1948 – The massacre of Deir Yasin
On the night of April 9, 1948, the Irgun Zvei Leumi surrounded the village of Deir Yasin, located on the outskirts of Jerusalem. After giving the sleeping residents a 15 minute warning to evacuated, Menachem Begin’s terrorists attacked the village of 700 people, killing 254 mostly old men, women and children and wounding 300 others. Begin’s terrorists tossed many of the bodies in the village well, and paraded 150 captured women and children through the Jewish sectors of Jerusalem.
“Three hundred persons” he said, “were massacred … without any military reason or provocation of any kind; old men women, children, newly-born were savagely murdered with grenades and knives by Jewish troops of the Irgun, entirely under the control of their chiefs.”
The Haganah and the Jewish Agency, which publicly denounced the atrocity after the details had become public several days later, did all they could to prevent the Red Cross from investigating the attack. It wasn’t until three days after the attack that the Zionist armies permitted Jacques de Reynier, chief representative of the International Committee of the Red Cross in Jerusalem, to visit the village by the surrounding Zionist armies.
Ironically, the Deir Yasin villagers had signed a non aggression pact with the leaders of the adjacent Jewish Quarter, Giv’at Shaul and had even refused military personnel from the Arab Liberation Army from using the village as a base.
1948 – Palestinian Refugees
In the period from 1917 to 1949, Israel had occupied 78% of the land of Palestine and evicted or caused to flee more than 750,000 Palestinian refugees to Gaza Strip , West Bank and other Arab countries like Syria , Lebanon, Jordan and others.. It is the plight of the Palestinian refugees, who now number 1.5 millions, and the fate of the Palestinians, who now number 2.5 millions, as a people, which have remained the most pressing problems.
The 1947 resolution on the partition of Palestine came only to complement the unjust laws and military orders enacted by the British mandate government. The partition of Palestine was unfair and illegal because it failed to consult the majority of the Palestinians estimated at that time at 90% of the total population of Palestine. The resolution lacked justice and equality because it gave the Jewish minority about 56% of the land, most of which was located at the fertile coastal areas and 43% to the Palestinian majority, land lying in rugged mountainous areas.
The State of Israel had been all but born and it now only remained for the Zionists to make sure that when it came into official being, on 15th May 1948, it should be as Chaim Weizmann, Israel’s first President, promised in 1921 that “Palestine will be as Jewish as England is English.”
The objective behind the Deir Yassin massacre was to terrify the Arab civilian population, and force them to flee to secure for the Zionists the land without the people. The plan succeeded and they fled in terror, to save their lives. Before May 15th, 1948, while the British Government was still responsible, the Jews had occupied many purely Arab cities like Jaffa and Acre and scores of villages that were in the territory assigned by the U.N. Resolution for the Arab State and evicted more than 300,000 inhabitants from their homes. In an attempt to stem this tide, the neighboring Arab states sent their armies on 15th May 1948 into Palestine. On 15th July 1948 the U.N. imposed a final truce between Israel and the Arabs, by which time Israel had occupied an even larger part of the territory allotted to the Arab State in Palestine.
1982 – Sabra and Shatila massacre
The Sabra and Shatila massacre was carried out in September 1982 by Lebanese Maronite Christian militias against refugee camps. The Maronite forces stood under the direct command of Elie Hobeika, who would later become a longtime Lebanese parliament member and in the 1990s also a cabinet minister. The number of victims of the massacre is estimated at 700-3500.
The camps were externally surrounded by Israeli soldiers throughout the incident, although the Israeli military personnel who were there claimed they had no idea of what was going on inside.
On September 1, the expulsion of the PLO fighters from Beirut was completed. Two days later, Israel deployed its armed forces around the refugee camps. The next day Ariel Sharon, Israeli Defense Minister at the time, stated that 2,000 PLO fighters had remained in Beirut. This claim was disputed by Palestinians. The Israeli Premier Menachem Begin met Gemayel in Nahariya and strongly urged him to sign a peace treaty with Israel. According to some sources, he also demanded continuing the presence of South Lebanon Army in southern Lebanon under control of Major Saad Haddad and action from Gemayel to move on the Palestinian fighters Israel claimed had remained hidden in Lebanon. Gemayel refused Israel’s demands to sign the treaty or to authorize operations to seek out remaining PLO militants.
On September 14, 1982, Gemayel was assassinated in a massive explosion which demolished his headquarters. Eventually, the culprit who confessed to the crime turned out to be a member of the Syrian Social Nationalist Party and an agent of Syrian intelligence. The Palestinian and Muslim leaders denied any connection. In response, the next day, on September 15, the Israeli army reoccupied West Beirut. Estimates place casualties as high as 88 dead and 254 wounded. This Israeli action breached its agreement with the United States not to occupy West Beirut; the US had also given written guarantees that it would ensure the protection of the Muslims of West Beirut. Israel’s occupation also violated its peace agreements with Muslim forces in Beirut and with Syria.
Ariel Sharon and Rafael Eitan then invited Lebanese Phalangist militia units to enter the Sabra and Shatila refugee camps to clean out the PLO fighters. Under the Israeli plan, Israeli soldiers would control the perimeters of the refugee camps and provide logistical support while the Phalangists would enter the camps, find the PLO fighters and hand them over to Israeli forces.
The Israeli military had completely surrounded and sealed off the camps and set up observation posts on the roofs of nearby tall buildings on September 15. The next day Israel announced that it controlled all key points in Beirut. The Israeli military met throughout the day with top Phalangist leaders to arrange the details of the operation.
For the next two nights, from nightfall until late into the night, people reported seeing illuminated flares above the camps, allegedly fired by the Israeli military. On the evening of September 16, 1982, the Phalangist militia, under the command of Elie Hobeika, entered the camps. For the next 36 to 48 hours, the Phalangists massacred the inhabitants of the refugee camps, while the Israeli military guarded the exits and allegedly continued to provide flares by night. A unit of 150 Phalangists was assembled at 4:00 p.m. These militiamen armed with guns, knives and hatchets entered the camps at 6:00 p.m. A Phalangist officer reported 300 killings, including civilians, to the Israeli command post at 8:00 p.m., and further reports of these killings followed through the night. Some of these reports were forwarded to the Israeli government in Jerusalem and were seen by a number of Israel’s senior officials. Israeli soldiers surrounding the camps turned back Palestinians fleeing the camps, as filmed by a Visnews cameraman.
Later in the afternoon, a meeting was held between the Israeli Chief of Staff and the Phalangist staff. According to the Kahan Commission’s report, the Chief of Staff concluded that the Phalange should “continue action, mopping up the empty camps south of Fakahani until tomorrow at 5:00 a.m., at which time they must stop their action due to American pressure.” He claimed that he had “no feeling that something irregular had occurred or was about to occur in the camps.” At this meeting, he also agreed to provide the militia with a tractor, supposedly to demolish buildings.
On Friday, September 17, while the camps still were sealed off, a few independent observers managed to enter. Among them were a Norwegian journalist and diplomat Gunnar Flakstad, who observed Phalangists during their cleanup operations, removing dead bodies from destroyed houses in the Shatila camp”. The Phalangists did not exit the camps at 5:00 a.m. on Saturday as ordered. They forced the remaining survivors to march out of the camps, randomly killing individuals, and sending others to the stadium for interrogations; this went on for the entire day. The militia finally left the camps at 8:00 a.m. on September 18. The first foreign journalists allowed into the camps at 9:00 a.m. found hundreds of bodies scattered about the camp, many of them mutilated. The first official news of the massacre was broadcast around noon.
1990 – The massacre of Al-Aqsa Mosque
Several days before the events of the massacre began, the “Temple Trustees” group distributed a statement to the media on the occasion of a religious festival of theirs which they call “the Throne Festival”. In the statement the organization announced that it intended to stage a march to the Temple Mount (or so they call it). The statement called upon Jews to participate in this march since, according to the statement, it would involve the decisive act of placing the foundation stone for what is called “the Third Temple.” In addition, the founder of the organization, Ghershoun Salmoun, announced that “the Arab-Islamic occupation of the temple area must come to an end, and the Jews must renew their profound ties to the sacred area.” The march, in which 200,000 Jews took part, headed toward al-Aqsa Mosque in order for “the foundation stone” of the so-called “Third Temple” to be put in place.
On Monday, October 8, 1990 at 10:00 A.M., half-hour before the beginning of the massacre, Israeli occupation forces began placing military barriers along various roads leading to Jerusalem in order to prevent Palestinians from getting to the city. They also closed the doors of the mosque itself and forbid Jerusalem residents to go in. However, thousands had already gathered inside the mosque before this time in response to calls from the imam of the mosque and the Islamic movement to protect the mosque and to prevent the “Temple Trustees” from storming it.
When the Muslim worshippers began resisting the Israeli group to prevent them from placing the “foundation stone” for their so-called temple, Israeli occupation forces began carrying out the massacre, using all the weapons such as poison gas bombs, automatic weapons, military helicopters, etc. The soldiers and Jewish settlers where firing live ammunition in the form of a continuous spray of machine-gun fire. The result was that thousands of Palestinian worshippers of various ages found themselves in a mass death trap. Twenty-three Palestinians were killed, and 850 others were wounded to varying degrees. The Israeli soldiers began firing at 10:30 A.M. and stopped 35 minutes later.