From: Ismail Zayid

To: Guardian Weekly

Sent: Friday, June 23, 2006 9:35 PM

Subject: Israeli expansionism.


June 23, 2006


The Editor,

The Guardian Weekly.


Dear Editor:


Stewart Patrick, in his letter, June 16, states : " In 1948, 1956, 1967 and 1973 Israel's Arab Neighbours tried to wipe it out." This statement is utterly false and stands in contradiction with historic facts.


Before a single Arab army soldier entered Palestine, on May 15, 1948, after withdrawal of British troops from Palestine, the Zionist forces had expelled, or forced to flee, over 300.000 Palestinians from their homes and occupied many cities and towns, like Jaffa and Acre, which were apportioned for the Arab state in Palestine, by the UN General Assembly resolution #181, of Nov. 29,1947. The state of Israel which was created on May 14, 1948, refused to define its borders, and its first prime minister, David Ben Gurion, stated: "We are creating a new state in the western part of our country." He stated in his diaries, after having conquered 78% of Palestine, "The status quo will not do.We have created a dynamic state bent upon expansion." Accordingly, Israel's expansionist programme brought about a series of wars of aggression against its neighbours, Egypt, Syria, Palestine and Lebanon.


In 1956, Israel invaded Egypt's Sinai, in collusion with Britain and France, in the infamous Suez War.


In June 1967, Israel planned and effected its war of aggression against Egypt, Syria and the Palestinian West Bank. This war is regularly described by Israel's apologists as a pre-emptive war against Egypt's president Nasser plans to attack and destroy Israel. This claim is utterly false and is best demolished by Israel's leaders at the time, in their own statements:


Yitzhak Rabin, chief of staff of the Israeli army at the time, stated :" I do not think Nasser wanted war. The two divisions he sent to the Sinai would not have been sufficient to launch an offensive war. He knew it and we knew it." {Le Monde, Feb.28,1968}.


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].


Modechai 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, 14 April 1972,  and quoted in Le Monde,  3 June 1972].


Menachem Begin, a cabinet minister in June 1967, stated, while prime minister, addressing Israel's National Defence College, on Aug.8,1982, : " In June 1967, we again had a choice. The Egyptian army concentrations in the Sinai did not prove Nasser was really about to attack us. We must be honest with our selves. We decided to attack him" [The N.Y.Times, Aug.21,1982].


In 1973, Egypt and Syria attempted to regain their own territories, illegally occupied since June 1967.


In 1978 and 1982, Israel waged wars of aggression against Lebanon, bringing about the death of thousand of innocent Lebanese and Palestinians.


It is time that the international community should apply pressure on Israel to bring to an end its illegal occupation of Palestinian and Syrian territory, that has been allowed to stand for 39 years, in defiance of international law and repeated Security Council resolutions.




[Dr.] Ismail Zayid