Zionism & The Nakba – discipline – July 10

Like other ideas born of colonization, Zionism never properly took into account the original inhabitants of the land it seeks to colonize. It was barely spoken of and its planning has become a great source of secrecy in Israeli society. Former star players in the ethnic cleansing of Palestine went on to become great early leaders of the State of Israel, including David Ben-Gurion, Golda Meir, et. c.

Desmond Stewart posted:

Herzl seems to have foreseen that in going further than any colonialist had so far gone in Africa, he would, temporarily, alienate civilised opinion. “At first, incidentally,” he writes on the pages describing “involuntary expropriation,” “people will avoid us. We are in bad odor. By the time the reshaping of world opinion in our favor has been completed, we shall be firmly established in our country, no longer fearing the influx of foreigners, and receiving our visitors with aristocratic benevolence and proud amiability.”

Despite ethnically cleansing over 500 villages of their Palestinian inhabitants – over 800,000 refugees by the end of 1948 – to establish the State of Israel (called in Arabic “al-Nakba”, the catastrophe) there is little to no mention of the frankness of the acts that continue to this very day.


The Carmeli Brigade’s war book, chronicling its actions in the war, shows little compunction about what followed thereafter. The brigade’s officers, aware that people had been advised to gather near the port’s gate, ordered their men to station three-inch mortars on the mountain slopes overlooking the market and the port — where the Rothschild Hospital stants today — and to bombard the gathering crowds below. The plan was to make sure people would have no second thoughts, and to guarantee that the flight would be in one direction only. Once the Palestinians were gathered in the marketplace — an architectural gem that dated back to the Ottoman period, covered with white arched canopies, but destroyed beyond recognition after the creation of the State of Israel — they were an easy target for the Jewish marksmen.

Haifa’s market was less than one hundred yards from what was then the main gate to the port. When the shelling began, this was the natural destination for the panic-striken Palestinians. The crowd now broke into the port, pushing aside the policement who guarded the gate. Scores of people stormed the boats that were moored there, and began to flee the city. We can learn what happened next from the horrifying recollections of some of the survivors, published recently. Here is one of them:

Men stepped on their friends and women on their own children. The boats in the port were soon filled with living cargo. The overcrowding in them was horrible. Many turned over and sank with all their passengers.

Despite the British knowing full well that their “stand-down” from Mandate Palestine would result in widespread violence and ethnic cleansing, they allowed violent terrorist organizations like the Irgun, Haganah (of which 25,000 were trained by the British directly), and Stern Gang to dispose of the “Arab problem”. Indeed, their disarming of the native population before 1948 enabled the Jewish settlers to steamroll over hundreds of thousands of noncombatants, throwing them into foreign lands or into refugee camps.


As they burst into the village, the Jewish soldiers sprayed the houses with machine-gun fire, killing many of the inhabitants. The remaining villagers were then gathered in one place and murdered in cold blood, their bodies abused while a number of the women were raped and then killed.

Fahim Zaydan, who was twelve years old at the time, recalled how he saw his family murdered in front of his eyes:

They took us out one after the other; shot an old man and when one of his daughters cried, she was shot too. Then they called my brother Muhammad, and shot him in front of us, and when my mother yelled, bending over him — carrying my little sister Hudra in her hands, still breastfeeding her — they shot her too.

Zaydan himself was shot, too, while standing in a row the Jewish soldiers had lined up against a wall, which they had then sprayed with bullets, ‘just for the fun of it’, before they left. He was lucky to survive his wounds.

Recent research has brought down the accepted number of people massacred at Deir Yassin from 170 to ninety-three. Of course, apart from the victims of the massacre itself, dozens of others were killed in the fighting and hence were not included in the official list of victims. However, as the Jewish forces regarded any Palestinian village as an enemy military base, the distinction between massacring people and killing them ‘in battle’ was slight. One only has to be told that thirty babies were among the slaughtered in Deir Yassin to understand why the whole ‘quantitative’ exercise — which the Israelis repeated as recently as April 2002 in the massacre of Jenin — is insignificant. At the time, the Jewish leadership proudly announced a high number of victims so as to make Deir Yassin the epicentre of the catastrophe — a warning to all Palestinians that a similar fate awaited them if they refused to abandon their homes and take flight.

Among other things, the acts used to ethnically cleanse the Palestinians from the State of Israel included: barrel explosives, beatings, poisoning wells, rape, destruction of homes, destruction of livestock, mass executions, looting, and threats by loudspeaker.

Ernest Laharanne posted:

A great calling is reserved for the Jews: to be a living channel of communication between three continents. You shall be the bearers of civilization to peoples who are still inexperienced and their teachers in the European sciences, to which your race has contributed so much. You shall be the mediators between Europe and far Asia, opening the roads that lead to India and China — those unknown regions which must ultimately be thrown open to civilization. You will come to the land of your fathers decorated with the crown of age-long martyrdom, and there, finally, you will be completely from all your ills! Your capital will again bring the wide stretches of barren land under cultivation; your labor and industry will once more turn the ancient soil into fruitful valleys, reclaiming it from the encroaching sands of the desert, and the world will again pay its homage to the oldest of peoples.

Why is this still important?

Zionism is an outdated idea and its continued steamrolling over native populations is just as irredeemable as it was 62 years ago.

Suggested topics of discussion for this thread: right of return and its feasibility, continued ethnic cleansing of Palestinians, censorship of Nakba commemoration in present-day Israel, and Zionism’s unsustainablity in today’s (and yesterday’s!) world.


Suggested reading
Ilan Pape’s “Ethnic Cleansing of Palestine”
Edward Said’s “The Question of Palestine”

Albert Hadawi posted:

There is an erroneous conception in the minds of many in the West that the Israelis are giving concessions if they allow a few thousand refugees to come back to the occupied territories. Well, this is the truth upside down. It’s the Palestinians who are giving the biggest concession by allowing those alien Jews to come to our country, illegally and against our wishes. They took away out land, our homes, massacred our people, committed untold atrocities.

Fuad Sahknini posted:

It is a human case. It is a very simple case. It doesn’t need an explanation at all. You bring a nation from outside, you put them in a land, uproot the people of that land, kick them out, and bring in immigrants in place of them.

Omar, a farmer from Jericho posted:

Our problem is very simple. A foreigner came and took our land, took our farms and our homes, and kicked us out. We have in mind to return.



Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s