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Understanding the Partition plan

Middle East

A previous article in this series discussed the evolution of the idea of a Jewish National Home in Palestine. As expressed in the Zionists’ Carlsbad Resolution and implemented in the British-administered Mandate for Palestine, Palestine was to become the national home of the Jews while remaining the national home of the existing, mostly Arab, population:

“a common home the upbuilding of which will assure to each of these peoples an undisturbed national development” with “perfect equality in all matters between Jew and Arab”.

To cut a long story short: this plan did not work, and the British Government decided in 1947 that it wanted to end the Mandate, asking the United Nations to make recommendations concerning the future government of Palestine. The UN produced a plan to partition Palestine into a Jewish State and an Arab State.

This article discusses the origins of the idea of partition, and the details of the UN partition plan. It concludes that such a two-state solution is ultimately unworkable, and that a final solution will involve some form of federal structure.

British Statement on the end of the Mandate

In a little-known document [PDF, see also my HTML version], the British Government gave a summary of events during the Mandate, explaining why they had been unable to achieve all of its goals, and why they decided to hand over responsibility to the UN. It also explains how the idea of partition arose, and why the British Government rejected it. The following extracts cover the main points of the document. For greater clarity I have added sub-headings and additional paragraph breaks, and also emphasized some key phrases.

Three tasks. In accepting the obligations of the Mandate, His Majesty’s Government undertook three major tasks.
(i) The first of these was to promote the well-being and development of the people of Palestine.
(ii) The second was to facilitate the establishment in Palestine of a national home for the Jewish people and Jewish immigration into that country, while ensuring that the rights and position of other sections of the population were not prejudiced.
(iii) The third was to prepare the people of Palestine for self-government.

The document goes on to claim a great deal of success in the first two objectives, but failure in developing self-governing institutions, “owing to the mutual hostility of Arabs and Jews.”

Legislative Council. In 1922 an Order-in-Council was issued providing for the creation of a Legislative Council, to consist of the High Commissioner, 10 official members and 12 elected members, of whom 8 were to be Moslems, 2 Christians, and 2 Jews.

The Arabs refused to take part in any form of government involving acceptance of the Jewish national home and boycotted the elections held in 1923, thus making it impossible to set up the Legislative Council. The Government of Palestine has ever since been carried on by the High Commissioner with the aid of a nominated Advisory Council of officials.

Increase in Jewish immigration. The next seven years saw a sharp increase in the number of Jews entering Palestine. In 1928 there had been a net Jewish immigration of only 10 persons, but between 1930 and 1936 over 182,000 entered the country.

Although the impetus given to the economic development of Palestine by these immigrants and the capital they brought, conferred certain benefits on the Arab community also, the growth in the Jewish population was bitterly resented by the Arabs. In 1933 this resentment found expression in riots directed not against the Jews but against the Government of Palestine, who were accused of tilting the balance against the Arabs in their administration of the Mandate.

Arab rebellion. By far the most serious outbreak of Arab violence, however, was the rebellion of 1936-39. This took various forms, rioting, sabotage, destruction of property, terrorism and guerrilla warfare, and was directed both against Jews and against the Government of Palestine. In all some 4,000 people were killed and two divisions of British troops, together with several squadrons of the R.A.F., had to be employed to suppress the rising, a task not completed until the end of 1939.

Peel Commission. The violence and extent of the rebellion were such that His Majesty’s Government appointed a Royal Commission headed by Lord Peel, to enquire into the underlying causes of the disturbances and into the operation of the Mandate, and to make recommendations for the removal of any legitimate grievances felt by Jews or Arabs.

The Commission reported in 1937 that the underlying causes were the same as those which had brought about earlier disturbances of 1920, 1921, 1929, and 1933, namely, the desire of the Arabs for national independence and their hatred and fear of the establishment of the Jewish national home.

They pointed out that, although both Arabs and Jews were fit to govern themselves, yet, associated as they were under the Mandate, self-government was impracticable for both since neither would accept a Government in which the other had a majority.

They concluded that the obligations imposed upon His Majesty’s Government by the terms of the Mandate were mutually irreconcilable and that it was impossible both to concede the Arab claim to self-government and to secure the establishment of the Jewish national home. They accordingly recommended that the Mandate should be terminated and Palestine divided between the Jews and Arabs.

Neither the scheme suggested by the Peel Commission, nor the more detailed proposals for partition of the Woodhead Commission which followed them, proved acceptable to either Arabs or Jews. His Majesty’s Government, who had originally accepted the principle of partition and had been authorized by the League of Nations to investigate its practicability, could therefore only conclude that:- “The political, administrative and financial difficulties involved in the proposal to create independent Arab and Jewish States inside Palestine are so great that this solution of the problem is impracticable.”

MacDonald White Paper. In 1939 His Majesty’s Government issued a White Paper defining their policy and explaining that it was not their intention to convert Palestine into a Jewish State or into an Arab State, but that their purpose was:- “The establishment within 10 years of an independent Palestine State….in which Arabs and Jews share in government in such a way as to ensure that the essential interests of each community are safeguarded.”

The White Paper said that “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.”

It pointed out that adoption of the first policy would mean rule by force, contravene the obligations imposed on them by the League of Nations and make impossible the creation of that mutual tolerance and goodwill between Arabs and Jews essential to the security and progress of the Jewish National Home itself. They accordingly decided that, after the admission of not more than 75,000 additional immigrants during the five years beginning in April 1939, no further Jewish immigration would be permitted, unless the Arabs of Palestine were prepared to acquiesce in it.

The Arabs were critical of many of the provisions in the White Paper but it seemed probable that they would eventually acquiesce in their application. The Jews, on the other hand, were bitterly opposed to it and its publication was immediately followed by an outburst of Jewish violence which continued until the beginning of the war.

Illegal Jewish immigration. 1939 also saw the beginning of organized attempts by large numbers of Jews to enter Palestine in excess of the permitted quota. These attempts have continued ever since, and, by exacerbating Arab resentment, have greatly increased the difficulty of maintaining law and order in Palestine. In the summer of 1946 the influx of Jewish illegal immigrants exceeded the capacity of the camps in Palestine where, since the war, they had been detained pending their release under the legal quota, and the majority of those reaching Palestine waters subsequently have been sent to Cyprus for the same purpose.

Jewish terrorism. The control of illegal immigration not only burdened still further the British forces in Palestine and the Royal Navy, but was also the principal cause of the steady increase in Jewish terrorist activities. These had ceased at the beginning of the war, in whose prosecution both Jews and Arabs had loyally cooperated, but broke out again in 1942. From that year until the end of the war Jewish extremists carried out a number of political murders, robberies and acts of sabotage, while Haganah (an illegal military force controlled by the Jewish Agency) organized the theft of arms and ammunition from the British forces in the Middle East.

Once Germany had been defeated, these activities, previously sporadic and supported by only a minority of the Jewish community, increased in scale and intensity as the efforts of terrorist gangs were supplemented by those of Haganah and assisted by members of the Jewish Agency. Communications were attacked throughout the country; Government buildings, military trains and places of entertainment frequented by Britons were blown up; and numbers of Britons, Arabs and moderate Jews were kidnapped or murdered. This wholesale terrorism had continued ever since.

Anglo-American Committee of Enquiry. In August 1945 His Majesty’s Government enlisted the cooperation of the United States Government in the appointment of an Anglo-American Committee of Enquiry to investigate the problem of Palestine and of Jewish refugees in Europe and to make recommendation accordingly. This Committee, in a report presented in April 1946, explicitly rejected partition as a solution and proposed instead that the Mandate should be continued pending the execution of a UN Trusteeship agreement.

This was rejected by both Arabs and Jews, who had each put forward proposals of their own; the Arabs, for an independent Palestine with a permanent Arab majority; the Jews, for a Jewish Palestine or, if Palestine could not yet be granted independence, for unrestricted Jewish immigration and settlement throughout Palestine, or, as a last resort, for a viable Jewish State in an adequate area of Palestine. Neither Arabs nor Jews would consider the others’ proposals.

Referral to the United Nations. After the failure of these discussions, His Majesty’s Government decided that the only course now open to them was to submit the problem to the judgment of the United Nations, asking that body to recommend a solution.

The reasons for this decision were explained by His Majesty’s Principal Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs in a speech to the House of Commons on 18th February, 1947, in which he said:-
“His Majesty’s Government have been faced with an irreconcilable conflict of principles. There are in Palestine about 1,200,000 Arabs and 600,000 Jews. For the Jews the essential point of principle is the creation of a sovereign Jewish State. For the Arabs, the essential point of principle is to resist to the last establishment of Jewish sovereignty in any part of Palestine.

“The discussions of the last month have quite clearly shown that there is no prospect of resolving this conflict by any settlement negotiated between the parties. But if the conflict has to be resolved by an arbitrary decision, that is not a decision which His Majesty’s Government are empowered, as Mandatory, to take. His Majesty’s Government have of themselves no power, under the terms of the Mandate, to award the country either to the Arabs or to the Jews, or even to partition it between them.”

UN Special Committee on Palestine

In response to the British Government’s letter of 2 April 1947 asking the UN to consider the “future government of Palestine”, the General Assembly set up the Special Committee on Palestine (UNSCOP), with members from Australia, Canada, Czechoslovakia, Guatemala, India, Iran, Netherlands, Peru, Sweden, Uruguay and Yugoslavia. The Committee reported on 3 September 1947.

They rejected what they called the two “extreme” solutions proposed by the two parties: that Palestine should achieve independence as a Jewish State or as an Arab state. They also rejected as “unworkable” a cantonal or a bi-national structure.

The cantonal structure involved dividing the country into local areas of administration each with a substantial majority of either Jews or Arabs, and giving them a great deal of local autonomy. The country as a whole would remain under British trusteeship for five years, with the intention that a constitutional assembly be elected towards the end of the period, and the country brought to independence.

It is not entirely clear what they meant by a bi-national structure, but is probably what they describe elsewhere as a plan for provincial autonomy. Two provinces would be set up, the Jewish one to include all the areas of Jewish settlement. Jerusalem, including Bethlehem, and the Negev would remain under British control. This could develop over time either towards an independent federal State or towards partition with the Arab and Jewish provinces becoming independent States whose boundaries could not be modified except by mutual consent.

They set up working parties to consider two possible solutions, one based on partition, the other on federation.

The Plan of Partition with Economic Union was supported by a majority of the Committee, (Canada, Czechoslovakia, Guatemala, the Netherlands, Peru, Sweden and Uruguay.) It divided Palestine into three entities: a Jewish State, an Arab State, and the City of Jerusalem which was to be under international trusteeship and not part of either State. The economic unity of Palestine would be preserved by a treaty between the three entities. As this plan was eventually the basis of the solution recommended by the General Assembly, it will be discussed in detail below.

The Federal State Plan was supported by a minority of members of the Committee (India, Iran, and Yugoslavia). The federal State would comprise an Arab state and a Jewish state. Each state consisted of two non-contiguous portions (see map). There would be a federal government, and individual state governments covering local affairs. The legislature of the federal State would have two chambers: one elected by proportional representation of all residents, and the other based on equal representation of Arabs and Jews. If the two chambers disagreed on any matter, an arbitration mechanism would be invoked. The states could institute such representative forms of government as they deemed desirable, subject to the provisions of the federal constitution.


Resolution 181.

Having referred UNSCOP’s report to an Ad hoc Committee of all Member states, the General Assembly eventually passed Resolution 181 on November 29, 1947, recommending a modified version of the Plan of Partition with Economic Union:

The General Assembly,

Having received and examined the report of the Special Committee, including a number of unanimous recommendations and a plan of partition with economic union approved by the majority of the Special Committee,

Considers that the present situation in Palestine is one which is likely to impair the general welfare and friendly relations among nations;

Takes note of the declaration by the mandatory Power that it plans to complete its evacuation of Palestine by l August 1948;

Recommends to the United Kingdom, as the mandatory Power for Palestine, and to all other Members of the United Nations the adoption and implementation, with regard to the future Government of Palestine, of the Plan of Partition with Economic Union set out below.

Requests that

(a) The Security Council take the necessary measures as provided for in the plan for its implementation;

(b) The Security Council consider, if circumstances during the transitional period require such consideration, whether the situation in Palestine constitutes a threat to the peace. If it decides that such a threat exists, and in order to maintain international peace and security, the Security Council should supplement the authorization of the General Assembly by taking measures, under Articles 39 and 41 of the Charter, to empower the United Nations Commission, as provided in this resolution, to exercise in Palestine the functions which are assigned to it by this resolution;

(c) The Security Council determine as a threat to the peace, breach of the peace or act of aggression, in accordance with Article 39 of the Charter, any attempt to alter by force the settlement envisaged by this resolution.

Calls upon the inhabitants of Palestine to take such steps as may be necessary on their part to put this plan into effect;

Appeals to all Governments and all peoples to refrain from taking any action which might hamper or delay the carrying out of these recommendations.

The Assembly can only make a recommendation to Member States, but it is clearly expecting its recommendation to be carried out, asking the Security Council and the inhabitants of Palestine to implement the Plan, and asking everyone in the world not to hinder it.

The Commission mentioned in request (b) is the Palestine Commission, set up by the Assembly to go to Palestine and implement the Plan. Its members were Bolivia, Czechoslovakia, Denmark, Panama and the Philippines. The Commission was to be guided by recommendations of the general Assembly and instruction of the Security Council. If necessary, the Resolution asks the Security Council to take action under Articles 39 (determining there was a threat to the peace) and 41 (actions not using armed force, such as sanctions) to support the Commission in implementing the Plan. In request (c) it asks the Security Council to determine as a threat to the peace any attempt by force to resist or alter the implementation of the Plan. That would open the way for the UN to use force to implement the Plan.

The Plan

The complete text of the Plan is incorporated in the Resolution. It is a long document and not easy to follow since early paragraphs often refer to later paragraphs. The following is my summary of the main points applying to the Arab and Jewish States. Separate arrangements apply in the City of Jerusalem.

Boundaries and demographics. The areas of the two States are shown in the above map.

Each State is divided into three pieces, an attempt to include the major population centers of the respective communities. Territorial contiguity of each State is maintained by the use of two neutral crossing points: see them on the map to the south-west of Nazareth and to the south-west of Ramle. The City of Jerusalem is enlarged to include Bethlehem, and surrounded by the Arab State. The port of Jaffa, just south of Tel Aviv, center of the citrus trade developed by Arab farmers in the nineteenth century, is an exclave of the Arab State, with the Jewish State on its landward side.

The Jewish State is given almost all of the Negev, the southern semi-desert and desert part of Palestine. The Jewish State includes 55% of the area of Palestine, leaving 45% for the Arab state.

At the time of the Plan, the Jewish population within the area of the Jewish State was 498k (k=1000), the Arab population (including Bedouin) 497k, giving a total of 995k. In the Arab State there were 10k Jews and 725k Arabs, giving a total of 735k. In the City of Jerusalem there were 100k Jews and 105k Arabs, a total of 205k. Overall then, there were in Palestine 608k Jews and 1327k Arabs, a grand total of 1935k persons.

Jews were approximately one-third of the total population, but given 55% of the land, much of this being desert, to allow for the expected large scale Jewish immigration. The almost equal numbers of Jews and Arabs in the area of the Jewish state was acknowledged by UNSCOP to be a problem, but it was expected that the proportion of Arabs would decline because of Jewish immigration and also population movements resulting from citizenship changes as discussed in the next paragraph.

Citizenship, immigration, residence, transit. All residents of the States become citizens of the State in which they reside when it achieves its independence. Those who are part of the minority population of a State may opt within one year after independence to change their citizenship to that of the other State. The individual States control immigration and residence within their State. There is free transit and visitation between the States (and Jerusalem).

The Economic Union goes far beyond a common currency and customs union. It also includes major infrastructure: railways; inter-State highways; postal, telephone and telegraphic services; ports and airports; water and power. It also involves economic development, especially irrigation, land reclamation and soil conservation.

The Economic Union is controlled by a Joint Economic Board. Its decisions are binding on the States, and it can sanction a State that does not accept a decision, by withholding customs revenue. The Board has nine members. Three are appointed by each State, and three foreign members by the United Nations. For the first 10 years the Economic Union cannot be modified without the agreement of the General Assembly.

The process. The Mandate was to end, and all British forces withdrawn, by 1 August 1948, and independent Arab and Jewish states were to come into existence by 1 October 1948. The two states are established in a series of stages:

  • The Palestine Commission progressively takes over the administration of Palestine as Britain withdraws its armed forces. By 1 February 1948 a seaport suitable for substantial Jewish immigration should be evacuated.
  • The Commission delineates the frontiers of the two States in general accordance with the recommendation in the Plan.
  • The Commission selects a Provincial Council of Government for each state, with full authority in the areas under their control, but under the general direction of the Commission.
  • Before 1 April 1948 the Provisional Councils enter into an Undertaking to participate in the Economic Union. If they do not, the Commission enforces it.
  • The Commission progressively transfers full responsibility for the administration of the States to the Provisional Councils in the period between the termination of the Mandate and the establishment of the State’s independence.
  • The Councils set up administrative organs of government, central and local.
  • The Councils set up armed militias from residents of their State, under the operational control of their officers, with the Commission having general political and military control and choosing the High Command of the militias.
  • The Councils, by 1 October 1948, hold elections for a Constituent Assembly for their State. This draws up a democratic Constitution and chooses a Provisional Government to succeed the Provisional Council.

The Plan specifies a number of clauses which must be included in the Constitution of each State, the first being the establishment of a parliament elected by universal suffrage on the basis of proportional representation. Others cover such matters as human rights and accepting the principles of the United Nations.

At some point before independence each State must make a Declaration to the U.N accepting a number of stipulations. Two of these, concerning religious sites and religious and minority rights go into the constitution. These cannot be changed without the agreement of the General Assembly. Others cover such matters as citizenship, and acceptance of international agreements and financial obligations previously accepted by Palestine. These are regarded as fundamental laws of the state.

Achieving independence. The Plan does not make clear exactly how and when the states achieve independence. My interpretation is the following.

After the end of the Mandate, effective sovereignty over Palestine was vested in the Palestine Commission. This progressively transferred administrative authority to the Provisional Councils, which operated under its supervision. After the Provisional Council and the Constituent Assembly had produced a Constitution, the Provisional Council was replaced by the Provisional Government. It was at this point that the State became independent.

The Plan does not say anything about the States declaring their independence. That is unnecessary. The United States had to declare independence from Britain, because Britain did not want to let them go. The two States in the Plan do not need to declare independence from the Commission, because they have already been given it. In the same way, Israel did not need to declare independence from Britain on 14 May 1948, because the Mandate had already ended. Instead it simply declared the establishment of the State.

How independent? The two States described in the Plan are not really independent. The Plan has written a major part of their constitutions. The Palestine Commission has chosen the High Command of their militias. An Economic Union has been forced upon them, which cannot be modified for 10 years unless the General Assembly agrees. Decisions of the Joint Economic Board are binding on the States; in taking those decisions foreigners appointed by the UN have the casting vote.

To me, this is more like a federation of two statelets, under UN Trusteeship, than it is two independent States, since so much effective sovereignty has been vested in the Economic Board and its UN members.

Nevertheless, the Plan says that, with independence achieved, the States can apply to become Members of the United Nations, implying that they are sovereign States:

ADMISSION TO MEMBERSHIP IN THE UNITED NATIONS. When the independence of either the Arab or the Jewish State as envisaged in this plan has become effective and the declaration and undertaking, as envisaged in this plan, have been signed by either of them, sympathetic consideration should be given to its application for admission to membership in the United Nations in accordance with article 4 of the Charter of the United Nations.

There are two possible points of confusion in the wording of this paragraph. When it talks of the “independence of either the Arab or the Jewish State” it may suggest the possibility that only one State might become independent. But this is not “as envisaged in this Plan”. The word ‘either’ implies only that the achievements of independence by the two States are independent events, and not coordinated in time.

The paragraph refers first to the achievement of independence, and then to the signing of the Declaration (concerning religious sites) and Undertaking (concerning the Economic Union). This might suggest that a State could become independent without joining the Economic Union, but the United Nations would then be unsympathetic to its admission. This is not “as envisaged in this Plan”. The Declaration and Undertaking are compulsory, and signed before independence.

Is Israel the Jewish State of the Plan?

The answer is no. Israel’s Declaration of Establishment claims that UNGA Resolution 181 called for the establishment of a Jewish State in Palestine; that it bases itself “on the strength of the Resolution”; and offers to co-operate with the UN in implementing the Resolution and forming an economic union. (It does all this without using the words Palestine, Partition or Arab.)

However, the Arabs did not accept the Plan, and as the UN had no authority to divide Palestine against the wishes of the majority of its inhabitants, Britain refused to cooperate with the Palestine Commission. It brought forward the end of the Mandate to 14 May 1948, and did not allow the Commission into the country until two weeks before that date. On 14 May the State of Israel was declared, and the next day the General Assembly stood down the Commission. It was impossible to implement The Plan of Partition with Economic Union.

Israel’s Declaration was outside the process described in the Plan, and preempted its implementation. The only connection between the State of Israel and the Plan is that Israel, when asking for recognition by the US, declared its borders according to the Plan at the insistence of President Truman’s administration.

Could the Plan have worked?

The minority report of UNSCOP, recommending the Federal State Plan, argues the following:

The proposal of other members of the Committee for a union under artificial arrangements designed to achieve essential economic and social unity after first creating political and geographical disunity by partition, is impracticable, unworkable, and could not possibly provide for two reasonably viable States.

I tend to agree. In the Plan of Partition with Economic Union the two States are effectively glued together by the Joint Economic Board, not to mention that they are also glued together by infrastructure, resources and geography (see the map above). It seems to me bizarre that they should at the same time be independent sovereign states with two citizenships, hence two loyalties, two immigration policies, two armies, and two foreign policies. There is no mechanism for resolving differences between the States, apart from the casting vote of foreigners in the Joint Economic Board, diplomacy, or war.

I believe that such a two-state solution would indeed have been unworkable, whereas a federal solution with a democratic federal parliament and government would have had a much better chance of success, because the representatives of the two peoples would have had to work together on a day-to-day basis in the federal parliament to solve their common problems.

The same remains true today. However, the starting point is one where the two states already exist, but one of them is occupied by the other. Palestine needs to gain its independence before there can be any discussions about federation, merger or union.

Uri Avnery, the veteran Israeli peace activist, discussed the idea of an Israel-Palestine federation with Yasser Arafat, many years ago. In a recent article he discusses the impossibility of moving directly to a one-state solution. But he says that “the two-state solution is not a recipe for separation and divorce, but on the contrary, a kind of wedding… some kind of federation is inevitable… it is the only solution.” I agree.

But what do readers think? I will reply to all comments.

 

 

About David Gerald Fincham

Dr. David Gerald Fincham is a retired academic scientist from the United Kingdom. He now writes about the relationships between religion, science, and peace. His website is religion-science-peace.org.

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209 Responses

  1. Mooser
    July 31, 2015, 11:43 am

    “But he says that “the two-state solution is not a recipe for separation and divorce, but on the contrary, a kind of wedding… some kind of federation is inevitable… it is the only solution.” I agree.”

    What a wedding that will be! A khasuren die kalleh is tsu shayn!

    • David Gerald Fincham
      July 31, 2015, 12:37 pm

      Stop showing off, Mooser, and translate the last sentence. I don’t even know what language it is.

      • tokyobk
        July 31, 2015, 1:49 pm

        א חסרון: די כלה איז צו שיין

        Its Yiddish. The problem: The bride is too pretty. Used when someone finds a problem in anything.

        But who knows what point Mooser was trying to make other than he knows some Yiddish and that all stories here are, finally, about him and his humorous monologue.

      • Annie Robbins
        July 31, 2015, 2:11 pm

        actually, in light of tokyobk’s translation it makes sense to me. it means regardless of the plan, no matter how workable it might be, there are those who will make an effort to find fault with it.

      • Annie Robbins
        July 31, 2015, 2:27 pm

        and thank you david. there are those who like plans, they think making and sticking to a plan is the best way to go forward. i think of myself as a realist. i don’t think in the situation we are in today there’s a way to bring the sides together to make a plan. (see moosers comment).

        grabbing something from avnery:

        if not war, then “outside pressure”.

        I doubt this, too. The international boycott movement is quite effective, in its way. But it is far, far from being able to compel Israelis to do something that is opposed by every fiber of their being: to give up their sovereignty. The same goes for political pressure. It may hurt Israel, it may isolate it – though I don’t believe this is possible in this or the next generation – but this, too, won’t be enough to bring Israel to its knees.

        Convince the majority in Israel? One has to be very remote from Israeli reality to believe that this can happen in the foreseeable future. For more than 130 years, now, the core of the Zionist and Israeli raison d’etre has been Israeli (or “Jewish”) statehood. Many people have died for it. Every child in Israel is indoctrinated from kindergarten on, through school and the army, to see the state as the highest of all ideals. Give it up voluntarily? Not likely.

        note the will of israelis in his answer. people don’t give up something willfully. bds is not going to work because it ‘compels’ israelis. but it will work. and when it does, then it makes sense to look at plans. because the majority in israel doesn’t want a plan. even if it was the perfect plan the bride would be too pretty. because they want everything. it may take another decade or two (i don’t think it will). but at some point the international community will boycott israel like we did south africa. many/some people will probably leave israel. but for those who don’t their choice will be either to figure out a way to work it out with palestinians or survive in islolation. in todays world i don’t think isolation would last very long. there are other ways of forcing a population to it’s knees besides war. then, i think the plan part sounds like the next logical step.

      • David Gerald Fincham
        August 1, 2015, 12:20 pm

        Thanks, Annie. I certainly do not expect Israel to give up its sovereignty under pressure. The pressure is needed for Palestine to gain its independence. After that, Israel and Palestine (and by that I mean the populations more than the politicians) can work together on an equal basis to sort out how to live together peacefully. It might take a long time. I think that they will come to see the continued existence of two sovereign states as being unhelpful. In a future article I will have a suggestion for a type of merger that would enable both peoples to preserve their national lives and identities.

      • catalan
        July 31, 2015, 2:50 pm

        “there are other ways of forcing a population to it’s knees besides war. – ” Annie
        I am no saint. But I can’t sleep well knowing that someone is being forced to their knees due to my actions. It’s also the reason that I am glad that I did not move to Israel. I think that I would have had to twist my conscience knowing that someone that lives nearby has no civil rights.
        In a way, I know that my position is questionable morally. There is the school that says one ought to take a stand. Well, there are a lot of atrocities and injustices in the world. I feel that I would contribute to the total level of suffering if someone else innocent suffers due to my actions.
        It’s an Epicirean philosophy – I try to live well in my personal life and give up on fixing the world; insofar as my actions may affect innocent parties. I am happy to do things which positively affect people with minimal side effects. Donating to food banks for the homeless for instance. Giving away stuff.

      • Annie Robbins
        July 31, 2015, 3:59 pm

        catalan “bring Israel to its knees” was not my phrasing, it was avnery’s which i used metaphorically and i assumed he did too.

        as for you not being a saint, your sleeping patterns, donating to food banks and the homeless, your Epicirean philosophy of ‘trying to live well in your personal life’ ( and etc et etc more here: http://mondoweiss.net/profile/catalan ) i really can’t think of anyone who posts on our mondoweiss threads as determined with sharing their personal life with us as much as you. however, i do my best to wade through it and grasp whatever kind of point you’re making.

        I feel that I would contribute to the total level of suffering if someone else innocent suffers due to my actions.

        no worries about that, but they are those suffering in the world due to your inactions.

      • Philip Weiss
        July 31, 2015, 2:56 pm

        Thanks for translation. Never heard that line before tokyobk and mooser, fantastic.

      • Mooser
        July 31, 2015, 4:15 pm

        “it means regardless of the plan, no matter how workable it might be, there are those who will make an effort to find fault with it.”

        That, Annie, is the wonderful thing about Yiddish! I can select a quotation completely at random, and quite often it is applicable.

      • Mooser
        July 31, 2015, 4:18 pm

        “It’s an Epicirean philosophy – I try to live well in my personal life and give up on fixing the world”

        “catalan” we get it, you’re an all-rightnik! Not like me! Look at me “catalan”, I’m so poor, I’m wearing a cardboard belt!

      • Mooser
        July 31, 2015, 7:36 pm

        “Stop showing off, Mooser, and translate the last sentence. I don’t even know what language it is.”

        And I didn’t know what language you were speaking when you endorsed that “marriage” crack. I thought it was highly inappropriate, and you know, just a wee bit insensitive. It’s been a hell of a courtship, hasn’t it?

      • ziusudra
        August 1, 2015, 7:58 am

        Greetings D. G. Fincham,
        Please read:
        Ger.: Ein Hochzeit, die Braut ist so Schön.
        Eng.: A Wedding, the Bride is so beautiful.
        Yid.: A Kahsuren, die Kalleh is tsu shayn.
        ziusudra
        PS Others here have explained the metaphor behind it.

      • ziusudra
        August 1, 2015, 8:20 am

        Greetings Tokyobk,
        Could Kahsuren be understood as a ‘problem in merging” in Yiddish?
        A merger problem; a wedding problem.
        ziusudra

  2. Boomer
    July 31, 2015, 11:55 am

    Discussions here (and elsewhere) about Israel/Palestine often involve history or assertions about history. Sometimes they are relevant to the concerns of today and the future; often they are not. Your contribution seems to be among the relevant sort. Thanks for that.

    • David Gerald Fincham
      July 31, 2015, 12:39 pm

      Thank you for commenting. Studying history is necessary to separate the truth from the assertions.

      • DaBakr
        July 31, 2015, 5:10 pm

        your naive if you think there is one particular “truth” in the ME and in regards to Israel/Palestine and Jerusalem-especially. Better to state that there is no truth. Or only perceived truth. one persons assertions are the other persons truths.

      • David Gerald Fincham
        August 1, 2015, 12:23 pm

        DaBakr: thanks for commenting. talknic got in before me. I am in total accord with his response.

      • talknic
        July 31, 2015, 9:50 pm

        @ DaBakr “your naive if you think there is one particular “truth” in the ME and in regards to Israel/Palestine and Jerusalem-especially. etc etc etc etc”

        But there are truths. They’re recorded verbatim in the UNSC and other indisputable archives.

        Is it not true that the Jewish Agency said they considered UNGA res 181 as “binding”?
        http://unispal.un.org/UNISPAL.NSF/0/02EA8C2370F7C75C85257656006775C1

        If yes, then it is also true that successive Israeli Governments have been lying about UNGA being non-binding

        Is it not true that the Israeli Government proclaimed Israel’s extent? http://www.trumanlibrary.org/whistlestop/study_collections/israel/large/documents/newPDF/49.pdf

        If yes, then it is also true that successive Israeli Governments have been lying about Israel not having proclaimed any borders

        Is it not true that under International Law territories held under military control are “occupied”? http://avalon.law.yale.edu/20th_century/hague04.asp#art41

        Is it not true that Israel claimed that it controlled all Israeli territories and held under military control territories “outside the State of Israel”…”in Palestine”? http://wp.me/pDB7k-Xk (follow the links provided there)

        If yes, then it is also true that successive Israeli Governments have been lying about occupation since 1948

        Is it not true that Israel was recognized AND accepted into the UN whilst at war in territories “outside the State of Israel”…”in Palestine”?

        If yes, then it is also true that successive Israeli Governments, by the example of Israel itself, have had no legal cause to deny Palestinian statehood

      • inbound39
        August 7, 2015, 7:45 pm

        A comment you made earlier was that Israel is being asked to give up its Sovereignty. I find that a little strange given that no-one that I see is asking for Israel to give up its Sovereignty. What Israel is being asked is to return to within its declared borders which were defined by the Partition Plan which it agreed to and accepted and declared before the UN. What Israel is being asked to do is to cease and desist from its illegal acquisition of territory in pursuit of its illegitimate plan of A Greater Israel. That plan is based on religious beliefs and fantasy. Historically ancient Israel was always subservient to a greater ruler such as Macedonia under Alexander the Great or Persia or Rome. Under International Law one cannot impose their religious beliefs on another. Zionists prior to the Partition Plan attempted to get a state on religious grounds and rightfully it was thrown out. It is correct when you state the necessity to separate truth from assertions . You can add beliefs to that also. The main problem is Israel from its inception has projected beliefs and a multitude of false assertions which many today think is the truth because of their repetitiveness.

      • Hostage
        August 7, 2015, 11:33 pm

        A comment you made earlier was that Israel is being asked to give up its Sovereignty. I find that a little strange given that no-one that I see is asking for Israel to give up its Sovereignty. What Israel is being asked is to return to within its declared borders which were defined by the Partition Plan which it agreed to and accepted and declared before the UN.

        Neither the LoN nor the UN ever envisioned these entities being fully “sovereign,” “independent” states in the old-fashioned, classical sense. In fact, the terms regarding minority and religious rights and right of transit to visit the Holy Places were a limitation on sovereignty (effective control of borders) that was imposed by a series of international treaties, which predated the existence of either of those organizations. Those rights were not subject to alteration. They were part of the status quo (“existing rights”) of the non-Jewish communities of Ottoman Asia that were maintained intact by safeguarding clauses in the Balfour Declaration, The San Remo Resolution, and an entire Chapter on Religious and Minority Rights; and existing International Agreements in the UN “Plan for the Future Government of Palestine”.

        Even under the terms of the lopsided international boundary agreements that the Zionists had the British and French conclude on their behalf during the era of the mandate, the Syrians, Lebanese, and Transjordanians retained their rights to fishing, navigation, and grazing inside Palestine in the Hulda, Jordan river system, and the Sea of Galilee. Syrians even retained an easement and the right to build a pier on the Sea of Galilee and to use it for commerce, duty free. Those treaties were part of the stipulations that Israel accepted as part of the verbatim record, during the hearings on its own application for membership in the UN. They included these treaties and at least 38 more:
        *Exchange Of Notes Constituting An Agreement Between The British And French Governments Respecting The Boundary Line Between Syria And Palestine From The Mediterranean To El Hammé. Paris March 7, 1923, pdf page 7; and
        *Agreement between His Majesty’s Government and the French Government respecting the Boundary Line between Syria and Palestine from the Mediterranean to El Hámmé, Treaty Series No. 13 (1923), Cmd. 1910″ link to web.archive.org

        Likewise, I’ve cited the fact that the United States government viewed any country with an international obligation under a minority rights agreement, like the one contained in the UN Partition Plan, as a non-sovereign state or one with only limited sovereignty. I’ve commented in the past that non-Zionist Jews were responsible for incorporating those minority treaties into customary state practice and public international law in the mid-19th century. They were part and parcel of the requirements to establish a Jewish National Home “secured by public law”. Minority Rights Treaties were a fixture of the League of Nations process for creation of new states. Since we are talking about the Zionist Carlsbad resolution, I’ll quote what that very same Zionist Congress had to say about treaty protection of minority and religious groups:

        “The Peace Conference has created a parallel to the Balfour Declaration: the protection of racial minorities. This victory also has been gained by heavy fighting, which even up to the present remains a source of innumerable animosities and attacks against the Jews. Numerous local Zionist organisations and conferences had formulated the demand for Palestine and for national rights for the Jews in those countries where they live in great masses.

        The American Jewish Congress of 1918 accepted this resolution, and sent a delegation to Paris to make the necessary representations to the Peace Conference. The Zionists gave this move­ment their heartiest support. The Committee of Jewish Delegations was founded and devoted itself to this subject. In order to avoid any uncertainty and ambiguity, it is essential to define our standpoint in this matter with the greatest precision.

        The duty arose for us to share in the work of protecting the Jewish people in the Diaspora. New States have arisen and formerly small States have been enlarged. This creation or enlarging of States was certainly not, as in former times, dictated by the whim of an autocrat or by moves in the diplomatic game ; it was intended to serve a great idea, to create a permanent peace, both internally and externally. It is mean and chauvinistic to believe that the Peace Conference intended to limit the sovereignty of the new or enlarged States, and that it therefore laid upon them the duty of protecting their national minorities. That duty constitutes no interference in “ internal affairs” ; on the contrary, it is a principle
        of justice, concerning all mankind, that towers high above those “ internal affairs” and that is essential for that internal peace which is necessary for international peace. And thus with the creation of new States and changes of territory, through which millions of Jews found themselves under altered conditions, self-preservation of the race demanded that we should come forward as champions of their lawful interests. Such an attitude stood in complete accord with the internationally recognised Balfour Declaration, in which
        also reference is made to the safeguarding of the rights of the Jewish population in all countries. The Berlin Congress of 1878 had also taken up this question with regard to the Jews in Rumania.”

        — Report of the twelfth Zionist Congress, held at Carlsbad,
        http://babel.hathitrust.org/cgi/pt?id=osu.32435003707189;view=1up;seq=28

        Just to be clear, the text of the Treaty of Berlin (1878) protected all national minority groups in the newly created states, not just those of the Jews. It goes without saying that the Balfour Declaration and the Plan for the Future Government of Palestine didn’t leave the fundamental human rights of Arabs or Jews in either of the new states within the sole discretion of the new governments.

        The UN has created dozens of subsidiary organs to establish the State of Israel or the State of Palestine and to look after the human rights and property claims of both the Jewish and Arab refugees of Palestine. The Expert Legal Panel assigned to look into the Right of Return by the the Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People cited Israel’s acceptance of the minority protection plan contained in resolution 181(II) in a report to the Security Council as the source of Israel’s continuing legal obligations regarding the refugees:

        19. In this respect, it was pointed out that Israel was under binding obligation to permit the return of all the Palestinian refugees displaced as a result of the hostilities of 1948 and 1967. This obligation flowed from the unreserved agreement by Israel to honour its commitments under the Charter of the United Nations, and from its specific undertaking, when applying for membership of the United Nations, to implement General Assembly resolutions 181 (II) of 29 November 1947, safeguarding the rights of the Palestinian Arabs inside Israel, and 194 (III) of 11 December 1948, concerning the right of Palestinian refugees to return to their homes or to choose compensation for their property. This undertaking was also clearly reflected in General Assembly resolution 273 (III).

        link to un.org

  3. Blownaway
    July 31, 2015, 1:04 pm

    The history is interesting in that it serves to highlight the unfairness of the original partition. Most likely based on racism of the British in their superiority. However the conclusion of a federation (involuntary) or confederation (voluntary) sounds nice an would have been logical is now impossible. In order to federate you must have at least two entities and in this case one doesn’t exist and never will

    • David Gerald Fincham
      July 31, 2015, 2:44 pm

      There are two legal entities, the State of Israel and the State of Palestine. Both were created by the same process: declaration followed by recognition by other States. The West Bank and Gaza, part of Palestinian territory, are occupied/blockaded by Israeli forces. Resolution 242 said that a just and lasting peace must be based on two principles, the first of which is a withdrawal of Israeli forces from territories occupied in the recent conflict (1967). The problem is that no-one has been willing to apply pressure on Israel to make such a withdrawal. If there was an enforceable Security Council Resolution, not vetoed by the USA, setting a deadline for a withdrawal, Palestine and Israel would be independent states. The American people can achieve that if they make clear to their politicians that they cannot be bought by AIPAC money, adn will only vote for politicians who support Palestinian independence.

      • michelle
        July 31, 2015, 6:59 pm

        .
        seems like America needs a balanced voice/lobby(?) from Palestine/The Middle East
        .
        G-d Bless
        .

      • David Gerald Fincham
        August 1, 2015, 2:58 am

        Michelle, you are right. May I also say that you are a lovely person, always invoking God’s blessing on us. May God bless you and all those that you love.

      • michelle
        August 1, 2015, 11:17 pm

        .
        Hello David Gerald Fincham
        thank you for your kindness
        may G-d Bless you & all you love
        m
        it’s this place these people they bring their hopes & dreams
        and share them with/include every & all
        .
        G-d Bless
        .

    • Hostage
      August 8, 2015, 12:58 am

      The history is interesting in that it serves to highlight the unfairness of the original partition.

      That sort of talk always bothers me. The General Assembly plan wasn’t really unfair at all. It preserved fundamental, individual human rights and religious communal and individual property rights. It required democratic and proportional representation in the new, constitutional governments. Together with the termination of the mandate, it finally protected 4/5ths of the former mandated territory of Palestine/Transjordan from any future claims related to Jewish immigration or colonization and required that existing treaties on Arab and Bedouin regional fishing, navigation, and grazing rights continue in full force and effect within the Jewish state – in addition to the internal right of transit for all of the inhabitants to all points within the two new states and the Corpus Separatum.

      It mandated joint use and management under international supervision of ports, irrigation projects, highways, communications networks, fiscal and currency policies, and economic development. As David has pointed out, final determinations on anything touching those subjects were really “above the pay grade” of any individual autocrat in either state. Any disputes over interpretation of the resolution were placed under the compulsory jurisdiction of the World Court. So, I just don’t believe that any Palestinian has ever elected to sit in a remote refugee camp waiting for a 1 state solution to materialize, because this particular alternative is so manifestly unfair.

      Once again, I think the argument over the number of states assumes that they have “sovereign” rights to “Lord it over” the inhabitants in ways that are simply not applicable under the UN plan.

  4. Steve C
    July 31, 2015, 1:08 pm

    I cannot see a possible way for Palestine to move from occupation to anything resembling true independence. As the dominant power and a democracy (i.e. swayed by the economic interests of its elite), Israel could not resist the demand to massively interfere in the emergence of a Palestinian state, thus making it anything but independent or representative.

    It seems much more possible for outside forces to make full annexation (with full suffrage) economically preferable to permanent occupation. A conversion of Israel into a representative democracy with respect for minority rights may take time, but this type of change has been shown to be possible all over the world.

    • David Gerald Fincham
      August 1, 2015, 3:17 am

      “I cannot see a possible way for Palestine to move from occupation to anything resembling true independence”.

      A Chapter 7 UNSC resolution is, I believe, a possibility, if the American people would support it. The IDF forces in the West Bank would withdraw and be replaced by UN troops. Possibly Palestine could be placed under a temporary UN trusteeship. This is preferable to your suggestion of annexation by an ‘outside forces’.

      • Steve C
        August 2, 2015, 10:27 am

        This is precisely why Israel will never yield control to an international force. Such a change would only be an economic loss for them, since the exploitation of resources and people would have to stop.
        Annexatuon is already virtually complete. With the number of settlers in place, there can no longer be a withdrawal that would allow independence.

      • David Gerald Fincham
        August 3, 2015, 7:18 am

        Steve C: I do not agree. Israel has a real problem with the West Bank: it has lots of Arab residents. Israel will not annex, because that would change Israel’s demographic, making it no longer a Jewish state. It cannot maintain the status quo indefinitely, because the world is waking up to its illegal behavior. If a UN resolution demanded an end to the occupation, backed up by a threat of sanctions, plus some US sweeteners, then Israel would eventually submit.

      • Mooser
        August 2, 2015, 11:44 am

        ” The IDF forces in the West Bank would withdraw and be replaced by UN troops. Possibly Palestine could be placed under a temporary UN trusteeship. This is preferable to your suggestion of annexation by an ‘outside forces’.”

        Oh, now I see. We are going to dis-arm the IDF? And take Israel away from the Zionists? Give it back to the UN?

        Did you tell “Hophmi” and “Irvi” these things?

      • David Gerald Fincham
        August 3, 2015, 7:24 am

        Mooser: please read more carefully. I did not say disarm the IDF, I said they should withdraw from territory captured in 1967. I did not say take Israel from the Zionists, I said take Palestine from the Zionists.

      • Mooser
        August 3, 2015, 11:39 am

        “I said they should withdraw from territory captured in 1967.”

        Well, can’t argue with that. They certainly should. It could happen.

  5. just
    July 31, 2015, 1:13 pm

    “Palestine needs to gain its independence before there can be any discussions about federation, merger or union.”

    Absolutely. And then it has to be 1S1P1V.

    Unfortunately, in the meantime and in order for the independent Palestine to endure, I believe that due to the violent, criminal and thieving nature of Israel, it must be placed under international protection ~ including Gaza. This protection has long been sought and has yet to be given. From Allison Deger’s article today:

    ““We hold the Israeli government fully responsible for the brutal assassination of the toddler Ali Saad Dawabsha,” chief Palestinian negotiator Saeb Erekat said in a statement this morning. “Over a year ago President Abbas requested international protection for Palestinians, a call that has been ignored so far. Today we can see the consequences,” he continued.

    Erekat also noted “Since 2004, over 11,000 settler attacks have taken place against Palestinian homes, cars, churches, mosques, trees and others with full impunity.””

    – See more at: http://mondoweiss.net/2015/07/palestinian-toddler-settler#sthash.Exo70xdx.dpuf

    This is a very fine article, and I thank you for it, David Gerald Fincham. I read it and had to wait and try to give a thoughtful response to your query.

    I say this because I think this was an awful idea, and was terribly unfair from the very beginning. (I know it’s not helpful, though ;)

    • David Gerald Fincham
      July 31, 2015, 3:18 pm

      Thank you, just, for your thoughtful response. I agree absolutely with your idea of international protection. It was part of the Arab peace plan that the departing IDF should be replaced by UN peace-keeping forces.

  6. talknic
    July 31, 2015, 2:03 pm

    Nice one.

    A couple of points

    1) one cannot separate Jews and Arabs so easily //the Jewish population within the area of the Jewish State was 498k (k=1000), the Arab population (including Bedouin) 497k, giving a total of 995k. In the Arab State there were 10k Jews and 725k Arabs, giving a total of 735k. //

    Many Jews were Arab. Jewish and non-Jewish is far more accurate. ( If we consider the Arab Jews from the Arab states it becomes even more apparent that today, a large portion of Israeli Jews carry Arab DNA http://wp.me/pDB7k-19Y )

    2) //There are two possible points of confusion in the wording of this paragraph. When it talks of the “independence of either the Arab or the Jewish State” it may suggest the possibility that only one State might become independent. But this is not “as envisaged in this Plan”. The word ‘either’ implies only that the achievements of independence by the two States are independent events, and not coordinated in time.//

    Independence is entirely unilateral. There was no provision for co-signing. One of the few truths uttered by the Jewish Agency prior to declaration

    Friday, 19 March 1948 Rabbi Silver replacing Mr. Shertok at the Council table as representative of the Jewish Agency for Palestine stated:

    “The setting up of one State was not made conditional upon the setting up of the other State.”

    And again Security Council S/PV.271 19 March 1948 The representative of the Jewish Agency, Rabbi Silver:

    “ The setting up of one State was not made conditional upon the setting up of the other State. Mr. Herschel Johnson, representing the United States delegation, speaking in a sub-committee of the Ad Hoc Committee on the Palestinian Question on 28 October 1947, stated, in discussing this very matter in connexion with economic union: “The element of mutuality would not necessarily be a factor, as the document might be signed by one party only.”

    It seems the LoN Mandate was as close as it ever got to a just solution. One state, equality for all.

    • David Gerald Fincham
      July 31, 2015, 4:06 pm

      Thanks talknic. On the question of Jews and Arabs, it is not a matter of DNA, but of identity. it has always been the case that Jewish Palestinians attached more significance to their Jewishness than to the fact that they spoke a version of the local language.

      The Plan envisaged was a plan to create two states in a series of parallel stages. As I emphasized, the achievement of independence by the two states were independent events, not coordinated in time. But no-one envisaged the possibility that only one state would be created, because that would have meant that the Plan had failed completely in its objective.

      Rabbi Silver’s remarks are pure hasbara. He is trying to create the impression that Israel’s unilateral Declaration immediately at the end of the Mandate, completely outside the process described in the Plan, was somehow authorized by the Plan. It wasn’t. And Mr. Johnson is talking complete nonsense when he says that the undertaking to enter the Economic Union might be signed by only one party. A treaty of union signed by only one party is not a union at all.

      • talknic
        July 31, 2015, 11:08 pm

        @ David
        “On the question of Jews and Arabs, it is not a matter of DNA, but of identity. it has always been the case that Jewish Palestinians attached more significance to their Jewishness than to the fact that they spoke a version of the local language. “

        DNA is an inescapable reality. Rhetoric about a more significant attachment can be altered at whim.

        “Rabbi Silver’s remarks are pure hasbara. He is trying to create the impression that Israel’s unilateral Declaration immediately at the end of the Mandate, completely outside the process described in the Plan, was somehow authorized by the Plan.”

        Hasbara they may be, never the less spoken by the Jewish Agency. It shows just how deceitful the Zionistas have been.

        ” Mr. Johnson is talking complete nonsense when he says that the undertaking to enter the Economic Union might be signed by only one party. A treaty of union signed by only one party is not a union at all. “

        1st the states need to exist, only then could a treaty to Economic Union be signed. I re-iterate, “independence” by its very nature is entirely unilateral.

        Of interest to readers the British stance on partition http://unispal.un.org/UNISPAL.NSF/0/16B8C7CC809B7E5B8525694B0071F3BD

      • David Gerald Fincham
        August 1, 2015, 2:45 am

        “It shows just how deceitful the Zionistas have been.” Yes. Israel’s Declaration says “On the 29th November, 1947, the United Nations General Assembly passed a resolution calling for the establishment of a Jewish State in Eretz-Israel”. No it did not, it recommended a plan to partition Palestine into a Jewish State and an Arab state. I counted 9 such lies in the Declaration. As they started, so they have continued.

        “1st the states need to exist, only then could a treaty to Economic Union be signed”. The Plan says that the states needed to sign the undertaking to enter the Economic Union before independence, and it could not be modified without the consent of the UN .

        “independence” by its very nature is entirely unilateral” yes, that is why I say that the Plan was NOT really a plan to produce independent states.

    • traintosiberia
      August 1, 2015, 7:41 pm

      Only Silver can get away with the claim that a document signed by one of the two parties could be binding to the other party as well. He could for he was allowed by the powerful countries who officially were subscribing even at that time to equality,decolonization,peaceful resolution of existing conflics and were positioning themselves as the arbiter . In a more rational environment not corrupted by money or domestic politics,Silver would have asked to leave politics or go to jail for threatening President Truman.

      BTW,the UN General Assembly resolution was not binding. It was not approved by UNSC.
      UN should have been investigated for horse trading ,pressurizing,and bribing other members with threat of economic strangulation of multiple countries who switched votes under pressure . USA possibly could have lost the status as veto wielding member for abuse of the position and for allowing rogue elements in Supreme Court and Cabinet to impersonatethemselves as legitimate government officials in charge of the situation.

  7. Mooser
    July 31, 2015, 4:21 pm

    And getting prettier and prettier as the thread goes on, isn’t she?

  8. ivri
    August 1, 2015, 4:25 am

    I agree that a federation is the reasonable arrangement and, indeed, that has been a tacit policy of Israel for a long time. However, the Palestinians for a long time blocked it through demands on Israel that it could not satisfy due to mainly security concerns (which the second Intifada made iron-clad in Israeli mindset – blocking any venue for that happening again, at all costs, has become a sine qua non for any approach).
    But apparently the Palestinians cannot agree to such an arrangement formally for a host of reasons so it is likely to happen by default – a continued stalemate that evolves into a new reality. The total chaos in the region around, which not only dwarfs the Palestinian case at large, but also gives fresh perspective to the West-Bank people about possible alternatives, will surely help that process.

    • homingpigeon
      August 1, 2015, 10:15 am

      indeed, when you kick someone in the face they should agree not to mess up your boots with their teeth marks.

    • David Gerald Fincham
      August 1, 2015, 1:22 pm

      ivri: thanks for commenting. Federation will not come by default, but by agreement. It is a long way ahead. Israel’s security problems arise mainly from their occupation and colonization of Palestinian territory. The I-P problem can be solved, but only when Palestine has gained its independence so that the two sides can talk on an equal basis.

      • ivri
        August 1, 2015, 7:05 pm

        With all due respect Mr. Fincham, the problem is, that the security concerns that I elaborated upon on one hand and leaving of the territories on the other hand are in a “chicken and egg” kind of relationship -namely, in the context here, which should come first (you seem to suggest that the latter be so). And that`s exactly the core difficulty, the Gordian knot, of the process here – cannot be just bypassed by positively sounding slogans. If you had lived here throughout the second Intifada (which actually came on the heels of the Oslo accord) you would surely understand that much better.
        Note also that the heartland of Israel proper, the Green line, is less than 10 miles wide at its center (the main vulnerability in the Intifada times) and moreover the whole area could be subject to mortars, Gaza style, from anywhere across the Green line – altogether, having the potential to disrupt life completely in Israel. That`s the story in a nutshell.

      • Annie Robbins
        August 1, 2015, 11:47 pm

        the whole area could be subject to mortars, Israeli style, from anywhere across the Green line – altogether, having the potential to disrupt life completely in the west bank and Gaza. That`s the story in a nutshell.

      • Bornajoo
        August 1, 2015, 11:51 pm

        “the whole area could be subject to mortars, Israeli style, from anywhere across the Green line – altogether, having the potential to disrupt life completely in the west bank and Gaza. That`s the story in a nutshell.”

        Brilliant Annie! +100

      • hophmi
        August 1, 2015, 7:25 pm

        Israel’s security problems predate any occupation. Arabs do not accept the idea of Jewish sovereignty in their part of the world, and Westerners on the left cannot seem to acknowledge this reality when they produce pie-in-the-sky ideas that have no basis in reality.

      • David Gerald Fincham
        August 2, 2015, 3:22 am

        hophmi: The Arab states have said that they will recognize Israel if there is a peace agreement with the Palestinians. The Palestinians have recognized the right of the State of Israel to live in peace and security. The stumbling block is Israel’s refusal to accept Palestinian sovereignty in any part of what they call “The Land of Israel” i.e former Palestine.

      • traintosiberia
        August 1, 2015, 7:49 pm

        Devout Jews have lived in this part for centuries. Rest have left whenever economic situation have got worst or opportunities abroad were more exciting .
        This can happen again . This is bound to happen when western subsidies gradually dwindle down . Israel will be again a country without a whole lot of Jews to keep it going. It will crumble from within.

      • RoHa
        August 2, 2015, 5:18 am

        “Arabs do not accept the idea of Jewish sovereignty in their part of the world,”

        That is to say that Arabs do not accept the idea that European Jews have the right to invade Palestine, claim exclusive rights to the country, and then, through terrorism and violence, drive Arabs of their farms, steal Arab houses and businesses, expel a large proportion of the Arab population and make the remainder second class citizens, reject all reasonable peace deals, make war on the Arab neighbours, expand into another section of Palestine, subject the people there to an oppressive regime while dispossessing as many more of them, slaughter many more both in Gaza and the neighbouring countries, and lie continuously about the whole thing.

        What irrational bigots those Arabs are!

      • Bornajoo
        August 2, 2015, 8:21 am

        “Arabs do not accept the idea of Jewish sovereignty in their part of the world,”

        “That is to say that Arabs do not accept the idea that European Jews have the right to invade Palestine, claim exclusive rights to the country, and then, through terrorism and violence, drive Arabs of their farms, steal Arab houses and businesses, expel a large proportion of the Arab population and make the remainder second class citizens, reject all reasonable peace deals, make war on the Arab neighbours, expand into another section of Palestine, subject the people there to an oppressive regime while dispossessing as many more of them, slaughter many more both in Gaza and the neighbouring countries, and lie continuously about the whole thing.

        What irrational bigots those Arabs are!” (RoHa)

        Superbly stated. + 67! (1 for each year since the start of the Nakba)

      • CigarGod
        August 2, 2015, 8:56 am

        When you are hot, you are hot. Or…When you are hot, you are RoHa.

      • eljay
        August 2, 2015, 9:00 am

        || hophmi: Israel’s security problems predate any occupation. Arabs do not accept the idea of Jewish sovereignty in their part of the world … ||

        For almost seven decades, “Jewish sovereignty” has consisted of:
        – Jewish terrorism;
        – ethnic cleansing of non-Jews;
        – Jewish supremacism in a religion-supremacist state;
        – occupation and oppression;
        – colonialism and expansionism;
        – disregard for international law;
        – belligerence and intransigence; and
        – sundry (war) crimes.

        There’s no reason why “Arabs” or anyone else in the world should accept that sort of “sovereignty” or behaviour from any Jewish or non-Jewish religion, tribe, collective, ethnicity, culture, people, nation or civilization (or floor wax or dessert topping).

      • David Gerald Fincham
        August 3, 2015, 3:28 am

        elijay: great stuff. But unfortunately Jewish sovereignty has been a reality since 1948, and once Israel had been recognized as a sovereign state by the two superpowers, there was no possibility of getting rid of it. In fact, at Lausanne in 1949 the Arabs did almost accept the existence of Israel: they certainly made a proposal about the division of the land, as did Israel.

      • Mooser
        August 2, 2015, 11:30 am

        “Arabs do not accept the idea of Jewish sovereignty in their part of the world, and Westerners on the left cannot seem to acknowledge this reality when they produce pie-in-the-sky ideas that have no basis in reality.”

        Zionism, of course, and “Jewish sovereignty” (Of course, for Orthodox, real Jews, only) is not a blintz-in-the-sky idea? Sure, okay!

      • just
        August 2, 2015, 4:18 pm

        Expertly dissected, RoHa!

        Well done.

      • eljay
        August 4, 2015, 7:07 am

        || David Gerald Fincham: … unfortunately Jewish sovereignty has been a reality since 1948, and once Israel had been recognized as a sovereign state by the two superpowers, there was no possibility of getting rid of it. In fact, at Lausanne in 1949 the Arabs did almost accept the existence of Israel … ||

        Is the sovereignty Israeli / Israel’s, or is it Jewish / Judaism’s?

      • hophmi
        August 4, 2015, 3:15 pm

        “the whole area could be subject to mortars, Israeli style, from anywhere across the Green line – altogether, having the potential to disrupt life completely in the west bank and Gaza. That`s the story in a nutshell.”

        Yeah, sure. The cult thinks you’re super clever, Annie. But you’re going to have to acknowledge Israeli security concerns, which are quite legitimate, for anyone outside of the cult to care.

      • CigarGod
        August 4, 2015, 6:08 pm

        “Security concerns.”
        Yeah…what you really mean is – fear.
        You zionists bought your fear, dude…by practicing war crimes. You own it.

        Like the southern racists, you are rightly fearful, that once free…big, swinging Palestinians are going to pleasure your women right away from you.

      • hophmi
        August 4, 2015, 3:17 pm

        “The Arab states have said that they will recognize Israel if there is a peace agreement with the Palestinians. The Palestinians have recognized the right of the State of Israel to live in peace and security. The stumbling block is Israel’s refusal to accept Palestinian sovereignty in any part of what they call “The Land of Israel” i.e former Palestine.”

        Who cares, David? It’s the Palestinians that have to accept Israel’s right to exist, not the Arab states. Israel has negotiated for many years, and indicated a willingness to make a deal many times. It’s the Palestinians who have routinely walked away from the table, largely because they can’t countenance Jewish sovereignty in the Middle East.

      • David Gerald Fincham
        August 4, 2015, 5:21 pm

        You are wrong. The Palestinians have accepted the right of the State of Israel to exist in peace and security.

      • talknic
        August 4, 2015, 9:08 pm

        hophmi “It’s the Palestinians that have to accept Israel’s right to exist”

        Care to cite the Law … thx

        Numerous UN Member states do not recognize each other. What IS required is “respect for and acknowledgement of the sovereignty, territorial integrity and political independence of every State in the area and their right to live in peace within secure and recognized boundaries free from threats or acts of force;” something Israel regularly fails to do.

        BTW who did Israel recognize before gaining recognition itself?

        ” Israel has negotiated for many years, and indicated a willingness to make a deal many times.”

        Israel is required to adhere to the law. The Palestinians are not required to forgo ANY of their legal rights, deal or no deal. Swapping non-Israeli territory for non-Israeli territory so Israel can keep non-Israeli territory has no legal basis. It’s not a deal anyone in their right mind would accept, nor is it a deal anyone in their right mind would offer

        “It’s the Palestinians who have routinely walked away from the table, largely because they can’t countenance Jewish sovereignty in the Middle East.”

        Strange, the Palestinians before the world at the UN offered 78%
        of their rightful territories for peace. Israel’s response was to build more illegal settlements.

        Your arguments have absolutely no merit.

      • talknic
        August 4, 2015, 10:59 pm

        @ hophmi “Israel’s security problems predate any occupation”

        You talk bullsh*t soooo well. Professional?

        Jewish forces under plan Dalet BEFORE Israel’s borders were proclaimed were occupying territory not slated for the Jewish State.

        On 22nd May 1948 the Israeli Government claimed Israeli forces were in military control (occupied) territories “outside the State of Israel” … “in Palestine”!

        3 Jun 1948 in the Knesset

        Report to the Provisional Government of Israel by Prime Minister and Minister of Defence Ben-Gurion 3 Jun 1948

        "The entire expanse of the State of Israel allocated to us under the terms of the UN resolution is in our hands, and we have conquered several important districts outside those boundaries".
        and;
        "To the greatest possible extent, we will remain constantly on the offensive, which will not be confined to the borders of the Jewish State".

        " Arabs do not accept the idea of Jewish sovereignty in their part of the world"

        Read the 2005 Arab peace proposal

        That you continue to peddle nonsense is highly amusing

      • CigarGod
        August 4, 2015, 11:45 pm

        It’s kind of like having your own monkey…that keeps getting into the gin…and then kicking off his diapers.

      • Hostage
        August 5, 2015, 10:33 pm

        Israel’s security problems predate any occupation. Arabs do not accept the idea of Jewish sovereignty in their part of the world

        Quite rightly so. The UN plan could not allow the Jewish Agency and Vaad Leumi to simply appoint themselves (alone) as the provisional government of any state – free to exploit all of the country’s ports, communications, rail, highway, and natural resources or to regulate the currency and fiscal policy without any outside, international constraints.

        The greedy Zionist machers had always demanded so much territory that they either didn’t own or inhabit, and which contained the bulk of the Arab revenue generating enterprises, that there was never anything left over but a non-viable Arab rump state. That’s why the UN decided to let them subsidize it through the device of an Economic Union. The Jewish community had no permission from the UN to assume “all executive, legislative, and judicial powers” over the state’s Arab inhabitants; to drive-off the bulk of the Arab population; to distribute Arab lands and homes to hundreds of thousands of displaced European Jews; to invade the neighboring Arab state; and to then place all of the territory inhabited by Israel’s own Arab citizens – plus the Arab territory occupied under the armistice agreements – under the jurisdiction of an Israeli Military Governor. Israel promptly refused to allow any of the displaced Arab persons to return to their homes in violation of IHL, and the explicit terms of the resolutions adopted by both the General Assembly and the Security Council. To add insult to injury, Israel has always sent the international community the on-going bill for maintaining its grubby little apartheid state.

        Israel employed a Military Government, until just a few days before it began invading and occupying the remainder of the territory (in November of 1966) that had originally been allocated to the Arab state in 1947. See Shira Robinson’s, “Citizen Strangers: Palestinians and the Birth of Israel’s Settler State,” and John Quigley, “Apartheid Outside Africa: The Case of Israel”, 2 Ind. Int’l & Comp. L. Rev. 221 (1991-1992).

        Here’s how Netanel Lorch, tried to sum up the situation in his introduction to the “Great Knesset Debate” Vol 4, pdf page 211. Please note that readers should easily discern or understand that Lorch’s claim, that Arabs always enjoyed full civil rights, is a barefaced lie:

        Abolition of the Military Government
        Introduction
        Ever since the War of Independence of 1948-49, certain areas of the country which were heavily-populated by Arabs, particularly those which had come under Israeli control as the result of the General Armistice Agreement with Jordan and were close to the armistice lines, were administered by a Military Government. From time to time the Opposition—in rare unanimity of left and right—had called for the abo­lition of the Military Government, maintaining that security could be maintained by other means. However, even though military regula­tions had been gradually relaxed or eliminated, the Government of the
        day had been reluctant to relinquish a tool which under certain cir­cumstances might one day become vital again, even at short notice. Towards the end of 1966 [Sitting 107 of the Sixth Knesset 8 November 1966] the Government, led by Levi Eshkol, deter­mined that the Military Government was no longer necessary, and tabled legislation aiming at its total abolition. From the very outset, the Arab citizens of Israel, including those in areas under Military Government, have enjoyed full civil rights, in­cluding the right to vote. Thus, it may be assumed that electoral consid­erations played a part in the decision and in the relevant debate.

        http://jcpa.org/wp-content/uploads/2012/02/KnessetDebatesVol4.pdf

        Eshkol noted that the [inhuman] Emergency Defense Regulations (1945) would still be available for use in the future to deal with Israel’s Arab citizens. The November 1966 raid on Es Sammu is marked by many historians, including Michael Oren, as the event that started the region down the path to the Six Day War. Oren also noted Eshkol’s exasperation over the General staff’s eagerness to start a war of choice and his prophetic comment that US assistance would be required afterward to consolidate Israel’s territorial gains. But the act of formally annexing the Arab territory in November of 1966, without allowing its displaced inhabitants to return, hold regional congresses; or vote on the question was an act of aggression, in and of itself. It was a violation of the relevant IHL and the relevant resolutions of both the UN General Assembly and UN Security Council on the subject.

        The analysis of the partition plan, so far as David has carried it out, underscores the fact that the General Assembly never intended to permit the Jews or Arabs to exercise complete “sovereignty” over one another under the terms of the UN “Plan for the Future Government of Palestine”. It certainly didn’t authorize the new governments to permanently exile anyone under the pretext of security or sovereignty.

        FYI, the relative degree of “sovereignty” or “independence” enjoyed by a political unit has nothing to do with the existence of its statehood. Those principles had become a racist concept by the era of WWII that was deployed to justify conquest and the domination of portions of Europe, Africa, Asia, and the Pacific on the grounds that their populations either lacked those qualities or were deficient in some respect. Your comments here on the subject of Arabs are a great example of that Hophmi.

        At the San Francisco UN Conference, it was agreed that the controversial term “sovereign equality” would only be retained in international relations and the UN Charter with the understanding that it merely implies that all states enjoy a short list of agreed upon juridical rights and protections on the basis of complete equality with one another.

        But the international community of states had long-since been dictating the constitutional terms of governance respecting individual rights, the right of transit, and treatment of minorities as they impacted both internal relations and the conduct of mutual relations between states. They had already begun doing that on the day the ink began to dry on the Westphalian Treaties of Peace. The idea that state-oriented legal positivism was recognized or practiced in the 19th and early 20th century or that only fully sovereign, independent states were eligible for membership in either the LoN or UN is simply untrue. The official documentary record reveals that everyone agreed to leave the terms “state” and “nation” undefined so that political units, like the Colony of India, the French mandates of Syria and Lebanon, the Soviet Socialist Republics of Byelorussia and Ukraine; and the US Philippine territory could become Charter members of the UN despite the fact that they were not considered sovereign or independent states in 1945.

        As the LoN Mandatories, Great Britain together with France, had already concluded and implemented over 40 international agreements on behalf of the “mandated states”, as such. Among other things they guaranteed their inhabitants the right to cross the new boundaries they had established in Ottoman Asia in order to exercise their traditional fishing, navigation, and grazing rights in Palestine and elsewhere. That was done in recognition of the economic interdependence of the region and the impossibility of establishing viable states for a few, at the expense of the other inhabitants.

        Part 3, subsection C. “Declaration” of resolution 181(II) required the partite states to take on and honor all of those existing agreements on boundaries, transit, fishing, and grazing rights, even after so-called “independence”. There was never any other offer on the table. This was the same sort of deal the British had offered in London under the guise of provinces, dressed-up as “states” and a permanent UN trusteeship for the region of Jerusalem and Bethlehem. In 2003, the ICJ noted that right of transit was already under international protection in accordance with agreements dating back to Article 62 of the Treaty of Berlin (1878). The San Remo resolution and the UNSCOP report had both noted the obligation to maintain the status quo established by that treaty. Both the Versailles “Committee on New States and Minorities” and the Woodhead Commission on partition recommended against creating a separate Jewish state, because the remaining Arab territory would require permanent international subventions (grants or British loan guarantees) from foreign taxpayers in order to be viable.

        US Secretary of State Marshall demanded an explanation when the UNSCOP report came to the same conclusion. He was assured that the two states would remain one economic unit and have a joint fiscal policy (the wealthy state would finance the other as a first resort). US Ambassador Johnson was merely commenting on the fact that the resolution allowed the UN Palestine Commission to conclude that arrangement and the other details of the Plan of Economic Union and Transit on behalf of the two non-independent states, if their provisional councils had not been named by the commission and established by 1 April 1948. That was long before the scheduled termination of the mandate.

      • David Gerald Fincham
        August 6, 2015, 4:35 am

        Wow! Thank you once again, Hostage, for sharing your immense knowledge with us. It will take me some time to digest it all.

        One question: “the act of formally annexing the Arab territory in November of 1966”. I had no knowledge of such an act – please provide a reference. I am very surprised to hear of it. If Israel formally annexed Arab territory, that would amount to declaring the Green Line as its border, would it not? And that would mean that Israel disclaimed any sovereignty over the West Bank, would it not?

      • Hostage
        August 6, 2015, 7:36 am

        One question: “the act of formally annexing the Arab territory in November of 1966″. I had no knowledge of such an act – please provide a reference. I am very surprised to hear of it. If Israel formally annexed Arab territory, that would amount to declaring the Green Line as its border, would it not?

        I did. The link to the minutes of the Knesset session that I provided supplies the details of how the Military Government was formally abolished and Israel’s entire municipal code, including all of its new discriminatory laws, were applied to the territory in question through an act that was tabled and adopted in early November of 1966. That was, by definition, an annexation.

        The occupied territory beyond the partition lines had been administered under a Military Government up until that moment. Under the Hague Rules, the occupying power is encouraged to retain the laws that were previously in effect. Both country’s (Jordan and Israel) had adopted Transition Acts that retained the old laws that were in effect during the mandate era in their respective occupied territories. But those still required some provision to permit the military governor or some other official to exercise the powers and functions that were formerly reserved to the British King, the Privy Council, or the High Commissioner. In the case of the Israeli armistice occupation, there was no good faith effort to return to a state of normalcy and permit internally or externally displaced persons to go home after the hostilities had ended. They remained where they were under martial law and emergency regulations for nearly two decades, while the municipal code in the Jewish inhabited territory continued to evolve and change. Quigley outlines how the election laws were used to outlaw Arab political parties and how the provision of funding for basic necessities was employed to extort the Arab voters into supporting the dominate Labor party coalitions.

        By way of comparison, John Baggot Glubb, the commander of the Arab Legion, wrote in “A Soldier with the Arabs that British Foreign Secretary Bevin had given the green light for the Arab Legion to occupy the territory allocated to the Arab state after the Prime Minister of Transjordan explained to him that King Abdullah had received hundreds of petitions from Palestinian notables requesting protection upon the withdrawal of the British forces. Eugene Rogan says that those petitions, from nearly every town and village in Palestine, are preserved in the state archives and were published in “The Hashemite Documents: The Papers of Abdullah bin al-Husayn, volume V: Palestine 1948 (Amman 1995)”. see Chapter 5, Jordan and 1948, in “The war for Palestine: rewriting the history of 1948”, By Eugene L. Rogan, and Avi Shlaim, Cambridge University Press, 2001.

        I’ve commented in the past, about the fact that the second Arab Palestinian Conference at Jericho had adopted resolutions (1) calling for a provisional union and joint Kingdom with Transjordan; and (2) naming Abdullah the King of Arab Palestine. Contrary to Zionist propaganda, Abdullah could not have “prevented the creation of a Palestinian state” by getting himself named King of the place in December of 1948.

        Although he had already been named the sovereign, he did not extend “Jordanian” municipal law there, until after the national plebiscite had elected the Palestinian lawmakers from the West Bank, who ratified the 1950 Act of Union Between the Two Banks and participated in drafting and adopting the first “Jordanian” constitution and municipal code. Volume 2 of the US State Department’s Digest of International Law, Whiteman edition (1963), “Territory and Sovereignty of States,” “§ 8 Annexation,” page 1163 et. seq. recognized “Jordanian annexation of the West Bank” as a valid union between the two peoples. Likewise, the FRUS for 1950 (published in 1978) contained a declassified “Memorandum of Conversation”, between Mr. Stuart W. Rockwell of the Office of African and Near Eastern Affairs and Mr. Abdel Monem Rifai, Counselor, Jordan Legation in Washington, on June 5, 1950 which officially documented official US recognition of the union between Arab Palestine and Transjordan and the sovereignty of the new joint entity over the territory. See Foreign relations of the United States, 1950. The Near East, South Asia, and Africa, Volume V (1950), Page 921
        Truman had upgraded Israel’s recognition from de facto to de jure on the very same day that he extended de jure recognition to the new joint Kingdom of Jordan.

      • David Gerald Fincham
        August 6, 2015, 9:54 am

        The Area of Jurisdiction and Powers Ordinance of September 1948
        said that “Any law applying to the whole of the State of Israel shall be deemed to apply to the whole of the area including both the area of the State of Israel and any part of Palestine which the Minister of Defence has defined by proclamation as being held by the Defence Army of Israel.” By applying Israeli law in captured areas as soon as Israel had physical control those areas became de facto part of Israel – if you like, a creeping de facto annexation. (I call this the Israel Law Device). Maybe this is just semantics, but I cannot see this as a formal annexation because the latter would surely require a specification of the area to be annexed.

        The law Israel applied in some of the captured territory was Israel martial law. They regarded the territory as part of Israel, not territory belonging to someone else under military occupation according to the laws of war. So I do not see how the change from martial law to civil law makes any difference at all – the territory had already been annexed de facto – unless the legislation specifically said the armistice line was the boundary of the area affected. I am sorry I do not have time to look up the legislation (perhaps you can help by giving a link), but I very much doubt it mentions the armistice line specifically, because then Israel would have declared its borders, which it has always been reluctant to do, because that would place limits on its sovereignty.

      • Hostage
        August 6, 2015, 11:25 am

        Maybe this is just semantics, but I cannot see this as a formal annexation because the latter would surely require a specification of the area to be annexed.

        In September of 1948 there was still no Knesset or new body of municipal law, other than the initial proclamation by the Provisional Council that repealed the 1939 White paper, while retaining all of the other laws that were in effect in the territories during the mandate.

        Applying those Mandate era laws to areas that the Minister of Defense had “defined by proclamation as being held by the IDF” was a distinction without any difference undrr the Hague Rules. That was no longer the case by 1966, when the full-blown two-tiered system of law and the administrative pass regime, with checkpoints similar to the ones employed in the West Bank today, was finally abandoned. Like the 1967 case of the full application of its municipal laws to East Jerusalem or the 1981 act that applied Israeli “law, jurisdiction, and civil administration” to the Golan, these are all examples of de jure, rather than de facto or minor changes to the status of the territory concerned.

      • Hostage
        August 6, 2015, 10:38 am

        Wow! Thank you once again, Hostage, for sharing your immense knowledge with us. It will take me some time to digest it all.

        I’ll try and go back and supply some citations to help fill-in some of the details. I’ve commented in the past about The Inquiry Series of background briefing materials that the US State Department published for use by the US Delegation to the Versailles Peace Conference.

        According to one of the pamphlets, “Types of Restricted Sovereignty and of Colonial Autonomy” (GPO 1919), authored by Profs W. W. Willoughby, of Johns Hopkins University, and C.G. Fenwick, of Bryn Mawr College, the US government did not consider about two-thirds of the well-known countries in world to be independent, sovereign states. The list included countries like Serbia, Montenegro, and Romania that had been required to accept an international minority rights treaty undertaking (like the one in resolution 181(II)) in exchange for recognition of statehood and their territorial accessions in accordance with the terms of the Treaty of Berlin (1878). The full list of those countries is in a comment here: http://mondoweiss.net/2012/07/ny-ads-depicting-palestinian-dispossession-are-termed-anti-semitic-by-jewish-community#comment-473270

        By the time that the San Francisco Conference on the UN Organization was drafting the Charter, a similar study had concluded that many states had a questionable degree of sovereignty or independence under the classical meaning of those terms in legal textbooks of the era. The list included several of the founding members of the UN itself, so it was decided that the Charter should not include a definition of the term “state”. The war had left many countries without any recognized boundaries or governments – and some countries had no government at all. The P5 nonetheless wanted to include many of them in the invitations to the San Francisco Conference and that resulted in a great of “horse trading” and recriminations. The USA wanted to invite the representatives of the Italian Resistance who had captured and killed Mussolini and signed the Armistice Agreement that allowed Italy to switch sides during the war. The USSR and Greece were violently opposed to that suggestion and the Soviets refused to permit it, unless the USA dropped its objections to inviting the provisional communist government of Poland. The USA also objected to China’s insistence that Korea be included, and stated that if it was successful, the USA would insist on including Palestine, e.g. http://digicoll.library.wisc.edu/cgi-bin/FRUS/FRUS-idx?type=goto&id=FRUS.FRUS1945v01&isize=M&submit=Go+to+page&page=975

        FYI, everyone was in favor of overruling France’s objection to the inclusion of the mandated states of Syria and Lebanon. On November 29, 1941, Generals De Gaulle and Catroux issued a proclamation recognizing the sovereignty and independence of Syria and Lebanon “within the framework of the Mandate”. The proclamation said:

        “the independence and sovereignty of Syria and Lebanon will not affect the juridical situation as it results from the Mandate Act. Indeed, this situation could be changed only with the agreement of the Council of the League of Nations, with the consent of the Government of the United States, a signatory of the Franco-American Convention of April 4, 1924, and only after the conclusion between the French Government and the Syrian and Lebanese Governments of treaties duly ratified in accordance with the laws of the French Republic.

        http://digicoll.library.wisc.edu/cgi-bin/FRUS/FRUS-idx?type=goto&id=FRUS.FRUS1945v01&isize=M&submit=Go+to+page&page=975

        Nonetheless, during the UN Conference in San Francisco, the French armed forces were occupying Beirut and assaulting Damascus in an attempt to establish French protectorates in Syria and Lebanon. The governments of those two countries naturally objected because the government of France had proven itself incapable of protecting its own territory during the recent war. Syria and Lebanon were included as founding UN member states in 1945, and France finally ended its occupation on April 17, 1946. http://uca.edu/politicalscience/dadm-project/middle-eastnorth-africapersian-gulf-region/french-syria-1919-1946/

        Here is some more information on the wording and terminology used in the UN Charter:

        the formula suggested would make it possible to include Poland as an original member if it were not represented at San Francisco. [something the USA vehemently opposed] Representative Bloom suggested that the word “nations” rather than “states” be used so that there would be no confusion concerning the definition of a state. Dr. Bowman suggested that it might be necessary to include a definition of a state. Senator Vandenberg inquired how India would qualify if the term “state” were employed. Mr. Savage pointed out that India was a signatory to the Declaration by the United Nations and could qualify under that classification. The Secretary proposed and it was agreed that the provision for initial members should be limited to those states signatory to the Charter which would be listed in the Annex of the Charter and that the [objectionable] second sentence of paragraph 1 on initial members should be deleted. http://digicoll.library.wisc.edu/cgi-bin/FRUS/FRUS-idx?type=goto&id=FRUS.FRUS1945v01&isize=M&submit=Go+to+page&page=234

        CHAPTER III-MEMBERSHIP, PARAGRAPH 1
        Senator Connally said further that he wanted, himself, to raise a question about Chapter III, “Membership”, paragraph 1, especially the phrase “all peace-loving states”. He would like to have a definition of what is a state. He wondered, for example, whether India could be considered a state. It was true that this matter could be considered later. Mr. Bowman remarked that a memorandum on the status of various political units had been prepared, and Senator Connally said he would like very much to have a copy. — http://digicoll.library.wisc.edu/cgi-bin/FRUS/FRUS-idx?type=goto&id=FRUS.FRUS1945v01&isize=M&submit=Go+to+page&page=414

        As to the matter of sovereign equality and the integrity of states, the memorandum prepared by Mr. Gerig indicates how the relationships of certain states to others vary, and it is difficult to define their exact degree of sovereignty and independence. The number of these political units goes up to about 70. The first 45 or so can be considered fully independent, but the sovereignty of the remainder is qualified in some degree. We have to leave out of the Charter any attempt to define a state or to guarantee boundaries, but we should come as close as possible to maintaining the integrity and independence of political units by regulating their behavior and preventing aggression. … Representative Bloom said he was somewhat concerned about the matter of guaranteeing all the new boundaries that would be made at the end of this war. Mr. Bowman said we would have no difficulty with the enemy states, since they were not signing this document, but there might be troubles with many of our present allies.

        http://digicoll.library.wisc.edu/cgi-bin/FRUS/FRUS-idx?type=goto&id=FRUS.FRUS1945v01&isize=M&submit=Go+to+page&page=424

      • Hostage
        August 6, 2015, 12:18 pm

        I do not see how the change from martial law to civil law makes any difference at all – the territory had already been annexed de facto – unless the legislation specifically said the armistice line was the boundary of the area affected.

        I see the source of confusion. The Hague Rules in question applied to “The Exercise of Military Authority Over the Territory of a Hostile State”.

        Article 42. stipulates that “Territory is considered occupied when it is actually placed under the authority of the hostile army.” http://avalon.law.yale.edu/20th_century/hague04.asp#art42

        The fact that Israel placed some of its own territory under martial law as well, didn’t transform it into “occupied territory” for the purposes of IHL. That’s NOT the case with any territory that had been allocated to the Arab state which had been placed under the authority of the very same military government.

        Article 43. doesn’t prohibit the military commander from applying some new laws: “The authority of the legitimate power having in fact passed into the hands of the occupant, the latter shall take all the measures in his power to restore, and ensure, as far as possible, public order and safety, while respecting, unless absolutely prevented, the laws in force in the country.” http://avalon.law.yale.edu/20th_century/hague04.asp#art43

        But Article 45 absolutely prohibits the civilian authorities of the occupying power from ever stepping-in and taking over the direct administration from their military commander and demanding that the inhabitants pay allegiance or respect its domestic laws and jurisdiction: “It is forbidden to compel the inhabitants of occupied territory to swear allegiance to the hostile Power.” http://avalon.law.yale.edu/20th_century/hague04.asp#art45

        So the November 1966 decision to terminate the Military Government, without turning the territory back over to be governed by its own inhabitants, was a violation of the relevant rules of IHL and the relevant UN resolutions on the subject.

      • RoHa
        August 6, 2015, 6:50 pm

        “The fact that Israel placed some of its own territory under martial law as well **, ** didn’t transform it into “occupied territory” for the purposes of IHL. ”

        Ahem!

  9. Bornajoo
    August 1, 2015, 7:15 am

    Many thanks for this David Gerald Fincham

    In your response to Blownaway further up you said

    “If there was an enforceable Security Council Resolution, not vetoed by the USA, setting a deadline for a withdrawal, Palestine and Israel would be independent states. The American people can achieve that if they make clear to their politicians that they cannot be bought by AIPAC money, adn will only vote for politicians who support Palestinian independence. – See more at: http://mondoweiss.net/2015/07/independent-sovereign-palestine#sthash.Lkm1oxLg.dpuf

    Well that is the crux, the key to the whole thing isn’t it and always has been. The USA veto is what keeps the whole occupation enterprise in place. Without it the whole thing would inevitably have to unravel and israel would be forced to disengage and play by the rules

    So the real question is do you ever see a situation where this will happen? Do you believe (like some do but I don’t) that Obama may not use the veto in the very near future? And let’s look at who is likely to replace him. Will any of those front runners ever withhold the veto? Psychos Hillary and Jeb? It seems that if it doesn’t happen now it just won’t happen ever. Or are you more optimistic?

    • David Gerald Fincham
      August 1, 2015, 1:41 pm

      US governments have been saying for many years that the West Bank settlements are illegitimate. If there were a SC resolution demanding a halt to settlement building, I think it is just possible that Obama would not veto it.

      I am not an American, and so hesitate to comment on American politics, though I will say that Hillary and Jeb seem to be extraordinary choices. Whoever is President, they will of course be looking to a second term. If the mood of the American people tilts towards the Palestinian side, as it has been doing, albeit slowly, for a couple of years, eventually Presidential candidates will need to follow. I am not optimistic, but hopeful. If we think our cause is hopeless, we will certainly achieve nothing. If we hope, will be determined to play our part in realizing that hope.

      • Bornajoo
        August 1, 2015, 6:48 pm

        Thanks for your reply David

        My own opinion is that Obama will not withhold the veto if the Iran deal goes through as expected. However I believe that the very best thing that could possibly happen is if the Republicans, zionists and israel firsters actually do indeed defeat the deal. It will not lead to war or unilateral action against Iran by either the USA or israel (i won’t go into the reasons why here) . It will be a complete backfire on the Zionists and Republicans (and the Democrats who voted against) because I do very much believe that Obama will be much more inclined to withhold the veto at the next sc resolution about settlements and that will be the catalyst for the unravelling of the occupation

        I’m not sure if others think I’m crazy but a couple of other commenter agree with me. If the Zionists manage to gain enough votes to nullify Obama’s veto then it could be the best thing that could ever happen

        I actually see it as the last chance for a long while, not because I believe it’s hopeless but simply because of the USA political reality that will come after Obama has gone

    • bintbiba
      August 2, 2015, 8:52 am

      @ RoHa

      …….”What irrational bigots those Arabs are!”

      Thank you , RoHa , for your most concise and well informed input : The whole story ‘in a nutshell!’
      ( The best very long sentence I’ve read in a long time !)

      Signed: one of those irritating ‘irrational Arabs ‘ .

  10. CigarGod
    August 1, 2015, 10:13 am

    Very interesting read, with my cowboy coffee.

    Couldn’t help but feel a certain bit of sympathy for the brits. ..and the committee.
    There they were thinking to make a nice pot of proper coffee. Clean tap water, a trap to keep the grounds out, an adjustable flame, clean mugs, easy chairs.

    Instead, someone scoops pond water into an aluminum pot, drops a fistful of grounds into it, and plops it into a fire made of brush and wood debris from their wrecked easy chair.

    • just
      August 1, 2015, 10:21 am

      +1, CG!

      Thanks, I needed a good analogy this day, my friend.

      (Never mind that they shouldn’t have been making coffee in the first place…..)

      • CigarGod
        August 1, 2015, 10:31 am

        I feel your pain.
        If I was a WarGod, I’d be a terrible one, indeed. Very biblical. If I were just a man, the temptation to become one, would be overwhelming.

  11. hophmi
    August 1, 2015, 7:28 pm

    The best solution remains the two state solution. Any two state solution will include a de facto economic union of some kind, since Israel will be Palestine’s most natural trading partner. That won’t result in a political federation of the kind you discuss, but there will be many political relationships that will created as part of the two state solution that will bind the peoples together for mutual benefit.

    • David Gerald Fincham
      August 2, 2015, 3:09 am

      Hello Hophmi. You may be right. The next step has to be the end of occupation and an independent Palestine, and then the two states can start discussing their future relationships.

      • Mooser
        August 2, 2015, 11:32 am

        “Hello Hophmi. You may be right. The next step has to be the end of occupation and an independent Palestine, and then the two states can start discussing their future relationships.”

        This is wonderful! You and Hophmi go over there and work it out. If there is anybody who can solve the Palestinian’s problems, it’s a Canadian and a Zionist. Or maybe two Zionists.

      • David Gerald Fincham
        August 3, 2015, 3:55 am

        Mooser: I do not know any Canadians, but if the Canadian Government represents their views, they might well be Zionists. I do not think more Zionists in Israel would be helpful. Ultimately there will be a just a lasting peace when the two peoples decide that is what they want. (And by peoples I do not mean politicians). The problem with that, of course, is that Israeli citizens are immersed in Zionist propaganda from birth. It needs a very concerted counter-propaganda effort to inform them of the correct historical and legal facts. My suggestion is that the Mondoweiss staff and anti-Zionist Jewish commenters make a collective aliyah to Israel, run the website from there, with a Hebrew edition, and also try to make a big impact in the main-stream media in Israel.

      • just
        August 2, 2015, 2:08 pm

        Noam Sheizaf has a new article up:

        “No way to defeat Jewish terrorism without ending the occupation

        For the extreme right, violence against Palestinian civilians is not solely a result of racism — it is, first and foremost, a form of control.

        The vast majority of settlers are not violent, although different levels of violence toward the Palestinian population in the occupied territories have accompanied the settlement enterprise since its inception. These acts of violence are never an outlier, but as a direct consequence of the situation in the West Bank.

        The public turns a blind eye to this fact whenever these events happen. The responses to the murder of the 18-month-old baby Ali Dawabshe, are a sign that we will continue to ignore the bigger picture.

        The defining characteristic of the occupation is that it includes two civilian populations living alongside one another, which are subject to two different legal systems. The Palestinians live under a military regime, while every Israeli who lives or even visits the settlements “brings” the Israeli law with them, including all the legal protections she or he is granted. …”

        Much more @ http://972mag.com/no-way-to-defeat-jewish-terrorism-without-ending-the-occupation/109613/

        It may be that “the vast majority of settlers are not violent” of the sort that burned a family horribly and their baby to death. but their illegal presence on illegal land is itself a product of an original and ongoing violence. I think it’s disingenuous to say that the majority are not violent. The silence of the squatter community speaks volumes, and is thus supportive of the violence! Didn’t Noam witness the violence of the illegal squatters and their friends last week in Beit El and the accompanying chorus of incitement from government ministers? Is spitting on a Palestinian a form of “violence”? What about destroying their crops, poisoning their wells, killing their olive trees?

        He goes on wrt the “violent” military Occupation (my words):

        “When I served in the army, the IDF still defined its goals as ensuring the security of all the residents of the occupied territories. Today, however, it is made clear in briefings that the first goal is to protect Jews, and the idea that all Palestinians are enemies — even the “non-combatants” — is growing.

        This is an unfathomable situation. We go about our lives feeling like the law is protecting us. Most of the time this system works, and when it doesn’t we become angry, and justifiably so. But the Palestinian population is vulnerable to arbitrary harassment, whether by soldiers or settlers.

        While the Palestinian Authority spends 25 percent of its budget on security, its main role is to ensure the safety of Israelis, not Palestinians (this fact alone should have put an end to the age-old question of whether or not Israel still controls the Palestinians). A Palestinian policeman cannot arrest a settler, even if an attack was to take place before his own eyes. Palestinians are therefore dependent on the good will of the army, the police or the Shin Bet, and these bodies do not give much importance to protecting Palestinian life, aside for in a few exceptional cases.

        Add to this the fact that the majority of Palestinian civilians killed in the West Bank are killed by the army itself. In comparison to the IDF, the violence of the extreme right is still marginal. And IDF violence is treated far more leniently than price tag attacks. Even in the most extreme cases, where there is a clear suspicious of murder by Israeli soldiers, the system’s instinct is to cover it up. When an investigation is pursued, it is done long after the incident took place and with limited resources (+972 published a series of incidents detailing stories of soldiers who killed Palestinians and were let off the hook) Punishment is almost nonexistent, aside from a few special cases (which are entirely symbolic).

        In fact, the main reason the army investigates these cases is the need to enforce discipline on its troops, along with a desire to protect the military leadership from the International Criminal Court (a functional internal mechanism to investigate such crimes is one of the legal protections against these kinds of international criminal trials). …”

        Anyway, it’s worth a read. It’s absolutely clear that international protection must be given to the Palestinian people, along with international apologies and international condemnation of Israel’s brutality and Occupation. I believe that the illegal settlement enterprise should not only cease immediately, but the squatters need to be removed to TA, and away from the decent people of Palestine who have the only rightful and legal claim to the land.

      • just
        August 2, 2015, 2:39 pm

        One last thing, and I am sorry if this is too off- topic, but since Israeli Occupation and Palestinian independence are being discussed and an end to Occupation is necessary, then this would prove helpful:

        As most here know, the US has anti- terror legislation on the books. It’s been misused many times for purely political purposes, imho but that doesn’t mean that it can’t be used properly.

        I believe it’s Executive Order 13224 that’s pertinent here. It’s past time for the US to apply it to Israel. That paves the way for sanctions, too. It also makes it imperative to withhold the odious, hypocritical, and ubiquitous UNSC veto.

      • David Gerald Fincham
        August 3, 2015, 10:54 am

        If only…

        Executive Order 13224 applies to persons responsible for terrorism directed against the United States. I doubt a case against Netanyahu for terrorism against the US could be made.

      • Mooser
        August 3, 2015, 11:43 am

        “My suggestion is that the Mondoweiss staff and anti-Zionist Jewish commenters make a collective aliyah to Israel, run the website from there, with a Hebrew edition, and also try to make a big impact in the main-stream media in Israel.”

        That is the weirdest comment ever.

        Yeah, and they better make the Mondo offices out of asbestos.

      • just
        August 3, 2015, 1:24 pm

        I didn’t read it exclusively that way, David. Maybe I am only wishing…

        From wiki:

        “In general terms, the Order provides a means by which to disrupt the financial support network for terrorists and terrorist organizations by authorizing the U.S. Treasury, in consultation with other U.S. government agencies, to designate and block the assets of foreign individuals and entities that commit, or pose a significant risk of committing, acts of terrorism. The Order authorizes the U.S. Treasury to block the assets of individuals and entities that provide support, services, or assistance to, or otherwise associate with, terrorists and terrorist organizations designated under the Order, as well as their subsidiaries, front organizations, agents, and associates. In addition, it invokes a law that allows the President to bar transactions involving donations, food, clothing, and medicine and other articles “intended to be used to relieve human suffering,” when the President finds donations would “seriously impair his ability to deal with any national emergency,” are coerced or would endanger U.S. armed forces.”

        https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Executive_Order_13224

        Heck, they can finally use the Leahy Law, too:

        “The Leahy Law or Leahy amendment is a U.S. human rights law that prohibits the U.S. Department of State and Department of Defense from providing military assistance to foreign military units that violate human rights with impunity.[1]”

        https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Leahy_Law

        How did Sami Al-Arian and the Holy Land 5 get WRONGLY imprisoned? Does the US simply need to designate this group as Israeli Terrorist Squatters and then it can invoke existing legislation?

        Bornajoo posted a very relevant article this morning:

        “This just came in on Haaretz. …

        By Amos Harel and Chaim Levinson
        Published 10:07 03.08.15
        Investigators into Friday’s murder-by-arson of a Palestinian infant increasingly believe in the likelihood that the extreme rightist operatives responsible for the attack are affiliated with the same ideological group that has torched mosques, churches and Palestinian homes over the past year.”

        – See more at: http://mondoweiss.net/recent-comments#sthash.NnWCx3HH.dpuf

      • Hostage
        August 6, 2015, 1:18 am

        If only…

        Executive Order 13224 applies to persons responsible for terrorism directed against the United States. … I didn’t read it exclusively that way, David. Maybe I am only wishing

        Just to be clear, the “entities” cited in that EO included the state governments listed in the 9/11 AUMF (Afghanistan, Iraq, etc.) So nothing in theory would prevent it from being used against a Mossad front company and its dancing employees too. The EO also cited the individuals and entities listed in the US Treasury Department Specially Designated Nationals List. Everything with a remote connection to Rabbi Kahane was already on that years before the Bush EO. Kahane’s grandson is the suspected leader of the current round of terror attacks and the Israeli Knesset is brimming to the full with the late Rabbi’s disciples. More to the point, the President has all the authority he needs under the War Crimes Act, the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act, the Export Administration Act, the Arms Export Control Act, and the Foreign Assistance Act to restrict U.S. foreign assistance; implement a ban on defense exports and sales; institute controls over exports of dual use items; and impose miscellaneous financial and criminal sanctions against Israel, American settlers, and the 28 billion dollar per year Jewish public charity industry in this country that directly or indirectly subsidizes the illegal settlement enterprise.

        FYI, the US has never included Palestine in its list of State Sponsors of Terror, because it would first have to admit that such a state exists. It uses the Specially Designated Nationals List and the statute that prohibits direct or indirect material support for those designated on it in cases, like the Holy Land Charities. Nonetheless, Kahanists openly operate charities in this country and none of them have ever spent a day in jail for doing so, despite petitions from organizations. including J Street, demanding as much. See “J Street Calls for Treasury Investigation Into Settlement Charities” link to web.archive.org

      • RoHa
        August 6, 2015, 5:34 am

        “a Mossad front company and its dancing employees too.”

        You mean Mossad is just a front for folk dancers?

        It’s worse than I thought!

    • talknic
      August 4, 2015, 11:04 pm

      @ hophmi “The best solution remains the two state solution:”

      Impossible while Israel remains in military control of any Palestinian territory. A state cannot declare independence whilst under occupation. There is no actual legal, moral or logical reason why Israel cannot withdraw from all non-Israeli territories immediately, as required by law!

  12. zaid
    August 1, 2015, 11:53 pm

    Good article

    But i have a question

    “At the time of the Plan, the Jewish population within the area of the Jewish State was 498k (k=1000), the Arab population (including Bedouin) 497k, giving a total of 995k. In the Arab State there were 10k Jews and 725k Arabs, giving a total of 735k. In the City of Jerusalem there were 100k Jews and 105k Arabs, a total of 205k. Overall then, there were in Palestine 608k Jews and 1327k Arabs, a grand total of 1935k persons.”

    Usually the number cited for the jewish state is 407K arab vs 498K jews.

    which one is the true one and what is the source.

    • David Gerald Fincham
      August 2, 2015, 2:30 am

      Hello Zaid. The origin of the numbers is, I believe, the UNSCOP report, though I took them from a secondary source.

      The discrepancy you point out is from the 90k Bedouin, as I mention. These are listed as a separate item in the original. Since they are mostly in the Negev, which goes to the Jewish state in the Plan, it seems sensible to include them with the Arabs of the Jewish State.

      • Sibiriak
        August 8, 2015, 12:27 pm

        @David Gerald Fincham

        See: UN Ad Hoc Committee on the Palestinian Question– Report of Sub-Committee 2
        11 November 1947

        http://www.un.org/ga/search/view_doc.asp?symbol=A/AC.14/32

        These [U.N.S.C.O.P. report] estimates must, however, be corrected in light of the information furnished to the Sub-Committee by the representative of the United Kingdom regarding the Bedouin population. According to this statement, 22,000 Bedouins “may be taken as normally resident in the areas allocated to the Arab state […]” and the balance of 105,000 as resident in the proposed Jewish state.

        It will thus be seen that the proposed Jewish State will contain a total population of 1,008,800, consisting of 509,780 Arabs and 499,020 Jews.

        In other words, at the outset, the, Arabs will have a majority in the proposed Jewish State.

        (emphasis added)

      • Hostage
        August 9, 2015, 1:31 pm

        In other words, at the outset, the, Arabs will have a majority in the proposed Jewish State.

        Yes, I’ve cited that British note on the Bedouin population many times here in the past. It not only explained that the Bedouins had been settled on the land in the Beersheba district for many generations, it noted that they had nearly as much land under cereal grain production alone as the Jewish community’s total land holdings combined.

        It illustrates that the way in which the Bedouins were ignored as a relevant factor by the UNSCOP and Ad Hoc partition committees was no accident. Omitting them from the plan for the future organs of government, simply because they were a nomadic minority, seems almost unconscionable in light of the attention the Allies were giving to Nazi atrocities committed against the Roma and Jews for allegedly being “stateless” Non-Germans, who were present in the land, but were excluded from the Germanic polity. The RAF aerial survey establishes beyond any doubt that the so-called “unrecognized Bedouin communities” in the Negev today were already established there, long before the State of Israel ever came into existence, and were simply ignored or displaced due to the subsequent armed conflicts.

        It’s very important to read Ben Gurion’s and Moshe Shertok’s testimonies to the UN Commission and Ad Hoc Committee. Ben Gurion literally asked the UN for permission to institute Jewish Agency rule over the Arabs of Palestine as the sole administrator of a UN Trusteeship that he was willing to impose upon the Arabs by armed force if necessary. That was his “maximal” demand. He expressed a willingness to accept a Jewish state in an adequate amount of the territory as a “compromise”. Remember that he, and the other members of the Jewish Agency Executive had just been caught red handed coordinating Jewish underground terror operations. The Zionist Inner Circle had been forced to issue a insincere apology in order to get Shertok and other Agency officials released from jail. Everyone on the UNSCOP Committee realized that they had to offer an arbitrated settlement or face the almost certain possibility of open civil war.
        http://unispal.un.org/UNISPAL.NSF/0/06728C052629426085256E8B007092DF

        Ben Gurion biographer, Shabtai Teveth said that after 1936 he had decided that armed force was the only way to get what he wanted from the Arabs – and Ben Gurion himself was in charge of the so-called “defense” portfolio of the Jewish Agency from that time on. His attitude was reflected in comments made by Jewish Agency Political Department officials to the US State Department too: “I have noted in discussions with Zionist spokesmen visiting Cairo recently a marked hardening in their attitude (possibly owing in part to increased confidence resulting from alleged large-scale clandestine arming by Jews in Palestine) which in several cases has taken the form of frankly admitting that it is idle to continue to talk of “negotiations” with Arabs, in balance obvious that any solution satisfactory to Zionists would have to be “imposed” on Arabs by threat or use of force and this latter the only realistic line of action to adopt. — Kirk, the FRUS, 1942 link to digicoll.library.wisc.edu

        Moshe Shertok, who was in charge of Arab relations as head of the Political Department of the Jewish Agency, falsely asserted that the Balfour Declaration was part of the “law of the UN Charter” as a result of the inclusion of Article 80. I’ve already explained why that was utterly false. In October of 1947, after the UNSCOP report had been adopted, he was still objecting to the exercise of Palestinian national sovereignty in any part of Palestine and said they would just have to go to one of the many other Arab states if they wanted that sort of thing. He also added that the Jewish Agency did not view the Economic Union of the Arab and Jewish states as being essential. http://unispal.un.org/unispal.nsf/9a798adbf322aff38525617b006d88d7/571b9a10c26738c7852569350055f202/$FILE/gapal20.pdf

        That was the same underhanded tactic Rabbi Silver was trying to get away with, when he told the Security Council that the establishment of the Jewish State didn’t depend on the implementation of the remainder of the plan. The Jews essentially demanded that the UN carve them out a State at the expense of someone, or anyone else. And they’ve been giving the international community the bill for international relief of the Palestinians ever since. The new “Foreign Minister” Shertok, who previously claimed there would be no problem accommodating several million Jewish immigrants in the Negev, suddenly started singing a different tune after independence. When UN and US officials advised that the Palestinian refugees had no shelter or sources of food and water and that many would die from exposure in the coming winter months, unless they were allowed to return to their homes and traditional sources of sustenance, they reported that Shertok got a “swelled head” and told them that Israel would never be willing to allow the Palestinian refugees to return to their homes, because “their space” was needed to accommodate Zionist Jews from Arab countries who had expressed an interest in coming to Palestine. link to digicoll.library.wisc.edu

        You must understand that the Jews were only being given authority over such a vast territory that they neither purchased nor inhabited on the condition that they would
        (1) grant the Arab population equal rights;
        (2) only expropriate Arab land or property for public (not private) use, and only after payment of legal compensation;
        (3) join an economic union which would guarantee international oversight and management of all the infrastructure vital to the two new states; and
        (4) agree to the use of a common currency issued by the union and share tax and customs revenues needed to make the rump Arab state economically viable.

        Here’s a link to the press release from the Chairman of the Ad Hoc Sub-Committee 1 that was working on the plan of partition. It explains that they had received the same factual information on the Bedouin population, but did not have time to address it, because they wanted to complete their report for the Committee of the whole on time. http://unispal.un.org/unispal.nsf/9a798adbf322aff38525617b006d88d7/623e08e773cf0f8a85256a6f004df759/$FILE/gapal53.pdf

        If you check the subsequent November press releases from Sub-committee 1 and the UN Yearbook for 1947, you’ll discover that the Ad Hoc Committee had to discuss several alterations to dramatically enlarge the boundaries of the Jewish State and the time tables that had been proposed by the UNSCOP, precisely because the Jewish Agency had actually rejected both the UNSCOP majority and minority proposals. Zionist propaganda deliberately conceals that fact and conveys the false impression that the Jewish Agency “accepted the plan”. In fact, “recommending acceptance” to Vaad Leumi, “subject to further negotiations over necessary territorial and constitutional modifications” was actually a counter offer that automatically rejected the proposed UN plan. It required an acceptance of further talks, on the part of the UN Ad Hoc Committee, under the terms of the Jewish Agency counter offer, or there simply wouldn’t have been any agreement on any bases going forward by either the Jews or the Arabs. In fact, the statements by Rabbi Silver illustrate that there never was any agreement on boundaries, equal human rights under a constitution, economic interdependence, or the internationalization of Jerusalem.

        So, the issue of the theoretical Arab majority population in the proposed Jewish State was never really addressed and several thousand more Arabs and their lands were subsequently added to the boundaries of the proposed Jewish state by the UN in the areas around the Haifa strip, the airport at Lod, and Safed. All of the Sub-Committee press releases and minutes are available here: http://unispal.un.org/unispal.nsf/vDateDoc?OpenView&Start=1&Count=150&Expand=69.2#69.2

        We know for a fact that Ben Gurion and Shetok had no intention of restraining the Hagana from engaging in acts of terror, like the bombing of the Semiramis Hotel in Jerusalem shortly after the adoption of the UN Plan. The verrbatim minutes of the People’s Council and the 1st Knesset debates reveal that he had insisted on leaving the question of borders open to developments in the armed conflict and that he had personally authorized the Jerusalem uprising in cables to the Hagana commanders, which instructed them to give the Irgun and Lehi freedom to operate there however they saw fit.

      • RoHa
        August 10, 2015, 4:32 am

        This is vital material. It should be an MW article in itself.

        With this information we have proof that the Zionists rejected the UN proposals, and had no intention of ever dealing justly with the Palestinians. Their intention was always to take, by hook or by crook, the land from the people. And very crooked it was.

        When MW gets round to setting up a “Complete Answers to Hasbara” page, three quarters of the material will be from your submissions.

    • tree
      August 2, 2015, 4:17 am

      From the UN Partition Plan document itself:

      The figures given for the distribution of the settled population in the two proposed States, as estimated on the basis of official figures up to the end of 1946, are approximately as follows: 166/

      Jews
      Arabs and others
      total
      The Jewish State
      498,000
      407,000
      905,000
      The Arab State
      10,000
      725,000
      735,000
      City of Jerusalem
      100,000
      105,000
      205,000

      In addition there will be in the Jewish State about 90,000 Bedouins, cultivators and stock owners who seek grazing further afield in dry seasons.

      http://domino.un.org/unispal.nsf/9a798adbf322aff38525617b006d88d7/07175de9fa2de563852568d3006e10f3?OpenDocument

      The UN and British considered the Bedouins as nomads, but it was, and is, more accurate to call them pastoralists, and their land was mostly within the UN Partition Plan’s borders for the Jewish State.

      • zaid
        August 2, 2015, 1:11 pm

        Thanx David and Tree.

      • Sibiriak
        August 4, 2015, 8:32 am

        The Jewish State 498,000 407,000 905,000

        Those statistics (the exact numbers don’t matter; other counts actually showed a slight Arab majority, iirc) point straight to the complete and tragic unrealism of the UN Partition plan.

        Consistently, from its very inception, the Zionist movement sought the creation of a Jewish-dominated state, and the absolutely essential, indispensable basis for such a state was a Jewish super-majority. A bare majority would in no way suffice.

        Simha Flapan “The Birth of Israel Myths and Realities” (p.32):

        Speaking before the Histadrut Executive on December 3 [1947], four days after the UN vote, Ben-Gurion declared that “the borders are bad from a military and political point of view.” At the same meeting he also explained that

        “in the area allotted to the Jewish state there are not more than 520,000 Jews and about 350,000 non-Jews, mostly Arabs (apart from the Jews of Jerusalem, who will also be citizens of the state). Together with the Jews of Jerusalem, the total population of the Jewish state, at the time of its establishment, will be about a million people, almost 40 percent non-Jews. Such a composition does not provide a stable basis for a Jewish state. This fact must be seen in all its clarity and acuteness. Such a composition does not even give us absolute assurance that control will remain in the hands of the Jewish majority.” (emphasis added)

        If Ben-Gurion considered a state with 40% non-Jews to be unacceptable, you can imagine how disastrous a nearly 50% non-Jewish state would be in the Zionist view.

        Ilan Pappe spells out the implications of this reality:

        The Partition Resolution incorporated the most fertile land in the proposed Jewish state as well as almost all the Jewish urban and rural space in Palestine. But it also included 400 (out of more than 1000) Palestinian villages within the designated Jewish state. In hindsight, it may be argued in UNSCOP’s defence that Resolution 181 was based on the assumption that the two new political entities would peacefully coexist and therefore not much attention needed to be paid to balances of demography and geography.

        If this were the case, as some UNSCOP members were to argue later, then they were guilty of totally misreading Zionism and grossly underestimating its ambitions

        Again in the words of Walid Khalidi, Resolution 181 was ‘a hasty act of granting half of Palestine to an ideological movement that declared openly already in the 1930s its wish to de-Arabise Palestine.’ And thus Resolution 181’s most immoral aspect is that it included no mechanism to prevent the ethnic cleansing of Palestine.

        Let us look more closely at the final map that the UN proposed in November 1947 (see Map 5). Palestine was actually to be divided into three parts. On forty-two per cent of the land, 818,000 Palestinians were to have a state that included 10,000 Jews, while the state for the Jews was to stretch over almost fifty-six per cent of the land which 499,000 Jews were to share with 438,000 Palestinians. The third part was a small enclave around the city of Jerusalem which was to be internationally governed and whose population of 200,000 was equally divided between Palestinians and Jews.

        The almost equal demographic balance within the allocated Jewish state was such that, had the map actually been implemented, it would have created a political nightmare for the Zionist leadership: Zionism would never have attained any of its principal goals. As Simcha Flapan, one of the first Israeli Jews to challenge the conventional Zionist version of the 1948 events, put it, had the Arabs or the Palestinians decided to go along with the Partition Resolution, the Jewish leadership would have been sure to reject the map UNSCOP offered them.

        Actually, the UN map was an assured recipe for the tragedy that began to unfold the day after Resolution 181 was adopted. As theoreticians of ethnic cleansing acknowledged later, where an ideology of exclusivity is adopted in a highly charged ethnic reality, there can be only one result: ethnic cleansing.

        By drawing the map as they did, the UN members who voted in favour of the Partition Resolution contributed directly to the crime that was about to take place.

        (emphasis added)

        Ilan Pappe, “The Ethnic Cleansing of Palestine”

      • David Gerald Fincham
        August 4, 2015, 10:46 am

        I think the authors you quote overstate the objections to the Plan. It was designed for an evolving situation. The Jewish state was expected to receive large numbers of immigrants from Europe. Also, there was to be a period in which the minority community in each state could voluntarily change citizenship and move to the other state. If the Plan had been accepted by the Arabs, and implemented as envisaged, the Jewish state would soon have had a much larger Jewish majority, and there would not have been a need for ethnic cleansing. When the Arabs rejected the Plan, and the Zionists decided to go ahead with declaring an independent state, it was clear that the Arabs within the area of that state would be extremely hostile, and that the project would fail unless the Arabs were expelled.

      • Sibiriak
        August 4, 2015, 11:18 am

        David Gerald Fincham : I think the authors you quote overstate the objections to the Plan. It was designed for an evolving situation. The Jewish state was expected to receive large numbers of immigrants from Europe.
        ——————

        Evidence please. From what I have read, the evidence shows that in fact the Zionist leadership did NOT anticipate sufficiently rapid and numerous Jewish immigration to counterbalance the Arab majority or near-majority expected in the UN proposed Jewish state. (I’ll try to pull up the quotes shortly.)
        ———————-

        Also, there was to be a period in which the minority community in each state could voluntarily change citizenship and move to the other state.

        It seems to me utterly unrealistic to think that hundreds of thousands of Palestinians would voluntarily uproot themselves from their towns and villages so that Israel would be left with a super-majority of Jews. The Palestinian ties to the land were strong and deep.

        ————————
        If the Plan had been accepted by the Arabs

        But there was zero chance of that, and the UN commitee must have known it.

        ….implemented as envisaged, the Jewish state would soon have had a much larger Jewish majority

        Again, evidence please. How much larger and how soon? And what about the meantime. Would the Arab majority or near-majority have had full democratic rights before then? If they did, the politics of the country would have been gridlocked. Ben-Gurion wasn’t a fool; he knew full well that a territory with 40% non-Jews, let alone 50% or more, would simply not do for a Jewish state as envisioned by Zionism.

      • David Gerald Fincham
        August 4, 2015, 4:20 pm

        Sibiriak, sorry, I can only answer you briefly.

        1. I was not talking about the anticipations of the Zionists, but of UNSCOP.
        2. I cannot give evidence of what might have happened.
        3. At Lausanne in 1949 Ben-Gurion said that if Gaza was given to Israel, citizenship would be given to all its inhabitants PLUS all the refugees there. He was clearly no longer worried that Israel would not have a large enough Jewish majority.

      • tree
        August 4, 2015, 6:10 pm

        3. At Lausanne in 1949 Ben-Gurion said that if Gaza was given to Israel, citizenship would be given to all its inhabitants PLUS all the refugees there. He was clearly no longer worried that Israel would not have a large enough Jewish majority.

        Two points: Even if one believed Ben-Gurion in this instance, and there is no rational reason for such a belief, in 1949 the Palestinian “citizens” of Israel had only temporary citizenship, and were subject to expulsion at any time. (I’d suggest reading Shira Robinson’s “Citizen Strangers” for details) and these Israeli “citizens” were subject to martial law and restrictions of their movement within their own country for the next 19 years, until well after a large Jewish majority had been obtained through immigration . “Citizenship” for Palestinians in pre-1967 Israel meant little to nothing, so another 200,000 or so(estimates of Gaza’s population in 1949) added to the 150,000 Palestinians extant after the ethnic cleansing created no serious threat to the million Jews in Israel by the end of 1949.

        Point two: Ben Gurion and all the Zionist leadership also publicly proclaimed for decades that they had no desire to dominate the indigenous Palestinians, and yet we all know from history that was an egregious lie. I wouldn’t put any weight on anything Ben Gurion claimed in public. The number of lies he spoke were prodigious, even for a politician. He was almost pathological in his lying.

        A further example of this was the armistice negotiation between Jordan and Israel over the Little Triangle area in 1949. Jordan agreed to turn sovereignty of the area to Israel in return for Israel not removing the Palestinians who lived in the 3 villages there. Of course, after the agreement was signed, Israel expelled the villagers anyway and destroyed their homes and villages. Any of Ben Gurion’s claims in this regard are meaningless.

        Point 3 (ala the Monty Python skit), Israel was still expelling Palestinians from Israel up until 1956. The entire population of Majdal were expelled in 1950, and the area was repopulated with Jews, becoming the town of Sderot.

      • Hostage
        August 10, 2015, 8:28 am

        And thus Resolution 181’s most immoral aspect is that it included no mechanism to prevent the ethnic cleansing of Palestine.

        Not at all. The General Assembly explicitly instructed the Security Council to treat any attempt to alter the plan by force as a threat to international peace and security and “the mechanism” was contained in Chapter 7 of the UN Charter.

        The UN Security Council used a coalition of the willing (including yours truly) and a Chapter 7 resolution to reestablish the final territorial settlement between Iraq and Kuwait on the basis of Iraq’s “acceptance” of “The Agreed Minutes Between the State of Kuwait and the Republic of Iraq Regarding the Restoration of Friendly Relations, Recognition and Related Matters, dated 4 October 1963”. That instrument had been deposited with the UN Treaty Organization when Kuwait joined the UN. See E. Lauterpacht, et al “The Kuwait Crisis: Basic Documents” http://books.google.com/books?id=5xVSkGtcT5YC&lpg=PA82&pg=PA56#v=onepage&q&f=false

        Bush Sr. refused Sadaam’s offer to condition Iraq’s withdrawal on Israel’s simultaneous withdrawal from the occupied Arab territories. But he promised to address the issue after the Gulf War. I’ve never understood why it’s so much less important to enforce the UN Armistice Agreements or the UN Plan For the Future Government of Palestine.

        I’ve repeatedly cited declassified documents which establish beyond any doubt that the members of the Western countries on the Security Council knew that the Jews were waging a war of aggression and territorial aggrandizement by no later than the Spring of 1948. They also knew that the Jews would come running to the Security Council if and when the neighboring Arab States ever came to the defense of their beleaguered brethren in force claiming that they were the victims. But the members of the Council failed to perform their basic duties under the terms of the Charter and deliberately chose to take no action at all to prevent that from happening. In fact, the Soviets (thru their Czech satellite) and the French government were secretly supplying arms to the Hagana and the Irgun all along. The latter even supplied the Irgun weapons cargo for the infamous Altalena Affair in the midst of the UN arms embargo. See the interview with Yitzhak Shamir published in the Times of Israel. http://www.timesofisrael.com/fire-in-the-hole-blasting-the-altalena/

        We know from the minutes of the People’s Council that Ben Gurion left the question of borders open to developments, but said he would have no choice other than to abide by the UN resolution if it was enforced. The UN Security Council simply refused to take action on the General Assembly resolution. At the same time, Dean Rusk’s USUN delegation memos indicate that Truman had already ruled out any military intervention against the Jews in March of 1948, e.g. http://avalon.law.yale.edu/20th_century/decad167.asp

        The French, British, Belgian, and US delegations knew perfectly well after US Consul Watson’s reports of massacres in March and April, that the Jewish militias were engaged in ethnic cleansing and that they were the aggressors. The Zionists had copies of everything he dispatched in real time, and I’ve always assumed that he was assassinated by a Lehi sniper, just like Count Bernadotte and Lord Moyne. See this Times of Israel interview with Shamir http://www.timesofisrael.com/yitzhak-shamir-why-we-killed-lord-moyne/

        Under Secretary Rusk’s only worry was that there would be domestic pressure from within the US to attack the Arabs! The only US reaction was to wait another month and let the slaughter continue while hoping that Transjordan and Israel might conclude a unofficial modus vivendi and partition Palestine between themselves on a de facto basis:

        Memorandum by the Director of the Office of United Nations Affairs (Rusk) to the Under Secretary of State (Lovett)
        SECRET [WASHINGTON,] May 4, 1948:

        Military operations after May 15 will probably be undertaken by
        the Haganah with the assistance of the Jewish terrorist organizations Irgun and Stern. Copies of Consul General Wasson’s excellent reports, as set forth in his telegram 530 of May 3, are attached, and provide the estimate of the British General Officer Commanding as to the probable course of military events after British withdrawal on May 15.

        If these predictions come true. we shall find ourselves in the UN
        confronted by a very anomalous situation. The Jews will be the actual aggressors against the Arabs. However, the Jews will claim that they are merely defending the boundaries of a state which were traced by the UN and approved, at least in principle, by two-thirds of the UN membership. The question which will confront the Security Council in scarcely ten days’ time will be whether Jewish armed attack on Arab communities in Palestine is legitimate or whether it constitutes such a threat to international peace and security as to call for coercive measures by the Security Council. The situation may be made more difficult and less clear-cut if, as is probable, Arab armies from outside Palestine cross the frontier to aid their disorganized and demoralized brethren who will be the objects of Jewish attack. In the event of such Arab outside aid the Jews will come running to the Security Council with the claim that their state is the object of armed aggression and will use every means to obscure the fact that it is their own armed aggression against the Arabs inside Palestine which is the cause of Arab counter-attack.

        There will be a decided effort, given this eventuality, that the United States will be called upon by elements inside this country to support Security Council action against the Arab states. To take such action would seem to me to be morally indefensible while, from the aspect of our relations with the Middle East and of our broad security aspects in that region, it would be almost fatal to pit forces of the United States and possibly Russia against the governments of the Arab world.

        Given this almost intolerable situation, the wisest course of action might be for the United States and Great Britain, with the assistance of France, to undertake immediate diplomatic action seeking to work out a modus vivendi between Abdullah of Transjordan and the Jewish Agency. This modus vivendi would call for, in effect, a de facto partition of Palestine along the lines traced by Sir Arthur Creech Jones in his remark to Ambassador Parodi on May 2, as indicated on Page 3 of USUN’s telegram [549], May 2, which has been drawn to your attention.” – Full Stop

        By July, the League of Arab States were alarmed by Israel’s large scale arms acquisitions and resulting strengthened position during the cease fire and they resumed hostilities. The UN Security Council finally declared the situation a threat to international peace and security, but the US prevented any adverse sanctions against Israel.

        The internal Rusk memo was published in the Foreign relations of the United States, 1948. The Near East, South Asia, and Africa , Volume V, Part 2, page 848. Analysis of the memo is contained in “The British Empire in the Middle East, 1945-1951″, William Roger Louis, Oxford University Press, 1984, ISBN: 0198229607, page 545; Zionism and the Palestinians, Simha Flapan, Croom Helm, 1979, ISBN: 0856644994, Page 336; and Fallen pillars: U.S. policy towards Palestine and Israel since 1945, Donald Neff, 2nd Edition, Institute for Palestine Studies, 1995, ISBN: 0887282598, page 65.

        Here is a follow-up cable:

        “The United States Representative at the United Nations (Austin) to the Secretary of State
        SECRET US URGENT NEW YORK, May 9, 1948-6: 43 p. m.:
        Parodi called meeting of British, Belgian, American, French representatives last night to discuss situation regarding truce and possible action which SC may be called to take following May 15. Hare and I attended. Parodi said time fast running out and essential to make up minds now regarding certain problems.
        He said that as of May 15 we would be faced by declarations two states of Palestine coupled with entrance of Abdullah. Regarding latter two ideas are current. The first is that if Abdullah moved beyond own frontier it might constitute an”act of aggression”. The second idea was that if he entered on invitation of Arab population of Palestine his act might not constitute aggression. Parodi said he was inclined to second theory and thought conclusion to that effect would avoid endless argument.

        – Foreign relations of the United States, 1948. The Near East, South Asia, and Africa, page 946

        We know from both the FRUS and the published Minutes of the People’s Council meeting on the eve of Independence that Secretary Marshall and (then) Under Secretary Lovett were fed up. They told Jewish Agency Political Department Chief and “Foreign Minister” Moshe Shertok that “We shall not allow the Jews to conduct a war that we do not want with our dollars.” The US threatened to shutdown the United Jewish Appeal and publish the incriminating evidence the US government had obtained on the organization. Shertok acknowledged that they could back-up their threats. The record also revealed that Ben Gurion refused a suggestion from Shertok that they address urgent concerns from New York and announce that the first order of business on the new government’s agenda should be “The return of the Arab population of the Jewish State to their homes”.See The Palestine Yearbook of International Law 1987-1988, Martinus Nijhoff Publishers (1997), page 270

      • Hostage
        August 10, 2015, 8:29 am

        The Jewish state was expected to receive large numbers of immigrants from Europe … If the Plan had been accepted by the Arabs, and implemented as envisaged, the Jewish state would soon have had a much larger Jewish majority, and there would not have been a need for ethnic cleansing.

        The Longterm UK/US Plan For Palestine that I cited above explained that both countries were strongly opposed to Arab majority rule. They didn’t want the Jews to be proportionately represented, they wanted them to have “parity”. That’s why they included so many Arabs in the so-called Jewish state. But Ben Gurion shot himself in the foot on that account when he okayed resumption of terror operations, like the Semiramis Hotel bombing, in early January of 1948 – just before he was to secure the port he needed to facilitate that wave of added Jewish immigration.

        Remember that the UN plan created two new non-sovereign states effective 29 November 1947 and started the transition to their independence at once. The resolution instructed the British to evacuate their armed forces from a Port and turn it, and enough of the surrounding area “adequate to provide facilities for a substantial immigration” over to the authorities of the Jewish state no later than 1 February 1948. The UN Palestine Commission went ahead and selected Haifa for evacuation, but the British administration advised that they would not turn it over to the Jewish terror underground and give then complete freedom to import arms. So, Ben Gurion was faced with the prospect of the formation of a provisional government with an existing Arab majority and no stop gap source of Jewish immigrant voters. In April, the Security Council called the General Assembly back into session to reconsider the plan and Ben Gurion got desperate. He unilaterally declared the Jewish Agency Executive and Vaad Leumi the Provisional Council with zero Arabs and no permission from the members of the UN Palestine Commission, who were responsible for establishing the new governments. The Commission scrupulously avoided recognizing the “so-called” government’s legitimacy. http://unispal.un.org/UNISPAL.NSF/0/692D02510B8160C185256FC70057E4B8

        During the 20th Sitting of the first Knesset Ben Gurion explained that annexing the Triangle and Hebron would add 500,000 to 800,000 Arabs to the population of the State of Israel. He noted that the Arabs would outnumber the Jews and that they would have to be given the vote. The Herut MKs led by Begin replied that there were millions of Jews elsewhere in the world that would be willing to immigrate. Ben Gurion replied that the new Arab majority run Knesset would adopt laws in the meantime that would prevent them from ever coming.

        So, if there hadn’t been any initial ethnic cleansing, that would have already happened. The first order of business for the Palestinian Arab majority in the greatly enlarged “Jewish state” created by the Ad Hoc Committee would have been to take control of the Constituent Assembly. See “The Armistice Agreements with the Arab States”, in Netanel Lorch (ed), Major Knesset Debates 1948-1981, Vol. 2, JCPA/University of America Press, 1993, pages 514-515 (pdf file page 94 of 186) http://www.jcpa.org/text/KnessetDebatesVol2.pdf

      • Sibiriak
        August 10, 2015, 9:39 am

        Hostage: [Ilan Pappe:]And thus Resolution 181’s most immoral aspect is that it included no mechanism to prevent the ethnic cleansing of Palestine. [emphasis added]

        Not at all. The General Assembly explicitly instructed the Security Council to treat any attempt to alter the plan by force as a threat to international peace and security and “the mechanism” was contained in Chapter 7 of the UN Charter.

        ——————–
        But what “mechanism”, i.e. actual force, was there to be on the ground and ready for action to prevent ethnic cleansing?

        ——————–
        The UN Security Council used a coalition of the willing (including yours truly) and a Chapter 7 resolution to reestablish the final territorial settlement between Iraq and Kuwait.

        How could a “coalition of the willing” assembled after the fact have prevented the ethnic cleansing?

      • Hostage
        August 10, 2015, 2:39 pm

        But what “mechanism”, i.e. actual force, was there to be on the ground and ready for action to prevent ethnic cleansing?

        That begs the question. When the occasion required it, the USA discovered that the General Assembly could be called into Emergency Session to authorize collective measures under Article 14, including the use of armed force in Korea, without regard to the the size of the actual force available in the country.

        There had been an international mandatory regime in place in Palestine with an armed force of 80,000 or more imposing its own policies through what it described itself as “rule by machine gun” for 25 years when the UNSCOP Majority and Minority Plans were first approved and published on August 31, 1947. http://unispal.un.org/UNISPAL.NSF/0/12E4593CCD1EDDF185256A76006E1BD8

        The UN Security Council simply needed to augment the British forces. The British government refused to unilaterally implement any UN plan that wasn’t acceptable to both sides.

        You have to remember that the UK created the can of worms and then dumped it in the UN’s lap. After the London Conference, the British government simply gave the Zionists and Palestinians an ultimatum. It informed them that if they failed to come to a peaceful agreement on their own, their dispute would be submitted to binding international arbitration by the UN. So all of the parties knew this was not going to be just another mere recommendation. See the FRUS, The Near East and Africa, 1947, page 1037 http://digicoll.library.wisc.edu/cgi-bin/FRUS/FRUS-idx?type=goto&id=FRUS.FRUS1947v05&isize=M&submit=Go+to+page&page=1037

        How could a “coalition of the willing” assembled after the fact have prevented the ethnic cleansing?

        You seem to be forgetting that there was no alternative to making an offer of some kind, since everyone concerned (without exception) unanimously agreed that the existing regime had become intolerable and had to be terminated.

        There was going to be war anyway, without regard to the outcome of any UN deliberations. There was already a calculated terror campaign going on to drive the British administration out of the country and establish Jewish rule in all of Palestine, including Transjordan, through the use of force and covert agreements. The General Assembly was just trying to come up with a peaceful compromise to head-off some of those foreseeable consequences by creating two non-sovereign states joined in an economic union.

        When the Zionists were denied a State of their own by the mandatory administration, they adopted the Biltmore resolutions which proposed a) the institution of a Jewish military force fighting under its own flag and under the high command of the United Nations; and b) that the Zionist organization would present its demands for a Jewish State in all of Palestine to the new international forum. See the Aide Memoire from the British Embassy to the Departmrent of State in the Foreign relations of the United States diplomatic papers, 1942, The Near East and Africa, page 551 http://digicoll.library.wisc.edu/cgi-bin/FRUS/FRUS-idx?type=goto&id=FRUS.FRUS1942v04&isize=M&submit=Go+to+page&page=551

        You should already be aware from Ilan Pappé’s description of the contents of the letter Ben Gurion sent to his son in 1937 (published here at Mondoweiss) that he planned to colonize any empty territory allocated to the Arab state and Transjordan, with or without the consent of those governments. The “liberal” socialist Zionists were no less adamant about that, than their Revisionist brethren. Here’s a pamphlet published by the Zionist Organization of America during the period of the Peel and Woodhead Commissions, which explained that the British had artificially confined Jewish settlement to the area west of the Jordan river. It said that “Trans-Jordan can and will be opened for Jewish settlement”. See “Possibilities of Palestine” starting at the bottom of the page http://babel.hathitrust.org/cgi/pt?id=mdp.39015026648769;view=1up;seq=9 in “Zionism, its aims and achievements.”

        Zionist historians agree that, in August of 1937, Ben Gurion made it clear to the members of the 20th Zionist Congress that he was NOT choosing between a Jewish State in Western Palestine and Jewish claims to all of Eretz Israel on both sides of the Jordan river:

        As a historian of Zionism, Gideon, you must know Ben-Gurion’s words in the 20th Zionist Congress in 1937 (this time in Zurich not in Basel): ‘If I had been faced with the question: a Jewish state in the west of the land of Israel (note the emphasis of the ‘west of the land of Israel’ meaning there is also a ‘east of the land of Israel’) in return to giving up on our historical right to the entire land of Israel I would have postponed the (establishment) of the state’. And he added (as far as I know, to applause from many of the delegates): ‘No Jew is entitled to give up the right of the Jewish nation to the land. It is not in the authority of any Jew or of any Jewish body; it is not even in the authority of the entire nation alive today to give up any part of the land’.

        – Israel Harel, Jewish Quarterly, Winter 2007, Number 208, link to jewishquarterly.org

        Ben Gurion had already publicly advised the British Commission that the Zionists would never accept partition, since they viewed all of the territory of the Mandate as a land that had once been theirs and would be theirs once again:

        The Jewish people have always regarded, and will continue to regard Palestine as a whole, as a single country which is theirs in a national sense and will become theirs once again. No Jew will accept partition as a just and rightful solution.

        The proposal of the Royal Commission to set up a Jewish State in a restricted area is to put a drastic limit to the possibilities of a Jewish return, and to condemn the rest of the country to stagnation and desolation.
        Anything may be imposed on a defenceless Jewish people by the superior forces of the British Empire, just as the Jewish people had in the past to submit to the destruction of their country by the Roman legions, and in our own times to their persecution by Nazi Germany and other countries.
        But they can never regard the proposal as something which is right and just in itself.

        — See “The Jews”, David Ben Gurion, The Palestine Post, Thursday, July 15, 1937, Page:5 link to jpress.nli.org.il

        Contrary to the hasbara narrative, he initiated a low level conflict in the late 1930s. That and his political machinations never stopped, even during the WWII years. See “The Political History of Palestine under British Administration, “Memorandum by His Britannic Majesty’s Government presented in 1947 to the United Nations Special Committee on Palestine” A/AC.14/8, 2 October 1947 for a list of attacks carried out during the war. Also note that the British described their own plan for partition and economic union as one for two “non-sovereign states”. The UN was just repackaging that idea and sweetening the offer.

        The Anglo-American Committee of Inquiry admitted they were only making stop gap recommendations for what would come next, under the auspices of a formal UN Trusteeship. Their plan for a unitary state was almost identical to the one for partition and economic union. They called their autonomous states “provinces” to avoid issues with right of transit, but they intended for each province to eventually control immigration.

        In 1946, the British were unsuccessful in disentangling Transjordan from the mandate. When the Emirate applied for membership in the United Nations, the Jewish Agency launched a successful political and legal battle through various governments, including the USA to prevent its application from being accepted. I’ve commented in the past about the fact that the President of the Security Council said that he viewed Transjordan as part of a joint mandate that had not yet been legally terminated. He cited a memo written by the US Secretary of State Burns urging that nothing be done to alter its status until the UN could take up the Question of Palestine as a whole. For the role played by the Jewish Agency and the US Congress in that scheme –See Foreign relations of the United States, 1946. General; the United Nations Volume I, Page 411 link to digicoll.library.wisc.edu and “Mandate is Indivisible Jewish Agency Objects to Severance of T.-J.”, Palestine Post Apr 9, 1946, page 3 http://www.jpress.nli.org.il/Olive/APA/NLI/SharedView.Article.aspx?parm=VHEVwL3dlJELy9L8zKvysgWV75iUMY14IcECy%2BvDWp%2Fy4ZJBNB%2BOkLjbo4GG6DpuYw%3D%3D&mode=image&href=PLS%2F1946%2F04%2F09&page=3

        The Zionists were fighting like dogs on a proverbial gut wagon over pieces of Transjordan’s territory right up until the 29 November deadline. Chaim Weizmann personally lobbied President Truman and said it was imperative that the Transjordanian port of Aqaba be included in the Jewish state. A few days before the November 29, 1947 decision on partition, U.S. Secretary of State Marshall noted frequent references had been made by the other members of the Ad Hoc Committee on Palestine regarding the desirability of the Jewish State having both the Negev and the Port of Aqaba. See Foreign relations of the United States, 1947. The Near East and Africa Volume V, page 1255
        Truman even telephoned the US UN delegation and told them he supported Weizmann’s position on Aqaba. The only reason the US Ambassador didn’t vote for inclusion and abstained, was because he wasn’t certain about the meaning of the President’s instructions (page 1271).
        Abdullah’s government highlighted that situation to the Security Council:

        I wish to draw your attention to the fact that the government of the United States of America, the author of the proposition of addressing the questions about which you informed me, has not yet recognized the government of the Hashemite Kingdom of Transjordan, despite the fact that for two years it has been in a position to meet all the required conditions for such recognition; yet the government of the United States of America recognized the so-called Jewish government within a few hours, although the factors for this recognition were lacking.
        I also would like to point out that the Security Council refused more than once to recommend to the General Assembly the admission of the Transjordan government to the United Nations.
        Therefore, my government does not feel that there is room for reply to the questions addressed to it.

        link to unispal.un.org

  13. ritzl
    August 2, 2015, 12:23 pm

    Great article, DGF. Thanks.

    You asked…

    Any equitable, long-term solution to this problem will have to go through a universal-suffrage, one-state phase first.

    Jewish-dominated Israel will never give up meaningful sovereignty over 30-40% of its water supply (i.e. the West Bank). Not ever. That supersedes all principled legal and logical best-case arguments, imho. It precludes a sovereign Palestine as a next step.

    Perhaps I’m overly cynical about legal leverage (there doesn’t seem to be any) effecting any outcome in Palestine. To me, the path seems to be annexation (de fato or de jure)→universal suffrage (supported by BDS and/or ICC developments)→political balance/consensus/common cause→voted split (or not), as dictated by political forces “between the river and the sea,” with the caveat that mass expulsion of 4M Palestinians would spur even the stridently unconcerned international community into some sort of action.

    • David Gerald Fincham
      August 3, 2015, 10:51 am

      ritzl: “Any equitable, long-term solution to this problem will have to go through a universal-suffrage, one-state phase first.”

      There is less chance of this than a two-state first stage. The reason is that Israel will not give citizenship to non-Jewish West Bank residents, because this would result in Israel ceasing to be a Jewish state. Nor would those West Bank residents be willing to give up their Palestinian citizenship for Israeli citizenship. Nor would the State of Palestine be willing to be absorbed into the State of Israel.

      The continued occupation and colonization by Israel of land outside its borders has already been determined to violate international law. If the Security Council would accept its duty to enforce the law, the occupation would end and there would be two independent states.

      • ritzl
        August 3, 2015, 2:57 pm

        Yeah, DGF. That’s the problem. The contention is about two things that can “never’ happen. Two existential threats. Yet one of them MUST happen as they are comprehensive and mutually-exclusive descriptors of a binary condition . Therefore BOTH can not NOT happen.

        So I go with water as the greater (than politics) existential threat to Israel as the driver. IOW they have to have the water and can deal with the politics later, but they can’t fiddle with the politics if it risks losing the water.

        Reasonable people can disagree, of course. :)

        Great discussion.

      • tree
        August 4, 2015, 5:24 pm

        If the Security Council would accept its duty to enforce the law, the occupation would end and there would be two independent states.

        And if pigs had wings…

        or as the Arabic saying goes,

        Bukra fil mishmish

      • ritzl
        August 6, 2015, 4:04 pm

        Sorry to take so long to respond, Sibiriak.

        On water and certainty: I view Israel’s water needs as the inescapable, physical, zero-sum driver of this conflict. One drop of water for Palestinians means one less drop for Israel.

        In 2011-12, Lake Kinneret was within a few meters of its “black line,” its point of no return (cf. Aral Sea). http://www.ynetnews.com/articles/0,7340,L-4272265,00.html The 200MCM (+/-) of Palestinian water Israel forcibly removes from the WB was the only thing keeping it above that level. That same Palestinian water is now being used to replenish the lake, post drought. Israel is on the razor’s edge of a physically existential water catastrophe, including Palestinian water.

        Israel shows zero ability to solve its own water problems within its own finite supply. That’s not uncommon, but what is uncommon is that unlike, say, California, Israel uses/believes it needs to use/can use/is allowed to use violent occupation to solve its problem. I think that’s an internal recognition of the zero-sum centrality of Palestinian water to Israel’s existence. Simply put, if Palestinians use just 5% more of their water, Lake Kinneret goes away and northern Israel and the “blooming” Negev turn into their natural arid state. That will “never” be risked.

        I contrast that to the artificial, hysterically self-proclaimed “existential” threat of equal rights. This is a constructed non zero-sum threat. It is politically manageable with thousands of permutations available to declare victory for the retention of Israel’s Jewish character – Israel’s hyperventilation notwithstanding.

        On Gaza, equal rights, and tyranny of a crazed majority: I’ve written before that I believe Gaza will be the Palestinian state. Nobody wants it as part of anything – including the PA. That seems to me to be the path of least resistance in all this, and on the upside would give Palestinians a potentially resource-rich place to pour their considerable and pent-up abilities and energies to make magic. Separating Gaza makes WB annexation more likely for the reasons you list.

        But then, the annexation of the WB is a done deal. Halper’s analysis is flawed. Just today they announced demolitions in the E1 corridor. Completion of the E1 corridor precludes a viable Palestinian state in the WB. Netanyahu himself has said repeatedly the Jordan Valley is non-negotiable. Area C as part of Palestine? A long shot completely dependent on a long list of future “ifs.” Jerusalem???…

        It’s not about what number of non-Jews is acceptable to Israelis anymore. It’s about how long it will take for the world to cop to the fact that 2.5M people have been encircled and are being held without rights. That is explicitly the RSA precedent and Apartheid illegality, so maybe not long at all.

        WRT majority domination… maybe. But as tree said, BDS and the ICC results can be used to propel equal rights gains as well as de-occupation. Hostage has said that the PLO is where the Palestinian ICC status resides, so those developments are independent of statehood/annexation. They can be leveraged in a domestic political fight for rights.

        The Joint List electoral success and whether their energy attracts Jewish-Israelis interested in solving problems is also a wild card in navigating a rights-based way forward for Israel given the Apartheid reality it has created for itself. Irreversible Apartheid reality, imo.

        I tried to address your points. Not sure I did.

        Best.

    • Sibiriak
      August 4, 2015, 7:11 am

      ritzl: Jewish-dominated Israel will never give up meaningful sovereignty over 30-40% of its water supply (i.e. the West Bank). Not ever.
      ———————
      How can you be so certain? The question is: what kind of compromises would Israel be willing to make if subject to politically isolating, economically crushing, boycotts/divestment/sanctions ?

      And not only BDS, but BDS combined with ICC/ICJ legal action, overwhelming global governmental pressure, and exploding resistance by Palestinians in the OT.

      Under those completely novel circumstances, how can you say for sure that Israel would not be compelled to accept a settlement based on the “international two-state consensus”?

      Water rights would be an integral element of such a settlement, as exemplified by the Geneva Initiative, for example:

      Among the more interesting points is the recognition by both parties that they both possess rights to water in water resources that traverse their political boundaries. This includes the Mountain aquifer and its various sub-basins, the Coastal Aquifer, the Jordan River, and the Dead Sea. This point has been a particularly important issue for the Palestinians who strive for nationhood and the respect due a sovereign people.

      A related and equally crucial issue for the Palestinians is the acknowledgment in the accord by Israel that a “just and rightful” allocation of water between the two peoples requires a “re-division” of shared water resources in favor of the Palestinians. The Palestinians have long claimed that Israel has taken more than its fair share and ignored the Palestinians’ rights to the water in the region.

      In response, Israel’s concerns about the contamination of its water supply are partly addressed in the provisions related to both parties’ obligation to void causing significant transboundary harm via shared waters. The definition afforded to the term “harm” in this provision is rather broad in scope and encompasses detrimental effects not only to people and property, but also to the natural environment.

      Israel has voiced considerable misgivings about the Palestinian’s ability to manage wastewater and other pollutants in the highlands of the West Bank (part of the presumptive Palestinian State). This region is the recharge area for the Mountain Aquifer and any inflow of pollutants (which is already occurring to some extent) threatens Israel’s water supply in the lower reaches of the aquifer below Israel proper.

      One other noteworthy provision in the Water Annex is the creation of a Joint Water Commission, which in its initial stage, would have some authority to adjust water allocations between the two states in response to “significant hydrologic and climatic changes.”

      What this may mean in practice remains to be seen, however, the creation of a joint commission composed of three representatives from each side with a voting “neutral chairman of another nationality” suggests a serious desire to develop a fair mechanism for cooperative water management and allocation.

      http://www.internationalwaterlaw.org/blog/2009/09/16/geneva-initiative-releases-water-annex-to-model-israel-palestinian-peace-agreement/

      http://www.geneva-accord.org/images/PDF/water.pdf

      If massive pressure can force Israel to accept the international two-state consensus in principle, then water rights issues can be dealt with one way or another in the context of a comprehensive, internationally-backed agreement.

      • David Gerald Fincham
        August 4, 2015, 9:56 am

        Sibiriak: I agree with you on that. Those who keep saying the ‘two-state solution is dead’ are essentially asking the Palestinians to surrender and hope for the best.

      • diasp0ra
        August 4, 2015, 11:29 am

        @David

        And how is that different from what is going on right now?

        Are you familiar with the story of the woman who was cooking stones?

        “Umar knocked at the gate, and addressing the lady of the house Umar enquired why were the children crying. She said that they were crying because they were hungry. “And what are you cooking”, asked Umar. The lady said that in the kettle there was only water and stones. That was to while away the children that food was being cooked for them. She hoped that exhausted the children would go to sleep. ”

        She hoped that the illusion of the stones, which the children mistook for food, would be enough to pass the night by and that they would fall asleep before having to confront the fact that there was no food.

        This is exactly the people who still insist on the two state solution. The stones have been boiling for decades now and nothing has come of it, but more and more hunger and less and less stones. The children would have died eventually from hunger, you can only boil the stones for so long.

        Facts on the ground have changed too much, even ideologically people are more open to one state now than they ever have been. A two state solution means that refugees are left out in the cold, that’s not something I’m willing to give up on.

      • David Gerald Fincham
        August 4, 2015, 4:09 pm

        Diasp0ra: Ultimately, the two-state solution will not work. That was already clear at the time of the partition plan, which is why the Plan did not actually create two independent states. That is what the article is all about.

        The argument is about what we mean by a one-state solution, and how do we get there. Suppose you are right, and Israel annexes area C? What do you envisage happening then? What possible political process can turn that into a one-state solution? I have never seen any one-state advocate discuss that question.

        Since the two states already exist as legal entities, any final solution can only be achieved by way of a two-state solution (unless one of the states suddenly decides to dissolve itself – no chance).

        There is a very clear process that CAN produce an interim two-state solution: the enforcement of international law by the Security Council. Israel has to end the occupation of the West Bank and the blockade of Gaza, and Palestine has to gain its independence. Then the two States will be be able to work together as equals to determine their future relationship.

      • tree
        August 4, 2015, 5:11 pm

        Those who keep saying the ‘two-state solution is dead’ are essentially asking the Palestinians to surrender and hope for the best.

        Accepting the ‘two-state solution” in 1988 was a surrender itself. Palestinians never wanted partition in the first place and only agreed to it as a concession to Israel in hopes of getting at least a bit of autonomy in a truncated Palestine: it was unfair from the beginning and It got Palestinians nothing but more oppression, more land theft, more settlements, and more futile negotiations.

        The problem is that the Israeli Jewish government will not accept Palestinians as equal beings. This means that they will not accept any two state solution that will give Palestinians even the minimum they need to function as an independent state. The Israeli desired result is a small series of disconnected Palestinian reservations and that is what the “two-state solution” will look like while “negotiations” go on into eternity.

        A single state, which the Palestinians wanted in the first place, negates the need for all those drawn-out negotiations over water rights and borders and security and the like, which always manage to work in Israel’s favor. Neither two states nor one will work without vigorous outside pressure. One state solves more problems over the long term than does two.

      • David Gerald Fincham
        August 4, 2015, 5:28 pm

        Tree: we do not know what Israel will accept if put under pressure, because it has never been put under pressure. The US veto has ensured that.

        The question the ‘one-staters’ never answer is this: what political process will take us from where we are now to a one-state solution?

      • MHughes976
        August 4, 2015, 5:31 pm

        I agree absolutely with tree that no Israeli government will accept Palestinians as equal beings, in that the whole idea of Zionism is exclusive rights for Jewish people in the whole of the Holy Land. That is to say that all varieties of Zionism prohibit all solutions except the departure of the Palestinians for ever.
        If things changed to the point where there was an agreement signed and genuinely accepted one evening, with green-line Israel as one party, genuinely accepting the right of Palestinians to exist in Palestine, there would the next morning be two states. But it would not be the last word, since the screaming unfairness of the partition could not defended once the Palestinian right had been agreed. That is why it will not be agreed for a long time and why the road ahead is so long, dark, tedious and stony – for the Palestinians horrifically painful, for likes of us in the West dismaying, maddening and sad.

      • tree
        August 4, 2015, 6:41 pm

        The question the ‘one-staters’ never answer is this: what political process will take us from where we are now to a one-state solution?

        The same outside pressure that, if it ever materializes, could force two states could also force one state with equal rights for all. People are continually comparing Israel to South Africa, rightly I believe. But then many of them opt for pressing for a Bantustan alongside Israel instead of rejecting the Bantustan option as they did in South Africa, and pressing for equal rights for all in one country. Two states requires lengthy and most likely unbalanced negotiations about borders and water rights and security and air rights and a host of other issues. One state requires none of these, only a commitment to equal rights for all. Granted the Israeli government has no interest in equal rights, but neither did the white South African government, until they were forced into it by sanctions. If Israel is similar to Apartheid South Africa, then what is so impossible about using sanctions to reach the same result as was reached in South Africa? The obstacle to equality in one state is exactly the same obstacle that has prevented and will continue to prevent any justice for Palestinians via a pie in the sky two state solution that will either end in disconnected Indian Reservations or Bantustans, or turn the West Bank into Gaza, “independent” on paper but still under the deadly control of Israel and likely militarily devastated.

      • David Gerald Fincham
        August 5, 2015, 4:40 am

        Tree:

        The South Africa situation was totally different, because South Africa already was one state, in which a minority community dominated a majority community.

        Former Palestine was partitioned in 1948: Israel was created and recognized as an independent sovereign state. It is constituted as a Jewish and democratic state, totally committed to maintaining a Jewish majority. No amount of pressure could force it to absorb the West Bank and Gaza with their populations, and there is no legal basis for such action. Nor could the residents of Gaza and the West Bank be forced to accept Israeli sovereignty.

        To go from today’s situation, where the two states exist as legal entities, directly to one state
        means that one of those states will have to disappear: and it wouldn’t be Israel.

      • just
        August 4, 2015, 6:48 pm

        “The same outside pressure that, if it ever materializes, could force two states could also force one state with equal rights for all.”

        I believe that is absolutely true! Thanks for your comments, tree.

      • tree
        August 6, 2015, 3:38 pm

        David,

        The South Africa situation was totally different, because South Africa already was one state, in which a minority community dominated a majority community.

        It wasn’t as different as you think.South Africa was created out of three states and the continual dispossession of the indigenous African population was formalized in the early 20th century with the Native Lands Act, which eventually lead to the “Homelands” , or bantustans as they were called, which existed from the late 1950’s onward, well before the international campaign against apartheid South Africa began. In apartheid South Africa they claimed that these bantustans were separate independent states, when they were in fact completely dependent, economically and politically, on South Africa. Israel has managed to slice up the Palestinian West Bank in similar ways by inserting its Jewish population into the area while forcibly removing the Palestinians from their land. This was in fact Ariel Sharon’s concept of the “Palestinian State” and Israel has gone a long way towards achieving that goal. From Akiva Eldar in 2003:

        During his visit two weeks ago to Israel, former Italian prime minister Massimo D’Alema hosted a small group of Israelis – public figures and former diplomats – to a dinner at a Jerusalem hotel.
        The conversation quickly turned to the conciliatory interviews Prime Minister Ariel Sharon gave to the press for their Independence Day editions. One of the Israelis, of the type for whom it’s second nature, no matter who is in government, to explain and defend Israeli policy, expressed full confidence in Sharon’s peace rhetoric. He said the prime minister understands the solution to the conflict is the establishment of a Palestinian state beside Israel.
        The former premier from the Italian left said that three or four years ago he had a long conversation with Sharon, who was in Rome for a brief visit. According to D’Alema, Sharon explained at length that the Bantustan model was the most appropriate solution to the conflict.
        The defender of Israel quickly protested. “Surely that was your personal interpretation of what Sharon said.”
        D’Alema didn’t give in. “No, sir, that is not interpretation. That is a precise quotation of your prime minister.”
        Supplementary evidence backing D’Alema’s story can be found in an expensively produced brochure prepared for Tourism Minister Benny Elon, who is promoting a two-state solution – Israel and Jordan. Under the title “The Road to War: a tiny protectorate, overpopulated, carved up and demilitarized,” the Moledet Party leader presents “the map of the Palestinian state, according to Sharon’s proposal.” Sharon’s map is surprisingly similar to the plan for protectorates in South Africa in the early 1960s. Even the number of cantons is the same – 10 in the West Bank (and one more in Gaza). Dr. Alon Liel, a former Israeli ambassador to South Africa, notes that the South Africans only managed to create four of their 10 planned Bantustans.
        ….

        An Israeli who spent many years nurturing Israeli relations with Africa was also at the dinner hosted by the Italian prime minister. He said that whenever he happened to encounter Sharon, he would be interrogated at length about the history of the protectorates and their structures.

        http://www.haaretz.com/beta/people-and-politics-sharon-s-bantustans-are-far-from-copenhagen-s-hope-1.10275

        See also this:

        “Visualizing Palestine in a two state solution: A state of Palestine or a Palestinian Bantustan?”

        https://www.middleeastmonitor.com/articles/middle-east/6972-visualizing-palestine-in-a-two-state-solution-a-state-of-palestine-or-a-palestinian-bantustan

        Your point:No amount of pressure could force it to absorb the West Bank and Gaza with their populations, and there is no legal basis for such action. Nor could the residents of Gaza and the West Bank be forced to accept Israeli sovereignty.

        Two points in response.1-You yourself have stated that we don’t know what Israel would do if pressured, since it has never been pressured. Now you are claiming otherwise. As for the Israelis, some right wing Israeli politicians have actually stated that annexation is desirable, even if it means giving the Palestinian inhabitants the vote. The annexation itself is actually desired by many, if not most, rightwing Israelis. The pressure will be needed to ensure full citizenship guaranties, but that is a cause that will be easy to get international individuals and states to rally around.

        2-The residents of Gaza and the West Bank are already forced to accept Israeli sovereignty and have been for nearly 50 years. Full citizenship would allow West Bank and Gaza individuals to reconnect with their Palestinian Israeli brethren. And it would give them a stake in the overall economy and political arena that would be totally lacking in the bantustans that Israel has created. Regardless of whether it is claimed to be a “state” or not at some future point, it is highly likely that the “Palestinian State” will be totally dependent on Israel, and thus no more than a bantustan. Advocating for “two states” could very well end up formalizing and recognizing this bantustan, something that the international community refused to do with regard to South Africa, and something that will not give the Palestinians what they need and want to live freely on their land. I wouldn’t be surprised if, as some Palestinians here and elsewhere have averred, one state with equality becomes the preferred solution for most Palestinians in the future. It was in fact their preferred solution in 1947, and it was only after the Israeli invasion of the West Bank and Gaza, and continual international pressure that they acceded to the two-state “solution”, which has proved to be a sham for the last 25 plus years.

        To go from today’s situation, where the two states exist as legal entities, directly to one state means that one of those states will have to disappear: and it wouldn’t be Israel.

        But two independent viable states do NOT exist today. In actuality we have one state in control of the entire area, with two separate laws and rights enforced according to ethnicity- apartheid. Palestine has been disappearing for nearly a century, thanks to Israel and the early Zionists. The name of a country is not more important than the quality of life that could be obtained for the Palestinians, both in Israel and in the OPT, through equality.

      • Sibiriak
        August 7, 2015, 12:10 am

        Tree: It wasn’t as different as you think.
        ——————————–
        You are not addressing some absolutely critical points:

        1)The international community of states, the UN, international courts and the Palestinian leadership has fully backed the partition of Palestine into two states. The international community, courts and the black African leadership did NOT back the partition of South African into multiple states.

        2) In Israel/Palestine, the apartheid system COULD be eliminated in a multi-state framework, and that is the international consensus. In South Africa, the apartheid system could NOT be eliminated via a multi-state framework; it was not an option.
        ——————————-

        Israel has managed to slice up the Palestinian West Bank in similar ways by inserting its Jewish population into the area while forcibly removing the Palestinians from their land.

        True, but the question is how is that to be remedied? The world and the Palestinian leadership, including the overwhelming majority of Palestinian civil society organizations backing BDS, support two-states (in contrast to the South African situation). The fact that Israel resists the creation of a Palestinian state consensus is exactly the problem that external pressure must overcome.
        ———————

        You yourself [DGF] have stated that we don’t know what Israel would do if pressured, since it has never been pressured. Now you are claiming otherwise

        Look at it this way. We don’t know for sure if Israel could be forced to into accepting the international consensus for a two-state solution.

        We don’t know for sure if Israel could be forced into accepting a single democratic state with an Arab majority (fusing Israel, Gaza and the West Bank).

        What we do know is:

        1) Forcing Jewish Israelis to accept minority status in a single Arab majority state would be vastly more difficult than forcing them to accept a two-state solution which leaves the Israeli Jewish majority intact.

        2)The world community, the UN, the ICJ, the Palestinian leadership, an overwhelming portion of Palestinian civil society supports two-states.

        3) The world community et al, is therefore very likely to put pressure on Israel to accept the international two-state consensus; they are extremely unlikely to put pressure on Israel to fuse with Gaza and the West Bank.

        4) Israel will always have the international two-state consensus as a fall back position. (The South African white minority never had such an internationally acceptable multi-state option.)

        5) Given that Israel will have that choice, we can say with a very high degree of certainty that Israel will choose to give up some portion of the settlements and sign onto a deal acceptable to the world community and the PLO long before they ever consider destroying the Zionist dream entirely and dissolving Israel into an Arab-majority state.

      • David Gerald Fincham
        August 7, 2015, 10:10 am

        Sibiriak: thank you for that well-argued response.

      • Hostage
        August 7, 2015, 7:58 pm

        David: The South Africa situation was totally different, because South Africa already was one state, in which a minority community dominated a majority community.

        Tree: It wasn’t as different as you think.
        ——————————–
        Sibiriak: You are not addressing some absolutely critical points:

        1)The international community of states, the UN, international courts and the Palestinian leadership has fully backed the partition of Palestine into two states. The international community, courts and the black African leadership did NOT back the partition of South African into multiple states.

        No, Taxi is absolutely correct. See the discussion in my separate comment below about the PLO (Palestine), the ANC (South Africa), and SWAPO (Namibia).

        Let’s remember that Israel is already under a Chapter 7 obligation to end its belligerent claims. withdraw its armed forces, and to terminate hostilities under the auspices of Security Council resolutions 62, 73, and 242 read in connection with 338. The persons who had been displaced as a result of the wars have a right, under both customary and conventional international laws, to return to their countries of origin and access their land and properties there if they wish to do so, without regard to any on-going negotiations for a final settlement between the feuding states. See for example the recent European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) judgment in the CASE OF SARGSYAN v. AZERBAIJAN and the CASE OF CHIRAGOV AND OTHERS v. ARMENIA
        * http://hudoc.echr.coe.int/eng?i=001-155662
        * http://hudoc.echr.coe.int/eng?i=001-155353

        The Court reaffirmed the inalienable right of refugees who have abandoned their homes and countries due to armed conflicts to access their land and property once again after hostilities have ceased and to be paid compensation for use without regard to on-going or insincere negotiations over “final peace” agreements – and the affirmative obligation of the state governments concerned under both the rules of customary International Humanitarian Law and the EC Human Rights Convention to facilitate them in doing so.

        Likewise the ECHR has previously ruled that settlers in Northern Cyprus have to return plundered property that they have acquired to the rightful owner and pay compensation without regard to the conclusion of a final settlement. Here is an article which explained that a British couple were being ordered by the regular Courts in Cyprus to demolish their home, return the land to the rightful owner, and pay rent until they settled the matter. They were arguing that the Cypriot Court had no jurisdiction in the northern area of Cyprus. So, the original Greek owner had gone to the UK Courts to have the judgment enforced and put a lien on their assets:
        link to dailymail.co.uk
        Here is the Opinion and Judgment from the Grand Chamber of the European Court instructing the British Court of Appeals that it must respect the default judgment of the Court in Cyprus in favor of Meletis Apostolides in the matter of Meletis Apostolides v David Charles Orams and Linda Elizabeth Orams.
        link to curia.europa.eu The ECHR has also enter a 90 million Euro non-pecuniary judgment against Turkey for invading Northern Cyprus without respect to the pending UN negotiated final settlement.

        The UN, the EC, and the US government have each warned individuals and transnational corporations against doing business in regions undergoing armed conflicts or purchasing property in one that may have been acquired as a result of unlawful transactions. I’ve commented in the past that the US RICO statutes offer both criminal and civil remedies (treble damages) to Palestinians, whose property has been plundered by American settlers or corporations.

        A change in sovereignty does not effect personal or communal property rights under customary, conventional, or US law. For example, the U.S. Supreme Court has recognized a fundamental principle of the law of nations “[t]hat when a territory is acquired by treaty, cession, or even conquest, the rights of the inhabitants to property, are respected and sacred.” Rhode Island v. Massachusetts, 37 U.S. (12 Pet.) 657, 749 (1838). In United States v. Percheman 32 U.S. 51 (1832) with regard to the continuing rights of the inhabitants to citizenship, inheritances, residency, and private property ownership the Court said: “The modern usage of nations, which has become law, would be violated; that sense of justice and of right which is acknowledged and felt by the whole civilized world would be outraged if private property should be generally confiscated and private rights annulled on a change in the sovereignty of the country. The people change their allegiance, their relation to their ancient sovereign is dissolved, but their relations to each other and their rights of property remain undisturbed.”

        Those notions, that the laws of nations must protect humanity, rather than the rights of states, actually started when Edmund Burke complained about the plunder and deportation of the Jews of St. Eustatius: “Their abandoned state and their defenceless situation call most forcibly for the protection of civilized nations. If Dutchmen are injured and attacked the Dutch have a nation a government and armies to redress or avenge their cause. If Britons are injured Britons have armies and laws the laws of nations (or at least they once had the laws of nations) to fly to for protection and justice But the Jews have no such power and no such friend to depend on. Humanity then must become their protector and ally.” – https://books.google.com/books?id=0nk9AAAAcAAJ&dq=&pg=PA251#v=onepage&q&f=false

        Zionist propaganda strangely insists that means that every one of the thousands of ethnic groups existing today needs to have it’s own “nation state,” e.g http://www.jewishmag.com/107mag/jewsofeustatius/jewsofeustatius.htm

        But the Nuremberg Principles, based upon the Hague conventions of 1899 and 1907, explicitly protected “towns,” “villages,” “places:,”any civilian population,” “family rights and honor,” and “private property” against the crimes of pillage, excessive expropriation, deportations, or displacements. Those crimes did not become in anyway obscure between 1945 and 1948.

        The UN Security Council reminded the parties in the 1950s that the original armistice agreements terminated the state of “hostilities” and that they should immediately begin repatriating refugees that had been vetted by the UN’s Armistice or the General Assembly’s Palestine Conciliation Commissions. See S/RES/89(1950), http://www.un.org/ga/search/view_doc.asp?symbol=S/RES/89%281950%29 and S/RES/95(1951) http://www.un.org/ga/search/view_doc.asp?symbol=S/RES/95%281951%29

      • Hostage
        August 7, 2015, 9:05 pm

        David: The South Africa situation was totally different, because South Africa already was one state, in which a minority community dominated a majority community.

        Tree: It wasn’t as different as you think.
        ——————————–
        Sibiriak: You are not addressing some absolutely critical points:

        1)The international community of states, the UN, international courts and the Palestinian leadership has fully backed the partition of Palestine into two states. The international community, courts and the black African leadership did NOT back the partition of South African into multiple states.

        One of the first UN Conventions that called for the establishment of an international penal tribunal was the Apartheid Convention. It would be an odd result if the government of a “Bantustan” victim “state” did not have sufficient legal standing to file a criminal complaint on its own behalf.

        I think some of us here are operating under the very mistaken impression that “states” or international organizations have the “sovereign” right to create ethnically homogeneous populations through involuntary population transfers in violation of the customary prohibitions in the laws of armed conflict against plunder of public or private property and the obligation to respect inheritable family rights and honor. In the past, I’ve commented about the fact that States can’t create and then maintain that sort of illegal status quo by conducting endless “peace negotiations” or even by obtaining a treaty of capitulation from the leaders of the conquered territory. For example:

        “Illegal Obligations. § 506. It is a unanimously recognised customary rule of International Law that obligations which are at variance with universally recognised principles of International Law cannot be the object of a treaty. — International Law. A Treatise. Volume I (of 2) by L. Oppenheim (1912) http://www.gutenberg.org/files/41046/41046-h/41046-h.htm#Page_550 and
        *Article 52. COERCION OF A STATE BY THE THREAT OR USE OF FORCE
        A treaty is void if its conclusion has been procured by the threat or use of force
        in violation of the principles of international law embodied in the Charter of the
        United Nations.
        Article 53.
        TREATIES CONFLICTING WITH A PEREMPTORY NORM
        OF GENERAL INTERNATIONAL LAW (“JUS COGENS”)
        A treaty is void if, at the time of its conclusion, it conflicts with a peremptory
        norm of general international law. For the purposes of the present Convention, a
        peremptory norm of general international law is a norm accepted and recognized by
        the international community of States as a whole as a norm from which no deroga-
        tion is permitted and which can be modified only by a subsequent norm of general in
        ternational law having the same character.

        Article 66,
        PROCEDURES FOR JUDICIAL SETTLEMENT, ARBITRATION
        AND CONCILIATION …
        Any one of the parties to a dispute concerning the application or the interpreta-
        tion of article 53 or 64 may, by a written application, submit it to the Interna-
        tional Court of Justice for a decision unless the parties by common consent
        agree to submit the dispute to arbitration;

        – The UN (Vienna) Convention on the Law of Treaties https://treaties.un.org/doc/Publication/UNTS/Volume%201155/volume-1155-I-18232-English.pdf

        The prohibition of war crimes and crimes against humanity – including the prohibition of apartheid (UN Charter Article 1) and the crime of aggression (any on-going military occupation or blockade in violation of Article 2(4) of the UN Charter) are jus cogens, peremptory norms. Palestine recently became a state party to the UN Convention on the Law of Treaties.

        The customary rules against forceable displacement of populations, pillage, and plunder were recognized and were already applied to civil wars conducted in the mid-19th century, e.g. See the codifications contained in the USA’s Lieber Code and the Hague Rules of 1899 and 1907. The historical exceptions to those rules have invariably been viewed as wrongful acts of state and/or on-going crimes. I’ve commented in the past about the fact that the colonial powers have used so-called “Anti-Semitism,” objections against the racist polices of the State of Israel, as an excuse to avoid attending the UN Durban Conferences, where compensation for their own past and on-going crimes against indigenous peoples were on the agendas. They have opposed the UN Convention on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples and Victims of Crimes and Abuses of Power for much the same reasons. There is a UN Convention on the “Non-Applicability of Statutory Limitations to War Crimes and Crimes Against Humanity” that was adopted to specifically prohibit gentleman’s agreements between those states that would permit things like the “Germanization” of Eastern Europe to go unpunished or unrectified (i.e. “eviction by armed attack, occupation, colonization, and inhuman policies of apartheid, and or genocide) .

        The representative of China explained that during the 48th session on Israel’s UN membership application:
        The attitude of the Israeli Government on the repatriation of Arab refugees was far more disturbing. The theory of national homogeneity could not be supported by the United Nations. One of the basic objectives of the United Nations was to create harmony among peoples of different races and cultures so that they could live together in peace.
        – page 9 link to un.org

        You cannot understand resolution 181(II) without understanding what the minority protection plan said about that subject. During the same meeting the Representative of Lebanon said: The State of Israel, in its present form, directly contravened the previous recommendations of the United Nations in at least three important respects: in its attitude on the problem of Arab refugees, on the delimitation of its territorial boundaries, and on the question of Jerusalem.

        The United Nations had certainly not intended that the Jewish State should rid itself of its Arab citizens. On the contrary, section C of part I of the Assembly’s 1947 resolution had explicitly provided guarantees of minority rights in each of the two States. For example, it had prohibited the expropriation of land owned by an Arab in the Jewish State except for public purposes, and then only upon payment of full compensation. Yet the fact was that 90 per cent of the Arab population of Israel had been driven outside its boundaries by military operations, had been forced to seek refuge in neighbouring Arab territories, had been reduced to misery and destitution, and had been prevented by Israel from returning to their homes. Their homes and property had been seized and were being used by thousands of European Jewish immigrants.”

        The UN, the African Union, Arab League, and all of the signatories of Article 1(4) of the 1st Additional Protocol (1977) to the Geneva Conventions have, either implicitly or explicitly, extended belligerent recognition to the PLO, the ANC and SWAPO as separate national liberation movements representing separate states. They were waging international armed conflicts, not civil wars:

        “The situations referred to in the preceding paragraph include armed conflicts in which peoples are fighting against colonial domination and alien occupation and against racist regimes in the exercise of their right of self-determination, as enshrined in the Charter of the United Nations and the Declaration on Principles of International Law concerning Friendly Relations and Co-operation among States in accordance with the Charter of the United Nations.
        https://www.icrc.org/applic/ihl/ihl.nsf/7c4d08d9b287a42141256739003e636b/f6c8b9fee14a77fdc125641e0052b079

        Chapter 10 of the written submission of Palestine to the ICJ in the 2003 Wall case said that the situation in the Occupied Palestinian territory was precisely analogous to the situation the Court dealt with in the 1970 case of apartheid in the Occupied territory of Nambia. The test developed and applied by the Court at that time relied upon the obligation under Article 1 of the UN Charter for all member states to respect “the principle of equal rights and self-determination of people.”

        Palestine enumerated a long list of constituent acts of apartheid from Article 2 of the UN Apartheid Convention and supplied prima facie evidence that was never rebutted by Israel. It established the government of Israel had committed those acts on the territory of Palestine beyond any doubt. Those acts were mentioned in the Court’s findings of fact as violations of Israel’s obligations the UN Charter, the ICCPR, the ICESCR, the UN CRC, and the 4th Geneva Convention. Note that Israel is not a party to either the Rome Statute or the UN Apartheid Convention. The Court advised that Israel had a legal duty to immediately dismantle the Wall and pay compensation, without the need for any negotiations. Palestine has subsequently referred allegations of the crime of apartheid to the ICC Prosecutor.

        So you need to address the rules of conventional and customary international law reflected in those Articles of the UN Charter (Chapter I, II, IV, XI, XII, and XVI) which always governed the mandates from day one; the creation of new constitutions and trustee states; or the termination of international tutelage and the granting of independence. Some of those rules are mentioned or incorporated in resolutions 181(II) and 194(II), but that does NOT make them “recommendations” – and it does not suffice to claim that the General Assembly was acting beyond its powers. The request for an Advisory Opinion in the Wall Case explicitly stated that resolution 181(II) had divided Palestine into two states, one Jewish and one Arab. It also cited resolution 181(II) as one of the “relevant” General Assembly/Security Council resolutions that it wanted the Court to examine and advise states about in respect to its legal consequences. The Court cited it and the chapter on religious and minority rights as the source of the UN’s on-going and permanent responsibility for the Question of Palestine. It noted that it had not yet been implemented, but it did NOT advise that the General Assembly had acted beyond its powers under the Charter.

        . I’ve also cited resolutions of the very 1st session of the General Assembly on South Africa and the Status of South West Africa; and the four ICJ cases on the Status of South West Africa/Namibia. The UN repeatedly went to the ICJ over the fact that there were two states, not one, and the fact that Namibia was illegally occupied because the General Assembly had said so. It had nothing to do with any Chapter VII resolution, since there never was one. It had everything to do with the powers, functions, and legal competence of the General Assembly to terminate a mandare in order to protect individual human rights; and “the principle of equal rights and self determination of peoples” from abuse by these things you call “states”.

      • Sibiriak
        August 7, 2015, 12:47 am

        Tree: As for the Israelis, some right wing Israeli politicians have actually stated that annexation is desirable, even if it means giving the Palestinian inhabitants the vote. The annexation itself is actually desired by many, if not most, rightwing Israelis
        ——————————–

        But you are ignoring the critical point: most rightwing Israelis support annexing only part of the WB (i.e. Area C with very few Palestinians); a few support annexing the entire West Bank; but almost none supports annexing GAZA.

        Thus, these rightwing annexation plans would leave nearly two million Gazan Palestinians in a completely unviable, overcrowded, failed quasi-state, split off from their WB brethren. Those Palestinians forced into Israeli citizenship would be dominated by the Jewish Israeli majority. And still no ROR.

        Israel might then finally declare its borders and say, what apartheid? The occupation has ended, all Israelis have the right to vote. Gaza and the remains of the West Bank would be the rump Palestinian state (and to survive the might have to confederate with Jordan).

        The international community might try to force the reversal of the annexation (cf. sanctions against Russia for annexing Crimea)–but there would be very little chance that they would try to force Israel to annex Gaza as well . That would be bizarre–opposing one Israeli annexation, clearly illegal under international law, but trying to force another one??

        In short. this would be a terrible disaster for Palestinian nationalism and self-determination.

      • echinococcus
        August 7, 2015, 10:13 am

        Sibiriak,

        You are writing as if there was any chance of any kind of resolution with Zionist assent, as long as the international constellation of forces remains the same. Forget that.
        The only thing that would allow a solution, provided the American Indian solution ( the only one so far implemented by the Zionists) has not been successful until then, is the loss of US omnipotence. In such a situation, however, Zionist consent becomes irrelevant because an easily predictable development in the area is major, multiplayer war, so it may as well end up in total dismemberment à la Iraq or Libya, or a restoration of Palestine (even with “new allegiance, the suitcase or the casket” for the Herrenvolk.) Summary: nothing may happen before loss of total control by the US and everything remains possible after that.

      • Hostage
        August 7, 2015, 10:09 pm

        You are writing as if there was any chance of any kind of resolution with Zionist assent, as long as the international constellation of forces remains the same. Forget that.

        I’ve commented many times before about the legal “sanctions” (see the “S” in BDS) available to Palestinians under the US Code, e.g. http://mondoweiss.net/2015/06/personally-netanyahu-fantastic#comment-774642

        The prohibition against “the pillage of a town or place” (Article 28 of the Hague Rules) and the prohibition against “extensive destruction and appropriation of property, not justified by military necessity and carried out unlawfully and wantonly” (GC 1 Art 50, GC 2 Art. 51, GC 3 Art 130, GC 4 Art. 147) are Class A felonies under 18 US Code § 2441. It’s axiomatic that the tens of thousands of US nationals living in the illegal Israeli settlements are the beneficiaries and co-perpetrators of the same sort of unlawful transactions that the US government prosecuted in the I.G. Farben and Krupp cases after WWII. See Customary IHL – Section B. Pillage committed by civilians https://www.icrc.org/customary-ihl/eng/docs/v2_cou_ch_rule52_sectionb

        There’s no need for Palestinians to wait until there’s a final settlement to go after the assets of those individuals and US Corporations named by the UN, such as ReMax, that have participated in the unlawful transactions. There can be no doubt at all that, under 18 U.S. Code § 1961 – Definitions, RICO itself lists several predicate statutes as examples of racketeering activities and that many of them in-turn contain their own explicit statements regarding the extraterritorial scope of their applicability:
        18 U.S. Code § 1952 – Interstate and foreign travel or transportation in aid of racketeering enterprises; link to law.cornell.edu
        18 U.S. Code § 1960 – Prohibition of unlicensed money transmitting businesses; link to law.cornell.edu
        18 U.S. Code § 1956 – Laundering of monetary instruments; link to law.cornell.edu
        18 U.S. Code § 1957 – Engaging in monetary transactions in property derived from specified unlawful activity; link to law.cornell.edu

        Here is an article on the use of criminal and civil remedies available under the RICO statutes and the IRS tax codes as “Legal Avenues to Prosecute a US Citizen for War Crimes” based upon the author’s testimony to the US Congress as a member of the Department of State’s Advisory Committee on International Law. He’s currently employed a Legal Advisor to the US DoD link to justsecurity.org

        The US Supreme Court explained that victims don’t need permission from the Justice Department or to put-up with long waiting periods:

        “In rejecting a significantly different focus under RICO, therefore, we are honoring an analogy that Congress itself accepted and relied upon, and one that promotes the objectives of civil RICO as readily as it furthers the objects of the Clayton Act. Both statutes share a common congressional objective of encouraging civil litigation to supplement Government efforts to deter and penalize the respectively prohibited practices. The object of civil RICO is thus not merely to compensate victims but to turn them into prosecutors, “private attorneys general,” dedicated to eliminating racketeering activity. Id., at 187 (citing Malley-Duff, 483 U.S., at 151) (civil RICO specifically has a “further purpose [of] encouraging potential private plaintiffs diligently to investigate”). The provision for treble damages is accordingly justified by the expected benefit of suppressing racketeering activity, an object pursued the sooner the better. It would, accordingly, be strange to provide an unusually long basic limitations period that could only have the effect of postponing whatever public benefit civil RICO might realize. — SUPREME COURT OF THE UNITED STATES No. 98—896 (2000) MARK ROTELLA, PETITIONER v. ANGELA M.
        WOOD et al. https://www.law.cornell.edu/supct/html/98-896.ZO.html

      • just
        August 7, 2015, 8:07 pm

        Thank you, Hostage. I don’t want to assume too much here, but am I correct in thinking that the same would apply to properties appropriated by people other than the ‘holders of the deed’ in Iraq and Afghanistan as well?

        (I think you meant tree and not Taxi in your response @ 7:58 pm.)

      • Hostage
        August 7, 2015, 10:21 pm

        don’t want to assume too much here, but am I correct in thinking that the same would apply to properties appropriated by people other than the ‘holders of the deed’ in Iraq and Afghanistan as well?

        Of course.

        (I think you meant tree and not Taxi in your response)

        I’ll take your word for it. It’s getting impossible to scroll backup and find a reply button and I was working from memory.

      • inbound39
        August 7, 2015, 9:37 pm

        With regard to Israels water problems I can recall reading some time back that Israel has three main water sources and that two of those are in the West Bank meaning they are,legally, Palestinian water sources. The article I read also stated that Israel had poisoned its own water table through seepage of waste from the Dimona Reactor and from Industrial waste from ammunition manufacturers and weapons manufacturers. For a people that are constantly declaring how smart they are and much smarter than everyone else they appear to have been so smart they outsmarted themselves. It intrigues me how close Israeli traits are to active alcoholics and addicts.

      • just
        August 7, 2015, 10:50 pm

        The scrolling is mighty lengthy indeed, but it’s worth it to me. Your “memory” and knowledge are now legendary, you know.

        Thank you very much for your response, Hostage. I hope that it will prove helpful to some folks that I know.

        The Israelis have stolen so much, inbound39. They never stop, and they never will on their own. They need to be stopped.

    • zaid
      August 4, 2015, 12:34 pm

      I as a palestinian refugee will never accept any deal that would not include the right of return, PERIOD.

      They can waste their time negotiating as much as they want.

      It is unbelievable how the trend toward the 1 state solution among palestinians id progressing.

      Currently around 1 of 3 palestinians reject the 2 state solution and this is without any significant effort to promote it.

      And these numbers are from the West bank, I imagine the diaspora palestinians like me will be even more in favor of 1s1v1p

      • diasp0ra
        August 4, 2015, 12:41 pm

        In a poll administered by the PCPSR Khalil al Shikaki wrote that the number of Palestinians supporting a one state paradigm shift is increasing, and that should a popular Palestinian leader, say for instance, Barghouti adopt it, the majority would easily come to accept it.

        I truly believe that is what is going to happen in the long run, once Israel officially annexes Areas C and the international community will be forced to acknowledge the facts on the ground.

      • just
        August 4, 2015, 2:59 pm

        Thank you, diasp0ra and zaid, for your comments here (and elsewhere;).

        No discussion about P/I is worthwhile unless Palestinians are involved. You contribute essential and really smart points of view to the “War of Ideas in the Middle East” and ideas for solving them. Thanks again to David for this article that brought about important dialogue.

        So, onward to 1S1P1V !!! Full- on BDS! Never give up!

      • CigarGod
        August 4, 2015, 3:30 pm

        Right on!
        Of course there has to be full ROR.

      • David Gerald Fincham
        August 4, 2015, 5:18 pm

        zaid: a two-state solution does not necessarily prevent return of the refugees. That is an individual human right which cannot be negotiated away. What is required is for international law to be enforced by the Security Council.

        The only just solution to the refugee problem in my view is that they be helped to make their own individual decisions as to what they want to do: some may want to return to their original locations in Israel, some to Palestine, some to stay in their current Arab host states, and some to go to other countries in the world.

      • zaid
        August 4, 2015, 6:48 pm

        Another point most 2 staters forget is the 1948 palestinians.

        This group will suffer even more than now in Israel.

        This group will lift the bar of its demands after they see their brothers in the West Bank living as 1st class citizens in a state that treats them the way they should be treated.

        I can predict what the Israelis will say to 1948 palestinians every time they demand equal rights, they will tell them:

        “We gave you the west bank, stop demanding, and if you dont like it here then go live there.”

        Israel will become more hostile to its arab population and the arab population in israel will become more hostile to zionism.

        In short: the Galil will follow the west bank and demand right of self determination.

        A conflict ends and another conflict begins.

      • Bandolero
        August 4, 2015, 7:06 pm

        zaid

        Another point most 2 staters forget is the 1948 palestinians. This group will suffer even more than now in Israel…. In short: the Galil will follow the west bank and demand right of self determination. A conflict ends and another conflict begins.

        I agree. That’s why I think the proposal of Neturei Karta to solve the middle east problem is the most realistic one:

        http://www.nkusa.org/activities/statements/20090209.cfm

        A further plus of that plan is that it has a lot of regional support. And, I think, the longer Bibi is boss in Israel, chances are getting every day better and better that international support for Neturei Karta’s solution of the middle east problem grows world wide until the tipping point is reached.

      • David Gerald Fincham
        August 5, 2015, 5:30 am

        Point 1 of the Neturei Karta program is dissolution of the State of Israel by the UN. Israel was not created by the UN, as I hope my article makes clear. The UN is not a world government. Its Charter does not give it the power to dissolve sovereign states. The whole thing is cloud-cuckoo land.

      • zaid
        August 4, 2015, 8:49 pm

        basically 1 state for all.

      • Hostage
        August 8, 2015, 1:28 am

        I as a palestinian refugee will never accept any deal that would not include the right of return, PERIOD.

        The RoR is inalienable and non-negotiable, however compensation for those refugees who voluntarily elect resettlement elsewhere is negotiable. See Chapter 38. of the Customary Rules of International Humanitarian Law (IHL) Displacement and Displaced Persons https://www.icrc.org/customary-ihl/eng/docs/v1_cha_chapter38 and in particular Rule 132. Return of Displaced Persons https://www.icrc.org/customary-ihl/eng/docs/v1_cha_chapter38_rule132 and Rule 133. Property Rights of Displaced Persons https://www.icrc.org/customary-ihl/eng/docs/v1_cha_chapter38_rule133

      • Hostage
        August 8, 2015, 3:03 am

        Israel was not created by the UN, as I hope my article makes clear. The UN is not a world government. Its Charter does not give it the power to dissolve sovereign states. The whole thing is cloud-cuckoo land.

        Correction: While the UN is not a World legislature, the UN Charter most certainly does empower it to adopt legally binding “decisions” on behalf of the members regarding the non-recognition of illegal governmental regimes, including any unilateral declaration of independence conjoined to serious violations of international law. It also has adopted Statutes and established various International Criminal Tribunals for situations, like the assassination of Rafic Hariri, which do not rise anywhere near the level of frustration and international concern over the multitude of illegal situations that Israel has wantonly created in Palestine.

        It doesn’t matter at all when the incriminating information comes to light, § 201, § 202, and § 203 of The Restatement (Third) of the Foreign Relations Law of the United States stipulates that all States are under a customary obligation NOT to recognize a State or Government, or establish and maintain diplomatic relations with one that has acquired any of the necessary attributes of statehood in violation of the UN Charter, i.e. ethnic cleansing, acquisition of territory by war, the establishment of ethnic minority rule.

        See for example UN Security Council S/Res/216 (1965) http://www.un.org/ga/search/view_doc.asp?symbol=S/RES/217%281965%29 and S/Res/217 (1965) http://www.un.org/en/ga/search/view_doc.asp?symbol=S/RES/217%281965%29 This extract from the written submission of the USA to the ICJ in the Kosovo case provides additional background on the Fourth Report to the International Law Commission by its Rapportuer, James Crawford on State Responsibility, A /CN.4/517,2 April 2001, para. 41.:

        Section III. “The Situation May Differ When Declarations Of Independence Are Conjoined With Actions That Themselves Violate International Law”
        Although declarations of independence do not by themselves violate international
        law, they are at times conjoined with other events or acts in combination with which they
        might be characterized as serious international law violations. This is an important
        distinction. For example, where a declaration of independence is adopted in conjunction
        with an effort to establish an apartheid regime—which would amount to a serious
        violation of a peremptory norm of international law—declarations of independence
        have been characterized as unlawful. Thus, the United Nations Security Council adopted
        a resolution that condemned the “usurpation of power” by the white supremacist leader of
        the Southern Rhodesian government, Ian Smith, and stated the Security Council’s view
        that his government’s declaration of independence had “no legal validity.”

        — See page 56 http://www.icj-cij.org/docket/files/141/15640.pdf

        At the time that Israel was admitted to the UN organization, it falsely declared its willingness to repatriate the Palestine refugees and implement resolutions 181(II) and 194(III) in good faith. It denied that it had driven the bulk of its Arab population into exile. That story is simply no longer tenable in light of its subsequent conduct and the published accounts by the responsible Israeli officials involved in the actual crimes of aggression. There are 174 State Parties to Article 85(4) and (5) of the 1st Additional Protocol (1977) to the Geneva Conventions. It declared “unreasonable delay” in repatriating prisoners and refugees; colonizing occupied territories; and the practices of apartheid grave breaches and war crimes. https://www.icrc.org/applic/ihl/ihl.nsf/Article.xsp?action=openDocument&documentId=73D05A98B6CEB566C12563CD0051E1A0

        We now know that the establishment of the state of Israel was conjoined to very serious crimes against humanity, which deliberately displaced Arab people on a massive scale that wouldn’t have gone unnoticed in Eastern Europe during WWII:
        “100-Year-Old General: We Razed Arab Villages, So What?: Brig. Gen. (res.) Yitzhak Pundak: If we hadn’t done it, there would be a million more Arabs and there would be no Israel.
        http://www.israelnationalnews.com/News/News.aspx/168912#.VYuDd7y37tR

        100-Year-Old Becomes Israeli Major-General
        100-year-old finally gets rank of “Major General” that he earned 60 years ago.
        http://www.israelnationalnews.com/News/News.aspx/171126
        Gen. Pundak: Kill 500 in Gaza and They’ll be Quiet
        Newly promoted 100-year old general who was Gaza Governor supplies his formula for peace.
        http://www.israelnationalnews.com/News/News.aspx/171139#.VYuPlLy37tQ
        I happen to think those sort of statements and official actions are examples of practices of apartheid and officially sanctioned incitement. They constitute the public trivialization of serious on-going crimes against humanity made by one of the actual state officials responsible for exercising military authority over the destruction of hundreds of Arab villages and operating the illegal occupation regime in Gaza. Rather than prosecute him or extradite him for prosecution elsewhere, the government of Israel promoted him!

        In his own autobiography, “Soldier of Peace”, Yitzhak Rabin openly admitted his complicity in serious crimes against humanity in connection with the ethnic cleansing of Lydda & Ramla. Menachim Begin openly admitted that he intentionally targeted the civilian population of Jaffa too. See Menachem Begin, ‘The Revolt – story of the Irgun’. Translated by Samuel Katz. Hadar Publishing, Tel Aviv. 1964. Page 355 – 371. So, we know perfectly well that those refugees did not voluntarily flee their land or abandon their properties. Despite Rabin’s apparent remorse, the fact remains that he was unwilling to repatriate, or pay to compensate and resettle Palestinian refugees. He encouraged the military to break the bones of demonstrators during uprisings; employed targeted killings, forced disappearances, and torture; employed closures and curfews as collective punishments; used political prisoners as bargaining chips; condoned the military’s “neighbor” policies & etc. Quigley’s “Apartheid Outside of Africa” article noted the use of similar policies and practices by the Military Government in Israel to displace and dominate the remaining Arab population between 1948 and 1966. The Israeli High Court itself subsequently ruled that many of those tactics were criminal. In the cases that were decided during the Rabin administration, the Knesset refused to set up commissions to investigate the Premier. See for example Israel Declines to Study Rabin Tie to Beatings

        BTW, the creation of states in territories that were or are the subject of an international trust is one of the areas of competence that falls within the exclusive legal purview of the UN Organization in accordance with the explicit terms of the UN Charter itself. It happens to be a multilateral treaty, with bases in a plethora of principles and rules of customary international law. So the pertinent question isn’t who created Israel, but rather if its creation or continued existence as presently constituted happens to be illegal or an on-going crime, given all of the relevant facts and the evidence.

        The Union of South Africa was a sovereign state that was dismantled with the help of UN and international sanctions. Nothing prevents the same thing from happening to Israel.

    • Sibiriak
      August 4, 2015, 12:58 pm

      ritzl: . To me, the path seems to be annexation …
      ———————————
      Israel might at some point opt to annex part of the West Bank, or all of it (unlikely), BUT NOT GAZA, because doing so would destroy the very foundation of Zionism–Israel’s Jewish majority. But if Israel absorbs just (part of) the WB, the Palestinian population in Palestine will be split in two, the refugees will remain dispersed, and the new Palestinian citizens in Israel will be dominated by a racist, supremacist Jewish majority.

      Furthermore, there is no reason whatsoever to assume that annexation of WB territory would be a first step toward creation of a single state. It could well be a final step, leading to Israel unilaterally declaring it’s borders.

      As Jeff Halper put it:

      Israel could well annex area C, which is 60 per cent of the West Bank. […] area C contains less than 5 per cent of the Palestinian population. In 1967 the Jordan valley contained about 250,000 people. Today it’s less than 50,000. So the Palestinians have either been driven out of the country, especially the middle class, or they have been driven to areas A and B. That’s where 96 or 97 per cent of them are.

      The Palestinian population has been brought down low enough, there is probably somewhere around 12,5000 Palestinians in area C, so Israel could annex area C and give them full citizenship.

      Basically, Israel can absorb 125,000 Palestinians without upsetting the demographic balance. And then, what is the world going to say? It’s not apartheid, Israel has given them full citizenship. So I think Israel feels it could get away with that.

      No one cares about what’s happening in areas A and B. If they want to declare a state, they can…

      http://newint.org/features/web-exclusive/2012/04/26/jeff-halper-interview-israel-palestine/

      Israeli expansionism is determined by the overarching goal of grabbing as much territory as possible, with as few Palestinians as possible. The idea that right-wing Zionist annexation plans would necessarily be a step toward a single democratic state is, imo, an extremely dubious and dangerous notion.

  14. Denis
    August 2, 2015, 9:46 pm

    Thanks so much for this series, David. Having just discovered your website, I am in awe of the amount of effort you have expended on what many of us perceive to be the most frightening political threat to the species, and I’m talkin’ about the Samson Option and 400 surreptitious nukes controlled by the likes of Bibi, and the violent fundamental Wahhabis/Salafis running out of control all through the region. It is not an “optimistic” mix for the future of the world as a whole.

    A couple of questions:

    1) Your first article left off (just before the 400!! comments) with the League of Nations Mandate for Palestine – 1922. Your second article begins with the 1947 British summary on the cock-up referred to as the British Mandate. There’s 25 very interesting years in between that include a world war. We don’t get much info on what was going on in Palestine during WWII.

    You allude in this article to both Jews and Arabs supporting the British effort. But I thought the Nazis were supported by the Arabs — that whole Desert Fox thing, which might have influenced the viewpoint of Truman in 1948 deciding whether to go with the Jews or the Arabs in the Palestine deal. Did WWII play no role in the debacle that took place in Palestine in 1948?

    2) Another historical point that is never discussed is the intra-Semitic demographics of those 1.3M Jews in Palestine at the time the Mandate ended. My impression is that they were virtually all Ashkenazi from Eastern Europe/Russia, who were never all that well integrated into their communities, as rumor has it. Why would one expect them to become integrated with Arabs? I mean, my understanding is that Irgun, Stern Gang, and the other Semitic terrorist groups in Palestine were comprised of Ashkenazi. I wouldn’t want them in my back yard either, and I get along with everybody.

    What fraction of the Jews in Palestine at the end of the Mandate were Sephardi? And my reason for asking it is that it seems the Sephardi did pretty well living next to and among Muslims after the fall of the Second Temple, and I’m thinking of their generally peaceful and mutually beneficial co-existence with the Arabs in N. Africa and the Moors in Andalusia in the Middle Ages (up until the Catholics started butchering them all in 1492). Did Sephardi Jews play a significant role in the Nakba? Were there Sephardi Stern Gangs? Is the analysis of this situation helped by considering differences in the histories and psychologies of Sephardi vs Ashkenazi?

    I guess another way to ask the question I’m asking is this: If I had a Helen Thomas magic wand and could make all the Jews in Palestine go back to “wherever the Hell they came from,” wouldn’t most of them end up in the Ukraine, Poland, Russia, etc.?

    3) When you study that map of the UN partition plan, it really is an attractive proposition from today’s viewpoint. Those two tiny points of continuity between both sides, are beautiful. Ports for both sides, access to the Jordan R. for both sides. The Jews got 55%, but most of the excess was sand. I can totally see the Arabs’ point of view, but maybe it could have been another Granada . . . dreamin’ again.

    • RoHa
      August 3, 2015, 5:32 am

      “You allude in this article to both Jews and Arabs supporting the British effort. But I thought the Nazis were supported by the Arabs — that whole Desert Fox thing,”

      The Desert Fox was Rommel. Nothing to do with Arabs.

      In Palestine the British recruited Arabs and Jews into the Palestine Regiment. They fought in North Africa. However, the Hagannah persuade the Jewish section to replace the Union Jack with a Star of David. This broke the Regiment, and it was disbanded.

      http://www.countercurrents.org/fisk171103.htm

      The Libyan Brigade was their own idea. They were Senussis who allied themselves with the British to eject the Italians.

      There was pro-Nazi, anti-British sentiment in Iraq. In Egypt, where the British forces in the ME had their major bases, the Egyptians mostly supported the British. Many of the Free French forces were Arabs from French North Africa.

      However, my own guess is that most people in the area just wanted all the foreigners – Italians, French, British, Germans, and, eventually, Americans – to go away and fight their wars somewhere else.

    • David Gerald Fincham
      August 3, 2015, 10:11 am

      Thank you Denis.

      As to your point 1, no the Arabs did not in general support the Nazi’s, except for one notorious character, Amin al-Husseini. You can read his story on Wikipedia. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Haj_Amin_al-Husseini.

      The High Commissioner rigged the election for Mufti of Jerusalem, giving the post to Amin, and also created a new job for him as President of the newly formed Supreme Muslim Council. He was the most powerful Arab politician in Palestine, and when the disparate Arab groups got together in 1936 to form the Arab Higher Committee, he became its Chairman. This group lead the Arab revolt of 1936-39, and Amin fled he country fearing arrest. He did indeed collaborate with the Nazis during the second world war.

      As to your point 2, at the end of the Mandate most of the Jews in Palestine were Ashkenazi. However, during the 1948-49 war and afterwards, up to a million middle eastern Jews (mizrahim?) moved to Israel: a combination of attraction to Israel and repulsion by the Arab states.

    • Keith
      August 3, 2015, 4:25 pm

      DENIS- “But I thought the Nazis were supported by the Arabs….”

      It is a Zionist propaganda meme that the Arabs were Nazi sympathizers due to the association of the Mufti of Jerusalem with the Axis. The Mufti was of marginal influence. What is downplayed is the attempts by the Zionist revisionists to form alliances with both fascist Italy and Nazi Germany. Iconic uber Zionist Vladimir Jabotinsky was involved as well as future Israeli Prime Ministers Menachem Begin and Yitzhak Shamir. Prior to World War II, Adolph Eichmann met with Haganah representative Feivel Polkes to discuss areas of mutual interest. Eichmann was impressed with Polkes and wrote that if he had been born a Jew he would have become a Zionist. These efforts never went anywhere but said a lot about those involved. And while Zionists like to overemphasize the Mufti, Zionist dealings with the Nazis are never mentioned.

  15. traintosiberia
    August 3, 2015, 9:19 am

    “You allude in this article to both Jews and Arabs supporting the British effort. But I thought the Nazis were supported by the Arabs — that whole Desert Fox thing, which might have influenced the viewpoint of Truman in 1948 deciding whether to go with the Jews or the Arabs in the Palestine deal. Did WWII play no role in the debacle that took place in Palestine in 1948?

    – See more at: http://mondoweiss.net/2015/07/independent-sovereign-palestine#sthash.oVqOr5jQ.dpuf

    There is no evidence of Nazi supporting the Arab. Kaiser was interested for trade .
    Mufti met Hitler long after his effort to get British understand the threat to indigenous Palestinian had failed and he became a target for assassination.
    Hitler helped the Zionist both ideologically and materially.

  16. Brewer
    August 3, 2015, 9:19 pm

    I wrote this essay about the British involvement leading up to partition back in 2008:
    “Did the Brits really screw the pooch?”
    http://brewerstroupe.blogspot.co.nz/2008/06/did-brits-really-screw-pooch.html
    Readers keen on the History may find some points of interest in it, unfortunately I haven’t time, at present, to fully digest this thread and comment specifically. The History of the period has been distorted beyond recognition by Zionist revisionism based on incremental-ism – the practice of seizing every small opportunity to strengthen their position then re-writing the intent and spirit of what was meant at the time. I came to the conclusion that the British probably tried for an equitable settlement but the Zionists grossly exploited any concession, playing both sides against the middle.

    • David Gerald Fincham
      August 4, 2015, 9:56 am

      Brewer: thank you for commenting. I liked your blog article. Article 2 may suggest to some people that a Jewish State is intended, but this is a mis-reading. I discussed this in detail in my previous Mondoweiss article “Understanding the Jewish national Home”.

  17. David Gerald Fincham
    August 5, 2015, 4:57 am

    Dear commenters. Thank you very much for your interest in my article. I always find that the Mondoweiss comments help me to clarify my thinking. I hope my writing is getting better as a result.

    I am sorry I have to leave the scene for a while. I look forward to meeting you next time.

    Kind regards, David

    • just
      August 5, 2015, 5:20 am

      You’ve been very gracious and engaged, David Gerald Fincham.

      Many thanks & safe travels.

  18. Hostage
    August 6, 2015, 5:57 am

    In a little-known document [PDF, see also my HTML version], the British Government gave a summary of events during the Mandate, explaining why they had been unable to achieve all of its goals, and why they decided to hand over responsibility to the UN.

    I’m sorry but major portions of that document proved to be pure propaganda. I’ll have to break this post in two in order to get the WordPress script to accept it.

    In 1944, Churchill announced that the government would produce an official series of “Documents on British Foreign Policy”. When they and the USA’s corresponding official documents on the subject were finally declassified and published in the FRUS, historians the world over had a field day. It was patently obvious to everyone that both countries had given the Arabs a cold, calculated screwing-over for twenty five years or more – all while denying it; publicly protesting their complete innocence; and apologizing for the abject failure of their “best endevours” on behalf of the Palestinians.

    I’ve commented here in the past about the fact that US Secretary of State Lansing resigned after the Versailles Peace Conference and wrote a scathing exposé which explained that the system of mandates was simply a device to divide the spoils of war between the principal allied powers, without deducting the value of their natural resources and revenues from the reparations owed by the enemy states which had forfeited them. Lansing also wrote that Wilson supported the aims of the Zionist movement, which could not be reconciled with the right of the Palestinians to self-determination. https://books.google.com/books?id=-GrOAAAAMAAJ&lpg=PA97&ots=mW0uPq40rD&pg=PA97#v=onepage&q&f=false It was no accident then that the King-Crane Commission report was classified and kept secret.

    The Arabs and Jews were represented by decision makers in the Sublime Porte and their own lawmakers in the Ottoman Parliament, which among other things, had established suitable legal conditions for Jewish immigration to Palestine. The British occupation forced that body into permanent adjournment in March of 1920. The Arabs and Jews were likewise represented in the Syrian General Congress that was convened at about the same time, in line with both the assurances contained in the Anglo-French Declaration of November 7, 1918 and the memorandum circulated by Balfour himself to the members of the Eastern Committee of the War Cabinet on December 5, 1918 (See E.C. 41st Minutes). It advised that the British government had promised the Sharif of Mecca that Palestine would be included in the territories that would be part of the independent Arab state or confederation of Arab states.

    Great Britain and France promised “the complete and final liberation of the peoples” who had been oppressed by the Ottoman Empire and said that the form of the new governments would be determined by local populations, rather than imposed by the signatory powers. Instead of welcoming the declaration of the establishment of the new Syrian state, they hastily convened the San Remo Conference and planned to overturn the decision of the indigenous Congress. By 1952, E.L. Woodward and Rohan Butler had spilled the beans by publishing things, like Balfour’s infamous August 11, 1919 Memorandum Nº. 242 from the Paris Peace Conference which admitted the Arabs had clearly been promised their independence, but added:

    “Zionism, be it right or wrong, good or bad, is rooted in age-long traditions, in present needs, in future hopes, of far profounder import than the desires and prejudices of the 700,000 Arabs who now inhabit that ancient land. … Whatever deference should be paid to the views of those who live there, the Powers in their selection of a mandatory do not propose, as I understand the matter, to consult them. In short, so far as Palestine is concerned, the Powers have made no statement of fact which is not admittedly wrong, and no declaration of policy which, at least in the letter, they have not always intended to violate.”

    See the full text in Documents on British Foreign Policy, 1919-1939, London:HM Stationery Office, 1952, pp 340-348 available online @ https://www.scribd.com/fullscreen/60431057?access_key=key-136ulpy32ssl2l27p8nb

    The LoN Permanent Mandates Commission received complaints from Palestinian Arabs about the fact that their “existing right” to elect their own lawmakers was being flagrantly violated by the new British government. When questioned about the situation, the representative of Great Britain engaged in dissimulation and refused to provide a proper answer:

    Arab Complaints with Respect to their Political Freedom.
    M. PALACIOS thought that the development of local government was beginning to follow a satisfactory course. He would refer, however, to the complaint made in the last Arab petition to the following effect:
    The Palestinian under the Turk elected his village representative called “Mukhtar”, his mayor and municipal council in town, the members of the administrative Council, who administered the district under the presidency of the governor, the members of the Common Council, who legislated for all questions relating to local affairs of the district, and, finally, his member of Parliament at Constantinople, where the general affairs of the Empire were freely discussed. Under the British mandate, the village representative is in practice appointed by the district governor, the mayor and the municipal council are appointed by the High Commissioner, the administrative and common councils do not exist, and the Parliament is out of the question.”
    Colonel SYMES said the complaint was more accurate in theory than in fact. The conception of the Turkish administration had been totally different from that of the British, for the former knew perfectly well that their district officers had, in practice, complete control over all local governing bodies, which, if they ran counter to the Government, found themselves dissolved. It was quite true that in many instances the Mukhtar had been appointed by the mandatory Power and not elected, but the Commission should remember that the Mukhtar was the Government agent in the village with whom the Government had all its dealings. Whenever it proved possible for villages to elect them they were allowed to do so, but in cases where animosity was very strong it had been necessary in the interests of peace and good work to appoint a Mukhtar. In theory, municipalities had held wide powers under Turkish rule. In actual fact, however, those powers had been but a shadow, for they had been unable to run counter to the desires of the Turkish district officers.
    The municipal bodies would gradually be re-established on a popular basis, but it should not be forgotten that the nominated municipalities had rendered good public service in the past five years. Had the members been elected instead of nominated it is doubtful if they would have been equally efficient.
    With regard to the complaint to the effect that the Arabs had been deprived of their deputies in the Ottoman Parliament, Colonel Symes did not think that such deputies had ever exercised much influence in the direction of the Ottoman Empire.
    M. VAN REES thought that the explanations of Colonel Symes, which were of great interest, ought to have been furnished in writing by the British Government when replying to the petition. In general, the British Government should endeavour to answer petitions in greater detail.
    The CHAIRMAN agreed. What the Commission required was a clear and definite reply in writing in answer to all petitions.
    Colonel SYMES pointed out that all his observations had already been made to the Commission and would be found in the record of its Seventh Session.
    The CHAIRMAN expressed the hope that the mandatory Power would take account of the Commission’s desires in this respect in future. –

    link to unispal.un.org

    After the great Arab Revolts, Great Britain planned yet another propaganda campaign by having a Committee examine the McMahon-Hussein Correspondence. Declassified documents revealed that the government knew all along that the interpretation of the correspondence it had employed for a decade was untenable and false, i.e. the only “district” west of Allepo for the French to have an interest in just so happened to be the deep blue sea. But it said that and the other inconvenient facts were no reason to abandon the tactic at such a late date. The author, Lord Halifax, made the remarkable (and preposterous) claim that the Arabs hadn’t seemed to notice the British government’s deception. See “Palestine: Legal Arguments Likely to be Advanced by Arab Representatives”, Memorandum by the Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs, January 1939, UK National Archives, CAB 24/282, CP 19 (39)
    link to discovery.nationalarchives.gov.uk

    • Hostage
      August 6, 2015, 6:05 am

      In a little-known document [PDF, see also my HTML version], the British Government gave a summary of events during the Mandate, explaining why they had been unable to achieve all of its goals, and why they decided to hand over responsibility to the UN.

      Part II

      The US State Department’s foremost expert on international law, who literally wrote the State Department’s books on the subject under five US Presidents, finally advised Roosevelt that US silence amounted to support for Zionist minority rule and aggression in Palestine. He noted that Zionists would never negotiate a just settlement if they could rely on our support or acquiescence to their use of armed force. He also advised that our policy violated the principles laid down in the Atlantic Charter, which Americans had defended in WWI and in the current war (WWII). See Foreign relations of the United States diplomatic papers, 1942. The Near East and Africa (1942) link to digicoll.library.wisc.edu

      After Chapter 11 of the UN Charter, Declaration Regarding Non-Self-Governing Territories, had entered into force in June of 1945, the conflicting terms of the Palestine Mandate were rendered null and void by operation of Article 103 of the Charter, i.e. “In the event of a conflict between the obligations of the Members of the United Nations under the present Charter and their obligations under any other international agreement, their obligations under the present Charter shall prevail.” Note that the scope of Article 80 was strictly limited to Chapter 12 Trusteeships, i.e. “nothing in this Chapter shall be construed in or of itself to alter in any manner the rights whatsoever of any states or any peoples or the terms of existing international instruments to which Members of the United Nations may respectively be parties.” UN General Assembly resolution 9(I) had called attention to the fact that the treaty obligations under Chapter 11 were already in full force and effect and did not require any trusteeship agreements. http://www.un.org/ga/search/view_doc.asp?symbol=A/RES/9%28I%29

      The Anglo-American Inquiry Committee was employed as yet another excuse to postpone the establishment of self-governing institutions in Palestine. It simply recommended more of the same (“rule by machine gun”) until a UN trusteeship could be established. The time wasted on its work would have been much better spent on a referral to the UN in the first place. Declassified documents revealed that the Mandatory had lost control of Jewish immigration; that the Jewish Agency was actively directing and controlling acts of terror, and that all of the Committee’s members were diametrically opposed to a democratically elected government and majority rule. They insisted that the Jewish minority must be represented on the basis of “parity”, rather than on the basis of non-discrimination and equal protection under the law. See:
      *Top Secret “Cabinet Memorandum: Long-term Policy in Palestine”. CAB 129/11 http://discovery.nationalarchives.gov.uk/details/r/D7654725 ;
      * Jewish agency Complicity in Terrorist Acts Cabinet Conclusion: Minutes and Papers: CAB 128/6 http://discovery.nationalarchives.gov.uk/details/r/D7662958 ; and
      * British White paper Statement of Information relating to Acts of Violence http://www.jpress.nli.org.il/Olive/APA/NLI/SharedView.Article.aspx?parm=VHEVwL3dlJELy9L8zKvysu%2BkNwq3pogQ1PINVKFkfLw0WQnumzhtgyycCYurQMiPYw%3D%3D&mode=image&href=PLS%2F1946%2F07%2F30&page=2

      The Inner Circle of the Jewish Agency Executive had to make a public statement renouncing terror in order to get its own officials released from prison. So it published an arrogant resolution that denied any involvement and half-heartedly condemned the actions of other Jewish terrorists. See the annex to CP (46) 414 Palestine. Release of detained Jewish leaders. CAB 129/14 http://discovery.nationalarchives.gov.uk/details/r/D7654880

      Rabbi Silver’s remarks to the Security Council were part of an ultimatum launched in the wake of Truman’s decision in March of 1948 to abandon the partition plan, because it could only be imposed by force. Silver and Ben Gurion made it clear that “The Jewish State Exists,” because the Jews would defend it (against any UN trusteeship) through the use of force. See Ben Gurion’s Palestine Post article on the subject in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs “Jewish reaction to the trusteeship idea (Abba Hillel Silver and David Ben-Gurion)” http://www.mfa.gov.il/MFA/ForeignPolicy/MFADocuments/Yearbook1/Pages/Jewish%20reaction%20to%20the%20trusteeship%20idea.aspx

      Silver undercut his bizarre claim that the plan wasn’t an integrated one, when he stated that the Jewish Agency would only consider UN administration of Jerusalem as part of the partition plan, but that United Nations administration of Jerusalem apart from the plan for a Jewish state would create a serious obstacle to such co-operation. See the verbatim minutes of the Security Council S/PV.271, 19 March 1948 Note that the Jewish Agency was already trying to weasel out of the Economic Union and that the Security Council wasn’t buying the idea of the UN paying the bill for essential public services in the rump Arab state.

      US Ambassador Austin corrected him on the spot about the notion that the plan didn’t require the establishment of an Arab State: The limited responsibilities of the United Nations set forth in the plan are inseparable from the balance of the plan and are dependent upon the adoption and implementation of the entire plan. This essential unity of the General Assembly recommendation was emphasized by the Chairman of the Palestine Commission in his statement to the Security Council on 24 February [253rd meeting]. I quote from that very able statement:

      “I have put some stress upon the words ‘plan of partition as it has been envisaged by the General Assembly’ since it is with the implementation of this plan that our Commission has been entrusted. It is quite natural and legitimate for interested parties to concentrate their efforts preponderantly, if not exclusively, on such parts of the plan as are intended more especially for their sake. The Commission is not in such a position; its duty, according to its terms of reference, is to provide for the implementation of the whole plan which has been conceived by the General Assembly.

      “… Since the plan has been envisaged as a whole, the realization and sound functioning of one part of the plan has been made, in a substantial degree, dependent upon the establishment and functioning of its other parts.”

      The limited functions which the General Assembly offered to undertake in connexion with its Palestine recommendation stand or fall with that resolution. If it proves impossible to give effect to that resolution, the United Nations will have on 15 May 1948 no administrative and govern mental responsibilities for Palestine, unless further action is taken by the General Assembly.

      The plan proposed by the General Assembly was an integral plan which would not succeed unless each of its parts could be carried out.” See S/PV.271, 19 March 1948 http://unispal.un.org/UNISPAL.NSF/0/5072DB486ADF13D0802564AD00394160

      • David Gerald Fincham
        August 6, 2015, 6:49 am

        Wow again! I was particularly struck by your reference to article 103 of the Charter: “In the event of a conflict between the obligations of the Members of the United Nations under the present Charter and their obligations under any other international agreement, their obligations under the present Charter shall prevail.”

        Has there ever been a formal examination of ways in which the obligations of Britain in the Mandate are in conflict with its Chapter XI obligations? No doubt we would say that the obligation to establish the Jewish National Home in Palestine conflicted with Britain’s obligation to hold the territory as a sacred trust for the people of the territory: but Britain would say that by the time of the UN Charter the Jewish National Home already existed, and that the sacred trust extended to both the Arab and Jewish residents (at least to those who were not illegal immigrants.)

      • Hostage
        August 6, 2015, 3:21 pm

        Has there ever been a formal examination of ways in which the obligations of Britain in the Mandate are in conflict with its Chapter XI obligations? No doubt we would say that the obligation to establish the Jewish National Home in Palestine conflicted with Britain’s obligation to hold the territory as a sacred trust for the people of the territory: but Britain would say that by the time of the UN Charter the Jewish National Home already existed, and that the sacred trust extended to both the Arab and Jewish residents (at least to those who were legal residents.)

        I’ll address the sacred trust and the Royal and UN Commissions that performed examinations in a separate post. That’s a very good question, but you still need to keep a few preliminary issues in mind. The draft mandates were ratified and implemented via inclusion in a resolution of the Council of the LoN. When the US Senate refused to ratify the Treaties of Versailles, Sèvres, and Lausanne, the USA had to negotiate its own separate mandate conventions with each of the mandatories that recited the terms of their mandate instruments in the preamble. Everyone agreed at the time that those US bilateral agreements reflected legally binding rules of conventional international law. At one and the same time, a veritable cottage industry was created by experts who published journal articles and law reports on the subject of state-centric legal positivism or the opposing viewpoint (e.g. Quincy Wright, Luther Harris Evans, Duncan Hall, Norman Bentwich, Hersh Lauterpacht, et al). They spent the next two or three decades arguing about the precise legal status of the LoN and its resolutions. The Covenant of the League was silent about those two particular subjects and it was never really answered, until the four Status of South West Africa/Namibia cases were addressed by the ICJ in the 50s, 60s, and 70s. The PCIJ was created outside the framework of the LoN. Its Statute didn’t even provide the Council or Assembly of the LoN the necessary legal standing to appear before the Court as a party to a mandate interpretation dispute. In the Article 3, Paragraph 2, of the Treaty of Lausanne (Frontier between Turkey and Iraq) advisory opinion, the PCIJ held that resolutions of the Council of the League of Nations were merely recommendations, unless all of the parties concerned had agreed to accept and carrying them out. States were only bound by the terms of their own acceptance, subject to any prior reservations they might have expressed. The situation was made even more unclear, when the Palestinian High Court of Justice adopted the customary British dualist doctrine of Parliamentary Supremacy and the legal presumption against self-executing treaties. It ruled that the Mandate was only enforceable in the Courts of Palestine insofar as its provisions had been codified in the Privy Council Order of 1922 or some other specific piece of enabling legislation. By way of contrast, the ICJ held that the mandates were binding, mixed legal instruments, comprised in part of an international agreement, and a State Constitution. But in a controversial 1960 South West Africa (Liberia v. South Africa and Ethiopia v. South Africa) opinion, the Court ruled that third-party LoN member states only had the standing to bring disputes over violations of their own rights under the terms of the Mandates, and that they had no standing at all to intervene on behalf of the inhabitants, when the inhabitant’s human rights had been violated.

        Article 104 and Article 2(5) of the UN Charter together with the associated Treaty Regarding the Rights and Immunities of the United Nations Organization endowed it with its own international legal personality from the very outset. That included the right to pursue claims in international courts on its own behalf; and the capacity to conclude international agreements with third parties, which the member states were legally bound to respect. See the AO in “Reparation for Injuries Suffered in the Service of the United Nations” http://www.icj-cij.org/docket/index.php?p1=3&p2=4&case=4&p3=4

        The USA and the USSR decided during the Yalta Conference to scrap the system of mandates altogether. They no longer met acceptable international standards regarding respect for “the principle of equal rights and self-determination of peoples” that they, and many of the other Allied Powers, had privately agreed to enshrine in the new UN Charter. They also suspected (correctly) that the safeguards contained in the mandates would be nearly unenforceable after the final session of the Assembly of the LoN. Chapter 11 was deliberately included in the UN Charter in order to preempt any arguments or lingering doubts concerning possible conflicting obligations of a member state under the terms of a mandate. For its own part, the General Assembly adopted resolution 24(I) several months before the final Assembly of the LoN. That final Assembly acknowledged resolutions 9(I) and 24(I) in one of its own final resolutions. It noted that the UN had its own unique system of oversight for non-self-governing territories and that it would not be automatically absorbing or inheriting the old LoN system or the LoN’s obligations. It also acknowledged that all of the mandatories had unilaterally pledged to fulfill the terms of the mandates that were still applicable, until trusteeship agreements were concluded or the territories and peoples in question attained their independence. If you check the verbatim minutes of the Security Council meeting that I provided in my other comments, you’ll see that when Rabbi Silver tried to conflate the British government’s obligations with those of the UN that Ambassador Austin quickly cut him off and explained that resolution 24(1) made it perfectly clear that the UN did not automatically inherit any responsibility or obligation in connection with the Palestine mandate.

        While the Jewish Agency wrote a letter to the San Fransisco Conference requesting a safeguarding clause in the Charter that would prevent any UN trusteeship agreement from altering the rights conferred on the Jewish people under the terms of the Balfour Declaration and the LoN mandate, Articles 1, 18, 80, and 85 of the UN Charter did just exactly the opposite thing. They empowered the General Assembly to preempt, alter, or terminate any rights under a mandate. On June 22, 1946 the Indian government requested that the discriminatory treatment of Indians in the Union of South Africa be included on the agenda of the very first session of the General Assembly. See A/RES/44(I) Treatment of Indians in the Union of South Africa http://www.un.org/ga/search/view_doc.asp?symbol=A/RES/44%28I%29 and A/RES/65(I) Future status of South West Africa http://www.un.org/ga/search/view_doc.asp?symbol=A/RES/65%28I%29

        In the 1970 Namibia Advisory Opinion the ICJ explained that the LoN could terminate a mandate for a material breach and that the General Assembly had inherited that particular power and could do the very same thing, without consulting the Security Council. It also rejected South Africa’s request that it hear additional arguments regarding the claim that “separate development” (aka the policy of “apartheid”) did not violate the content or intent of Article 22 of the LoN Covenant regarding the well-being and development of the non-white communities. The Court said it wasn’t necessary, since conditioning full participation in the political, social, or economic life of the country on the basis of ethnicity violated South Africa’s obligations under Article 1 of the UN Charter regarding “the principle of equal rights and self-determination of peoples” without regard to the content or intent of Article 22 of the LoN Covenant.

      • Brewer
        August 8, 2015, 6:52 pm
  19. Mooser
    August 7, 2015, 11:34 am

    Thanks, Hostage!

    • Brewer
      August 8, 2015, 6:53 pm

      My thanks also Hostage and DGF. You have opened seams I hadn’t excavated and I look forward to examining this very important information in detail when I tame the stormwater in my back yard. I can even feel a slight urge to re-vitalize my old blog with some of the material you point to.
      The History was my primary interest and it lead me into sympathy for the Palestinians via my then-growing understanding of our own indigenous situation here in NZ. The moment the word “indigenous” inserted itself into my Historical meanderings around Palestine I became more devoted to current events and almost ceased writing about the History .
      You chaps have reminded me that I once believed strongly that the key to resolution lies in promoting the real History, destroying the puerile Zionist narrative that has become embedded in the common consciousness.
      Its a slow process but as I look back on the past few decades there has been progress. Quite a few old memes have bit the dust. “Land without a people for a people without a land” for example. “Nakba” is now a term so well-established that we can probably look forward to Nakba studies entering the curriculum in better Universities.
      Well done.

  20. Hostage
    August 8, 2015, 3:35 am

    The proposal of other members of the Committee for a union under artificial arrangements designed to achieve essential economic and social unity after first creating political and geographical disunity by partition, is impracticable, unworkable, and could not possibly provide for two reasonably viable States.

    I tend to agree. In the Plan of Partition with Economic Union the two States are effectively glued together by the Joint Economic Board, not to mention that they are also glued together by infrastructure, resources and geography (see the map above). It seems to me bizarre that they should at the same time be independent sovereign states with two citizenships, hence two loyalties, two immigration policies, two armies, and two foreign policies. There is no mechanism for resolving differences between the States, apart from the casting vote of foreigners in the Joint Economic Board, diplomacy, or war.

    No, the Economic Plan would have been concluded by the UN Commission. Like resolution 181(II) itself, it would have contained the standard compromissory clause granting the ICJ jurisdiction to settle any disputes, unless the parties concerned agreed to some alternate method of arbitration or established their own special regional courts by mutual agreement, just like the EC.

    You’re overlooking the fact that Europe set-up an Economic Union in the aftermath of two world wars and there were a couple of dozen competing loyalties, immigration policies, armies, foreign ministers, and a not so Cold War going on at the time. Greece has not yet ceased to be a “state” with the right of self-determination and self-government, despite widespread reports that it cannot be deemed “reasonably viable” by its EC neighbors.

  21. Hostage
    August 8, 2015, 6:18 am

    The Assembly can only make a recommendation to Member States, but it is clearly expecting its recommendation to be carried out, asking the Security Council and the inhabitants of Palestine to implement the Plan, and asking everyone in the world not to hinder it.

    The General Assembly didn’t start the Korean conflict, but it certainly wasn’t limited to merely recommending the ensuing UN police action conducted under the auspices of its “Uniting for Peace” resolution.

    We are talking about a plan that did make some recommendations, but the term “shall” appears in it more than 200 times. Resolution 181(II) was cataloged in 1950 by the Secretary General as part of a survey of legal instruments containing minority protection treaties E/CN.4/367, Date: 7 April 1950 (see Chapter III The United Nations Charter And The Treaties Concluded After The War, resolution 181(II) of 29 November 1947, “The Future Government of Palestine”, pages 22-23).

    Resolution 181(II) is also cited in the “Table of Treaties” in Thomas D. Musgrave, Self-determination and National Minorities, Oxford Monographs in International Law, Oxford University Press, 1997, ISBN 0198298986, Page xxxviii

    The claim that the General Assembly can only make recommendations is a proposition that the ICJ has rejected each and every time it has come up in a case before the Court. Among other Articles the Court has cited Article 18 of the Charter as example, which says:

    “Decisions of the General Assembly on important questions shall be made by a two- thirds majority of the members present and voting. These questions shall include: . . . questions relating to the operation of the trusteeship system. Decisions on other questions, including the determination of additional categories of questions to be decided by a two-thirds majority, shall be made by a majority of the members present and voting.”

    The rules of treaty interpretation in Part III of the UN Convention on The Law of Treaties do not permit member states to ratify the term “Decisions” and then turn around and claim the General Assembly can only “recommend” things to them. They remain bound by the terms of the Charter that they agreed to accept in the first place.

    Articles 81 and 85 of the UN Charter explicitly allowed the General Assembly to place non-self governing territories under direct UN administration or the administration of another state and to adopt, approve or amend the terms of the trusteeships it administers or those that it assigns to member or other states. See the separate comment for some examples

    Nothing prevented the General Assembly from partitioning Palestine and placing it under the authority of its own Palestine Commission, effective 29 November 1947, the day the transition to independence officially began. After all, the Council of the League of Nations had partitioned Palestine into two states via Article 25 of one of its resolutions. France ceded the Sanjak of Alexadretta back to Turkey and proceeded to partition and repartition the Syrian mandate into at least five “states”, e.g. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/French_Mandate_for_Syria_and_the_Lebanon#/media/File:French_Mandate_for_Syria_and_the_Lebanon_map_en.svg

    Article 81 of the Charter says:
    The trusteeship agreement shall in each case include the terms under which the trust territory will be administered and designate the authority which will exercise the administration of the trust territory. Such authority, hereinafter called the administering authority, may be one or more states or the Organization itself.
    Article 85
    1. The functions of the United Nations with regard to trusteeship agreements for all areas not designated as strategic, including the approval of the terms of the trusteeship agreements and of their alteration or amendment, shall be exercised by the General Assembly.
    2. The Trusteeship Council, operating under the authority of the General Assembly, shall assist the General Assembly in carrying out these functions.

  22. Hostage
    August 8, 2015, 6:29 am

    Re: The Assembly can only make a recommendation to Member States

    No, member states could merely recommend the terms of a Trusteeship Agreement to the General Assembly. But only the General Assembly could approve one. Here’s a resolution that approved 8 of them in one fell swoop http://www.un.org/en/ga/search/view_doc.asp?symbol=A/RES/63%28I%29

    Remember those were treaties and also the constitution of a state.

    ICJ President Taslim Olawale Elias wrote:

    Article 18(2) lists a number of “important questions” on which “decisions” of the General Assembly “shall be made by a two-thirds majority of the members present and voting.” Among such questions are recommendations regarding the maintenance of international peace and security, the election of the non-permanent members of the Security Council and of the Economic and Social Council and of the Trusteeship Council, the admission of new Members, the suspension of the rights and privileges of membership, the expulsion of Members, questions relating to the operation of the trusteeship system, and budgetary questions. Decisions on all other questions “shall be made by a majority of the members present and voting.” Article 10 provides that the General Assembly “may discuss any questions or any matters within the scope of the present Charter” and may make “recommendations” to UN members or to the Security Council or to both. It is in the light of these that Hans Kelsen has observed that “there is hardly any international matter which the General Assembly is not competent to discuss and on which it is not competent to make recommendations.”
    The perennial question has been: What legal effects have the General Assembly resolutions? On the correct answer to this question must surely depend our assessment of the value of those resolutions in the development of modern international law. It seems clear that, as far as General Assembly recommendations in respect of the nine specifically enumerated matters in Article 18(2) are concerned, its “decisions” in the form of “recommendations” are binding upon all concerned once they have been adopted by a two-thirds majority. As regards all other matters within the competence of the Assembly, a simple majority is all that is required by Article 18(3) of the Charter. And, yet, despite these apparently clear provisions, problems have arisen in connection with their interpretation.

    — Africa and the Development of International Law, Martinus Nijhoff Publishers, 1988, pages 69 & 70 link to books.google.com

    The Security Council was still arguing about the status of the former enemy state of Italy and whether or not it even constituted a “peace loving state” eligible for membership in the UN until 1955. But by then, the General Assembly had long since concluded a legally binding Trusteeship Agreement with Italy and had authored a constitution for Somaliland – in the form of GA resolutions – that all of the member states, the Security Council, and the inhabitants were bound to respect under the explicit terms of the UN Charter that I cited in my comment above.

    The Trusteeship Agreements for the British and French Cameroons provided for fundamental human rights of the inhabitants. In the ICJ case concerning the Northern Cameroons v Great Britain, Cameroon argued that the British government had violated the terms of the UN trusteeship agreement in connection with the plebiscites regarding the unions with other states. The Court ruled that Cameroon had no legal standing, since it was bound by the final determination made by the General Assembly regarding the status of the two parts of the territory joining the Republic of Cameroon and Nigeria respectively in its resolution 1608 (XV). So, it appears the General Assembly can indeed partition or integrate territories into new political units against the wishes of some segments of the population, just so long as the resulting states honor fundamental human rights and the principles of the UN Charter.

    As Judge Elias noted, the UN Charter is a multilateral treaty that gives the General Assembly the power to adopt decisions and conduct international arbitration or adjudication of nearly any question falling within its functional area of competence. It could legally terminate a mandate; conclude a trusteeship agreement to serve as the new fundamental law or constitution of the successor state(s) to a mandatory regime; and it had the power to place a trusteeship under direct UN administration when any administrator was in material breach of a Charter, mandate, or trusteeship agreement. See for example the text of A/RES/2145 (XXI) regarding Namibialink to un.org and the ICJ findings of fact regarding South Africa’s objections to those General Assembly powers in the 1970 Namibia case. link to icj-cij.org
    On 20 June, 1962 the UN General Assembly adopted a decision to accept a UN commission’s proposal regarding the partition of Ruanda-Urundi into two independent states, Rwanda and Burundi, and to establish an Economic Union between the two. See UN resolution 1746 (XVI) and compare that situation to the UNSCOP proposal and resolution 181(II):
    link to un.org
    link to un.org

    The terms “resolution” and “non-binding” do not appear in the text of the Covenant of the League of Nations or in the UN Charter. The latter merely discusses “decisions” taken by the General Assembly, the Security Council, and other organs. The Namibia Advisory Opinion cited a legal study by the Secretary General which explained that the member states had a treaty obligation under the terms of Article 24 and 25 of the Charter to accept “decisions” of the Security Council taken on their behalf and to carry them out. In the Reparations case the Court cited the grant or delegation of legal competence under Article 104 and the obligation under Article 2(5) to provide the UN Organization with every assistance in any action its takes in accordance with the Charter as the basis for the right of the Organization to pursue legal claims against member and non-member states in the Courts on the basis of General Assembly resolutions. http://www.icj-cij.org/docket/index.php?p1=3&p2=4&case=4&p3=4

    Another legal study performed by the Secretary General on the meaning of the term “decisions” in Article 18 of the Charter (pertaining to the powers and functions of the General Assembly) concluded that it had the same meaning as the occurrences of the term decision in the chapters on the powers and functions of the Security Council:

    “22. As to the text of the Charter itself, it may be of some interest to note the manner in which the expression ‘decisions is used in the various Articles regarding voting in the Assembly and in the Councils. With respect to the General Assembly, the term ‘decisions as used in Article 18, refers to all types of action which the General Assembly takes by a vote while performing its functions under the Charter; whether it makes ‘recommendations’ under Articles 10, 11, 13, 14 and others, or takes ‘decisions’ to admit a State to membership in the United Nations under Article 4 or to expel a Member from the Organization under Article 6, or acts on reports from the Councils, or gives its ‘approval’ to the budget of the Organization under-Article 17 and so forth.

    “23 Similarly the term “decisions” of the Security Council” in Article 27 of the Charter refers to all types of action which the Security Council may take, whether it does so under Chapter V on the procedure and organisation of work of the Council, or under Chapter VI in relation to the pacific settlement of disputes, or whether it makes “recommendations” or “decisions” under Chapter VII. The same remarks apply to “decisions of the Economic and Social Council”, referred to in Article 67, and to “decisions of the Trusteeship Council”, referred to in Article 89 of the Charter.

    “24. These observations show that the term ‘decisions’ in the Charter Articles relating to voting is used in a broad sense to cover all types of action by United Nations organs. The text of the Charter, however, furnishes no specific answer to the question whether these ‘decisions’ are only the final decisions of these organs on matters submitted to them, or whether this term also applies to procedural decisions of these organs made prior to the adoption of final resolutions.”

    Even in cases where nothing more than a recommendation was involved, the Court has applied the standard contract law principles of “offer” and “acceptance” and held that states become and remain bound by the terms of their own acceptance of a resolution. Resolution 181(II) actually contained a treaty instrument that required a unilateral treaty declaration acknowledging acceptance of the existing treaty obligations and the new minority and religious rights protection plan. Israel and Palestine have both provided unilateral declarations that were acknowledged by the General Assembly.

    • CigarGod
      August 8, 2015, 7:42 am

      Fascinating reading, Hostage.
      The way you illuminate a path to justice for Palestine…or other similar situations, makes me believe liberation will come someday. Not just for a people, but for the collective mind of humanity.

    • talknic
      August 9, 2015, 8:58 pm

      Further to “The Assembly can only make a recommendation to Member States”

      Relevant International Law, Conventions and/or the UN Charter re-affirmed or emphasized in a resolution or anywhere they appear, are by their very nature binding.

      The UN/UNSC/UNHCR/UNHRC/et al have recommended and afforded Israel hundreds of opportunities to fulfill the binding legal requirements of statehood, conventions Israel has ratified and UN Membership voluntarily undertaken by that state. Israel ridiculously claims the hundreds of reminders of its unfulfilled legal obligations as UN bias.

      Chapt VI resolutions : The US abstains from voting on UN/UNSC/et al resolutions re Israel re-affirming or emphasizing pre-determined/existing International Law, Conventions and/or the UN Charter. UN Member states cannot vote against or veto pre-determined/existing International law, conventions and/or the UN Charter.

      Chapt VII resolutions : Can be abstained from or voted against or vetoed (by one of the major powers) because unlike the Law, Convention, UN Charter which have already been adopted and accepted by all UN Members, actions are not pre-determined nor do they exist until after such resolutions have been adopted.

  23. talknic
    August 10, 2015, 11:19 pm

    Putting the legal arguments into easily understood layman’s terms is nigh impossible. Zionistas have done their utmost to muddy the waters beyond recognition with all manner of deceitful tactics. E.g., http://wp.me/PDB7k-Y#JFNA

    By far easier to show through just a few easily to read and irrefutable official documents that the Jewish Agency are inveterate liars and successive Israeli Governments and Zionist organizations carry on that vile tradition to this very day. Once the seeds of doubt as to their integrity have been sown, like buying a VW, one begins to see their lies in almost everything they say.

    ————– having said as much :-) ———

    Surely there’s a place for persistent objection amongst all of this

    • Hostage
      August 11, 2015, 8:47 pm

      Putting the legal arguments into easily understood layman’s terms is nigh impossible.

      Perhaps it is for some issues, but others are pretty clear cut. For example, in the Customs Régime Between Germany And Austria (Protocol Of March 19th, 1931) A/B41 the PCIJ advised that a proposed customs union with Germany, like the one contained in resolution 181(II), violated Austria’s obligation under Article 88 of the Treaty of Peace concluded at St Germain to maintain its independence. http://www.icj-cij.org/pcij/serie_AB/AB_41/01_Regime_douanier_Avis_consultatif.pdf

      So, David’s analysis is correct. The UN resolution was never intended to create two states that were independent of one another, or it would not have incorporated a plan for their economic union. They were obtaining their independence from the “mandate regime”, but taking on new international obligations under a “customs regime” and the “special regime” for the City of Jerusalem.

      • talknic
        August 11, 2015, 10:39 pm

        @ Hostage August 11, 2015, 8:47 pm … Understood. However the layman isn’t going to wade thru the example

        I believe the shorter, simpler and far more effective path to giving the layman a handle on the situation is to show the Jewish Agency, Zionist Movement, Jewish People’s Council, subsequent successive Israeli Governments, Zionist organizations and their apologists were and still are lying.

        For example. The Grief/ Stone nonsense on the LoN Mandate for Palestine. Can be easily dismissed by pointing the layman to Article 7 of the mandate. No Zionist apologist has a come back.

        Same for the Israel didn’t proclaim any borders BS. The Israeli Govt plea for recognition has no come back

      • Hostage
        August 12, 2015, 6:39 pm

        Same for the Israel didn’t proclaim any borders BS. The Israeli Govt plea for recognition has no come back

        The text of Resolution 181 (II) only outlined provisional frontiers and explicitly assigned the task of deciding upon the final location of the borders to the UN Palestine Commission, not to the determination of the states themselves or to “recognition” from member states:

        “On its arrival in Palestine the Commission shall proceed to carry out measures for the establishment of the frontiers of the Arab and Jewish States and the City of Jerusalem in accordance with the general lines of the recommendations of the General Assembly on the partition of Palestine. Nevertheless, the boundaries as described in Part II of this Plan are to be modified in such a way that village areas as a rule will not be divided by state boundaries unless pressing reasons make that necessary. “

        So, its argumentative to say that there was any legal basis for Israel to unilaterally claim the periphery of those provisional lines on the map attached to the resolution, since they were not finalized. Most readers do not realize that the UK concluded 40 treaty agreements on behalf of the Palestinian Arabs and Jews and had the right to submit the question of Palestine to the General Assembly for arbitration and that under the rules of customary international law, its decision would be considered “final” and not subject to any appeal, except to the ICJ. Even if the plan of partition had been declared null and void by the Court, the rules of customary law, including the principle of uti possidetis of 1810) regarding the formation of two or more states on territory formerly administered by a single metropolitan State would have transformed the administrative boundaries established under the 1939 White Paper and the 1940 Land Transfer Ordinance into international borders at the moment of independence. See the zones in the map here: http://www.plands.org/articles/images/029-02.jpg and the ruling in The Frontier Dispute (Burkina Faso/Republic of Mali) case http://www.icj-cij.org/docket/index.php?sum=359&p1=3&p2=3&case=69&p3=5

      • talknic
        August 12, 2015, 11:52 pm

        @ Hostage …. Again understood

        My point in mentioning the plea for recognition is not to validate Israel’s claim but to demonstrate the deceit involved by the Jewish Agency et al

  24. David Gerald Fincham
    August 13, 2015, 1:56 am

    hostage and talknic:

    The significance of the formal request for recognition is that, in order to achieve recognition by the US, Israel was forced to LIMIT THE AREA of its claimed sovereignty: “…is proclaimed WITHIN THE FRONTIERS….”

    • talknic
      August 13, 2015, 3:01 am

      It appears the same plea was issued to all states

      Certainly to Russia and Australia and I dare say every other state…

      Russia 17 May 1948

      Letter from Mr. Molotov stated: “Confirming receipt of your telegram of May 16, in which you inform the Government of the USSR of the proclamation, on the basis of the resolution of the United Nations Assembly of November 29, 1947, of the creation in Palestine of the independent State of Israel and make re-quest for the recognition of the State of Israel and its provisional government by the USSR. I inform yon in this letter that the Govern-ment of the USSR has decided to recognize officially the Stale of Israel and its Provisional Government.”

      Australia 28 January 1949 “… on the basis of the resolution of the United Nations Assembly of November 29, 1947…”

      New Zealand 29 January 1949 “It is the understanding of the New Zealand Government that the settlement of boundaries and other outstanding questions will be effected in accordance with the resolution of the General Assembly of the United Nations of 11 December 1948.”

      • David Gerald Fincham
        August 13, 2015, 3:12 am

        It looks to me that the telegrams to other states replaced “within frontiers..” to “on the basis of…”. That’s probably what Ben-Gurion would have done, given that he never had any intention of declaring borders.

        The New Zealand government probably read between the lines ands realized what he was up to.

      • Hostage
        August 13, 2015, 9:07 am

        It looks to me that the telegrams to other states replaced “within frontiers..” to “on the basis of…”. That’s probably what Ben-Gurion would have done, given that he never had any intention of declaring borders.

        Yes, that’s correct. The full minutes of the declassified People’s Council meetings on 13 & 14 May 1948 regarding various issues, including the Declaration, were published years ago in the Palestine Yearbook of International Law. Ben Gurion rejected the phrasing “within the framework of the UN resolution” and insisted that a circumlocution be employed instead (e.g. on the strength of the UN resolution). The minute someone cites a page from the Brill Yearbooks, it disappears from the pages available for preview in Google books. But it was the same meeting in which the threats from Secretaries Marshall and Lovett to shutdown the United Jewish Appeal (in the event that the Jewish Agency tried to conquer the Arab State) was discussed.

      • talknic
        August 13, 2015, 5:43 am

        @ DGF Not mentioning borders in the declaration only meant they weren’t mentioned. They are a pre-requisite for statehood

        “ARTICLE 1 The state as a person of international law should possess the following qualifications: a ) a permanent population; b ) a defined territory

        No borders for Israel, but demanded of Palestine .. http://www.jcpa.org/art/becker2.htm

        Far easier to point to the holes in the Israeli arguments than to go thru page upon page of legalese

      • David Gerald Fincham
        August 13, 2015, 7:36 am

        SHOULD, not MUST. There must be many cases when states have been recognized when they still have border disputes with neighbors.

        As to the question of independence and sovereignty mentioned in the jcpa article, it is incorrect, as I have learned from hostage during this discussion. The UN declined to define what is meant by the word ‘state’, or to distinguish it from ‘nation’. It was certainly prepared to admit as Member States the Jewish and Arab states of the Plan, although they were not really independent of each other and there were severe restrictions placed on the extent of their sovereignty.

        I have always understood that the decision by one state to recognize another state is a sovereign decision of that state, which cannot be restricted by ‘traditional legal criteria’ as claimed by jcpa. Anyway, Palestine has been recognized by a large number of states, and nobody except jcpa seem to be claiming that those states have violated international law by so doing.

        Perhaps hostage has something to say on this?

      • Hostage
        August 13, 2015, 10:15 pm

        Perhaps hostage has something to say on this?

        LoL! I always have something to say on that subject. In both international law and the US Code, the term “state” is just an ordinary dictionary word, not a legal term of art. See HICHINO UYENO v. ACHESON http://www.leagle.com/decision/195160696FSupp510_1483.xml/HICHINO%20UYENO%20v.%20ACHESON

        In James Crawford’s “Creation of States in International Law he notes:

        “Although the United Kingdom and Indian Governments thought a definition of the term “State” a prerequisite for the proposed “Draft Declaration on the Rights and Duties of States,” [1949] the International Law Commission (ILC) concluded:

        that no useful purpose would be served by an effort to define the term ‘State… In the Commissions draft, the term… is used in the sense commonly accepted in international practice. Nor did the Commission think that it was called upon to set forth… the qualifications to be possessed by a community in order that it may become a State.

        This rather bland rejoinder concealed considerable disagreement as to the definition of both ‘State’ and ‘Nation’ and their relationship.” See the 2nd Edition, 2006, page 31.

        As I’ve noted there were dozens of “political units” that had been called “states” in international practice for decades that were neither considered sovereign nor independent.

        To confuse matters even more, in many cases, the US Federal Courts have ruled that these disputed, non-sovereign, or non-independent states are nonetheless still considered “states” for the purposes of the “Act of State” doctrine and the US “Foreign Sovereign Immunity Act” . See the Ruling on the sovereignty of the British-controlled Gulf “Trucial States” in Occidental Petroleum Corp. v. Buttes Gas & Oil Co., 331 F. Supp. 92 (C.D. Cal. 1971) http://law.justia.com/cases/federal/district-courts/FSupp/331/92/1401305/

        Of course the UN Charter says that membership is based upon “sovereign equality.” without explaining that applied to the non-sovereign founding members too.

        Here’s what the official US State Department Digest of International Law has to say about “independence”:
        “A state in the international sense is generally described as a recognized member of the family of nations, an international person. Authorities differ in respect to the qualifications for such statehood, but there is general agreement on certain basic requirements. Independence is not essential. The requisite personality, in the international sense, is seen when the entity claiming to be a State has in fact its own distinctive association with the members of the international society, as by treaties, which, howsoever concluded in its behalf, mark the existence of definite relationships between itself and other contracting parties”. — Marjorie M. Whiteman, Digest of International Law, vol. 1 (Washington, DC: U. S. Government Printing Office, 1963) page 223

        If you’d like to see a more complete discussion of the subject, then you should read the discussion between myself and Matt M. @ Opinio Juris under the Article “No, Going to the ICC Is Not “Lawfare” by Palestine”. The commentors included the some PhDs and a Deputy Legal Counselor to the Israeli UN delegation (who is also a doctoral candidate), but none of them really had a grasp of the subject matter. http://opiniojuris.org/2015/01/22/no-going-icc-not-palestinian-lawfare/

      • Hostage
        August 13, 2015, 9:35 am

        @ DGF Not mentioning borders in the declaration only meant they weren’t mentioned. They are a pre-requisite for statehood

        “ARTICLE 1 The state as a person of international law should possess the following qualifications: a ) a permanent population; b ) a defined territory“

        Correction: The Montevideo Convention never said that those are a pre-requisite for statehood. Those characteristics were only listed as desiderata. In fact, some of the signatories, like Nicaragua, have carried on prolonged legal battles over their borders, which are still in dispute today.

        I’ve pointed out that the term state was deliberately left undefined in the UN Charter. I’ve cited the statement made for the official record by (future ICJ Judge) UN Ambassador Dr. Philip Jessup regarding Israel’s application for membership in the United Nations, wherein he stressed that:

        . . . ‘we already have, among the members of the United Nations, some political entities which do not possess full sovereign power to form their own international policy, which traditionally has been considered characteristic of a State. We know however, that neither at San Francisco nor subsequently has the United Nations considered that complete freedom to frame and manage one’s own foreign policy was an essential requisite of United Nations membership…. …The reason for which I mention the qualification of this aspect of the traditional definition of a State is to underline the point that the term “State”, as used and applied in Article 4 of the Charter of the United Nations, may not be wholly identical with the term “State” as it is used and defined in classic textbooks on international law.”

        see page 12 of S/PV.383, 2 December 1948 link to un.org

        In the subsequent Continental Shelf case, the ICJ rejected defined territory as a pre-requisite for statehood:

        “There is no rule that the land frontiers of a State must be fully delimited and defined, and often in various places and for long periods they are not, as is shown by the case of the entry of Albania into the League of Nations (Monastery of Saint Naoum, Advisor): Opinion, 1924, P.C.I.J., Series B, No. 9, at p. 10).”

        See pdf file page 60 of 109 link to icj-cij.org

        You can now add Palestine and Israel to that list.

      • Hostage
        August 13, 2015, 10:03 am

        Far easier to point to the holes in the Israeli arguments than to go thru page upon page of legalese

        I happen to think its better to know what the facts are, than to simply react to holes in Zionist propaganda. That can sometimes be far easier than chasing them down every rabbit hole of their choosing.

      • CigarGod
        August 13, 2015, 10:14 am

        Exactly.
        Using documented fact, leaves them no hole to run down. Doesn’t mean they won’t keep head-butting those shadows in the sand.

      • talknic
        August 13, 2015, 8:07 am

        @ David Gerald Fincham “SHOULD, not MUST”

        Without defined territory it is impossible to ascertain who pays taxes, which people belong to which entity, where one’s citizens may settle, if a state has been invaded or not … etc etc etc ..

        “There must be many cases when states have been recognized when they still have border disputes with neighbors”

        They have border disputes because they claim to HAVE borders.

      • RoHa
        August 13, 2015, 11:26 am

        Yes, CigarGod, they will probably just ignore the facts and keep repeating the lies.

        (And I’m shocked!
        “Using documented fact, leaves them no hole to run down. ”
        Please tell me that the comma after the subject clause was just a typo! )

      • CigarGod
        August 13, 2015, 4:05 pm

        No, it means I’m a geezer who lives at 7200 feet…and I have to take 2 breaths for every one of yours. If you are a coastal type;-) Neither does it have anything to do with my cigars. They are organic.

      • Hostage
        August 13, 2015, 8:58 pm

        Yes, CigarGod, they will probably just ignore the facts and keep repeating the lies.

        In some cases I’ve managed to get them to fabricate brand new ones. But that would need to be the subject of another 200+ comment thread.

      • RoHa
        August 14, 2015, 6:26 am

        Well done, Hostage!

    • Sibiriak
      August 13, 2015, 3:24 am

      Simha Flapan gives this account of Israel’s ambiguity regarding borders:

      —————–

      On May 12, there was a debate in the People’s Administration—the thirteen-member provisional government and legislature of the Yishuv—on whether the boundaries of the state should be specified in the Declaration of Independence. Earlier the same evening Ben-Gurion had told colleagues from MAPAI that he did not want to bind himself by any declaration: “If the UN does not come into account in this matter, and they [the Arab states] make war against us and we defeat them…why should we bind ourselves?” By a vote of five to four, the People’s Administration agreed. The boundaries of the state should not be mentioned in the Declaration of Independence. It was left to Ben-Gurion to rewrite Sharett’s draft, which was long and flowery, and “also made mention of the United Nations partition plan.” Ben-Gurion “deleted any reference to the partition plan” and made the text “more vigorous, firm and bold.” […]

      Quite different was the statement that Jewish Agency representative Eliyahu Epstein presented to President Truman that day: “I have the honor to notify you that the state of Israel has been proclaimed as an independent republic with the frontiers approved by the General Assembly of the United Nations in its resolution of November 29, 1947. “ The next day, Epstein cabled Sharett that he had “given unqualified assurances that Israel will respect the boundaries of November 29. This is without prejudice to the requirement of military action.” Chaim Weizmann himself had informed Truman on May 13 that on the morrow “the Jewish state will assume responsibility for preserving law and order within the boundaries of the Jewish state…. and for discharging the obligations of the Jewish state to other nations of the world in accordance with international law” (emphasis added).

      Epstein was probably aware of the discrepancy between the statement to Truman and the decision of the People’s Administration not to mention borders, because he cabled Sharett the same day to explain that he had been advised by friends in the White House to mention the November 29 borders. “Circumstances required that I take title for this act and assume responsibility,” he noted. Indeed, a number of members of the Jewish Agency Executive were embarrassed and concerned by the discrepancy. Berl Locker, the London representative, cabled Sharett on May 21:

      “Very important to publish soonest official declaration that Israel accepts borders laid down 29 November, claims no part territory assigned [to the Arab state] and territories occupied. Defense measures will be restored as soon as peace restored and we shall respect Jerusalem decision. The fact that independence proclamation not explicit this points against us.”

      Abba Eban, then a member of the Jewish Agency delegation to the UN, was also worried, since the United States had accorded only de facto and not de jure recognition. He cabled Sharett from New York on May 24:

      “Ambiguity in proclamation regarding frontiers much commented [by] delegations and exploited [by] opponents, possibly delaying recognition and restricting those received. We urge official statement defining frontiers Israel in accordance November resolution, stressing this implied in references to proclamation…”

      It was the task of Moshe Sharett, as Israel’s first foreign minister, to win support and recognition for the new state. A few months after independence, Sharett offered the following explanation for Israel’s ambiguous position: The partition plan had assumed (1) that either partition would be peacefully implemented or there would be UN intervention, (2) that a separate Arab state would be established in Palestine, and (3) that an international regime would be established in Jerusalem. He went on to point out that none of these assumptions had been realized. As a result, Israel had to demand changes in the November 29 borders and the right to defend those borders. This argument was skillfully used for propaganda purposes, but it was deceptive: The Jewish Agency had never intended to allow the establishment of an independent Arab state economically linked to Israel.

      “The Birth of Israel Myths and Realities” (1987) pp.34-6

      • talknic
        August 13, 2015, 8:32 am

        @ Sibiriak Not mentioning borders only means they weren’t mentioned. It doesn’t mean they didn’t exist.

        No need to cite Flapan either, correct tho it may be …. because from the horse’s mouth http://www.mfa.gov.il/MFA/MFAArchive/1990_1999/1999/4/Shelley%20Kleiman%20-%20The%20State%20of%20Israel%20Declares%20Ind

        It’s bizarre that Hasbaristas even offer Ben-Gurion’s stance as evidence of why Israel didn’t mention borders in the declaration. It’s a blatant attempt to deceive!

        How could Israel have determined who owed the state taxes etc etc etc etc etc …. etc? Fact is, they couldn’t. That’s why defined territories are a requirement of statehood

        So their argument is nonsense. Furthermore in its statement to the UNSC 22nd May 1948 the Israeli Government said it had military control over territories “outside the State of Israel” so they must have known the extent of Israeli territories!

        I reiterate, it is far more effective to show via a few simple official statements by the Jewish Agency and successive Israeli Governments that they are liars than it is to present copious legal arguments which the layman must labour thru.

      • Sibiriak
        August 13, 2015, 10:02 am

        Talknic: Not mentioning borders only means they weren’t mentioned. It doesn’t mean they didn’t exist. […]
        —————

        De facto borders certainly did come into existence; by the end of the 1947-48 military conflict, they were determined by the armistice agreement, the de facto border on the West Bank becoming known as the “Green Line.”

        Over time, an international political and legal consensus was solidified wherein the Green Line was to become the basis for final boundaries via negotiation, with mutually agreed adjustments.

        How was it, then, that Israel’s acquisition of territory by military force during 1947-8 could ever be recognized as Israeli territory under international law, rather than as occupied Palestinian territory, as has been territory taken by Israel in 1967?

        Hostage appears to give an answer to that question:

        “[…]The Plan of Partition for the two states was only one of the many chapters in the recommended “Plan for the Future Government Of Palestine”, UN GA resolution 181(II). It was never implemented due to the non-international armed conflict in Palestine. Israel was created by its own act of secession during a civil war, so international law was largely inapplicable. Both Israel and Palestine made subsequent declarations acknowledging their acceptance of the terms of the chapter on minority and religious rights.

        Both the Security Council and the General Assembly suspended the work of the Palestine Commission after the Israeli UDI and made the Office of the UN Mediator the responsible organ for negotiating a settlement of the Question of Palestine, i.e. borders and refugees.

        The Security Council eventually ordered the Mediator to establish “permanent armistice lines of demarcation” as a provisional measure under the auspices of its Chapter VII powers and directed the parties concerned to apply and observe the armistice agreements pending a final negotiated settlement. Those were binding international agreements and internationally recognized lines of demarcation that the UN and all other parties are obliged to respect.

        At the Security Council’s 433rd meeting, the Israeli foreign minister, Abba Eban, stated that the armistices were “a provisional settlement which can only be replaced by a peace agreement”. That certainly has not happened yet. He continued:

        The armistice lines do not merely separate armed forces. They mark the clearly defined areas of full civil jurisdiction. The Government, the courts, the legislatures, the security authorities of each respective State operate smoothly and unchallenged up to the appropriate armistice line. These lines thus have the normal characteristics of provisional frontiers until such time as a new process of negotiation and agreement determines the final territorial settlement. They are also stabilized by the mutual undertakings of the parties and by the fullest international sanction for as long as the Armistice Agreements are valid.

        The Armistice Agreements are not peace treaties. They do not prejudice the final territorial settlements. On the other hand, the provisional settlement established by the Armistice Agreements is unchallengeable until a new process of negotiation and agreement has been successfully consummated.

        — link to un.org

        Israel’s claims to East Jerusalem and the settlement blocks in the OPT that “Israel will retain under any conceivable settlement” are illegal nonsense, but the claims of the parties concerned to the territory occupied in accordance with the armistice agreements are unchallengeable.” (emphasis added)

        http://mondoweiss.net/2011/11/48-is-beginning-to-replace-67-in-discourse-even-at-uva#sthash.VAXLddhP.dpuf

      • Hostage
        August 13, 2015, 4:23 pm

        Hostage appears to give an answer to that question

        A clarification is in order regarding that short-hand comment (as to why everyone always talks about the 4 June 1967 lines instead of the 1948 lines). I’ve commented so many times about the “many chapters” and legal aspects of the saga regarding the UN Plan for the Future Government for Palestine. Long story short, its because of UN GA resolution 186 (S2) and UN SC resolution 242. I happen to think the UN can legally enforce either the armistice agreements of the partition plan if it ever decides to do so.

        On many occasions I’ve pointed out that Israeli officials have engaged in an almost schizophrenic historical narrative regarding the establishment of their state. The comment you cited and quoted reflects the official position taken by Israel in 1949. I don’t happen to agree with it in many important respects (that I’d previously mentioned elsewhere) and they themselves have unilaterally declared resolution 181 (II) and the Armistice Agreements null and void since then. I’ve pointed out that the Security Council can’t overrule resolution 181 (II), but it obviously can recommend a provisional settlement of its own or a final one that has the General Assembly’s blessing. I’ve also pointed out that I think the international law doctrine of uti possidetis would have transformed any administrative boundaries into international ones on 14 May 1948, even if it had only been a civil war between two or three non-sovereign, non-independent states governed by the same international regimes up until that time. And I most definitely know that the international rules of non-recognition apply to any entity whose creation is conjoined to ethnic cleansing. I’ve commented that a just settlement for the refugees can only mean that those who wish to return can do so, and those who prefer compensation instead be paid a fair rate. The prohibitions against war crimes and crimes against humanity dealing with forced displacement are jus cogens and the conflicting terms of any treaty concluded between Israel and Palestine would be null and void in accordance with the customary rule reflected in Article 53 of the law of Treaties. The right of displaced persons to return is applicable to both international and non-international armed conflicts.

        I sat down a long time ago and started reading the verbatim minutes of the lengthy and numerous hearings on Israel’s application for membership in the UN to see how many times the various representatives, including Israeli officials, stated for the record that Israel had been created by the UN resolution. I gave up about half-way through the exercise, when I realized that the only states which weren’t on my list were the other parties to the conflict. I’ve cited Mr. Abba Eban’s undertakings and declarations from the verbatim records of the hearings on Israel’s membership application, which were noted in the text and footnotes of the resolution that admitted it as a member state. http://unispal.un.org/UNISPAL.NSF/0/83E8C29DB812A4E9852560E50067A5AC

        He never objected to any of those claims, although he was present, and he even made a few extraordinary ones himself, including one which said “Israel was the only State in the world which had sprung into existence at the summons of the international community.” http://unispal.un.org/UNISPAL.NSF/0/1DB943E43C280A26052565FA004D8174

        In fact, many other states had already been created by international peace conferences and international organizations.

        The Israelis changed their tune and sang a different song in public, after Israel had been admitted to the UN. D.P. O’Connell documented the fact, when he wrote about the subsequent claim they advanced during an international conference on frozen bank accounts and public debts held in Jerusalem in 1949. Israeli officials said that Israel had been created by its own act of secession, and not the UN resolution. They reasoned that since there had been no orderly replacement of one state by the others as envisioned in the UN plan, that its rules governing that transfer of sovereignty were inapplicable. See the enties about Israel and Palestine in “The Law of State Succession”, Volume V of the Cambridge Studies in International and Comparative Law, 1956, Hersh Lauterpacht editor, pages 10-11, and 178

      • David Gerald Fincham
        August 13, 2015, 11:26 am

        Sibiriak: thanks so much for that reference which confirms my own research. It is wrong on one point, Ben-Gurion did not “remove all references to the partition plan” from the Declaration. He replaced one explicit mention of the partition plan by a reference to the UN Resolution. In fact he greatly emphasized the importance of the partition resolution compared with previous drafts.

        It was he who introduced the clause “WE…BY VIRTUE OF OUR NATURAL AND HISTORIC RIGHT AND ON THE STRENGTH OF THE RESOLUTION OF THE UNITED NATIONS GENERAL ASSEMBLY, HEREBY DECLARE THE ESTABLISHMENT OF A JEWISH STATE IN ERETZ-ISRAEL, TO BE KNOWN AS THE STATE OF ISRAEL.

        and also: THE STATE OF ISRAEL is prepared to cooperate with the agencies and representatives of the United Nations in implementing the resolution of the General Assembly of the 29th November, 1947, and will take steps to bring about the economic union of the whole of Eretz-Israel.

        The story of the composition of the Declaration, including the three drafts, is on my website at http://religion-science-peace.org/?p=1140.

      • Sibiriak
        August 13, 2015, 11:38 am

        David Gerald Fincham: Sibiriak: thanks so much for that reference which confirms my own research.

        ——————-
        Your welcome. I had to type it in by hand from the book.

        It is wrong on one point, Ben-Gurion did not “remove all references to the partition plan” from the Declaration.

        Yeah, I noticed that too. He probably meant “explicit reference”, but failed to be precise.

      • Hostage
        August 13, 2015, 11:51 am

        It was left to Ben-Gurion to rewrite Sharett’s draft, which was long and flowery, and “also made mention of the United Nations partition plan.” Ben-Gurion “deleted any reference to the partition plan” and made the text “more vigorous, firm and bold.”

        Correction: As I noted in another post the decision was made to mention the resolution and use a circumlocution to avoid calling attention to the fact that its exact terms were being flagrantly violated. Here’s the relevant extract of the final text of the Declaration: “On the 29th November, 1947, the United Nations General Assembly passed a resolution calling for the establishment of a Jewish State in Eretz-Israel; the General Assembly required the inhabitants of Eretz-Israel to take such steps as were necessary on their part for the implementation of that resolution. This recognition by the United Nations of the right of the Jewish people to establish their State is irrevocable.

        This right is the natural right of the Jewish people to be masters of their own fate, like all other nations, in their own sovereign State.

        ACCORDINGLY WE, MEMBERS OF THE PEOPLE’S COUNCIL, REPRESENTATIVES OF THE JEWISH COMMUNITY OF ERETZ-ISRAEL AND OF THE ZIONIST MOVEMENT, ARE HERE ASSEMBLED ON THE DAY OF THE TERMINATION OF THE BRITISH MANDATE OVER ERETZ-ISRAEL AND, BY VIRTUE OF OUR NATURAL AND HISTORIC RIGHT AND ON THE STRENGTH OF THE RESOLUTION OF THE UNITED NATIONS GENERAL ASSEMBLY, HEREBY DECLARE THE ESTABLISHMENT OF A JEWISH STATE IN ERETZ-ISRAEL, TO BE KNOWN AS THE STATE OF ISRAEL. ” http://www.mfa.gov.il/mfa/foreignpolicy/peace/guide/pages/declaration%20of%20establishment%20of%20state%20of%20israel.aspx

        Abba Eban, then a member of the Jewish Agency delegation to the UN, was also worried, since the United States had accorded only de facto and not de jure recognition.

        Eban was mistaken. Under customary international law recognition of statehood and recognition of a government are two entirely different things. Stefan Talmon cited a portion of the Green Haywood Hackworth (editor), edition of the official US State Department “Digest of International Law” to illustrate that point:

        (v) Israel. The White House Press Release announcing the recognition of the State of Israel stated that ‘The United States recognizes the provisional government as the de facto authority of the new State of Israel. With regard to US recognition of Israel, Dr Jessup. Deputy US Representative in the Security Council, informed the Security Council on 17 December 1948 that ‘so far as the Provisional Government of Israel is concerned, the United States did extend de facto recognition to that Provisional Government of Israel.’ In this connection it is also of interest to note Dr Jessup’s telegram of 13 July 1948 to Secretary of State Marshall stating: ‘it is our understanding that US recognition of State of Israel is unqualified, that is, de jure, while our recognition of PGI [Provisional Government of Israel] was a de facto recognition of government [of] that state. Is this interpretation correct?’ The Department, on 15 July, stated its agreement with New York’s understanding and set forth its belief that ‘in case of recognition of new states as distinguished from new governments no question of de facto as against de jure recognition is involved’

        — Stefan Talmon, “Recognition of Governments in International Law: With Particular Reference to Governments in Exile, Oxford University Press, 1998, page 62 http://books.google.com/books?id=scc8EboiJX8C&lpg=PA62&ots=SHgOm4m-MT&pg=PA62#v=onepage&q&f=false

      • talknic
        August 13, 2015, 9:23 pm

        Sibiriak “How was it, then, that Israel’s acquisition of territory by military force during 1947-8 could ever be recognized as Israeli territory under international law, rather than as occupied Palestinian territory, as has been territory taken by Israel in 1967?”

        1. It has been illegal to recognize territory acquired by war or any coercive measure since at least 1933 ARTICLE 11 Adopted into theUN Charter 1945 Article 2. 4)

        2. As I understand it the UN cannot censure non-members or retrospectively censure Members for their actions prior to membership . It can only tell Members how they may or may not treat non-members. It was illegal to recognize Israel’s acquisition by force of territories prior to UN Membership (see 1. )

        “Over time, an international political and legal consensus was solidified wherein the Green Line was to become the basis for final boundaries via negotiation, with mutually agreed adjustments. “

        It has yet to be agreed.

        “…. under the auspices of its Chapter VII powers and directed the parties concerned to apply and observe the armistice agreements pending a final negotiated settlement

      • Hostage
        August 13, 2015, 11:42 pm

        2. As I understand it the UN cannot censure non-members or retrospectively censure Members for their actions prior to membership . It can only tell Members how they may or may not treat non-Members. Israel’s acquisition by force of territories prior to UN Membership was never the less illegal (see 1. )

        Bear in mind that during the 45th meeting of the Ad Hoc Political Committee hearings on Israel’s membership application Abba Eban himself, raised the issue of the clause in resolution 181(II) which stipulated that:
        “When the independence of either the Arab or the Jewish State as envisaged in this plan has become effective and the declaration and undertaking, as envisaged in this plan, have been signed by either of them, sympathetic consideration should be given to its application for admission to membership in the United Nations in accordance with article 4 of the Charter of the United Nations. http://unispal.un.org/UNISPAL.NSF/0/1DB943E43C280A26052565FA004D8174

        The undertaking envisioned in the plan was that the provisional governments of both “states” would adopt a constitution or fundamental law as a “step preliminary to independence”:
        “Accepting the obligation of the State to refrain in its international relations from the threat or use of force against the territorial integrity or political independence of any State, or in any other manner inconsistent with the purpose of the United Nations; — See B. STEPS PREPARATORY TO INDEPENDENCE, resolution 181(II) — http://www.yale.edu/lawweb/avalon/un/res181.htm

        There was obviously no exception which limited that obligation to only sovereign or independent states, but not the neighboring ones in Palestine. The representatives of the rest of the world wanted to know if Israel had actually supplied the required declaration acknowledging those undertakings? In the subsequent meetings they pinned Abba Eban down on that subject, despite his attempts to evade the question and constantly change the subject. He was forced to affirm that the Declaration of the Establishment of the State of Israel was the treaty declaration in question and that it had been officially promulgated as the fundamental law of the land, pending the adoption of a written constitution – and that Israel would faithfully implement resolutions 181(II) and 194(III) to the satisfaction of the international community. Those declarations made by Abba Eban for the record and the UN documents containing them were explicitly noted in the text and footnotes of the resolution that admitted Israel as a member of the United Nations. http://unispal.un.org/UNISPAL.NSF/0/83E8C29DB812A4E9852560E50067A5AC

        FYI, there was an interesting discussion about the legal consequences of a UN Security Council resolution on a non-member state or entity in the ICJ Kosovo case written and oral submissions from the UK and the USA. The UK thought they were non-binding, unless directed at the specific state or entity by name in the text of the resolution itself, and the USA thought they were probably non-binding even in those cases. I thought it was fascinating, because the ICTY was established by a Security Council resolution as a subsidiary organ of the Security Council to prosecute natural persons for acts committed in non-member states or entities created within the former Yugoslavia. So, states may have better rights than persons in the view of the UK and USA.

    • Hostage
      August 13, 2015, 8:34 am

      hostage and talknic:

      The significance of the formal request for recognition is that, in order to achieve recognition by the US, Israel was forced to LIMIT THE AREA of its claimed sovereignty: “…is proclaimed WITHIN THE FRONTIERS….”

      I’m familiar with that and have commented many times about the two memos written by the State Department’s Legal Counsel Ernest Gross at the request of Under Secretary Lovett for the White House, which explained the wrongfulness of recognizing either new state if it claimed more territory than the UN had allocated to it. He also discussed the fact that (1) the Security Council could recommend its own solution, but that it could not overrule the General Assembly’s decision, which would remain in effect, unless withdrawn; (2) the definition of communities in the mandate and that Transjordan was one of them; and (3) that in the absence of any competent authority on 15 May 1948, the law of nations recognized the right of the inhabitants of those communities to establish a state and operate a government.

      He also wrote a memo advising the US to oppose several requests for an advisory opinion on the subject of partition. I think the US Judge, Hackworth, would have strongly advised against it, but can only guess about the rest of the judges. In other related cases about partitions or allocations of non-self-governing territories, the ICJ has ruled that the General Assembly has the necessary legal competence. But each case has its own material facts that are different from one another.

      Each of these comments has some useful information on various aspects and links to the memos:
      Foreign Relations of the United States 1948, volume 5, part 2, page 960.
      http://mondoweiss.net/2012/05/a-portrait-of-a-former-zionist-part-1#comment-455123
      http://mondoweiss.net/2014/05/determination-haunts-policy#comment-666270
      http://mondoweiss.net/2012/02/bds-interview-fallout-finkelstein-showed-his-own-fear-of-the-paradigm-shift-in-discourse-on-the-israeli-palestinian-conflict#comment-426594

      Foreign relations of the United States, 1948. The Near East, South Asia, and Africa, page 543 link to digicoll.library.wisc.edu
      http://mondoweiss.net/2015/06/supreme-israel-jerusalem#comment-773752

    • Hostage
      August 13, 2015, 8:51 am

      P.S. Here is the memo (starting at the foot of the page) wherein Secretary of State Lovett explained that the USA would not be recognizing the Arab Government of Gaza, precisely because (1) it claimed all of the territory of Palestine and would simply trigger Revisionist Zionist counter-claims; and (2) it was associated with a former war time enemy, the Mufti.
      See Foreign relations of the United States, 1948. The Near East, South Asia, and Africa (in two parts) page 1447-1448 http://digicoll.library.wisc.edu/cgi-bin/FRUS/FRUS-idx?type=goto&id=FRUS.FRUS1948v05p2&isize=M&submit=Go+to+page&page=1447

  25. talknic
    August 13, 2015, 8:45 am

    Further to the matter of Israel’s territorial extent.

    As late as 31st Aug 1949 Israel was still attempting to claim territories beyond the extent of those in its plea for recognition

    The claim was rebuffed citing the Armistice Agreements

    • Hostage
      August 13, 2015, 2:12 pm

      Further to the matter of Israel’s territorial extent.

      As late as 31st Aug 1949 Israel was still attempting to claim territories beyond the extent of those in its plea for recognition Israel’s claim was rebuffed citing the Armistice Agreements

      Bear in mind that the General Assembly was called back into session by the Security Council to reconsider the Plan – and that it had adopted a resolution on 14 May suspending the work of its Palestine Commission. The same resolution created yet another subsidiary organ, the Office of the UN Mediator for Palestine. The new organ had a legal mandate which amounted to a blank check to revise the plan, i.e. “Promote a peaceful adjustment of the future situation of Palestine; ” See A/RES/186 (S2) http://www.yale.edu/lawweb/avalon/un/gres186.htm

      The General Assembly eventually replaced that subsidiary organ with yet another one, the Palestine Conciliation Commission with a much weaker mandate. I don’t see how anything it said “rebuffed” Israel’s new territorial claims, since the text of Article 40 of the UN Charter itself doesn’t even allow the Security Council to do that under the terms of a Chapter 7 “provisional measure” – and that was the Article it had cited in its resolutions on the cease fire and armistice lines. It says:

      “In order to prevent an aggravation of the situation, the Security Council may, before making the recommendations or deciding upon the measures provided for in Article 39, call upon the parties concerned to comply with such provisional measures as it deems necessary or desirable. Such provisional measures shall be without prejudice to the rights, claims, or position of the parties concerned. The Security Council shall duly take account of failure to comply with such provisional measures.

      The Commission was responding in part to Israel’s answers regarding the issue of the right of refugees to return to their homes in either state. http://unispal.un.org/UNISPAL.NSF/0/C96E0252E7710BCE85256D95006BC157 As I’ve pointed out, even a change of sovereignty doesn’t have any legal effect on (inheritable) “family rights and honor”, or “private property” under customary international law. So it didn’t matter who was assigned “provisional” jurisdiction under the terms of the armistice agreements. Once the hostilities had ceased, the refugees had the right to go home – and the Security Council made that clear after the Lausanne Conference failed to resolve anything. See S/RES/89(1950), link to un.org and S/RES/95(1951) link to un.org

      The Palestine Conciliation Commission (PCC aka CCP) had convened the Lausanne Peace Conference after the Security Council had thanked and dismissed the UN Mediator for his work on the Armistice Agreements that had been concluded during the Rhodes Conference. Note: Israel refused to negotiate with the representatives of Arab Palestine, because it didn’t recognize Palestine as a “sovereign state.” But Ben Gurion had advised the US member of the PCC that the special status of Palestine could be recognized in the peace treaty through the device of a federal union with Transjordan. See Foreign relations of the United States, 1949. The Near East, South Asia, and Africa, page 927 http://digicoll.library.wisc.edu/cgi-bin/FRUS/FRUS-idx?type=turn&entity=FRUS.FRUS1949v06.p0943&id=FRUS.FRUS1949v06&isize=M In fact Israel had already done that, by signing an armistice agreement with “Jordan” after the Jericho Conference.

      I’ve commented before about the fact that, during the hearings on Israel’s membership application, Abba Eban had complained that the Arab States could not be blamed for refusing to recognize the State of Israel, when the United Nations was still refusing to do so itself. Within 24 hours of its acceptance as a full UN Member State, all of the Arab States had signed the Lausanne protocol and the map attached to resolution 181(II) as the basis for negotiations.

      The Security Council appointed the GA PCC to carry-on in the Mediator’s stead on their behalf. The Commission had circulated the map as part of the protocols at the request of the Israeli delegation, calling on the Arab States to accept the map. So whatever Israel had previously claimed was irrelevant to the discussions going forward during the Lausanne Conference.

      In “A Tale of Two Cities: The Rhodes and Lausanne Conferences, 1949,” Neil Caplan, Journal of Palestine Studies, Vol. 21, No. 3 (Spring, 1992), pp. 5-34 notes that the first head of the PLO, Ahmad Shuqayri, was a member of the Syrian delegation to the Lausanne Conference. He said the adoption of the protocol proved the Arabs had not suffered from a “no” complex during the period of 1947-49 and that it was a myth that they “never missed an opportunity to miss an opportunity”. Three days before the Arabs accepted the protocol Walter Eytan, head of the Israeli delegation, said “it would be a great thing for us if the Arabs, who had never been willing to touch November 29th with a barge pole, agreed to take this as a base de travail.” He had predicted that the Arabs would never agree to sign. The Israelis demanded major territorial revisions. But when they found out that the Arab population of the territory they desired was several hundred thousand higher than expected, they added onerous terms and conditions that they knew would be rejected. By the end of the Conference, even Truman was publicly condemning Israel’s bad faith and extreme positions on the subjects of the refugees and territorial compensation. He threatening to reassess and completely overhaul US policy toward Israel as a result and the Tripartite Declaration on the Armistice Borders (1950) was intended to put an end to Israel’s aspirations for territorial aggrandizement. http://avalon.law.yale.edu/20th_century/mid001.asp

      • talknic
        August 13, 2015, 7:51 pm

        @ Hostage OK. I understand because I’m willing to spend the time to read thru

        However, my purpose is to show in as few words as possible thru official Jewish Agency and/or Israeli Government statements and claims that they are inveterate liars who cannot be trusted.

        So if one meets the argument that Israel didn’t declare any borders one only needs to point to the official Israeli Government statement May 22nd 1948 and/or 31st Aug 1949. Quite clearly Israel was aware at the time of its own territorial extent.

        In respect to ‘rebuffed’ Their claim was certainly not recognized.

      • Hostage
        August 13, 2015, 8:47 pm

        However, my purpose is to show in as few words as possible thru official Jewish Agency and/or Israeli Government statements and claims that they are inveterate liars who cannot be trusted.

        Correct and commendable.

        So if one meets the argument that Israel didn’t declare any borders one only needs to point to the official Israeli Government statement May 22nd 1948 and/or 31st Aug 1949. Quite clearly Israel was aware at the time of its own territorial extent.

        Yes, but both of those claims relied heavily upon the UN resolution. In reality, Jews neither owned, inhabited, nor effectively controlled 60 percent of the territory of their new “state” (between Beersheba and the Gulf of Aqaba) until March of 1949. That’s when they violated the UN Armistice Agreement by deploying IDF forces from Beersheba on a “maneuver” to capture everything lying to the south, all the way to the Arab police station at the village of Umm Al-Rashrash (modern day Eilat). http://www.ynetnews.com/articles/0,7340,L-4635640,00.html

        But that wasn’t an “Egyptian” village. It had been part of the Palestine Mandate for 25 years and therefore couldn’t be ceded to Israel under the Camp David Accords by Sadat as the Zionists like to suggest. Israel itself didn’t meet the criteria that the jcpa is shreying about when Truman recognized it.

      • talknic
        August 13, 2015, 9:42 pm

        @ Hostage “In reality, Jews neither owned, inhabited, nor effectively controlled 60 percent of the territory of their new “state”…”

        Brings us another point. As I understand it ownership of land is ‘real estate’ not ‘territory’. E.g., Japanese and Chinese companies and individuals own land in Australia, they have no territorial rights what so ever. Territory belongs to its legal inhabitants whether they own/rent/lease real estate or live under a bridge. It is therefore not necessary for Palestinians provide title deeds to real estate in order to prove a Right of Return to non-Israeli territories or for dispossessed non-Jewish Israelis to return to Israel.

        MORE LIES: From the Israeli Land Fund:

        The State of Israel today was built on land which was legally purchased by Jewish organizations such as the Jewish National Fund (JNF) and other private individuals.”

        As always, the Hasbara has a gaping big hole. The Jewish National Fund trips up on its own lies. The JNF also says:

        “These are not State lands

      • Hostage
        August 13, 2015, 11:54 pm

        @ Hostage “In reality, Jews neither owned, inhabited, nor effectively controlled 60 percent of the territory of their new “state”…”

        Brings us another point. As I understand it ownership of land is ‘real estate’ not ‘territory’. E.g., Japanese and Chinese companies and individuals own land in Australia, they have no territorial rights what so ever.

        Correct, but my point is that you can’t ignore the Bedouins and other inhabitants who were actually there and posit “the right” of non-existent Jews – as a disembodied abstract principle – to exercise “self-determination” and “jurisdiction” (the only tangible manifestation of sovereignty).

      • talknic
        August 14, 2015, 12:10 am

        @ Hostage I’m outta here for a while. Thanks for your enlightening posts, I shall plod on.

  26. gamal
    August 13, 2015, 1:26 pm

    dear Dr I have been thinking about your Islamic studies, may i recommend

    “Misquoting Muhammad: The Challenge and Choices of Interpreting the Prophet’s Legacy”

    By Jonathan AC Brown

    http://www.amazon.com/Misquoting-Muhammad-Challenge-Interpreting-Prophets/dp/178074420X

    I am too lazy to explain why it might be helpful,ahadith, tafsir, polysemony etc, you can look into that if it engenders any interest whatsoever. He is a new breed of scholar rather well read and proficient. Sunnism is never saying “I know”.

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