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Debunking Palestinian Myths

“Breaking Zionist Myths”

Last week, I published my first article in The Times of Israel. I’ve been advocating about this conflict for a long time now, debating, reading, and learning.
I wrote that article months ago but only recently decided it would be a good idea to publish it.

It turned out to be a great decision; somehow it became really popular, and I received a lot of comments, both good and bad. I responded to all of them. If you still have any questions, you can ask me on my Instagram or via email.

A few days ago, I was scrolling through Instagram, like a normal teenager.
I saw in my recommendations a post from 2 pages called “Zochrot” and “Shoresh”.

The bio of one of the pages: “From Nakba to Return: We act to promote Israeli Jewish society’s acknowledgment of and accountability for the ongoing injustice of the Nakba.”

Honestly, this is the most absurd and amusing bio I’ve ever read. The level of ignorance is astounding. However, I can understand where they’re coming from, just like I can understand the protesters on campuses or those against Israel. They see one “strong” group and one “weak” group, so they assume the strong group is evil, oppressive, conquering, and cruel, while the weak group is good, innocent, and oppressed.

Facts don’t really matter to them. They go straight for emotions. This has always been an issue, so it’s important to explain to them, in a respectful way, why they are wrong, and looking at the conflict in a simplistic way.

The headline of the post I saw was “Breaking Zionist Myth.” I quietly chuckled to myself. Here’s another idea for an article. This should be interesting. I wonder what they’re misrepresenting now?

Their topic was “Understanding the Nakba.”

I kept reading to see what the supposed Zionist myth was. There must be something new, right?!

“The Palestinians lost their homes because they did not accept the partition plan.”

Wait, didn’t you say you were going to talk about myths? Why are you stating facts? Must be an editing mistake…

Now seriously, that statement is 100% accurate.
If the Palestinians had accepted the partition plan, the war wouldn’t have started, and this wouldn’t have happened.

Let’s see how “Zochrot” and “Shoresh” try to break down this simple fact.

the Zionist “myth”. All credit goes to “shoresh” and “zochrot”

On the surface, it is correct that the Zionist leaders accepted the UN-proposed partition plan in 1947, while the Palestinian leadership rejected it. But we need to ask why these decisions were made. The partition plan gave 55% of the land to the Jewish state and 45% to the Arab state, even though Jews were only a third of the population and owned less than 10% of the land at that time.״

First of all, I’m glad you acknowledge that the Palestinians rejected the offer and the Zionists agreed. Even today, people argue over such facts.

It is true that the plan proposed 55% of the land to the Jewish state and 45% to the Arab state. However, when you write, “Because the Jews received more land despite being a smaller portion of the population, the Arabs rejected the proposal,” you open the possibility that the Arabs would have agreed to a different proposal. This is factually incorrect. Let’s go back in time.

The Peel commission

In 1936, after years of massacres against Jews by Arabs and during the Arab Revolt, the British decided it was time to find a solution. They investigated and reached their conclusions in the Peel Commission. They recommended a plan for two states for two peoples:

About 17% of the land would go to the Jewish state

About 75% of the land would go to the Arab state

The rest would remain under British control.

What was the Arabs’ response? Immediate rejection. The Zionist movement did not agree to the plan as it was but called for peace talks based on it.

The White Paper of 1939

In 1939, after the Arab revolt, the British betrayed the Jews. they made the following decisions in the White Paper of 1939:

1. Establish a bi-national state within 10 years.

2. Limit Jewish immigration to 75,000 over five years, after which any further immigration would require Arab consent.

3. Restrict Jewish land purchases to 5% of the land.

In summary, within 10 years, a bi-national state would be established with Arabs making up about two-thirds of the population and Jews one-third. There would be no more Jewish immigration, and Jews would be limited to purchasing only 5% of the land, with 95% allocated to Arabs. What was the Arabs’ response? Immediate rejection.

(It should be noted that the League of Nations rejected the British White Paper, rightly claiming it was against the mandate and the law, such as stopping Jewish immigration and limiting land purchases.)

The 1947 partition plan

Now, regarding the partition plan. The partition plan proposed (non-binding, as explained in my previous article) two states for two peoples, with 55% of the mandate territory going to the Jewish state and 45% to the Arab state. As we remember, the Jews accepted, and the Arabs rejected the proposal and started a war.

But was the proposal really unfair? Let me argue otherwise.

1. More than 50% of the Jewish state’s territory was undeveloped desert, for example; the Negev, which was state-owned by the British – and this is my next point.

2. According to British data, more than 70% of the proposed Jewish state’s territory was state land owned by the British government, and the British and the United Nations were committed by the mandate to give state lands to Jews >>

“The Administration of Palestine… shall encourage, in cooperation with the Jewish Agency… close settlement by Jews on the land, including State lands and waste lands not acquired for public purposes” (Article 6), and that it “shall introduce a land system appropriate to the needs of the country, having regard, among other things, to the desirability of promoting the close settlement and intensive cultivation of the land.” (Article 11).

3. As I explained in my previous article, according to the League of Nations, a Jewish state was supposed to be created in the mandate. Slowly, due to Arab massacres and murders of Jews, the British tried to eliminate this.

Again, when you say the proposal was unfair and that’s why the Arabs rejected it, you open the possibility that they would have accepted some partition proposal. This is simply factually incorrect! They would have rejected any other plan of partition.

Let’s continue.

The Palestinian leadership preferred a plan for a single state where the Jewish minority would be equal citizens. But the partition plan followed the Balfour Declaration’s preference for Zionist goals over those of the Palestinian national movement.”

That’s interesting, then why did the Arab Higher Committee insist that the proportion of Jews to Arabs in the “single state” should be one to six, meaning that only Jews who lived in Palestine before the British Mandate would be eligible for citizenship?

Stop, “Zochrot” and “Shoresh” – we see your lies, and it’s really, really sad.

“According to the partition plan, Palestinians were to make up nearly half of the population in the proposed Jewish state. This raised concerns about forced displacement early on, as the Zionist mainstream had been discussing plans for transferring Palestinians outside of Palestine as early as the 1920s and the 1930s, even before 1948, 57 Palestinian villages were depopulated, and many lost their livelihoods due to the ideology of “Hebrew labor”, which favored hiring Jews over non-Jewish Arab workers.”

When you refer to the “plans”, do you mean the Peel Commission, the commission that the British themselves proposed that would require population exchanges..?

Let’s continue. Yes, Palestinians left their homes before ’48.
Maybe because they started the war in November 1947, one day after the UN voted the partition plan?

Sometimes your points are completely ridiculous.

“Despite formal acceptance of the partition plan, the Zionist leadership, in particular David Ben Gurion, viewed the plan as a stepping stone towards future expansions of the Jewish state. Military decisions, such as Plan D, disregarded partition borders and led to attacks and conquest beyond them, contributing to the ongoing Nakba.”

On November 29, the UN General Assembly voted in favor of partition. One day later, the Palestinians started the war and began killing Jews.
Plan D was implemented only in April, months after the Palestinians and Arabs started the war. Until then, the Jews were on the defensive.

Regarding David Ben-Gurion:

Five days after the UN resolution, on December 3, 1947, Ben-Gurion said in a speech: “In our state, there will be non-Jews as well, and all of them will be equal citizens, equal in everything without exception. That is, the state will be their state as well.”
Ben-Gurion also called for the implementation of the partition in 1947.

However, in May 1948, Ben-Gurion rightfully said: We accepted the UN partition, but the Arabs did not. They are preparing to make war on us. If we defeat them and capture western Galilee or territory on both sides of the road to Jerusalem, these areas will become part of the state. Why should we obligate ourselves to accept boundaries that the Arabs don’t accept?”

 

“Additionally, The Zionist movement actually acted to prevent the establishment of a Palestinian state, and allowed Jordan to annex territories intended. In November 1947, ten days before the adoption of the decision at the United Nations, Golda Meir went to a meeting with the Jordanian king, which resulted in an oral agreement: the king would annex to his kingdom all the eras of the country that the UN was about to confer to the Palestinian state while committing not to exceed them and not to invade the Jewish state within the borders to be determined by the UN assembly.”

This is yet another piece of Palestinian propaganda that is not based on anything. Are there any proofs of this conspiracy? No. When you truly look at the documents on which this conspiracy is based, they actually prove the opposite. Golda Meir opposed any agreement that would contradict the UN proposal, which was voted on 12 days later. She did not “agree” for the Jordanians to occupy the territory that was supposed to be transferred to the Palestinians. If anyone is interested in reading more about this, Efraim Karsh, an Israeli historian, has written an entire book on this unfounded conspiracy.

Now, I have a message for ‘Zochrot‘ and ‘Shoresh.’ Please stop lying.
I would be happy to talk with you and explain where you are wrong. In any case,

I’m waiting for a response.

About the Author
Roni Bonchek is a teen from Israel who advocates, debates, and teaches about the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.
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