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Date: Sun, 10 Aug 2008 12:08:35 -0300
From: Ismail Zayid <izayid@eastlink.ca>
Subject: Fw: letter - "In their own words". The Chronicle Herald. Aug.7, 2008
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The Chronicle-Herald, Thu 7 August 2008, Page A10

In their own words

Mike Forsythe (Aug. 2 letter) describes the statements by the two former Israeli prime ministers, Yitzhak Rabin and Menachem Begin, as to the June 1967 war, (quoted in my letter July 26), as bogus and trash.

These statements are published in authoritative international journals, Le Monde and New York Times and are confirmed by many authorities. They are quoted in the recent book Witness in
Palestine: A Jewish American Woman in the Occupied Territories, p 385.

Furthermore, the essence of the statements by Rabin and Begin is supported by other cabinet ministers in
Israel at the time.

Prime Minister Levi Eshkol stated: "The Egyptian layout in the Sinai and the general military build-up there testified to a military defensive Egyptian set-up, south of
Israel" (Israeli daily Yediot Ahronot, Oct. 18, 1967).

Mordechai Bentov, an Israeli cabinet minister at the time, stated: "All this story about the danger of extermination (of Israel in June 1967) has been a complete invention and has been blown up a posteriori to justify the annexation of Arab territory" (Al Hamishmar, April 14, 1972, and quoted in Le Monde, June 3, 1972).

As to the attack on the Syrian Golan Heights,
Moshe Dayan, Israelís Minister of Defence at the time, tells us the facts as reported by Serge Schmemann (The N.Y. Times, May 11, 1997): "He (Moshe Dayan) said he regretted not having stuck to his initial opposition to storming the Golan Heights. There really was no pressing reason to do so, because many of the firefights with the Syrians were deliberately provoked by Israel, and the kibbutz residents who pressed the Government to take the Golan Heights did so less for security than for the farmland Ö.

"I know how at least 80 per cent of the clashes were started. We would send a tractor to plow some area, in the demilitarized area, and knew in advance that the Syrians would start to shoot. If they didnít shoot, we would tell the tractor to advance further, until in the end the Syrians would get annoyed and shoot. And then we would use artillery and later the air force also, and that is how it was."

I believe the readers of The Chronicle Herald deserve to know the facts as they are.

Ismail Zayid, Halifax