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I have trouble with the word Palestinian and I was hoping I could get a clearer view through this site. Although I am relatively young, I have done extensive research on the subject and have not found any mention of a "Palestinian" people prior to 1948, and very few prior to 1967. In fact, I have found evidence that contradict the idea of a Palestinian heritage. None of the League of Nation or British documents regarding the region mention the word Palestinian, rather simply "The Jews and Arabs of Palestine". All Arabic mentioning of the region referred to it as Syria or Greater Syria (Palestine isn't even an Arabic word, there is no 'P' in Arabic). An example of this is a quote from Auni Bey Abdul-Hadi made during the Peel Commission: "There is no such country [as Palestine]! Palestine is a term the Zionists invented! There is no Palestine in the Bible. Our country was for centuries, part of Syria.”

So the question is, where do the people who now call themselves "Palestinians" come from, and, more importantly, who's responsibility are they? Looking back on the League of Nations Mandates regarding the region, it appears as though a solution was set forth. The region known as Palestine was divided into two portions, east of the Jordan River (Transjordan) and west of the Jordan River (Jewish Palestine). One would then assume that Jews living East of the Jordan would move to Jewish Palestine and Arabs living West of the Jordan would move to Transjordan. So why didn't this happen? Most likely WWII and the disbanding of the UN (even though article 80 explicitly states that all LoN mandates transferred over to the UN). It appears as though most of the people who call themselves Palestinians are the outcasts (or progeny of outcasts) of the surrounding countries, mainly Jordan and Egypt.

I guess my biggest issue is the hypocrisy in claiming the land of Israel is on the "Palestinians" land when even the Arabs admit that the land (including what is now Jordan) was a Jewish land until 135 CE and that during the Ottoman Empire, there is no evidence of a large population (I have read 80-250 k) of Arabs in the region, including Jordan, Israel and everything in between, meanwhile there are more than 10 times that number of Arab Israelis.

I hope this hasn't offended anyone and I invite anyone to help clarify things for me.

Note: I have attached two maps, the first of which was the original League of Nations proposal for Jewish Palestine and the second which dedicated more than 3/4 of that land to Transjordan.

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I think you can ignore the past unless it becomes revised and that revision is then promoted as fact for some nefarious agenda. At that point, it must be challenged. People will always revise when their intention is to marginalize you. Holocaust denial is revisionism. The claim that there was never any Jewish temple in Jerusalem is revisionism. The claim that Jews never lived in Israel is revisionism. The claim that Arabs in Palestine had no connection with the Holocaust is also revisionism given Amin Al Husseini the Grand Mufti of Jerusalem's relationship with Hitler and his many public statements regarding the Jews and the final solution. And all of these things revised are used to further the same goal which is to first paint the picture of Jews as people who play fast and loose with the truth and land thieves and exploiters of a Holocaust which never happened etc etc. At the end of this road is the justification for being against the existence of Israel and supporting the dissolution of the State or of supporting the "one State solution" which of course is the same thing.
So we're pretty much on the same page.

Though I could imagine a successful one-state solution,
even if it is unlikely.

Peace,

Yigal
I can barely imagine it anymore.
George, I think its important to try and keep our collective conversation here as factual as we can. To claim that "The Jewish history in Palestine is very new" just defies reality. You cannot simply make up facts and then throw them out there as if by virtue of you claiming them, they're true. Jews were there before you're ancestors were. Arabs from the Arabian peninsula invaded the area, conquered it and have occupied ever since. Jews had already been there for a long long time.

A place called "Palestine" has never been a nation State and so could never have been occupied.

Yesterday you posted that this "occupation" has caused the "resistance" and Jews as such had nothing to do with it.

I asked you why there was no such "resistance" when Egypt occupied Gaza and Jordan occupied the West Bank? You just ignored the question. Can you answer this question for me?

Finally Zionism is surely not racist.
Racism is the fact that a Jew cannot step foot in much of the Arab world. Can you tell me one Arab country where Jews participate as much as Arabs do in israel? I don't think you can.

Does this sound like racism to you :

"From the "The Declaration Of The
Establishment Of The State Of Israel" May 14, 1948

"WE APPEAL — in the very midst of the onslaught launched against us now for months — to the Arab inhabitants of the State of Israel to preserve peace and participate in the upbuilding of the State on the basis of full and equal citizenship and due representation in all its provisional and permanent institutions."

Far too often its Arabs preaching about what they think Israel is and does wrong when they do far far worse but seem to just ignore their own behavior.

Lets start by accepting what we are and what we do and go form there George.

Regards,
Steve Michael
The fact that I was denied entry to Dubai for the Summer X games because I was Jewish is racism. The fact that Arabs hold political office, however, is not.
George,
Your exaggerations make it almost impossible to have a rational discussion with you.
Israel does not have 90% of historical Palestine.
The country of Jordan by itself is over 70% of the Mandate Palestine area.
That leaves less than 30% for both Israel AND the Palestinians.
Neither has over 90%.
Please...
Yigal
What's the game where one person makes a declaratory statement and the second person expands on it and a third expands on that? That's what much of this reminds me of when the first statement's accuracy is not challenged. For example, "the Palestinians are a people because they say so" became "the Palestinians are a people who had a country because they say so" which soon became "the Palestinians are a people who had a country that was stolen from them by Jewish Europeans because they say so" and that led to "the Palestinians are a people who had a country that was stolen by Jewish Europeans and the world should reverse that injustice and until they do any act of "resistance" is justified because they say so" and we're here now all because the original premise was never challenged.

No, I disagree with the notion that making something up because you really want it to be true is good enough. What's the old saying "A lie can get halfway around the world before the truth can get its boots on" ?

Why is it so difficult to actually answer the original question? Why do we feel we need to sweep reality under the rug or blur the answers to those questions?

No one disputes the fact that there were people living on land where Israel is today. But some like myself do dispute many other aspects which are usually quickly glossed over as if they don't matter. But they do matter. People who had been living there for just a few years suddenly became people who had centuries connected to the land.? How many understand that when we talk about the Palestinian right of return, in many many instances we are talking about people who had only been living there long enough for the UN to grant then "refugee" status which was merely 36 months ? How many were really squatting on land that was in fact owned by absentee landlords and legally sold to Jewish organizations in the 1800's?

Bottom line is I believe if the Palestinian Arabs want to use their narrative as a basis to achieve justice, then we ought to be able to examine that narrative and challenge it where its veracity is lacking.
History is not factual, it is story telling. When millions of people believe a certain narrative to be the truth - it is the truth for them. It is part of their identity.

I believe both sides should respect and acknowledge the other side's narrative as such.
Drawing on this mutual respect, both sides should join hands in finding just and peaceful solutions to the many problems we share in the present and in the future. The extent of action that can be taken to reverse past injustice is negotiable, but limited, as two wrongs do not make a right. Instead of reversing, we should find ways to advance the welfare and state of all, by recognising the humanity of all, and ensuring human rights for each and every one.

We need to accept each other's version of the past, so that we can create an agreeable version of the future.
Eyal,
You see history very differently than I do.
To me - history is what ACTUALLY happened.
What we believe is subjective, not objective.
And you can bet your fortune that there is such a thing as the Objective.
Historically speaking - if millions of people believe a lie,
and if a lie is the basis for their identity - that lie has a habit of
being revealed - with disastrous consequences for them.
Sometimes, the "truths" of which you speak are mutualy exclusive,
and cannot be reconciled, or ever lead to mutual acceptance.
For example, if certain Muslims "scholars" say that Abraham never sacrificed Isaac,
and that Jews maliciously made that story up and altered the Torah to diminish the importance of Islam
(without a shred of evidence, of course), I do NOT need to accept that ridiculous, anti-historical argument..
(That is the position of Ibn Hanbal, and Wahhab, and today's Muslim Brotherhood leader
Yusuf Qaradawy.)
Firstly, I believe the objective evidence supports my opinion,
Secondly, I will not accept someone else making it an article of their faith to believe a lie about me.
Reminds me of a story from Thomas More: He once wrote that a Christian noblewoman came to him
and complained that when she found out that Mary mother of Jesus was Jewish, she was unable to
love Mary as much as she had before.
What had she loved before? An illusion, a lie. If she felt it deeply and completely,
it was still based on an objective falsehood, as she eventually learned to her disappointment.
There is a definite limit to how far you should let cultural relativism take you.
So, NO, we must not ALWAYS accept each other's version of the past.
As much as possible, sure. But not as an unbreajable rule.
I believe building a more agreeable future depends on building a dialogue
with each other to work towards the purpose of mutual acceptance,
in the context of a striving for objective truth.
Yigal
Yigal, I agree that there is such a thing as objective truth. But I have no idea how we can ever understand it in a way that isn't socially constructed.
Step by step, and very very carefully.
Which precludes us from overgeneralizations and stereotypes.
Yigal
George,
You are deluging us with all of this material, which would take me hours to respond to, when you
still haven't answered one simple forward-looking question:

What are your criticisms of the PA (and Hamas) leaders, up till now?

How can we have a meaningful discussion when it's impossible to
focus on a specific issue at a time?
I mean, really...

Yigal

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