Terrorism in the Middle East Conflict: An Open Letter

One of the primary reasons given by Israel for its off-and-on refusals to negotiate with the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) and Yasser Arafat’s Palestinian Authority (PA) is the use of terrorism by the PLO and militant organs of the PA. A brief, historical summary of terrorism used by Zionists and Israel in the Middle East Conflict reveals that Israel has no justifiable right to cite the use of terrorism by others as a basis for refusing to negotiate with the PLO, PA, Yasser Arafat or anyone else. Such an historical summary would include the following facts.

From 1943 to 1948, Menachem Begin – who later became prime minister of Israel – commanded the infamous Irgun Zvai Leumi (IZL), an underground terrorist group dedicated to the overthrow of the British Mandate Authority and the expulsion of the native Arabs from Palestine in order to establish therein an exclusive Jewish state. On July 22, 1946, Menachem Begin’s IZL blew up the King David Hotel in Jerusalem, killing over ninety people, fifteen of whom were Jewish. Haganah, the armed militia of the Jewish Agency, was implicated in this horrific, terrorist attack on innocent civilians.[1]

The Stern Gang was another Jewish terrorist group dedicated to driving out non-Jews from Palestine and setting up an exclusive, Jewish state. On November 6, 1944, the Stern Gang assassinated Lloyd Moyne, the British Resident Minister in Cairo, Egypt.[2]

Many more cold-blooded acts of horror were to follow before Israel would establish herself by terrorism in the so-called “Holy Land.” On April 9, 1948, Menachem Begin’s IZL attacked the small village of Deir Yassin, murdered 254 Arab men, women and children (some of the women were pregnant) and then sought to cover up the foul deeds by throwing some of the bodies into a well.[3]

One of the more ignoble acts of the Stern Gang was the assassination of Count Folke Bernadotte on September 17, 1948, while he was on a United Nations peace mission in Palestine.[4]

And then there were the Zionist robberies in 1948 of Barclay’s Bank in Tel Aviv and Nablus for the purchase of more weapons of terrorism. “In Nablus they [the Zionists rebels] twice raided Barclays Bank under the noses of British soldiers.”[5]

Between July 2 and July 27, 1954, a network of Jewish spies in Egypt fire-bombed American and British cultural and informational centers, British-owned theatres, an Egyptian post office and rail station and then attempted to shift the blame for these terrorist acts upon the Muslin Brothers. This series of terrorist acts became know as the “Lavon Affair,” the purpose of which was to sabotage the good relations that existed between Egypt and the Western nations of the United States and England.[6]

It was Zionist terrorism that promoted the mass exodus of Palestinians from their homeland, Palestine, driving them into exile and refugee camps in Jordan, Syria and elsewhere. Since 1967, the Israelis have blown up over 25,000 Palestinian homes and have confiscated the property. Israel continues to build exclusively Jewish settlements in occupied Arab lands in violation of internationally recognized treaties which Israel herself has signed. In vain, past U.S. presidents, including President Jimmy Carter, have denounced these Jewish settlements in Arab lands as illegal, obstacles to peace and detrimental to our own national interests. In short, terrorism gave birth to Israel; terrorism is Israel’s chief policy maker. Thus, it is most strange and hypocritical to hear and see Israel’s leaders decrying terrorism while making insipid, platitudinous speeches at the Wailing Wall. Referring to Israel’s “ugly, oppressive side of its nature which it had generally managed to hide from the world”, David Hirst stated that “investigative zeal has never been the hallmark of Western newsmen based in Israel.”[7]

Virtually all world leaders acknowledge that the primary cause of the Middle East Conflict lies in Israel’s occupation of Arab land and expulsion of thousands of Arabs from their native homeland – Palestine – resulting in the massive Palestinian refugee problem. In his book, David Hirst documents Israel’s “insatiable Zionist appetite for Arab land.”[8]

On June 8, 1967, Israeli jet aircraft and torpedo-carrying gunboats attacked the U.S.S. Liberty, while it was cruising in international waters off the Sinai Peninsula and flying a large American flag, killing 34 Americans and wounded another 171. When Captain William McGonagle ordered life rafts put overboard, an Israeli gunboat crew promptly shot holes in the life rafts to prevent their use.[9]

Because of the inordinate Zionist political and monetary power in domestic American politics, the United States has shown itself as unable or unwilling to be an even-handed, unbiased broker in the Arab-Jewish, Middle East Conflict. International intervention and resolution of this conflict on the bases of UN Resolutions 242, 338 and 194 appear necessary now more than ever in view of the terrible blood-letting in the first quarter of 2002. A majority of nations has indicated that the above-cited UN resolutions are as just and even-handed as is humanly possible, given historical circumstances.

Two centuries ago the English statesman and orator, Edmund Burke, wrote:

“The use of force alone is but temporary. It may subdue for a moment; but it does not remove the necessity of subduing again; and a nation is not governed, which is perpetually to be conquered.”

Sooner or later Israel will have to come to terms with herself and her Arab neighbors. The course of force and terrorism that she has followed for the past 54 years is nothing less than suicidal, prompting former U.S. Under Secretary of State George W. Ball to publish an article in Foreign Affairs entitled, “How to Save Israel in Spite of Herself.” The moral and economic costs of the Arab-Israel wars will continue to mount until world opinion pressures Israel and the United States to listen to the voice of reason instead of the fundamentalist readings of the Bible which only invite fundamentalist readings of the Koran.[10]


[1] Lilienthal, Afred M., The Zionist Connection (New York: Dodd, Mead & Company, 1978), pp. 58, 153, 279, 346-347, 350, 359, 363, 687.

[2] ibid, 214, 359

[3] ibid, 153-157, 279, 298, 299, 303, 349, 350, 353, 360, 398.

[4] ibid, 156-157, 191, 360, 398, 422.

[5] Hirst, David, The Gun and the Olive Branch – The Roots of Violence in the Middle East (New York and London: Harcourt Brace Jovanovich, 1977), p. 90.

[6]  ibid, pp. 164-170.

The Lebanese adventure

[7] ibid, p. 343.

[8] ibid, p. 342

[9] Ennes, James M. Jr., Assault on the Liberty (New York: Random House, 1979). See the URL at: http://www.ussliberty.com

[10] See I. F. Stone’s article, “Bible Diplomacy,” Washington Post, Aug. 19, 1977.

Other suggested readings are Livia Rokach’s Israel’s Sacred Terrorism (Belmont, MA: Association of Arab-American University Graduates, Inc., 1980), a documentary based upon the personal diary of Moshe Sharrett, Israel’s first foreign minister, Naeim Giladi’s book, Ben Gurion’s Scandals, (Flushing, NY: Glilit Publishing Co., Inc. 1992), Edwin M. Wright’s Torah, Zionism and Palestine (Houston: Americans for Middle East Peace, Inc., 1983; an e-book of the original is available at http://www.pitmanbuck.net ), and Israel Shahak’s Jewish History, Jewish Religion (London & Sterling, VA: Pluto Press, 1994).