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The New International, March–April 1952

Al Findley

Israel on its 4th Anniversary

Problems and Contradictions of the New State


From The New International, Vol. XVIII No. 2, March–April 1952, pp. 98–107.
Transcribed by Ted Crawford.
Marked up by Einde O’Callaghan for ETOL.


Israel, on its fourth anniversary, presents to the observer a panorama of problems and contradictions! Created by a people about whom polemics still rage as to whether they are or are not a nation, the new state is already caught in the great powers’ web of preparation for the coming war that threatens to strangle its freedom of action and its very independence. It is a country making tremendous economic progress, yet reeling from one economic crisis to another; a small country with relatively large sources of outside income, suffering from a dollar shortage; a state of an oppressed people that treats its own Arab minority little differently than do most oppressor nations. It is a country with a mixed economy that daily undergoes a tug-of-war between its capitalist pulls and its socialist trends and faces the new problem of the growth of an embryonic new class of “bureaucratic collectivist” rulers of industry; and lastly, it is a state that is separate from but definitely connected with the problem that goes under the heading of the “Jewish Question.”

The February, 1952, devaluation of the Israeli pound from $2.80 to $1.00 and $1.40 underscores the constant economic crisis that faces Israel. Even this reduced rate is above the “price” on the Swiss free market and the Israeli black market. New economic crises can be expected despite the “N.E.P.” announced by the government at the end of February. The causes of Israel’s recurring crises are varied: 1) immigration, 2) the poverty of the country, 3) armaments, 4) disruption of normal trade routes, 5) disproportionate capital investments.

The large scale immigration policy of the government is a mixture of Zionist idealism, a need for a haven by Jews insecure in their homelands, and – to a greater degree than realized – is dictated by the desires of the Government to increase the population for military reasons.

In some cases, as in Iraq, the Israeli government, with the aid of extreme nationalists, helped create panic and fear among the Iraqi Jews in order to swell the ranks of the immigrants to satisfy its need for military power and economic potential for war. In others, its exaggerated portrayals of Israel, as a land of milk and honey swelled the ranks of migrants.

Immigration is not, however, the main cause of Israel’s shortages and economic troubles. It must be remembered that while 700,000 Jews entered the country in the last three years, the total population in the area that Israel comprises is not much greater than it was under the British. True, European Jews have a higher standard of living than the Arabs who previously inhabited the area and this accounts for a small part of Israel’s difficulties. It must also be remembered that the cost of immigration and settling is covered by foreign contributions, UJA, government loans from the United States and other countries, and to a small degree, private capital. Then, too, while the main sources of mass immigration have been exhausted and immigration has for the past half year been less than half of what it used to be, Israel continues to experience growing shortages, economic crises, devaluation, etc. The reasons for Israel’s economic troubles lie elsewhere.

A fundamental cause is the poverty of the country. Israel is small and poor in terms of natural resources, food and agricultural production; Before partition, Palestine as a whole, was a “deficit” food area and had to import its food. Today, in Israel, imports are nine times greater than exports.

A poor country can be made “rich” through industrialization and capital investment. With this in mind, the Israeli government has embarked on an extremely ambitious program of capital investment designed to make the country virtually self-supporting within a few years.

The extreme and exaggerated tempo of capital investment is out of proportion to the needs of a country that is at peace and has time to spread its investments. What is most important, however, is that this investment program has led the government to announce its policy of further reducing the already low standard of living.

The argument that the investment program and the sacrifice it entails are required to increase the productive capacity is specious. The “experts” who have inspired this program can only see machinery as the source of greater production. What they do not see is what Trotsky and other socialists ably demonstrated a long time ago: that an investment in the health and well being of labor will result in a magnified productivity of the worker per unit cost. Reduce the standard of living of the worker and you retard the growth of production despite increases in machinery and other capital investments.

While the economic factors mentioned above play a role in creating economic difficulties for Israel the two most important and immediate reasons for the suffering in Israel are the disproportionately large armaments budget and the cutting of “normal trade” between “industrial” Israel and the Arab Near East. However, these two problems can be easily and quickly resolved.

Israel is a small nation surrounded by a number of hostile Arab states and feels the need for relatively huge armament expenditures. While the exact amount of the cost of armaments is a secret, the vice-speaker of the assembly gave a clue to its size when he stated that the military budget alone was greater than the normal budget and the “investment” budget for immigration taken together. How much greater, he did not say. The cessation of trade between Israel and the Arab states forces Israel to spend needed “hard” currency for food purchases in the United States and Argentina, instead of buying in “soft” currency Arab countries, and, at the same time, closes to Israel its “natural” market for finished goods. That this also harms the Arab states as much as Israel is obvious. A reduction in the crushing burden of armaments and the restoration of normal trade can be accomplished fairly quickly and be of immediate help to Israel. To achieve this, a policy of peace in the Near East and steering clear of the general East-West conflict is required.

A few years ago, all parties without exception were for accepting support from whichever side offered it and for neutrality in the cold war. The pride of a new state and a small nation’s natural fear of becoming a tail to the kite of the power blocs was strengthened by the fact that millions of Jews lived on both sides of the Iron Curtain. America’s and Russia’s declared support of the new state, led to the hope that Israel would stay out of the cold war by agreement of the principal contestants. But the relations of the big powers to Israel have changed in the past few years.

There has been a distinct rapprochement between Israel and Britain. While Britain still puts greater emphasis on friendship with the Arabs, it has (formally at least) placed Israel on an equal footing. The three-power declaration of the US, Britain and France in the spring of 1950, provided equality for all Near East states in acquisition of arms and guaranteed their existing borders. Britain is Israel’s largest customer and the Foreign Office has moved to settle the outstanding question of Israeli frozen assets that remained after the partition of Palestine.

The US continues its support of Israel, despite some vacillations by the State Department. Of no small importance is the fact that five million Jews live in the US and the greatest portion of Israeli foreign exchange comes from American Jews. Past loans and the hope for future loans play an important – though not overriding – role in the relations between Israel and Washington. The vacillations of the State Department have their positive side in that they helped prevent a policy of identification with the West.

The US policy in the Near East today is to try to line up both Israel and the Arab states, on its side of the struggle for the world. With characteristic arrogance the US tells both that their differences are unimportant and should be submerged in the interests of the US drive to build a front against Russia. While Washington prefers an Eastern Mediterranean alliance headed by Turkey and Israel, it demands peace and important concessions from both Jews and Arabs.

From Israel it wants admission of Arab refugees and a readiness to cede territory to placate the Arabs. While the US gives modest aid to the Arab states it is not prepared completely to underwrite their existing unstable and reactionary social regimes with large-scale loans. The policy of the State Department in relation to the Arab states is somewhat similar to its policy in relation to Chiang Kai-shek in 1947. Substantial aid is promised but only if there is a “revolution from the top” that will ameliorate the condition of the people and give promise of stability.

Since the pashas and effendis will not change, the US government looks to King Farouk in Egypt, army strong men in Syria, etc., to do the job. The action of the Egyptian nationalists in abrogating the Anglo-Egyptian treaty has led the US to openly propose the establishment of SACME – Supreme Allied Command for the Middle East. At present the only governments, besides the English, who have publicly proclaimed their adherence, are Turkey and those two great “Near East” states, Australia and New Zealand.

In the Arab countries, the nationalist anger at the West has led to the growth of both a neutralist and to some small extent a genuine “third camp” position. The attitude of the governments is, however, to place a price on their adherence – the granting of their “national” demands by the Anglo-American imperialist bloc.

The attitude of the Israeli government toward SACME although it is not a matter of clear public record, can be summed up as follows: The preferred situation would be to have no formal set-up, but if there is to be a formal command, that Israel participate and the Arabs do not. But if the Arabs do adhere, then Israel must perforce also adhere, to prevent the Arab states from receiving arms that will upset the military balance between those states. and Israel.

Whether the US will be able to overcome the man political problems before SACME is born remains to be seen.

Russia’s relations with Israel have deteriorated sharply. From a very friendly level, they are now distinctly cool. The initiative, of course, came from Russia. Moscow started a violent anti-Zionist campaign and set up barriers to Jewish emigration from Eastern Europe. The extermination of Jewish culture and the growing policy of governmental anti-Semitism in Russia played a role. The extension of official Stalinist anti-semitism to the satellite countries did not aid the relations of Russia and Israel. With the arrest of Rudolph Slansky, former Secretary-General of the Czech Communist Party, a huge anti-semitic propaganda barrage was unleashed by the Stalinist officials and press. Slansky was accused of being an agent of Washington and Jerusalem. The majority of those purged were denounced as traitors because they were “cosmopolitans,” “landless,” etc., leaving no doubt that those terms mean Jews, employing the exact terminology used by the traditional East European anti-semitic movements.

Israel asked for credits from Russia but received none. If this is explained on the ground that Russia had none to give, it is still true that the absolute refusal of Russia to supply Israel with technical assistance was handled in a hostile manner. When Israel requested Russia to send a few forestry experts Moscow did not have even the courtesy to reply. Unlike its satellite countries Russia refused to buy from Israel – to any extent, with the exception of oranges in 1951 and ‘52; and while Israel makes purchases from Russia, such goods purchased had to be limited to those urgently needed, since the Russians demanded 20 to 30 per cent more than the prices on the world market.

Russia has expanded its double-pronged effort to win the Arabs over to its side. On one side is the diplomatic effort to woo the Arab ruling classes and on the other, the Stalinist parties try to get popular support for Russia. Russian diplomatic agents and activities in the Near East are at a record high. The Communist Parties are now using the anti-Israeli feeling of the Arabs in their agitation to line-up the Arabs with Moscow. The Syrian and Lebanese Stalinists issued a joint proclamation that “true patriots” must unite against the US “seeking to force the Arabs to sign a peace treaty with Israel” and to join an alliance with that country.

With the change of the position of Israel in world politics the positions of the various Israeli political parties on foreign policy have changed also; or rather, latent tendencies have been brought out into the open. Friendship with both East and West is still in the political programs but is now only a phrase.

The Mapai has departed from the policy of “neutralism” as between the two power blocs, to one of “no prior commitment.” The policy of neutralism is interpreted to mean that nothing was to be done that would aid, or redound to the benefit of, either one of the cold-war rivals. “No prior commitment” is supposed to mean that Mapai will act in a given situation on the “merits” of that case, regardless of the advantage one or the other camp may gain; but without any advance commitment to all-out support of either side. Thus, they support the US in Korea and the Stalinists in China. The cumulative record, especially in voting, has become overwhelmingly in favor of the US

Even during their period of neutralism, the Mapai leaders did not hide their own personal feelings for the West. Now the interviews and private statements of Mapai leaders reveal an increasingly pro-West sentiment. David Ben Gurion went so far as to tell a US reporter that in case of war, Israel would be found on the “right” side.

Mapai does observe neutralism in one peculiar way. Its official organs refrain from criticizing the horrible social conditions of Russia and Stalinism, despite the fact that the Stalinists and Stalinoids do not appreciate this attitude. It is part of the political atmosphere in Israel which contributes to the growing Stalinization of Mapai’s rival in the Israeli working class, Mapam.

While Mapai still clings to an emasculated version of neutralism, the General Zionists (conservative bourgeois party) have been the first to drop all pretense and come out openly for a pro-US orientation. Their arguments include all the usual lip service to “democracy vs. totalitarianism,” and emphasize the economic dependency of Israel on a great power in case of war. They point out that Palestine would have starved – literally – if not for the fact that, as a British territory, it received allocations of food and other necessities. In a future war, Russia will not have the food or the shipping to supply Israel.

Within the Mapam, the Stalinized Hashomer Hatzair has also dropped all pretense of neutralism and has come out for “Unity with the Soviet Union.” Like all pro-Stalinists, they attempt to mask their allegiance to the Russian camp by labeling it the “peace camp.” The more moderate elements of Mapam want a position of “neutrality for the state – no neutrality for the party.” Even for them the party must “unite with the Soviet Union.” The position of Hashomer Hatzair won a majority at the recent Mapam convention and is now the official policy of the party.

The parties of the extreme right – the semi-fascist Stern group and Heruth party (former Irgun group) – present an interesting picture on foreign policy. The Stern group is as pro-Stalinist in foreign policy as the Hashomer Hatzair. The only thing that can be said for them is that they had the forthrightness to declare their pro-Russianism long ago.

The Heruth party was composed of different wings, from pure and simple nationalists, to fascists and semi-fascists. The nationalist elements led by Uri Jabotinsky (son of the founder of the Revisionists) and Peter Bergson, are in favor of a US alliance. The fascistic elements of the party, led by Menachim Beigun, say: “Russia is not our enemy. Our enemies are the Arabs, the British and the Germans.” They do not take a pro-Russian position but want to maintain a consistent neutralism.

In addition, however, Israel has another important issue of foreign policy which is unique to it. That is: How to achieve peace with the Arabs?

In discussing Israeli economy, we pointed out that a large part of Israel’s economic difficulties come from the fact that Israel is a beleaguered island in a hostile sea, and explained how this disrupts its normal trade channels and imposes a terrific burden of armaments on its economy. The substitution of a citizen army or militia in place of a standing army would be of some help; but above all, what is needed is peace – not only a formal peace treaty but a peace based on the establishment of friendly relations with the Arab peoples, such as would permit a substantial lightening of the military burden and restore normal trade within the Near East.

In general, both the old government coalition (Mapai, religious bloc, etc.) and its major opposition, the General Zionists, believe that peace with the Arabs can be obtained by holiday speeches about their desire for friendly relations with them while waiting for time to heal the wounds. They also believe that strengthening Israel militarily and economically can force the Arabs to accept Israel as a permanent reality; and through the use of diplomacy, especially the pressure of foreign powers such as the US and Britain, they hope to compel the Arabs to sign a peace treaty. They are willing to sign such a treaty with any of the Arab states, including Abdullah’s Transjordania and accept the existing lines as the future boundaries.

Mapam, on the other hand, is opposed to signing any peace treaties with any of the present Arab regimes. It demands that peace wait till the “progressive forces,” – i.e., the Arab Stalinists – come to power. It is especially violently opposed to any peace with Abdullah. Mapam demands the creation of an independent Arab state in the economically and politically unviable portion of Arab Palestine left after Israel’s victory in the war deprived it of even the small chance of independent existence it may have had at first.

The Mapam program, in essence, subordinates the need for immediate peace with the Arabs to the interests of world Stalinism. This is further underlined by the fact that the Arab Stalinists, who represent Mapam’s hope, have changed their line on orders from Moscow and are no longer advocates of peace with Israel.

As to Mapam’s position on Arab Palestine, it has a dual motivation. The first is, of course, that it hopes the miserable remnants of Arab Palestine to be dependent on Israel. The second: having eliminated Abdullah and recognizing that no other force will voluntarily rule in such a state, they hope the Arab Stalinists will be aided to power, and they purport to believe, with assumed naivete, that such a state will listen to Israel rather than Moscow. Aside from all other considerations, the prohibition of union of Arab Palestine with Transjordan would violate the people’s right to self-determination; the minimum that must be accorded by any self-styled democrat is a free vote for the people to determine their own will on independence versus annexation by Transjordan.

The Mapai government’s program is not likely to achieve peace by itself, and if it did the resulting formal peace treaty would be little better than an armed truce.

At present there is more sentiment for peace among the Arab ruling classes than there is among the Arab masses. The only Arab voices raised for peace are those of elder statesmen. The Arab rulers dare not submit to foreign pressure since this may well topple their regimes. The governments of the Arab countries are notoriously unstable – for example, Syria has had three “revolutions” in that many years. Other regimes are almost as weak. Without any popular support or demand for peace from below, the regimes would be in danger of falling if they submitted to outside pressure and signed a treaty. The intensity of national feeling in all the Moslem countries of the Near East is easily capable of bringing that about.

Real peace will come to the Near East only when there is created a desire for Arab-Jewish unity among the Arab masses, when diplomacy has a foundation in the desire of the people for peace. The creation of such a sentiment among the grass roots of the Arab peoples demands a program and a positive attitude on the part of the Israeli labor movement toward the Arab masses, both those in Israel and in the surrounding countries. For both peoples such a policy is not an exercise in morality or good will alone, but is a crying need if the interests of both peoples are to be realized.

The Arab nationalists should and must give up their desires to eliminate Israel as an independent State. The first reason is obvious: as a people, the Jews have a right to self-determination. But, more concretely, the interests of the mass of the people and fellaheen whose standard of living is so abysmally low, demand that the Arab nationalist who is truly interested in the welfare of the Arab people, concentrate on the many plans for raising the standard of the entire region, e.g., Jordan Valley Authority, that the co-operation of all Near Eastern states will allow.

For any real improvement of the status of the Arab peasants, a change from the semi-feudal social order is an absolute necessity. The Arab nationalist movement would gain a great deal in this task from co-operation with the Israeli labor and Socialist movement. Peace and co-operation in the region will also reduce the strength of outside imperialist domination and help secure the independence of the weak Arab states. While the Arab nationalists correctly point a finger to Israel’s treatment of its Arab minority and the Arab refugees, they would do well to take a look at the treatment of Jewish minorities in the Arab states.

The Jews, in order to help create this sentiment for peace, should re-examine their position on the Arab minority and refugees.

The present record of the Israeli government in relation to the Arabs in Israel is a poor one. The Knesset (parliament) in February, 1952, continued in effect martial law in Arab sections of the country and in reality “froze” the Arab in his status in Israel.

What is the status of Arabs in Israel?

The well-known statistician, Lestchinsky, in an article in the Jewish Forward of June 16, paints a cheerful picture – one that is false and so easily disproved that one wonders how a reputable man like Lestchinsky dares make such ridiculous statements.

According to Lestchinsky, there is no unemployment among Israeli Arabs; there is no discrimination; Arabs have full freedom; Arab farmers are prospering; wages are equal; Israeli Arabs are better off than Arabs in other countries; in fact, the Arabs who are infiltrating Israel are not enemies or spies but envious Arabs who want to enjoy the privileges and benefits of Arab citizenship in Israel.

We agree with some of what Lestchinsky says: the Arabs attempting to enter Israel illegally are not enemies of Israel. This undoubtedly true statement only completes the case against the Israeli government policy toward these unfortunates, a policy which Lestchinsky supports.

These refugees do not seek privileges or benefits; they seek only to return to their lands from which they fled in fear. In return they will act as peacefully as peasants anywhere in the world. In time, by proper action, the Israeli government can win their loyalty.

It also may be true that Arabs in Israel are better off than in other countries; but this is an indictment of the social conditions in the Arab states, and not praise of Israel.

One need go no further than publications of Lestchinsky’s own party, the Poale Zion, to prove his arguments and statements false.

The Jewish Frontier of February, 1950, describes the condition of the Arabs in Israel, a description that is true and has not changed since that date. On November 8, 1948, there were 69,000 Arabs in Israel; today there are 165,000. The increase is due to the acquisition of new territory by Israel, to the Israeli policy of permitting the return of wives and children of Arab residents, and partly to the illegal re-entry of Arab refugees.

”Individual Arabs have improved their status but the Arab community as a whole has not made the desired progress and the relations between the government of Israel and its Arab citizens have not advanced to the optimum degree.”

On the positive side it lists the government’s special attention to the religious and communal needs of the Arabs; the growth of the Brith Poali Eretz Israel (Palestine Labor League), the Arab trade-union organization run by the Histadrut, which has grown a great deal through its control of jobs amid widespread unemployment. The league now claims more influence than the Communist Party in Nazareth and other important Arab sections. “The past year,” the article continues, “has witnessed the beginnings of Arab initiative in the economic field.” It also lists: marketing associations, formed in some villages; the organization of one Arab “kibbutz” (collective); and Druze Arab bus drivers have joined a co-operative.

On the other hand, it reports:

There also continues to exist a severe economic crisis amongst the Arabs. Workers are unemployed, former government officials have little hope of finding employment, farmers find it difficult to market their product, businessmen suffer from lack of customers. The exceptions to this rule are farmers who did not abandon their villages but even some of these have mistakenly been listed as absent and their land registered with the office for abandoned property and now have to pay high levies for property that is in fact their own.

Examples of activities of government departments that are constructive ... are unfortunately few and scattered ...

In some parts of the country all restrictions on free movement have been lifted.

We suspect that the definition of “some” when this is used in connection with freedom of movement is – very little, while the definition of “some” in relation to incorrect registry of land is – considerable.

An article entitled Crescent in the Shield of David in a recent issue of UN World confirms the picture of economic crisis among Israeli Arabs and has this to say about freedom of movement: “Arab citizens still need special permits to travel from one town to another.”

There is no discrimination against Arabs in cafeterias, etc., such as exists against Negroes in the US. However, the Yiddish press reports that even the Arab deputies in the Knesset are almost completely isolated and that no one talks to them.

Alvin Rosenfeld, writing in the March 5, NY Post reports from Israel:

For 12 long months an Israeli citizen – although not charged with, tried for or convicted of any crime – rotted in a local jail. He sat there, day in and day out, for some 365 days, simply because the state authorities figured that, free, he might prove to be a danger to the community.

The man, an Israeli Arab named Naif Salum el Khoury, had been arrested as a suspect in the murder of two settlers at the famous war-battered collective farm of Negba. Despite the fact that the charge was dropped for lack of sufficient evidence, the army decided to hold El Khoury anyway, since he was known to be anti-Jewish. The Arab was locked away on the order of the army chief of staff himself, and habeas corpus was forgotten.

The incident, disclosed when El Khoury at last was able to appeal to the Supreme Court for his freedom (successfully), was but one of a series of small but disturbing happenings wherein Israel has sidestepped or ignored democratic principles ...

Unofficial government spokesmen admit that a few Arabs are being held without charges even now, after the El Khoury case. Normally, and as a matter of routine, in the search for Arab “infiltrators” the army surrounds entire Arab villages in the early hours of the morning and searches every house without warrants. Even the village of Abu Gush, which fought on the Jewish side in the war, was not exempt. The police lined up all the males in the village, and since they did not know “infiltrators” from natives expelled every tenth man to Jordan. This happened only a year ago.

These searches are not the brutal searches of the Gestapo or GPU. The army has invited the Arab deputies to go along. However, these searches are illegal and place the Arabs in a position of second class citizenship. It is undeniably true that the current bad position of the Arabs in Palestine was born of war, and it is also true that the Arabs in Israel have more rights than the Jews in Arab countries, but whatever the Israeli government could claim about “military necessity” during the war, there is not even this shadow of justification now. The present no-war-no-peace situation cannot justify this kind of treatment of the Arab refugees and of Arab citizens of Israel.

The fact that legal redress in the form of Supreme Court decisions is sometimes obtained after long delay is slight consolation and ignores two basic dangers.

The first is that the “emergency” pattern of relations with the Arabs will become permanent. This is especially dangerous since the present no-war-no-peace in the Near East tends to perpetuate these evils. These actions also tend to prevent the achievement of peace since it gives the opponents of peace solid arguments. They prevent the emergence of popular Arab demands for peace, as a real and effective force.

The other danger, and by far the greatest, is the apathy of the public press and even the labor movement to these violations of democratic rights. In most cases the government does not even feel the need to apologize for its actions. And this is a government whose ruling party, the Mapai, claims to be socialist. This indifferent attitude reveals a lack of understanding of the road to peace and to Arab-Jewish unity.

While the treatment of Arabs within Israeli is of crucial importance to peace, the question of the Arab refugees who ran away, or, in some cases, were driven from their homes during the war, is an immediate one. The Arab governments have cleverly made the demand for the return of these refugees to their homes their first and main demand. This demand is not motivated by any real concern for the fate of these unfortunate refugees; the Arab rulers have done nothing in the past to relieve their terrible plight. On the contrary, they have exploited the misery of the Arabs as a source of income and as a good “diplomatic arguing point.” They have lined their pockets with the money sent to aid the refugees and have utilized the situation as a popular argument against peace with Israel, both amongst the Arab masses and abroad.

A solution of the Arab refugee question would be a major step toward Arab-Jewish peace. But, can Israel accept the demands of the Arabs? Can Israel turn out the new immigrants from their houses to return them to their former Arab owners? Can Israel afford the cost of resettlement of masses of Arabs, when it can hardly care for settling the masses of Jewish immigrants who have streamed to its shores? The questions seem reasonable. The reality is quite different.

If real peace were established between Israel and its neighbors, the country would enjoy a prosperity that it has never seen. The Arab countries need the manufactured goods and technical resources of Israel. Israeli industry needs the Arab markets. An Israel at peace and standing on a sound economic basis, would be the recipient of investments, loans and donations that would dwarf all the monies now collected for it, and, for the first time, would give the immigrants the means of settling. The return of the Arab refugees to their homes and fields, the majority of which lie idle, would not hinder immigrant settlement but, on the contrary, may help. The new immigrants need not only homes, but work, trade and prosperity. These needs can be met on the basis of Arab-Jewish understanding.

There is also no basis for assuming that the refugees would turn into a “fifth column.” They are exhausted by their sorrows, and bear a deep resentment against their leaders who favor war against the Jews. If Israel should allow them to return as citizens with equal rights, and in recognition of their right to continue their lives in a country in which they have lived for hundreds of years there is little doubt that in time they would become loyal citizens of Israel.

While the return of the Arab refugees is a question of an act of simple justice that does not have to be compensated for in the present circumstances, it will pay nonetheless large dividends to Israel and will bring real peace and prosperity to the country and the entire Near East. In addition it will be a step toward the unification of the Near East which in turn can serve as an important step in restoring peace to the entire world.

The return of the Arab refugees will be a boon for both those who come back and those who allow them to return.

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