May 15th, 1948 – a day that brings two very different names from Israelis and Arabs.
To Israelis, it is the day the UN partition plan, passed the previous November took effect.
To the Arabs (no, not the Palestinians, whoever they are, but to all Arabs) it is “the disaster”.
In the 60 years since, there have been literally thousands of books, millions of articles, endless debate about this issue.
As with many such discussions, the original, and essential questions have been lost in the noise.
Why would the Arabs declare this a disaster?
Let’s look at the facts.
There is no debate among any real historian about the presence of Jew in what the Romans first called Palestina.
Even more, recent discoveries verifying the location of King David’s city, what is called Ir David in Hebrew is readily tour-able for those wishing to go (an amazing exhibit) to see the original city of Jerusalem before the construction by David’s son, Solomon, of what is now the symbol of Jerusalem, the Temple Mount.
So, at the least, the presence of Jews dates to roughly 3000 years ago.
Of course, anybody who believes in the Christian historicity would believe that at least since some time before the time of Jesus, Jews were there.
Mohamed, creator of the Muslim religion, lived in the 7th century AD. More than 600 years after Christ, and thousands after the Exodus and certainly of King David.
After the Bar Kochba revolt, the Romans finally expelled Jews from Palestina, and the “tribes” fled and the Kingdom of Israel was dispersed. However, Jews remained in the area. All over what is now the Arab world, and in today’s Israel.
Finally, in the 1800’s Jews were once again the majority in Jerusalem itself.
So, the concept of Israel’s Jewish population being a result of WWII post settlement is a myth.
When the British made the commitment to withdraw from the Mandate of Palestine (which of course meant that Jews, Arabs, Druse, Christians, and Bedouins were ALL “Palestinians” the UN agreed to partition the area between an Arab state and a Jewish state. It was also at this time the TransJordan became “The Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan”.
The war began immediately and I won’t go into details of it that most of you have some basic understanding of. All the surrounding Arab states attacked the new Israel.
Significantly however, is the now forgotten concept of two states, Israel (which named itself) and the unnamed Arab state.
So, what is the forgotten question? Well, what are the so called Palestinians arguing for? Forget suicide bombers, alleged occupation, and all the other noise. An independent state.
And the state they are fighting for now is significantly smaller than the state that the UN AND ISRAEL, yes ISRAEL agreed to, but that the ARABS rejected.
So, really, what is the disaster?
I would posit, that the true disaster was then, and is now, the abject refusal of the Arabs to accept the existence of Israel and live in coexistence.
What you should ask yourself is this. Why would they reject this proposal, and considering all that they have written, spoken, and demonstrated by their actions, is it really a separate independent state they want, or is it the same thing they wanted in 1948? To drive the Jews into the sea.
If you go into the Arab world, in fact, you will see everywhere the phrase “From the River to the Sea”. This simply means that the territory that is now Israel, from the Jordan River to the Mediterranean Sea will be Arab. No Israel, no two states.
So, what is the disaster? I would put to you that incredible mistake that the Arabs made by refusing to accept the UN partition plan.
If they had, the so called Palestinians would now be celebrating their 60th Independence day, as Israel has.
Would they ever admit this? Of course not, again, why? Because that is not their goal. There are no real true national aspirations. The ultimate goal is simply the elimination of the Jews from the area.