The second was the Stern Gang led by Itzhak Shamir (born Icchak Jaziernicki in Rozana, Poland in 1915) which was responsible for many terrorist acts including the assassination of Count Folke Bernadotte. Shamir, of course, became Israel’s Prime Minister not once but twice: from 1983-84 and again from 1986-1992.
This Shamir described the Arabs as “beasts of the desert, not a legitimate people”. In a memorandum to UNSCOP in 1947, his Stern Gang called for the compulsory evacuation of the entire Palestinian population from Palestine, preferably in the direction of Iraq. As the sale of land by absentee landlords increased so did the bitterness of the Palestinian farmers who worked on them and who were now forced to leave by their new land owners. For this purpose, Chaim Weizmann established the Jewish Agency Executive to promote the idea of Palestinian transfer from newly acquired land. At the same time, Jewish immigration increased and the number of Jewish immigrants jumped from 30,000 in 1933 to 61,000 in 1935 (representing 29.5% of the total population).
The Declaration then followed 3 years later.
This Declaration may be considered the most extraordinary document of any government. What makes it extraordinary is the fact that, in the words of Arthur Koestler (Jewish novelist 1905-1983), "one nation solemnly promised to a second nation the country of a third". Even more extraordinary is the fact that this third country (Palestine) was still part of the empire of a fourth (Turkey).
Britain had no business offering the nation of one people to the people of many nations.
The Peel Commission (November 1937)
2. Landless villagers working as agricultural labourers.
3. Farmers who owned less than 3 dunums per capita.
On the afternoon of May 14, 1948 the Jewish State of Israel was proclaimed just as the Sabbath began at sunset that day. At 6:11pm Washington time, U.S. President Harry Truman authorised the recognition of Israel. Truman's decision to recognise the new State was not shared by many of his high ranking advisors, such as Dean Rusk, Dean Acheson, Secretary of Defence James Forrestal and Secretary of State George Marshall (read details of White House showdown leading to this recognition by Truman).
The British mandate ended the next day on 15th May 1948 at noon.
In this process, most of Palestine’s indigenous population were expelled and, together with their descendents, became numbers in an UNRWA register. Today, they total about 5.5 million people living in miserable refugee camps in Lebanon (12 camps), Syria (10 camps + 3 unofficial sites), Jordan (10 camps) West Bank (19 camps) and Gaza (8 camps). These Palestinian refugees hold the record of being the longest suffering and largest refugee population in the world. Yet, even within these camps, they remain dignified and determined that, through the application of international law, their right to return to their homes will be upheld.
Where did the refugees go?
In pursuit of their aims to take over the land of Palestine, the Zionist leadership founded the Jewish National Fund (JNF) in 1901 whose sole aim was to provide funds for the pupose of purchasing Palestinian land to settle Jewish immigrants. Incidentally, this role continues up to this day with other 'charitable' activities assigned to it to camouflage its aggressive aims.
The activities of the JNF were closely associated with those of the Zionist Settlement Department whose main priority was to facilitate the eviction of Palestinian tenants from Palestinian land bought by the JNF from absentee Palestinian landlords. The tenants came with the land, but, in Zionist eyes, they did not have the right to stay on it.
The brain behind the JNF was a Ukraine-born Zionist called Yosef Weitz (1890-1972) who came to Palestine in 1908 at the age of 18. Under his tutelage, the 'Village Files' were compiled. These files comprised aerial photographs of Palestinian villages, topographical maps and detailed records of their inhabitants. They took years to collate and were nearly complete in the late 1930's. They contained information on the quality of the land in the village, the water sources, the names of its inhabitants, their political and religious affiliations, their ages and their marital status, etc.
Names associated with the Village Files project included the following people who were the core of The Consultancy Council: Ezra Danin (1903-1985), a Syrian-born Zionist who played a key role in the ethnic cleansing of Palestine, Moshe Pasternak (1920-1976) from Poland, Yaacov Shimoni, Yehoshua Palmon, Tuvia Lishanski, Eliyahu Sassoon, Yohanan Ratner, Fritz Eisenshtater, Yaacov Tahon and an Anglo-Jewish professor of chemistry, Sasha Goldberg who conducted experiments in biological weapons in what became later The Weizmann Institute. Later, this project was developed further under the directorship of a physical chemist called Ephraim Katzir (born Ephraim Katchalsky on 16 May 1916, died on 30th May 2009) who became the 4th president of Israel (in office from 24 May 1973 to 19 April 1978). Special units in the service of the Village Files project were trained and recruited in the Zionist youth village of Shefeya in Upper Galilee. It is from here that they went out on reconnaissance missions of Palestinian villages gathering detailed information from village elders whose traditional hospitality they abused.
'Most Wanted' lists were compiled with names of young Palestinians who, after a village had been occupied by Zionist forces, would be lined up, identified, taken away and shot on the spot. Many names belonged to Palestinian National Movement fighters who were fingered out by masked collaborators. As the villages were invaded and later occupied, the pattern of ethnically cleansing them became efficient, direct and swift.
Yigael Yadin (1917-1984) who later became Israel's second Chief of Staff, admitted once that it was the detailed information gathered on these villages (i.e., the Village Files) which enabled the Zionist undeground forces in November 1947 to sweep through the Palestinian landscape with such speed and efficiency and with little resistance from the 'Arab side'. In fact, it was not 'Arab resistance' that they feared. It was the British forces. Had it not been for the British presence, Yadin declared, the Palestinian resistance to the Partition Plan would have been quelled in one month. He knew what he was talking about.
The Zionist leadership and its Consultancy group also knew that the Palestinians and the Arab leadership in general would reject the Partition Resolution. The Consultancy realised that this is the time not only to forge forward their plan to clear the Palestinian population from the UN-designated future Jewish state, but also from the areas accorded to the Palestinian state.
Prior to 1947, the Zionist agenda concentrated on building a political, ideological, cultural and economic enclave within historic Palestine. Now, during these crucial months leading to UN Resolution 181, it was decided that the time has come to translate these ideologies into realities on the ground. The Zionist leadership openly declared that it intended to take over the land of Palestine and to expel its indigenous population.
And so it was: the Zionist dream of transfer and the ethnic cleansing of Palestine came to fruition with the Palestinian Exodus of 1948 when more than 80% of the inhabitants of what became Israel were expelled and became refugees until this day. Some 140,000-150,000 Palestinians had remained behind in what became Israel and were allowed to stay. The borders of this new state, remain unrecognised and unofficial, since they have been expanding through military conquest from the 55.5% of Mandatory Palestine (under the Partition Plan of November 1947) to 78% of historic Palestine (at the time of the 1949 Armistice Agreement). Of course, the conquests continued in 1967 when Israel swept through and occupied the whole of historic Palestine.
In their drive to gain control of not only the part of Palestine allocated to the Jewish State under UN Resolution 181, but also land allocated to the Palestinian State, the Zionist forces committed the following massacres:
Al-Tira December 1947
Haifa Oil Refinery December 1947
Balad el-Sheikh December 1947
Yehiday Massacre December 1947
Khisas Massacre December 1947
Qazaza Massacre December 1947
Jaffa Massacre January 1948
Semiramis Hotel Massacre (Jerusalem) January 1948
Cairo-Haifa Train Massacre March 1948
al-Lajjun Massacre April 1948
Deir Yasin Massacre April 1948
Qaluniya Massacre April 1948
Ayn el-Zaytoun Massacre May 1948
Abu Shusha Massacre May 1948
al-Tantura Massacre May 1948
Beit Daras Massacre May 1948
Lydda Massacre July 1948
al-Dawayima Massacre October 1948
Saliha Massacre October 1948
Eilaboun Massacre October 1948
Hula Massacre October 1948…
For a chronology of key events in the history of Palestine which led to these massacres and to the Palestinian Nakba, please log on to:
David Ben-Gurion declaring the birth of Israel
It must not be forgotten that the crimes committed in Palestine and which paved the way for the creation of the so-called state of Israel, were the work of over 3000 zionist and Israeli leaders since 1939. In the words of Dr Issa Nakhleh, author of the massive 'Encylopedia of the Palestine Problem', "these zionist and Israeli leaders were all members of the Hagana, Palmach, Irgun Z'vai Leumi, the Stern Gang, the Jewish Agency and the Jewish National Fund. Many of them became presidents, cabinet ministers, generals, officers of the armed forces...and occupied high positions in Israeli society. They are still at large enjoying the fruits of their crimes, and are referred to as heroes. Many of them are [today] being honoured as heads of state, Prime Ministers, cabinet ministers, and scholars of an allegedly democratic state...The victims of their crimes are called terrorists, murderers and criminals, and the real terrorists and war criminals are being received as respectable representatives of a democratic society".
As these fateful events were engineered in such a relatively short span of time, culminating in one people expelling another and taking over their land, they exposed a well orchestrated and carefully executed Zionist project with the blessing and connivance of major world powers and a huge amount of financial muscle. The Holocaust tragedy was injected into this project to silence any opposition to its swift and perfect execution.
2. Protection of and free access to the Holy Places (Art. 7)
3. Demilitarization and UN control over Jerusalem (Art. 8)
4. Free access to Jerusalem (Art. 9)
The expulsion of the Palestinians in 1948
One of the many Palestinian refugee camps
Copyright 1996-2004 The Palestinian Return Centre
They Shall Return...Homeland Is Not For Sale.
For a chronology of key events in the history of Palestine up to The Nakba, please log on to: