Answers to Quora Questions by Yair Davidiy
Should Israel claim Jordan as it was part of the Jewish mandate?
Jordan was once known as Transjordan and the two names are used here interchangeably. Technically speaking the area of Transjordan was probably not part of the British Mandate for Palestine as far as the Jews were concerned. The area of Jordan is however in part, or in whole, a region of the Promised Land of Israel. It therefore according to the Bible should be ruled by Jews and settled by them, or at the least by those of Israelite descent. The same applies for Egypt, Saudia, Arabia, Lebanon, Syria, Turkey, and Iraq. All these countries are located, in whole or in part, in areas that pertain to the Greater Land of Israel.
Genesis (NASB) 15:
18 On that day the LORD made a covenant with Abram, saying,
To your descendants I have given this land,
From the river of Egypt as far as the great river, the river Euphrates.
Joshua (NASB) 1:
4 From the wilderness and this Lebanon, even as far as the great river, the river Euphrates, all the land of the Hittites, and as far as the Great Sea toward the setting of the sun will be your territory.
See Also: Greater Israel - Wikipedia
In Ancient Times the region of Jordan had been part of the homeland of the Israelite Tribes of Reuben, Gad, and half-Manasseh, as well as contingents from the other Tribes.
After the return of Jews from exile in Babylon numerous Jews from the Tribes of Judah and Benjamin had settled in the area and in effect ruled over it.
Concerning the specific case of present-day Jordan a little background history may be of interest. The British Mandate for Palestine was affirmed by the League of Nations in 1920. It followed on from the Balfour Declaration. The Balfour Declaration had been issued on November 2, 1917. Before World War-1 the Ottoman Turks had ruled over what later became known as 'Palestine.' They joined the Germans and Austro-Hungarians against Russia of the Czar and the West. In October 1917 the Allies under General Allenby defeated the Ottoman Turks at Beer Sheba. Jerusalem was captured in December, 1917, after the Balfour Declaration had been issued. The Jordan Valley was occupied in March and April 1918. The Battle of Megiddo in September 1918 freed the Galilee. In October 1918 the Turks capitulated. British troops were the ones in control and they kept it that way.
The Balfour Declaration had been issued with the foreknowledge of France and the USA. It had the approval of Australia and New Zealand. The government of Italy and the Pope of Rome had in principle expressed sympathy beforehand. The Balfour Declaration was intended to allocate Palestine as a home for the Jewish people. It contained a caveat about not impairing the rights of non-Jewish inhabitants. This had been added as an afterthought at least partly due to the insistence of assimilated Jews in Britain. Support for the Declaration came from Jewish Zionists who were very active at the time and from British Restorationists. A lot of people in Britain had grown up on the Bible. A pro-Jewish, pro-Bible, tendency had been evident on and off for quite a while. It was felt that restoring the Jews to their land was a Biblical value. In addition to this, the problem of Jewish refugees from persecutions and pogroms had agitated the British public in the past and had come to a head from the 1880s. Balfour at the time had led legislation to restrict the entry of Jewish refugees from Russia to Britain. A Jewish National Home might solve any future Jewish refugee problem. The settlement of Jews in Palestine under the Ottoman Turks had previously been encouraged by the British but had not withstood the test of geopolitical reality. Jewish control of their own land was needed. This was to be preceded by a British aegis in the area.
See: Franz Kobler, "The Vision Was There. A History of the British Movement for the Restoration of the Jews to Palestine," London, 1956.
Meanwhile, other contestants had raised their heads.
The Arabs under Hussein the ruler of Mecca, in what is now Saudi Arabia, had helped the British against the Turks. In exchange, in 1915 he had been promised lands to the east of Damascus, Homs, Hama and Aleppo. This could have meant Jordan and eastern Syria.
In addition there was also the Sykes-Picot Agreement (1915-1916). This was a general understanding between Britain and France concerning a future division of the Ottoman Empire into spheres of influence after the War. It was also contingent on the compliance of Hussein and Russia which (until November 1917) was still in the war. The British had afterwards let the French know that "members of the Jewish community throughout the world have a conscientious and sentimental interest in the future of the country." This could be interpreted to mean that Jewish interests in the Palestine area would probably have an overriding priority above other considerations. The French also were to agree in advance with the Balfour Declaration.
In 1916 Hussein in Mecca had declared himself King of all the Arabs. In March 1924, Hussein went further and proclaimed himself Caliph of all Muslims. Ibn Saud however from Riyadh in the eastern area of Arabia conquered the country and Hussein abdicated. Before all this, faisal, the son of Huissein, had been made King of Syria in 1920 but due to French interference left the country. In 1921 the British had then made him King of Iraq. The area of Jordan had originally been designated tentatively as part of the French sphere of influence. Due to the French having received alternate areas Jordan fell by default to the British. Transjordan was therefore added to the British Mandate for Palestine for administrative purposes. Abdallah, another son of Hussein and brother of Feisal, on 8 March 1920, moved into Transjordan and took control of part of it. The British administered the area alongside Abdallah. The Jews were to be excluded from this region. It is doubtful if anybody had seriously ever intended it for them.
# A formal decision to restrict the Jewish homeland to west of the Jordan was made at the Cairo conference in March 1921, and accordingly a new article was added to the draft mandate text allowing the British government to administer Transjordan separately. The mandate was approved by the League of Nations in July 1922, and in September 1922 the League approved a memorandum spelling out in detail the exclusion of Transjordan from the Jewish homeland provisions. # History of the Jews in Jordan - Wikipedia
The 'Amirate of Trans-Jordan,' was established as a British protectorate on 11 April 1921. The need to expressly exclude Transjordan from the proposed independent Jewish Homeland strengthens the impression that all areas that were not excluded would be candidates for inclusion. This includes what later became known as the 'West Bank.'
The official Zionist establishment reluctantly accepted the decision concerning Transjordan. Nevertheless, Zeev Jabotinsky, a leading Zionist activist, opposed it and accordingly took action:
# A new party, calling itself the "Zionist Revisionists"... assembled in April 1925 and resolved: "the purpose of Zionism is to turn Eretz Israel (including Transjordan) into a Jewish community, under the protection of a guaranteed Jewish majority." | Brit Hatzohar
The Revisionist Zionist leader, Ze'ev Jabotinsky, in 1929 wrote a poem, "Two Banks to the Jordan." It was made into a song that became one of the most known leading songs of the Revisionist Zionist youth movement, Betar. The main political message and theme of the poem is:
"Two Banks has the Jordan. This is ours and, that is as well."
Followers of Jabotinsky later created an underground militia known as the "Irgun." Its symbol depicted the British Mandate territory for Palestine with that of Transjordan attached.
The Hebrew-language Slogan under the map of Israel and Transjordan says, 'Rak Cak!' i.e. 'Only Thusly!'
Adherents of Jabotinsky were to create a political movement and eventually became rulers of the State of Israel.
Menachem Begin was one of them. In 1979 PM Begin surrendered the whole of the Sinai Peninsula to Egypt. He also granted a measure of autonomy to the Palestinians in Judah and Samaria, and in Gaza.
Transjordan remained a British Mandate until 1946. In 1948 Transjordan joined the Arab opponents of the Jews and conquered the Old City of Jerusalem along with the West Bank which it illegally annexed. Abdallah was rumored to intend signing a peace treaty with Israel. He was assassinated in 1951 at the Al Aksa Mosque on the Temple Mount in Jerusalem. His son, Talal, followed him but abdicated due to ill health. Hussein became king in 1953.
King Hussein (reigned 1952-1999)
Abdullah-2, the present monarch
In 1967 Judah and Samaria were liberated by Israeli forces. A War of Attrition involving Jordanian and Palestinian forces followed against Israel. Palestinian terrorist organizations struggled for control of Jordan itself. The war of Black September, 1970, between Jordanian and Palestinians resulted. An attempted invasion by Syria was repulsed. The PLO leader, Yasser Arafat, would later claim that the Jordanian army killed 25,000 Palestinians. Other estimates put the number at between 2,000 and 3,400. The Syrian invasion attempt ended with 120 tanks lost, and around 600 Syrian casualties. Jordanian soldiers suffered around 537 dead.
Jordan renounced its claim to the West Bank in 1988, and signed a peace treaty with Israel in 1994. The population of Jordan is about 10 million (ca. 2020) mostly Sunni Muslims. These include ca. 1.4 million Syrian refugees. The majority of the population of Jordan are Palestinians or of Palestinian descent. According to reports from within Jordan, the country is (or until recently was) ruled mostly by the Royal Family and a coalition of Beduin and Circassion clansmen. The capital, Amman, has about 4 million inhabitants. The country has shale oil reserves, uranium, and other mineral deposits. Compared to other Arab nations it is considered relatively advanced. Jordan suffers from scarcity of water which is relieved with Israeli help.
The Jordanian population is basically anti-Jewish and in effect pro-terror. There are several proofs of this including their idolization of the female arch-terrorist, Ahlam Tamimi.
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