there had been some Khirbet Khizeh    that we emptied out and took for ourselves. We came, we shot, we burned; we blew up, expelled, drove off, and sent into exile.

What in God’s name were we doing in this place!”

In an odd twist, Shapira tries to build up early confessions as a belated defense. She argues that Israel’s critics have discovered nothing new: “a society, like Israel’s, that has included ‘The Story of Hirbet Hizah’ in its high school syllabi for several decades cannot be accused of trying to jettison and submerge the traumas of 1948.” On the other hand, old habits die hard.

And so come the denials. We can set aside, with exasperation or amusement, a half-hearted effort that Shapira makes to resuscitate the “Arab-leaders-told-Palestinians-to-leave” myth. More relevant for our purposes is where she looks to establish that expulsions didn’t take place across the country. She finds a noble officer in Moshe Carmel, the first head of the IDF’s Northern Command. Shapira argues that Carmel was well placed to fight for Israeli “purity of memory,” because at least “the northern area under his command did not pursue a policy of expelling Arabs.”

Which brings us back to the Anglo-Saxim.

“Anglo–Saxon knowhow on the northern front”

One of the U.S. army veterans who fought for the Zionists in Palestine was Lester Gorn. On the tenth anniversary of the 1948 war, he published a book about his and his comrades’ adventure entitled “The Anglo–Saxons: A Historical Novel of Israel’s War of Independence.” It’s historical fiction, a celebratory account. But it contains more than a few hints of actual history. As Gorn writes, the IDF deployed a significant number of Western recruits in northern Palestine, where they served under Moshe Carmel’s command. This is how Gorn puts it: “Anglo–Saxon knowhow was needed most on the northern front.”

It’s worth pausing a moment to consider the description of these recruits as “Anglo–Saxon.” It’s true that some of them weren’t Jews. In a news clipping tucked away in the Central Zionist Archives in Jerusalem, a British Christian who joined the Zionist forces, Tom Bowden, explains his attraction to the Zionists. “They were like Wild West settlers and I loved their history,” he said. But most of the recruits were Jewish. Yet on the new frontier, intra-Jewish racism flourished.

Ella Shohat notes the irony that the Ostjuden of Europe–the East European Jews, historically looked down upon by the communities of the West–created in Palestine their own “Ostjuden,” the Mizrahi or Eastern Jews. Anglo-Saxim could carry a sense of superiority towards them all. A telling anecdote from 1948 Palestine is recorded by the Canadian (and on this issue, orthodox Zionist) historian David Bercuson. In early May, two North American recruits arrived in Palestine ready to fight. One came from Montreal, the other from New York. As their plane touched down on coastal lands freshly cleansed of Palestinians, the recruits spotted a dark-skinned man. The Montrealer pointed his pistol at the “dark man” and “almost pulled the trigger,” Bercuson writes, before hesitating a moment. “The man turned out to be a Yemenite Jew.”

Palestinians were not always accorded such Western grace. A full summary of the recruits’ war record is for another place. There were a few thousand of them, mostly peppered throughout the Zionist forces as individuals or in small groups. In the IDF ground forces, there was one main exception to the rule of scattered deployment. It was on Moshe Carmel’s northern front.

By the autumn of 1948, about three hundred English-speaking World War II veterans were clustered together in the north in the IDF’s 7th Armored Brigade. The unit was instrumental in conquering the Upper Galilee. Nafez Nazzal, the leading historian of the Nakba in the Galilee, dubbed the 7th “the Anglo–Saxon Brigade” in “The Palestinian Exodus from Galilee, 1948.” And Gorn seems to be describing it when he writes of an “Anglo–Saxon” unit, “the best-clothed, best-equipped unit in Israel.” Paid by Zionist movements in their home countries, some of the soldiers also helped themselves to Palestinian property. The commander of the Brigade, Ben Dunkelman, is a case in point. He was the son of the founder of Ontario retail giant Tip Top Tailors and a veteran of the Queen’s Own Rifles of Canada. He boasts in his memoirs that cattle looted from Palestinian villagers provided hundreds of trays of beef for his wedding.

Meanwhile, Palestinian villagers poured into Lebanon in their tens of thousands. For a front commander who “did not pursue a policy of expelling Arabs,” Moshe Carmel sure was suggestive. This was an order he sent to Dunkelman on October 31, 1948: “The inhabitants should be assisted to leave the conquered areas.” Dunkelman’s troops were already rendering such assistance.

Israeli archives and Palestinian oral history combine to sketch a grisly picture. One of the villages that the 7th Brigade occupied was Jish. An IDF intelligence officer writes of “150–200” Palestinians killed there, “including a number of civilians.” Another was Safsaf. A woman from the village, Umm Shahadah al-Salih, told Nazzal what happened when village defenses fell:

“As we lined up, a few Jewish soldiers ordered four girls to accompany them to carry water for the soldiers. Instead,   they took them to our empty houses and raped them. About 70 of our men were blindfolded and shot to death, one after the other, in front of us. The soldiers took their bodies and threw them on the cement covering of the village’s spring and dumped sand on them.”

Villagers whose militia defenses faltered did not always stick around to meet these troops. “What happened at Safsaf and Jish no doubt reached the villagers of Ras al Ahmar, ‘Alma, Deishum and al Malikiya hours before the Seventh Brigade’s columns,” writes Israel’s Benny Morris – who, for all his faults, recorded most of the orders I cite above (see in particular “The Birth of the Palestinian Refugee Problem Revisited”). “These villages, apart from ‘Alma, seem to have been completely or largely empty when the IDF arrived.”

The first U.S. ambassador to Israel would soon write of his hosts’ luck in securing “such a ‘miraculous’ clearing of the land” (from James McDonald’s “My Mission in Israel, 1948–1951”). Zionists from the West played their part in securing this “miracle.”

From Deir Yassin to Land Day, 2018

In the years after 1948, Israeli forces killed thousands of returning Palestinians. The refugees tried to come back from the West Bank, from Gaza, from Lebanon, from the range of camps across Israel’s new frontiers. Yes, there were the fedayeen, determined to strike at those they felt had uprooted their society. But the “vast majority” (again, quoting Morris) came for economic reasons, across an oppressive frontier cutting them off from their lands, their property, their relatives.

This is more than a history to commemorate. As Lila Abu-Lughod and Ahmad Sa’di put it in their co-edited book “Nakba,” “the Nakba is not over yet.” The wounds in Gaza are fresh. But as we mark another decade since the catastrophe, we should remember that the Land Day shootings of 2018, and their repetition last Friday, are the continuation of an old crime. The bravery it takes for people to challenge this crime by marching against Israeli snipers is extraordinary, and it demands all of our respect. It also stands as a call to action on this grim anniversary.

Supporters of Israel in the West–including far too many Jewish communities–are meanwhile preparing to celebrate seventy years since Israel’s establishment. It’s the responsibility of people of conscience to bring to the surface just what these people are celebrating. For those of us in the West, the history may not be flattering. But it’s past time to force a reckoning with it.

About Dan Freeman-Maloy

Dan Freeman-Maloy is an activist and writer based in Montreal. He holds a PhD from the University of Exeter, completed through its European Centre for Palestine Studies, and can be contacted at [email protected]

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34 Responses

  1. Ossinev
    April 9, 2018, 2:22 pm

    There appears to be a problem with the number of “indigenuous” Foreign !! Jews doing the Aliyah shuffle and record numbers leaving Zioland so drastic situations call for drastic measure. Perhaps offering prospective Aliyahites lets say 10 x free live weekend shooting practice sessions on the Gaza border as part of their standard immigration package would do the trick. For those who are considering reverse Aliyah perhaps 20 x free live weekend shooting practice sessions might swing it ? It really does sound like great fun – hey and you get to video it and show to your family and friends who will also have a hoot.
    https://www.timesofisrael.com/idf-probes-video-of-troops-cheering-as-sniper-shoots-palestinian-near-gaza-fence/

  2. Annie Robbins
    April 9, 2018, 6:07 pm

    thank you Dan Freeman-Maloy, fascinating read.

  3. echinococcus
    April 9, 2018, 10:23 pm

    Not a surprise, being that Zionism has always been the poodle of Western colonialism. And it’s going on with the massive participation of the US providing all the money, weaponry and thousands of soldiers and colonists, not to mention other support.
    We are not just “accomplices” –the US is a first-person participant in all the occupation and genocide.

  4. JLewisDickerson
    April 10, 2018, 12:59 am

    RE: “Members of two right-wing Zionist militias, the Irgun and the Stern Gang, entered the village around dawn. They proceeded to carry out a massacre which they themselves then helped to publicize. Panic, they apparently judged, would be a useful force in clearing Palestine of its population.” ~ Dan Freeman-Maloy

    MY COMMENT: Much like Sharon may have thought a good massacre like Sabra and Shatila would cause the Palestinian refugees in Lebanon to panic and flee to Syria (later to be forced into Jordan).

    ■ “The War of Lies”, by Uri Avnery | gush-shalom.org | September 06, 2012 |

    [EXCERPTS] Thirty Years ago this week, the Israeli army crossed into Lebanon and started the most stupid war in Israel’s history. It lasted for 18 years. About 1500 Israeli soldiers and untold numbers of Lebanese and Palestinians were killed.
    Almost all wars are based on lies. Lies are considered legitimate instruments of war. Lebanon War I (as it was later called) was a glorious example.
    From beginning to end (if it has ended yet) it was a war of deceit and deception, falsehoods and fabrications.
    THE LIES started with the official name: “Operation Peace in Galilee”.
    If one asks Israelis now, 99.99% of them will say with all sincerity: “We had no choice. They launched katyushas at the Galilee from Lebanon every day. We had to stop them.” TV anchormen and anchorwomen, as well as former cabinet ministers have been repeating this throughout the week. Quite sincerely. Even people who were already adults at the time.
    The simple fact is that for 11 months before the war, not a single shot was fired across the Israeli-Lebanese border. A cease-fire was in force and the Palestinians on the other side of the border kept it scrupulously. To everybody’s surprise, Yasser Arafat succeeded in imposing it on all the radical Palestinian factions, too.
    At the end of May, Defense Minister Ariel Sharon met with Secretary of State Alexander Haig in Washington DC. He asked for American agreement to invade Lebanon. Haig said that the US could not allow it, unless there were a clear and internationally recognized provocation.
    And lo and behold, the provocation was provided at once. Abu Nidal, the anti-Arafat and anti-PLO master terrorist, sent his own cousin to assassinate the Israeli ambassador in London, who was grievously wounded.
    In retaliation, Israel bombed Beirut and the Palestinians fired back, as expected. The Prime Minister, Menachem Begin, allowed Sharon to invade Lebanese territory up to 40 km, “to put the Galilee settlements out of reach of the katyushas.”
    When one of the intelligence chiefs told Begin at the cabinet meeting that Abu Nidal’s organization was not a member of the PLO, Begin famously answered: “They are all PLO”.
    General Matti Peled, my political associate at the time, firmly believed that Abu Nidal had acted as an agent of Sharon. So do all the Palestinians I know.
    The lie “they shot at us every day” has taken such a hold on the public mind that it is nowadays useless to dispute it. It is an illuminating example of how a myth can take possession of the public mind, including even of people who had seen with their own eyes that the opposite was true.
    NINE MONTHS before the war, Sharon told me about his plan for a New Middle East. . .
    . . . His design for the region, as told me then (and which I published nine months before the war), was:

    • To attack Lebanon and install a Christian dictator who would serve Israel,
    • Drive the Syrians out of Lebanon,
    Drive the Palestinians out of Lebanon into Syria, from where they would then be pushed by the Syrians into Jordan.
    • Get the Palestinians to carry out a revolution in Jordan, kick out King Hussein and turn Jordan into a Palestinian state,
    • Set up a functional arrangement under which the Palestinian state (in Jordan) would share power in the West Bank with Israel. Being a single-minded operator, Sharon convinced Begin to start the war, telling him that the sole aim was to push the PLO 40 km back. . .

    ENTIRE ARTICLE – http://zope.gush-shalom.org/home/en/channels/avnery/1339170910/

  5. Jackdaw
    April 10, 2018, 1:54 am

    Being a war refugee is not the same thing as being expelled from your home.

    Many civilians will flee a battle zone of their own volition. That’s happening all over the world today, and has happened all over the world since time immemorial.
    It is true that many, but not most, Palestinans were expelled at the point of a Jewish gun. Many, not most.

    From a Palestinian war refugee’s point of view, the worst thing that befell them, was not having fled a battle zone , but rather, not being allowed to return home, after having fled.

    Dan Freeman-Maloy, professional activist, I ask you this. ‘Why no mention of the 500,000 Jews who fled, or were expelled, from their homes in the Arab States?

    Dan Freeman-Maloy, professional activist. I ask one final question.
    What are you doing to help the many hundreds of thousands of today’s war refugees in Syria, Iraq, Yemen and Africa?

    Are you so lazy and short-sighted that you only pick the low hanging fruit?
    Get out of the library and help someone for real.

    • Misterioso
      April 10, 2018, 3:40 pm

      @Jackdaw

      To be brief:

      To quote John H. Davis, who served as Commission-General of UNRWA from 1947-late 1948: “An exhaustive examination of the minutes, resolutions, and press releases of the Arab League, of the files of leading Arabic newspapers, of day-to-day monitoring of broadcasts from Arab capitals and secret Arab radio stations, failed to reveal a single reference, direct or indirect, to an order given to the Arabs of Palestine to leave. All the evidence is to the contrary; that the Arab authorities continuously exhorted the Palestinian Arabs not to leave the country…. Panic and bewilderment played decisive parts in the flight. But the extent to which the refugees were savagely driven out by the Israelis as part of a deliberate master-plan has been insufficiently recognized.” (John H. Davis, The Evasive Peace, London: Murray, 1968)

      In 2004, when asked by Ha’aretz journalist, Ari Shavit, what new information his just completed revised version of The Birth of the Palestinian Problem 1947-1949 would provide, Israeli historian Benny Morris replied: “It is based on many documents that were not available to me when I wrote the original book, most of them from the Israel Defense Forces Archives. What the new material shows is that there were far more Israeli acts of massacre than I had previously thought. To my surprise, there were also many cases of rape. In the months of April-May 1948, units of the Haganah were given operational orders that stated explicitly that they were to uproot the villagers, expel them and destroy the villages themselves.” (Ha’aretz, January 9, 2004)

      Re: “‘Why no mention of the 500,000 Jews who fled, or were expelled, from their homes in the Arab States?”

      Reality:
      To quote Yehouda Shenhav, of Iraqi Jewish heritage and professor of sociology and anthropology at Tel Aviv University: “Any reasonable person, Zionist or non-Zionist, must acknowledge that the analogy drawn between Palestinians and Mizrahi [Arab] Jews is unfounded. Palestinian refugees did not want to leave Palestine….Those who left did not do so of their own volition. In contrast, Jews from Arab lands came to this country under the initiative of the State of Israel and Jewish organizations.” (Haaretz, 8 October 2004.)
      Also:

      Historian, Avi Shlaim, born into an affluent and influential family in Baghdad: “We are not refugees, nobody expelled us from Iraq, nobody told us that we were unwanted. But we are the victims of the Israeli-Arab conflict.” (Haaretz, August 11, 2005)

      Yisrael Yeshayahu, speaker of the Knesset: “We are not refugees…. We had messianic aspirations.”

      Shlomo Hillel, former minister and speaker of the Knesset: “I don’t regard the departure of Jews from Arab lands as that of refugees. They came here because they wanted to, as Zionists.”

      During a Knesset hearing into the matter, Ran Cohen, member of the Knesset: “I am not a refugee….I came at the behest of Zionism, due to the pull that this land exerts, and due to the idea of redemption. Nobody is going to define me as a refugee.” (Ha’aretz, October 8, 2004)

      It should not be forgotten that after having its bid for UN membership rejected twice, Israel signed the 1949 Lausanne Peace Conference Protocol and declared before the UN General Assembly that it would comply with UN Resolution 194, which, based on the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (binding on all UN members), calls for the repatriation of and/or compensation for the then near 800,000 Palestinian refugees who as determined by Walter Eytan, then Director General of the Israeli Foreign Ministry, were dispossessed and expelled by Jewish forces and the IDF before and during the 1948 war (including 400,000 between late 1947 and 15 May 1948), as a precondition for gaining UN admittance (see UNGA Resolution 273, 11 May 1949.) Israel is the only country admitted to the UN subject to a precondition. It has since refused to comply with its pledge and should have long since had its UN membership cancelled or suspended.

      The bottom line is that while well over one million Palestinians were brutally expelled from their homeland by 1967 at the hands Jewish militias and the IDF, they played no role whatsoever in the emigration of or any ill treatment and or loss of assets that Jews of Arab origin may have experienced in their former homelands. In short, apples and oranges.

      As for your question asked of Dan Freeman-Maloy regarding today’s war refugees in Syria, Iraq, Yemen and Africa, it’s pure hasbara, i.e., “whataboutery,” diversion, change the subject. I remind you that the subject under discussion is “1948 and the Anglo–Saxim: on Western involvement in expulsion of the Palestinians.”

      • Jackdaw
        April 10, 2018, 4:33 pm

        It’s ‘whataboutery’ when you have a roof over your head and a full belly.

        Sod off. You disgust me.

      • Misterioso
        April 10, 2018, 7:20 pm

        @Jackdaw

        “Sod off. You disgust me.”

        We get it, “the truth hurts.”

        As the old adage goes, “if you can’t stand the heat, get out of the kitchen.”

      • Annie Robbins
        April 10, 2018, 7:33 pm

        when jack pulls the ‘low hanging fruit*’ /’roof over your head’ lines you gotta start tip toeing real careful like around his sensitive feelings.

        and the full belly thing… okay!

        *as if israel doesn’t get cadillac treatment from our gov. triple yawn, better go grab my hankie.

      • Mooser
        April 10, 2018, 7:35 pm

        “It’s ‘whataboutery’ when you have a roof over your head and a full belly.”

        But not for you, “Jackdaw”! All your comments are ‘strictly from hunger’.

      • oldgeezer
        April 10, 2018, 8:58 pm

        @jockstrap

        The croc called and wants it’s tears back.

        Put the fakery aside jock. Zionists have never shown any concern for anyone but themselves. Zionists and Israel are so concerned about those refugees they aid and abet Al Nusra/Qaeda and are buddies with the Sauds.

      • RoHa
        April 10, 2018, 11:10 pm

        “as if israel doesn’t get cadillac treatment from our gov.”

        Careful, Annie. Mooser has strong feelings about making connections between Cadillacs and Jews.

      • Jackdaw
        April 11, 2018, 9:59 am

        “Historian, Avi Shlaim, born into an affluent and influential family in Baghdad: ”

        The Jews of Iraq suffered a Nazi inspired pogrom in 1941 and hundreds were murdered, beaten and raped. The Jews of Iraq were bombed, during their flight from Iraq, by Iraqi nationalists.

        And here’s where your argument starts to stink; Jews fled Libya, Morocco, Tunisia and Egypt, not just Iraq. There were pogroms in Egypt and Libya and concentration camps in Morocco and Algeria.

        You are disgusting in your lies.
        Distgusting.

      • Jackdaw
        April 11, 2018, 10:08 am

        @moosebreath

        “Green Card and chump discard”.

      • Mooser
        April 11, 2018, 5:57 pm

        “Jackdaw”, it’s pretty plain. If you could talk to Israelis and not end up in cursing spitting arguments, you wouldn’t be here.

      • JosephA
        April 12, 2018, 1:19 am

        In which Misterioso drops the mic. Jackass has nothing to say of meaning after such a verbal lashing. Thank you, Misterioso, for having such an honest grasp of history, as well as for having patience with such racist (zionist) trolls.

    • REDPILLED
      April 10, 2018, 10:42 pm

      Read The Ethnic Cleansing of Palestine by Ilan Pappe.

      • Naftush
        April 17, 2018, 2:55 am

        That must be the same Ilan Pappe who endorses massacre accounts on the “evidence” that those giving the accounts feel as though they were massacred (see under: Tantura). And who airbrushes out the reality of total war in 1947-1948 in order to leave ethnic cleansing as the default explanation for what happened.

    • Mooser
      April 11, 2018, 6:03 pm

      Being a war refugee is not the same thing as being expelled from your home.”

      ROTFLMSJAO!! You mean expelled by the Romans?

  6. Marnie
    April 10, 2018, 7:07 am

    This blows the whole lid off so-called ‘liberal zionism’.

    “As we lined up, a few Jewish soldiers ordered four girls to accompany them to carry water for the soldiers. Instead, they took them to our empty houses and raped them. About 70 of our men were blindfolded and shot to death, one after the other, in front of us. The soldiers took their bodies and threw them on the cement covering of the village’s spring and dumped sand on them.”

    Israel, a blight among the nations. The IDF are nothing but a band of miscreants with a license to murder, rape and pillage; the hallmark of every democracy!

  7. Jackdaw
    April 11, 2018, 9:39 am

    Dr. Engel, who accompanied Jacques de Reynier of the Red Cross, reported that he “did not see any signs of defilement, mutilation, or rape.” Daniel Spicehandler, a member of a Haganah unit sent to assist the IZL, said later: “So far as I saw, there was no rape or looting.” An Arab survivor of the Deir Yassin battle, Muhammad Arif Sammour, told author Eric Silver emphatically that there were no sexual attacks. Silver wrote: “Sammour, who has no reason to minimize the atrocities, is convinced that there were no sexual assault: ‘I didn’t hear or see anything of rape or attacks on pregnant women. None of the other survivors ever talked to me about that kind of thing. If anybody told you that, I don’t believe it.’” Sammour’s statement is corroborated by the testimony of two Jewish doctors physicians, Drs. Z. Avigdori and A. Droyan. At the request of the Jewish Agency, Avigdori and Droyan were sent by the Histadrut Medical Committee [the Labor Zionist-affiliated trade union], in Jerusalem, to Deir Yassin on Monday, April 12. They examined the bodies and reported that “all the bodies were clothed, the limbs were intact, and no sign of mutilation was visible on them.”

    • lonely rico
      April 13, 2018, 5:13 pm

      > Jackdaw

      They examined the bodies and reported that “all the bodies were clothed, the limbs were intact, and no sign of mutilation was visible on them.”

      Gee. That makes it all OK then.

      Your Zionist thugs didn’t rape or mutilate their victims.
      They just murdered them straight up.

      “The most moral army in the world” establishing its bona fides.

  8. Stephen Shenfield
    April 11, 2018, 11:58 am

    This intersects with my essay on this site “Perpetrators of the Nakba.”

    It is important to point out not only that Diet Yassin was no isolated incident but also that massacres were perpetrated not only by the Stern Gang and Lehi but also by the Haganah, as at Tantura. This exposes the “liberal Zionist” myth that contrasts the barbarity of the Revisionist militias with the supposedly ethical record of the “mainstream” Zionist armed forces (Haganah and Palmach). Many people have fallen for this trick, including Einstein.

    • Jackdaw
      April 11, 2018, 2:35 pm

      Unproven massacre at Tantura. Maybe atrocities after armed villagers broke a surrender agreement and open fire on Alexandroni soldiers.

      What about Hadassah hospital convoy massacre? Gush Etzion massacre?

      Dead Jews count. Right?

      Stephen?

      • Annie Robbins
        April 11, 2018, 5:10 pm

        there were witnesses at Tantura. you can’t erase it. and the ambush of the hospital convoy, that happened 4 days after the slaughter of civilians at deir yassin.

      • Mooser
        April 11, 2018, 5:51 pm

        “Dead Jews count. Right?”

        How many times? Thank God nobody keeps an account of how many times and for what each one counts.

      • Stephen Shenfield
        May 16, 2018, 4:39 pm

        Zionism is to blame not only for the massacres of Palestinians but also for the massacres of Jews in Palestine and other Arab countries. In Palestine before the rise of Zionism Jews, Christians and Moslems lived together in peace, so there is no reason to suppose that any massacres would have occurred there in the absence of Zionism. In some other Arab countries there had been pogroms before the rise of Zionism, e.g. Damascus 1840. The rise of Zionism was nonetheless a significant exacerbating factor, so whether there would have been a program in Baghdad during WW2, for instance, in the absence of Zionism is a matter of judgment. So Zionism was wholly responsible for the uprooting of Palestinians and also responsible, at least in large measure, for the uprooting of Jews from other Arab countries. So the two phenomena do not “balance” one another out.

    • Naftush
      April 17, 2018, 2:58 am

      Tantura? You cannot convict a jaywalker on the strength of the “evidence” given about Tantura decades after whatever fact had been there. Nor can you legitimately assess Deir Yassin and really all the rest if you’ve airbrushed out the reality of total war at the time, as seems to be de rigueur here.

      • Stephen Shenfield
        May 16, 2018, 4:00 pm

        Naftash: Do you accept the testimony of Palestinian witnesses as evidence?

      • Stephen Shenfield
        May 16, 2018, 4:20 pm

        There were two distinct periods in the war. First, the civil war between Zionists and Palestinians that began with the British withdrawal. At this stage fighting was sporadic and did not occur in all localities — not total war. Second, a period of more intensive warfare following the declaration of Israel’s independence, with the entry of armies from neighboring Arab states. The key point is that about half of the ethnic cleansing took place in the earlier period of less than total war and therefore cannot be attributed to a situation of total war. This follows from the unidirectional nature of time; what happens later cannot explain what happens earlier.

      • RoHa
        May 16, 2018, 7:11 pm

        “This follows from the unidirectional nature of time; what happens later cannot explain what happens earlier.”

        We really should fix that problem. A lot of pet ideas in both science and history founder on the timing detail. Things would be much easier if we could make it go away.

  9. Jackdaw
    April 11, 2018, 5:23 pm

    “that happened 4 days after the slaughter of civilians at deir yassin.”

    You have no conception what you’ve just said. None whatsoever .

    You are hollow.

    • Annie Robbins
      April 11, 2018, 5:35 pm

      au contraire, i have a concept of what i wrote. there was no “maybe” there. there was no hypothetical justification like your hollow words.

  10. Peter Unterweger
    April 12, 2018, 10:29 pm

    Thanks for this excellent article. For me the first paragraph leaves open the question of just what was the live-fire order Rabin issued on July 19. According to the same paragraph the destruction of the Palestinian communities had already taken place in the 10 preceding days, and Rabin is quoted as having urged the expulsion of the Palestinians from Lydda on July 12, i.e. a week earlier. I would greatly appreciate some clarification.

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