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The Palestinian ethnic cleansing occurred over a period of about 3 months. It began with the adoption of Plan Dalet by Ben Gurion in Tel Aviv around March 15, 1948, two months before Independence. In the two month period before Independence, 250,000 Palestinians were ethnically cleansed forceably and through fear stemming from village massacres of which Deir Yassin is the best known, by the Haganah and the terrorist groups, the Irgun, Stern Gang, and others. The remaining Palestinians were ethnically cleansed after Independence.

The so-called Jewish "ethnic cleansing" from Arab countries, by contrast, would have had to occur over a period of 20 years, and if you include the period of the Iran revolution, it is 30 years. The events you said occurred did occur, but they were sporadic, occurred over a 20 year period, may have been in some cases induced by Israeli agents, and in only one country was there a government sponsored forced emigration (again, I don't recall the country). At the same time, Israel provided incentives to induce people to emigrate because it needed population.

I know that there is an effort to create a Jewish Nakba, an ethnic cleansing, in order to justify the Palestinian Nakba that occurred long before it, but I don't believe that most people would use the term ethnic cleansing to characterize the emigration of Jews from Arabic countries over two decades. It use of course is an attempt at tit-for-tat, which then justifies the Palestinian ethnic cleansing and a nonclaim by Palestinian refugees. In fact, it is quite evident to most that the Palestinian Nakba did increase antiSemitism in Arab countries, but there was always some around anyway.

And yes, there were attempts to stop Jewish Arabs from leaving for Israel for the very reason that Israel was inducing or encouraging their emigration. It was believed that the emigration was assisting in the further disenfranchisement of the Palestinians of their homes and land. No doubt that it was widely known that Israel then proceeded to attempt to erase the memory of the Palestinians by bulldozing most of the 470 villages emptied of their residents, into the ground, and just changing the names of the others that were then populated by Jewish emigrees. In many cases, Palestinian family homes were just appropriated. I have heard of complaints by Israeli Palestinians, citizens, who are not permitted to visit their villages, who know that their family home was taken over by new Israeli emigrants. Many of Israeli Palestinians, citizens, are actually internal refugees from their family villages. Jewish emigrees can take their homes, but they cannot even visit them.

There is no tit-for-tat

by shergald on Tue Sep 2nd, 2008 at 03:46:59 PM EST
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