The League of Nations was a beautiful dream: when the "war to end all wars" ended, a council of all nations would be established. This council would settle national disputes amicably and also take responsibility in developing the world for the good of all humanity. Much has been written about the shortcomings of this illustrious body, yet for a time it embodied a noble dream and also accomplished some good.

One of those accomplishments was the establishment of the Mandate for Palestine. Almost all former Ottoman possessions were earmarked for the Arab people, but a tiny area was set aside for the Jewish people. The League of Nations established a mandate that would "be responsible for putting into effect the declaration originally made on November 2nd, 1917" by Great Britain and adopted by the Allied Powers "in favor of the establishment in Palestine of a national home for the Jewish people" (this and the following quotations taken from the text of the League of Nations' mandate).

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The League of Nations declared before history and the world: "… recognition has thereby been given to the historical connection of the Jewish people with Palestine and to the grounds for reconstituting their national home in that country."


The mandatory power would "be responsible for placing the country under such political, administrative and economic conditions as will secure the establishment of the Jewish national home."

The world recognized that the Holy Land was the national home of the Jewish nation. The national homeland for the Jewish nation would be established not for colonial designs, not because of guilt over anti-Semitism, nor because of the Holocaust that hadn't yet occurred – but because it was right, it was the legal and moral truth.

Non-Jews lived as individuals in the land, people of various ethnic and religious backgrounds. Their "civil and religious rights" would be safeguarded: civil and religious rights – but not the political right to national self-determination, because there never was such a right; no other people had such a historic and legal claim.

The mandatory power would "be responsible for enacting a nationality law" with "provisions framed so as to facilitate the acquisition of Palestinian citizenship by Jews who take up their permanent residence in Palestine". It was responsible for "promoting the close settlement and intensive cultivation of the land.

In 1947 the United Nations General Assembly in resolution 181 suggested (all UNGA are non-binding suggestions) that "Independent Arab and Jewish… come into existence in Palestine". This constituted a painful compromise for the Jews who would see yet more of their land lost (in addition to the East Bank of the Jordan), yet the Jews accepted. The Arabs rejected the resolution; the local Arabs started a civil war the very next day, and when the mandate ended, the armies of Egypt, Tran-Jordan, Syria, Lebanon and Iraq – with contingents from other Arab countries – invaded the land, intent on annihilating the new-born Jewish state and the entire Jewish community.

The Arabs lost in their attempt at practicing genocide in 1948 and again in repeated attempts later, leaving the entire area between the Mediterranean Sea and the Jordan River in Jewish hands. This result isn't only the moral outcome of self-defense against aggression and repeated threats of genocide – but in legal fact is a continuation and fulfillment of the only legal status of the area. Since rejection of the partition resolution rendered it null and without any lasting legal standing, the legal status quo ante remains, namely: the League of Nations resolutions mentioned above.

Therefore there is no "occupation". Israeli rule in Judea and Samaria as well as the "close settlement and intensive cultivation of the land" are exactly in accord with international law.

So why is the word "occupation" used, if it's legally and morally incorrect? Simple – it's part of the propaganda war against Israel. There are other terms used incorrectly in the propaganda war against Israel, words like: genocide, colonialism, settlements, settler violence, apartheid and apartheid wall. They're all dishonestly and willfully misused – much as all classic anti-Jewish propaganda. They're then often repeated, whether through malicious intent to libel, or from plain ignorance. In the coming posts I'll try to explain why these terms are inapplicable to Israel.

"Goes with innocence, acts justly and speaks truth in his heart" (Psalms 15, 28)

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