BATTLEFIELD DETECTIVES: ISRAELS SIX DAY WAR 3 OF 3

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BATTLEFIELD DETECTIVES: ISRAEL'S SIX DAY WAR PART 3 OF 3

In his book Righteous Victims, controversial Israeli "New Historian" Benny Morris writes:

In three villages southwest of Jerusalem and at Qalqilya, houses were destroyed "not in battle, but as punishment and in order to chase away the inhabitants, contrary to government policy," Dayan wrote in his memoirs. In Qalqilya, about a third of the homes were razed and about twelve thousand inhabitants were evicted, though many then camped out in the environs.111 The evictees in both areas were allowed to stay and later were given cement and tools by the Israeli authorities to rebuild at least some of their dwellings.

But many thousands of other Palestinians now took to the roads. Perhaps as many as seventy thousand, mostly from the Jericho area, fled during the fighting; tens of thousands more left over the following months. Altogether, about one-quarter of the population of the West Bank, about 200-250,000 people, went into exile.

They simply walked to the Jordan River crossings and made their way on foot to the East Bank. It is unclear how many were intimidated or forced out by the Israeli troops and how many left voluntarily, in panic and fear. There is some evidence of IDF soldiers going around with loudspeakers ordering West Bankers to leave their homes and cross the Jordan. Some left because they had relatives or sources of livelihood on the East Bank and feared being permanently cut off.

Thousands of Arabs were taken by bus from East Jerusalem to the Allenby bridge, though there is no evidence of coercion. The free Israeli organized transportation, which began on June 11, 1967, went on for about a month. At the bridge they had to sign a document stating that they were leaving of their own free will. Perhaps as many as seventy thousand people emigrated from the Gaza Strip to Egypt and elsewhere in the Arab world.

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