Famous Arab Israeli Conflict Quotes



   
    April 2001 Passover Edition            
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A Collection of Historical Quotations
Relating to the Arab Refugees

Collected by Moshe Kohn

ON APRIL 23, 1948 Jamal Husseini, acting chairman of the Palestine Arab Higher Committee (AHC), told the UN Security Council: "The Arabs did not want to submit to a truce ... They preferred to abandon their homes, belongings and everything they possessed."

ON SEPTEMBER 6, 1948, the Beirut Daily Telegraph quoted Emil Ghory, secretary of the AHC, as saying: "The fact that there are those refugees is the direct consequence of the action of the Arab states in opposing partition and the Jewish state. The Arab states agreed upon this policy unanimously..."

ON JUNE 8, 1951, Habib Issa, secretary-general of the Arab League, wrote in the New York Lebanese daily al-Hoda that in 1948, Azzam Pasha, then League secretary, had "assured the Arab peoples that the occupation of Palestine and of Tel Aviv would be as simple as a military promenade ... Brotherly advice was given to the Arabs of Palestine to leave their land, homes and property, and to stay temporarily in neighbouring fraternal states."

IN THE MARCH 1976 issue of Falastin a-Thaura, then the official journal of the Beirut-based PLO, Mahmud Abbas ("Abu Mazen"), PLO spokesman, wrote: "The Arab armies entered Palestine to protect the Palestinians from the Zionist tyranny but, instead, they abandoned them, forced them to emigrate and to leave their homeland, and threw them into prisons similar to the ghettos in which the Jews used to live."

ON APRIL 9, 1953, the Jordanian daily al-Urdun quoted a refugee, Yunes Ahmed Assad, formerly of Deir Yassin, as saying: "For the flight and fall of the other villages, it is our leaders who are responsible, because of the dissemination of rumours exaggerating Jewish crimes and describing them as atrocities in order to inflame the Arabs ... they instilled fear and terror into the hearts of the Arabs of Palestine until they fled, leaving their homes and property to the enemy."

ANOTHER refugee told the Jordanian daily a-Difaa on September 6, 1954: "The Arab governments told us, 'Get out so that we can get in.' So we got out, but they did not get in."

THE JORDANIAN daily Falastin wrote on February 19, 1949: "The Arab states ... encouraged the Palestinian Arabs to leave their homes temporarily in order to be out of the way of the Arab invasion armies."

ON OCTOBER 2, 1948, the London Economist reported, in an eyewitness account of the flight of Haifa's Arabs: "There is little doubt that the most potent of the factors [in the flight] were the announcements made over the air by the Arab Higher Executive urging all Arabs in Haifa to quit ... And it was clearly intimated that those Arabs who remained in Haifa and accepted Jewish protection would be regarded as renegades."

THE PRIME Minister of Syria in 1948, Khaled al-Azem, in his memoirs, published in 1973, listed what he thought were the reasons for the Arab failure in 1948: " ... the fifth factor was the call by the Arab governments to the inhabitants of Palestine to evacuate it and leave for the bordering Arab countries .... We brought destruction upon a million Arab refugees by calling on them and pleading with them to leave their land."

~~~~~~~

from the April 2001 Passover Edition of the Jewish Magazine

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