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17 November 2006
The map of Palestine you have posted may be correct in the sense that it displays part of the area of Palestine over a limited period or window of time.
It is, however, misleading in this aspect, and this suggests a sinister agenda on the part of the party submitting the map. Frankly stated, the posted map is propaganda; allow me to explain:
The area known as Palestine was historically much larger than that displayed. I suggest that you post the entire map of "British Mandate Palestine" circa 1920, when, of course, the British took the area over under the League of Nations mandate following the defeat of the Ottoman Empire. A map of Palestine as it existed in 1920 may be found at
As even a cursory examination of that map shows, the area now known as (the Country of) Jordan comprised something like half of Palestine. The question then arises - whence Jordan? Indeed!
If one examines the instrument of the mandate (available at http://www.yale.edu/lawweb/avalon/mideast/palmanda.htm ), in particular articles 5 and 25, one will see that the "transfer" of the area of Palestine now known as Jordan to what seems to have been a contrivance, a satrapy, seems to have been a violation of the mandate, and may be considered to have been illegal. This is, I understand, indeed the view of many legal scholars.
Mandate Palestine was to have been divided into two countries - one Arab state, and one Jewish state. By the (arguably illegal) creation of "Jordan" the British manifestly focused Jewish and Arab populations into an area, which obviously could not support two nations - and thus created conflict. Very briefly this describes the historic facts. But here we are, and people are getting killed. What to do? Justice is the key.
It is accepted in law, generally, that monetary compensation for tort losses is appropriate. The League of Nations failed to police the British performance of mandate duties (which the British abused). The League responsibilities were moved to the UN when the UN Charter was accepted. The failure of the British fell to the failure of the League, and falls today to the UN. I would propose that appropriate international law calls for the forced transfer of the Arab and Jewish populations in the area of (1920) mandate Palestine such that two viable Countries, two viable Nations, can be recognized. This would require considerable upset and expense, and, obviously, the de-recognition of "Jordan" (and perhaps Israel) as we presently understand it (them) to exist. Naturally such an occurrence, such a process, would require monetary compensation to numerous affected individuals. Equally obvious, despite the fact that forced transfer of populations has been seen as a remedy in other situations, is the fact that this remedy is not going to occur. Why?
Now, as then, (and despite whatever they may claim) the "Great Powers" (seem to) want conflict in Palestine and they in particular do not want to pay for peace (or admit responsibility), which is what is called for, in part. It serves the "Great Game" to pit Jew against Arab now, just as it did when they created the problem. Once this overarching fact is understood it becomes clear that neither Palestinian Arab nor Jewish Israeli is going to (be allowed to) prevail. Absent hard and genuine justice traceable to historic fact the conflict, (and the propaganda), will continue. The failure of duty, or perhaps deliberate malfeasance, that created the present conflict reminds us that the classical "Quis custodet ipsos custodes?" reamins an essential question for humanity.