WHILE YOU STAND ON ONE LEG: As important as it is for us to confront the Airbnbs, Prof. Hills, BDSers, biased media, chanters of “From the River to the Sea …” and such, we have to get through to people in the West in clear simple terms the strength of our own case to the land of Israel, Palestine west of the Jordan, as the historic homeland of Jews. We can make the case that We Never Left and that a Two-State Solution partition of Palestine – Jordan and Israel – has already occurred.
Charting a Positive Personal Course for 2019
Each of us who strongly believes that Our Time, which saw rekindling of homeland Jewish independence in the land of Israel after a lapse of eighteen hundred years, is a special time in our people’s long history personally renewed our vow, as the secular year turned at the start of this month, to stand by Israel, as Ben-Gurion pleaded with Diaspora Jews in 1948, in the struggle for fulfillment of the Dream of Generations for its redemption.
So be it, but how? Yes, we must respond to those who disparage Jewish homeland equity in the land of Israel, the Airbnbs and Prof. Hills and BDSers and biased media and such, but more I think is required of us than post-disparagement responses. We have to be as crystal clear in our message to publics in the West as to what we claim as are our adversaries who chant incessantly “from the river to the sea, Palestine will be free.” We have to claim the entirety of the land of Israel, Palestine west of the Jordan – including Jerusalem period and the Judea-Samaria hill country heartland. Yes, this disregards the U.N.’s demand, in the Obama administration’s final days, for Israel’s retreat to the militarily indefensible 1949 Israel-Jordan military ceasefire lines, but that 2016 U.N. resolution itself contravened its post-67 War 242 and League of Nations Palestine Mandate adopted as of its inception by the U.N.
So how can we get through, in crystal clear simple terms, to people in the West that that narrow strip of land between the River and Sea is the land of Israel of the Jews and not the “Palestine” of “the Palestinians”? We have two lines of argument – legal and historical.
Look first at the salient historical points:
*** Biblical era Jewish homeland history happened: Whether you personally believe in the Divine interventions or not, the Jewish people’s homeland history recorded in both the Hebrew and Christian bibles historically happened. The United Nations, with the nations of Europe joining, can exclusively call the Temple Mount “Haram al-Sharif” or whatever it wants. But it was the Temple Mount first.
*** Jews Never Left, Israel Next Native State: Despite widespread misperception that “the Romans exiled the Jews,” the historical fact is We Jews Never Left. We remained in the land, and broader Mideast, all through the centuries of continuous foreign empire rule between Roman defeat of the final Judaea revolt in 135 and modern Israel’s reattainment of homeland sovereignty as the land of Israel’s next native state in 1948. British historian Parkes succinctly put it this way: The continuous post-biblical presence of the Yishuv all through the centuries, in spite of every discouragement, wrote the Zionists’ “real title deeds.”
*** Arabs Not “THE Palestinians”: Arabs in Palestine are not “The Palestinians.” During the Mandate, Jews, Christians and Muslims living there, especially the Jews, were all called “Palestinian.” The U.N. in 1947 called Palestine’s Jews and Arabs “the two Palestinian peoples,”
*** British Kept Jews Out, Foreign Conquerors Massacred Jews Who Were There: Local Arabs never ruled Palestine, including Jerusalem. In 1948, there were about a million Arabs and 600,000 Jews. That there weren’t more Jews is partly because the British, in mis-administering the Mandate, barred land purchase by Jews and blockaded Jews coming in – before, during and after the Holocaust. There was no counterpart British blockade against Arabs. But the British weren’t alone in diminishing Holy Land Jews. During those long centuries of exclusively foreign empire rule, the ruling foreign empires, not least Byzantines and Crusaders, massacred homeland Jews who were there.
*** Israel’s Population Indigenous Middle-East: Final proof that Israel is an indigenous Middle Eastern state is that the majority of its population today is directly descended from Israel-absorbed indigenously Middle-eastern Jews forced from Arab and other Muslim lands in the wake of the Arab invasion-started war in 1948.
Salient legal points:
San Remo and Mandate Recognized Historical Jewish Connection: The post-World War I (i.e., before the Holocaust) San Remo treaty and Palestine Mandate did not make a gift to the Jews of land to which they had no connection. On the contrary, they expressly recognized the Jewish people’s historical connection to where they sought to reconstitute the Jewish National Home, with close settlement of Jews on the land.
There HAS BEEN a “Two-State” Partition of Palestine Between Arabs and Jews: The League of Nations’ Palestine Mandate originally encompassed Palestine both west and east of the Jordan. Of that original Mandate, the 78% east of the Jordan River was excised as all-Arab Transjordan (today’s Jordan), leaving the 22% west of the River, coextensive with the historic land of Israel, for the Jewish National Home. There is neither historical justice nor military viability in further dividing that remaining 22% again between Arabs and Jews.
Publics in the West can at least grasp these straight-forward points: Biblical history happened; the Jews never left; Palestinian Arabs never ruled Palestine; Israel is the land of Israel’s next native state after Roman-destroyed Jewish Judaea; the British kept Jews from coming in, while Arabs came in, and foreign rulers had massacred homeland Jews in the land; Israel’s population today is majority indigenous Middle-east. San Remo and the Mandate recognized the historical Jewish connection; excision of Jordan from the Mandate effected a 78%/22% “Two-State Solution” partition of Palestine between Arabs and Jews.
I think one reason many Jews seem reluctant to make the We Never Left case is that they entertain doubts that it’s true. I doubted too, so I researched and wrote a little book (600+ footnotes) on it. The Jews were still there, half-a-millennium after Judaea’s destruction, when they fought in their own battalions alongside the invading Persians against the hated Romans’ Byzantine heirs. And the Jews were still there almost half-a-millennium after that when they were “the last to fall” (Crusaders’ words) in fighting the Crusaders at Jerusalem, and courageously (Crusaders’ word) held them off at Haifa for a month. The Jews lived in their four holy cities, and elsewhere, during the following six centuries of Mamluk and Turkish rule, again becoming Jerusalem’s majority before the Zionists’ came. The Jews Never Left? It’s true, with the significance Parkes put on it, and as at least Israeli premiers Begin, Sharon and Bibi maintained. Go read a book on it.