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Ted Belman
Editor of Israpundit.org

It’s not too late to make amends to the Jewish people

When the United Nations passed the Partition Plan in 1947, there were 630,000 Jews and 1,324,000 Arabs living in Palestine according to the Jewish Virtual Library. It should be asked, why weren’t the Jews in the majority after the 25 year mandate which was required, according to Eugene Rostow, “to facilitate Jewish immigration and ‘close settlement’ in Palestine”.

Prior to the Balfour Declaration in 1917, there was a wave of Jewish emigration, between 1881 and 1903. Jews who migrated in this wave came mostly from Eastern Europe and from Yemen. An estimated 25,000 to 35,000 Jews emigrated. Only half remained. But they attracted many Arabs to the Palestine area of Ottoman Syria for economic reasons.

Another factor that probably influenced this non-Jewish immigration was the First Zionist Congress in 1897 which endorsed the establishment of a Jewish home in Palestine.

These influences led to the non-Jewish population almost doubling between 1882 and 1914.

The Balfour Declaration of 1917, no doubt, gave it further impetus.

The first question that comes to mind why did Britain believe it could successfully give these lands to the Jews who represented only about 10 percent of the population at the time of the Declaration? Normally, the residents of the land get to decide on independence. Britain flew in the face of this principle by creating a mandate system which gave Jews the time to make aliyah and become the majority before independence. It believed that the Jews of the world would do so en masse during the mandate period resulting in a Jewish majority by the time it declared independence. So it declared in favor “a national home for the Jewish people” who numbered over 16 million in the world at that time.

In 1920, this declaration was elevated to a law by the San Remo Resolution. By this resolution, the Jews acquired the right to all the land known as Palestine. This resolution was passed in accordance with international law.

Sacred Trust

The resolution created a trust, under which the Mandatory Power, Britain, was the Trustee and the Jewish people, the beneficiary. This Trust came into being immediately, even before the Mandate itself was signed in 1922.

Section 22 of the Covenant of the League of Nations provided;

“there should be applied the principle that the well-being and development of such peoples form a sacred trust of civilization and that securities for the performance of this trust should be embodied in this Covenant.”

Shortly after the San Remo Resolution, Britain had a change of heart and began violating it. Rather than restrict Arab immigration and accept Jewish immigration, it did the opposite.

In 1922 Churchill produced a White Paper which limited Jewish immigration to the “absorptive capacity” of the land and thereafter acted on it.

In 1937, Britain’s Peel Commission Report recommended partition. Then, in 1939, Britain issued a White Paper which, according to the Virtual Jewish Library,

“rejected the Peel Commission’s partition plan on the grounds that it was not feasible. The document stated that Palestine would be neither a Jewish state nor an Arab one, but an independent state to be established within ten years. Jewish immigration to Palestine was limited to 75,000 for the first five years, subject to the country’s “economic absorptive capacity, and would later be contingent on Arab consent. Stringent restrictions were imposed on land acquisition by Jews.

“The Jewish Agency for Palestine issued a scathing response to the White Paper, saying the British were denying the Jewish people their rights in “darkest hour of Jewish history.”

And that was before Hitler began talking about the “Final Solution“ in 1941.

This recommendation was not endorsed by the League of Nations but it was followed by Britain anyway. She allowed in only 94,000 Jews between 1939 and 1946. Thereafter, till Israel’s Declaration of Independence, Britain allowed in only 176,000 Jews preferring to keep the vast majority of Jews in displaced persons camps throughout Europe.

Had Britain honored its 1917 declaration and its obligation under the San Remo Resolution, Israel would have had a population of at least 4 million, Jews, (assuming half of those that were killed in the Holocaust could have escaped) when it declared independence and would have included all of what is now Jordan. The Arab population would not have doubled from its then number of 600,000.

Furthermore had Britain allowed all Jews to emigrate prior to the Wannsee Conference on January 20, 1942, Hitler would have enabled their emigration. After all, Hitler at first just wanted a Juden Free Europe. He was open to their emigration. Israel could have declared independence three years earlier and Israel would have had a population of more like 7 million Jews at the time of independence.

The neighboring Arab countries would not have invaded Israel in 1948 and there would be no Arab refugee problem today, no Temple Mount violence and no Oslo Accords.

So what is to be done about Britain’s breach of trust and all the damage it did to the Jewish homeland? What’s to be done to make matters right so far as that is possible?

It should be noted that the US aided and abetted this breach of trust throughout the entire period.

At the end of WWII, the answer was clear.

After WWII and the crushing defeat of Germany and its allies, the victors changed borders and moved populations. It was their right.

Der Spiegel reported;

“But the people fleeing the Red Army were unaware that the Allies had already agreed with the Polish government-in-exile to hand over large parts of eastern Germany to Poland and resettle the Germans who were living there.

“All those who didn’t manage to escape in time fell victim to the frenzied expulsions that were carried out until July 1945. The organized resettlement of Germans and ethnic Germans from Germany’s former eastern areas and the Sudetenland began in January 1946. In all, some 14 million Germans lost their homes.

“These expulsions were often done in a brutal manner and were carried out as part of a broader program of nation-building pursued by the new communist government between 1945 and 1949.

“The centre-piece of this program was an attempt to achieve the ethnic homogenization of the state, to ensure as close a match as possible between its ethnic and political borders.”

At no time did the allies object to this “ethnic homogenization”.

In 1947, when Britain planned for India’s independence, it also redrew borders to achieve “ethnic homogenization.”

So it partitioned India into India and Pakistan and 15 million people voluntarily moved on foot from one to the other.

The United Nations also decided to follow Britain’s example in India and passed the 1947 Partition Plan of Palestine as it then was. Israel took advantage of this Plan and declared independence in 1948.

But there was no attempt to move Muslims. Just the opposite. The United Nations created UNRWA to preserve the status of the “refugees” as it newly defined them. The rest as they say is history.

Ethnic homogenization is intended to avoid creating “Cleft nations” which are inherently unstable. 

“A cleft nation is one in which the major ethnic groups are so clearly separate from one another in terms of values that it is difficult to form a national culture. These groups tend to be insulated from one another, particularly if they do not share the same or similar religions and value systems.”

Yugoslavia was a prime example.

Israel is another.

The only way to bring stability to Israel is to remove the cleft and enable ethnic homogenization as far as it is possible.

Palestine, as it existed in 1945 before Jordan’s independence should have been divided into two states, Israel and Jordan with the Jordan River separating them AND Muslims should have been moved from Israel to Jordan. This, essentially, is the Jordan Option.

It is not too late to do what needs to be done.

All Palestinians who are not Israeli citizens should be induced to move to Jordan and Israel should declare sovereignty over all lands to the west of the Jordan River.

About the Author
Ted Belman is the editor and publisher of Israpundit and has been for 20 years. He made aliya in 2009.
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