Sunday, February 1, 2015

Smalla-Yamina-Left-Right; Independent Israelis Need No Help in Deciding From the Outside

Nadene Goldfoot                                                                   
Metula in the Northern Galilee  close to the Good Neighbor Fence dividing Lebanon and Israel

In researching  for my previous article, Peaceworks Network Foundation, "One voice International" came up. It is the Peaceworks Network Foundation's FLAGSHIP.     Its subtitle is "Israel and Palestine."  Using that, I didn't have to look any further but did to see that it is for the 2 state solution. with the 1967 border as a base for its format.  This is something Netanyahu had explained to Obama on the TV interview program a year ago that is impossible for Israel to go back to while Obama and the Arabs are pushing for it.  Of course, the US State Department is one of the partners of Peaceworks and so is the UK Labour Party.  The UK lists Israel as the 2nd most hated group in the world, I might add.  Only North Korea was first.
"1967 Lines: These refer to the armistice lines from before the Six Day War, when Israel captured the Gaza Strip from Egypt and the West Bank and East Jerusalem from Jordan, among other land, expanding its territory beyond the "Green Line" borders delineated by a 1949 armistice between Israel and its Arab neighbors."  Major wars that Israel has had to defend itself in aggressive attacks have been the War of Independence from 47 to 49; The Sinai War of 29th  October until 5th of November 1956; The 5th to June 11th 1967 in the Six Day War; the War of Attrition from 1968 to cease-fire on 7-8 August 1970; and Yom Kippur War of 1973 from October 6th to the 25th.  Then Israel went into Lebanon in 1982 to stop the bombing on the northern Galilee.  

I believe Netanyahu is the most well versed person in the world  about the dangers Israel faces.  It is he who has the General's ears and the Knesset's opinions.  

It must be that they have the Moshiach working for the Foundation as they say in their website, " we are providing the centrist mainstream on both sides with the opportunities and tools to build momentum for a peace agreement and #2StatesNOW."  

Really.  With all the daily changes that come along in the Middle East, especially with IS in the picture now, these Americans and Englishmen think they know best what to do, better than all the Israelis who live there 24/7. 
Yitzak Rabin-Labor Party bred and became Prime Minister under

As if Israel hasn't tried such an approach!  Israel has groups from left to right, such as the Peace Now group.  It was Rabin of the Labor party  himself who promised not to return to the 4th of June 1967 lines.  In 1992, Rabin was re-elected as prime minister on a platform embracing the Israeli–Palestinian peace process. He signed several historic agreements with the Palestinian leadership as part of the Oslo Accords. In 1994, Rabin won the Nobel Peace Prize together with long-time political rival Shimon Peres and Palestinian leader Yasir Arafat. In November 1995, he was assassinated by a right-wing Israeli radical named Yigal Amir, who was opposed to the peace process.  Israel has been on the left, and now in such times have decided to be on the right.  They want the best to protect them from such things as atomic weaponry.  They will make up their own minds in March what is necessary for this year and the next do do not need meddling people with their own agenda that doesn't include Israel's best interests.                                           

The fact that Israel is a democracy and the people who live there feel they know what is the best to do for themselves doesn't seem to enter into the picture.  Netanyahu has explained why the 67 border is out of the question.  Is One Voice International a team of Generals?  I doubt if one of the team members has ever been in the armed forces, and especially in Israel.  How would Americans like it if Mexico came and told them how to come to a peaceful ending with---Germany during WWII?  Do you think Germany would have laid down their arms?  

"OneVoice is an international movement of Americans, Palestinians, Israelis, Europeans, Muslims, Jews and Christians who are fed up with the ongoing conflict  and who are ready and eager to support a serious process, leading to a comprehensive agreement that will fulfill the hopes and beliefs of both the Palestinian and the Israeli people for a two-state solution.  Founded in 2002, OneVoice works to amplify the voice of the moderate majority of Palestinian and Israelis, empowering them to seize back the agenda for conflict resolution.

Hmm.  I believe having to go into Gaza for Operation Defensive Edge came after trying many such agendas for conflict resolution.  It wasn't Israel's first choice but was at the end with people who have their own agenda; to destroy Israel, who have no goal to live peacefully with Israel.    Dear Americans and Englishmen and all of Europe involved in this; what works on paper or in business is not workable here.  I've also been through the ropes and was trained in conflict resolutions to be a moderator, and in Israel with Palestinians this would be laughable.  Ah yes, we did have our conflicts in eastern Oregon with the ranchers and the farmers. 

 All I can say is that when I lived in Israel from 1980 to 1985, my mother back in Oregon had no idea what was going on other than what I wrote in letters to her.  I didn't list all the dangerous things we faced every day or she would have been terribly worried.  I just told her about a few of them.  The Oregonian newspaper knew nothing and printed nothing.  The TV evidently didn't inform people, or she didn't watch, typical of many Americans.  They were uninformed.  I kept saying, if she only knew half of it she'd plotz!!  I case you're wondering, I lived in Safed, which is in the northern Galilee and would drive to Metula which was near the Syrian-Lebanese border and was there in 82 when our soldiers went into Lebanon to stop the shelling.  Our school mate had gone there during our holiday break from school and she couldn't leave the bomb shelter.  We were worried about her.  This was before cell phones and of course we had no computers.  

Resource: Book:   Letters From Israel by Nadene Goldfoot

Saturday, January 31, 2015

Obama's Plot to Unseat Netanyahu in Israeli Election in March with V15

Nadene Goldfoot                                          
A real anti-Semite mid-western American is now in Israel trying to manipulate the Israelis to unseat Obama.  It's Jeremy Bird, (the Vulture to me), who is working for V15, the Team Obama community organizing campaign wizard.  He's working out of an office in Tel Aviv and is planning to defeat Netanyahu in the March elections.  V15 is a campaign vehicle of the Peaceworks Network Foundation.  Is this how Obama gets even with the Senate for inviting Netanyahu to speak to them about the dangers of Iran and nuclear capabilities without his knowledge?
Cairo-born Arafat at UN
Bird's thinking is that of blaming Israel and was pro Arafat.  He was an important cog in the US President Barack Obama's 2 campaigns for becoming president.  He continued in Obama's Organizing for America as deputy director.  

How does one get on the devious bandwagon in the USA?  He went to Harvard and attended their Divinity School from 2000 to 2002, getting a Master's.  Bird grew up in High Ridge, Missouri, the son of two financially struggling Baptists. Bird attended Wabash College, graduating with a major in religion in 2000, before before getting his Master's at Harvard.   
Marshall Ganz-Obama's political campaign specialist prof

Bird also took classes at Harvard's John F. Kennedy School of Government, including a class with political organizer Marshall Ganz.  "Marshall Ganz (born March 14, 1943) is a senior lecturer in public policy at the Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University. He worked on the staff of the United Farm Workers for sixteen years before becoming a trainer and organizer for political campaigns, unions and nonprofit groups. He is credited with devising the successful grassroots organizing model and training for Barack Obama’s winning 2008 presidential campaign."
Edmund Hanauer
 Bird went to Cambridge and there worked with Edmund Hanauer, another defamer of Israel.  In 1972 Hanauer founded Search for Justice and Equality in Palestine/Israel.  Hanauer thought of Israel as a place to disregard law, human rights and democratic values like Syria has done.  He thought they were corrupt because they received a measurable amount of US aid.  With all that interest in subjects at Divinity School, did he ever study the 5 books of Moses?  I doubt it.  That's in the "Old Testament" of many bibles, of which evidently only the Jews and evangelicals read and respect.  If he had, he'd know that Israel, being a Jewish state, is a religion of laws for mankind to enable us to do the right things.

Hanauer wrote an op-ed in the Milwaukee Sentinel, "The Double Standard Must End," on February 25, 2002.  In it he showed how he loathed Israel.  His name on the article was "Edmund Hanauer, American Jewish political scientist."    So often the worst haters of Israel turn out to be our own people.  Most of them are not Jews born and bred in Israel, however, like Noam Chomsky, American bred Linguist.  Many times it comes from their parents' self loathing for the orthodox community of Judaism, those that expect the most out of themselves in relation to religion.

This op-ed came out in the paper and then a few days later Hanauer and Bird attended a Bash Israel event at Harvard. where Bird had a tizzy because the then President Bush called Arafat a terrorist.  In Bird's mind, it was General Sharon who was a terrorist.  Hanauer thought the USA was practicing a double standard, calling it selectively defining terrorism.  All he had to do was to look terrorism up in a Webster's Collegiate Dictionary, or don't Harvard people need dictionaries anymore?  It is the systematic use of terror, especially as a means of coercion.  Too bad smart Hanauer hadn't read about the Palestinian terrorism they practiced of attacking schools and killing students in Israel, or attacking women and children so often, easy prey for terrorists.

Hanauer was completely off base when he said in his op-ed that Bush made it harder for Arafat to stop Palestinian "extremists" and curb violence and called this the cycle of violence.  As if Arafat wasn't the instigator for terrorism and violence.  Good grief!  Here are statements from Arafat.

1.  "We plan to eliminate the state of Israel and establish a purely Palestinian state. We will make life unbearable for Jews by psychological warfare and population explosion. We Palestinians will take over everything, including all of Jerusalem."
2. Peace for us means the destruction of Israel. We are preparing for an all-out war, a war which will last for generations.
3. Whoever thinks of stopping the uprising before it achieves its goals, I will give him ten bullets in the chest.

"Palestinians should offer non-violent resistance to stop the expansion of Jewish settlements into Palestinian land, said Hanauer, the leader of a national human rights organization at a Harvard Divinity School (HDS) forum yesterday."  For a group no able to do anything non-violently, as history shows, this was instigating terrorism against Israelis.  It shows how little he knew about his subject, the Palestinians.  Evidently he hadn't read about Haj Amin, the Grand Mufti of Jerusalem and how he instigated in 1929 causing the death of many Jews.  

 Edmund Hanauer was the director of SEARCH for Justice and Equality in Palestine/Israel (SEARCH). He had a BA from Dartmouth College and a Ph.D. in Political Science from American University. His dissertation focused on the relationship of American Jews to the state of Israel.Edmund R. (Ned) Hanauer, an American Jewish human rights activist, was director of Search....a Boston-based human rights group. Hanauer, a life-long peace and human rights activist, died after a short illness on August 10, 2006. He was 68.

"The point is simple: Hanauer will do whatever he can to weaken support for the very existence of Israel. He has been doing this for years, and it's hardly news that he continues this effort. The public should not be misled into thinking that this petition indicates some new and growing opposition toward Israel or that we have here a well meaning organization looking to improve human rights and to progress toward peace. Nothing could be further from the truth. ABRAHAM H. FOXMAN, Associate National Director, Anti-Defamation League of B'nai B'rith, New York, Jan. 15, 1981."

So, ladies and gentlemen, here we have a true blue anti-Semite, Edmund Hanauer,  who has trained another one, Bird, who is now in Israel working to unseat Netanyahu.  Please show Bird how well informed you are and what you think of his plot.  

Turnspeak, the inverting of facts, has had the propaganda effect of perpetuating the false claim of displaced and terrorized Arabs in the Jewish settled area of Palestine did not start in 1948 as Arafat has tried to say.  In the Holy Land, Jews and Christians suffered from discrimination, persecution and pogroms by the Ottoman Empire who was in charge and the wandering Bedouins.  In 1839, the Jew's life was not much above that of a dog according to the British Consulate report.  So one thing the Palestinians have done successfully is to use turnspeak and turn around the Jewish history to become Palestinian history which it is not the same at all.  Their success has been to keep their own people uneducated so they don't know how wrong their leaders have been.

Postscript: Whatever our universities are teaching as to work around dissention such as the Palestinian/Israel situation is not facing reality.  That a problem may be solved between people in Kentucky or Missouri between rich and poor, black and white, or whatever the differences are-bankers and workers, is not working in the Middle East.  The so called do-gooders are turning out to be meddlers and are causing more harm than good simply because they cannot accept that their blueprint is ill advising and needs to be changed to fit the situation.  It's happened in Afghanistan and Pakistan and it's happened with Israel and the Palestinians.  This is a unique situation and much study has to go into the history and the people carefully by people not already swayed by anti-Semitism, such as the men above are.  Even the Jews in this article are anti-Israel; same thing.  We do have self-hating Jews, unable to trust the leadership of Israel because it isn't Harvard educated.  However, Netanyahu has attended Harvard along with a few other American universities.

1/30/15 update:  " Netanyahu returned to the United States in late 1972 to study architecture at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. He returned to Israel in October 1973 to serve in the Yom Kippur War for a 40-day period.  While there, he fought in special forces raids along the Suez Canal, as well as leading a commando team deep into Syrian territory. He then returned to the United States and eventually completed an S.B. degree  in architecture in 1975 and earned an S.M. degree from the MIT Sloan School of Management in 1977. Concurrently, he studied political science at Harvard University.  

Resource: (The Double Standard Must End) by Hanauer
update: 1/30/15

Ted Cruz Requests Investigation: Has Obama Launched a Political Campaign Against Netanyahu

Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Jewish Struggle for Palestine: 1942-1945

Nadene Goldfoot                                   
British Soldier 1917

In 1920, the League of Nations decided that since the WWI was over in 1917, the Jews should regain Palestine, the land that had been Judea and Samaria or as it had been called originally, Israel and Judah.  It had belonged to the Ottoman Empire for the past 400 years who had lost it by siding with Germany in WWI.  No country had ever become of it.  It was just wasteland gone to seed, as we say, and the only people who really wanted it were the Jews who had been without a country for the past 2,000 years but had retained Jewish people still living on the land.Great Britain was given the mandate to create the Jewish Homeland.  The mandate was for 30 years.  The French held a mandate for Syria.  Britain allowed Abdullah to be king over Transjordan, land that was part of the Jewish Homeland.  It was, at that time, just a desert that was inhabited by about 200,000 bedouins.  The British arranged for a monthly stipend of 5,000 pounds for him.  From 1921 until WWII, Britain's influence in the area went unchallenged.  The British even organized an army that was the best trained and equipped, The Arab Legion.
In 1942, the Zionists (Jews for returning to their ancient homeland of Israel and Judah/Judea) met at the Biltmore Hotel in New York City for a special Zionist conference.  The conference was centered on the original purpose of the Balfour Declaration which was the creation of an independent Jewish state once again.  It rejected the 1939 White Paper  put out by Great Britain which had curtailed Jewish immigration-going against the League of Nations' decisions to create a Jewish Homeland.  They even supported the creation of a Jewish army with its own flag and unlimited immigration of Jews to Palestine.  This was a middle of the horrible Holocaust when Jews were being slaughtered.  They felt that the Jewish Agency should have power and facilities to create the state lands in Palestine for the use of Jewish refugees.                                                                    
British soldier 1917

What changed was going from dependence on Britain to dependence on the USA.  For 30 years the British had held the mandate and had favored Arabs instead of Jews, not living up to their mandate.  Now the USA was in WWII.                                                                            
Fundamentalist Christians considered the return of the Jews to Palestine to be a fulfillment of the Old Testament prophecy.  Liberals, both religious and secular, were ashamed of the way Western civilization had dealt with the Jews and were eager to make amends.  So they were supportive and still are.  AIPAC spoke to members of Congress and other officials to educate them in the needs of the Jews' return to their ancient lands that were now open for grabs if they won the war.  It was too horrible to consider losing for everyone.                                                                            
Martin Buber, former Zionist, (1878 Vienna, Austria-1965 Jerusalem) 
  As usual, we had all sorts of opinions from the Jews themselves about the creation of an all Jewish state.  Some were against the Biltmore Program.  In Palestine itself, Jews from the Union Party, intellectuals mostly who were led by Judas Magnus, president of the Hebrew University in Jerusalem, Martin Buber, philosopher, and a few others were opposed to a pure Jewish state and wanted a bi-national one.  In the USA, the American Council for Judaism believed that Judaism was not a nationality for political ends but a faith for spiritual rejuvenation and had forgotten about their original roots as being necessary.  They thought they could just be like the Christian faith living in the USA.
Haj Amin al Husseini, Sherif of Jerusalem who caused riots of 1929 and later.
Of course the Arabs would soon be against the Biltmore program when they heard about it since Haj Amin al Husseini, the Sherif of Jerusalem,  would not go for it.  Husseini had become a Nazi-individual so was not their spokesman in good standing with the West and no longer had any clout.  Abdullah, King of Transjordan through the British dealings, was liked by President Roosevelt in 1944.  Roosevelt decided to make no decisions that would be hostile to the Arabs.  Emir Feisal, head Arab spokesman had been in favor of the Jews' return, hoping they would raise the level of his Arabs, but hadn't realized the size of the land that was designated for the Jews and thought he should have as much as they, so there were complications with his vote.                                                                    
Cyprus Internment Camp for Jews-barbed wire
In the meantime, Britain was keeping Jews out of Palestine during the war when they needed refuge there, so underground groups were formed to sneak them into the country from Europe.  The British actually turned violent against the Jews to prevent Jewish immigration.  Thousands of refugees were arrested by the British and put in camps in Cyprus after the war which was just like being put back in Nazi concentration camps.
 Cyprus Internment Camp for Jews with Piano and singer
At the time Germany was defeated in 1945, Britain's Labor Party won and this gave new hope to the Jews.  The Labor Party was more pro-Zionist and had attacked the conservative government for issuing the White Paper in 1939 which had limited Jewish immigration.  The socialist, Ernest Bevin, had defended Zionist rights.  As the new foreign secretary of the British government , he had to decide between that cause and other pressing problems he now had.  The Soviet Union was putting pressure on Turkey and Greece.  There was the separatist movement in Iranian Azerbaijan, the Kurdish autonomy bid, and the independence movement in India.  Britain didn't want anti-British uprisings with the Arabs at this time.  Beven decided to go along with the same old policies against Jews.

In August 1945, President Truman asked Prime Minister Clement Attlee for the admission of 100,000  Jewish refugees into Palestine.  An Anglo-American Commission was dispatched to London, Germany, Austria and Palestine to study the problem.  All that time studying and the Jewish refugees  in camps in Central Europe and West Germany was getting worse by the hour.
Avraham Stern, poet and nationalistic (1907 Poland-1942 Tel Aviv, Palestine) killed by British police during an arrest , former leader of Irgun Tzevai Leumi, formed Lohame Herut Israel-or Stern Gang, as the British called them.  They were also referred to as Lehi.  
The Zionist leaders in the Jewish Irgun and Stern Group were angered by holding Jews in camps and not allowing them into Palestine.  The groups got money from the USA Jews to buy weapons and coordinate their work with the Zionist force, Haganah, while Zionist political leaders denounced their terrorism.  My own 3rd cousin, Stanley Goldfoot from South Africa, was the Chief of Intelligence for the Stern group.  He was a news reporter who later started his own magazine in New York City.

Sternists such as Goldfoot were also imprisoned in Jaffa in an old Turkish-built prison fortress where about 200 Sternists, including 40 arrested in the Jerusalem Stern-camp, were held.  Here Goldfoot held an impromptu press conference in a cell. It was Ben-Gurion who had them transferred in packed prison vans to the Acre Prison where they were segregated in cell blocks.  They were released  in early 1949 after the first Israeli Knesset.

 Though it is said that the Irgun and Stern group were terrorists, they were young fighters against the British turncoats who were to help create the Jewish Homeland and did just the opposite. Joshua Cohen of the Stern Group was born in Palestine and had been able to return from 4 years in a British detention camp in Eritrea and was young enough to be ready for action.  He was the most liked in the Stern Group.  In 1942, when almost all the Sternists  had been jailed by the British, Cohen, at age 19, held the group together singlehandedly.  He used an orange grove as his headquarters where he stayed day and night with a pistol  in hand, while his girlfriend (later his wife) carried messages for him and brought back stale bread and water to go with the oranges he ate.

Bombing of King David Hotel in Jerusalem by Stern Group, 
The worst they were said to do was to bomb the King David Hotel, but had given warning to them first so they could all get out.  What happened was that those in charge decided it was a prank call and didn't warn anyone as told to do, and people did die.  Other accusations were bombing the British police stations and killing civil and military officials.  Count Folke Bernadotte, UN Mediator,  (January 2, 1895 Sweden- September 17, 1948, Jerusalem) was killed, but who did it is not known.  It wasn't Goldfoot, but it was planned by the Stern Group, otherwise known as Lehi. The Lehi group regarded Bernadotte as a stooge of the British and their Arab allies, and therefore as a serious threat to the emerging state of Israel   Anytime something did happen, these Jews were all rounded up and imprisoned.  Many young Jewish men were hung by the British in Acre. The Sternists didn't like to kill.  One of the leaders, Yizernitzky, said that "a man who goes forth to kill another whom he does not know must believe one thing only---that by his act, he will change the course of history, and that's what they were doing when they assassinated Bernadotte.  Cohen was reluctant to kill unless he regarded such action as absolutely essential.  He was an idealist.

Acre's fort was converted into a jail, where members of the Jewish underground were held during their struggle against the British, among them Zeev JabotinskiShlomo ben Yossef, and Dov Grunner. Grunner and ben Yossef were executed there. Other Jewish inmates were freed by members of theIrgun, who broke into the jail on 4 May 1947 and succeeded in releasing Jewish underground movement activists. Over 200 Arab inmates also escaped  Stanley Goldfoot was also held here.  

It was here at Acre that by May 15, 1948 this city remained in Arab hands.  Moshe Carmel, the Jewish northern front commander,  had been imprisoned by the British here in the Fortress from 1939 to 1941 for "illegal" Haganah activities, so he decided to attack that besieged town, though it was well defended.  Ben Gurion didn't object though wondered since Israel had very few troops to use for this action.  The Jews struck on May 19th.  

 Dan Kurzman, in his book, Genesis 1948, copyright 1970, does a good job of telling about this period and Stanley Goldfoot

Resource; Textbook at college:  2nd Edition of Middle East-past and present by Yahya Armajani, Thomas M. Ricks
Genesis 1948, by Dan Kurzman, copyrighted 1970.
The New Standard Jewish Encyclopedia-Avraham Stern Many old photos of Palestine,_Israel

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Ships of Jews Headed For Palestine

Nadene Goldfoot                                                                      

One thing we never hear about is what it was like for Jews who lived through Aushwitz to be freed from there at the end of World War II in 1945.  After all, Israel wasn't created until May 14, 1948-the day the British Mandate was finished.

Jew were taken to DP camps and then finally were sent to places to live.  The Jews were now in linbo without a country, flag, votes and their family roots had all been uprooted and killed.

Jon Cleary, an Australian Catholic, wrote about such experiences in his 1975 published novel, The Safe House.  He shows the what the Jews had to put up with there and their desperate attempts to get to Palestine.
Exodus 1947
I was again very disappointed with Great Britain as he wrote about how the English patrolled ships coming from Italy where Jews had to escape out of the DP camps to get to and then to board rickety ships that were making a run for it for Palestine.  It had been their job to help Jews create a Jewish Homeland, and instead they did their darndest to keep Jews out to prevent them from their creation of Israel once again. There was no heart or understanding in what the British did to the Jews after the war when they needed to get to Palestine.
During the selection at Aushwitz-who will live-who will die
His main character is an opera singer who had survived Aushwitz but had seen her mother not make the cut and was sent immediately to the showers full of gas.  Fraulein Luise Graz is a beautiful Viennese Jewish lady who becomes a leader of her compatriots in leaving the camp and head to Italy.  There was an underground group making the arrangements.  At the same time, the Americans were in the same vicinity looking for Eichmann.
Jon Cleary (1917-2010) Cleary enlisted in the Australian army on 27 May 1940 and served in the Middle East before being transferred to the Military History Unit.
I could tell right away that the author was not an American because of some of the vocabulary.  Also, I could tell he was not Jewish since he had the characters think in typical stereotyping that many Gentiles might think they would think, and it was not flattering.  I stuck with the book just to see the background of what was happening to these Jews who wanted so desperately to get to Palestine and were having such a hard time of it when they were so close.  The main male character was an American major who was in love with Luise and helped her and the others mainly because of the attraction he felt for her, and because he was just a good guy.

The fact is that "Two years after the end of World War II in Europe, some 850,000 people lived in DP camps across Europe. 

 Among them ArmeniansPolesLatviansLithuaniansEstoniansYugoslavsJews,GreeksRussiansUkrainians and Czechoslovaks. all were thrown together."    The majority were inmates of Nazi concentration campsLabor camps and prisoner-of-war camps that were freed by the Allied armies.   In portions of Eastern Europe, both civilians and military personnel fled their home countries in fear of advancing Soviet armies, who were preceded by widespread reports of mass rape, pillaging, looting, and murder.

"Displaced persons began to appear in substantial numbers in the spring of 1945. Allied forces took them into their care by improvising shelter wherever it could be found. Accommodations primarily included former military barracks, but also included summer camps for children, airports, hotels, castles, hospitals, private homes, and even partly destroyed structures. Although there were continuous efforts to sort and consolidate populations, there were hundreds of DP facilities in Germany, Austria, Italy, and other European countries by the end of 1945. One camp was even set up in Guanajuato in Mexico."

The idea that many DPs, may not want to return to their country of origin was not initially taken into account. Yet, two million DPs, including 50.000 Jews, refused to return to their homeland. This group began to grow from September 1945 as the first groups of Jews fleeing from anti-Semitic violence in Poland began illegally entering the American Zone of Germany. Later they were joined by Jewish refugees from Hungary Czechoslovakia and Romania.In consequence, by the end of 1946, two-thirds of Jewish DPs in Germany and Austria were people who were not directly involved in the Shoah, but survived Holocaust in hiding or in the USSR and later decided to flee Eastern Europe. By mid-1947, the Jewish DP population reached about 250,000 people housed in hundreds of DP centres- about 185000 of them in Germany, 45,000 in  Austria and 20,000 in Italy.
Brichah is thought to be the largest clandestine movement of people in the history, transferring an estimate of up to 150,000 people from Eastern Europe to Palestine. In order to get to the sea ports, the refugees were forced to journey for miles, most often on foot, over snow covered mountains, often carrying babies and children. The ships on which survivors were fleeing Europe, often overcrowded old cargo and cruise ships, where in ninety percent of cases  intercepted by the British Navy and the survivors sent back to Germany or to the detention camp in Cyprus. The best known of such cases was the Exodus 1947 affair. The ship carrying 4500 passengers was stopped on its way to Palestine by the English and during subsequent fight, three people were killed and many injured. Despite the protests of international public opinion all passengers were sent back to DP camps in Germany.  This is the group, Brichah, that Jon Cleary had in his book who were trying to help the Jews get to ships.  
Resource: The Safe House by Jon Cleary, Novel, 316 pages, printed 1975

Monday, January 26, 2015

10,000 Jews In Damascus and What Happened to Them

Nadene Goldfoot                                              
Forced to leave Jerusalem 70 CE-Fall of Temple
Jews were in Syria since biblical times.  In 70 CE when the Temple was destroyed by the Romans in Jerusalem, there were already 10,000 Jews who had moved over to Damascus.  It was only 135 miles or several days by horseback.  For 2,000 years, Jews continued to live in Syria.
Great Synagogue in Aleppo, Syria

A Christian Arab scholar was one who reported about their history.  They were considered to be outside the community.  There were not allowed to carry weapons or to bear witness against Muslims in courts of law or to marry Muslim women.  This is what it's like to be Jewish there.  They were 2nd class citizens called dhimmis.  Because of this they even had to pay more than Muslims in taxes.

But, and this is a big but; they were permitted to keep their religious beliefs and their property.  They could manage the internal affairs of the communities according to their own laws and customs.  It became a refuge for Jews around 1492 who were fleeing from the Spanish Inquisition.
Jewish man of Ottoman Empire
For centuries under Ottoman rule, the Jews were allowed to live fairly secure and often prosperous lives as merchants in their mellahs.  Spanish exiles were responsible for establishing many Jewish religious schools in Damascus and Aleppo, and more than one Jew held the post of Finance Minister.  What else?

However, as all over in the Arab world, being a Jew was precarious.  A 13th century Syrian Arab writer, not Joan Peters, writer, who dug into her research and found this fact, provided an example of the durability and consistency of the Muslims' traditional Koran-inspired demoniacal image of the Jew.  It's the image through which the Prophet Muhammad and his followers sought to avenge the Jews for favoring Judaism over the new 7th century religion of theirs. Here's what they held over the Jews' heads.
"This Jewish group is the most cursed of all God's creation, the most evil-natured, and the most deeply rooted in infidelity and accursedness.  They are the most evil-intentioned of mankind in their deeds, even they are the most ostentatious in humility and self-abasement....When they manage to be alone with a man, they bring him to destruction, they introduce, by trickery, a stupefying drug into his food, and then they kill him."  

All this hatred towards Jews simply because the Jewish tribes in Arabia were not falling head over heels for Islam that Mohammad presented to them.  They were adamant about remaining as Jews.
Dhimmitude continued in 1840 when the Blood Libel was accused of some Jews.  They said that a priest had been killed by the Jews who wanted his blood to make Matzos for Passover.  People were no more sophisticated than they had been in the year 1.  They believed this horrid lie.  The facts are that Jews don't eat any blood under any conditions at all of animals.  They cannot eat all animals, first of all, and only certain ones like cows and sheep and goats, and not a drop of their blood.  So to accuse Jews of using human blood in their cooking is still like saying you can't sail too far in the ocean or you will drop off the edge.  Yet, people still, to this day, will slander Jews with such a belief.  Of all the people in the world to accuse, they are accusing the wrong people for such vomit-wretching ideas of eating human blood.
Syrian soldiers in French Army 1917
The end of WWI caused the Arabs, who aligned with Germany, to lose the war, not just any war but the WORLD WAR, the biggest war the world had ever seen which involved the most lives taken.  The French were given the mandate rights over Syria in 1920.  In 1925, the Druse were revolting against the French, and the Jewish Quarter of Damascus was attacked.  Many Jews were murdered and dozens were wounded.  Home and shops were looted and set afire.  It was like Kristelnacht in Germany.  The French persistently attempted to protect the Jews from the attacks that were increasing brought about by Arab resentment of foreigners in General and of the French in particular.
Jewish Wedding in Aleppo, Syria 
The Arabs' antagonism crystallized hostility.  Anti-Jewish riots were hurled on the Jews of Damascus in 1936.  The Jewish community was supporting the Arab nationalists but it didn't help their position.  Syrian Jews were accused of being Zionists, and the late '30s were full of anti-Jewish violence.  Jews were stabbed by Muslims who were activists, then, possibly acting like terrorists of today.  Demands were made to boycott the Jewish  Quarters.

Damascus became the headquarters of anti-Jewish plotting.  By 1937, a Nazi delegation, talking with its Nazi representative in the Middle East, paid a visit to Damascus.  This caused anti- Jewish propaganda to become even worse and closer ties grew between German and Arab teens and their organizations.  A terrorist group, the Arab National Youth Organization, declared a boycott against the Arab merchants who bought "Zionist goods from Palestine."

The Arab Defense Committee in Damascus warned the Jewish Agency president that "your attitude will lead you and Jews of the East to the worst of situations that has been written in history up to the present."   At the time the Nazi-allied Vichy regime of France was in effect, so local French authorities continued to defend the Jews from Arab extremist attacks, though Jews were dismissed from official posts and were penalized by economic restrictions.  The Allied occupation in 1941 restored equilibrium somewhat, but Nazi propaganda continued.                      
Leader haj Amin al Husseini in Germany with Hitler plotting against Jews
Talk about propaganda that people swallow!  In 1942, the Axis radio in Damascus caused alarm by broadcasting a false report that President Roosevelt of the USA and Churchill of Great Britain had promised Syria to the Jews as part of the post-war Jewish state.
Hotel Beit Wakil in Aleppo, Syria in Jewish Quarter
The Jewish quarter was raided in 1944 and 1945, and the end of World War II in 1945 intensified the persecution and restrictions against the Jews.  Tens of thousands of Syrian Jews had fled between the world wars and after.  The Jews numbered about 35,000 in 1917.  In 1943, about 30,000 still remained in Syria, mostly in Aleppo and Damascus.  The Arabs murdered the director of the Alliance Jewish-affiliated school in June 1945.

In 1945, Syria won its independence, just like Israel did in 1948.  The mandates given in the League of Nations at the end of WWI were finished.  The Jews of Damascus had to deal with the Damascus Mufti who warned at a religious conference that if Jewish immigration into Palestine was not halted, all countries of Islam would declare a "Holy War" against the Jews.  They figured the Jews would turn around in Israel and attack them, and after the way they had been treating Jews, knew they had some bad days coming.

After this speech, a Syrian student mob celebrated a Muslim holiday by desecrating the Great Synagogue of Aleppo.  They beat up Jews at prayer, just like what happened in Jerusalem a month ago, and these Syrians burned their prayer books in the street.
Hafez al Assad of Syria
Hafez al-Assad became President of Syria in 1971 and stayed in till 2000.
 His son, an eye doctor, Bashar Assad, then took over.  Jews had been kept locked up in a Ghetto.  They could not leave.  They carried on life without the comfort of even having telephones.  Finally, the remaining Jews were rescued by a brave Jewish mother from Canada, Judith Feld Carr,  who got them out and most went to Brooklyn, New York.  Some were able to get to Israel, but were not supposed to as the Assads were still afraid of their reprisal against them for their past deeds.

Resource: From Time Immemorial by Joan Peters, page 60-61. Reference 215: Abd al-Rahim al-Jawbari, quoted by CE Bosworth, "Jewish Elements in the Banu Sasan," in MOshe Ma'oz, ed., Studies in the History of the Jewish Communities in Muslim Lands (in preparation), cited by Ma'oz in The Image of the Jew in Official Arab Literature and Communications Media (Shazar Library, U of Jerusalem, 1976, p. 12; also see Stillman, The Jews, pp. 61, 75-77.