Once again the bombs are falling on the Gaza Strip, a stretch of territory excised from Palestine proper as a result of continuing illegal and illegitimate actions by Israel. In fact, Gaza has become a closed ghetto, first cut off from Palestine in violation of the partition plans and political programs and then turned into a sealed ghetto, following the democratic elections which brought the Islamic Resistance Party — Hamas — into power. Categorized as a terrorist organization in the United States, with some of its leading supporters there imprisoned for over twenty years for sending humanitarian aid to Palestinians in Gaza, it can come as no surprise that the Israeli and Western media accuse Hamas for attacking Israel with rockets, rather than reporting that Hamas sent off the rockets as a response to an Israeli attack!
This method of reporting is part of continued efforts of de-legitimization of the Palestinian struggle for freedom from the yoke of Zionist genocidal oppression and violence. Furthermore, the condemnations have not been accompanied by reference to the historical record: that the Zionist war, both cold and hot, against the Palestinians has not stopped for even one day since 1948, and that it went into relentless high gear since 1967 and continues unabated. This continuous aggression — administrative and military — is never brought into the Western vision or understanding, although a quick perusal of the websites of the Palestine Center for Human Rights located in Gaza City, Mahsom Watch and Betselem provide chilling and detailed information of this continuing quotidian warfare.
For anyone who has not succumbed to Zionist propaganda, it is a known fact that when rockets are fired from Gaza it is always in response to an Israeli attack, especially when this attack is a blatant and pointed act of violence given high visibility by the Israelis. Although Israel had begun pounding Gaza on 13 November 2012, which apparently led to a truce agreement being formulated, the assassination of Ahmed Jabari on 14 November 2012, the head of the Palestinian resistance forces, was executed in order to justify full-scale Israeli warfare. High visibility in this case was the creation of a video of the event uploaded on the websites of the Israeli news outlets so that the viewers could enjoy a repeat performance! The reason for this latest attack is given on the Israel Defense Forces [sic] web blog:
On November 14, the IDF embarked on Operation Pillar of Defense[sic], meant to defend Israel’s civilians from the incessant rocket fire they’ve suffered during the past 12 years, and cripple the terror organizations in the Gaza Strip.
Their English translation of the name of the military operation is inaccurate, and I suspect that this is deliberate. The name in Hebrew is ‘Amud Ashan — Pillar of Smoke — a metaphor created to elicit deliberate comparison in the Israeli mind with the pillar of fire and the pillar of clouds from the biblical story of the Exodus according to which God led the Children of Israel out of their slavery in Egypt on their journey to freedom in the Promised Land! Of necessity, this name and this image brings about an inversion of the roles of the Israelis and the Palestinians: the Israeli aggressor once again becomes the persecuted victim, as per the Exodus story, while the Palestinians, immobilized and strangled in the ghetto-prison of Gaza, enclosed within electrified walls and fences, are transmogrified into the pharaonic terrorists relentlessly and heartlessly persecuting the innocent Israeli victims. This inversion involves more than labels: besides inverting the moral order and the facts of reality, it serves, once again, to reinforce the image of the Palestinian as enemy, as demon, as sub-human, an entity not entitled to any respect or consideration! It is a tried and tested formula for distracting attention and blame from the real perpetrators of death and destruction on to the victims of those acts of aggressions.
Political assassination is the specialty du jour of Israel, a praxis adopted wholeheartedly by President Obama and his own personal drone “kill list”. Using murder to deliberately undermine the political echelon in the hope of weakening it with respect to the possibility of political recuperation after a war is an act which violates the third principle of legitimacy of the laws of war — the principle of chivalry — a principle recognizing the humanity of the enemy. The enemy must be treated with respect in order for normal social life to be commenced or resumed at the end of hostilities.
Clausewitz’ aphorism — that war is a continuation of politics — is not descriptive but prescriptive. Negotiations leading to peace must be the purpose of a legitimate war of defense. It is in this light that one should understand the information released by Gershon Baskin, an Israeli political activist, that the Palestinian leadership in Gaza, including Ahmed Jabari, had received a draft for a truce agreement just hours before his assassination. It is therefore obvious that the assassination was executed for the specific purpose of preventing such a truce. What this indicates, at the very least, is flagrant bad faith on the part of the Israelis, but more importantly, it is another instance of provocative treachery, a subject which deserves a separate analysis.
The right to protect human life is absolute, even if the means used are conditioned. Therefore, according to all human norms, natural law, legal norms and international law and jurisprudence, the Palestinians have a legitimate right of response. It must be remembered however, that the Palestinians have been denied a state and an accompanying army by Israel and the United States. Therefore the response available to the Palestinians in Gaza is extremely limited and is confined to rockets fired into Israel. These rockets are primitive weapons and not extremely accurate which is why they have been defined as fireworks. But that is all that the Palestinians have for their defense. This response is the only avenue open for a society under military attack to try and force the cessation of such an attack when the aggressor will not negotiate with you in good faith.
The Israelis are proud of the fact that their army is the fourth largest in the world, and as far as they are concerned, also the best, the most effective and the most moral! Because of the exponentially huge disproportion in power between Israel and the Palestinians, the Palestinians simply cannot afford to react to each and every attack against them. They have to carefully and prudentially weigh their possibilities of response which is the reason why the Israelis never have to cease their relentless attacks of varying intensity. But it is also the disproportionate attacks by the Israeli army that violate the principle of proportionality underlying legitimate warfare.
The Right of Resistance is the Right of Self-Defense
It can be argued cogently that since the right to self-determination was deliberately and explicitly denied the Palestinian people following the collapse of the Ottoman Empire, with no right or justification whatsoever in the circumstances, the Palestinians are still entitled to demand and fight for such rights. (see endnote).
Instead of freedom, they were faced with a reality of the colonization of Palestine by foreigners against the wishes of the local population, a colonization which ultimately led to an expulsion of nearly 90% of the indigenous Palestinian population creating a long-festering and long-suffering Palestinian refugee problem. A struggle for self-determination is legitimate in international law, as it expresses a struggle for freedom, the basic quality of life necessary in order for human beings to be able to fulfill their potential as individual persons and as social beings. Those who deny such self-determination are guilty of violating that same international law. That this denial of such a right is the case with respect to Palestinians can be found in several letters of correspondence of British ministers. In a letter to the Prime Minister by Lord Arthur Balfour dated 19th February [1919 LB] he states:
… The weak point of our position of course is that in the case of Palestine we deliberately and rightly [sic LB] decline to accept the principle of self-determination. If the present inhabitants were consulted they would unquestionably give an anti-Jewish verdict. Our justification for our policy is that we regard Palestine as being absolutely exceptional; that we consider the question of the Jews outside Palestine as one of world importance and that we conceive the Jews to have an historic claim to a home in their ancient land; provided that home can be given them without either dispossessing or oppressing the present inhabitants…
In a later memorandum addressed to Lord Curzon by Lord Balfour on 11 August 1919 a similar notion is repeated:
… The contradiction between the letters of the Covenant [League of Nations Covenant LB] and the Policy of the Allies is even more flagrant in the case of the ‘independent nation’ of Palestine than in that of the ‘independent nation’ of Syria. For in Palestine we do not propose even to go through the form of consulting the wishes of the present inhabitants of the country, though the American Commission has been going through the form of asking what they are.
The Four Great Powers are committed to Zionism. And Zionism, be it right or wrong, good or bad, is rooted in age-long traditions, in present needs, in future hopes, of far profounder import than the desires and prejudices of the 700,000 Arabs who now inhabit that ancient land.
In my opinion that is right. What I have never been able to understand is how it can be harmonized with the declaration [Anglo-French of November 1918], the Covenant or the instructions to the Commission of Enquiry.
I do not think that Zionism will hurt the Arabs, but they will never say they want it. Whatever be the future of Palestine it is not now an ‘independent nation,’ nor is it yet on the way to become one. Whatever deference should be paid to the views of those living there, the Powers in their selection of a mandatory do not propose, as I understand the matter, to consult them. In short, so far as Palestine is concerned, the Powers have made no declaration of policy which, at least in the letter, they have not always intended to violate…
(Doreen Ingrams, Palestine Papers 1917-1922 Seeds of Conflict [London 1972] pp. 61 and 73).
Despite the Great Powers flagrant denial of Palestinian rights at the time, such denial did not and does not give rise to either their loss or their falling into desuetude. As long as a people wish to realize such rights, they have the right to demand their realization. The Palestinians never relinquished these rights, although they have made innumerable attempts to reach a modus vivendi with the Zionist state. Their accommodation has been rejected for the very reason that a compromise and shared condominium in Palestine is not part of the Zionist program and never was.
We could therefore come to the following conclusion at this point. The Palestinians have the right to resist on several grounds. Firstly in response to the Israeli provocation in the form of the assassination of Ahmed Jabari . (We can imagine an Israeli response to an assassination of Ehud Barak or any other minister). Secondly they have the right of resistance to the actual decades long Israeli genocidal control over Gaza which is bringing about the actual physical demise of the population which exhibits a general level of ill-health attributable directly to the Israeli stranglehold over the territory. Thirdly, they have the right of resistance against the continuing incursions, raids, arrests, imprisonments, and suppression of economic activity in the West Bank/East Jerusalem. And fourthly, the actual fact of their being forcibly denied their political rights justifies resistance.
So why are the Palestinians in general, and Hamas in particular, depicted as Terrorists?
The term ‘terrorist’ is not a legal term and has no legal reference. It has been manufactured in order to bypass the limitations that international law imposes with respect to the manner of dealing with an adversary. It is used to demonize those people who do not agree with the US/Israel/European hegemonic demand and rule of the world and it is especially used in order to deny such people the right of resistance, the right to struggle as freedom fighters. It is this terminology which has created such confusion and discrepancy in the general public’s understanding with respect to the reality in Palestine and the actual state of affairs that prevails there. But we may ask the further question as to why Palestinians are seen in the West as “terrorists” and intransigent murderers, a people who understand only violence and not peace.
In order to understand this conundrum, it is necessary to understand the nature of American society in particular, and its mechanisms of control. The United States is a capitalist society in which power is exercised by the financial-media-military-industrial complex. A main source of capitalist exploitation is the oil deposits in the Middle East, its refinement and distribution to the rest of the world. It is a sine qua non for the controlling capitalist elite that it controls these resources and their disposition. Such control is not in the interests of the local populations of the territories in which the oil is deposited, who are nearly all Muslims.
In order to minimize, if not eliminate, the critics and critiques of capitalist exploitation, the United States uses the media to manipulate the minds of its population, as Professors Noam Chomsky and Edward Herman explained in their book Manufacturing Consent. However, since the second Bush administration, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) — a title straight out of George Orwell’s 1984 — was formed to exercise further control over the population through the use of policing power. The events of 9/11 have been exploited exponentially by both the media and the DHS towards the demonization of Islam and Muslims, and Palestinians automatically fall into this category. All are deemed to be terrorists or potential terrorists, and therefore they are, by definition, the enemy. The level of propaganda generated by the media branch of this complex, to which the populations in the West are subject, in particular in the United States and Israel, has brainwashed the population into an automatic negative response to all Muslims, Palestinians included.
The Muslims as terrorist, Islam as a religion of violence and hatred, the Jew as eternal victim, the Holocaust as a unique historical event, the uniqueness of which is echoed in the political manifesto of ‘manifest destiny’ and ‘exceptionalism’ of the United States of America, the ‘good guys” of World Wars I and II, constitutes the current propaganda pastiche determining the limits of politically correct discourse. Any criticism against Israel is automatically translated into anti-Semitism and criticism of the United States is unpatriotic or even treason.
The Palestinian political party of Hamas is on the terrorist list in the US and several Muslims have been convicted and imprisoned for extended periods, in one case for more than twenty years, for the crime of aiding and abetting terrorists by sending humanitarian aid to Palestine. Israel has never ceased to refer to Palestinians as terrorists and treats them as such accordingly. As mentioned earlier, it has broken and/or undermined all its agreements with the Palestinians, the most egregious violation being the continuation of the building of Jewish settlements in the West Bank conquered in 1967, becoming a colonizing power, which is in direct violation of international law. In addition, Israel has violated all United Nations Resolutions but is protected by the US veto, thus providing it with a long leash to do what it wants in Palestine. The reality of Israeli force, the reality of its illegalities constitutes a violation of both the moral and the legal order. It is known by both Israel and the US and therefore there is such vicious continuing propaganda against Arabs, Muslims and Palestinians.
There can be little doubt that there is no easy solution for the Palestinians. Despite their rights de iure as well as de facto and their legitimate resistance and struggle and the use of weapons that do not come up to the minimum standards of a modern army, it is only the victimized people of the world who understand their plight together with those coming from the West who are termed radicals. At this juncture in history the people have no power, but it behooves us to continue the struggle for freedom and justice in any way we can, without destroying the planet, as our friends the capitalists are doing. If, however, there is one iron law of life and existence, which must sustain our hope and energy, it is that all institutions, all powers, ultimately collapse because everything is changing and temporary in our contingent world. Situations cannot help but change. When such a change comes in the distribution of power, we should be ready to institute a reign of justice and peace for the well-being of all of mankind.
The entire enterprise of a Jewish state in Palestine is built upon an express rejection of international law. The only legitimate grounds for political sovereignty of an indigenous people are the laws of ius soli or ius sanguine as recognized in international law, which translates into a right of sovereignty based upon habitation in a particular territory or being a descendent of someone in a particular territory. The third option granting a right to sovereignty would be the discovery of a terra nullius that is an uninhabited territory. Palestine was never a terra nullius, and its inhabitants were entitled to a sovereign state in Palestine as part of Greater Syria, if they so chose, according to the ius soli following the demise of the Ottoman Empire at the end of World War I in 1917 and 1918. If their children were out of the country at the time of its establishment at a particular time, then they would be granted citizenship on the grounds of the ius sanguine if they had not been born in Palestine or Greater Syria.
European Jewry did not fulfill either of these qualifications in 1917, when the Balfour Declaration, a document prepared by international Jewish leadership, and addressed by Lord Arthur Balfour, the United Kingdom’s Foreign secretary at the time, to Lord Walter Rothschild, a scion of the leading Jewish banking family in the world, resident in England, was written supporting a Jewish homeland [sic] in Palestine.
The carving up of historical Palestine to excise the bulk of its territory for an imported unequivocally foreign population at the expense of the indigenous society was recognized not to be a politically legitimate action. Its destructive consequences should have been obvious a priori, and history has proved such expectation accurate. Such an excision has harmed the indigenous population in every and all aspects of its life: political, economic, social, educational, cultural, religious, historical and geographical. The destruction of Palestine, the expulsion of the overwhelming majority of its population and the deliberate and continuing genocidal attacks on the remaining population living under Jewish conquest, only highlights the illegitimacy of the Jewish presence and its continuing aggression against the Palestinians.
Lynda Burstein Brayer, a graduate of the Hebrew University of Jerusalem Faculty of Law, is a radical political and legal commentator who practiced human rights law in Palestine/Israel representing Palestinians in their struggles against house demolitions, land theft, and family destruction and in their efforts to obtain travel permits for health, study and family reasons. She lives in Haifa and can be reached at email@example.com
Lynda will be pleased to respond to any comments and queries via the comments section below.
I simply want to thank you for this history. And beyond: for caring. Just as resistance is the secret of joy, caring for others as for ourselves is the secret of peace.
Enduring news of the brutal murder of defenseless friends is perhaps the hardest reality to experience. All that makes it bearable is learning that they, and we, are not alone.
Anonymous #2: For the sake of argument, let’s say you’re right. The fact still reimans though, that we have two peoples here, vying for this same area of land, and neither group is going anywhere. So, do we continue to squabble about whose narrative is more correct, whose claims have greater validity, or do we try to work with the facts as they are today and try to reach a compromise that will be the most rewarding and the least painful for both sides?I believe that there are people on both sides of this equation who realize this, even if we’re not currently at a point in time where it is possible to remedy the situation.Oh, and by the way, I’d really appreciate it if in the future, you didn’t try to tell me what I “must” remember, or what I “need” to do. The people who know me will tell you that I don’t generally respond well when ordered to do something. You are more than welcome to disagree with me or other commenters here, and I pride myself on maintaining a forum where all sorts of people feel comfortable leaving comments. Indeed, we have had some pretty amazing exchanges around here. I do not, however, tolerate insults or patronizing attitudes, so I’d be grateful if you didn’t resort to either when making comments in the future.
Thanks Lynda for your “sustainable” thinking and crtitical writing.
I quote Ms Walker and modify, “Just as unjust aggression is the secret of intolerance, caring for others as for ourselves is the secret of humanity”
In the endnote you wrote “The only legitimate grounds for political sovereignty of an indigent people are the laws of ius soli or ius sanguine as recognized in international law,…”.
I did not know the word ‘indigent’ and had to look it up. Oxford Dictionaries online defines it as
a charity for the relief of indigent artists
a needy person.”
Is there another meaning i.e. legal or US which might make more sense of this sentence?
Which laws recognized in international law (and existing in 1917) are you referring to please?
The word ‘indigent’ was a typo and has now been corrected.
Can I just remind you that you have not yet replied to the second part of my post i.e. Which laws recognized in international law (and existing in 1917) are you referring to please?
The two terms ius soli and ius sanguinis are the laws. The meaning of ius or jus is law. These are the most basic of conventional law and have been incorporated into all modern legal systems as a matter of necessity. One has the right to citizenship in the territory – on the soi – on which one is born and/or (depending on the legal system) either or as well, one has the right to citizenship as a descendent of a citizen of a particular territory.
I cannot believe what i have just read, you have stated what I have always felt about the Middle East situation using cited examples and proofs in a very logical manner that i could not have possibly been able to explain in my own words. I feel now as if you read my thoughts and put them in a readable language on paper. I must say again that I still cannot believe how accurate you where to what i was thinking all this time but unable to say due to lack of words and proof. Thank you so much for writing this, I feel so re leaved there are people who feel the same way I feel. Thank you for posting this.
The surviving Boston Marathon bomber said his motive was “defense of Islam”. If one takes this to mean he was motivated by US military action in the Middle East, that may be wrong. It may mean that putting obstacles to the spread of Sharah justifies an ATTACK, but that it is referred to as a defensive measure. According to JC Myer’s excellent review of Pakistani General Malik’s book, “The Quranic Concept of War with a preface by Pakistan’s former Ambassador Brohi, “DEFENSE” may mean “ATTACK” under the Quranic Concept of War. ”
Clausewitz tells us a lot about Western philosophy of war but we don’t know very much about the Quranic concept of war. Pakistani General Malik has written a book on that subject. What is fascinating about it is the Islamic concept of just when it is that Muslims are fighting a DEFENSIVE war. It they believe a country is interfering with the spread of Shariah, under their philosophy of war, they are entitled to attack it, but they call it a DEFENSE of Islam. Before the captured Boston Marathon bombers was Mirandized, he said he was “defending Islam” You might think that he meant the West’s defensive wars in the Middle East motivated his attack.
In the preface Ambassador Brohi implies that Malik’s discussion, though a valuable new version, is an approach to a theme already well developed.
“Brohi then defines jihad, “The most glorious word in the Vocabulary of Is lam is Jehad, a word which is untranslatable in English but, broadly speaking, means ‘striving’, ‘struggling’, ‘trying’ to advance the Divine causes or purposes.” He introduces a somewhat cryptic concept when he explains man’s role in a “Quranic setting” as energetically combating forces of evil or what may be called, “counter-initiatory” forces which are at war with the harmony and the purpose of life on earth.16 For the true Muslin the harmony and purpose in life are only possible through man’s ultimate submission to God’s will, that all will come to know, recognize, and profess Moham- med as the Prophet of God. Man must recognize the last days and acknowledge tawhid, the oneness of God.
Brohi recounts the classic dualisms of Islamic theology; that the world is a place of struggle between good and evil, between right and wrong, between Haq and Na-Haq (truth and untruth), and between halal and haram (legitimate and forbid- den). According to Brohi, it is the duty of man to opt for goodness and reject evil. Brohi appeals to the “greater jihad,” a post-classical jihad doctrine developed by the mystical Sufi order and other Shia scholars.
When a believer sees that someone is trying to obstruct another believer from travel- ing the road that leads to God, spirit of Jehad requires that such a man who is impos- ing obstacles should be prevented from doing so and the obstacles placed by him should also be removed, so that mankind may be freely able to negotiate its own path that leads to Heaven.” To do otherwise, “by not striving to clear or straighten the path we [Muslims] become passive spectators of the counter-initiatory forces imposing a blockade in the way of those who mean to keep their faith with God.
This comment is not relevant and has no bearing on the article. Above and beyond that it is somewhat incomprehensible, inaccurate and obviously written in a derogatory spirit against Islam – an attitude I do not accept at all.
Take your talking points back to your eastern European shtetls. Palestine belongs to Palestinians not for a ideology from anywhere but PALESTINE. Basic common sense
I think you missed several sources that are relevant to the questions of ownership of the collective political rights in Palestine. You can find a short answer in https://www.academia.edu/14948195/Palestine_–_The_Jewish_People_s_State_under_International_Law
A more detailed response is located at SSRN.com/abstract=2385304
In 1920 at San Remo, the Allied Principal War Powers adopted the British Balfour policy in which the Jewish People would be recognized as having an unrestricted right of immigration into Palestine from the diaspora, and when they had attained a population majority in Palestine and the capability of exercising sovereignty, their beneficial interest would change to legal dominion and they could set up a state government and administer it. This agreement to create a trust at San Remo resulted in drawing up a trust agreement that was tailored by the British so as not to stir up the Arabs because if they needed to use troops to keep order, they would have to take them from France where they were bogged down in trench warfare. This policy was specifically explained to the Arabs after the war in London when an Arab delegation asked when the people of Palestine would have the right of self-government. Churchill explained to them that would occur when the Jewish People had attained a population majority in Palestine.
Placing the group political rights in trust was the idea of Harry Sacher who had written the first draft of the Balfour Declaration. In 1919 he published a short book in which he compared five methods of attaining a Jewish Palestine and selected the method of placing the group political rights in a trust in which the trustee was Britain and which would vest when the territory involved had a Jewish population majority and became capable of exercising sovereignty.
Mr Brand. Harry Sacher and any other Zionist or Jew may write whatever he desires/ Nothing written can legitimately undo international law and as I wrote, the law of ius soli /
One of the central principles repeated in the fourteen points of Woodrow Wilson at Versailles was and remains “the right of self-determination”/
No-one, and no body, had the right to deprive the local majority population of Palestine of its right of self-determination, ie the right called ius soli. The rights of those born on the soil.
Whatever Harry Sacher or others wrote, it was not, and remains, not binding upon anyone, least of all the Palestinians. And anything Winston Churchill might have asserted to the contrary, does not acquire legitimacy with the passing years, nor did it have legitimacy at the time he might have made the assertion.
Dear Ms Brayer,
What you do not recognize is that under International Law Palestine west of the Jordan was in 1920 placed in trust for the Jewish People. Why? Because of their historic association with Palestine. It is likely you haven’t read the recommendations of “The Inquiry”, a report to Woodrow Wilson on January 21, 1919 when he and members of The Inquiry were attending the Paris Peace Talks. As summarized by Mr. Westermann who was there to help the Americans negotiate the treaty with Turkey, current ethnic self-determination was intended to apply in most cases, but not in the case of Palestine where the problem was not just a local one on who should govern, but a world problem. If you read the San Remo Resolution carefully, you will see that current ethnic population was to determine self-government in Syria and Mesopotamia, but not in Palestine. That is because the Jews in Palestine overall, were only one sixth the population. It was intended that the collective political rights would be placed in trust until the Jews had a population majority where they were to rule, and the capability of exercising sovereignty. The Allied Principal War Powers were the settlors of the trust. It is their intention that is, under law, the lodestar of interpretation of the trust. You will find this intention in a memorandum of the British Foreign Office dated December 19, 1917 explaining the Balfour Declaration, and in the Report of The Inquiry dated January 21, 1919.
The Arabs in Palestine never exercised sovereignty over Palestine. For 400 years prior to 1920, it was undisputed that Turkey exercised that sovereignty. As the victors in a defensive war against Turkey, the Allies negotiated new boundaries with it and Palestine, Syria, and Mesopotamia were outside those boundaries. The Allies had the right to annex the territories no longer under Turkish sovereignty or to recognize another as having those collective rights. They recognized the Jewish People.
The allies had NO RIGHT TO ANNEX the territories no longer under Turkish sovereignty. They had NO RIGHT to deprive the local population living in Palestine of their right to self-determination.
The bible is NOT A TITLE DEED.
I shall not be posting on this subject again.
The Ottomans had sovereignty over Palestine for 400 years before WWI. The Allies won this territory in a defensive war and the Ottomans agreed to relinquish the territory. The Allies could have annexed the area but chose to promote Jewish immigration and when the Jews attained a population majority and the capability to exercise sovereignty the collective political rights to the territory vested, they obtained legal dominion over them and the Jewish People’s statehood could be recognized. The Mandate was a legal instrument that was self-executing. The Jews met the standards of the settlors in 1948 for the area within the Green Line and in 1967 for the remainder of the area west of the Jordan. I don’t rely on the bible for international law, only for halakhah law [Jewish law]. Under international law recognition may be tacit. Confirmation of the provisions of the mandate by the US, the UK and 50 ore members of the League of nations was tacit recognition of the statehood of the Jewish People. SSRN.com/abstract=2679399
If you are going to rely on international law, Ms Brayer, you must do a little research first and not just attribute the support for Jewish sovereignty to the Bible. It is the Arabs that do not have a shred of factual and legal support for their claim that would support their statehood under international law. Under those circumstances, trading land-for-peace is just giving in to extortion.
I remind you that the 1922 League of Nations British Mandate for Palestine was a Class A Mandate, i. e, Palestine was to be administered by Britain AS A WHOLE until its citizens were able to assume democratic self-rule
By incorporating the Balfour Declaration the mandate did facilitate Jewish immigration to “secure the establishment of the Jewish National Home,” but it did not call for the creation of a sovereign Jewish state or homeland in Palestine or any form of partition. This was made very clear in the Churchill Memorandum (1 July 1922) regarding the British Mandate: “[T]he status of all citizens of Palestine in the eyes of the law shall be Palestinian, and it has never been intended that they, or any section of them, should possess any other juridical status.
“Furthermore, regarding the British Mandate, as approved by the Council of the League of nations, the British government declared: “His Majesty’s Government therefore now declare unequivocally that it is not part of their policy that Palestine should become a Jewish State.” (Command Paper, 1922)
To make it absolutely clear, in May 1939, the British government issued the MacDonald White Paper, which in accordance with the Mandate, ruled out any possibility of a Jewish state, and declared Great Britain “could not have intended Palestine should be converted into a Jewish state against the will of the Arab population of the country.” It called for a Palestinian state in which Jews and Arabs would govern jointly based on a constitution to be drafted by their representatives and those of Britain. The constitution would safeguard the “Jewish National Home” in Palestine and if good relations developed between Jews and Arabs, the country would be granted independence in ten years. Land sales to Jews were to be restricted and the annual level of Jewish immigration was to be limited to 15,000 for five years, following which, Palestinian Arab acquiescence would be required.
Hence, consistent with the terms of its Class A Mandate and the MacDonald White Paper, Britain abstained on the UNGA vote regarding the recommendatory only Nov. 29/47 Partition Plan.
Today’s Jordan (referred to as Transjordan by the Allies after WWI) was not part of Palestine. As Ottoman maps attest, it was administered separately from Palestine, the dividing line being the Jordan River. Known to locals as Al Baqa, the area east of the Jordan River, which became the Emirate of Transjordan in 1923 (as partial fulfillment of Britain’s pledge in the July 1915 to March 1916 Hussein/McMahon correspondence to grant the Arabs independence – including Palestine – in exchange for their invaluable assistance in defeating the Turks during WWI) was part of the Turkish vilayet (province) of Syria. The area west of the river was governed by the Ottomans as three sanjaks (sub provinces), two of which (Acre and Nablus) formed part of the vilayet of Beirut, while the third was the independent sanjak of Jerusalem.
Apart from the fact that what became known as Transjordan was not part of historical Palestine, the League of Nations and Britain never considered including it permanently as part of the Palestine Mandate given the fact that its population was very much ethnically different from that of Palestine. Palestinians were primarily a settled people (800 villages and 24 towns) dependent on an agricultural economy. The inhabitants of Southern Syria/Transjordan (largely desert and steppe with a narrow strip of cultivable land and little urban development) were descended from the Arab tribes of the northwestern part of the Arabian Peninsula and were largely nomadic.
Furthermore, British Prime Minister Lloyd George consulted a Bible Dictionary and Atlas to establish the boundaries of Palestine. He not only used the formula “from Dan to Beersheba”, but also relied on the account concerning Joshua and the children of Israel crossing the Jordan to enter the “Promised Land.”
I also remind you that it was reliably estimated at the time that the number of Jews living permanently in the Ottoman province that became know as Transjordan was three at most.
In 1921, i.e., before the League of Nations British Class A Palestine Mandate was instituted, Britain agreed to recognize Abdullah ibn Hussein al Hashem as the ruler of Transjordan. Transjordan became an autonomous emirate under Abdullah in 1923
If you look at the map accompanying the letter agreement that Chaim Weizmann entered into with Prince Faisal, you will see that what was initially considered as Palestine extended east of the Jordan to just short of the Arab Damascus-Hejaz Railway. Later, Palestine was extended to the Iraq border.
You are not writing a comment. You are trying to re-write my article.
Write your own one and open it up to comments.
As far as I am concerned you do not understand international law, have no understanding of self-determination and insist on pushing your own Zionist ideology both upon myself and on the readers of my article.
I ask you to desist from this in the future.
Thanks for this piece have shared it far and wide. About time to right this 68 yr wrong (western implantation in the Levant).
In short, foreign Jews had the same right to take over Palestine as Irish Catholics and Mexican atheists, i.e., none whatsoever.
Could not agree with you more!!!!