Jerusalem News (7 January, 2013, Tevet 25, 5773)
1. Efraim Karsh: The Historical Improvement in Arab Living Conditions due to Zionist Jewish Influence and the Ungrateful Arab Response
2. The Difference Between Northern Cyprus and Judea, Samaria by Dore Gold
3. Feiglin Urges Giving Arabs a $500,000 One-Way Ticket by Tzvi Ben Gedalyahu
1. Efraim Karsh: The Historical Improvement in Arab Living Conditions due to Zionist Jewish Influence and the Ungrateful Arab Response
From: Middle East Forum <email@example.com>
Israel's Arabs: Deprived or Radicalized? by Efraim Karsh, Israel Affairs, January 2013, pp. 1-19
Arabs and Jews in the Holy Land
The inflow of Jewish immigrants and capital after World War I revived Palestine's hitherto moribund condition. If prior to the war, some 2,500-3,000 Arabs, or one out of 200-250 inhabitants, emigrated from the country every year, this rate was slashed to about 800 per annum between 1920 and 1936 while Palestine's Arab population rose from about 600,000 to some 950,000 owing to the substantial improvement in socioeconomic conditions attending the development of the Jewish National Home. The British authorities acknowledged as much in a 1937 report by a commission of enquiry headed by Lord Peel...
Raising the standard of living of the Palestinian Arabs well above that in the neighbouring Arab states, the general fructifying effect of the import of Jewish capital into the country was not limited to the upper classes, or the effendis, who 'sold substantial pieces of land [to the Jews] at a figure far above the price it could have fetched before the War', but extended to the country's predominantly rural population, the fellaheen, who 'are on the whole better off than they were in 1920'. The expansion of Arab industry and agriculture, especially in the field of citrus growing, Palestine's foremost export product, was largely financed by the capital thus obtained, and Jewish know-how did much to improve Arab cultivation. In the two decades between the world wars, Arab-owned citrus plantations grew six-fold, as did vegetable-growing lands, while the number of olive groves quadrupled and that of vineyards increased threefold.
No less remarkable were the advances in Arab social welfare. Perhaps most significantly, mortality rates in the Muslim population dropped sharply and life expectancy rose from 37.5 years in 1926-27 to 50 in 1942-44 (compared with 33 in Egypt). ...the rate of natural increase leapt upward by a third...
That nothing remotely akin to this was taking place in the neighbouring British-ruled Arab countries, not to mention India, can be explained only by the decisive Jewish contribution to state revenues (in 1944-45, for example, the Jewish community paid 68% of Palestine's income tax compared with 15% by the twice larger Arab community). In addition, the extensive Jewish public health provision greatly benefited the country's Arab population. Jewish reclamation and anti-malaria work slashed the prevalence of this lethal disease ...while health institutions, founded with Jewish funds primarily to serve the Jewish National Home, also served the Arab population. It is hardly surprising therefore that the greatest reductions in Arab mortality, as well as the rise in the quality and standard of living, occurred in localities in or near those in which Jewish enterprise had been most pronounced.
Had the vast majority of Palestinian Arabs been left to their own devices, they would most probably have been content to get on with their lives and take advantage of the opportunities afforded by the growing Jewish presence in the country. Throughout the British Mandate era (1920-48), periods of peaceful coexistence were far longer than those violent eruptions and the latter were the work of a small fraction of Palestinian Arabs.
But then, rather than follow the wishes of its constituents, the corrupt and extremist Palestinian Arab leadership, headed since the early 1920s by the Jerusalem Mufi Hajj Amin Husseini, embarked on a relentless campaign to obliterate the Jewish national revival, which culminated in the violent attempt, supported by the entire Arab world, to destroy the state of Israel at birth. In the mournful words of the Peel commission,
We have found that, though the Arabs have benefited by the development of the country owing to Jewish immigration, this has had no conciliatory effect. On the contrary, with almost mathematical preecision the betterment of the economic situation in Palestine meant the deterioration of the political situation.
The Arab Minority in the Jewish State
The end of the 1948 war found the Palestinian-Arab community profoundly shattered. Of the 750,000 Arab residents of the territory that came to be Israel, only 158,000 had stayed put through the hostilities; at the state's founding, they formed 13.6% of the total population. But these numbers did not stay low for long. Thanks to remarkable fertility rates, and despite successive waves of Jewish immigration into Israel, the proportion of Arabs grew steadily over the decades. By the end of 2009, Israel's Arab minority had leapt eightfold in number to over 1.6 million, or 20.6% of the state's total population.
...Arabs living in the Jewish state have made astounding social and economic progress. Far from lagging behind, their rate of development has often surpassed that of the Jewish sector, with the result that the gap between the two communities has steadily narrowed.
Health statistics are but one indicator. Perhaps most significantly, mortality rates among Israeli Arabs have fallen by over two-thirds since the establishment of the Jewish state, while life expectancy has increased 30 years, reaching 78.5 (women 80.7, men 76.3) in 2009. At the end of the 1940s, life expectancy of Israeli Arabs was fifteen years lower than that of their Jewish counterparts; by the 1970s, the gap had decreased to 2-3 years and has remained virtually unchanged since then (3.7 years in 2009). Not only does this compare favourably with the Arab and Muslim worlds, but the average Israeli Arab male can expect to live longer than his American (76 years in 2007) and many European counterparts.
Thanks to Israel's medical and health-education programs, infant-mortality rates have similarly been slashed... slightly above the US mortality rate and much lower than that of the neighbouring Middle Eastern states ...
No less remarkable have been the advances in education. Since Israel's founding, while the Arab population has grown tenfold, the number of Arab schoolchildren has multiplied by a factor of 40.... the proportion of women with more than eight years of schooling rose nearly sevenfold - from 9% to 59%).
Still more dramatic has been the story in higher education where the numbers of Arab graduates multiplied fifteen times between 1961 and 2001.
Last but not least, during Israel's first fifty years of existence, adult illiteracy rates among Israeli Arabs dropped from 57.2% (79% among women) to 7.7% (11.7% among women). This not only places Israeli Arabs miles ahead of their brothers in the Arab world - in Morocco illiteracy is at 44%, in Egypt at 38%, in Iraq at 22% - but reflects a pace of improvement nearly double that of the Jewish sector.
Standard of living? ... Arabs experienced a steep rise in earnings and a visible improvement in their material circumstances. More Arabs than Jews have come to own the dwelling they live in - 82.2% vs. 68.8% in 1997...
Contrary to the standard image of cramped neighbourhoods and acute land shortages, population density in Arab localities is substantially lower on average than in equivalent Jewish locales.
The truth is that the growing defiance of the state, its policies, and its values was not rooted in socioeconomic deprivation but rather in the steady radicalization of the Israeli Arab community by its ever more militant leadership, not unlike their mandatory predecessors.
The process began with the Six-Day war of June 1967. In the relatively relaxed aftermath of that conflict, Israeli Arabs came into renewed direct contact with their cousins in the West Bank and Gaza as well as with the wider Arab world. Family and social contacts broken in 1948 were restored, and a diverse network of social, economic, cultural, and political relations was formed. For the first time since 1948, Israeli Muslims were allowed by Arab states to participate in the sacred pilgrimage to Mecca and Medina, thus breaking an unofficial ostracism and restoring a sense of self-esteem and pan-Arab belonging - and encouraging a correlative degree of estrangement from Israel....
Six years later came the Yom Kippur war, shattering Israel's image as an invincible military power and tarnishing its international reputation. ...
...If the intifada strained Arab-Jewish relations within Israel to their limits (till then), other factors contributed to the worsening of the situation as well. One was the rising power and influence of the Islamist movement in Israel and the disputed territories, which injected into the conflict a religious element that had largely lain dormant ever since 1948. Another was the growing 'post-Zionist' trend among educated Israelis, which, by creating the impression of a fatigued society ready to pay any price for respite, emboldened the most radical elements on the Arab side to dream of delivering a final blow.
Yet it was the delusional the embrace of the Oslo accords, signed in 1993 between Israel and the PLO, despite the latter's brazen and continual flouting of its contractual obligations, that did the greatest damage. In recognizing the PLO as 'the representative of the Palestinian people', the Rabin government effectively endorsed that organization's claim of authority over a substantial number of Israeli citizens and gave it carte blanche to interfere in Israel's domestic affairs. Such a concession would be a sure recipe for trouble even under the most amicable of arrangements; made to an irredentist party still officially committed to the destruction of its 'peace partner', it proved nothing short of catastrophic.
And so it goes. With Israeli Arab leaders bent on blaming the Jewish state for every conceivable ill, including most recently the September 2012 anti-Islamic video that allegedly sparked the deadly riots across the Muslim world; with 40 per cent of Israeli Arabs denying the existence of the Holocaust, and one in two refusing to send their children to Jewish schools or have Jewish neighbours, is there any way to encourage them to normalize their minority status within the Jewish state, intensify their identification with its destiny, and thereby help convince their Palestinian cousins to reconcile themselves as well to its permanent existence?
2. The Difference Between Northern Cyprus and Judea, Samaria
by Dore Gold
January 4, 2013 4:55 pm7 comments
... many European buyers after 2002 have been flocking to Northern Cyprus, where a villa with a swimming pool can be bought at discount prices.
The main legal question that is not addressed with this new European property boom is the legal status of the area where these new homes are being built. It should be recalled that in 1974 the Turkish army invaded Cyprus, which had been an independent state since 1960 and took over 37 percent of the island. Tens of thousands of Greek Cypriots were expelled in this period in what they viewed was a deliberate policy of ethnic cleansing by the Turkish army. ...
The Turkish Cypriots declared their independence in 1983 by forming the 'Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus,' an act that the U.N. condemned as 'null and void.' Over the years, an estimated 160,000 'settlers' who came from Turkey moved into Northern Cyprus. In many cases, properties that had been left behind by Greek Cypriot refugees were given by the Northern Cyprus administration to Turkish Cypriots and to the Turkish settlers, who sold them to European buyers. To date, some 5,000 British citizens have purchased homes in Northern Cyprus despite it being a clear-cut case of an 'occupied territory.' According to a BBC report, as many as 10,000 foreigners have bought up former Greek Cypriot properties in Northern Cyprus.
Is there any basis for comparing Northern Cyprus to the situation with the West Bank?
A number of glaring differences stand out. First, Israel entered the West Bank in a war of self-defense in 1967 when it faced an Arab war coalition that was massing forces along its borders. In contrast, the circumstances of the Turkish invasion were very different. Turkey did not face imminent attack from Cyprus, but rather was concerned with intercommunal tensions in Cyprus.
Second, there was no established sovereignty in the West Bank in 1967 that Israel violated; there was no Palestinian state while Jordan's claim to sovereignty was rejected by most of the international community except for Britain and Pakistan. Moreover, there were earlier Jewish rights under the British Mandate, which never expired. Looking at the Cypriot case, prior to the Turkish invasion in 1974, the Republic of Cyprus was the undisputed sovereign over the entire island, including the area of Northern Cyprus.
Finally, the resolutions adopted by the U.N. Security Council in the two conflicts were very different. In the aftermath of the Six-Day War, the U.N. Security Council adopted Resolution 242 which did not call for an Israeli withdrawal from all the territories it captured as a result of the conflict. The resolution suggested that the old armistice lines be replaced with secure and recognized borders.
Yet in the case of Northern Cyprus, the U.N. did not qualify its demand for a Turkish withdrawal by allowing, for example, the Turkish military to remain in even part of the island. Looking at these different considerations, it appeared that the international community should have judged the dispute over Northern Cyprus far more severely than the way it viewed the dispute over the West Bank, where Israel had multiple rights that it could exercise if it decided to do so.
However, in practice, that was not the case. As usual, on Dec. 10, the European Union declared yet again that it was 'deeply dismayed by and strongly opposes Israeli plans to expand settlements in the West Bank, including in east Jerusalem.' Its statement made wild charges that Israeli construction in E1 'could also entail forced transfer of civilian population.'
It finally added that 'the European Union reiterates that settlements are illegal under international law and constitute an obstacle to peace.' Ironically, while the EU releases harsh statements of this sort against Israel for any construction activity in West Bank settlements, it has nothing to say about tens of thousands of Turkish settlers that have moved into Northern Cyprus.
Nor are European governments condemning their own citizens who are seeking to build beachfront villas with swimming pools in territory that is technically still under Turkish occupation.
3. Feiglin Urges Giving Arabs a $500,000 One-Way Ticket
By Tzvi Ben Gedalyahu
Likud Knesset Member candidate Moshe Feiglin, indicted for trying to prostate himself in prayer on the Temple Mount, wants to pay each Palestinian Authority Arab $500,000 to leave Israel.
"The country pays 10% of its gross national product every year to maintain the 'two-state solution' and the Oslo Accords," Feiglin said.
He explained the money is for the security fences and checkpoints, Iron Dome missile defense systems and guards whom he said are posted 'at every cafe.'
Feiglin said the same money could be used to pay every PA Arab half a million dollars to leave Israel. This idea was broached several weeks ago by columnist and political scientist Dr. Martin Sherman.
Reports, generally not disseminated by mainstream media, have shown that thousands of PA Arabs leave for other countries every year. Feiglin said polls of Arabs in Judea, Samaria and Gaza 'show that 80% in Gaza and 65% in Judea and Samaria want to immigrate' and that paying them to do so is the "perfect solution."