by Amnon Lord
Just in time for Nakba day, the Arab narrative collides with reality: documents by officers of the Mandate that have come to light in Britain create a picture of massive Arab flight, and not expulsion. This is a good opportunity to think about the lie embedded in the concept of "occupation" too.
Historical lies accumulate like dust. First it's in the corners, then under the carpet, and after that, on top of the carpet and under the table, until there's a pile right in the center of the house. What does this mean? Anyone who has ever washed a floor knows that if you don't sweep and wash, the dust accumulates over time. Sometimes, and I hope all of the honorable gentlemen will excuse me, the dust can seem like horse manure, to use a polite expression. And if Steven Hawking is hiding in the depths of that pile of gunk someone has to dig a lot of horse manure, to use the same polite expression, to reach him and get him out of there. That's what happens when the lies pile up like garbage and the floor is not cleaned constantly. But then a little bit of truth suddenly appears, and like a fresh breeze, blows the whole pile away. Of course, this is only wishful thinking.
But now, a little corner of truth has been exposed. It was publicized in the British media and even quoted in an offhand manner in the Israeli media, but no one followed up on it. In the documents that were published in Britain from the period at the end of the Mandate, a report by people from the British government in the land of Israel from the first months of 1948 has come to light: "Arabs of Palestine have suffered a series of overwhelming defeats...the Jewish victories...have reduced Arab morale to zero, and following the cowardly example of their inept leaders, they are fleeing from the mixed areas in their thousands. It is now obvious that the only hope of regaining their position lies in the regular armies of the Arab states".
In the local press they preferred to feature the sayings of the British colonialist experts that the majority of the Jewish public supports "Jewish terror". But the report that I quoted, from a hostile British source, confirms what Israel has claimed all of the years. It confirms that in academia and among various political organizations in Israel, the lies of historical revisionism from the school of new historians have taken hold, and worse, these lies have become the basis of Palestinian propaganda. The Nakba is mainly the flight of the Arabs after their own aggression resulted in the crushing defeats that fell upon them.
It is correct that in later phases of the war there were expulsions from Arab communities. But this could have resulted from the pattern that had been created of in the first half of the war. The Arabs understood the rules of the game: wherever the Jews conquered territory, the Arabs evacuated and moved the lines to an area under Arab control. In the North they moved to Lebanon, in the center to the Arab settlements that are under the control of the Arab League, and in the South - to Gaza.
And another fact: the war took place mainly in the Jewish areas of settlement. This should inform every historian as to who was the defender and who the aggressor. The Arab attempt at conquest ended in the flight of the Arabs from the area of Jewish settlement. And they did not flee hundreds and thousands of kilometers from Russia and Poland to Germany, but really nearby - they moved only a walkable distance away. If someone really wants to know, they can read what was written by Martha Gellhorn, the great journalist and Ernest Hemingway's wife and companion when he fought in Spain. In a huge article in 1961, she wrote about the whole legend of the Palestinian refugees, ridiculed all the descriptions of their suffering and compared them to the real scenes of expulsion in the Spanish Civil War and in Europe during and after the Second World War.
As with the lie regarding the refugees and the great nakba of Arab flight, I am beginning to think about the lie that has been incorporated into what they define as "occupation". If, every other day, Abu Mazen is in another capital in the world, from Beijing to Ethiopia - this is occupation? Nonsense. If the European Union and all of the international powers pump huge amounts of money into the Palestinian Authority - this is occupation? And there is any number of international representatives, and foreign citizens who live in the territories and there is an autonomous government and elections and they are visited by spiritual figures and heads of state such as the American president.
Gentlemen, this is not occupation, this is brain washing. One can also prove on Facebook that the moon is the sun. What is there, really, in the area of Judea and Samaria and the Jordan Valley, what is their international status, objectively and not according to the opinion of lawyers - who are mostly Israeli? If we are straight and accept what our eyes see - there is there a multi-national government in which various international factors contribute whatever they want to its existence. Unfortunately, Israel contributes the "dirty work" - the policing. But not entirely.
The world doesn't like to see a Jewish foot step over the lines of June 4, 1967. The fact is that in 1979 and in 1980, when there were discussions about autonomy, no one spoke about lack of legitimacy of the Israeli presence and Israeli control in the territories of Judea and Samaria then. Not in the Oslo Accords either. The propaganda builds up and it's hard... so hard.
Next Part: The Establishment of a Palestinian State Spells Disaster for Abu Mazen
Translated from Hebrew by Sally Zahav.
Source: Makor Rishon Newspaper, May 17, 2013, Issue 823, Yoman Section, pg. 4
Copyright - Original materials copyright (c) by the authors.