When Did American Jewish support for Israel Solidify?

M. Junaid Alam redjaguar at attbi.com
Mon Mar 10 07:30:15 MST 2003

"As to the 1967 war, all I really remember about attitudes to that is
that I
was vastly surprised that the Israelis managed to get their tanks down
Sharm-el-Sheik so quickly"

The orthodox view of '67 is that a three-pronged Arab attack was smashed
by Israel. Israel definitely smashed the Arab armies, but it may have
been pre-emptive; the account Yoshie posted from the guy who is writing
an account of the Liberty attack, along the lines of Israel was facing
destruction, no longer seems plausible:

The 1967 War and the
Israeli Occupation of the
West Bank and Gaza

Did the Egyptians actually start the 1967 war, as Israel originally

"The former Commander of the Air Force, General Ezer Weitzman, regarded
as a hawk, stated that there was 'no threat of destruction' but that the
attack on Egypt, Jordan and Syria was nevertheless justified so that
Israel could 'exist according the scale, spirit, and quality she now
embodies.'...Menahem Begin had the following remarks to make: 'In June
1967, we again had a choice. The Egyptian Army concentrations in the
Sinai approaches do not prove that Nasser was really about to attack us.
We must be honest with ourselves. We decided to attack him.' "Noam
Chomsky, "The Fateful Triangle."

Was the 1967 war defenisve? - continued

"I do not think Nasser wanted war. The two divisions he sent to The
Sinai would not have been sufficient to launch an offensive war. He knew
it and we knew it." Yitzhak Rabin, Israel's Chief of Staff in 1967, in
Le Monde, 2/28/68

Moshe Dayan posthumously speaks out on the Golan Heights

"Moshe Dayan, the celebrated commander who, as Defense Minister in 1967,
gave the order to conquer the Golan...[said] many of the firefights with
the Syrians were deliberately provoked by Israel, and the kibbutz
residents who pressed the Government to take the Golan Heights did so
less for security than for the farmland...[Dayan stated] 'They didn't
even try to hide their greed for the land...We would send a tractor to
plow some area where it wasn't possible to do anything, in the
demilitarized area, and knew in advance that the Syrians would start to
shoot. If they didn't shoot, we would tell the tractor to advance
further, until in the end the Syrians would get annoyed and shoot.

And then we would use artillery and later the air force also, and that's
how it was...The Syrians, on the fourth day of the war, were not a
threat to us.'" The New York Times, May 11, 1997

Expansionism - continued

In Israeli Prime Minister Moshe Sharatt's personal diaries, there is an
excerpt from May of 1955 in which he quotes Moshe Dayan as follows:
"[Israel] must see the sword as the main, if not the only, instrument
with which to keep its morale high and to retain its moral tension.
Toward this end it may, no - it must - invent dangers, and to do this it
must adopt the method of provocation-and-revenge...And above all - let
us hope for a new war with the Arab countries, so that we may finally
get rid of our troubles and acquire our space." Quoted in Livia Rokach,
"Israel's Sacred Terrorism."

But wasn't the occupation of Arab lands necessary to protect Israel's

"Senator [J.William Fulbright] proposed in 1970 that America should
guarantee Israel's security in a formal treaty, protecting her with
armed forces if necessary. In return, Israel would retire to the borders
of 1967. The UN Security Council would guarantee this arrangement, and
thereby bring the Soviet Union - then a supplier of arms and political
aid to the Arabs - into compliance. As Israeli troops were withdrawn
from the Golan Heights, the Gaza Strip and the West Bank they would be
replaced by a UN peacekeeping force. Israel would agree to accept a
certain number of Palestinians and the rest would be settled in a
Palestinian state outside Israel.

"The plan drew favorable editorial support in the United States. The
proposal, however, was flatly rejected by Israel. 'The whole affair
disgusted Fulbright,' writes [his biographer Randall] Woods. 'The
Israelis were not even willing to act in their own self-interest.'"
Allan Brownfield in "Issues of the American Council for Judaism." Fall
1997.[Ed.-This was one of many such proposals]

What happened after the 1967 war ended?

"In violation of international law, Israel has confiscated over 52
percent of the land in the West Bank and 30 percent of the Gaza Strip
for military use or for settlement by Jewish civilians...From 1967 to
1982, Israel's military government demolished 1,338 Palestinian homes on
the West Bank. Over this period, more than 300,000 Palestinians were
detained without trial for various periods by Israeli security forces."
Intifada: The Palestinian Uprising Against Israeli Occupation," ed.
Lockman and Beinin.

Jerusalem - Eternal, Indivisible Capital of Israel?

"Writing in The Jerusalem Report (Feb. 28, 2000), Leslie Susser points
out that the current boundaries were drawn after the Six-Day War.
Responsibility for drawing those lines fell to Central Command Chief
Rehavan Ze'evi. The line he drew 'took in not only the five square
kilometers of Arab East Jerusalem - but also 65 square kilometers of
surrounding open country and villages, most of which never had any
municipal link to Jerusalem. Overnight they became part of Israel's
eternal and indivisible capital.'" Allan Brownfield in The Washington
Report On Middle East Affairs, May 2000.

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