Thursday, November 29, 2007

On this day 60 years ago....

On November 29, 1947, the U.N. General Assembly approved a proposal to partition Palestine into two states, one Arab and the other Jewish.

Strange, isn’t it, that sixty years later there is only one state.

(map: Truman Library)

Update: In this morning’s Washington Post: "1973 U.S. Cable on Mideast Mirrors Current Events": “A March 1973 State Department cable released yesterday by the National Archives recounts a promise by Saudi Arabia's King Faisal that terrorist threats to U.S. interests could be resolved as soon as Washington pressed Israel to withdraw from territory it had seized.”


Chris Borland said...

Very interesting, Gail. I'd never heard of this, till this morning.

Does anyone know ... whatever happened to U.N. Resolution 181?

We wouldn't be in the pickle we're in today, if this had been followed through (what a waste).

Anonymous said...

Here's what the Israelis say:

Israelis look back at partition plan
E-mail News Brief
Tell the Editors

Published: 11/29/2007

Israelis marked 60 years since the United Nations approved the creation of a Jewish state.

Israeli newspapers and broadcasters carried extensive commentary Thursday marking the 60th anniversary of the passing of U.N. General Assembly Resolution 181, which called for the partition of British Mandate Palestine into a Jewish state and an Arab state.

The State of Israel would only declare its independence half a year later and fight a war of survival, but Resolution 181 was pivotal in Zionist history as an international stamp of approval for the resurrection of the Jewish homeland. Its rejection by the Arabs effectively blocked the creation of a Palestinian state and set in motion decades of violence.

Yet Israeli President Shimon Peres said recent peace efforts with the Palestinians could spell a belated acceptance by the Arab world of Israel.

“Today there is a majority in favor of partition and we have dropped the demand for an undivided Greater Israel,” Peres told Army Radio, referring to rightist calls to settle the Gaza Strip and West Bank rather than cede them to the Palestinians. “The great majority understands today that we have no choice but to balance the demographic picture by means of geographical partition.”

In my humble opinion a better option would be to have a bi-national state (which in fact was called for in an earlier UN Resolution if memory serves me correctly). That way Palestinians could get their lands returned and live as co-equal citizens. Heresy, I know, but after reading THE LEMON TREE (reviewed on this blog), I have come to believe it's the fair way to handle the competing claims to that region of the world.