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Encyclopedia of the Palestine Problem

CHAPTER THIRTY SIX Part 2 of 3

Livia Rokach continues:

The next day the Shishakly regime actually fell. The following day, February 27, Sharett was present at a meeting where Lavon and Dayan reported to Ben Gurion that what had happened in Syria was "a typical Iraqi action." The two proposed again that the Israeli army be put on the march. Ben Gurion, "electrified," agreed. Sharett reiterated his opposition, pointing to the certainty of a Security Council condemnation, the possibility of the use against Israel of the Tripartite Declaration of 1950, hence the probability of a "shameful failure." The three objected that "our entrance {into Syria) is justified in view of the situation in Syria. This is an act of defense of our border area.'' Sharett closed the discussion by insisting on the need for further discussion in the cabinet meeting, scheduled for the next morning.

Until that time the Syrian-Israeli border presented no particular problems to the Israelis. When tensions developed, it was almost invariably due to Israeli provocations, such as the irrigation work on lands belonging to Arab farmers, which was condemned by the U.N.; orthe use of military patrol boats against Syrian fishermen fishing in the Lake of Tiberias. No Syrian regime could afford to refrain from offering some minimum protection to its border citizens against Israeli attacks or the taking away of their livelihood, but neither did the rulers of Damascus feel stable enough to be dragged into a major conflict with their southern neighbor. Clashes were therefore minor, and essentially seasonal. No security arguments could be credibly invoked to justify an expansionist program, or any other aggression, against Syria. (28)

ISRAEL HIJACKS A SYRIAN CIVILIAN PLANE

Livia Rokach reports as follows:

On December 12,1954, a Syrian civilian plane was hijacked by Israeli war planes shortly after its take-off, and forced to land at Lydda airport. Passengers and crew were detained and interrogated for two days, until stomy international protests farced the Israelis to release them. Furious, Sharett wrote to Lavon on December 22:

"It must be clear to you that we had no justification whatsoever to seize the plane, and that once forced down we should have immediately released it and not held the passengers under interrogation for 48 hours. I have no reason to doubt the truth of the factual affimation of the U.S. State Department that our action was without precedent in the history of international practice.

"What shocks and worries me is the narrow-mindedness and the short-sightedness of our military leaders. They seem to presume that the State of Israel may or even must behave in the realm of international relations according to the laws of the jungIe." (12/22/54 p. 607)

Sharett also protest to Lavon against the scandalous press campaign, which he suspected was inspired by the security establishment and which was aimed at convincing public opinion

"...that the Syrian plane was stopped and forced down because it violated Israeli sovereignty and perhaps endangered its security. As a result, the public does not understand why such a plane was released and naturally it concludes that we have here an unjustified concession on the part of the government."(12/22/54; p.607)

On December 11, the day before Israel set this world precedent for air-piracy, five Israeli soldiers were captured inside Syrian territory while mounting wiretapping installations on the Syrian telephone network. A month later, on January 13, one of them committed suicide in prison. The official Israeli version is, once again, that the five had been abducted in Israeli territory, taken to Syria, and tortured. The result was a violent emotional upsurge in Israel, all the more so as this news arrived shortly after the condemnation in Cairo of members of an Israeli terrorist ring which had been described to public opinion as an anti-Jewish frame-up. (29)

INTRIGUE IN SYRIA

Livia Rokach states:

Israeli plots against Syria in the 'fifties were not limited only to expansionist and terrorist projects. On July 31, 1955, a senior Foreign Ministry aide, Gidean Raphael, reported to Sharett on a couple of "interesting meetings" he had held with Arab exiles in Europe. One of these was with ex-Syrian Premier Hosni Barmi:

"Hosni wants to get back in power, and is ready to accept help from anyone: from Turkey, in exchange for Syria's future entrance into the Ankara-Baghdad pact; from the US., in exchange for Syria's future alliance with the West; with Israel, in exchange for a peace agreement." (7/31/55; p. 1099)

Peace, however, was the last thing Israel was interested in. Israel's support would require another price:

"Meanwhile he says to us to give money for newspapers, money to buy off personalities, money to buy off political parties. Gideon (suggested to him that) ... he himself is a big Iand owner, and why won't he get together a group of Iand owners, initiate a big plan of settling refugws .... Hosni listened, said it was a wonderful idea.,,but only after he regains power, and until he regains power he needs a payment in advance."(7/31/55; p. 1100)30

A year later, a week before his final fall from government, Sharett got a'tast report on Israel's subve~ive activities in Syria from his advisor on Arab affairs, "Josh" Palmon: "Our contaets with (Adib) Shishakly (the exiled Syrian dictator overthrown in 1954) have been strengthened. The guidelines for common action after his return to power (if he returns!) have been established. We have decided on guidelines to contact the U.S. in regard to this issue."(6/12/56; p. 1430)

None of these "historical" opportunities regarding Syria actually materialized at that time, nor, however, did Israel ever abandon its plans to install a puppet regime in Damascus. But in Lebanon as well, the precise operational blueprints elaborated in 1954 waited two decades before being put into action. (31)

PLANS FOR WAR AND SUBVERSION IN LEBANON

Livia Rokach states:


The February 27, 1954 meeting among Ben Gurion, Sharett, Lavon and Dayan has already been mentioned in connection with Israel's invasion plans of Egypt and Syria, In that same meeting a concrete proposal was outlined to disrupt Israel's most peaceful neighbor at that time, Lebanon. In this case, Israel's hegemonic ambitions did not even pretend to wear the phony fig-leaf of security or defense:

"Then he (Ben Gurion) passed on to another issue. This is the time, he said, to push Lebanon, that is, the Maronites in that country, to proclaim a christian State. I said that this was nonsense. The Maronites are divided. The partisans of Christian separatism are weak and will not dare to do anything. A Christian Lebanon would mean their giving up Tyre, Tripoli, the Beka'a. There is no force that could bring Lebanon back to its pre-World War I dimensions, andall the more so because in that case it would lose its economic raison d'etre. Ben Gurion reacted furiously. He began to enumerate the historical justification for a purely Christian Lebanon. If such a development were to take place, the Christian Powers would not dare oppose it. I claimed that there was no factor ready to create such a situation, and that if we were to push and encourage it on our own we would get ourselves into an adventure that will place shame upon us. He came with a wave of insults regarding my lack of daring and my narrow-mindedness, We ought to scnd envoys and spend money. I said there was no money. The answer was that there is no such thing. The money must be found, if not in the Treasury then at the Jewish Agency! For such a project.it is worthwhile throwing away one hundred thousand, half a million, amillion dollars. When this happens a decisive change will take place in the Middle East, anew era will start. I got tired of struggling against a whirlwind."(2/7/54; p. 377) (32)

Mr. Sharett states that the day following the Cabinet meeting Ben Gurion sent him a letter dated February 27, 1954, in which he insisted on his arguments on the subject of Lebanon. We hereby quote extracts from this letter:


The creation of a Christian State is therefore a natural act; it has historical roots and it will find support in wide circles in the Christian world, both Catholic and Protestant. In normal times this would be almost impossible, first and foremost because of the lack of initiative and courage of the Christians. But at times of confusion, or revolution, or civil war, things take on another aspect, and even the weak declares himself to be a hero. Perhaps (there is never any certainty in politics) now is the time to bring about the creation of a Christian State in our neighborhood. Without our initiative and our vigorous aid this will not be done. It seems to me that this is the central duty, or at least one of the central duties, of our foreign policy. This means that time, energy, and means ought to be invested in it and that we must act in all possible ways to bring about a radical change in Lebanon. Sasson ... and our other Arabists must be mobilized. If money is necessary, no amount of dollars should be spared, although the money may be spent invain. We must concentrateall our efforts on this issue ... This is an historical opportunity. Missing it will be unpardonable. There is no challenge against the World Powers in this ... Everything should be done, in my opinion, rapidly and at full steam.

The goal will not be reached, of course, without a restriction of Lebanon's borders. But if we can find men in Lebanon and exiles from it who will be ready to mobilize for the creation of a Maronite state, extended borders and a largc Muslim population will be of no use to them and this will not constitute a disturbing factor.

I don't know if we have people in Lebanon but there are various ways in which the proposed experiment can be carried out carried out. D.B.G. (2/27/54; pp. 2397-2398) (33)


SHARETT RESPONDS

Sharett wrote a letter to Ben Gurion dated March 18,1954 dealing with the points raised by Mr. Ben Gurion. We hereby quote some extracts from this letter:


As far as I know, in Lebanon today there exists no movement aiming at transforming the country into a christian state governed by the Maronite community ....

The Christians do not constitute the majority in Lebanon. Nor are they a unified block, politically speaking or community- wise. The Orthodox Christian minority in Lebanon tends to identify with their brethren in Syria. They will not be ready to go to war for a Christian Lebanon, that is for a Lebanon smaller than it is today, and detached from the Arab League. On the contrary, they would probably not be opposed to a Lebanon united to Syria, as this would contrihutc to strengthening their own community and the Orthodox community throughout the region.,..In fact, there are more Orthodox Christians in Syria than in Lebanon, and the Orthodox in Syria and Lebanon together are more numerous than the Maronites.

.... Such an initiative would seem disastrous to them because it could tear apart the pattern of Christian-Muslim collaboration in the present Lebanon which was created through great efforts and sacrifices for an entire generation: because it would mean throwing the Lebanese Muslims into the Syrian embrace; and finally, because it would fatally bring about the historical disaster of an annexation of Lebanon to Syria and the annihilation of the former's personality through its dilution in a big Muslim state.

... Who will vouch that the bloody war that will inevitably explode as a result of such an attempt will be limited to Lebanon and not drag Syria into the battlefield immediately? ...

When all this has been said, (I should add that) I would not have objected, and on the contrary I would have certainly been favorable to the idea, of actively aiding any manifestation of agitation in the Maronite community tending to strengthen its isolationist tendencies, even if there were no real chances of achieving the goals. I would have considered positive the very existence of such an agitation and the destabilization it could bring about, the trouble it would have caused the Arab League, the diversion of attention from the Arab-Israeli complications that it would have caused, and the very kindling of a fire made up of impulses toward Christian independence. But what can I do when such an agitation is nonexistent? ... (3/18/54; pp. 2398-2400) (34)

CONTACTS WITH THE LEBANESE

Livia Rokach states:

On April 24 a fleeting note in the Diary informs us that "contacts with certain circles in Lebanon" had been discussed that day between the Premier and some of his collaborators in the Foreign Ministry. The next time Lebanon is mentioned in Sharett's diaries is on February 12, 1955: Neguib Sfeir, an adventurer and a visionary whom Sharett had known since 1920. had just paid a visit to the Israeli ambassador in Rome, Eliahu Sasson, who reported that Sfeir spoke apparently on behalf of Lebanon's president Camille Chamoun. Lebanon would be ready to sign a separate peace if we accept the followirng three conditions: (a) guarantee Lebanon's borders ; (b) come to Lebanon's aid if is attacked by Syria; (c) buy Lebanon's agricultural surplus. Sasson .... suggested a meeting between himself and Chamoun during the latter's next visit to Rome. (2/12/55; p. 723) (35)

BEN GURION PERSISTS IN HIS PLAN AGAINST LEBANON

Livia Rokach states:


On May 16, during a joint meeting of senior officials of the Defense and Foreign Affairs ministries, Ben Gurion again raised the demand that Israel do something about Lebanon. The moment was particularly propitious, he maintained, due to renewed tensions between Syria and Iraq, and internal trouble in Syria. Dayan immediately expressed his enthusiastic support:

"According to him (Dayan) the only thing that is necessary is to find an officer, even just a Major. We should either win his heart or buy him with money, to make him agree to declare himself the savior of the Maronite population. Then the Israeli army will enter Lebanon, will occupy the necessary territory, and will create a Christian regime which will ally itself with Israel. The territory from the Litani southward will be totally annexed to Israel and everything will be all right. If we were to accept the advice of the Chief of Staff we would do it tomorrow, without awaiting asignal from Baghdad. but under the circumstances the government of Iraq will do our will and will occupy Syria.

" ... I did not want to bicker with Ben Gurion in front of his officers and limited myself to saying that this might mean war between Israel and Syria. At the same time I agreed to set up a joint commission composed of officials of the Foreign Affairs Ministry and the Army to deal with Lebanese affairs .... (According to Ben Gurion) this commission should report to the Prime Minister." (5/16/54; p.996)

"The Chief of Staff supports a plan to hire a (Lebanese) officer who will agree to serve as a puppet so that the Israeli army may appear as responding to his appeal to liberate Lebanon from its Muslim oppressors. This will of course be a crazy adventure .... We must try to prevent dangerous complications. The commission must be charged with research tasks and prudent actions directed at encouraging Maronite circles who reject Muslim pressures and agree to lean on us." (5/28/54 p. 1024) (36)

ISRAEL SEEKS AN OPPORTUNITY TO CREATE TENSION WITH LEBANON

Livia Rokach states:


The "prudent actions" continued. On September 22, a mysterious incident occurred: a bus was attacked in Galilee, near Safad. Two persons were killed and ten wounded. Even before an investigation could establish where the aggressors came from (and there were, at that moment, three contradictory hypotheses), Dayan demanded a reprisal action against Lebanon. A Lebanese village suspected to te the attackers' base had already been chosen. Its population would be evacuated in the night, its houses blown up. Sharett objected to Israel's opening up a new front along a border which had been totally peaceful since 1948. But this was exactly what Dayan sought: the destabilization of Lebanon and the search for a forerunner to Major Saad Haddad, who declared a Maronite State in 1979. The fulfillment of his disruptive plans would have found an ideal point of departure in this terrorist action.

Sharett, however, vetoed an immediate action. At this point the Israeli plot against Lebanon was suspended for other reasons. On October I, 1955, the U.S. government, through the CIA, gave Israel the "green light" to attack Egypt. The energies of Israel's security establishment became wholly absorbed by the preparations for the war which would take place exactly one year later. In the summer of 1956, in preparation for the Sinai-Suez operation, the close military and political alliance with France was clinched .... Israeli bombings of South Lebanon, specifically intended to destabilize that country, were to start in 1968 - after the 1967 war, after Dayan's nomination as Defense Minister in Levi Eshkol's cabinet, and after Israel's definite transition from the alliance with France to that with the United States. From that moment on, this unholy alliance was to use every possible means to constantly escalate terrorist violence and political subversion in Lebanon, following Israel's blueprints of the fifties. All this was hatched when no Palestinian guerillas were remotely in view. If anything, the difficulties Israel encountered throughout all these years in consummating its long-standing ambition to divide Lebanon and separate it from the rest of the Arab world display proof of the external and alien nature of these plots. (37)

WAR AGAINST JORDAN

Livia Rokach reports an attack on a bus travelling from Eilat to Beersheba. She states:


On March 17, 1954, a bus travelling from Eilat to Beersheba was attacked at Ma'aleh Ha'akrabim crossroads. Ten passengers were killed and four survived. According to Israeli army trackers, all traces of the perpetrators disappeared at a distance of ten kilometres from the Jordanian border, inside Israeli territory, due to the rocky nature of the terrain .... Colonel Hutcheson, the American chairman of the mixed Jordanian-Israeli Armistice Commission, did not take it seriously. Summing up the Commission's enquiry, Colonel Hutcheson in fact officially announced that "from the testimonies of the survivors it is not proved that all the murderers were Arabs."

Moreover, in a confidential report dated March 24, and addressed to General Bennike, Hutcheson explicitly attributed the attack on the bus to terrorists intent on heightening the tensions in the area as well as on creating trouble for the present govemment. Thereupon the Israelis left the Armistice Commission in protest, and launched a worldwide campaign against Arab terrorism and bloodthirsty Arab hatred of Jews, From his retreat in Sdeh Boker Ben Gurion demanded that Israel occupy Jordanian territory and threatened to leave the Mapai party leadership if Sharett's policy were once again to have the upper hand. bvon, too, pressed for action. On April 4, the Premier wrote to Ben Ciurion:

"I heard that after Ma'aleh Ha'akrabim you thought that we should occupy Jordanian territory. In my opinion such a step would have dragged us into a war with a Jordan supported by Britain, while the United States would have condemn& us in front of the whole world and treated us as an aggressor. For Israel this could have meant disaster and perhaps destruction.'*( 4/4/54; p. 453) (38)

Sharett states further that Dayan, in the course of a conversation on April 23, let drop in passing that "he is not convinced that the Ma'aleh Ha'akrabim massacre was the work of an organized military gang." (39) Sharett later on "learned from the journalist Jon Kmche what Dayan had said about Ma'aleh Ha'akrabim that 'U.N. reports are often more accurate than ours.,.."' He wrote: "From another source I heard this week what Dayan said to Israeli journalists - that it was not proved that the Ma'aleh Ha'akrabim gang was Jordanian - it is possible that it was local." (40)

Livia Rokach continues:


The military, though, were reluctant to give in to his veto on a new attack on the West Bank. Taking for a pretext not Ma'aleh Ha'krabim but a subsequent minor incident in the Jerusalem corridor area, on the night of March 28 the army launched a massive attack on the village of Nahalin, near Bethlehem. Dozens of civilians were killed and wounded, the houses demolished, the village- another Palestinian village - completely destroyed.

"I said to Teddy Kollek (then senior aide in the Prime Minister's Office, today mayor of Jerusalem): here we are, back at the point of departure - are we headed for war or do we want to prevent war? According to Teddy the army leadership is imbued with war appetites. They are very nervous in view of the growing military force of the Arabs, and are completely blind to economic problems and to the complexities of international relations."(3/31/54; p.426)

... Small patrols slipped into the West Bank and Gaza with precise directives to engage isolated Egyptain or Jordanian military patrols, or to penetrate into villages for sabotage or murder actions. Invariably, each such action was falsely described later by an official announcement as having occurred on Israeli territory. Once attacked, the military spokesman would explain, the patrol proceeded to pursue the aggressors into enemy territory. Almost daily actions of this kind, carried out by Arik Sharon's special paratroops, caused a great number of casualties. Regularly, the Prime Minister was left to guess how things really went. Between April and June he noted in his Diary that he leamed by chance, for example, of the coldblooded murder of a young Palestinian boy who happened to find himself in the Israeli patrol's way near his village in the West Bank. With regard to another incident he wrote:

"Finally I have discovered the official secret version of the Tel-Tsafi action - two Arabs that we have sent attacked the Mukhtar who supposedly was guilty of theft and killed his wife. In another incident, a unit of ours crossed the border 'by mistake.' In a third incident, three of our soldiers werepatrolling deep inside Jordanian temtory when they ran into the National Guard, which opened fire (who will check?) They returned the fire and killed four."(5/31/54 p.523)

"This situation endangers the life and the enterprise in Sodom .... Is the army allowed to act in that way according to its own considerations and to endanger such a vital enterprise?'(5/31/54 p. 524)

On June 27 an Israeli paratrooper unit crossed the border, by mistake, according to the official communique, 13 kilometers deep into the West Bank, where it attacked and seriously damaged the Jordanian army base of Azun, east of Qalqilia. "Uncivilized" was Sharett's ingenious comment about the army spokesman's announcement.

What Sharett feared most was Western reaction. A number of U.S. expressions of a l m presented during those weeks to the Israeli government were registered in the Premier's Diary." (41)


THE CONSPIRACY TO DIVIDE THE ARAB STATES INTO SMALL UNITS

In 1982 the Hebrew-language magazine Kivunim (Directions), an official organ of the World Zionist Organization published an important article entitled, "A Strategy for Israel in the Nineteen Eighties," by Oded Yinon, an Israeli journalist and former official of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Israel. The Editor of Kivunim is Yoram Beck, Head of Publications, Department of Information, of the World Zionist Organization. Also on the Editorial Committee of Kivunim is Amnon Hadary, a member of the Palmach during the 1948 atrocities.

Israel Shahak, professor of organic chemistry at the Hebrew University in Jerusalem, and chairman of the Israeli League for Human and Civil Rights translated the article into English and wrote a foreword to it. It was published in 1982 as a pamphlet by the Association of Arab-American University graduates. Professor Shahak states:


The following essay represents, in my opinion, the accurate and detailed plan of the present Zionist regime (of Sharon and Eitan) for the Middle East which is based on the division of the whole area into small states, and the dissolution of all the existing Arab states. I will comment on the military aspect of this plan in a concluding note, Here I want to draw the attention of the readers to several important points:

I. The idea that all the Arab states should be broken down, by Israel, into small units, occurs again and again in Israeli strategic thinking. For example, Ze'ev Schiff, the military correspondent of Ha'aretz (and probably the most knowledgeable in Israel, on this topic) writes about the "best" that can happen for Israeli interests in Iraq: "The dissolution of Iraq into a Shi'ite state, a Sunni state and the separation of the Kurdish part" (Ha'aretz, 2/6/1982]. Actually this aspect of the plan is very old.

2. The strong connection with neo-Consewative thought in the USA is very prominent, especially in the author's notes. But, while lip service is paid to the idea of the "defense of the West" from Soviet power, the real aim of the author, and of the present Israeli establishment is clear: To make an imperial Israel into a world power. In other words, the aim of Sharon is to deceive the Americans after he has deceived all the rest.

3. It is obvious that much of the relevant data, both in the notes and in the text, is garbled or omitted, such as the financial help of the US to Israel. Much of it is pure fantasy. The Crimes Against Peace Committed by Israeli Leaders in the 1956 War, the 1967 War and the Wars Against Lebanon in 1978 and 1982 But, the plan is not to be regarded as not influential, or as not capable of realization for a short time. The plan follows faithfully the geopolitical ideas current in Germany of 1890-1933, which were swallowed whole by Hitler and the Nazi movement, and determined their aims for East Europe. Those aims, especially the division of the existing states, were carried out in 1939-1 941, and only an alliance on the global scale prevented their consolidation for a period of time.

In his essay, Oded Yinon states that all the Arab states are fragmented as follows:


The Arab Muslim world, therefore, is not the major strategic problem which we shall face in the Eighties, despite the fact that it carries the main threat against Israel, due to its growingmilitary might. This world, withits ethnic minorities, its factions and internal crises, which is astonishingly selfdestructive, as we can see in Lebanon, in non-Arab Iran and now also in Syria, is unable to deal successfully with its fundamental problems and does not therefore constitute a real threat against the State of Israel in the long run, but only in the short run where its immediate military power has great import. In the long run. this world will be unable to exist within its present framework in the areas around us without having to go through genuine revolutionary changes. The Moslem Arab World is built like a temporary house of cards put together by foreigners (France and Britain in the Nineteen Twenties), without the wishes and desires of the inhabitants having been taken intoaccount. It was arbitrarily divided into 19 states, all made of combinations of minorities and ethnic groups which are hostile to one another, so that every Arab Moslem state nowadays faces ethnic social destruction from within, and in some a civil war is already raging. Most of the Arabs, 118 million out of 170 million, live in Africa, mostly in Egypt (45 million today).

Maghreb States: Apart from Egypt, all the Maghrcb states are made up of a mixture of Arabs and non-Arab Berbers. In Algeria there is already a civil war raging in the Kabile mountains between the two nations in the country. Morocco and Algeria are at war with each other over Spanish Sahara, in addition to the internal struggle in each of them. Militant Islam endangers the integrity of Tunisia and Qaddafi organizes wars which are destructive from the Arab point of view, from a country which is sparsely populated and which cannot become a powerful nation. That is why he has been attempting unifications in the past with states that are more genuine, like Egypt and Syria.

Sudan: Sudan, the most tom apart state in the Arab Moslem world today is built upon four groups hostile to each other, an Arab Muslim Sunni minority which rules over majority of non-Arab Africans, Pagans and Christians.

Egypt: In Egypt there is a Sunni Muslim majority facing a large minority of Christians which is dominant in upper Egypt: some 7 million of them, so that even Sadat, in his speech on May 8, expressed the fear that they will want a state of their own, something like a "second" Christian Lebanon in Egypt.

Syria: All the Arab States east of Israel are torn apart, broken up and riddled with inner conflict even more than those of the Maghreb. Syria is fundamentally no different from Lebanon except in the strong military regime which rules it. But the real civil war taking place nowadays between the Sunni majority and the Shi'ite Alawi ruling minority (a mere 12% of the population) testifies to the severity of the domestic trouble.

Iraq: Iraq is, once again, no different in essence from its neighbors, although its majority is Shi'ite and the ruling minority Sunni. Sixty-five percent of the population has no say inpolitics, in which an elite of 20 percent holds the power. In addition there is a large Kurdish minority in the north, and if it weren't for the strength of the ruling regime, the army and the oil revenues, Iraq's future state would be no different than that of Lebanon in the past or of Syria today. The seeds of inner conflict and civil war are apparent today already, especially after the rise of Khomcini to power in Iran. a leader whom the Shi'ites in Iraq view as their natural leader.

Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Oman and North Yemen: All the Gulf principalities and Saudi Arabia are built upon a delicate house of sand in which there is only oil. In Kuwait, the Kuwaitis constitute only a quarter of the population. In Bahrain, the Shi'ites are the majority but are deprived of power. In the United Arab Emirates, Shi'ites are once again the majority but the Sunnis are in power. The same is true of Oman and North Yemen. Even in the Marxist South Yemen there is a sizable Shi'ite minority. In Saudi Arabia half the population is foreign, Egyptian and Yemenite, but a Saudi minority holds power.

Jordan: Jordan is in reality Palestinian, ruled by a Trans- Jordanian Bedouin minority, but most of the army and certainly the bureaucracy is now Palestinian. As a matter of fact Amman is as Palestinian as Nablus.

All of these countries have powerful armies, relatively speaking. But there is a problem there too. The Syrian army today is mostly Sunni with an Alawi officer corps, the Iraqi army Shi'ite with Sunni commanders. This has great significance in the long run, and that is why it will not be possible to retain the loyalty of the army for a long time except where it comes to the only common denominator: the hostility towards Israel, and today even that is insufficient.

OPPORTUNITIES FOR ISRAEL TO IMPLEMENT ITS PLAN

Yinon states:


A sad and very stormy situation surrounds Israel and creates challenges for it, problems, risks but also far-reaching opportunities for the first time since 1967. Chances are that opportunities missed at that time will become achievable in the Eighties to an extent and along dimensions which we cannot even imagine today.

The "peace" policy and the return of territories, through a dependence upon the US, precludes the realization of the new option created for us. Since 1967, all the governments of Israel have tied our national aims down to narrow political needs, on the one hand, and on the other to destructive opinions at home which neutralized our capacities both at home and abroad. Failing to take steps towards the Arab population in the new territories, acquired in the course of a war forced upon us, is the major strategic error committed by Israel on the morning after the Six Day War. We could have saved ourselves all the bitter and dangerous conflict since then if we had given Jordan to the Palestinians who live west of the Jordan river. By doing that we would have neutralized the Palestinian problem which we nowadays face, and to which we have found solutions that are really no solutions at all, such as territorial compromise or autonomy which amount, in fact, to the same thing. Today, we suddenly face immense opportunities for transforming the situation thoroughly and this we must do in the coming decade, otherwise we shall not survive as a state.


PLAN TO RECONQUER SINAI PENINSULA OF EGYPT

Yinon states:


Regaining the Sinai peninsula with its present and potential resources is therefore a political priority which is obstructed by the Camp David and the peace agreements. The fault for that lies ofcourse with the present Israeli government and the governments which paved the road to the policy of territorial compromise, the Alignment governments since 1967. The Egyptians will not need to keep the peace treaty after the return of the Sinai, and they will do all they can to return to the fold of the Arab world and to the USSR in order to gain support and military assistance. American aid is guaranteed only for a short while, for the terms of the peace and the weakening of the US both at home and abroad will bring about a reduction in aid. Without oil and the income from it, with the present enormous expenditure, we will not be able to get through 1982 under the present conditions and we will have to act in order to return the situation to the status quo which existed in Sinai prior to Sadat's visit and the mistaken peace agreement signed with him in March 1979.

Israel will not unilaterally break the treaty, neither today, nor in 1982, unless it is very hard pressed economically and politically and Egypt provides Israel with the excuse to take the Sinai back into our hands for the fourth time in our short history. What is left, therefore, is the indirect option. The economic situation in Egypt, the nature of the regime and its pan-Arab policy, will bring about a situation after April 1982 in which Israel will be forced to act directly or indirectly in order to regain control over Sinai as a strategic, economic and energy reserve for the long run. Egypt does not constitute a military strategic problem due to its internal conflicts and it could be driven back to the post 1967 war situation in no more than one day.

Israel's plans to fragment the Arab States are outlined by Yinon:


Egypt:
Egypt, in its present domestic political picture, is already a corpse, all the more so if we take into account the growing Muslim-Christian rift. Breaking Egypt down territorially into distinct geographical regions is the political aim of Israel in the Nineteen Eighties on its Western front.

Egypt is divided and torn apart into many foci of authority. If Egypt falls apart, countries like Libya, Sudan or even the more distant states will not continue to exist in their present form and will join the downfall and dissolution of Egypt. The vision of a Christian Coptic State in upper Egypt alongside a number of weak states with very localized power and without a centralized government as to date, is the key to a historical development which was only set back by the peace agreement but which seems inevitable in the long run.

Lebanon: Lebanon's total dissolution into five provinces serves as a precedent for the entire Arab world including Egypt, Syria, Iraq and the Arabian peninsula and is already following that track. The dissolution of Syria and Iraq later on into ethnically or religiously unique areas such as in Lebanon, is Israel's primary target on the Eastern front in the long run, while the dissolution of the military power of those states serves as the primary short term target.

Syria: Syria will fall apart, in accordance with its ethnic religious structure, into several states such as in present day Lebanon so that there will be a Shi'ite Alawi state along its coast, a Sunni state in the Aleppo area, another Sunni state in Damascus hostile to its northern neighbor, and the Druzes who will set up a state, maybe even in our Golan, and certainly in the Hauran and in northern Jordan. This state of affairs will be the guarantee for peace and security in the area in the long run, and that aim is already within our reach today.

Iraq: Iraq, rich in oil on the one hand and internally torn on the other, is guaranteed as a candidate for Israel's targets. Its dissolution is even more important for us than that of Syria. Iraq is stronger than Syria. In the short run it is Iraqi power which constitutes the greatest threat to Israel. An Iraqi-Iranian war will tear Iraq apart and cause its downfall at home even before it is able to organize a struggle on a wide front against us. Every kind of inter-Arab confrontation will assist us in the short run and will shorten the way to the more important aim of breaking up Iraq into denominations as in Syria and in Lebanon. In Iraq, a division into provinces along ethnic/ religious lines as in Syria during Ottoman times is possible. So, three (or more) states will exist around the three major cities: Basra, Baghdad and Mosul, and Shi'ite areas in the south will separate from the Sunni and Kurdish north. It is possible that the present Iranian-Iraqi confrontation will deepen this polarization.

Saudi Arabia: The entire Arabian peninsula is a natural candidate for dissolution due to internal and external pressures, and the matter is inevitable especially in Saudi Arabia. Regardless of whether its economic might based on oil remains intact or whether it is diminished in the long run, the internal rifts and breakdowns are a clear and natural development in light of the present political structure.

Jordan: Jordan constitutes an immediate strategic target in the short run but not in the long run, for it does not constitute a real threat in the long run after its dissolution, the termination of the lengthy rule of King Hussein and the transfer of power to the Palestinians in the short run.

There is no chance that Jordan will continue to exist in its present structure for a long time, and Israel's policy, both in war and in peace, ought to be directed at the liquidation of Jordan under the present regime and the transfer of power to the Palestinian majority. Changing the regime east of the river will also cause the termination of the problem of the territories densely populated with Arabs west of the Jordan. Whether in war or under conditions of peace, emigration from the territories and economic demographic freeze in them, are the guarantees for the coming change on both banks of the river, and we ought to be active in order to accelerate this process in the nearest future. The autonomy plan ought also to be rejected, as well as any compromise or division of the territories for, given the plans of the PLO and those of the Israeli Arabs themselves, the Shefa'amr plan of September 1980, it is not possible to go on living in this country in the present situation without separating the two nations, the Arabs to Jordan and the Jews to the areas west of the river. Genuine co-existence and peace will reign over the land only when the Arabs understand that without Jewish rule between the Jordan and the sea they will have neither existence nor security. A nation of their own and security will be theirs only in Jordan.

Within Israel the distinction between the areas of '67 and the territories beyond them, those of '48, has always been meaningless for Arabs and nowadays no longer has any significance for us. The problem should be seen in its entirety without any divisions as of '67. It should be clear, under any future political situation or military constellation, that the solution of the problem of the indigenous Arabs will come only when they recognize the existence of Israel in secure borders up to the Jordan river and beyond it, as our existential need in this difficult epoch, the nuclear epoch which we shall soon enter. It is no longer possible to live with three-fourths of the Jewish population on the dense shoreline which is so dangerous in a nuclear epoch.

Dispersal of the population is therefore a domestic strategic aim of the highest order; otherwise, we shall cease to exist within any borders. Judea, Samaria and the Galilee are our sole guarantee for national existence, and if we do not become the majority in the mountain areas, we shall not rule in the country and we shall be like the Crusaders, who lost this country which was not theirs anyhow, and in which they were foreigners to begin with. Rebalancing the country demographically, strategically and economically is the highest and most central aim today. Taking hold of the mountain watershed from Beersheba to the Upper Galilee is the national aim generated by the major strategic consideration which is settling the mountainous part of the country that is empty of Jews today.


IMPLEMENTING THE CONSPIRACY TO WAGE WAR AGAINST THE ARAB STATES

The crimes against peace committed by the Israelis were carefully implemented in accordance with the plans and preparations made over many years. The first such war of aggression was initiated and waged by Israel against Egypt in 1956, in collusion with Great Britain and France. The second was initiated and waged in 1967 against Egypt, Jordan and Syria. The third was initiated and waged against Lebanon in 1978, first directly and later using quisling proxies, and the fourth was the second invasion and occupation of Lebanon in 1982.

THE 1956 WAR AGAINST EGYPT

In October, 1956 then Prime Minister David Ben-Gurion entered into a secret pact with Great Britain and France aimed at furthering Zionist expansionist aims while restoring British and French colonial rule over the Suez Canal. For both internal political reasons and because of their international alliances, the British and the French could not start an aggressive war against Egypt to achieve their colonial objectives without alleged justification. Therefore, they entered into a secret agreement with the Zionists that Israel would invade Sinai and thereupon the British and French would occupy the Suez Canal, supposedly to protect it. Shimon Peres played an important role in this conspiracy.

The Israelis launched a massive armoured invasion of Egypt on October 29, 1956, and rapidly advanced toward the Suez Canal. In accordance with their secret agreement with the Zionists, the following day Great Britain and France issued their ultimatum that both sides should withdraw to twenty miles from the canal. The Israelis, who had by this time taken the Gaza Strip, all of the Sinai peninsula and Sharm el-Sheikh at the entrance to the Gulf of Aqaba, readily complied with the ultimatum in accordance with the prior secret agreement. Egypt, naturally, could not agree to withdrawing from her own sovereign territory and allowing foreign rule over her canal and foreign occupation of her territory in the Sinai. Therefore, the already pre-positioned Anglo-French invasion force landed at Port Said and advanced some miles along the Suez Canal.

The United Nations forthrightly condemned the Israeli- British-French invasion of Egypt, and President Eisenhower threatened financial sanctions by the United States against the aggressors. The conspirators, who had counted on the preoccupation of the superpowers with the situation in Hungary, were shocked at the strong stance of the United States against their war of aggression. The British Prime Minister, Sir Anthony Eden, called a halt to the advance of British troops, and was soon followed in a similar move by French Premier Guy Mollet. Both countries withdrew their troops before the end of 1956.

As a consequence of the failure of their war of aggression and the conspiracy they had entered into with the Zionists in violation of the democratic principles of their countries, both the British and the French Governments fell. The Israelis, having but a facade of a democratic regime, did not suffer such internal consequences. Nonetheless, international pressure forced Israel to withdraw from Egypt in January, 1957, and from the Gaza Strip in March, 1957, when a United Nations Emergency Force was established on the Sinai frontier and at Sharm el-Sheikh.

In 1957 President Eisenhower summarized the principles of international law which guided the United States during the Suez crisis. Successive United States Administrations have failed to uphold these principles in a like manner, but these words of President Eisenhower enshrine a precedent and righteous position which should be followed by Presidents of the United States:

The use of military force to solve international disputes could not be reconciled with the principles and purposes of the United Nations .... We are approaching a fateful moment when either we must recognize that the United Nations is unable to restore peace in this area or the United Nations must renew with increased vigor its efforts to bring about Israel's withdrawal.

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Encyclopedia of the Palestine Problem
By Issa Nakhleh

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