From: Ismail Zayid
To: The Halifax Herald
Sent: Wednesday, November 01, 2000 10:56 PM

Subject: Re-writing History.

The Editor,
The Halifax Herald
Halifax, NS.

1 Nov., 2000

Dear Editor:

Mr R. Bednarik’s letter ["Other side to story", Oct. 30] is another classic example of Zionist re-writing of the history of the Palestine-Israel conflict.

He states: "Jews and the Palestinian people had the option to live together in peace and cooperation in the newly formed Israel". That is not exactly what the Zionist and Israeli leaders planned and effected. Theodor Herzl, the founder of the Zionist movement stated, in 1897 before the First World Zionist Congress: "We shall try to spirit the penniless [Arab] population [out of Palestine] across the border by procuring employment for it in the transit countries, while denying it any employment in our own country".

Mr. Ben Gurion, Israel’s first prime minister, confided in a letter to his son, in 1939, that when the Jewish state comes into being,"We will expel the Arabs and take their places". While visiting the newly conquered Nazareth in July 1948, Ben Gurion exclaimed, when he saw some remaining Arabs :" Why are there so many Arabs here? Why didn’t you expel them". Joseph Weitz, who was the Jewish Agency chief representative, as reported in the Sep. 29, 1967 issue of Davar, that he and other Zionist leaders concluded, in 1940, that there was "no room for both peoples together" It is required "to transfer the Arabs from here to the neighbouring countries. To transfer all of them". This was the plan and it was almost totally effected.

Mr. Bednarik refers to Arab military attempts. Long before a single Arab army soldier entered Palestine, on May 15, 1948, and before the British forces withdrew from Palestine, on that date, the Zionist forces expelled 350,000 Palestinians from their homes using repeated massacres and intimidation, and occupied many cities, like Jaffa and Acre, as well as many towns and villages, which were assigned by the U.N. Partition scheme to the Arab state.

He speaks of Palestinians, under occupation, who "are dependent on Israel for economic success". This is laughable if it was not so tragic. The Palestinians, under occupation, have been systematically tortured and dehumanised. Their land has been expropriated, for the creation of illegal settlements, and thousands of their homes demolished. Total villages, including my own village of Beit Nuba, have been erased from the face of the earth. All this is carried out in violation of the Fourth Geneva Convention and condemned by Amnesty International, the U.N. Human Rights Commission and Israel’s own human rights groups, including B"Tselem and The Israeli League for Civil and Human Rights. This is what the Palestinians are resisting today, and it is a recognised right for all peoples, including the Palestinian people, to resist foreign occupation.

He speaks of Mr. Barak’s efforts at peace. If Israel and Mr. Barak truly want peace, they simply have to withdraw completely from the illegally occupied territories of the West Bank, Gaza and East Jerusalem, which have been under the most oppressive illegal occupation since 1967, and in continuing defiance of international law and Security Council resolutions. Such compliance requires no negotiation or bargaining. That was the practice that was adopted against Iraq’s illegal occupation of Kuwait.

Yours sincerely

Ismail Zayid,M.D.