23 June 2002

History 101

When I went to hear Michael Tarazi, the Legal Advisor of the Palestine Liberation Organization, I was hoping to hear some deep insightful thoughts about the Middle East situation but all I got was a rewrite of history.

Untruth by Michael Tarazi. A valid question posed by one of the audience members asked about the boundries of “Historical Palestine.” The audience member mentioned that “Historical Palestine” according to the Palestine Mandate, the area under British control after World War I, included both what are now the countries of Israel and Jordan. Mr. Tarazi was quick to respond. How “nice” of an Israeli to tell him (Mr. Tarazi) what his homeland borders are.

How cute of Mr. Tarazi, but not dealing with the issue at hand. If the Palestinians were truely concerned about peace, knowing that Jordan is also the country of Palestine would help. Also knowing that 80% of Jordans citizens are also Palestinians would help. Why not a two state solution? Israel would be a Jewish State. Jordan would be a Palestinian State. But no, the Palestinians only deal with the reality in their collective head. Only Israel is Palestine.

Let’s deal with another piece of neglected history. Who owned the “occupied territory” of the West Bank prior to the 1967 War in which Israel won that territory. Jordan did. If the Palestinians are concerned about only the West Bank and not wanted to destroy the Jews wholesale and push them into the Mediterranean Sea, then why did they go to war in 1967? They had control of the entire West Bank.

The Palestinians argue that it’s the creation of Israel as a State that is a problem for them. They have no problem with Jews themselves. So let’s go way back - before the “occupation”, before even the creation of the Jewish State. Throughout the years 1936-1939 there were hundreds of Jews murdered by their Arab neighbors. Let’s go even further back to the 1929 massacre of 29 Jewish Yeshiva students in Hebron. What happened there? There was no State. There was no “occupation.”

The simple fact is that the Palestinian People are not interested in the facts of History. It doesn’t fit their reality. The reality they are interested in is a reality in which Jews don’t exist.

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