On this exact date 60 years ago Israel's - alas, still ongoing - War of Independence began. There had been plenty of bloodshed previously, aimed at eradicating the Jewish presence in this land and quashing the embryonic Jewish homeland. But on November 30, 1947, the decisive struggle erupted.
Initially it couldn't be differentiated from what preceded it - unprovoked Arab attacks on Jews wherever they could be ambushed, which was mostly on the roads (an Arab penchant well into the 21st century).
And so it was on the day which regrettably slipped from our collective memory. Jews perhaps don't recall it because there was so much slaughter before that fateful morning, and by the 1949 armistice there would be over 6,000 Jewish dead, a full 1 percent of the fledgling state's beleaguered population.
And that wasn't all. The bloodletting continued on-and-off for the ensuing six decades. The most recent and horrific megaterror spate was triggered by what false prophets, led by Shimon Peres, promised us was the dawning of the Osloite peace of 1993. "Peace victims," as then-premier Yitzhak Rabin depicted them in his inimitable Orwellian newspeak, are still being offered on the altar of an accommodation which hinges on the establishment of a Palestinian state - the very state which the Arab world rejected with vehement violence in 1947.
The Arabs' failure to annihilate newborn Israel and their subsequent masquerade as downtrodden innocents made it desirable to omit from the memories of willingly bamboozled world opinion and mercilessly indoctrinated Arab masses what happened 60 years ago on the outskirts of Petah Tikva, in the very center of the Jewish heartland, right at home, hardly in a distant usurping empire.
That was when Arabs, by their own conscious decision, set off what they later bewailed as their nakba - the catastrophe that left many of them dispossessed and Israel sovereign and resilient beyond even its founders' dreams.
NOVEMBER 30, needless to stress, followed November 29, a pivotal day in Jewish annals, a day on which the UN General Assembly adopted Resolution 181. That resolution called for the partition of western Palestine into two economically integrated states - one Jewish and one Arab. Eastern Palestine, comprising nearly 80% of the total, was arbitrarily ripped off by the British Mandate in 1922 and handed over to a princeling from what has since become known as Saudi Arabia. Emir Abdullah's gift-package was artificially dubbed Transjordan - a country entirely unheard of in human history and whose bogus nationality is today known as Jordanian.
Though on paper Jews received 54% of the remainder, in fact they got three non-contiguous slivers, the largest of which included the Arava, eastern Negev and the Negev's far south (down to then-nonexistent Eilat). Most of the moonscape terrain wasn't arable, and was certainly unsuitable for large-scale urban habitation. Â
Another bit was wedged in the eastern Galilee around Lake Kinneret. The most densely populated mini-slice was an unimaginably narrow noodle along the Mediterranean, where most Jews congregated and which was chillingly vulnerable. Within it was enclosed the Arab enclave of Jaffa, while Nahariya was left outside the Jewish state.
Jerusalem and Bethlehem were to comprise a corpus separatum or international zone, notwithstanding the fact that Jerusalem boasted an undeniable Jewish majority going back at least to the beginning of the 19th century (there were no censuses before that).
But organized Christianity couldn't abide the affront of Jewish dominion in the Holy City.
UNTENABLE AND implausible though this hodgepodge partition was, Jewish multitudes rejoiced in the streets. At that point it didn't matter how nightmarish and absurd the disjointed territorial splinters assigned to them were. What mattered was that for the first time in 2,000 years, Jewish self-determination - if even on a ridiculously diminutive and fragile geographical fragment - appeared increasingly like a viable reality, despite immediate Arab venomous denunciation of any compromise whatever with any Jewish entity.
Independence itself wouldn't be formally declared until the premature peevish British departure in mid-May 1948 (instead of August). Arab threats of genocide found their preliminary tangible expression as the last exuberant hora circles and outdoor celebrations were winding down in the early hours of November 30. Egged bus No. 2094, carrying 21 passengers, left Netanya at 7:30 a.m. heading for Jerusalem. When it reached the Egyptian migrants' hamlet of Fajja, directly adjoining Petah Tikva (a kilometer from the Syrkin junction), the driver noticed three men waving to him. Assuming they were hitching a ride, he slowed down.
Critically too late, he detected a machine gun protruding from under a coat. He tried to speed up but hand grenades and automatic fire sent his bus off the road and injured most its commuters. The marauders then climbed on board to finish off whoever couldn't escape, including a husband trying desperately to revive his wounded wife.
A British officer who chanced by later found five bodies inside the bullet-riddled vehicle. They were subsequently identified as Shalom Ya'ari of Netanya, Hanna Weiss of Jerusalem, Hirsh Stark of Jerusalem (70 years old when murdered), Haya Yisraeli (24) of Netanya and Shoshana Mizrahi (22) of Netanya, traveling to her wedding in Jerusalem. They were the War of Independence's first official casualties.
The number soon rose to seven when a mere 25 minutes afterward a second bus - going from Hadera to Jerusalem - was attacked in the identical manner nearby, probably by the same infamous Abu-Kishk gang.
On February 17, 1948 the IZL launched an offensive against Fajja, and in April the Hagana finished the job. Nowadays Fajja is woefully lamented on every Nakba Web site, cited as the hapless Palestinian prey of Jewish interlopers.
So much for Arab veracity.
That's why it's preferable, from the point of view of Arab propagandists, to forget the 30th of November, because - indistinguishable as its events may have been from the indiscriminate homicidal Arab terror that preceded it and from that which followed - November 30, 1947, debunks each and every counterfeit Arab myth brazenly spawned and so successfully marketed to the brainwashed Mideast and the ever-gullible international community.
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