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This began to change with the onset of the Zionist movement, because the Zionists rejected the right of the Palestinians to self-determination and wanted Palestine for their own, to create a “Jewish State” in a region where Arabs were the majority and owned most of the land.For instance, after a series of riots in Jaffa in 1921 resulting in the deaths of 47 Jews and 48 Arabs, the occupying British held a commission of inquiry, which reported their finding that “there is no inherent anti-Semitism in the country, racial or religious.” Rather, Arab attacks on Jewish communities were the result of Arab fears about the stated goal of the Zionists to take over the land.
In the whole of Palestine, Arabs owned 85 percent of the land, while Jews owned less than 7 percent, which remained the case up until the time of Israel’s creation. The truth is that no Arab could be reasonably expected to accept such an unjust proposal.
For political commentators today to describe the Arabs’ refusal to accept a recommendation that their land be taken away from them, premised upon the explicit rejection of their right to self-determination, as a “missed opportunity” represents either an astounding ignorance of the roots of the conflict or an unwillingness to look honestly at its history.
The fact of the matter is that it was Israel that fired the first shot of the “Six Day War”.
Early on the morning of June 5, Israel launched fighters in a attack on Egypt (then the United Arab Republic), and successfully decimated the Egyptian air force while most of its planes were still on the ground.
It must be emphasized that the Zionists had no right to most of the land they declared as part of Israel, while the Arabs did.
This war, therefore, was not, as is commonly asserted in mainstream commentary, an act of aggression by the Arab states against Israel.“The position is entirely different in the Zionist colonies.”The U. became involved when the British sought to wash its hands of the volatile situation its policies had helped to create, and to extricate itself from Palestine. Moreover, General Assembly resolutions are not considered legally binding (only Security Council resolutions are). But characterizing this as an “opportunity” for the Arabs is patently ridiculous.The Partition plan was in no way, shape, or form an “opportunity” for the Arabs.It is effectively to claim that Israel had a “right” to ethnically cleanse Palestine, while Arabs had no right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness in their own homes, on their own land.The constant use of the term “right to exist” in discourse today serves one specific purpose: It is designed to obfuscate the reality that it is the Jews that have denied the Arab right to self-determination, and not vice versa, and to otherwise attempt to legitimize Israeli crimes against the Palestinians, both historical and contemporary.First of all, as already noted, Arabs were a large majority in Palestine at the time, with Jews making up about a third of the population by then, due to massive immigration of Jews from Europe (in 1922, by contrast, a British census showed that Jews represented only about 11 percent of the population).Additionally, land ownership statistics from 1945 showed that Arabs owned more land than Jews in every single district of Palestine, including Jaffa, where Arabs owned 47 percent of the land while Jews owned 39 percent – and Jaffa boasted the highest percentage of Jewish-owned land of any district.In an instant, the Zionists had declared that the majority Arabs of Palestine were now second-class citizens in the new “Jewish State”.The Arabs, needless to say, did not passively accept this development, and neighboring Arab countries declared war on the Zionist regime in order to prevent such a grave injustice against the majority inhabitants of Palestine.In other districts, Arabs owned an even larger portion of the land.At the extreme other end, for instance, in Ramallah, Arabs owned 99 percent of the land. partition recommendation had called for more than half of the land of Palestine to be given to the Zionists for their “Jewish State”.