A Crash Course in the Real Facts
Israel's supporters in this country have been flooding the Internet with what they call A Crash Course in the Real Facts. It consists of 20 points, all misleading in the way they are written. A point by point rebuttal follows...
NATIONHOOD AND JERUSALEM
1. Israel became a nation in 1312 B.C.E., two thousand years before the rise of Islam.
The use of the word “nation” is ambiguous unless it is defined. It is confusing and misleading to use a modern notion and apply it to what happened in 1312 BC. This is how Black’s Law Dictionary defines the word "nation":“a people, or aggregation of men, existing in the form of an organized jural society, usually inhabiting a distinct portion of the earth, speaking the same language, using the same customs, possessing historic continuity, and distinguished from other like groups by their racial origin and characteristics, and generally, but not necessarily, living under the same government and sovereignty.”According to this definition Israel became a nation once it became an independent kingdom in 1011 BC (King David 1011-971 BC; and King Solomon 971-931 BC). In 931 BC, the kingdom was divided in two: Israel in the north, (capital Samaria) from 931 to 722 BC; and Judah in the south (capital Jerusalem) from 931 to 587 BC.
Samaria fell to Assyria in 722 BC and a large portion of the population was deported. This kingdom lasted for 209 years.
Jerusalem fell to the Babylonians in 587 BC and the cream of the population was deported. This kingdom lasted for 344 year.
The total number of years during which Israel was a "nation", even if we take into consideration the small Kingdom of Judah is 424 years. Outside this period Israel was more of a religion than a nation.
The Pittsburgh Platform of 1885 was issued by a group of reform rabbis. It stated: “we consider ourselves no longer a nation but a religious community" (see full text of Pittsburg Platform ).
Furthermore, a letter dated April 20, 1964, from Assistant Secretary of State Phillips Talbot to Rabbi Elmer Berger stated: the State Department "does not recognize a legal-political relationship based upon religious identification of American citizens ... it should be clear that the Department of State does not regard the Jewish people concept as a concept of international law" (see full text of the letter ).
Israel ceased to be a nation in 587 BC. It became a nation again in AD 1948. According to the definition given in Black’s Law Dictionary Jews who are not Israelis do not belong to the Israeli nation, they belong the Jewish faith like their coreligionists in Israel.
2. Arab refugees in Israel began identifying themselves as part of a Palestinian people in 1967, two decades after the establishment of the Modern State of Israel.
First, there are no Arab refugees in Israel, unless the writer has already annexed the Occupied Territories, Jordan, Syria and Lebanon to Israel.
The problem of the Palestinian refugees, that the writer calls “Arab” refugees to confuse the reader and avoid using the word Palestinian, started from the moment Israel was established in 1948, since some 700,000 Palestinians were expelled from their homes and their homeland and were not allowed to return. There is even a UN resolution that deal with the Palestinian refugees. It is General Assembly resolution 194 of 11 December 1948. The resolution deals explicitly, among other things, with the return of the Palestinian refugees to their homes.
Whether the "Arab" refugees began identifying themselves as part of a Palestinian people in 1967 or not is irrelevant. The fact is that there is today a universal aknowledgment that there is a Palestinian people, even Israel acknowledges this fact. To deny it won't solve the problem of Israel.
3. Since the Jewish conquest in 1272 B.C.E. the Jews have had dominion over the land for one thousand years with a continuous presence in the land for the past 3,300 years.
What is said in No. 1 above is relevant here. I detect a contradiction between what is said in 1 above and what is being said here. How can Israel be considered a nation in 1312 BC (see No. 1 above) when the "Jewish conquest" of the land of Canaan occurred later in 1272 BC?
There can be no nation without “inhabiting a distinct portion of the earth,” according to the definition. The continuous presence in the land, if we accept it for the sake of argument, was a presence of the Jews as individuals not as a nation. Following the first revolt, the Romans destroyed the Temple in AD 70. After the second revolt (AD 132-135), the Jews were either killed or sold into slavery and dispersed in the Roman Empire. Emperor Hadrian built a temple in honor of Jupiter on the site of the Jewish temple and issued a decree that prohibited under penalty of death the presence of the Jews in Jerusalem. The prohibition was lifted after the Muslim Arab conquest.
4. The only Arab dominion since the conquest in 635 C.E. lasted no more than 22 years.
In 638, not 635, Jerusalem and Palestine, were conquered by the Muslim Arabs. The Muslim rule lasted from 638 to 1099, from 1187 to 1229 and from 1239 to 1917 which is the year Jerusalem fell to General Allenby. In the interim periods, that is from 1099 to 1187 and from 1229 to 1239 the Crusaders established the Latin Kingdom of Jerusalem. The total number of years Muslims ruled Jerusalem and Palestine is 1,181 years not 22. The writer was off the mark by just 1,159 years. It should be mentioned that before the collapse of the Ottoman Empire after World War One, there was only one dominion, Muslim dominion. Speaking of Arab dominion is misleading.
5. For over 3,300 years, Jerusalem has been the Jewish capital. Jerusalem has never been the capital of any Arab or Muslim entity. Even when the Jordanians occupied Jerusalem, they never sought to make it their capital, and Arab leaders did not come to visit.
Jerusalem was a Jewish capital for no more than 424 years (see No. 1 above). In fact, Jerusalem was a meaningful capital only when the kingdom established by David was unified, that is from 1011 BC to 931 BC, or 80 years. The fact that Jerusalem was never a capital of any Arab or Muslim entity doesn't make it less of an Arab city. San Antonio has never been the capital of the United States. Does this mean that it is a Mexican city?
6. Jerusalem is mentioned over 700 times in Tanach, the Jewish Holy Scriptures. Jerusalem is not mentioned once in the Koran.
What does this suppose to mean? What is the conclusion that must be drawn from this statement? How about counting the number of times Jerusalem was mentioned in the New Testament?
7. King David founded the city of Jerusalem. Mohammed never came to Jerusalem.
The answer given in 6 above is relevant here. Again, what about Jesus? In their profession of faith, Christians say at every mass: “for our sake he (Jesus Christ) was crucified under Pontius Pilate, he suffered, died and was buried. On the third day he rose again in fulfillment of the Scriptures." These events didn't happen in Paris or New York but in Jerusalem.
8. Jews pray facing Jerusalem. Muslims pray with their backs toward Jerusalem.
Another incongruous statement. What are we supposed to make of it? The issue is not a religious one, as the author is trying to establish from points 5 to 8 . It is an issue of self-determination of a disenfranchised indigenous people. Also, the writer is presenting the issue as if it is an issue between the Jews and the Muslims ignoring the fact that the Arab Christians in the Middle East outnumber the Jews of Israel and the billion Christians in the world outnumber the 14 million Jews. The fact also is that Christianity has more holy sites in Jerusalem than Judaism and Islam combined. The Church of the Holy Sepulcher, the holiest place in Christianity, is in Jerusalem. If the issue is a religious one, then the Christians' claim is stronger than that of the Jews or the Muslims.
ARAB AND JEWISH REFUGEES
9. In 1948 the Arab refugees were encouraged to leave Israel by Arab leaders promising to purge the land of Jews. Sixty-eight percent left without ever seeing an Israeli soldier.
Simha Flapan in his book, The Birth of Israel: Myths and Realities, refers to the terrorists methods used by the Haganah, Irgun and LEHI to force the Palestinians out of their homeland. Flapan estimated that “84 percent (of the Palestinians) left in direct response to Israeli actions.” The Irish journalist, Erskine Childers, examined the American and the British radio-monitoring records for all 1948. In his article "The Other Exodus" that appeared in the (London) Spectator of May 12, 1961, he wrote the following: "There was not a single order, or appeal, or suggestion about evacuation from Palestine from any Arab radio station, inside or outside Palestine, in 1948. There is repeated monitored record of Arab appeals, even flat orders, to the civilians of Palestine to stay put." (see the full text ).
10. The Jewish refugees were forced to flee from Arab lands due to Arab brutality, persecution and pogroms.
The Jews were forced to flee the Arab countries not because of Arab brutality but because of Jewish brutality. Akiva Orr in his book Israel: Politics, Myths and Identity Crises wrote the following: “in 1948 Jews were not expelled from countries like Iraq, Morocco, Algeria, Tunisia and Libya, but induced to leave by Zionist emissaries from Israel who often used dirty tricks like throwing bombs into synagogues to create the impression of anti-Jewish persecution to stampede the Jews to Israel.” Once in Israel, some of the Iraqi Jews have even sued the Israeli government for damages. Also, Wilbur Crane Evenlan, a former senior officer in the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) wrote in his 1980 book Ropes of Sand: America's Failure in the Middle East:"In attempts to portray the Iraqis as ani-American and to terrorize the Jews, the Zionists planted bombs in the U.S. Information Service library and in synagogues. Soon leaflets began to appear urging Jews to flee to Israel. ... Although the Iraqi police later provided our embassy with evidence to show that the synagogue and library bombings as well as the anti-Jewish and anti-American leaflet campaings had been the work of an underground Zionist organization, most of the world believed reports that Arab terrorism had motivated the flight of the Iraqi Jews whom the Zionists had "rescued" really just in order to increase Israel's Jewish population." (pp. 48-49)For a first-hand account by an eyewitness, read Naeim Giladi's testimony in The Link of April-May 1998, published by the Americans for Middle East Understanding, Inc. Read The Jews of Iraq .
11. The number of Arab refugees who left Israel in 1948 is estimated to be around 630,000. The number of Jewish refugees from Arab lands is estimated to be the same.
Again the Palestinian refugees, (not Arab refugees) who left Israel in 1948 did not leave Palestine voluntarily but were driven out by the Jewish terrorist organizations (see 9 above). On the other hand, the Jewish “refugees” left voluntarily or induced to leave from their Arab homelands (see No. 10 above).
12. Arab refugees were INTENTIONALLY not absorbed or integrated into the Arab lands to which they fled, despite the vast Arab territory. Out of the 100,000,000 refugees since World War II, theirs is the only refugee group in the world that has never been absorbed or integrated into their own peoples' lands. Jewish refugees were completely absorbed into Israel, a country no larger than the state of New Jersey.
Should we show our appreciation to the writer for his concern about the Palestinian refugees who were “INTENTIONALY not absorbed or integrated into the Arab lands?” The writer is lamenting the fact that the Palestinians are “the only refugee group in the world that has never been absorbed or integrated into their own peoples’ lands.” Well, their land is Palestine. I am all for their return to their land. The writer wants the Palestinian refugees to be absorbed in the Arab lands. This is exactly how criminals think. They want to remove any trace of the crime they have committed; then they can delude themselves that they have a clear conscience.
THE ARAB-ISRAELI CONFLICT
13. The Arabs are represented by eight separate nations, not including the Palestinians. There is only one Jewish nation. The Arab nations initiated all five wars and lost. Israel defended itself each time and won.
If the writer knew how to count he would have found out that there are 20 Arab states not 8. Whether there are 20 or 70 Arab states, Palestinians are entitled to live in their homeland. As far as the "five wars" intitiated by the Arabs: The first war was the 1948 war and was triggered by the establishment of Israel. The 1956 war was started by Israel with the help of France and Great Britain. The 1967 war was started by Israel. The 1973 war was launched by Egypt and Syria to liberate their occupied territories, not more. The 1982 war against Lebanon was started by Israel.
14. The P.L.O.'s Charter still calls for the destruction of the State of Israel. Israel has given the Palestinians most of the West Bank land, autonomy under the Palestinian Authority, and has supplied them with weapons.
The PLO Charter has been amended and all clauses calling for Israel’s destruction were cancelled. On April 24, 1996, the Palestine National Council voted 504 to 54 to cancel those clauses. Contrary to what is stated, Israel has NOT given the Palestinians most of the West Bank. The West Bank was divided into three zones: Area A fully controlled by the Palestinian Authority consists of 12%; Area B jointly controlled by Israel (security control) and the Palestinian Authority (civilian control) consists of 26.8%; and Area C totally controlled by Israel consists of 61.2%. Who then controls most of the West Bank? (see map )
15. Under Jordanian rule, Jewish holy sites were desecrated and the Jews were denied access to places of worship. Under Israeli rule, all Muslim and Christian sites have been preserved and made accessible to people of all faiths.
Under Jordanian rule Israel, the Jewish state, was officially at war with Jordan. Under the Israeli rule, Muslim and Christian Palestinians from the occupied territories are today denied access to places of worship. Those Muslims and Christians who have access to places of worship are Israeli citizens. Desecration of holy sites is done by fanatics. There is no shortage of them among Muslims, Christians and Jews.
THE U.N. RECORD ON ISRAEL AND THE ARABS
16. Of the 175 Security Council resolutions passed before 1990, 97 were directed against Israel.
That is because Israel was at fault 97 times.
17. Of the 690 General Assembly resolutions voted on before 1990, 429 were directed against Israel.
That is because Israel was at fault 429 times.
18. The U.N was silent while 58 Jerusalem Synagogues were destroyed by the Jordanians.
Why is it that Israel did not complain to the U.N.?
19. The U.N. was silent while the Jordanians systematically desecrated the ancient Jewish cemetery on the Mount of Olives.
The U.N. is not a super government. Member states must take the initiative to complain or ask for a Security Council meeting to take up their complaints.
20. The U.N. was silent while the Jordanians enforced an apartheid-like policy of preventing Jews from visiting the Temple Mount and the Western Wall.
See answer given in No. 19.
These are incredible times. We have to ask what our role should be. What will we tell our grandchildren we did when there was a turning point in Jewish destiny, an opportunity to make a difference?
These are indeed incredible times. We should tell our grandchildren the truth.
For those of you who were kind and interested enough to read, the preceding, let me add two more items:
a) Israel is the ONLY MEMBER OF THE UN THAT IS NOT PERMITTED MEMBERSHIP ON THE SECURITY COUNCIL
For Israel to be a member of the Security Council it has to belong to one of the five following groups: Asian states, African states, Latin American and the Caribbean states, Eastern European states, and Western Europe and other states. If no one group wants to accept Israel as a member then there must be something wrong with Israel.
b) Israel has NEVER BEEN PERMITTED MEMBERSHIP IN THE INTERNATIONAL RED CROSS
As far as I know, it is because Israel insists on using the Star of David as en emblem. The Red Cross accepted the Crescent next to the Cross because there are many Muslim states in the world. How many Jewish states are there in the world?
Send this to 20 other people you know and ask them to send it to twenty others, Jews and non-Jews, it doesn't really matter. The truth and the cause of peace are universal values we all share, and everyone must know.
By all means. Don't just send this to 20 other people but to the whole world, so that the whole world will learn the truth and the whole world will also learn how the truth is being distorted and the facts are being manipulated by the author of this Crash Course in the Real Facts.
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