TABLE OF CONTENTS

A brief description of each article followed by the link – beginning with the most recent.

On Independence Day UNESCO declares Israel has no connection to Jerusalem – If there remained any doubt of the anti-Israel bias of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), today that doubt has been dispelled in the passing of the “resolution on Occupied Palestine”. UNESCO voted today (Tuesday May 2 2017), on Israel Independence Day (Yom HaAtzmaut) – the holiday commemorating 69 years since the re-birth of the state of Israel, to pass a resolution declaring that Israel has no legal or historical right to any part of Jerusalem. It also declares that the Cave of the Patriarchs in Hebron, where the Jewish Patriarchs Abraham, Isaac and Jacob are buried are “Palestinian sites”, as is Rachel’s Tomb near Bethlehem. http://www.morehasbara.com/2017/05/02/on-independence-day-unesco-declares-israel-has-no-connection-to-jerusalem/

Israel’s Right to Build in Judea & Samaria upheld by French Court? According to a blog article published on January 13 2017 that has been getting circulated widely on social media, the High Court of Versailles has ruled that Israel has the right to ensure order and public life in “the West Bank”, which includes building infrastructure and dwellings. This article examines the court records and exactly what the French Court ruled. http://www.morehasbara.com/2017/01/16/israels-right-to-build-in-judea-samaria-upheld-by-french-court/

Paris Peace Summit – responding to the final declaration – Sunday, January 15 2017 representatives from more than 70 Nations met in Paris, France for the Paris Peace Summit – one which neither Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu nor Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas were invited. In Israel, this conference was described as “a wedding with neither bride nor groom”. While the final declaration was considerably more restrained than the draft summary statement, there are serious issues with Paris Conference Declaration. http://www.morehasbara.com/2017/01/15/paris-peace-summit-responding-to-the-final-declaration/

Upcoming Paris Conference – text, terms and implications – Representatives from 70 Nations will gather in Paris, France Sunday, January 15 2017 for a conference ironically called the Paris Peace Summit with the sole purpose of implementing their vision for a “two-state solution”.  Neither Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu nor Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas will be present at the meeting. Haaretz news, a left-wing news outlet obtained and published (Barak Ravid Jan 09, 2017 7:40 PM) a draft summary statement for this conference and the full text appears below this article. http://www.morehasbara.com/2017/01/12/upcoming-paris-conference-text-terms-and-implications/


Jerusalem – modern and historic capital of the Jewish people – a summary of the Historic & Modern history of Jerusalem, including when the Arabs first arrived in the Land, the foundation of the modern state, the 1948 War of Independence and the Six Say War. Most importantly, how the recent UN Resolution 2334 contradicts historic agreements. http://www.morehasbara.com/2016/12/27/jerusalem-modern-and-historic-capital-of-the-jewish-people/


Security Forces Ready to Evict Amona Residents – pending vote on new proposal — Security forces are preparing for the eviction of Amona residents should they reject the state’s latest offer, which addresses none of the concerns that resulted in them rejecting the previous one. This “new offer” looks very much like the “old offer”  except 24 families, instead of 12 families  will be crammed into trailers on Lot 38, while the other 18 families will be relocated to Ofra. http://www.morehasbara.com/2016/12/18/security-forces-ready-to-evict-amona-residents-pending-vote-on-new-proposal/


Ultimatum in Amona – update December 15 2016 – The residents of Amona face an excruciating decision today – the end result of a crisis created for political advancement. Their ‘options’ outlined here. http://www.morehasbara.com/2016/12/15/ultimatum-in-amona-update-dec-15-2016/


Judea and Samaria – the West Bank of the Jordan – To understand the present issues with regards to Jewish inhabitants in outpost towns in Judea and Samaria*, in the so-called “disputed territories”, requires some knowledge of the modern history of region. This article provides that brief history. http://www.morehasbara.com/2016/12/13/judea-samaria-west-bank-jordan/



Struggle for Amona – Struggle for National Sovereignty – Amona will be demolished Dec 24th due to a ruling that says it was built on private Arab land – land seized from Israel and illegally annexed by Jordan, then given away by her King, as gifts: http://www.morehasbara.com/2016/12/13/struggle-amona-struggle-national-sovereignty-2/



The Middle-East Situation (Illustrated) – The situation in the Middle East is said to be one of the most complex problems in the world, but it’s very simple. This post was compiled from a transcript from Dennis Prager’s video “The Middle East Problem” and photos captured from that video. Prager explains how and when the modern state of Israel was founded and how, since that day in 1948, its neighbours have tried to destroy it, again and again. http://www.morehasbara.com/2016/11/27/middle-east-situation-illustrated/


Current Map of Israel’s Fires – The map in blue, below clearly shows that Israel is burning, but notice where the fires are burning, and where they are not. Overwhelmingly, it is Israel that burning compared with Gaza or the ‘West Bank’ (Judea and Samaria). How is it that it is mainly Israel that has “wildfires”? http://www.morehasbara.com/2016/11/24/current-map-of-israels-fires/


A Powerful Silent Response to Antisemitism in America – in photos – These photos are from a powerful 2 minute video posted by Rudy Rochman (link below). They tell a story – a very powerful story.  The story is of the choice people like you and I now face – and will increasingly face in the days ahead: the choice between apathy or taking a stand. http://www.morehasbara.com/2016/10/19/a-powerful-silent-response-to-antisemitism-in-america-in-photos/


UNESCO Adopts ‘Occupied Palestine’ Resolution – Following Mexico’s withdrawal of its intention yesterday to force a re-vote one day before the close of proceedings, the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) has adopted its controversial “Occupied Palestine” Resolution. http://www.morehasbara.com/2016/10/18/unesco-adopts-occupied-palestine-resolution/


Vote on UNESCO’s Temple Mount Resolution to be Reopened? UNESCO’s executive board may now be required to reopen voting on last week’s controversial resolution which effectively denied the Jewish connection to both the Temple Mount and the Western Wall, as the Mexican government now seeks to change its vote. http://www.morehasbara.com/2016/10/18/vote-on-unescos-temple-mount-resolution-to-be-reopened/


UNESCO denies Jewish connection to Temple Mount again – The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) passed a resolution today (October 13, 2016) denying the Jewish connection to the Temple Mount and the Western Wall. UNESCO resolution acknowledges that the city of Jerusalem is holy to Judaism, Islam, and Christianity, it refers to the Temple Mount only as being sacred to Muslims – ignoring its significance to Jews. It refers to the Temple Mount only by the site’s Muslim names (al-Aqsa Mosque / al-Haram al Sharif and omits any mention of its Hebrew or English names and refers to the Western Wall only as al-Buraq Plaza. http://www.morehasbara.com/2016/10/13/unesco-denies-jewish-connection-temple-mount/


UN Demands Release of Worker Arrested for Aiding Hamas and Calls Beersheva by Arabic Name – in a letter to the Israeli delegation this week, the UN called for the release of a worker who Shin Bet arrested last month for funneling funds to Hamas.  In doing so, the UN referred to Beersheva (a city tied to the Patriarchs Abraham and Isaac and whose ancient remains date to the 12th and 11th century) by its Arabic name Ber asaabeaa. 
http://www.morehasbara.com/2016/08/26/un-demands-release-of-worker-arrested-for-aiding-hamas-and-calls-beersheva-by-arabic-name/


Supreme Muslim Authority Contradicts the Palestinian Authority’s Claims – The Palestinian Authority claimed that Israel is attempting to falsify a Jewish link to Jerusalem and the Temple Mount. Ironically, historic documents from the supreme Arab-Muslim authority in Jerusalem contradicts their claim.

Is the al-Aqsa Mosque in Jerusalem the one mentioned in the Qu’uran? – A lecturer with the Department of Arabic at Bar-Ilan University and expert in military intelligence, Arab political discourse and Arab mass media recently raised some doubt as to whether the al-Aqsa Mosque in Jerusalem is same al-Aqsa Mosque mentioned in the Qu’uran. If it is not, that would shed a very different light on ‘Palestinian’ claims that the Temple Mount is the 3rd holiest site in Islam. http://www.morehasbara.com/2016/08/16/is-the-al-aqsa-mosque-in-jerusalem-the-one-in-the-quuran/


Gaza in photos only – See Gaza and you’ve never imagined it — certainly not the Gaza we see in the media. These are photos screen captured from the video in the previous post. A picture speaks 1000 words. 

Hamas video shows a very different Gaza –Is Gaza a place of immeasurable suffering and oppression as it’s been portrayed in the media or a beautiful travel destination? This recently released 2 1/2 minute video produced by Hamas shows Gaza as you’ve never seen it! This not the Gaza you’ve seen in the news.
http://www.morehasbara.com/2016/08/11/new-hamas-video-shows-a-very-different-gaza/


Terrorism – what delineates radical Islamists from moderate Muslims Some say that horrific acts of terrorism such as we saw in Nice, France yesterday and have seen in recent days in Tel Aviv, Brussels, Paris, Orlando, San Bernardino, Istanbul, and Lahore were never commanded by Allah http://www.morehasbara.com/2016/07/15/terrorism-what-delineates-radical-islamists-from-moderate-muslims/


Is Palestinian Terrorism Driven Poverty or the Need to Defend the al-Aqsa Mosque – this article explores two common justifications given for violence against Jewish Israelis; that it is caused by the poverty and deprivation of ‘Palestinians’ or by Jewish desecration of Islamic holy sites such as the al-Aqsa mosque. http://www.morehasbara.com/2016/07/13/palestinian-terrorism-is-driven-by-a-hatred-for-jews-not-poverty-or-the-al-asqa-mosque/


3 Articles on Islam –
This is a single page summary of each of three articles in a series on Islam, with links to each article. Each article is short, easy to read and has references. http://www.morehasbara.com/2016/06/16/3-articles-on-islam/


Taqiyya – the Deliberate Deception of Islam – Moderate Muslims will often assure non-Muslims that Islam is a religion of peace and that taqiyya (deliberate deception) is no longer practiced. The very nature of taqiyya should cause us to question whether such claims are in themselves, deceptions.


A Difference of Interpretation – what Separates Moderates from Jihadis – Moderates Muslims view passages that call for killing, beheading or crucifixion of unbelievers, infidels and hypocrites in light of other passages and conclude that the violent passages cannot be interpreted literally. Jihadis hold to a form of interpretation that requires them to replace earlier passages with later passages. This post examines this fundamental difference. http://www.morehasbara.com/2016/06/14/ja-difference-of-interpretation-what-separates-moderates-from-jihadists/


If 99% of Muslims are peaceful, how many is 1%? Taking  the conservative estimate that 99% of Muslims are peaceful and based on current data from Pew Research Center, we look at how many is 1% of Muslims and what does that number “look like”?   http://www.morehasbara.com/2016/06/13/assuming-99-of-muslims-are-peaceful-how-man-is-1-percent/


Tel Aviv Shootings; Photo Documentation from 3 Perspectives: They say that a picture says a thousand words. Photo documentation of the shootings in Tel Aviv from Israeli, Palestinian and Media perspectives.

The ‘Palestinian’ Narrative; descended from the Philistines: Mahmoud Abbas recently claimed Palestinians descended from Philistines & predate Abraham – which makes them neither sons of Abraham nor Arabs, but Aegeans. http://www.morehasbara.com/2016/06/07/problems-with-the-palestinian-narrative-descended-from-the-philistines/


The (((Echo))) – Identifying and Targeting Jews Online – The symbol ((())) known as an “echo” is used on social media to target and harass Jews and expose “Jewish collusion” in controlling media & politics. http://www.morehasbara.com/2016/06/06/the-echo-identifying-and-targeting-jews-online/


American University Students Fund Terror Attacks in Israel – Students on this American campus readily donated money to fund suicide bombers to attack Israeli cafes, shopping malls, schools, & Jewish places of worship.
http://www.morehasbara.com/2016/05/24/american-university-students-fund-terror-attacks-in-israel/


King Solomon’s Wall Discovered Outside 2nd Temple Wall –While the UN ignores that the Temple Mount has any Jewish heritage, archaeologists have uncovered part of the wall of Solomon’s Temple, 10th century BCE. http://www.morehasbara.com/2016/05/21/king-solomons-wall-discovered-outside-2nd-temple-wall/


8 Million People View 3 Lies About Israel in Just 4 Days -This “news video” from AJ+ [Al Jazeera in a new package] reached 8 million people in the last 4 days — over 5 million views in just the first 24 hours.  http://www.morehasbara.com/2016/05/16/when-8-million-people-view-3-blatant-lies-about-israel-in-just-4-days/


Is the Temple Mount Really Islam’s 3rd Holiest Site? ‘Palestinians’ claim the Temple Mount (“Haram esh-Sharif” or “Noble Sanctuary”) has always their holy site, yet photographic evidence testifies otherwise. http://www.morehasbara.com/2016/05/05/the-temple-mount-islams-3rd-holiest-site/


Where did the Palestinians of Today Come From? Central to the discussion regarding the Land is where those that call themselves ‘Palestinians’ came from, why and when. Fully referenced. http://www.morehasbara.com/2015/11/10/where-did-the-palestinians-of-today-come-from/


Hamas’ Radical Islamist Roots in the Muslim Brotherhood – Each Islamist group has their own ‘flavor’ of radical Islam and Hamas is no different. What they have in common are roots in the Muslim Brotherhood. http://www.morehasbara.com/2015/11/03/hamas-radical-islamist-roots-in-the-muslim-brotherhood/


Nazi Influence in the Middle East – Haj Amin al-Husseini  – A 2010 US National Archives report titled “Hitler’s Shadow: Nazi War Criminals, US Intelligence and the Cold War” tells of Nazi influence in the Middle East. Fully referenced many archived photos to support the text. http://www.morehasbara.com/2015/10/24/nazi-influence-in-the-middle-east-haj-amin-al-husseini/


The Mufti and the Fuhrer – background to Nazi Influence in the Middle East – Germany has taken responsibility for the Nazi role during the Holocaust, but what about the Palestinian role; specifically the role of Haj Amin al-Husseini? These are the actual German records of the meeting between al-Husseini and Hitler, as well as the transcripts of each page. http://www.morehasbara.com/2015/10/22/the-mufti-and-the-fuhrer-background-to-nazi-influence-in-the-middle-east/


Background to the Current Palestinian Uprising -The media often attributes the current ‘Palestinian’ uprising to “‘Palestinian’ frustration”; however that is not the case. Background & context in the post http://www.morehasbara.com/2015/10/21/background-to-the-current-palestinian-uprising/


Palestinian Loss of Land Map – Media Deception or Incompetence? A recent MSNBC broadcast displayed a map of alleged “Palestinian Loss of Land’ which is based on well-known Palestinian propaganda maps. http://www.morehasbara.com/2015/10/17/palestinian-loss-of-land-map-media-deception-or-incompetence/


The Current Situation in Israel – How the media frames headlines about events in Israel is very telling as to how these sources want the public to interpret — or not interpret it. http://www.morehasbara.com/2015/10/16/the-current-situation-in-israel/


Where Did the Land that is Currently Israel’s Come From? – Israel is often portrayed in the media as ‘land-grabbing’ and this article documents where the land that is currently Israel came from. http://www.morehasbara.com/2015/10/13/where-did-the-land-that-is-currently-israels-come-from/


Where is Ancient Palestine and Who are the Palestinians? People assume that the Arabs of Gaza and the “West Bank” had their land stolen from them, allegedly by the Jews, so where was “ancient Palestine”?  http://www.morehasbara.com/2015/10/11/where-is-ancient-palestine-who-are-the-palestinians/


Two Previous “Two-state Solutions” – A “Two-State solution” as a means to resolve the ongoing tensions between Israel and the ‘Palestinians’, fails to recognize there have already been two. http://www.morehasbara.com/2015/06/12/the-two-previous-two-state-solutions/

 

On Independence Day UNESCO declares Israel has no connection to Jerusalem

If there remained any doubt of the anti-Israel bias of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), today that doubt has been dispelled in the passing of the “resolution on Occupied Palestine“.

UNESCO voted today (Tuesday May 2 2017), on Israel Independence Day (Yom HaAtzmaut) – the holiday commemorating 69 years since the re-birth of the state of Israel, to pass a resolution declaring that Israel has no legal or historical right to any part of Jerusalem. It also declares that the Cave of the Patriarchs in Hebron, where the Jewish Patriarchs Abraham, Isaac and Jacob are buried are “Palestinian sites”, as is Rachel’s Tomb near Bethlehem.

The resolution on “Occupied Palestine” was submitted to UNESCO by Algeria, Egypt, Lebanon, Morocco, Oman, Qatar and Sudan and refers to Israel throughout the document as the “occupying power” in Jerusalem – and by doing so, indicates that Israel has no historical connection or right to any part of Jerusalem.

In passing this resolution, UNESCO ignores the archaeological evidence that the First Temple (Solomon’s Temple) stood on the Temple Mount  from when it was completed in 827 BCE until it was destroyed by the Babylonians 470 years later. It also ignores the archaeological evidence that the Second Temple, constructed under Zerubbabel and that was completed in 349 BCE  stood on the Temple Mount until it was destroyed in 70 CE by the Romans.

UNESCO’s resolution ignores the fact that the first time an Arab government ruled in that region was in the sixth century CE700 years after the (Jewish) Hasmonean Dynasty ruled. Putting Israel’s ties to the Temple Mount into context, the Jewish people built the First Temple on the Temple Mount almost 1500 years before the Arabs first arrived in Jerusalem!

Despite these facts, today 22 countries voted in favour of the “Occupied Palestine” resolution – denying Israel’s historical connection to Jerusalem, 23 countries abstained and only 10 countries stood on the side of objective, historical archaeological evidence; the US, UK, Italy, the Netherlands, Lithuania, Greece, Paraguay, Ukraine, Togo, and Germany.

What “educational” or “scientific” facts did the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) uphold in passing this resolution?

 

Israel’s Right to Build in Judea & Samaria upheld by French Court?

INTRODUCTION: According to a blog article published on January 13 2017 that has been getting circulated widely on social media, the High Court of Versailles has ruled that Israel has the right to ensure order and public life in “the West Bank”, which includes building infrastructure such as the light rail system and dwellings. This article examines the court records and exactly what the French Court ruled.

Claims According to a Blog Writer

According to a blog article published on January 13 2017, the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) denounced the deportation of the Palestinian population and the destruction of properties in order to build the light rail system, in violation of international regulations and filed a case in French court, relying on both the Geneva Convention and Hague Convention.

According to the article, the PLO claimed that;

“the State of Israel was illegally occupying Palestinian territory and was pursuing illegal Jewish colonization”.

According to this blog, the Palestinians claimed that ‘the construction of the light rail itself was illegal as it resulted in the destruction of Palestinian buildings and houses, the almost-complete destruction of Highway 60 which they asserted was vital for the Palestinian population as well as for transport of their goods’ and has resulted in many “illegal dispossessions”.

The article states that the PLO’s case rested on several clauses of the annexed Regulations to the October 18, 1907 Fourth Hague Convention and alleged that Israel violated the provisions relating to the ‘protection of cultural property’ provided for in Article 4 of the Hague Convention of May 14, 1954, Article 27 of the Hague Convention of 1907, Article 5 of the Hague Convention of 1907, and Article 53 of Additional Protocol No. 1 to the Geneva Convention of 1949.

It maintains that according to the High Court, Israel is entitled to ensure order and public life in the West Bank including building a light rail system,  infrastructure and dwellings in accordance with Article 43 of the Fourth Hague Convention of 1907 which states:

The authority of the legitimate power having in fact passed into the hands of the occupant, the latter shall take all the measures in his power to restore, and ensure, as far as possible, public order and safety.

Furthermore, the article states that the court ruled that the Palestinian Authority “misinterpreted the text” of the Hague and Geneva Conventions:

“The Palestinian Authority misread the documents, they do not apply to the occupation”

…and that the High Court of Versailles ruled that:

1. all the International Documents on which the PLO and the PA cases rested are acts signed between “States” i.e. Hague Convention of 1907 (Article 5, Article 27), Hague Convention of May 14, 1954 (Article 4), Geneva Convention (Article 53 of Additional Protocol No. 1).

…and the obligations or prohibitions contained in those International Documents are relevant only to “States” and since neither the PLO nor the Palestinian Authority are “States”, the Hague Convention of 1907, Hague Convention of 1954 and Geneva Convention (1949) do not apply.


2. the Hague Convention of 1907, Hague Convention of 1954 and Geneva Convention (1949) are binding only on those who signed them – namely the “contracting parties” and since neither the PLO nor the Palestinian Authority ever signed these texts, the Hague Convention of 1907 & 1954 and Geneva Convention of 1949 do not apply to them.

The French Case

The original lawsuit was brought against the French companies, Veolia Transport, Alstom and Alstom Transport that built Jerusalem’s light rail system and was filed by the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) and the Association France Palestine Solidarité (AFPS) claimed that since the trains crossed into East Jerusalem which Israel ‘captured in 1967′  and ‘annexed in 1980′, the French firms were complicit in Israeli violations of international law.

On April 15, 2009, the Tribunal de Grande Instance Court ruled that the the PLO’s petition was inadmissible on the grounds that it had not been submitted that the PLO was competent to act in the case, and the action brought by AFPS was a wrongful third-party action brought on grounds of an improper clause in the contract, but ruled that the AFPS was admissible in terms of its capacity and interest in bringing proceedings. In other words, the case was dismissed on technicality. The court rejected the petition to compel the presentation of additional exhibits, referred investigation of the matter to the presiding magistrate’s preliminary hearing and deferred its ruling on all other petitions, including the counter-claims against the PLO. The parties could re-file.

In Appeal, the Versailles Court of Appeal upheld the April 15, 2009 ruling on December 17, 2009 on the basis that the Nanterre Tribunal de Grande Instance was competent to rule in the dispute.

On March 10, 2010, AFPS lodged a petition before the Paris Administrative Tribunal, claiming liability on the part of the French State due to its support for the French firms taking part in the construction and operation of the Jerusalem tramway, and was dismissed October 28, 2011. They appealed to the Cour de Cassation, the matter was heard in a public hearing on September 12, 2012 before the 2nd and 7th sub-sections of the Council of State and in a ruling handed down on October 3, 2012, they rejected the appeal.

In a ruling handed down on May 30, 2011, the Nanterre Tribunal de Grande Instance, the Court declared the PLO’s intervention dated March 1, 2010 inadmissible and rejected the petitions and counter-claims, declaring there were no grounds for provisional execution, nor for the application of the provisions of Article 700 of the French Code of Civil Procedure and ordered AFPS and the PLO jointly to pay costs. That is, the French Court could not rule on the basis of the PLO’s case as the Hague Conventions and Geneva Conventions, the basis for its case, did not fall under French Law.

The Court ruled that;

  1. the legislation invoked in article 49 (6) and 53 of the Fourth 1949 Geneva Convention, the Regulations of the 1907 Fourth Hague Convention, article 4 of the Hague Convention of 1954 and article 53 of Additional Protocol 1 to the Geneva Conventions of 1949, did not establish direct obligations on private-sector companiesIn other words, these International Documents had no bearing on the obligations of private-sector companies, such as those that built the light rail train system in Jerusalem.

  2. even if it were assumed that conclusion by Israel of the disputed concession contract constituted a breach of its international commitments in the light of said conventions, it had not been proven that this breach had deprived this contract of purpose, the latter being subject to Israeli law and not the French Civil Code (more specifically articles 6, 1131 and 1133). That is, even if were assumed that the contract broke International Law, the case would be subject to Israeli law, not French Civil law.

  3. Construction of the tramway had not been proven to constitute a breach of human rights or humanitarian law in the broadest sense of the term. This was good news in that the court did not find that the building of the light rail system constituted a breach of Palestinian human rights or “humanitarian law”.

The magistrates did not find AFPS responsible for any wrongdoing and dismissed calls for compensation payment.

The AFPS and the PLO formally appealed this ruling on July 7, 2011, asking the Court of Appeal to overturn the decision and declare that the basis of the PLO’s case (Hague Convention and Geneva Convention) was admissible in French Court.

A third Appeal was brought and was filed in the Versailles Court of Appeal by the Association France Palestine Solidarité (AFPS) and the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) represented by Mr Mahmoud Abbas*, President of the Executive Committee, and represented by Mr Hael Al Fahoum, Head of the Palestinian Mission to France and of the PLO.

[*Mahmoud Abbas is head of the Palestinian Authority.]

Court of Appeal’s Ruling on Third Appeal – on March 22, 2013

The Court of Appeal in Versailles ruled that;

The evidence presented does not prove that the transport companies breached International Law;

“In the final analysis, the evidence heard does not prove that by taking part in construction of the tramway across the city of Jerusalem, the defending companies have breached international law“:

The transport companies that bid on the contract were not signatories to the concession contract and therefore cannot answer for it;

“The transport companies (Alstom, Alstom Transport and Veolia Transport) were not signatories to the concession contract signed on September 22, 2004 and cannot answer for its legitimacy in place of the State of Israel, which initiated and established this contract.”

The international humanitarian norms that the PLO and AFPS claimed were breached are not binding on the transport companies;

“The international humanitarian norms that it is claimed have been breached by the shareholder pact signed with CityPass by Alstom Transport and Veolia Transport, and the engineering, supply and construction contract signed with CityPass by Alstom Transport, are not binding on the companies on conventional or customary grounds, or in any capacity of international public order.”

The PLO nor the AFPS have not proven that the transport companies breached international law;

“It has not been proven that the companies have breached international law in the light of their commitments arising from their agreement to the Global Compact (2000) and the contents of their codes of ethics.”

The Appeal Court of Versailles rule that “there are no grounds to rule on the other aspects of liability”; the ruling of the initial magistrates who dismissed the petitions established against these companies is therefore upheld.

The case was dismissed and both the AFPS and the PLO were required to bear both the costs of the appeal and to pay the costs of the original case. 

On 22 March 2013, judges Maître Emmanuel Jullien, Maître Fabrice Hongre-Boyeldieu, Maître Anne-Laure Dumea of the Court of Appeal, threw out the case and according to a 2013 Times of Israel article, ordered the two Palestinian groups to pay a total of 90,000 Euros to the French firms.

A Difference in Facts or Interpretation?

The Versailles Court of Appeal judge’s decisions centered around whether the transport companies were signatories on the concession contract to build the light rail system in Jerusalem and not on whether the PLO or the Palestinian Authority (PA) were “States” or “contracting parties” on the Hague Conventions (1907 and 1954) or the Geneva Convention (1949).

As well, a reading of the Versailles Court of Appeal transcript does not indicate that the court made any ruling with respect to whether Israel has the right to ensure order and public life in the West Bank including building a light rail system and other infrastructure and dwellings in the occupied territories of the West Bank.

The blog writer concludes that this case is the first in which a non-Israeli court has ruled on Israel’s right under the Hague and Geneva Conventions to build infrastructure and dwellings in East Jerusalem and “the West Bank”.

A review of the court transcripts does not indicate that any such ruling took place.

Final thoughts…

Checking facts and tracing references back to their original source is the only way to remain credible in writing articles or in sharing posts on social media.

If is sounds too good to be true, it probably is.

It is each person’s responsibility to find out.

 


Sources

Times of Israel, Raphael Ahren, April 29, 2013, http://www.timesofisrael.com/french-ruling-on-jerusalems-light-rail-adds-nothing-new-scholars-say/

Blog of January 13 2017 http://www.dreuz.info/2017/01/13/israel-is-the-legal-occupant-of-the-west-bank-says-the-court-of-appeal-of-versailles-france/

The transcript of the Court Documents (Versailles Court of Appeals, ruling in English): http://www.intjewishlawyers.org/main/files/Versailles%20Court%20of%20Appeals%20ruling%20doc%20English%20.pdf

Paris Peace Summit – response to the Final Declaration

INTRODUCTION:  Sunday, January 15 2017 representatives from more than 70 Nations met in Paris, France for the Paris Peace Summit – one which neither Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu nor Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas were invited. In Israel, this conference was described as “a wedding with neither bride nor groom”. While the final declaration was considerably more restrained than the draft summary statement, there are serious issues with Paris Conference Declaration.  Some of the issues are a carry over from the previous post, but there are some new issues (highlighted in red).

The full text for the final Paris Conference Declaration appears below this article.

Paris Peace Summit – highlights from Final Conference Declaration

Here are some key highlights from that summary which affirmed and reiterated that;

  1. a negotiated solution with two states, Israel and Palestine, living side by side in peace and security is the only way to achieve enduring peace
  2. reiterated that a negotiated two-state solution should meet the legitimate aspirations of both sides
  3. a negotiated two-state solution should including the Palestinians’ right to statehood and sovereignty
  4. a negotiated two-state solution should fully end the occupation that began in 1967
  5. resolve all permanent status issues on the basis of United Nations Security Council resolutions 242 (1967) and 338 (1973) and also recalled relevant Security Council resolutions
  6. the importance of the Arab Peace Initiative of 2002 as a comprehensive framework for the resolution of the Arab-Israeli conflict
  7. adoption of United Nations Security Council resolution 2334 on 23 December 2016
  8. advance the two-state solution on the recommendations of the Quartet on 1 July 2016
  9. advance the two-state solution on the recommendations of the United States Secretary of State’s principles on the two-state solution of 28 December 2016
  10. addressing the dire humanitarian and security situation in the Gaza Strip and called for swift steps to improve the situation
  11. for Israelis and Palestinians to comply with international law, including international humanitarian law and human rights law

Final Conference Declaration – a closer look

Re 1: a negotiated solution with two states, Israel and Palestine, living side by side in peace and security is the only way to achieve enduring peace

Israel wants to exist as a Jewish state and to live in peace.

The problem is that many Arab nations do not even recognize the right of the Jewish state of Israel to exist and the Palestinian’s recognition of Israel is so tenuous, that Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas is threatening to reverse their recognition of Israel US President-elect Donald Trump moves America’s Embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem.


Re 2: reiterated that a negotiated two-state solution should meet the legitimate aspirations of both sides

The problem is, the ‘legitimate aspirations’ of the Palestinians is not to live in peace with the Jews – but to live in peace without Jews.

Arabs of this region have demonstrated that they have never wanted to live in peace with the Jews. When  Trans Jordan (renamed Jordan) was created from 3/4 of the land under the British Mandate for Palestine, it was excluded from Jewish settlement. When the State of Israel was created from the remaining 1/4 of the land, the very next day the armies of all of the neighboring Arab states of Lebanon, Syria, Iraq, Trans-Jordan and Egypt attacked the newly-created State of Israel, in an attempt to destroy it.

Since Israel withdrew from the Gaza Strip in 2005 in exchange for peace with the Palestinians, more than 11,000 rockets have been fired into Israel from Gaza and the “knife-intifada” and vehicle-rammings continue are regular occurrences in Israel.

In this case, the aspirations of one side is the eradication of the other.


Re 3: a negotiated two-state solution should including the Palestinians’ right to statehood and sovereignty

The issue here is that the Palestinian’s “state” is to have as its capital the capital of Israel, Jerusalem.

The “land” of this Palestinian “state” is to include all of Judea and Samaria, on the “west bank” of the Jordan River – the heartland of the Jewish people for millennia.

The concept of a two-state solution is often proposed as a means to resolve the ongoing tensions between Israel and the ‘Palestinians’, however few people are aware that there have already been two “two-state solutions“.

The first two-state solution was when the Arab-Palestinian state of Transjordan (later renamed Jordan) allocated 75% of the land that was to be part of the reconstituted homeland for the Jewish people to the Arabs, and excluded it from Jewish settlement – leaving only 25% for a Jewish homeland.  Jordan is Arab Palestine.

The second two-state solution was created under UN Resolution 181 in November 1947 – where the remaining 25% of the land of the former British Mandate for Palestine was partitioned into two states (again) — with 43% of the land remaining for the Jewish homeland being given to this second Arab state under the Partition Plan – which Israel accepted in exchange for peace with the Arabs, but the Arabs rejected.

Jordan is Arab-Palestine, created from 3/4 of the land under the British Mandate for Palestine.


Re 4: a negotiated two-state solution should fully end the occupation that began in 1967

There is no “Israeli occupation”.

During the Six-Day War in 1967, Israel re-took control of its own land (East Jerusalem, Judea and Samaria on the “west bank” of the Jordan River) that Jordan had taken by force in 1948 after the creation of the state of Israel, later illegally annexing it in 1950.

Since 1967, the international community has referred to this land as “disputed territory” and Israelis as ‘occupiers’ and ‘settlers’ of their own land.

The only “occupation” that took place was from 1948 until 1967 when Jordan occupied Judea and Samaria and East Jerusalem.


Re 5: resolve all permanent status issues on the basis of United Nations Security Council resolutions 242 (1967) and 338 (1973) and also recalled relevant Security Council resolutions

This refers to the so-called “pre-1967 borders, however there is no such thing as “pre-1967 borders” — at least not in the way they think

The “Green Line” running through Judea and Samaria (on the west bank of the Jordan River) is the 1949 Armistice Line and the 1949 Armistice Agreement between Israel and Jordan states that the Armistice Line “did not compromise any future territorial claims of the two parties” since it had been “dictated by exclusively by military considerations”.  The Armistice Line was never intended to be a border.

Furthermore, UN Security Council’s Resolution 242, which was passed 5 months after the Six-Day War stated that the 1949 Armistice line was not supposed to designate final Israeli borders. 

UN Security Council’s Resolution 338, passed after the Yom Kippur war stated immediately after the ceasefire, the implementation of Security Council resolution 242 (1967) in all of its parts. This resolution stated that the 1949 Armistice line was not supposed to designate final Israeli borders. 

This part of the Final Declaration does not affirm what they think it does as both resolution state that the 1949 Armistice line does not designate final Israeli borders, so “pre-1967 borders” would be the ones that existed at the establishment of the State of Israel in 1948.


Re 6: the importance of the Arab Peace Initiative of 2002 as a comprehensive framework for the resolution of the Arab-Israeli conflict

The Arab Peace Initiative of 2002 stated that if Israel recognized a Palestinian state with East Jerusalem as its capital and based on so-called 1967 lines (giving the “West Bank” to this state), territorial adjustments for the Golan Heights then all the Arab nations would sign peace accords with Israel and establish full diplomatic relations.

“If the Arab nations grasp the fact that they need to revise the Arab League proposal according to the changes Israel demands, then we can talk. But if they bring the proposal from 2002 and define it as ‘take it or leave it’ – we’ll choose to leave it.”

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, June 13, 2016


Re 7: adoption of United Nations Security Council resolution 2334 on 23 December 2016

UN Security Council’s Resolution #2334  of December 23, 2016 declared that the Western Wall of the Jewish Temple (the Kotel) and all of Jerusalem the capital of Israel, the oldest Jewish cemetery in the world on the Mount of Olives, as well as all of Judea and Samaria (the “West Bank”) is “illegally occupied Palestinian territory”. 

Re: Jerusalem being “occupied territory”:

The only time Jerusalem was “occupied territory” was from the end of the War of Independence in 1948 until 1967, when Jordan occupied it – after having seized it by force.

Jordan’s decision to join the Arab allegiance with Egypt and Syria to destroy Israel, despite a request from Israel that they do not, ended by Israel taking control of its own land that Jordan had occupied in 1948 and illegally annexed in 1950— specifically East Jerusalem and the land on the “west bank” of the Jordan River, Judea and Samaria — freeing it from illegal occupation by Jordan.

Re: The Temple Mount belonging to the Jews and the Jewish state of Israel:

Under the Temple Mount are the remains of two Jewish Temples;

Solomon’s Temple stood on the Temple Mount from 827 BCE until it was destroyed by the Babylonians 470 years later.

The Second Temple stood on the Temple Mount from 349 BCE until it was destroyed in 70 CE by the Romans. The Western Wall (the Kotel) is the remains of the wall of the Second Temple.

Throughout history, different people including the Arabs, Persians and Christians captured Jerusalem – just as Jordan did in 1967, but Jerusalem from its foundation is Jewish, as is the Temple Mount.

Jerusalem has been the capital of the Jewish people since ~1000 BCE.

More information on the ancient and modern history of Jerusalem:   http://www.morehasbara.com/2016/12/27/jerusalem-modern-and-historic-capital-of-the-jewish-people/

 


Re 8: advance the two-state solution on the recommendations of the Quartet on 1 July 2016

The so-called “Quartet countries”; United States, Russia, the European Union and the United Nations stated called for Israel turn over all areas of “Area C” in Judea and Samaria (the “West Bank), including the majority of agricultural lands, natural resources and land reserves.

To understand the issues with regards to Jewish inhabitants in outpost towns in Judea and Samaria requires some knowledge of the modern history of region.  This article provides that brief history: http://www.morehasbara.com/2016/12/13/judea-samaria-west-bank-jordan/


Re 9: advance the two-state solution on the recommendations of the United States Secretary of State’s principles on the two-state solution of 28 December 2016

So much can be said about the infamous speech by US Secretary of State John Kerry on December 28 2016, including his famous line

“Israel can either be Jewish or democratic – it cannot be both”

Most of what Kerry called for in his speech was embodied in the draft summary for this conference, elaborate on in the previous post.


Re 10: addressing the dire humanitarian and security situation in the Gaza Strip and called for swift steps to improve the situation

The situation in Gaza is a result of a 10-year conflict between Hama, a terrorist organization and offshoot of the Muslim Brotherhood which seized power from Fatah in a coup in June 2007, and the Palestinian Authority (PA) which represents Fatah.

The PA pays for power supplied by Israel and Egypt and normally transfers it to Gaza, exempting it from most taxes but due to its own financial constraints, the PA is no longer offsetting all the tax, angering Hamas.

Residents in Gaza are currently receiving just 3-4 hours of electricity per day – shortages which are resulting from this ongoing feud between Hamas and the PA.


Re 11: for Israelis and Palestinians to comply with international law, including international humanitarian law and human rights law

Israel has been accused by the UN of not adhering to the Fourth Geneva Convention of 1949 — a statute which outlines the obligations of an “occupying power” in times of war.

The Fourth Geneva Convention cannot be applied to Israel as it cannot be an “occupying power” in its own land — land it reclaimed from illegal annexation by Jordan.

The only “occupying power” in East Jerusalem and in Judea and Samaria was Jordan, from the years 1948 – 1967.

Final thoughts…

While no new UN declaration will follow this conference, the reiteration and emphasis of the creation of a state of Palestine that has Jerusalem, the capital of Israel as its capital, remains.

The plan is to implement UN Security Council’s Resolution #2334  of December 23, 2016 which declared the Western Wall of the Jewish Temple (the Kotel) and all of Jerusalem, the oldest Jewish cemetery in the world on the Mount of Olives, as well as all of Judea and Samaria (the “West Bank”) as “illegally occupied Palestinian territory”. 

If all of Judea and Samaria is turned over to this ‘Palestinian state’, Israel’s

While we can breathe an immediate collective sigh of relief, that relief is temporary.

The problem remains.

Such a “two-state solution” would be a political “final solution” — forcing Israel to turn over of our capital Jerusalem, access to the holiest site in Judaism, all the agricultural lands, natural resources and land reserves of Judea and Samaria in exchange for a promise of peace that we still have not experienced when we turned over Gaza in 2005.

When the legitimate aspirations of the Palestinians for a state includes the destruction of Israel, the answer is “no”.

 


MIDDLE EAST PEACE CONFERENCE JOINT DECLARATION

I) Following the Ministerial meeting held in Paris on 3 June 2016, the Participants met in Paris on 15 January 2017 to reaffirm their support for a just, lasting and comprehensive resolution of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. They reaffirmed that a negotiated solution with two states, Israel and Palestine, living side by side in peace and security, is the only way to achieve enduring peace.

They emphasized the importance for the parties to restate their commitment to this solution, to take urgent steps in order to reverse the current negative trends on the ground, including continued acts of violence and ongoing settlement activity, and to start meaningful direct negotiations.

They reiterated that a negotiated two-state solution should meet the legitimate aspirations of both sides, including the Palestinians’ right to statehood and sovereignty, fully end the occupation that began in 1967, satisfy Israel’s security needs and resolve all permanent status issues on the basis of United Nations Security Council resolutions 242 (1967) and 338 (1973), and also recalled relevant Security Council resolutions.

They underscored the importance of the Arab Peace Initiative of 2002 as a comprehensive framework for the resolution of the Arab-Israeli conflict, thus contributing to regional peace and security.

They welcomed international efforts to advance Middle East peace, including the adoption of United Nations Security Council resolution 2334 on 23 December 2016 which clearly condemned settlement activity, incitement and all acts of violence and terror, and called on both sides to take steps to advance the two-state solution on the ground ; the recommendations of the Quartet on 1 July 2016; and the United States Secretary of State’s principles on the two-state solution on 28 December 2016.

They noted the importance of addressing the dire humanitarian and security situation in the Gaza Strip and called for swift steps to improve the situation.

They emphasized the importance for Israelis and Palestinians to comply with international law, including international humanitarian law and human rights law.

II) The Participants highlighted the potential for security, stability and prosperity for both parties that could result from a peace agreement. They expressed their readiness to exert necessary efforts toward the achievement of the two-state solution and to contribute substantially to arrangements for ensuring the sustainability of a negotiated peace agreement, in particular in the areas of political and economic incentives, the consolidation of Palestinian state capacities, and civil society dialogue.

Those could include, inter alia:

– a European special privileged partnership; other political and economic incentives and increased private sector involvement; support to further efforts by the parties to improve economic cooperation; continued financial support to the Palestinian authority in building the infrastructure for a viable Palestinian economy;

– supporting and strengthening Palestinian steps to exercise their responsibilities of statehood through consolidating their institutions and institutional capacities, including for service delivery;

– convening Israeli and Palestinian civil society fora, in order to enhance dialogue between the parties, rekindle the public debate and strengthen the role of civil society on both sides.

III) Looking ahead, the Participants:

– call upon both sides to officially restate their commitment to the two-state solution, thus disassociating themselves from voices that reject this solution;

– call on each side to independently demonstrate, through policies and actions, a genuine commitment to the two-state solution and refrain from unilateral steps that prejudge the outcome of negotiations on final status issues, including, inter alia, on Jerusalem, borders, security, refugees and which they will not recognize;

– welcome the prospect of closer cooperation between the Quartet and Arab League members and other relevant actors to further the objectives of this Declaration.

As follow-up to the Conference, interested Participants, expressing their readiness to review progress, resolved to meet again before the end of the year in order to support both sides in advancing the two-state solution through negotiations.

France will inform the parties about the international community’s collective support and concrete contribution to the two-State solution contained in this joint declaration.

Paris Peace Summit – responding to the draft summary

INTRODUCTION: This coming Sunday, January 15 2017 representatives from 70 Nations will gather in Paris, France for the ironically named Paris Peace Summit – with the sole purpose of implementing their vision for a “two-state solution”.  Neither Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu nor Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas will be present at the meeting. Haaretz news, a left-wing news outlet obtained and published (Barak Ravid Jan 09, 2017 7:40 PM) a draft summary statement for this conference and the full text appears below this article.

[Special acknowledgement to israellycool.com for highlighting Haaretz’s publication of the draft summary.]

Paris Peace Summit – highlights from the draft summary

Here are some key highlights from that summary;

1. a negotiated solution with two states, Israel and Palestine, living side by side in peace and security

2. a negotiated two-state outcome should end the occupation that began in 1967

3. call on Israeli and Palestinian leaders to publicly renew their commitment to the two state solution

4. call on Israeli and Palestinian leaders to disavow official voices on their side that reject the two state solution

5. the 70 nations gathered in Paris will not recognize any future changes to the 4 June 1967 lines other than those agreed by the parties through negotiations

6. welcome the adoption of United Nations Security Council resolution 2334 of the 23 December 2016, which condemned ‘settlement activity’, and which declared that all of Jerusalem is ‘occupied territory’ (i.e. the Western Wall (Kotel), the Temple Mount do not belong to Israel)

7. welcome the adoption of United Nations Security Council resolution 2334 of the 23 December 2016, which declared that the “West Bank” (Judea and Samaria) is ‘occupied territory’

8. for both sides to comply with international humanitarian law and international human rights law

Text and Terms – a closer examination

Let’s look at each of the above terms individually; 

RE: 1. “a negotiated solution with two states, Israel and Palestine, living side by side in peace and security”

Israel wants to exist as a Jewish state and to live in peace. The problem, however, is that Palestinians and many other Muslim and Arab nations do not recognize the right of the Jewish state of Israel to exist.

To have two states, Israel and Palestine, living side by side in peace and security” will require;

(a) the Palestinians, Arab and Muslim nations to formally recognize the right of the Jewish state of Israel to exist, which they have refused to do up until this point.

(b) the Palestinians and Arab states to renounced the three “No’s” of the Kartoum conference of 1967 — no recognition, no peace and no negotiations.


Re: 2. a negotiated two-state outcome should end the occupation that began in 1967

There is no “Israeli occupation”.

During the Six-Day War in 1967, Israel re-took control of its own land (East Jerusalem, Judea and Samaria on the “west bank” of the Jordan River) that Jordan had taken by force in 1948 after the creation of the state of Israel, later illegally annexing it in 1950.

Since 1967, the international community has referred to this land as “disputed territory” and Israelis as ‘occupiers’ and ‘settlers’ of their own land.

The only “occupation” that took place was from 1948 until 1967 when Jordan occupied Judea and Samaria and East Jerusalem.


Re: 3. call on Israeli and Palestinian leaders to publicly renew their commitment to the two state solution

‘Palestinian’ leaders can’t “renew” their commitment to a two state solution as they and many other Muslim and Arab nations do not even recognize the right of the Jewish state of Israel to exist.

The concept of a two-state solution is often proposed as a means to resolve the ongoing tensions between Israel and the ‘Palestinians’, however few people are aware that there have already been two “two-state solutions“.

The first two-state solution was when the Arab-Palestinian state of Transjordan (later renamed Jordan) allocated 75% of the land that was to be part of the reconstituted homeland for the Jewish people to the Arabs, and excluded it from Jewish settlement – leaving only 25% for a Jewish homeland.  Jordan is Arab Palestine.

The second two-state solution was created under UN Resolution 181 in November 1947 – where the remaining 25% of the land of the former British Mandate for Palestine was partitioned into two states (again) — with 43% of the land set aside by the British for the Jewish homeland being given to this second Arab state under the Partition Plan – which Israel accepted in exchange for peace with the Arabs, but the Arabs rejected.


Re: 4. call on Israeli and Palestinian leaders to disavow official voices on their side that reject the two state solution

If ‘Palestinian’ leaders renounce their officials that do not support a two-state solution, they would have no leadership.

The Arabs that live in this area have never wanted to live in peace with the Jews – but rather to live in peace without Jews.

When Trans Jordan (renamed Jordan) was created from 3/4 of the land under the British Mandate for Palestine, it was excluded from Jewish settlement.

When the State of Israel was created from the remaining 1/4 of the land, the very next day the armies of all of the neighboring Arab states of Lebanon, Syria, Iraq, Trans-Jordan (now Jordan) and Egypt attacked the newly-created State of Israel, in an attempt to destroy it.


Re: 5. the 70 nations gathered in Paris will not recognize any future changes to the 4 June 1967 lines other than those agreed by the parties through negotiations

Just to be clear, there is no such thing as “pre-1967 borders”. The Green Line running through the “West Bank” is the 1949 Armistice Line, and this line was never intended to be a border;

(a) According to the 1949 Armistice Agreement between Israel and Jordan, the Armistice Line “did not compromise any future territorial claims of the two parties” since it had been “dictated by exclusively by military considerations.

(b) UN Security Council’s Resolution 242 which was passed 5 months after the Six-Day War recognizes that the 1949 Armistice line was not supposed to designate final Israeli borders.

Both the UN Security Council’s Resolution 2334 of December 23, 2016 (which called for Israel to stop building communities outside the 1949 Armistice Lines) and the text of the upcoming Paris Conference, contradict UN Security Council Resolution 242 as well as the Israel-Jordan Armistice Agreement. 


Re: 6. welcome the adoption of United Nations Security Council resolution 2334 of the 23 December 2016, which condemned ‘settlement activity’, and which declared that all of Jerusalem is ‘occupied territory’ (i.e. the Western Wall, the Temple Mount do not belong to Israel)

Re: Jerusalem being “occupied territory”:

The only time Jerusalem was “occupied territory” was from the end of the War of Independence in 1948 until 1967, when Jordan occupied it – after having seized it by force.

Jordan’s decision to join the Arab allegiance with Egypt and Syria to destroy Israel, despite a request from Israel that they do not, ended by Israel taking control of its own land that Jordan had occupied in 1948 and illegally annexed in 1950— specifically East Jerusalem and the land on the “west bank” of the Jordan River, Judea and Samaria — freeing it from illegal occupation by Jordan.

Re: The Temple Mount belonging to the Jews and the Jewish state of Israel:

Under the Temple Mount are the remains of two Jewish Temples;

Solomon’s Temple stood on the Temple Mount from 827 BCE until it was destroyed by the Babylonians 470 years later.

The Second Temple stood on the Temple Mount from 349 BCE until it was destroyed in 70 CE by the Romans. The Western Wall (the Kotel) is the remains of the wall of the Second Temple.

Throughout history, different people including the Arabs, Persians and Christians captured Jerusalem – just as Jordan did in 1967, but Jerusalem from its foundation is Jewish, as is the Temple Mount.

Jerusalem has been the capital of the Jewish people since ~1000 BCE.

Archaeologists at the summit of the City of David have unearthed what is believed to be the palace of King David (who ruled from ~1005 to 965 BCE).

More information on the ancient and modern history of Jerusalem:  

http://www.morehasbara.com/2016/12/27/jerusalem-modern-and-historic-capital-of-the-jewish-people/

Re: 7. welcome the adoption of United Nations Security Council resolution 2334 of the 23 December 2016, which declared that the “West Bank” (Judea and Samaria) is ‘occupied territory’

The very term “Jew” is derived from the region from which they originated, Judea – on the “west bank” of the Jordan River.

Hebron, on the “west bank” of the Jordan River is where the Jewish Patriarchs Abraham, Isaac and Jacob are buried and where the Jewish Matriarchs, the wives of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob – Sarah, Rebecca and Leah are buried. Hebron is where David was first crowned King of Israel.

Christians should be outraged the UN seeks to declare Bethlehem, the birthplace of the one they call “King of the Jews” as not being from the land of the Jews.


Re: 8. for both sides to comply with international humanitarian law and international human rights law

Israel has been accused by the UN of not adhering to the Fourth Geneva Convention of 1949 — a statute which outlines the obligations of an “occupying power” in times of war.

The Fourth Geneva Convention cannot be applied to Israel as it cannot be an “occupying power” in its own land — land it reclaimed from illegal annexation by Jordan.

The only “occupying power” in East Jerusalem and in Judea and Samaria was Jordan, from the years 1948 – 1967.

Final thoughts…

UN Security Council Resolution 2334 of December 23, 2016 declared, among other things that the Kotel, the Western Wall of the Jewish Temple and all of Jerusalem, the capital of Israel are “illegally occupied Palestinian territory”.  This did not make it so. Neither will the Paris Conference.

If the 70 Nations gathering on January 15 2017 in Paris were to declare that the Great Wall of China wasn’t Chinese, would that make it so? Neither will their declarations concerning Jerusalem, the Temple Mount or Judea and Samaria.


Draft Summary Statement –  Paris Peace Summit 

[credit: Haaretz news | Barak Ravid | Jan 09, 2017 7:40 PM]

I) Following the Ministerial meeting held in Paris on 3 June 2016, the Participants met in Paris on 15 January 2017 to reaffirm their support for a just, lasting and comprehensive resolution of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. They reaffirmed that a negotiated solution with two states, Israel and Palestine, living side by side in peace and security, is the only way to achieve enduring peace.

They emphasized the importance for the parties to restate their commitment to this solution, to take urgent steps in order to reverse the current negative trends on the ground and to start meaningful direct negotiations.

They reiterated that a negotiated two-state outcome should [meet Israeli security needs and the rights of Palestinians to statehood and sovereignty, end the occupation that began in 1967], and resolve all permanent status issues on the basis of United Nations Security Council resolutions 242 (1967), 338 (1973), 1397 (2002), 1515 (2003), 1850 (2008), the Madrid principles (1991) and the Quartet Roadmap (2003). They also underscored the Arab Peace Initiative as a vision for a comprehensive resolution of the Arab-Israeli conflict, thus contributing to regional peace and security. They welcomed the adoption of United Nations Security Council resolution 2334 on 23 December 2016, which clearly condemned settlement activity, incitement and violence, and called both sides to take steps to advance the two-state solution on the ground.

They took note of the report of the Quartet of 1 July 2016 and its recommendations for both sides to take concrete steps to preserve the two-state solution and to create the conditions for final status negotiations.

They noted with particular interest United States Secretary of State’s remarks on 28 December 2016, in which he stressed that no solution could be imposed and outlined his vision of principles for a final status agreement.

They further emphasized the importance for both sides of complying with international humanitarian law and international human rights law, including accountability.

II) The Participants highlighted the potential for security, stability and prosperity for both parties that could result from a peace agreement. They expressed their readiness to exert necessary efforts toward the achievement of the two-state solution and to contribute substantially to arrangements for ensuring the sustainability of a negotiated peace agreement, in particular in the areas of economic incentives, the consolidation of Palestinian state capacities, and civil society dialogue. Those could include, inter alia:

  • a European special privileged partnership; other economic incentives and increased private sector involvement; support to further efforts by the parties to streamline economic cooperation;
  • concrete support to the implementation of the Palestinian Statehood Strategy, including further meetings between international partners and the Palestinian side to that effect;
  • convening Israeli and Palestinian civil society fora, and rekindling the public debate.

They called for these different strands of work to be pursued diligently.

III) Looking ahead, the Participants:

  • expect both sides to restate their commitment to the two-state solution, and to disavow official voices on their side that reject this solution;
  • call on each side to independently demonstrate, through policies and actions, a genuine commitment to the two-state solution and refrain from unilateral steps that prejudge the outcome of final status negotiations, in order to rebuild trust and create a path back to meaningful direct negotiations, in line with the recommendations of the Quartet report of 1 July 2016;
  • restate the validity of the Arab Peace Initiative and highlight its potential for stability in the region;
  • reaffirm that they will not recognize any changes to the 4 June 1967 lines, including with regard to Jerusalem, other than those agreed by the parties through negotiations; also reaffirm that they will distinguish, in their relevant dealings, between the territory of the State of Israel and the territories occupied since 1967;
  • welcome the prospect of closer cooperation between the Quartet and Arab League members to further the objectives of this Declaration and enhance, if necessary, existing mechanisms;
  • welcome the readiness of interested Participants to review progress and further the set of incentives; their findings could be conveyed to the United Nations for the reporting under 0P12 of UNSCR 2334.

France will inform the parties about the international community’s collective support and concrete contribution to the two-State solution contained in this joint declaration.

Jerusalem – modern and historic capital of the Jewish people

INTRODUCTION: UN Security Council’s Resolution 2334 (December 23, 2016) declared among other things that the Kotel, the Western Wall of the Jewish Temple and all of Jerusalem, the capital of Israel are “illegally occupied Palestinian territory”.  Many people don’t understand the issues concerning this Resolution because they do not have an overall knowledge of the history of Jerusalem itself. This article provides a succinct dated account of Jewish ties to Jerusalem, the date of when the Arabs first arrived (as well as subsequent Muslim conquests), as well as the Modern History of Israel from just after WWI.

A Brief History of Jerusalem

For the purposes of this article, the history of Jerusalem will be divided into its I – Historic / Biblical History and its II – Modern History (post WWI).

I – Jewish Historic ties to Jerusalem

Jerusalem has been the capital of the Jewish people since ~1000 BCE.

Archaeologists at the summit of the City of David have unearthed what is believed to be the palace of King David (who ruled from ~1005 to 965 BCE).

Davids Palace escavation inside
inside David’s Palace excavation site

Excavation have uncovered monumental structures, including a city gate, towers and a royal structure believed to be part of the city wall of Jerusalem, built during the 10th century BCE by King Solomon.

Inside Solomons Temple Gate - large clay jars for grain
Inside Solomons Temple Gate – large clay jars for grain
Eilat Mazar dig site outside Herods Temple
The Ophel excavations at the foot of the southern wall of the Temple Mount in Jerusalem

In March 2016, a 2500 year old Jewish seal was found in Jerusalem, dating from the first Jewish Temple Period, clearly establishing that there was an established Jewish presence at that time.

[see http://www.morehasbara.com/2016/05/21/king-solomons-wall-discovered-outside-2nd-temple-wall/].

The First Temple (also called Solomon’s Temple) stood on the Temple Mount from 827 BCE until it was destroyed by the Babylonians 470 years later. The Second Temple stood on the Temple Mount from 349 BCE, until it was destroyed in 70 CE by the Romans.

Prior to the arrival of the Romans, the Jewish people were politically independent and were governed by self-rule for ~80 years under the Hasmonean Dynasty beginning in ~167 BCE — after the Maccabee brothers defeated the Seleucid king, Antiochus IV (Antiochus Ephipanes) ~165 BCE), after he had plundered the Jewish Temple of its gold objects of worship then and desecrated it by sacrificing a pig on its alter (what is celebrated as Hanukah).

The first time an Arab government ruled in Jerusalem was in the sixth century CE with the rise of Islam, ~700 years after the Hasmonean Dynasty.

The Romans conquered the Seleucids and in 37 BCE and appointed Herod King of Judea. Ten years after Herod’s death in 4 BCE, Judea came under direct Roman administration.

Roman suppression of Jewish life and increased taxation escalated into a full-scale revolt in 66 CE and culminating in the razing of Jerusalem and distruction of the Second Temple in 70 CE. In 73 CE, the last Jewish outpost at Masada was destroyed. The Romans merged Roman Syria and Roman Judaea and renamed the geographical area Syria Palaestina in 135 CE. They chose the name as an insult to the Jewish inhabitants they displaced* because the ancient adversary of the Jews, were the Philistines.

* the inhabitants they displaced were Jews, not Arabs.

The founding of the Byzantine Empire in ~325 CE followed Constantine’s adoption of Christianity as the national religion. The Byzantines renamed the geographical area Palestina Secunda or Palestina II and ruled the area until 629 CE. 

In 614 CE, after a brief siege the Persians, with the assistance of Jewish forces captured Jerusalem.

In 636-637 CE, the Arabs under Caliph Umar conquered Jerusalem, claiming it as part of the Arab Caliphate.  Umar was the second Caliph of the Rashidun Caliphate who succeeded Abu Bakr (632–634 CE). In 687–691 CE, Caliph Abd el Malik of Syria had the Dome of the Rock built on top of the ruins of the First and Second Jewish Temples — as a means of demonstrating Islam’s superiority over the Christians and Jews that they had driven from Jerusalem. The al-Aqsa mosque was built ~20 years after the Dome of the Rock.

NOTE: Jerusalem was the Jewish capital >1500 years before the Arabs arrived.

The Arab Muslims ruled the area until the First Crusades, when Jerusalem was captured by the Christians in 1099 CE.

In 1187 CE, Saladin, a Sunni Muslim of Kurdish descent and the founder of the Ayyubid Dynasty conquered Jerusalem from the First Crusader Kingdom. The Christians failed to recapture Jerusalem during the Second Crusader Kingdom (1192–1291 CE) and Third Crusader Kingdom (1192 CE).

As a result of a 1229 CE treaty between the Roman Catholic Emperor and the Ayyubid Sultan, Jerusalem was under Christian control until 1244 CE, when Muslims failed to recapture it and the city was destroyed. A failed attempt to recapture the Jerusalem during the Seventh Crusades 1248–50 CE fails and the Muslim Ayyubids retain rule then relocate to Damascus, where they continue to rule the area, including Jerusalem for 10 more years.

In 1260 CE, the Mongol Empire raids the Land, and turns over Jerusalem to the Christians, under Louis IX of France.

From 1516 – 1917, the Ottoman Empire rules the Land, including Jerusalem. The Ottomans were defeated during World War I (WWI) — a month after the Balfour Declaration was issued.


Where is “Palestine”?

The term “Palestine” is a geographical term used to designate the region at the above points in history, none of them belonging to Arabs;

(1) belonging to the Romans (Syria Palaestina, 135-390 CE),

(2) a province belonging to the Byzantine empire (called Palestina Secunda or Palestina II – 390 CE),

(3) a geopolitical entity under British administration, after the defeat of the Ottoman Empire after WWI.

When did the Arabs arrive in the Land?

The Arabs arrived in the Land during the Muslim conquest, when they besieged Gaza in 634 CE and defeated the Byzantines (636 CE). Two years later, in 638 CE, the Arabs conquered Jerusalem .

The Arabs first came to the Land > 1500 years after King David established his palace there in ~1000 BCE.

The Arabs first ruled Jerusalem 1465 CE years after the First Temple was built in Jerusalem on the Temple Mount in ~827 BCE.

Modern Jewish ties to Jerusalem

The Balfour Declaration in was issued by the British government in November 1917, where it announced its intention to facilitate the “establishment in Palestine of a national home for the Jewish people”.  The was the beginning of concrete plans for a modern state of Israel.

In 1920, the Mandate system was instituted by the League of Nations (forerunner of the United Nations) in order to administer non-self-governing territories. A nation granted mandatory powers by the League of Nations was to consider the mandated territory a temporary trust and to see to the well-being and advancement of its population.

In 1922, following the defeat of the Ottoman Empire in WWI, the British were granted mandatory powers by the League of Nations to administer the geographic region of Palestine. The area included all of the area of present-day Israel and Jordan.

The British Mandate for Palestine included provisions calling for the establishment of a Jewish homeland, facilitating Jewish immigration and encouraging Jewish settlement on the land all of which built on the foundation of the Balfour Declaration.

 

In 1923, under Article 25 of the British Mandate for PalestineBritish Mandate - Israel and TransJordan the first Arab-Palestinian state of Transjordan (later renamed Jordan) was created by the British, which allocated 78% of the land that had been set aside to be part of the reconstituted homeland for the Jewish people under the Balfour Declaration to an Arab state  and the British excluded it from Jewish settlement.

This left only 22% of the land for a Jewish state.

After the partition, Transjordan remained part of the British Mandate for Palestine, and Britain continued to be responsible for administering the land on both sides of the Jordan River.

The Arabs that remained living on the small piece of land earmarked for the Jewish state after the creation of the Arab-Palestinian state of Transjordan, attacked and killed Jews living there in an effort to drive them out and claim all of British Mandate of Palestine as Arab land. The Hebron Massacres of 1929 and the 1936-39 Arab Revolt are the most notable of these attacks.

In 1936, the British appointed the Peel Commission to find a solution to the violence, the outcome of which was a recommendation to partition the land under the British Mandate for Palestine, between Arabs and Jews.

In 1939, WWII began and shortly afterwards, the British issued a White Paper restricting Jewish immigration to British Mandated Palestine   just as thousands of Jews wanted to flee the escalating Nazi violence in Europe.  The British set a limit that a maximum of 75,000 immigration certificates would be authorized by the mandatory power to incoming Jews. The British hoped to appease the local Arab population by limiting the number of Jews coming into the region and with the US having also limited immigration of Jews, those being hunted by the Nazis had no place of escape.

Under the British Mandate for Palestine, the Jewish community that was already in the land, formed political, social and economic institutions that governed daily life and served as a infrastructure for the community. David Ben-Gurion served as its head.

In 1946, Britain unilaterally granted Transjordan independencecreating an independent Palestine-Arab state. This was the first “two-state solution“. In doing so, however, Britain failed to live up to its responsibility under the Mandate system to see the well-being and advancement of all of its population, Jews included. Shortly afterwards, the British government, unable to manage Arab tensions and ongoing violent attacks against the Jews in the land, handed control over to the United Nations.

After much debate and discussion, in November 1947, the United Nations General Assembly voted on Resolution 181, which allocated half of the land that the British had set aside for the Jewish homeland under the Balfour Declaration for creation of a second Arab state — with the remaining half (mostly of which was in the barren Negev desert) for a the Jewish state. This became known as the “Partition Plan“. The Jews accepted the Partition Plan that would have given the Arabs all of Gaza and all of Judea and Samaria  — in exchange for peace with a Jewish state, but the Arabs rejected it.

Foundation of the State of Israel

At 4:00 PM on May 14, 1948, just 8 hours before the British Mandate for Palestine officially terminated, David Ben-Gurion proclaimed the creation of the State of Israel and became its first prime minister. The very next day the armies of all of the neighboring Arab states of Lebanon, Syria, Iraq, Trans-Jordan (now Jordan) and Egypt attacked the newly-created State of Israel, in an attempt to destroy it. This became known as the “War of Independence“.

By March 1949, at the end of the 10-month long War of Independence, Gaza was occupied by Egypt, and Judea and Samaria and East Jerusalem were occupied by Jordan.

On April 24, 1950, Jordan annexed both East Jerusalem and Judea and Samaria — areas it had seized from Israel by military force in 1948. The annexation of East Jerusalem and Judea and Samaria was viewed as illegal by most of the international community, including all of the Arab states. 

The Six Day War

In May of 1967, Gamal Abdel Nasser, President of Egypt announced his plans “to destroy Israel”. Nasser placed Egypt’s troops on Israel’s border and after signing a treaty with Syria, placed the Syrian military under an Egyptian general. The armies of Egypt and Syria were mobilized to attack Israel. Israel preemptively attacked Egypt and Syria but did not attack Jordan — asking instead for King Hussein of Jordan not to join the war. Kind Hussein did not have a good relationship with Egypt’s President Nasser (Nasser’s intelligence service had tried to assassinate the King multiple times), but when the rest of the Arab world lined up behind Nasser’s promise to destroy Israel, King Hussein of Jordan joined the attack.

Jordan’s decision to join this Arab allegiance to destroy Israel, despite a request from Israel that they do not, ended by Israel taking control of its own land that Jordan had occupied in 1948 and illegally annexed in 1950— specifically East Jerusalem and the land on the “west bank” of the Jordan River; Judea and Samaria.

 “Pre-1967 Borders”

The UN Security Council’s Resolution 2334 of this past Friday (December 23, 2016) declares, among other things, that the Kotel (the Western Wall of the Jewish Temple) and all of Jerusalem are “illegally occupied Palestinian territory”  trying to enforce what “Palestinians” call “pre-1967 borders”.

A recent article in Arutz Sheva (Israel National News, Jeff Dunetz, 26/12/16 12:30) was a good reminder that;

there is no such thing as pre-1967 borders. That “green line” running through the West Bank is the 1949 Armistice Line.

At the end of the War of Independence, the Armistice Line (the so-called “green line”) was created where Israeli and Arab forces stopped fighting. It was not a border, but a cease-fire line. In fact, the 1949 Armistice Agreement with Jordan explicitly states that the Armistice Line did not compromise any future territorial claims of the two parties  since it had been

“dictated by exclusively by military considerations.”

Given that “pre-1967 borders” have been explicitly established in international law to not be the 1949 Armistice Line, the only “pre-1967 border” are the borders which existed on May 14, 1948, the day the modern state of Israel was created.

UN Security Council Resolution 242

Five months after the Six-Day War, the UN Security Council passed Resolution 242 which recognized that the 1949 Armistice Line was not to designate final Israeli borders.

During the negotiations to create UN Resolution 242, Arab governments tried three times to have the article “the” inserted in the resolution which would have changed the wording from;

“Israel should withdraw from territories taken during the war”

to

“Israel should withdraw from the territories taken during the war”

The addition of the article “the” would have changed Resolution 242 to mean that Israel should withdraw from all territories taken during the war — however their request for addition of a “the” in UN Resolution 242 was rejected.

Final thoughts…

During the Six-Day War in 1967, Israel re-took control of its own land (i.e. East Jerusalem, Judea and Samaria on the “west bank” of the Jordan River) that Jordan had taken by force in 1948 after the creation of the state of Israel, later  illegally annexing it in 1950. Since 1967, the international community has referred to this land as “disputed territory” and Israelis as ‘occupiers’ and ‘settlers’ of their own land — yet at no point from 1948 until 1967 did the international community ever view Jordan as “occupiers” of Judea and Samaria and East Jerusalem. The double standard is striking.

Israel is accused by the international community of not adhering to the Fourth Geneva Convention of 1949 — a statute which outlines the obligations of an “occupying power” in times of war.  The Fourth Geneva Convention cannot be applied to Israel as it cannot be an occupying powerin its own land — land it reclaimed from illegal annexation by Jordan. The only “occupying power” in East Jerusalem and in Judea and Samaria was Jordan, from the years 1948 – 1967.

While the UN Security Council’s Resolution 2334 of last Friday (December 23, 2016) effectively calls for Israel to stop building communities outside the 1949 Armistice Lines — those lines were never intended to “compromise any territorial claims” (1949 Armistice Agreement).

Furthermore, the UN Security Council’s Resolution 2334 of December 23, 2016 contradicts its own declaration (UN Security Council Resolution 242) which was passed 5 months after the Six-Day War and which recognizes that the 1949 Armistice line was not supposed to designate final Israeli borders.

“Palestinians” and the UN assert that Israel should return to “pre-1967 borders” Given that the 1949 Armistice Lines were specifically excluded from forming Israel’s borders, the only “pre-1967 borders” are those that existed in 1948, when the State of Israel was created.

Security Forces Ready to Evict Amona Residents – pending vote on new proposal

According to an Israel National News (Arutz Sheva) report by Eliran Aharon, made on Sunday morning (December 18 2016, 06:43, Israel time), the residents of Amona have been offered a “new proposal”, following an overnight meeting between Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu (Likud) and Naftali Bennett (Jewish Home), who met with a representative for the residents of Amona, Yossi Dagan (head of Samaria Regional Council).

This “new offer” looks very much like the “old offer”  except 24 families, instead of 12 families will be crammed into trailers (what Israelis call “caravans”) on a piece of land with an area of six dunams (6,000 sq. meters / 7176 sq. yards). This small piece of land, called “Lot 38” is circled in red, on the map below.

For information on the previous proposal and why Amona residents rejected it, please see: http://www.morehasbara.com/2016/12/15/ultimatum-in-amona-update-dec-15-2016/

To understand how the Struggle for Amona is a struggle for National Sovereignty, please see: http://www.morehasbara.com/2016/12/13/struggle-amona-struggle-national-sovereignty/

In addition, the state will ask the Supreme Court to postpone the eviction by 30 days to allow for the above preparation.

ultimatum-map2-amona

The remaining 18 families will be relocated one kilometer to the west, to the town of Ofra to wait for the Israeli government to build portable buildings on lots adjacent to Amona (in the area circled in blue), at which time the residents will be provided with permits to live on that land for only two years.  During those two years, the Israeli government intends to petition the courts to remove the absentee Arab owners’ names from the plots of land.

It was on the basis of only 4 plots of land (out of the ~ 30 plots on which Amona is built) that the High Court of Israel’s ruled that the entire community of Amona must be relocated or destroyed — even though the Arabs that hold “deeds” to these plots have not been present and have not paid taxes on it for decades.

Furthermore, the land in question was gifted to local area Arabs by the King of Jordan during a period in history in which Jordan illegally occupied and annexed Judea and Samaria from Israel (1948-1967) [see previous posts].

The residents of Amona originally had to decide whether they will accept the “new offer” by 8:00 AM Sunday morning which has been pushed 12:00 PM, in order to allow time for the Israeli government to request the Israeli Supreme Court delay the demolition (Israel National News, Arutz Sheva, Eliran Aharon, Amona, 18/12/16 10:41)

This “new” proposal, like the previous one rejected by the Amona residents was made without any guarantees on the part of the Israeli government. If the residents of Amona reject it, they will face immediate eviction.

15622339_10154264219483403_4851526594833845071_nSaturday night Israel time, it was reported on the Amona English feed on Twitter that security forces were preparing for the eviction of Amona residents and were closing nearby roads.

 

 

The following was reported to have been written by Naftali Bennett, following the meeting on Sunday morning and was posted on Facebook shortly afterward (account of Joshua Wander, Public Relations and Security Officer at the International Committee for the Preservation of Har Hazeitim (ICPHH):

בשורות טובות.
כרגע סיימנו מרתון מומ עם רהמ ונציגי עמונה.
המטרה היתה להפוך כל אבן על מנת למנוע פינוי בכפייה של רכס עמונה.

הגענו למתווה מסוכם, שעכשיו יובא להצבעה אצל התושבים.
עיקרי השינוי מקודם:
1. הכפלת מספר המשפחות ל24 על חלקה 38. במקום 12
2. יותר מרכיבי מחויבות של המדינה למימוש ההסכם (מינוי פרויקטור מיוחד, לוזים, התחייבות ראש ממשלה ועוד)

כעת, המתווה יובא בשעה 8:00 להצבעה באסיפת תושבים.
אם יאשרו, נעלה מיד קראוונים לחלקה 38 ונבקש דחייה של 30 יום.
כמו בפעם שעברה אשמח שתפעילו השפעתכם על מנת לשכנעם להצביע בעד.

זהו, הולך לישון עכשיו☺ נפתלי בנט

[translation by Google Translate]

“Good morning, friends.
Good news.
Just finished a marathon meeting with Amona representatives.
Target was to prevent the forced evacuation of Amona ridge.

Reached a proposal, now will be voted on by the residents:
1. Multiplied several families to 24 on plot 38. Instead of 12
2. More elements of the state towards commitment agreement

8:00 vote for gathering residents.
If you approve, immediately trailers for lot 38, and will ask for a 30-day delay in eviction.
I’d love to persuade them to vote “for”.
That’s it, going to sleep now ☺. Naftali Bennett”

Israel National News (Arutz Sheva) reported (Uzi Baruch, 15/12/16 00:40) that residents rejected the previous offer because:

“the proposed arrangement does not provide any guarantee or commitment that we will indeed receive an alternative home… In light of this and in view of the uncertainty in the proposal, the residents of Amona decided tonight…to reject the proposed layout.”

Given that the state has offered no guarantees and the same uncertainly that resulted in the residents of Amona rejecting the previous proposal remains, why would one expect the vote on Sunday morning to be any different?

The only thing that has changed is that with this “new proposal” is that 24 families would be living in trailers on Lot 38, instead of 12.

Who could blame the residents of Amona for rejecting a “new” offer that addresses none of their reasons for rejecting the previous one?

amona-miriam-alster-flash-90
Amona (photo credits: Miriamm Alster / Flash 90) – Israel National News

 

 

 

Ultimatum in Amona – rejected by residents

featured photo from Israel National News (Arutz Sheva) - by Tomer Neuberg/flash 90

The 42 families of Amona faced an excruciating decision  yesterday (Israel time); to accept the “offer” agreed upon by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu (Likud), Naftali Bennett and Ayelet Shaked (Jewish Home) and Attorney General Avichai Mandelblit or face evacuation and the destruction of their homes and livelihoods within 2 weeks. According to Israel National News (Arutz Sheva), they’ve made their decision.

They rejected the “offer”.

This is the what the government coalition proposed:

(1) to begin work on setting up trailers (what Israelis call “caravans”) for 12 of the 42 families on Lot 38 (seen circled in red, map below), which has an area of six dunams (6,000 sq. meters / 7176 sq. yards).

and

(2) for the residents to accept to have the other 30 families relocate one kilometer to the west, to the town of Ofra to wait for the Israeli government to build four portable buildings in the lots adjacent to Amona (see circled in blue), giving them permits to live there for only two years.  During this period, the government said it was their intention to petition the courts to remove owners’ names from the property in question under Amona, as they have not been present and have not paid taxes on the land for decades.

The residents of Amona were to accept the offer — with no guarantees.

ultimatum-map2-amona
screen capture of relocation map (photo by Ari Fuld)

For the last 19 years, the Arabs who held deed to the this land have been absent —expressing no interest in the land, while these Jewish families have tilled it and caused it to become productive.  According to Israeli National News (Arutz Sheva), the court case objecting to the presence of the Jewish residents of Amona was launched by a left wing organization, and not by the Arabs who hold deed to the land. In fact, only one of the absentee landlords was located and none of the “deed-holders” were named in the case.  The case was a political move to further the purposes of the political organization whose end-result was that the High Court of Israel ruled that because there is a “deed” for only four of the plots of land under which the entire community is built, the entire community must either be relocated or destroyed.

Israel National News (Arutz Sheva) reported (Uzi Baruch, 15/12/16 00:40) that residents explained in a statement on Wednesday night, why they chose to reject the offer;

“We were willing to accept the destruction of our private homes, and a move from place to place, if only a Jewish community would remain on the hill. But the proposed arrangement does not provide any guarantee or commitment that we will indeed receive an alternative home. In light of this and in view of the uncertainty in the proposal, the residents of Amona decided tonight, after ten hours of debate, to reject the proposed layout.”

The residents of Amona will be evacuated — their homes and businesses demolished and their lives left in shambles — for what?

Residents of Amona — not squatters

The residents of Amona are not “squatters” living in tents — they live in furnished homes equipped with all the amenities; running water, heat, electricity, fridges, stoves, etc.

Below are some screenshots of one home in Amona, taken from a video shot by Ari Fuld, earlier today:

inside-of-house-in-amona
Inside of a home in Amona

Here are a few more screen captures of a home located on one of the wineries of Amona:

more-insides-of-homes-in-amona
home of a winery of Amona – photo by Ari Fuld

Amona has a school, playgroundroads, vineyards and as posted in the previous article about Amona, sheep and lamb barns (see Brian John Thomas’ video, below.)

Here are some photos of Amona, from the Wine4Amona website hosted by דפיכתוֹם, courtesy of Avi Abelow:

slide1

slide2

slide3

Amona is a productive community that is known for producing award-winning wine

award-winning-wine
2009 & 2011 awards for Amona wine (photos by Ari Fuld)

Amona also raises sheep and lamb

Sheep and lamb farm in Amona (photo by Brian John Thomas)
Sheep and lamb farm in Amona (photo by Brian John Thomas)

The residents of Amona are ordinary people, with ordinary lives who work and raise their families on the land given to the tribe of Benjamin — land which that was set aside for the Jewish homeland since 1917* and which has been part of Israel since its modern foundation on May 14, 1948.

*see Struggle for Amona - Struggle for National Sovereignty for a brief history http://www.morehasbara.com/2016/12/13/struggle-amona-struggle-national-sovereignty/] 

and 

Judea and Samaria - the West Bank of the Jordan http://www.morehasbara.com/2016/12/13/judea-samaria-west-bank-jordan/ for a brief history.

The land on which Amona is built was gifted by King Hussein of Jordan to a close associate during the period in which Jordan illegally occupied Judea and Samaria (1948-1967)

This land was not the King of Jordan’s to give.

It was seized by military force when Egypt, Syria and Jordan invaded the newly-created state of Israel, just one day after it was created.

[see Struggle for Amona – Struggle for National Sovereignty, link above].

The Jordanian king having given a parcel of land to colleagues during a time that Jordan illegally occupied and annexed the land from Israel does not make that land the possession of 
(1) those families 
(2) their descendants nor 
(3) anyone that may have subsequently purchased it from them.

This land has always been Israel.

To “give’ the residents of Amona such a “choice” for nothing more than the political gain of an organization is obscene. 

A court’s role is to uphold the law as it is written, which is the High Court of Israel’s justification for having ruled in a case brought by others on behalf of an unnamed, absentee “deed holder”, who never took the case to court and was not present for the proceedings.

Such a case should not have been heard until the courts ruled on the issue as to whether a deed issued for land illegally seized from Israel is legally binding.

Until that is resolved, the residents of Amona must be allowed to stay.

 


For those wishing to help the people of Amona and get some of their award-winning wine at the same time, here is a link: http://www.dkatom.co.il/wine4amona


Here is a link to the video from Ari Fuld from which some of the above photos and information was taken:

Here is the link a video of Brian John Thomas’ visit to Amona, just prior to the residents’s decision.

Judea and Samaria — the West Bank of the Jordan

INTRODUCTION: To understand the present issues with regards to Jewish inhabitants in outpost towns in Judea and Samaria*, in the so-called “disputed territories”, requires some knowledge of the modern history of region.  This article provides that brief history.

*Judea and Samaria is know as "the West Bank" as it is on the west bank of the Jordan River.

The ancient and biblical history of Jews in the land is beyond the scope of this article — suffice to say that the very term “Jew” is derived from the region from which they originated, Judea.

In terms of timeline, this article begins towards the end of World War I (WWI) with British involvement in the geographic area known as Palestine.

[For information regarding where the term "Palestine" came from, please see Where is Ancient Palestine and Who are the Palestinians: http://www.morehasbara.com/2015/10/11/where-is-ancient-palestine-who-are-the-palestinians/]

Balfour Declaration and the Mandate System

Towards the end of WWI, in November 1917, the British government issued the Balfour Declaration in which it announced its intention to facilitate the “establishment in Palestine of a national home for the Jewish people”.  The was the beginning of concrete plans for a modern state of Israel.

In 1920, the Mandate system was instituted by the League of Nations (forerunner of the United Nations) in order to administer non-self-governing territories. A nation granted mandatory powers by the League of Nations was to consider the mandated territory a temporary trust and to see to the well-being and advancement of its population.

In 1922, following the defeat of the Ottoman Empire in WWI, the British were granted mandatory powers by the League of Nations to administer the geographic region of Palestine.  The British Mandate for Palestine included provisions calling for the establishment of a Jewish homeland, facilitating Jewish immigration and encouraging Jewish settlement on the land all of which built on the foundation of the Balfour Declaration.

However just a few months later, the League of Nations and Britain arrived at the decision that the provisions for setting up a Jewish national home would not apply to the area east of the Jordan River.

In 1923, under Article 25 of the British Mandate for PalestineBritish Mandate - Israel and TransJordan the first Arab-Palestinian state of Transjordan (later renamed Jordan) was created by the British, which allocated 78% of the land that had been set aside to be part of the reconstituted homeland for the Jewish people under the Balfour Declaration to an Arab state  and the British excluded it from Jewish settlement.

This left only 22% of the land for a Jewish state.

Judea and Samaria was included in this small piece of land destined for the Jewish State.

After the partition, Transjordan remained part of the British Mandate for Palestine, and Britain continued to be responsible for administering the land on both sides of the Jordan River.

The Arabs that remained living on the small piece of land earmarked for the Jewish state after the creation of the Arab-Palestinian state of Transjordan, attacked and killed Jews living there in an effort to drive them out and claim all of British Mandate of Palestine as Arab land. The Hebron Massacres of 1929 and the 1936-39 Arab Revolt are the most notable of these attacks.

In 1936, the British appointed the Peel Commission to find a solution to the violence, the outcome of which was a recommendation to partition the land under the British Mandate for Palestine, between Arabs and Jews.

In 1939, WWII began and shortly afterwards, the British issued a White Paper restricting Jewish immigration to British Mandated Palestine   just as thousands of Jews wanted to flee the escalating Nazi violence in Europe.  The British set a limit that a maximum of 75,000 immigration certificates would be authorized by the mandatory power to incoming Jews. The British hoped to appease the local Arab population by limiting the number of Jews coming into the region and with the US having also limited immigration of Jews, those being hunted by the Nazis had no place of escape.

The role of Haj Amin al-Husseini, the Grand Mufti of Jerusalem and his 1941 meeting with Adolph Hitler certainly factors into the “big picture” as does al-Husseini’s role in the Middle East after WWII and leading up to the Six Day War, including President Abdel Nasser of Egypt’s intent to “destroy Israel”.

For more information, please see;

The Mufti and the Fuhrer (http://www.morehasbara.com/2015/10/22/the-mufti-and-the-fuhrer-background-to-nazi-influence-in-the-middle-east/) 

and 

Nazi Influence in the Middle East (http://www.morehasbara.com/2015/10/24/nazi-influence-in-the-middle-east-haj-amin-al-husseini/) for more information]

Under the British Mandate for Palestine, the Jewish community that was already in the land, formed political, social and economic institutions that governed daily life and served as a infrastructure for the community. David Ben-Gurion served as its head.

In 1946, Britain unilaterally granted Transjordan independencecreating an independent Palestine-Arab state. This was the first “two-state solution“. In doing so, however, Britain failed to live up to its responsibility under the Mandate system to see the well-being and advancement of all of its population, Jews included.

Shortly afterwards, the British government, unable to manage Arab tensions and ongoing violent attacks against the Jews in the land, handed control over to the United Nations.

Partition-Plan-1947-235x300After much debate and discussion, in November 1947, the United Nations General Assembly voted on Resolution 181, which allocated half of the land that the British had set aside for the Jewish homeland under the Balfour Declaration for creation of a second Arab state — with the remaining half (mostly of which was in the barren Negev desert) for a the Jewish state.

This became known as the “Partition Plan“.

The Jews accepted the Partition Plan that would have given the Arabs all of Gaza and all of Judea and Samaria  — in exchange for peace with a Jewish state, but the Arabs rejected it. As little as 1/4 of the original land allocated to a Jewish state was still considered too much

Birth of the State of Israel

At 4:00 PM on May 14, 1948, just 8 hours before the British Mandate for Palestine officially terminated, David Ben-Gurion proclaimed the creation of the State of Israel and became its first prime minister.

The very next day the armies of all of the neighboring Arab states of Lebanon, Syria, Iraq, Trans-Jordan (now Jordan) and Egypt attacked the newly-created State of Israel, in an attempt to destroy it. This became known as the “War of Independence“.

By March 1949, at the end of the 10-month long War of Independence, Gaza was occupied by Egypt, and Judea and Samaria and East Jerusalem  were occupied by Jordan

On April 24, 1950, Jordan annexed both East Jerusalem and Judea and Samaria — areas it had seized from Israel by military force in 1948. The annexation of East Jerusalem and Judea and Samaria was viewed as illegal by most of the international community, including all of the Arab states.

In May of 1967, Gamal Abdel Nasser, President of Egypt announced his plans “to destroy Israel”. Given his documented, past affiliation with the Nazis during WWII, this should come as no surprise [see Nazi Influence in the Middle East, link above].

Nasser placed Egypt’s troops on Israel’s border, and after signing a treaty with Syria, placed the Syrian military under an Egyptian general. The armies of Egypt and Syria were mobilized to attack Israel.

Israel preemptively attacked Egypt and Syria but did not attack Jordan — asking instead for King Hussein of Jordan not to join the war. King Hussein did not have a good relationship with Egypt’s President Nasser (Nasser’s intelligence service had tried to assassinate the King multiple times), but when the rest of the Arab world lined up behind Nasser’s promise to destroy Israel, King Hussein of Jordan joined the attack.

Jordan’s decision to join this Arab allegiance to destroy Israel, despite a request from Israel that they do not, ended by Israel taking control of its own land that Jordan had occupied in 1948 and illegally annexed in 1950— specifically East Jerusalem and the land on the “west bank” of the Jordan River; Judea and Samaria

It was after the Six-Day War in 1967, when Israel reclaimed land that Jordan had seized from Israel, that East Jerusalem and Judea and Samaria (since dubbed “the West Bank”) became so-called “disputed territory” in the eyes for the International community, and Israel came to be called ‘occupiers’ and ‘settlers’ of their own land.

It should be noted that at no point from 1948 until 1967 did the international community ever view Jordan as "occupiers" of Judea and Samaria. 

The double standard is striking.

Israel is accused by the international community of not adhering to the Fourth Geneva Convention of 1949 with respect to Judea and Samaria — a statute which outlines the obligations of an “occupying power” in times of war.  The Fourth Geneva Convention cannot be applied to Israel, as it cannot be an occupying powerin its own land — land it reclaimed from illegal annexation by Jordan.

The only “occupying power” in violation of the Fourth Geneva Convention in Judea and Samaria was Jordan, from the years 1948 – 1967.

Final Thoughts…

Most obvious, Jewish inhabitants of outpost towns in Judea and Samaria cannot be “settlers” or “occupiers“. Judea and Samaria has always been part of Israel, both in ancient times (beyond the scope of this article) and in modern times.  The Arabs rejected the Partition Plan which would have given them all of Gaza and all of Judea and Samaria, in exchange for peace and rejected a similar offer in 2000. It seems apparent that any amount of land for a Jewish state is too much.

The Jews of Judea and Samaria have always been willing to live in peace with its non-Jewish inhabitants.

All the Arab inhabitants have ever needed to do is;

(1) recognize Israel as a Jewish state

and

(2) promise to live in peace with it.

It seems apparent from modern history that the Arabs do not want a Jewish state of any size that they need to recognize.

Struggle for Amona – the struggle for national sovereignty

Amona is an Israeli outpost village founded in 1997 in central Samaria (Benyamin region). Amona lies on a steep ridge, 70 meters above the closest neighboring village of Ofra, which is one kilometer to the west. Benyamin Region (where the Tribe of Benjamin originate from) is a mountainous area, 850–900 meters above sea level and has relatively dry and mild summers and cold winters — even seeing snow for several days each year.

Amona has a current population of 42 families, with a total of several hundred residents — most of whom farm the land.

Sheep and lamb farm in Amona (photo by Brian John Thomas)
Sheep and lamb farm in Amona (photo by Brian John Thomas)

Some in Amona  raise sheep and lamb…

 

15380858_10154119027631716_6031557709022414275_n
baby lamb under heat lamp (photo by Brian John Thomas)

 

 

 

 

 

 

15355743_10104191232693023_2487786853714765833_n
Amona Vineyard (photo by Joshua Wander)

…while others farm for fruit, including grapes and olives.

Amona is known for producing award-winning wine.

15349579_10104191232673063_3287932742227080831_n
Award winning wine (photo by Joshua Wander)

In August 2016, the High Court of Israel ruled that the houses and vineyards of Amona had been mistakenly built on ‘private land’ and the ruling has slated Amona for evacuation by December 24 2016 – a little more than a week and a half away followed by bulldozing of the entire community — ending the livelihoods of the 42 families and their employees that live in Amona.

To understand the struggle for Amona requires understanding of the modern history of Judea and Samaria and whether it is even possible that Amona is built on ‘private Arab land’ 

We’ll touch on that history here.

Please see Judea and Samaria - the West Bank of the Jordan, our next article for more detail. http://www.morehasbara.com/2016/12/13/judea-samaria-west-bank-jordan/

The land on which Amona is built was gifted by King Hussein of Jordan to a close associate of his during the period in which Jordan illegally occupied Judea and Samaria (1948-1967). That period began on May 15, 1948, when the surrounding Arab nations of Jordan, Syria and Egypt attacked the one-day old State of Israel in an attempt to destroy it — beginning the 10-month-long War of Independence. 

At the end of that war (March 1949), Egypt occupied Gaza and Jordan occupied Judea and Samaria as well as East Jerusalem — having seized them from Israel, by military force. On April 24, 1950, Jordan annexed  both East Jerusalem and Judea and Samaria which was considered illegal by most of the international community, including all of the Arab states.  At no point from 1948 until 1967 was Judea and Samaria ever considered by the international community as being “Jordan”.  This area on the west bank of the Jordan River was referred to as “the west bank” so as to distinguish it from the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan, which lay on “the east bank” of the Jordan River.

In 1923, when Britain created Jordan (then called Transjordan) giving 75% of the land that had been set aside by the Balfour Declaration for a “national Jewish homeland” to this first Arab-Palestinian state — it left only 25% of the land on the “west bank of the Jordan” for the Jewish state. That is, the tiny remaining piece of land included Judea and Samaria something Jordan knew since 1923.

In 1948, when Jordan illegally seized Judea and Samaria, it had known for the previous 25 years (1923-1948), that it belonged to the future Jewish state and it knew that Judea and Samaria belonged to Israel when the State of Israel was created on May 14, 1948.

It was only after the Six-Day War in 1967, when Israel reclaimed its own land that had been illegally annexed by Jordan from Israel, that Judea and Samaria (“West Bank”) and East Jerusalem became “disputed territory” to the international community — and Israel came to be called “occupiers” and “settlers” of their own land.

Judea and Samaria has been part of Israel since biblical times and even in modern history, it was included in the land earmarked for the Jewish national homeland since the 1917 Balfour Declaration. Even after the first Arab-Palestinian state of TransJordan was created in 1923, Judea and Samaria was included in the remaining 25% of the the land that was for the establishment of the Jewish state.

partition-plan-jewish-virtual-libraryThat said, the Jewish people were willing as part of the 1947 Partition Plan to retain the small region of Galilee in the north and the large Negev desert area in the south, with the remainder going to a second Palestinian Arab-state — something the Jews accepted and the Arabs rejected.

The Arabs refused the 4,500 square miles that was offered to them, including Judea and Samaria and Gaza because the 5,500 square miles that would remain for the Jewish state was considered “too much”.

Even as recently as the year 2000, when Israel proposed trading land for peace by agreeing to give the Arabs of the region a sovereign state in more than 95% Judea and Samaria and all of Gaza —the Palestinian leadership responded by sending waves of suicide terrorists into Israel.  

Any amount of Israel remaining in Jewish hands is still “too much”.

The international community believes that Israeli towns and villages in Judea and Samaria  fall under the Fourth Geneva Convention of 1949 — which outlines the obligations of an “occupying power” in times of war. Israel maintains that the Geneva Convention cannot possibly be applied to Israel with respect to Judea and Samaria, as it can’t be an occupying powerin its own land — land reclaimed from illegal annexation during the Six-Day War which Egypt, Syria and Jordan, started.

Struggle for Amona – Struggle for National Sovereignty

amona5

For the last 19 years, whoever has held “deed” to this land has been absent —expressing no interest in the land whatsoever, while these Jewish families have tilled it and caused it to become productive.

The struggle for Amona is a struggle for the rights of these 42 Jewish families who have built their lives and earn their livelihood (and the livelihoods of those they employee) from their labour.

The struggle for Amona is also the struggle for national sovereignty of Israel over her own land.

That land in Judea and Samaria was gifted by the King of Jordan to colleagues during the period that Jordan illegally occupied it, does not make the land the possession of those to whom he gave it. It was not the King of Jordan’s to give!

In almost any civilized nation, the recipient of stolen property does not become the “owner” of it — it remains the possession of its rightful owner.

Likewise, if stolen property is later sold, those who purchase it do not become the “owner of it” — it continues to remain the possession of its rightful owner. A person or people who buy stolen property anticipate that when it is returned to its rightful owner, that they will lose the money they paid for it, as well as lose the property itself.

The Jordanian king having given parcels of land in Judea and Samaria to Arab Hashemites colleagues that his Kingdom had illegally occupied and annexed from Israel does not make that land the possession of (1) these families (2) their descendants nor (3) anyone that may have subsequently purchased it from them.

While local Arabs may hold a “deed” to this, is about as significant as a having a “receipt” for purchase of a stolen car.

15391512_10104190277836563_5314581155805949991_o
ruins of Amona (photo by Joshua Wander)

It expected that when stolen property is returned to its rightful owner, that the purchaser lose the money paid for it, as well as lose the property itself. While Israel owes them nothing, how would it be anything other generous for the Israeli government to pay fair market value to those hold “deed” to a land they have been absent from for almost 20 years, and on which the Jewish residents of Amona live?

 

UPDATE: Please see Ultimatum in Amona – rejected by residents! http://www.morehasbara.com/2016/12/15/ultimatum-in-amona-update-dec-15-2016/

 

 


Here is a short video created by Joshua Wander on Amona:

The Middle-East Situation (Illustrated)

INTRODUCTION: The situation in the Middle East is said to be one of the most complex problems in the world, but it’s very simple. This post was compiled from a transcript of Dennis Prager’s video “The Middle East Problem” with photos captured from that video. Prager explains how and when the modern state of Israel was founded and how, since that day in 1948, its neighbors have tried to destroy it, again and again.


“When I did my graduate studies at the Middle East Institute at Columbia University’s School of International Affairs, I took many courses on the question of the Middle East conflict. Semester after semester, we studied the Middle East conflict as if it was the most complex conflict in the world — when in fact, it is probably the easiest conflict in the world to explain. It may be the hardest to solve, but it is the easiest to explain. In a nutshell, it’s this: one side wants the other side dead. “

— Dennis Prager

Israel wants to exist as a Jewish state and to live in peace. Israel also recognizes the right of Palestinians to have their own state and to live in peace. The problem, however, is that most Palestinians and many other Muslims and Arabs, do not recognize the right of the Jewish state of Israel to exist.

capture_2016-11-26-09-03-522

This has been true since 1947, when the United Nations voted to divide the land under the British Mandate for Palestine — into a Jewish state and an Arab state.

capture_2016-11-26-09-10-362

The Jews accepted the United Nations partition but no Arab nor any other Muslim country accepted it.

capture_2016-11-26-09-09-552

When British rule ended on May 15, 1948, the armies of all the neighboring Arab states —Lebanon, Syria, Iraq, Trans-Jordan and Egypt — attacked the one-day old state of Israel in order to destroy it.

capture_2016-11-26-09-11-192

But, to the world’s surprise, the little Jewish state survived.

Then it happened again. In 1967, the dictator of Egypt, Gamal Abdel Nasser announced his plan, in his words, “to destroy Israel.”

capture_2016-11-26-09-11-452

He placed Egyptian troops on Israel’s border…

capture_2016-11-26-09-11-572

… and armies of surrounding Arab countries were also mobilized to attack.

capture_2016-11-26-09-12-092

However, Israel preemptively attacked Egypt and Syria.

capture_2016-11-26-09-12-222

Israel did not attack Jordan, and begged Jordan’s king not to join the war.

But he did.

capture_2016-11-26-09-12-512

And only because of that did Israel take control of Jordanian land, specifically the “West Bank” of the Jordan River.

capture_2016-11-26-09-14-242

Shortly after the war, the Arab states went to Khartoum, Sudan and announced their famous three “No’s”:

No recognition, no peace, and no negotiations”

capture_2016-11-26-09-14-422

What was Israel supposed to do?

Well, one thing Israel did, a little more than a decade later, in 1978, was to give the entire Sinai Peninsula — an area of land bigger than Israel itself…

capture_2016-11-26-09-15-002

and with oil — back to Egypt…

capture_2016-11-26-09-15-192

… because Egypt, under new leadership, signed a peace agreement with Israel.

So, Israel gave land for the promise of peace with Egypt…

capture_2016-11-26-09-17-102

…and it has always been willing to do the same thing with the Palestinians.

capture_2016-11-26-09-15-492

All the Palestinians have ever had to do is:

(1) recognize Israel as a Jewish state

and

(2) promise to live in peace with it.

capture_2016-11-26-09-17-502

capture_2016-11-26-09-18-262

But when Israel has proposed trading land for peace — as it did in 2000 when it agreed to give the Palestinians a sovereign state in more than 95% of the “West Bank” and all of Gaza —the Palestinian leadership responded by sending waves of suicide terrorists into Israel. 

capture_2016-11-26-09-19-012


Meanwhile, Palestinian radio, television and school curricula remain filled with glorification of terrorists

capture_2016-11-26-09-19-222

… the demonization of Jews

capture_2016-11-26-09-19-342

… and the daily repeated message that Israel should cease to exist.

capture_2016-11-26-09-19-432


 

So it’s not hard to explain the Middle-East dispute:

One side wants the other dead.

capture_2016-11-26-09-07-322

 

capture_2016-11-26-09-07-572


 

The motto of Hamas, the Palestinian rulers of Gaza, is:

“We love death as much as the Jews love life.”

capture_2016-11-26-09-22-392


There are 22 Arab states in the world — stretching from the Atlantic Ocean to the Indian Ocean…

capture_2016-11-26-09-23-012

 

There is 1 “Jewish State” in the world.

It’s about the size of New Jersey; in fact, tiny El Salvador is larger than Israel.

capture_2016-11-26-09-23-162


 

Finally, think about these two questions:

“If, tomorrow, Israel laid down its arms and announced, “We will fight no more,” what would happen? And if the Arab countries around Israel laid down their arms and announced “We will fight no more,” what would happen?”

 

(1) In the first case, there would be an immediate destruction of the state of Israel and the mass murder of its Jewish population.

capture_2016-11-26-09-24-332

capture_2016-11-26-09-25-022

 


(2) In the second case, there would be peace the next day.

capture_2016-11-26-09-25-392

capture_2016-11-26-09-25-232

 

“As I said at the outset, it is a simple problem to describe: one side wants the other dead — and if it didn’t, there would be peace.”

— Dennis Prager

 

capture_2016-11-26-09-26-392

 


“Please remember this; there has never been a state in the geographic area known as Palestine that was not Jewish.”

 

(1) Israel is the third Jewish state to exist in that area

capture_2016-11-26-09-26-592

capture_2016-11-26-09-27-112

capture_2016-11-26-09-27-272

 

(2) There was NEVER an Arab state

capture_2016-11-26-09-27-372

 

(3) There was NEVER a Palestinian state

capture_2016-11-26-09-27-452

 

(4) there was NEVER a Muslim state

capture_2016-11-26-09-28-312

 

(5) There was NEVER any other state…

capture_2016-11-26-09-27-542

That’s the issue. 

 

Why can’t the one Jewish state the size of El Salvador be allowed to exist?

 

“That is the Middle-East problem.”

– Dennis Prager, April 28, 2014

 

 

 


Sponsorship of the video from the Adam and Gila Milstein Family Foundation.

UNESCO Adopts ‘Occupied Palestine’ Resolution

Following Mexico’s withdrawal of its intention yesterday to force a re-vote one day before the close of proceedings, the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) has adopted its controversial “Occupied PalestineResolution (Tuesday, October 18 2016).

Under pressure from Western states, Mexico backed away from its initial intention to call for a re-vote, after having taken issue with the resolution referring to Jerusalem holy sites only by their Islamic names. Western states were concerned that Mexico taking such action could lead to future calls for re-votes on future resolutions already voted on and passed by consensus. Instead, Mexico noted for the record that its position on the matter was one of abstention, but its revised position does not change the vote’s count.

Mexico’s Foreign Ministry posted a statement on its web site that it had abstained in recognition of the “undeniable Jewish cultural heritage that is located in east Jerusalem.

In a surprising move today, Brazil spoke at the final board session, indicating that it was unlikely to support such resolutions in the future.

After ratification of the resolution, the Jerusalem Post reports that Israel’s Ambassador to UNESCO, Carmel Shama-Hacohen said:

“We have moved forward a step-and-a-half toward dismantling the automatic majority that the Palestinians and the Arab states have against Israel.

The best surprise of the morning is Brazil’s notification that while it did not change its vote this time, it will find it difficult not to do, if there is a resolution with another text that disregards the Jewish people’s connection to the Temple Mount and the Western Wall.”

UNESCO’s Denial of the Jewish Connection to the Temple Mount

The “Occupied PalestineResolution is the latest of such measures taken by UNESCO – where Israel and its allies are far outnumbered by Arab countries and their supporters, and a body that admitted the ‘Palestinians’ as members in 2011.

This latest resolution was put forth by the ‘Palestinians‘, Egypt, Algeria, Morocco, Lebanon, Oman, Qatar and Sudan and was passed with 24 votes in favour, six against and 26 abstentions. It follows close on the heels of a similar one passed by UNESCO April 16 2016, which condemned “Israeli aggressions and illegal measures against the freedom of worship and Muslim access to the al-Aqsa Mosque” and which referred to the Temple Mount site by only its Arabic names.

Like the UNESCO resolution passed in April, the “Occupied PalestineResolution also refers to the Temple Mount site only by the site’s Muslim name, al-Haram al Sharif (Arabic for “the Noble Sanctuary”) and to the Western Wall (the remaining outer wall of the Second Temple) only as al-Buraq Plaza and by doing so, effectively denies the Jewish connection to both the Temple Mount and the Western Wall.

Last Thursday, Israeli Prime Minister, Benjamin Netanyahu said;

“To say that Israel has no connection to the Temple Mount and the Western Wall is like saying that China has no connection to the Great Wall of China and that Egypt has no connection to the pyramids. With this absurd decision, UNESCO lost the little legitimization it had left.”

‘Palestinian Demands’

Today, ‘Palestinians’ deputy ambassador to UNESCO, Mounir Anastas told Al-Jazeera that the resolution;

“reminds Israel that they are the occupying power in East Jerusalem and it asks them to stop all their violations, including archaeological excavations around religious sites.

The ‘Palestinians’ want excavations halted outside Temple Mount  complex, where monumental structures including the city gate, towers and part of the city wall of Jerusalem built by King Solomon during the 10th century BC have been uncovered.

[For more on this important archaeological dig, please see: http://www.morehasbara.com/2016/05/21/king-solomons-wall-discovered-outside-2nd-temple-wall/]

Historic Facts and Dates

The Temple Mount, Judaism’s holiest site is where the First and Second Jewish Temples once stood, and is located in the Old City section of Jerusalem, the Capital of Israel.

The First Temple (also called Solomon’s Temple) stood on the Temple Mount from 827 BC until it was destroyed by the Babylonians 470 years later. The Second Temple stood on the Temple Mount from 349 BC, until it was destroyed in 70 AD by the Romans. Prior to the arrival of the Romans, the Jewish people were politically independent and were governed by self-rule for ~80 years under the Hasmonean (Maccabean) Dynasty, beginning in ~167 BCE.

The first time an Arab government ruled in Jerusalem was in the sixth century AD with the rise of Islam, ~700 years after the Hasmonean Dynasty.

The Temple Mount complex (called ‘al-Haram al Sharif’, in Arabic) is considered the third holiest in Islam, after Mecca and Medina in Saudi Arabia. The golden topped Dome of the Rock mosque was built in 691 CE, with the smaller al-Aqsa mosque built ~20 years later. 

The Jewish Temples stood on the Temple Mount ~1500 years before the Arabs first arrived in Jerusalem in the 6th century AD with the advent of Islam.

Final Thoughts…

UNESCO’s “Occupied PalestineResolution denies history, but does not change history.

 

 

King Solomon’s Wall Discovered Outside 2nd Temple Wall

INTRODUCTION:

On April 15, 2016, UNESCO (United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization) passed a resolution (voted in by France,  Spain, Sweden, Russia and Slovenia and submitted by Algeria, Egypt, Lebanon, Morocco, Oman, Qatar and Sudan) which referred to the Temple Mount by its Arabic term Al-Haram Al-Sharif. While UNESCO seeks to deny or ignore that the Temple Mount has any Jewish heritage, archaeologists have uncovered monumental structures, including a city gate, towers and a royal structure believed to be part of the city wall of Jerusalem, built during the 10th century BCE by King Solomon.


Dr Eilat Mazar - Hebrew University

Dr. Eilat Mazar is head of the Shalem Center’s Institute of Archaeology, affiliated with the Hebrew University of Jerusalem and is the 3rd in a family of extraordinary Jewish archaeologists. She is the grand-daughter of Benjamin Mazar, who was the first archaeologist to get a permit to dig in the State of Israel. When Israel reclaimed Jerusalam in 1967, Benjamin Mazar began excavating the area around the Temple Mount.

Benajmin Mazar escavating around the Temple Mount 1967
Benajmin Mazar escavating around the Temple Mount 1967

Dr. Mazar participated in archaeological digs from a young age alongside her prominent archaeological grandfather, and like her grandfather demonstrates the reliability of the Hebrew Scriptures by linking archaeological evidence to the text of Scripture.

Eilat at 11 y o working with Benjamin Mazar
Eilat Mazar at 11 years old working with her grandfather, Benjamin Mazar

In 2005 Dr. Mazar headed the excavations at the summit of the City of David (on behalf of the Institute of Archaeology of Hebrew University of Jerusalem) and there she discovered what is believed to have been the palace of King David (who ruled from ~1005 to 965 BCE). She continued digging at this site until 2008.

Israel archeologist at dig
Israeli woman assisting at the dig site
Davids Palace escavation inside
inside David’s Palace escavation site

Within the structure, she found a clay seal (called a “bulla”) bearing in ancient Hebrew lettering the name Jehucal, son of Shelemiah, son of Shovi: an Israelite high-ranking official mentioned twice in the Bible (Jeremiah 37:3 and Jeremiah 38:1).

government seal of Jehucal
clay bulla of Jejucal

In July 2008, she found a second bulla only a few meters away from the first, belonging to Gedaliah, son of Pashur, who is also mentioned as a high-ranking official together with Jehucal (or “Jucal”) in Jeremiah 38:1.

On the eastern side of her City of David excavations, Dr. Mazar uncovered what she believes was Nehemiah’s wall…

Part of Nehemiah's wall
Part of Nehemiah’s wall

…and the water tunnel dug by King Hezekiah

water tunnel dug by Hezekiah
water tunnel dug by Hezekiah

Literally across the street from the City of David, Dr. Mazar has been directing another dig since 2009 (which continues until the present day) and that is the excavation at the Ophel site —  the area adjacent to the City of David; between the Temple Mount and the City of David. Here she uncovered more royal ruins — this time from David’s son Solomon.

In 2010, excavators revealed a giant wall more than 220 feet long, and almost 20 ft high. Dr. Mazar believes this is the wall described in 1 Kings 3:1 which says that Solomon built a wall all around Jerusalem. It connected the City of David with Solomon’s Temple.

Solomons wall outside Herods Temple Mount wall
Solomons wall outside Herods Temple Mount wall – with 2nd Temple wall behind
Solomons wall outside Herods Temple Mount wall - lower down
Solomons wall outside Herods Temple Mount wall – showing height of wall
Eilat Mazar beside Solomon's wall
Eilat Mazar beside Solomon’s wall

Here is a photo showing the area of this dig, in relation to the Temple Mount:

Eilat Mazar dig site outside Herods Temple
Dr. Eilat Mazar dig site outside Temple (Herod’s Temple) wall
The Ophel excavations at the foot of the southern wall of the Temple Mount in Jerusalem
The Ophel excavations at the foot of the southern wall of the Temple Mount in Jerusalem

Solomon’s Wall is only part of it…

Inside the wall, there was more evidence tying the site to King Solomon. 1 King 4:7 speaks of Solomon’s governors who provided food for the king and his household (which was very large, given Scripture saying Solomon had many wives). Inside the gate, Mazar’s team found large clay jars which were for holding grain and jar handles whose seals were inscribed “to the King”.

Inside Solomons Temple Gate - large clay jars for grain
Inside Solomons Temple Gate – large clay jars for grain
jar handles - seals inscribed to the king
jar handles – seals inscribed to the king

Dr. Mazar believes the jars of grain came from the royal bakery because on one of them, inscribed in ancient Hebrew are the words “to the Minister in charge of the bakery”.

Carbon dating at the site supports that pottery shards found at ground floor of the structure dated to the 10th century BCE, when Solomon was King.

CONCLUSION:

Based on archaeological evidence, in the 10th century BCE there was a vibrant Jewish civilization in Jerusalem capable of carrying out such advance construction and in which there were many artifacts, supported by carbon dating to be from that time.


 


Dr. Eilat Mazar -Scientific Biography:

EDUCATION

Hebrew University of Jerusalem (HUJ):

1997 – Ph.D. in Archaeology, under the supervision of Prof. E. Stern: “The Achziv Burials: A Test-Case for Phoenician-Punic Burial Customs”

1990 – M.A. in Archaeology, under the supervision of Prof. N. Avigad: “The Ophel of Biblical Jerusalem in the First Temple Period in Light of Archaeological Research”

1981 – B.A. in Archaeology and Jewish History

PROFESSIONAL MEMBERSHIPS

  • Public Committee against the Destruction of Antiquities on the Temple Mount
  • Archaeological Council of Israel
  • Directorate of the Israel Nature and Parks Authority
  • Government Names Committee

MAIN RESEARCH INTERESTS

Biblical Archaeology
The Archaeology of Jerusalem
The Archaeology of the Phoenicians

EXCAVATIONS AND RESEARCH – most recent

2009- on going project Director of the Ophel excavtions (First Temple Period), HUJ Institute of Archaeology

2005-2008 Director of City of David excavations, HUJ Institute of Archaeology, Jerusalem

1995- on going project Director of the Temple Mount Excavations Publication Project
(B. Mazar Excavations 1968-1978)

2002-2008 Senior Research Fellow, The Shalem Center ,Jerusalem; Director of the documentation of the Temple Mount Walls project and the City of David Excavations


Books by Dr. Eilat Mazar

2011 The Walls of the Temple Mount. Jerusalem (2 Vols)

2011 Discovering the Solomonic Wall in Jerusalem. Jerusalem

2011 The Temple Mount Excavations in Jerusalem, 1968-1978, Directed by Benjamin Mazar, Final Reports, Vol. IV: The Tenth Legion in Aelia Capitolina. (Qedem 52). Jerusalem

2009 The Palace of King David, Excavations at the Summit of the City of David. Preliminary Report of Seasons 2005-2007. Jerusalem

Video about this find: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VH9ZDHUyu7A&feature=youtu.be

Is the Temple Mount Really Islam’s 3rd Holiest Site?

“Palestinians” claim that the Temple Mount has always their holy site, but historical records and photographs from the late 1800s tell a very different story.

“Palestinians” claim that the Temple Mount (known to Muslims as the “Haram esh-Sharif” or “Noble Sanctuary” has always their holy site, yet photographic evidence testifies otherwise. While it is believed by Sunni Muslims that Mohammed ascended into heaven from the al-Asqa Mosque nearby, it is clear from these photographs of the Dome of the Rock that were taken in the late 1900’s by Felix Bonfils (1831-1885), a French photographer that the Temple Mount complex was very neglected under Ottoman (Muslim) rule. There are no people visible in any of the photographs and thick tufts of grass are seen growing between the paving stones in front of the Dome of the Rock mosque.

Let’s look at a brief history of the Temple Mount;

King Solomon, son of King David built the First Temple on the the Mount beginning in 833 BCE completing it in 827 BCE. The First Temple was destroyed by the Babylonians 470 years after it was built, and the Jews were taken captive to Babylon. In 353 BCE, exactly seventy years after the destruction of the First Temple, the Jews began building again after the captives returned from Babylon, under the Medo – Persian Empire.

The Second Temple, was constructed under Zerubbabel from 353 -349 BCE.

Prior to the arrival of the Romans, the Jews enjoyed political independence and self-rule under for ~80 years under the Hasmonean (Maccabean) Dynasty, beginning in ~167 BCE.

In 66 CE, after the Jews protested excessive Roman taxation, the Romans plundered the Second Temple and killed 6,000 Jews. This was the start of the Jewish-Roman war (66-73 CE). The Roman Emperor Titus ordered the burning of the Second Temple, which was only ~ 90 years old at the time.

[Note: To put this in context, the first time an Arab government ruled in that region was in the sixth century CE; 700 years later!]

The (Western) Roman Empire fell in the 5th century and Christians ruled the Land during the Byzantine Empire (Eastern Roman Empire) until the rise of Islam in the late 6th century.Islam sought to establish a very different type of “empire”; the Caliphate. The Caliphate is a form of Islamic government led by a Caliph who is considered to be the political and religious successor to the prophet Muhammad, and its role is to administer everything according to the teachings of Mohammed (“Sharia law”). The Sunni-Arab Caliphate was carved out an Islamic empire from the Sassanid (Persian) Empire and the former Byzantine Empire became the Islamic Umayyad Empire (661-750 CE).

Jerusalem was captured from the Christians by Caliph Omar in 632 CE and the Dome of the Rock was built in 691 CE by Caliph Abd el Malik of Syria as a means of demonstrating Islam’s superiority over the Christians and Jews that they had driven from Jerusalem. The Muslims continued to direct their prayers toward Mecca, and what they consider the holy Kaba (a stone cube).

The al-Aqsa mosque was built ~20 years after the Dome of the Rock.

The Christian Byzantine Empire (Eastern Roman Empire) continued until the Middle Ages, with it’s capital city at Constantinople (present-day Istanbul). The Ottoman Turks (Muslims) ended the Byzantine Empire with the 1453 conquest of Constantinople.

During the Ottoman Empire, the Grand Mufti of Constantinople was the religious scholar responsible for interpreting Sharia (Islamic) law. Constantinople was the centre of religious life, not Jerusalem. While the Temple Mount was held by the (Muslim) Ottoman Turks for several hundred years, there are no historical records of high Muslim clerics or kings coming to Jerusalem to worship at the al-aqsa mosque or the Dome of the Rock.

During the World War I (1914-1918) there were two competing Grand Muftis of Jerusalem; one endorsed by the British and one by the Ottomans, however after the war, with the British administering the land under the Mandate of Palestine, the British appointed the Grand Mufti of Jerusalem. In 1922, Haj Amin al-Husseini was appointed Grand Mufti of Jerusalem and took it upon himself to launch an international campaign to gather funds from Muslim lands in order to restore the al-Aqsa Mosque and the Dome of the Rock (which stands over the remains of the 2 Jewish Temples) — because the area had fallen into such disrepair.

Note: This is the same al-Husseini who later allied himself with Hitler, became very close friends with Heinrich Himmler and became known as the “Fuhrer of the Arabic world” — leading 30,000 Muslim Nazi SS to destroy the “Jewish element living in the Arab sphere”.  [seehttp://www.morehasbara.com/2015/10/24/nazi-influence-in-the-middle-east-haj-amin-al-husseini/]

Prior to 1922, the Temple Mount was not revered as a major holy site in Islam.

As can be clearly seen in Bonafil’s photographs from the 1870’s, the Temple Mount was neglected, largely unused and the Dome of the Rock was unattended and fell into disrepair.  The building show decay and weeds and grass grew up between the stones; which would not occur if throngs of Muslim worshipers were coming there.

13122818_1151292484903432_211252096153891573_o

 

The “Palestinians” claim that they have been in the Land “since time immemorial” and the Temple Mount (or as they refer to it the al-Haram al-Sharif) has been their holy site “from the beginning“.  The historical record, however indicates the Jews lived in the Land and built the First Temple almost 1500 years before the Arabs arrived and that Jewish rulers (Maccabees of the Hasmonean Dynasty) ruled the Jewish Land 700 years before the Arabs came and conquered it; long after the Roman Empire and after the Christians.

The “Palestinians” refer to Jews as the “settlers” and “occupiers” but history establishes otherwise.  The Arabs claim the Temple Mount has always been the third holiest site in Islam, but 1922, when al-Husseini applied himself to the task of restoring the neglected site wasn’t that long ago.  It has not even been 100 years.

“Time immemorial” is seems, is rather short.


UPDATE: A lecturer with the Department of Arabic at Bar-Ilan University and expert in military intelligence, Arab political discourse and Arab mass media recently raised some doubt as to whether the al-Aqsa Mosque in Jerusalem is same al-Aqsa Mosque mentioned in the Qu’uran. If it is not, that would shed a very different light on ‘Palestinian’ claims that the Temple Mount is the 3rd holiest site in Islam. http://www.morehasbara.com/2016/08/16/is-the-al-aqsa-mosque-in-jerusalem-the-one-in-the-quuran/

 

Where did the Palestinians of Today Come From?

Central to the discussion regarding the Land and who are its original inhabitants is the origin of those that call themselves ‘Palestinians’. This article tackles where they came from and when, with documentation.

Where is Palestine – a brief history

There has never been an Arab state called “Palestine”.   The term “Palestine” is a geographical term used to designate the region at specific points in history; (1) under the Romans (Syria Palaestina, 135-390 AD), (2) a province of the Byzantine Empire (Palestina Secunda or Palestina II – 390 AD ) and (3) a region under British administration (British Mandate for Palestine, 1920-1948).

The land of Israel changed hands three times between 614 and 638 CE; first to the Persians (614 CE), then the Christian Byzantines (629 CE) and finally to the Arab Muslims in 638 CE.

The Arabs first came to the Land in the 6th century CE, after the Jews had already been ruled for almost 100 years by a Jewish Dynasty (the Hasmodian Dynasty, aka as the Maccabees).  This was prior to Romans overthrowing the Hasmodian Dynasty during the Jewish-Roman Wars. Prior to the rule of the Hasmonean Dynasty, the Jews had been in the Land for ~ 1500 years.

[UPDATE: In March 2016, a 2500 year old Jewish seal was found in Jerusalem, dating from the first Jewish Temple Period, clearly establishing that there was an established  Jewish presence at that time.

[see http://www.morehasbara.com/2016/05/21/king-solomons-wall-discovered-outside-2nd-temple-wall/].

The Arabs arrived substantially later, when they first invaded the land and besieged Gaza in 634 CE, and defeated the Byzantines (636 CE) and two years later, conquered Jerusalem.

The Western half of the Byzantine Empire fell in 476 CEbut the Eastern half survived for 1,000 more years and fell to the Ottoman Turks when their Muslim army stormed Constantinople in 1453. 

The Ottoman Turks (converted to Islam in the 8th and 9th centuries) began traveling westward from the area now known as Turkey, into Europe and then through the Middle East, conquering lands as they went.  In 1453, the Ottoman Turks stormed Constantinople, renaming it Istanbul and destroyed the last remains of the Byzantine Empire. Under the Ottoman Empire (1517-1917 CE) the geographic area of southern Syria was referred to as ‘Palestine’ but wasn’t a state or province and was indistinguishable from southern Syria.

(3) At the end of WWI (1921), the former Ottoman Turkish Empire was carved up, with the British becoming responsible for administering the Holy Land, a region which became known as the British Mandate of Palestine.

Changing Demographics of Jerusalem – under Arab and Christian Occupation (638 CE – 1917 CE)

Arab Rule – part one

When the Arabs conquered Jerusalem in 638 C.E,  the majority of the population was Christian.  Umar, the first Caliph (Islamic representative) lifted the almost 500 year ban against Jewish residence imposed by the Christians under the Byzantine Empire and invited the Jews to return, live and worship once again in Jerusalem.

The Umayyads oversaw the construction of the Dome of the Rock mosque in 691 CE (almost 700 years after the time of Jesus), built near the area formerly occupied by Herod’s Temple (the Second Temple) and close by the Kotel (Western Wall)  — the last remnant of Solomon’s temple (the first Temple*). The Dome of the Rock was constructed over the outcropping of limestone rock which Jewish tradition held to be the place of Abraham’s intended sacrifice of Isaac and which Islamic tradition points to the sacred rock as the place from which Muhammad began his Ascent to Heaven to receive Allah’s final revelation. They also built the al-Asqa mosque in 705 CE. Under the Umayyad empire, Damascus (Syria) was their capital.

[*As mentioned above, the seal that was found in March 2016, and an earlier one found in 2007, both originated from the First Temple Period.]

For four centuries (691 – 1099 CE) the Jews and Christians lived peacefully along side the Muslims before the beginning of centuries of ‘holy wars’.

Christian Rule

In 1099 CE, the Crusaders stormed Jerusalem and massacred its Muslim and Jewish populations. Residence by non-Christians was banned and Jerusalem became the capital of the Latin Kingdom. Throughout the Crusader Period, neither Muslims nor Jews were allowed to live in Jerusalem.

The Temple Mount (known to the Arabs as the “Haram al-Sharif”) was desecrated and the Dome of the Rock was converted into a church. The al-Aqsa mosque became the residence of the king.

The Latin Kingdom of Jerusalem lasted only eighty-eight years.

Arab Rule – part two

In 1187, the Abbasids recaptured Jerusalem and for the next seven centuries, except for a very short period, Jerusalem remained under Muslim rule. Civilians were spared and churches were largely left untouched but the Dome of the Rock and al-Asqa mosque reverted back to their original use.

After the Abbasids took control, the capital was moved from Damascus (Syria) to Baghdad (Iraq) and Jerusalem began to decline.

In 1219, under threat of another Crusade, the walls of Jerusalem were originally reconstructed then later dismantle with most of the population of Jerusalem finally leaving the un-walled, ill-defended city. Battles took place between the Mongols and Muslims but for the most part, Jerusalem remained uninhabited and in decline.

Ottoman Empire

Jerusalem fell to the Ottomans in 1517 but the Sultan did not make the city a district capital. During the first part of their rule, Jews were allowed to practice their religion and the Holy Land became a refuge for Jews fleeing persecution under the Christian Crusaders in Europe.

With the decentralization of Ottoman rule in the mid 16th century, the lives of the Jews declined. Much of the land was in the hands of absentee landlords,  fell into disrepair and arable land returned to desert.  

In the last two decades of Ottoman rule, the first waves of Jewish immigrants mainly from Russia arrived in the Holy Land; coming to build a better life for themselves and fulfill their dreams of living in the Holy Land.

The Armenian Christians initially prospered during Ottoman rule and gained control over their own quarter in Jerusalem, comprising over 20% of the Christian population in Jerusalem by the late 17th century. Over the following two hundred years and during and just after WWI however, the Ottomans massacred between 1 – 1.5  million Armenians worldwide.

At the end of WWI (1921), the former Ottoman Turkish Empire was divided up, with the British becoming responsible for administering the Holy Land, a region which became known as the British Mandate for Palestine. It is very telling to see photos of what this area looked like just prior to them taking it over from the Ottomans — an arid, un-farmed land which was very sparsely populated. More on that below (with actual photos from the late 1800’s.

Southern Syria largely uninhabited under the Ottoman Turks

The region of southern Syria which included the Holy Land had fallen into disrepair largely due to the absence of Ottomans in the region, as the center of rule was Istambul (in present-day Turkey) — formerly Constantanople.

Félix Bonfils (1831-1885) was a French photographer and writer who was active in the Middle East and traveled to the region several times in the late 1800’s, while the region was still under Ottoman rule. Below are some of his photographs taken from late 1800’s.

Of the 9,000 photos taken by Bonfils, none show any evidence of any large-scale settlements — Arab or otherwise. 

gihon-valley-palestine-300x234

mur-des-juifs-un-vendredi-300x228

felix-bonfils-solomons-pools-300x221

felix-bonfils-modern-jericho-300x229

dome-of-the-rock-1875-300x232

Bonfils_Félix_1831-1885_-_613_-_Joueurs_de_violon_bedouins-300x232

755px-birket_israel_19th_century-300x239

Here are a few other photos that are part of a collection from Harvard that were taken and collected by the Austrian chemist Dr. Rudolph Avraham Seiden.

 

Grave-of-Maimonides-Rambam-in-Tiberias-circa-1920.-300x185

Grave of Maimonides (Rambam) in Tiberias (circa 1920).

British Mandated Palestine

When the British took control of the region in 1921, after WWI and the collapse of the Ottoman empire, the Holy Land was undeveloped and the population small.  The British  census of October 23, 1922 reported there were only 757,182 individuals including military and “persons of foreign nationality“.

Broken down according to religion, there were 590 794 Muslims  (“Mohammedans”), 83 794 Jews , 73 024 Christians and 9 474 “others” — Baha’i, Samaritans, etc.

The survey also notes that it included “persons of foreign nationality” in the census including those that came “from Syria and Asia Minor (Turkey)…since the British occupation, which presumably would be Muslims.

So where did the so-called ‘Palestinians’ come from?

Remember, the Grand Mufti of Jerusalem?  Yes, the same Haj Amin al-Husseini who later went on to collaborate with Hitler and Himmler? See his role in this, below.

During Ottoman rule

During the Ottoman Empire, Arab migrant workers began to come to work in the Land, beginning around 1831-1947 and towns such as Haifa, Jaffa and Jerusalem saw an increase in their population under Ottoman rule between 1880 and 1919. For example, Haifa’s Arab population surged from 6,000 to 80,000, mostly due to migrant workers.

 

Influx of Muslim Arabs Into Palestine

Importation of Arab migrant workers that began under the Ottoman Empire, continued under the British Mandate, and Arabs were enticed to come to work on major civilian and military infrastructure projects. Legal and illegal Arab migrants were also attracted by economic growth generated by the Jewish community that began, starting in 1882.

After the creation of the first Arab Palestinian state (Hashemite Kingdom of Transjordan, renamed Jordan) in 1921, the newly appointed Grand Mufti of Jerusalem, Haj Amin al-Husseini began a intentional campaign to populate the British Mandate for Palestine (which was largely uninhabited) with Muslim Arabs.   

Al-Husseini knew that just prior to the creation of the Mandate for Palestine (1920), the United Kingdom’s Foreign Secretary Arthur James Balfour signed the Balfour Declaration of 1917 (dated 2 November 1917) which committed the British government to ‘the establishment in Palestine of a National Home for the Jewish people‘. The Balfour Declaration was intended and understood by British officials to mean that Palestine would ultimately become a ‘Jewish Commonwealth’ or a ‘Jewish State’; provided Jews came and settled there in sufficient numbers (i.e when a Jewish majority was achieved) — the wording of which was later incorporated into the British Mandate for Palestine.

Al-Husseini’s goal was to prevent a Jewish majority in the tiny piece of remaining land earmarked for the Jewish national homeland and to this end, the Grand Mufti, Haj Amin al-Husseini encouraged the mass influx of Arab Muslims from neighbouring countries. He used the noble concept of Muslims moving to non-Muslim lands in order to claim them for Islam to motivate Arab Muslims to move there. The largest influx of Muslims was in the mid 1920’s to late 1930’s.

[Great Britain and Palestine, 1915-1945, Information Paper no. 20, 3d ed. (London: Royal Institute for International Affairs, 1946), p. 64. C.S. Jarvis, “Palestine,” United Empire (London), 28 (1937): 633. Census of Palestine 1922, Census of Palestine 1931, Also see quote from Zahir Muhsein, Palestinian Liberation Organization (PLO), March 1977, below.]

British Census Date – 1922 and 1931

British Census data supports this significant increase in Muslims.

As mentioned above, just after the British began administering Palestine, census data (October 23, 1922) reported only 757,182 individuals including military and “persons of foreign nationality” and those that had recently arrived from Syria and Asia Minor (Turkey), presumably Muslim.

The 1922 data were broken down by religion, indicating that there were 590 890 Muslims (“Mohammedans”), 83 694 Jews and 73 024 Christians.

Palestine-1922-Census-cover-200x300       Palestine-1931-Census-183x300

 

In 1931 the British took a second population census which reported 1,035,821 individuals.  The population broken down by religion was as follows: 759 712 Muslims (total) / 693159 (settled)*, 174 610 Jews, 91 398 Christians, 9 148 Druze — with the rest Baha’i, Samaritan, etc.

*Note: for the purpose of the census, “houses” were defined as “an enclosure or residence of one or more families having a separate entrance from the common way” and could be either “attached” or “semi-detached“.  In 1931, a total of 66,553 Muslims lived in a dwelling other than a “house” but none of the Jews, Christians, Druze, Bahai’s or Samaritans did.

Comparing the 1931 census data with the 1922 census data indicates that;

  1. Muslims (“Mohammedans”) increased by 168822 individuals (102269 living in “houses” and 66553 in another kind of dwelling),
  2. Jews increased by 90 916 individuals
  3. Christians increased by 18  374 individuals

The Muslim population of mandated Palestine increased by 169,000 Muslims between 1922 and 1931, but during the same time period, the Jewish population only increased by 91, 000 JewsThe most notable increase in Muslim population was in Southern Palestine, Be’ersheva and the Jerusalem area.

Keep in mind, the data above is only up to 1931.

In order to claim the land for Islam and ensure there wasn’t a Jewish majority, the Grand Mufti, Haj Amin Al-Husseini continued to recruit Muslims to move to mandated Palestine until the late 1930’s.

According to a 1937 report by the British Peel Commission and published in the book, Palestine Betrayed

“during 1922 through 1931, the increase of Arab population in the mixed-towns of Haifa, Jaffa and Jerusalem was 86%, 62% and 37% respectively

Professor Efraim Karsh, “Palestine Betrayed”

It is these Arabs; ones who were enticed under the Ottoman Empire, the British Mandate for Palestine and directly by Haj Amin al-Husseini who are the so-called “Palestinians” of today — Muslim Arabs whose parents and grandparents emigrated to the British Mandate for Palestine from the late 1800’s to the late 1930’s.

These Arabs were not born in Palestine (under the Ottomans or the British).  They did not originate from Palestine. They moved there .

But from where?

The Royal Institute for International Affairs sheds some light on the origin of the increased Arab Muslim population during the 1920s and 1930s when it reports:

“The number of Arabs who have entered Palestine illegally from Syria and Transjordan is unknown but is probably considerable.”

[source: Great Britain and Palestine, 1915-1945, Information Paper no. 20, 3d ed. (London: Royal Institute for International Affairs, 1946), p. 64.]

The governor of the Sinai from 1923-36 C.S. Jarvis also indicated  where these Arab Muslims came from,  when he said that:

“illegal immigration was not only going on from the Sinai, but also from Trans-Jordan and Syria”

[source: C.S. Jarvis, “Palestine,” United Empire (London), 28 (1937): 633.]

“The Sinai” is Egypt.

These newly arrived Muslim Arabs came from; (1) Egypt and (2) Transjordan and (3) Syria; Hashemite Arabs. 

It is the descendants of these that call themselvesPalestinians“.


Footnote: Al-Husseini further added to the population imbalance of Muslim Arabs over Jews in the land by writing to Colonial Secretary Winston Churchill in 1921, demanding that restrictions be placed on Jewish immigration.  As tensions between the Jews and the increasing Arab population rose, the British government, then under the leadership of Churchill issued a White Paper (1939) restricting Jewish immigration certificates issued by the mandatory power to maximum of 75,000.  This was just as thousands of Jews were trying to flee the escalating Nazi violence in Europe and emigrate to the Holy Land and re-establish the Jewish homeland.   This left the Jews few options for escape the Nazis.

Al-Husseini did not stop there…

As you can read about it previous articles, al-Husseini then left the Middle East for Berlin where after meeting with Adolf Hitler, went onto to become the “Arab Fuhrer” — working closely with head of the Gestapo and SS Henrich Himmler (architect of the concentration camps) to carry out their shared goal to eradicate the Jews.