‘Transfer’ (Ethnic Cleansing) : Zionist Quotes


 
 
 
 
BASED On Declassified Israeli Documents & Personal Diaries

Since the inception of Zionism, its leaders have been keen on creating a "Jewish State" based on a "Jewish majority" by mass immigration of Jews to Palestine, primarily European Jews fleeing from anti-Semitic Tsarist Russia and Nazi Germany. When a "Jewish majority" was impossible to achieve, based on Jewish immigration and natural growth, Zionist leaders (such as Ben Gurion, Moshe Sharett, Ze’ev Jabotinsky, and Chaim Weizmann) concluded that "population transfer" was the only solution to what they referred to as the "Arab Problem."

It must be emphasized that the concept of "population transfer" was embraced by all shades of opinion in the Zionist movement, from the Revisionist Right to the Labor Left, including the "Moderate" Moshe Sharett and the socialist Arthur Ruppin. Most, if not all, of the below quotes have been researched by Israeli and Jewish historians, who extracted them from declassified Israeli and Zionist archives. For your convenience, each quote has been referenced (along with the page number), and grouped by: the Zionist Leader to whom the quotes is attributed, and by subject matter.

The concept of "transferring" European Jews to Palestine and "transferring" the Palestinian people out is central to Zionism. Ben-Gurion, the 1st Israeli Prime Minister, eloquently articulated this essential Zionist pillar, he stated in 1944:

"Zionism is a TRANSFER of the Jews. Regarding the TRANSFER of the [Palestinian] Arabs this is much easier than any other TRANSFER. There are Arab states in the vicinity . . . . and it is clear that if the [Palestinian] Arabs are removed [to these states] this will improve their condition and not the contrary." (Expulsion Of The Palestinians, p. 159)

When a "Jewish majority" was impossible to achieve based on Jewish immigration and natural growth, Zionists had concluded that forcible "population transfer" (Ethnic Cleansing) was the only solution to what they referred to as the "Arab Problem." To excuse the "Jewish state" from any WAR CRIMES perpetrated against the Palestinian people (specially the ones committed during the 1948 war), Zionists have concocted a myth that the Palestinian people had willingly left their homes, farms, and businesses, and as a result they have forfeited their right to return.

Related Links

Famous Ethnic Cleansing Quotes

David Ben-Gurion

On July 12, 1937, Ben-Gurion wrote in his diary explaining the benefits of the compulsory population transfer (which was proposed in British Peel Commission):

"The compulsory transfer of the [Palestinian] Arabs from the valleys of the proposed Jewish state could give us something which we never had, even when we stood on our own during the days of the first and second Temples. . . We are given an opportunity which we never dared to dream of in our wildest imaginings. This is MORE than a state, government and sovereignty—-this is national consolidation in a free homeland." (Righteous Victims, p. 142)

Similarly on August 7, 1937 he also stated to the Zionist Assembly during their debate of the Peel Commission:

". . . In many parts of the country new settlement will not be possible without transferring the [Palestinian] Arab fellahin. . . it is important that this plan comes from the [British Peel] Commission and not from us. . . . Jewish power, which grows steadily, will also increase our possibilities to carry out the transfer on a large scale. You must remember, that this system embodies an important humane and Zionist idea, to transfer parts of a people to their country and to settle empty lands. We believe that this action will also bring us closer to an agreement with the Arabs." (Righteous Victims, p. 143)

On the same subject, Ben-Gurion wrote in 1937:

"With compulsory transfer we [would] have a vast area [for settlement] …. I support compulsory transfer. I don’t see anything immoral in it." (Righteous Victims, p. 144)

And in 1938, he also wrote:

"With compulsory transfer we [would] have vast areas …. I support compulsory [population] transfer. I do not see anything immoral in it. But compulsory transfer could only be carried out by England …. Had its implementation been dependent merely on our proposal I would have proposed; but this would be dangerous to propose when the British government has disassociated itself from compulsory transfer. …. But this question should not be removed from the agenda because it is central question. There are two issues here : 1) sovereignty and 2) the removal of a certain number of Arabs, and we must insist on both of them." (Expulsion Of The Palestinians, 117)

On July 30, 1937 Yosef Bankover, a founding member and leader of Kibbutz Hameuhad movement and a member of Haganah’s regional command of the coastal and central districts, stated that Ben-Gurion would accept the proposed Peel Commission partition plan under two conditions: 1) unlimited Jewish immigration 2) Compulsory population transfer for Palestinians. He stated that :

"Ben-Gurion said yesterday that he was prepared to accept the [Peel partition] proposal of the Royal commission but on two conditions: [Jewish] sovereignty and compulsory transfer ….. As for the compulsory transfer– as a member of Kibbutz Ramat Hakovsh [founded in 1932 in central Palestine] I would be very pleased if it would be possible to be rid of the pleasant neighborliness of the people of Miski, Tirah, and Qalqilyah." (Expulsion Of The Palestinians, p. 70)

And regarding the Peel Commission, on June 9, 1937 he also stated:

"In my opinion we must insist on the Peel Commission proposal, which sees in the transfer the only solution to this problem. And I have now to say that it is worthwhile that the Jewish people should bear the greatest material sacrifices in order to ensure the success of transfer." (Expulsion Of The Palestinians, p. 70)

Ben-Gurion explained how compulsory population transfer could be implemented. He said in 1937:

"…. because we will not be able to countenance large uninhabited areas absorb tens of thousands of Jews remaining empty …. And if we have to use force we shall use it without hesitation — but only if we have no choice. We do not want and do not need to expel Arabs and take their places. Our whole desire is based on the assumption — which has been collaborated in the course of all our activity in the country — that there is enough room for us and the Arabs in the country and that if we have to use force – not in order to dispossess the Arabs from the Negev or Transjordan but in order to assure ourselves of the right, which is our due to settle there- then we have the force." (Righteous Victims, p. 142)

Ben-Gurion became obsessed about "transferring" the Palestinian Arabs out of Palestine, and he started to contemplate the mechanics and potential problems that could arise if "transfer" to be implemented. Ben-Gurion contemplated the "Arab Question" in "Eretz Yisrael" and wrote:

"We have to examine, first, if this transfer is practical, and secondly, if it is necessary. It is impossible to imagine general evacuation without compulsion, and brutal compulsion, There are of course sections of the non-Jewish population of the Land of Israel which will not resist transfer under adequate conditions to certain neighboring countries, such as the Druze, a number of Bedouin tribes in the Jordan Valley and the south, the Circassians and perhaps even the Metwalis [the Sh’ite of the Galilee]. But it would be very difficult to bring about resettlement of other sections of the [Palestinian] Arab populations such as the fellahin and the urban populations in neighboring Arab countries by transferring them voluntarily, whatever economic inducements are offered to them." (Expulsion Of The Palestinians. 129)

Similarly, he also added

"The possibility of large-scale transfer of a population by force was demonstrated, when the Greeks and the Turks were transferred [after WW I]. In the present war [referring to WW II] the idea of transferring a population is gaining more sympathy as a practical and the most secure means of solving the dangerous and painful problem of national minorities. The war has already brought the resettlement of many people eastern and southern Europe, and in the plans for the postwar settlements the idea of a large-scale population transfer in central, eastern, and southern Europe increasingly occupies a respectable place." (Expulsion Of The Palestinians. 129)

On December 19, 1947, Ben-Gurion advised the Haganah on the rules of engagement with the Palestinian population. He stated:

"we adopt the system of aggressive defense; with every Arab attack we must respond with a decisive blow: the destruction of the place or the expulsion of the residents along with the seizure of the place." (Expulsion Of The Palestinians, p. 176-177 and Israel: A History, p. 156)

Ben-Gurion was happy and sad when the U.N. voted to Partition Palestine into two states, Palestinian and Jewish. He was happy because "finally" Jews could have a "country" of their own. On the other hand, he was sad because they have "lost" almost half of Palestine, and because they would have to contend with a sizable Palestinian minority, well over 45% of the total population. In the following few quotes, you will see how he also stated that a "Jewish state" cannot survive being 60% Jewish; implying that something aught to be done to remedy the so called "Arab demographic problem". He stated on November 30, 1947:

"In my heart, there was joy mixed with sadness: joy that the nations at last acknowledged that we are a nation with a state, and sadness that we lost half of the country, Judea and Samaria, and , in addition, that we [would] have [in our state] 400,000 [Palestinian] Arabs." (Righteous Victims, p. 190)

While addressing the Central Committee of the Histadrut on December 30, 1947, Ben-Gurion stated:

"In the area allocated to the Jewish State there are not more than 520,000 Jews and about 350,000 non-Jews, mostly Arabs. Together with the Jews of Jerusalem, the total population of the Jewish State at the time of its establishment, will be about one million, including almost 40% non-Jews. such a [population] composition does not provide a stable basis for a Jewish State. This [demographic] fact must be viewed in all its clarity and acuteness. With such a [population] composition, there cannot even be absolute certainty that control will remain in the hands of the Jewish majority …. There can be no stable and strong Jewish state so long as it has a Jewish majority of only 60%." (Expulsion Of The Palestinians, p. 176)

According to Sefer Toldot Ha-Haganah, the official history of the Haganah, it clearly stated how Palestinian villages and population should be dealt with. It stated:

"[Palestinian Arab] villages inside the Jewish state that resist ‘should be destroyed …. and their inhabitants expelled beyond the borders of the Jewish state.’ Meanwhile, ‘Palestinian residents of the urban quarters which dominate access to or egress from towns should be expelled beyond the borders of the Jewish state in the event of their resistance.’ " (Expulsion Of The Palestinians, p. 178)

Ben-Gurion was enchanted that Jerusalem’s neighboring Palestinian communities had been emptied. He stated to the Mapai Council on February 8, 1948:

"From your entry into Jerusalem, through Lifta, Romema [East Jerusalem Palestinian neighborhood]. . . there are no [Palestinian] Arab. One hundred percent Jews. Since Jerusalem was destroyed by the Romans, it has not been Jewish as it is now. In many [Palestinian] Arab neighborhoods in the west one sees not a single [Palestinian] Arab. I do not assume that this will change. . . . What had happened in Jerusalem. . . . is likely to happen in many parts of the country. . . in the six, eight, or ten months of the campaign there will certainly be great changes in the composition of the population in the country." (Expulsion Of The Palestinians, p. 180-181)

In a speech addressing the Zionist Action Committee on April 6, 1948, Ben-Gurion clearly stated that war could be used as an instrument to solve the so called "Arab demographic problem". He stated:

"We will not be able to win the war if we do not, during the war, populate upper and lower, eastern and western Galilee, the Negev and Jerusalem area, even if only in an artificial way, in a military way. . . . I believe that war will also bring in its wake a great change in the distribution of [Palestinian] Arab population." (Benny Morris, p. 181 & Expulsion Of The Palestinians, p. 181)

Ben-Gurion clearly never believed in static borders, but dynamic ones as described in the Bible. He stated during a discussion with his aides:

"Before the founding of the state, on the eve of its creation, our main interests was self-defense. To a large extent, the creation of the state was an act of self-defense. . . . Many think that we’re still at the same stage. But now the issue at hand is conquest, not self-defense. As for setting the borders— it’s an open-ended matter. In the Bible as well as in our history, there all kinds of definitions of the country’s borders, so there’s no real limit. Bo border is absolute. If it’s a desert— it could just as well be the other side. If it’s sea, it could also be across the sea. The world has always been this way. Only the terms have changed. If they should find a way of reaching other stars, well then, perhaps the whole earth will no longer suffice." (1949, The First Israelis, p. 6)

It has been customary among all Zionists leaders to use the Bible to justify perpetrating WAR CRIMES. Regardless of the methods used to build the "Jewish state", the quote above is a classical example how the Bible is used to achieve political objectives.

During the same visit to Haifa, Ben-Gurion was told that Abba Khoushi, a labor leader and an official in the Haifa’s City Hall, was trying to persuade Palestinians city to stay. Ben-Gurion reportedly said:

"Doesn’t he have anything more important to do?" (Benny Morris, p. 328)

On June 16, 1948, there were calls by members of the MAPAM party for the return of Jaffa‘s "peace minded" Palestinian refugees, and in response, Ben-Gurion stated during a Cabinet meeting:

"I do not accept the version [i.e. policy] that [we] should encourage their return. . . I believe we should prevent their return . . . We must settle Jaffa, Jaffa will become a Jewish city. . . . The return of [Palestinian] Arabs to Jaffa [would be] not just foolish." If the [Palestinian] Arabs were allowed to return, to Jaffa and elsewhere, " and the war is renewed, our chances of ending the war as we wish to end it will be reduced. . . . Meanwhile, we must prevent at all costs their return," he said, and, leaving no doubt in the ministers’ minds about his views on the ultimate fate of the [Palestinian] refugees, he added: "I will be for them not returning after the war." (Benny Morris, p. 141 & 1949, The First Israelis, p. 75)

Similarly, Moshe Sharett agreed with Ben-Gurion on rejecting Palestinian refugees return, and stated during the same Cabinet meeting:

"Can we imagine a return to the status quo ante?" He asked. It was inconceivable. Rather, the government should now perused the Yishuv (Palestinian Jews before 1948) of "the enormous importance of this [demographic] change in terms of the solidity of the state structure and [of] the solution of crucial social and political problems." Israel should be ready to pay compensation for the abandoned land but "they will not return. [That] is out policy. They are not returning." (Benny Morris, p. 141)

Although an important document dating July 16, 1948 is still classified by the Israeli censorship, there is enough information to indicate the link in Ben-Gurion‘s mind between the concept of "transfer" and war. It was at the time that Ben-Gurion stated that he:

"was not surprised" at the Arab exodus and that "we should prevent Arab return at any cost." He also cited ones again the Turkish-Greek war crime as an "example" in which the Turks "expelled the Greeks from Anatolia." (Expulsion Of The Palestinians, p. 191-192)

It is extremely ironic to point out that this is the SECOND time in history when Turks are cited as an "example" to justify perpetrating WAR CRIMES. The first was used by the earliest Zionist leaders (such as Chaim Weizmann, Ben-Gurion, and Moshe Sharett), and the second was used by Hitler when he cited the Turkish genocide of 1.5 million Armenians (during WW I) as a precedent for the holocaust, click here if you wish to learn more about the Armenian genocide.

When Ezra Danin, a Cabinet member, proposed installing a puppet Palestinian Government in the Triangle area (northwest of the occupied West Bank), Ben-Gurion had impatiently declared on October 21, 1948 that Palestinians in Israel were good for one thing, running away. He said:

"The Arabs of the land of Israel [ Palestinians] have only one function left to them — to run away." (Benny Morris, p. 218)

With no emotions, ten days later, while Ben-Gurion was on a tour of the Galilee, he describes Palestinian exodus in his dairy as follows:

"and many more still will flee." (Benny Morris, p. 218)

On September 26, 1948, he proposed the Israeli provisional government that Israel should attack the West Bank. Again, he had reiterated how a war could be used as an instrument to "transfer" population, and he used Lydda‘s and Ramla‘s occupation and the subsequent expulsion of their population as a precedent. According to a detail plan of the operation recorded in his diary, Israeli forces would take:

"Bethlehem, and Hebron, where there are about a hundred thousand [Palestinian] Arabs. I assume that most of the Arabs of Jerusalem, Bethlehem, and Hebron would flee, like the [Palestinian] Arabs of Lydda, Jaffa, Tiberias, and Safad, and we will control the whole breadth of the country up to the Jordan." In another entry he writes: "It is not impossible . . . that we will be able to conquer the way to the Negev, Eilat, and the Dead Sea, and to secure the Negev for ourselves; also to broaden the corridor to Jerusalem, from north to south; to liberate the rest of Jerusalem and to take the Old City; to seize all of central and western Galilee and to expand the borders of the state in all directions" (emphasis added). (Simha Flapan, p. 48 & 1949, The First Israelis, p. 14)

Ironically, when Chaim Laskov proposed the occupation of most of the West Bank in July 1958, Ben-Gurion objected because in his opinion Palestinians have learned that lesson already, simply they won’t run away. He wrote in his diary:

"This time the [Palestinian] Arabs on the West Bank will not run away!," meaning if the Palestinians would flee as a result of war (as what already happened during the 1948 war), he would not mind the occupation and annexation of the West Bank. (Iron Wall, p. 200)

During a meeting for the Mapai party center on July 24, 1948, Ben-Gurion clearly stated his thoughts and attitude towards the Palestinian Arabs, especially in the light of their behavior and flight during the war. He said:

"Meanwhile, [a return of Palestinian refugees] is out of the question until we sit together beside a [peace conference] table . . . and they will respect us to the degree that we respect them and I doubt whether they deserve respect as we do. Because, nevertheless, we did not flee en mass, [And] so far no Arab Einstein has risen and [they] have not created what we have built in this country and [they] have not fought as we are fighting . . . we are dealing here with a collective murderer." (Benny Morris, p. 331)

So in Ben-Gurion‘s opinion, the absence of an Arab Einstein, the fleeing of Palestinian Arabs during war, and not fighting are good reasons for not respecting Palestinians’ rights? It also could be argued that the Christen Crusaders, in comparison to Jewish Zionism, had said similar things about Muslims and Arabs as well. However, after 200 years of Crusaders’ occupation, ethnic cleansing, and genocide, Arabs produced their versions of Einstein (in Cordoba, Seville, Cairo, Toledo, Baghdad, … etc.), and fought well under Saladin‘s command. Along with the subsequent Mongol and Tatar invasions, the Crusade genocide became a sad footnote in the human history. If history shall be used as an example, then it’s too early to ride off Arabs only after five decades of ethnic cleansing and dispossession.

 

Read more:

http://www.palestineremembered.com/Acre/Famous-Zionist-Quotes/Story694.html

 

 

 

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