Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Did the Jews have the right to declare Israel as an independent state in 1948?

After the mess that the British Mandate left after realising the serious issues that had been caused by the unorganised mass migration of Jews into Palestine, Britain had officially handed over responsibility of the land to the United Nations to lead negotiations towards a two-state resolution comprising of an Arab state and a Jewish state.

The 1947 UN Partition Plan was then drafted. This plan would have been the only source of "potential" credibility for anyone to claim any legitimate bordering, but it was rejected by the Arabs.

The main reason for this was that it seemed totally unbalanced to provide the Jews with 56% of the land when they only comprised approximately 15% of the population. The following map describes the situation more accurately:

The Arab's disapproval was presented to the UN so that they could go back to the "drawing board" and re-draft another resolution. It was obvious why the Jews would agree to such an advantageous portion of land, but in the manner of speaking with regards to the interests of both parties, a better resolution was obviously required to be reconsidered.

As far as the Partition Plan was concerned, the land of Palestine was still considered disputed territory during the conflict because neither agreed on a final decision, and therefore neither was able to claim authority or to declare independence.

It would be interesting to know who in the Jewish sector actually felt they could claim the land independent to the Jews unilaterally, especially when it was still at large, in dispute.

That would most likely explain the reason why the Arabs were increasingly upset that it was carried out without a just and fair decision being finalised, especially when it was made without a bilateral agreement.

Some Israelis claim that since the land was "up for grabs", the Arabs should have taken their portion and declared their own independence as well, but if they had "officially" declared West Bank and Gaza as their own sovereign states, by implication that would mean that they had agreed to the Jews taking most of the land when their share was grossly unbalanced.

Almost 20 years later, Israel annexed the rest of the land regardless of any UN agreement, any bilateral negotiations, or any international recognition. Israelis now seemed to have forgotten that Arabs originally lived there before the State of Israel was declared and pretend that the history of the land began in 1948.

The real question therefore is, do the Palestinians have a right to exist on the land that was taken from them?

Why have their rights been forgotten?


  1. This is fantastic and it has a lot of factual material.

    Good work. This and other blogs.
    Mohammed Helal

  2. I don't see that you have a twitter option! You've got good stuff on your site and its not getting out there - put a twitter link and we can spread your blog to others. If you have a twitter account you should be tweeting your blogs whenever they come out.
    Keep up the great writing -
    Silma Ihram

  3. Thank you for your kind words Silma, I do in fact have a twitter account and regularly tweet any updates to the situation in the Arab world these days as well as any new blog posts I write here.

    You can follow me at @adelhelal if you like.

    You should also be able to see the social network buttons at the end of every post (i.e. post to twitter, facebook etc) which would help you spread the word on to all you know. The more awareness is raised of the realities of the situation in Palestine, the better.

  4. This article contains several factual inaccuracies, the chief of which is that map.

  5. How ironic you provide that link as your argument. There are several fallacies within your attempt to prove a fallacy that it is not even worth entertaining a response to the fabrications by going into it point by point.

    However, there is one point in the article that cannot possibly be overlooked because of the sheer ignorance of the point itself. It contains the most ridiculous map showing "Israel's land concession for peace 1967-2011". I have never seen a more out-of-context map in any discussion about the Middle East crisis. It truly shows how far people are willing to go to blatantly lie in order to justify the credibility of a Jewish State.

    When considering those maps, the following points need to be considered:
    - Israel *lost* the war in 1973 to Egypt and had to give Sinai back based on U.S. recommendations and the Camp David Accords. This is undisputed and was quite evident when Golda Meir had to resign following the war, after the infighting within the Knesset. 6th of October is also a public holiday for the Egyptians. Trying to pretend Israel "gave back the Sinai" is a lie. Israel lost the Sinai after it was invaded in 1967 (preemptively or not).

    - Israel *lost* the war in 2011 to Hezbollah and had to withdraw back to their Israeli "border". George Galloway describes that loss quite accurately in the following interview with SKY:

    That map isn't even a clever lie and completely discredits the entire article. It like to say "nice try", but that was a lame attempt to argue against the facts.