Zionist Myths

The Arabs started all the wars: 1948


Since the establishment of Israel there have been five major wars
between Arabs and the Israelis. These wars occured in 1948, 1956,
1967, 1973 and 1982. Israel claims that the Arabs started all the
wars. Although there has been low-intensity conflict in the
intervening years and major conflagrations during the "War of
Attrition" in 1969-1970 and the 1978 invasion of Lebanon, massive
civil disobedience during the Uprising of 1988, and in 2000-2001
during the Al-Aqsa Intifada, it is these five wars Israel refers to
when it makes its claims, creating the impression that Israel has only
acted "in self-defence".

The roots of the 1948 war go as far back as the first recognition on
the part of the Palestinians that the Zionists wished to establish a
Jewish state on their land. In late 1947 the United Nations proposed
that Palestine be divided into a Palestinian Arab state and a Jewish
state. The UN Partition Plan recommended that 55 percent of Palestine,
and the most fertile region, be given to the Jewish settlers who
compromised 30 percent of the population. The remaining 45 percent of
Palestine was to comprise a home for the other 70 percent of the
population who were Palestinians. The Palestinians rejected the plan
because it was unfair.

Israel and its supporters claim that the Arabs first attacked in
Janurary 1948 and then invaded Israel in May 1948.


The truth is that by May 1948 Zionist forces had already invaded and
occupied large parts of the land which had been allocated to the
Palestinians by the UN Partition Plan. In January 1948 Israel did not
yet exist.

The evidence that Israel started the 1948 war comes from Zionist
sources. The History of the Palmach which was released in portions in
the 1950s (and in full in 1972) details the efforts made to attack the
Palestinian Arabs and secure more territory than alloted to the Jewish
state by the UN Partition Plan (Kibbutz Menchad Archive, Palmach
Archive, Efal, Israel).

Already, Zionist forces were implementing their "Plan Dalet" to

"control the area given to us [the Zionists] by the U.N. in addition
to areas occupied by Arabs which were outside these borders and the
setting up of forces to counter the possible invasion of Arab armies
after May 15" (Qurvot 1948, p. 16, which covers the operations of
Haganah and Palmach, see also Ha Sepher Ha Palmach, The Book of

1. Operation Nachson, 1 April 1948
2. Operation Harel, 15 April 1948
3. Operation Misparayim, 21 April 1948
4. Operation Chametz, 27 April 1948
5. Operation Jevuss, 27 April 1948
6. Operation Yiftach, 28 April 1948
7. Operation Matateh, 3 May 1948
8. Operation Maccabi, 7 May 1948

9. Operation Gideon, 11 May 1948
10. Operation Barak, 12 May 1948
11. Operation Ben Ami, 14 May 1948
12. Operation Pitchfork, 14 May 1948
13. Operation Schfifon, 14 May 1948

The operations 1-8 indicate operations carried out before the entry of
the Arab forces inside the areas allotted by the UN to the Arab state.
It has to be noted that of thirteen specific full-scale operations
under Plan Dalet eight were carried out outside the area "given" by
the UN to the Zionists.

Following is a list drawn from the New York Times of the major
military operations the Zionists mounted before the British evacuated
Palestine and before the Arab forces entered Palestine:

· Qazaza (21 Dec. 1947)
· Sa'sa (16 Feb. 1948)
· Haifa (21 Feb. 1948)
· Salameh (1 March 1948)
· Biyar Adas (6 March 1948)
· Qana (13 March 1948)
· Qastal (4 April 1948)
· Deir Yassin (9 April 1948)
· Lajjun (15 April 1948)
· Saris (17 April 1948)
· Tiberias (20 April 1948)
· Haifa (22 April 1948)
· Jerusalem (25 April 1948)
· Jaffa (26 April 1948)
· Acre (27 April 1948)
· Jerusalem (1 May 1948)
· Safad (7 May 1948)
· Beisan (9 May 1948).

David Ben-Gurion confirms this in an address delivered to American
Zionists in Jerusalem on 3 September 1950:

"Until the British left, no Jewish settlement, however remote, was
entered or seized by the Arabs, while the Haganah, under severe and
frequent attack, captured many Arab positions and liberated Tiberias
and Haifa, Jaffa and Safad" (Ben-Gurion, Rebirth and Destiny of Israel
(N.Y.: Philosophical Library, 1954, p. 530).

Although late PM Ben-Gurion speaks of "liberating" Jaffa it was
alloted to the Palestinians by the UN Partition Plan.

Late PM Menachem Begin adds:

"In the months preceding the Arab invasion, and while the five Arab
states were conducting preparations, we continued to make sallies into
Arab territory. The conquest of Jaffa stands out as an event of
first-rate importance in the struggle for Hebrew independence early in
May, on the eve [that is, before the alleged Arab invasion] of the
invasion by the five Arab states" (Menachem Begin, The Revolt, Nash,
1972, p. 348)

On 12 December 1948 David Ben Gurion confirmed the fact that the
Zionists started the war in 1948:

"As April began, our War of Independence swung decisively from defense
to attack. Operation 'Nachson'...was launched with the capture of Arab
Hulda near where we stand today and of Deir Muheisin and culminated in
the storming of Qastel, the great hill fortress near Jerusalem" (Ben
Gurion, Rebirth and Destiny of Israel (N.Y.: Philosophical Library,
1954, p. 106).

Israeli historians have themselves refuted the claim that the Arabs
started the 1948 war. Benny Morris uncovered a report from the Israeli
Defense Force Intelligence Branch (30 June 1948) that shows a
deliberate Israeli policy to attack the Arabs should they resist and
expel the Palestinians (Benny Morris, "The Causes and Character of the
Arab Exodus from Palestine: the Israel Defense Forces Intelligence
Branch Analysis of June 1948", Middle Eastern Studies, XXII, January
1986, pp. 5-19).


In sum, it is not true that the Arabs "invaded Israel" in 1948.
First, Israel did not exist at the time of the alleged invasion as an
established state with recognised bounderies. When the Zionist leaders
established Israel on 15 May 1948 they purposely declined to declare
the bounderies of the new state in order to allow for future

Secondly, the only territory to which the new state of Israel had even
a remote claim was that alloted to the Jewish state by the UN
Partition Plan. But the Zionists had already attacked areas that were
alloted to the Palestinian Arab state.

Thirdly, those areas which the Arab states purportedly "invaded" were,
in fact, exclusively areas alloted to the Palestinian Arab state
proposed by the UN Partition Plan. The so-called Arab invasion was a
defensive attempt to hold on to the areas alloted by the Partition
Plan for the Palestinian state.

Finally, the commander of Jordan's Arab Legion, was under orders not
to enter the areas alloted to the Jewish state (Sir John Bagot Glubb,
"The Battle for Jerusalem", Middle East International, May 1973).
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