The Two-State Solution: a recurring nightmare (Part One).

The “Two State Solution” is a recurring nightmare which plagues the vividly chilling dreams of children on both sides of the great divide.
The “Two State Solution” is a recurring nightmare which plagues the vividly chilling dreams of children on both sides of the great divide.

The Two-State Solution: a recurring nightmare, Part 1.  1919-1948

Inspired by The Jewish History Podcasts, with Rabbi Yaakov Wolbe. Episodes 83 & 84 

Nightmare disorders are a central feature of the Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. In the Middle East and beyond, the “Two State Solution” is a recurring nightmare which plagues the vividly chilling dreams of children on both sides of the great divide.

The never succeeding “land for peace” proposals have consistently resulted in less land for the Jews, and less peace for those on both sides of the equation. It is time for the world to extinguish the blazing flames of this recurring nightmare.

In 539 B.C., Cyrus the Great liberated the Jews from captivity. Released from their Babylonian exile, many returned to Jerusalem. Over two millennium later, the British Commonwealth, never too late to subscribe to this Cyrusian philosophy, passed the Abolition of the Slave Trade Act.

This trend was followed chronologically by the United States, Spain, Sweden, the Netherlands, and France. In the Russian empire, “slavery” was rebranded as “serfdom”, whereby humans could be bought and sold with the transfer land.

At the turn of the 19th Century, despite the abolition of slavery, treatment of Jews in Europe was reminiscent of the Babylonian exile, the cruel crusades, and the vicious inquisition. Indentured servitude, the uprooting of Jewish populations and savage pogroms were commonplace. The British Commonwealth, outraged by these atrocities, declared their support for the establishment, “…of a national home for the Jewish people” in our indigenous ancestral homeland. This became known as the Balfour Declaration.

Balfour, while serving as foreign secretary, speaks at the Hebrew University in Jerusalem in 1925.
[Artist Topical Press Agency/Historica Graphica Collection/Heritage Images/Getty Images]
Public domain, WikiCommons

In 1919, the first, “Two-State Solution” was proposed at the Paris Peace Conference. Jews were exhilarated by the proposal. The Arabs rejected it before the ink was dry.      The leading Arab figure in Holy Land was Haj Amin al-Husseini (1895-1974). His response was suicide groups called, fedayeen (“one who sacrifices himself”). They launched violent attacks in Jerusalem leaving 200 Jews injured and six murdered.

A month later, the nightmare recurred, rekindling the “Two State Solution” as, The San Remo Resolution.

Delegates to the San Remo conference in Italy, 25 April 1920

The League of Nations reaffirmed the plan. The proposed Arab portion was four times the size of the proposed Jewish State. In the proposal, the Arabs were granted the Kingdom of Jordan, the entire Negev, Judea, Samaria, and Gaza. The Jews were offered a mere 4% of the land, divided into two non-contiguous regions. Jerusalem, despite a Jewish majority since the 1890s, would be governed by the British. Chaim Weizmann who later became the First President of Israel declared that he was willing to accept a state, “…even if it is the size of a tablecloth. If they grant us a state, we’re taking it.”

(Left) Zionist Rejoicings. British Mandate For Palestine Welcomed, The Times, Monday, Apr 26, 1920.png
UK Copyright Service, For literary, dramatic, musical or artistic works.
(Right) Chaim Weizmann attended the San Remo conference which confirmed the Balfour Declaration and awarded the Palestine Mandate to Great Britain. The same year, Weizmann, who had been president of the English Zionist Federation from 1917, became head of the World Zionist Organization. The Arabs categorically rejected the deal, demanding that all of the lands be under Arab control and all Jews be expelled from the region.

In April 1921, Haj Amin al-Husseini’s riots left 43 dead Jews. England analyzed the riots concluding that, “…the Arab majority, who were generally the aggressors, inflicted most of the casualties.”

In response to the inability of the British to protect Jewish businesses and families, Ze’ev Jabotinsky organized the first Jewish paramilitary group, the Haganah (Hebrew for “defense”).


Jabotinsky together with Joseph Trumpeter,  had co-founded the Jewish League of the British Army in WWI.



In 1922, the “Two State Solution” nightmare recurred again. The League of Nations granted a mandate with 20% being a “Jewish national home” to the west of the Jordan river. The remaining 80% of the land became the Arab portion, “The Hashemite kingdom of Transjordan”, which is today’s Jordan.

But that’s not what the world is talking about today when referring to a “Two State Solution.” They are talking about whittling away the 20% intended as a Jewish Homeland and dividing it into “two states for two people”.

Meanwhile, in the 1920’s, the Jewish settlements were flourishing, and their economy was booming. In the Arab regions, not so much. Unhappy with the success of the Jews, they launched countless terror attacks. Over a three years period, over 500 Jews were murdered.

A British commission led by the Lord Robert Peel once again concluded that the violence was instigated by the Arabs, not the Jews. As a result, the British introduced a policy which stated that any Arabs who commits an act of terrorism would have their houses demolished.

In 1929, there existed a community of Jews in the ancient city of Hebron who had lived in peace with their Arab neighbors for centuries. On a Shabbat morning in August, mobs of men, women, and children armed with clubs, knives, axes, and stones ransacked Jewish houses, destroyed Jewish property, and murdered Jews. Among the dead were a dozen women and three children under the age of five.


French Journalist Albert Londres who is credited as a founder of investigative journalism, witnessed the attack. He wrote, “They cut off hands, they cut off fingers, they held heads over a stove, they gouged out eyes. A rabbi stood immobile; they scalped him. They made off with his brains. They mutilated the men. They shoved thirteen-year-old girls, mothers, and grandmothers into the blood and raped them in unison.”

Among the melee were two-dozen brave Arab families who risked their lives saving Jews. Yonah Molchadsky gave birth while taking refuge in an Arab basement. Haj Eissa El Kourdieh hid 33 in his cellar. The Beit Romano police station turned into a shelter and synagogue. Thousands of Arabs surrounded the station screaming, “Kill the Jews!” Each night, ten Jewish men under heavy police guard left the building to conduct funerals for the Jews murdered that day.

Over 200 Arabs were tried, convicted, and sentenced. Three were sentenced to death due to the heinous nature of their atrocities; the others were granted “mercy,” and were sentenced to life in prison.

On July 14, 1930, Arab leaders announced plans to memorialize these demonic murderers by erecting a statue in their honor. The British forbade it.

Today, the Palestinian Authority refers to three, hanged for savagery, as “Noble Heroes of Palestine.” Under the leadership of PA President Mahmoud Abbas, these demonic assassins are honored as “martyrs“ and the PA’s official newspaper, Al-Hayat Al- glorifies them in poetry and song.

In 1931 a group of Haganah commanders, dissatisfied by the strictly defensive approach which had failed to protect their families, formed the more aggressive Irgun.

With Jabotinsky in command, Avraham Stern purchased weapons from European countries which were transferred under Polish army supervision. Stern developed a plan to train 40,000 young Jews to sail for Palestine and take over the country from the British colonial authorities. He succeeded in enlisting the Polish government in this effort who began training Irgun members.

On March 28, 1938, Arab terrorists ambushed a car, and murdered six Jews. The Irgun’s Shlomo Ben-Yosef retaliated by shooting at a bus containing Arabs.

He also threw a grenade towards the bus’ engine, which failed to fire. Although there were no injuries and the bus drove away safely, the British authorities hanged Ben Yosef. Ben Yoseph was the first Jew executed by the British authorities.

His final words were, “Long live the Kingdom of Israel on both banks of the Jordan!”  

…and then came Hitler.

The Arabs cheered for his “Final; Solution.” Haj Amin al-Husseini met with Hitler and toured the Death Camps. Anti-Jewish violence in The Holy Land soared.

In 1940, Avraham Stern’s patience had run out. The time for diplomacy with the Arabs and the British was over. Jews were perishing in Europe, and they had no where to go. Stern formed LEHI (Fighters for the Freedom of Israel), often referred to as “The Stern Gang”, and stern they were! Its avowed aim was to evict the British authorities from Palestine.

Avraham even attempted to form an alliance with the Nazis, proposing a Jewish state to rid Europe of their Jews. We know how well that went. In 1945, the war was over and 2/3 of Europe’s Jews perished.

Two years later the United Nations had a brilliant idea: take the region, which was intended to be a Jewish Homeland, and give half to the Arabs. And voila, the nightmare of a “Two State Solution” recurred, and the “Partition Plan” was born.

The Arab’s response was predictable. Abdul Rahman Hassan Azzam, the Egyptian Secretary General of the Arab League declared that the Arabs will never concede to a Jewish State. Despite the Arab opposition, on the 29th of November 1947 the United Nations overwhelmingly approved the Partition plan.

Within a few months, Arab terrorists murdered 1,000 Jews in the region.

In April of 1948 the Arabs committed the Hadassah medical convoy massacre. Seventy-eight Jewish doctors, nurses, students, and other medical personnel on route to Hadassah Hospital were butchered and burned beyond recognition. Twenty-three were women.

Dozens of unidentified bodies, burned beyond recognition, were buried in a mass grave.

On May 14th, 1948, with overwhelming support from the international community, the State of Israel raised its flag of independence.

About the Author
Gary Branfman, MD is co-founder of, past president of Congregation B’nai Israel in Victoria, Texas and singlehandedly had the IHRA definition of Antisemitism endorsed by the City. Dr. Branfman has lectured internationally on Racism and has written for several publications. He has appeared on CBS evening news with David Begnaud and Al Jazeera.