Canada Palestine Association

PO Box 1085

Halifax, NS B3J 2X1

May 11, 1999

The Editor, The Halifax Herald

Dear Editor:

Mr. Victor Goldberg (May 11, letter) is indulging in the standard Israeli and Zionist practice of re-writing history. He is quite right,

I do know that historians, renowned world historians as well as Israeli historians, have documented conclusively a detailed account of how

Zionist and Israeli leaders carefully planned and effected the cleansing of Palestine of its indigenous people, through massacres, physical

expulsion and intimidation. If Mr. Goldberg is not satisfied with the testimony of the renowned world historian, Professor Arnold Toynbee,

perhaps it would be relevant to catalogue for him the statements and actions of Israel's leaders and historians.

Theodor Herzl, the founding father of the Zionist movement, wrote in his diaries in 1896: "We must expropriate gently the private property...We

shall try to spirit the penniless population across the border... Such process shall be carried out gently and circumspectly". Joseph Weitz,

the director of the Jewish National Land Fund wrote on Dec. 19, 1940: "It must be clear that there is no place for both peoples in the

country... There is no other way but to transfer the Arabs from here to the neighbouring countries. Transfer all of them, not one village or

tribe should remain". Their followers abandoned the gentleness. The massacre of Deir Yassin

on April 9, 1948 was only the first example. Simha Flapan, the Israeli historian, described the massacre: "For the entire day of April 9,

1948, Irgun and LEHI soldiers carried out the slaughter in a cold and

premeditated fashion. The attackers lined men, women and children against the wall and shot them." The ruthlessness of the attack on Deir Yassin shocked Jewish

and world opinion alike, drove fear and panic into the Arab population and led to the flight of unarmed civilians from

their homes all over the country" (Simha Flapan, The Birth of Israel). "By 1948, the Jew was not only to defend himself but to commit massive

atrocities as well, indeed according to the former director of the Israeli army archives 'in almost every Arab village occupied by us,

during the War of Independence, acts were committed which are defined as war crimes, such as murders, massacres and rapes". Uri Milstein, the

authoritative military historian of the 1948 war maintained that 'every skirmish ended in a massacre of Arabs'. (Norman Finkelstein, Image and

Reality of the Israel-Palestine conflict). Yitzhak Rabin, later Prime Minister of Israel, wrote in his diaries,

when the Israeli forces occupied Lydda and Ramleh on July 10, 1948 how they decided to deal with the 60,000 population of these two towns: "We

walked outside, Ben Gurion accompanying us. (Yigal) Allon repeated his question: 'what is to be done with the population?' B.G. (Ben Gurion)

waved his hand in a gesture which said 'Drive them out'...'The population of Lod (Lydda) did not leave willingly. There was no way of

avoiding the use of force, and warning shots in order to make the inhabitants march the 10 to 15 miles to the point where they met up with

the (Arab) Legion". (New York Times, 23 Oct 1979). It was on that day that I saw in my village of Beit Nuba, the hordes of

men, women and children running for their lives, where mothers lost their children, in this massive ruthless expulsion. It might be

worthwhile to note, by digression, that Beit Nuba was demolished in June 1967, on the orders of none other than the same Mr. Rabin.

The Zionist fabrication, reproduced by Mr. Goldberg, that the Palestinian refugees left on orders broadcast by their leaders, has been

exposed, for the lie that it is, by the Irish journalist Erskine Childers as well as Israeli historian Tom Segev. Childers examined all

American and British monitoring records of all Middle East broadcasts and reported: "There was not a single order of appeal or suggestion

about evacuation from any Arab radio, inside or outside Palestine in 1948. There is repeated monitored record of Arab appeals, even flat

orders, to the civilians to stay put" (The Spectator, May 12, 1961). Nathan Chofshi the well-known Israeli writer and thinker perhaps had Mr.

Goldberg, as well as Rabbi Kaplan, in mind when he wrote: "If Rabbi Kaplan really wanted to know what happened, we old

settlers in Palestine who witnessed the flight could tell him how and in what manner we, Jews, forced the Arabs to leave

their cities and villages. We came and turned the native Arabs into tragic refugees. And we still dare to slander and

malign them, to besmirch their name. Instead of being ashamed of what we did and of trying to undo some of the evil we

committed by helping these unfortunate refugees, we justify our terrible acts and even attempt to glorify them."

Finally, dare I suggest that the message of this honourable thinker should be heeded?

Yours sincerely,

Ismail Zayid, MD