On Ethnic Cleansing and the Solution of the Arab Question
By Leaders of Israeli Zionism
David Ben Gurion, Prime Minister of Israel 1949-1954, 1955-1963:
We must expel Arabs and take their places.David Ben Gurion, 1937, Ben Gurion and the Palestine Arabs, Oxford University Press, 1985.
We must use terror, assassination, intimidation, land confiscation, and the cutting of all social services to rid the Galilee of its Arab population.David Ben-Gurion, May 1948, to the General Staff. From Ben-Gurion, A Biography, by Michael Ben-Zohar, Delacorte, New York 1978.
There has been Anti-Semitism, the Nazis, Hitler, Auschwitz, but was that their fault? They see but one thing: we have come and we have stolen their country. Why would they accept that?Quoted by Nahum Goldmann in Le Paraddoxe Juif (The Jewish Paradox), pp. 121-122.
Jewish villages were built in the place of Arab villages. You do not even know the names of these Arab villages, and I do not blame you because geography books no longer exist. Not only do the books not exist, the Arab villages are not there either. Nahlal arose in the place of Mahlul; Kibbutz Gvat in the place of Jibta; Kibbutz Sarid in the place of Huneifis; and Kefar Yehushua in the place of Tal al-Shuman. There is not a single place built in this country that did not have a former Arab population.David Ben Gurion, quoted in The Jewish Paradox, by Nahum Goldmann, Weidenfeld and Nicolson, 1978, p. 99.
Let us not ignore the truth among ourselves ... politically we are the aggressors and they defend themselves ... The country is theirs, because they inhabit it, whereas we want to come here and settle down, and in their view we want to take away from them their country.David Ben Gurion, quoted on pp 91-2 of Chomskys Fateful Triangle, which appears in Simha Flapans Zionism and the Palestinians pp 141-2 citing a 1938 speech.
If I knew that it was possible to save all the children of Germany by transporting them to England, and only half by transferring them to the Land of Israel, I would choose the latter, for before us lies not only the numbers of these children but the historical reckoning of the people of Israel.David Ben-Gurion (Quoted on pp 855-56 in Shabtai Teveths Ben-Gurion in a slightly different translation).
Golda Meir, Prime Minister of Israel 1969-1974
There is no such thing as a Palestinian people ... It is not as if we came and threw them out and took their country. They didnt exist.Golda Meir, statement to The Sunday Times, 15 June, 1969.
How can we return the occupied territories? There is nobody to return them to.Golda Meir, March 8, 1969.
Any one who speaks in favor of bringing the Arab refugees back must also say how he expects to take the responsibility for it, if he is interested in the state of Israel. It is better that things are stated clearly and plainly: We shall not let this happen.Golda Meir, 1961, in a speech to the Knesset, reported in Ner, October 1961
This country exists as the fulfillment of a promise made by God Himself. It would be ridiculous to ask it to account for its legitimacy.Golda Meir, Le Monde, 15 October 1971
Yitzhak Rabin, Prime Minister of Israel 1974-1977, 19921995 We walked outside, Ben-Gurion accompanying us. Allon repeated his question, What is to be done with the Palestinian population? Ben-Gurion waved his hand in a gesture which said Drive them out!Yitzhak Rabin, leaked censored version of Rabin memoirs, published in the New York Times, 23 October 1979.
[Israel will] create in the course of the next 10 or 20 years conditions which would attract natural and voluntary migration of the refugees from the Gaza Strip and the West Bank to Jordan. To achieve this we have to come to agreement with King Hussein and not with Yasser Arafat.Yitzhak Rabin (a Prince of Peace by Clintons standards), explaining his method of ethnically cleansing the occupied land without stirring a world outcry. (Quoted in David Shipler in the New York Times, 04/04/1983 citing Meir Cohens remarks to the Knessets foreign affairs and defense committee on March 16.)
Menachem Begin, Prime Minister of Israel 1977-1983
[The Palestinians] are beasts walking on two legs.Israeli Prime Minister Menachem Begin, speech to the Knesset, quoted in Amnon Kapeliouk, Begin and the Beasts, New Statesman, June 25, 1982.
The Partition of Palestine is illegal. It will never be recognized.... Jerusalem was and will forever be our capital. Eretz Israel will be restored to the people of Israel. All of it. And forever.Menachem Begin, the day after the U.N. vote to partition Palestine.
Yizhak Shamir, Prime Minister of Israel 19831984, 19861992
The past leaders of our movement left us a clear message to keep Eretz Israel from the Sea to the River Jordan for future generations, for the mass aliya (Jewish immigration), and for the Jewish people, all of whom will be gathered into this country.Former Prime Minister Yitzhak Shamir. Declaration at a Tel Aviv memorial service for former Likud leaders, November 1990. Jerusalem Domestic Radio Service.
The settlement of the Land of Israel is the essence of Zionism. Without settlement, we will not fulfill Zionism. Its that simple.Yitzhak Shamir, Maariv, 02/21/1997.
(The Palestinians) would be crushed like grasshoppers ... heads smashed against the boulders and walls.Israeli Prime Minister (at the time), Yitzhak Shamir, in a speech to Jewish settlers, New York Times April 1, 1988
Benjamin Netanyahu, Prime Minister of Israel 19961999
Israel should have exploited the repression of the demonstrations in China, when world attention focused on that country, to carry out mass expulsions among the Arabs of the territories.Benyamin Netanyahu, then Israeli Deputy Foreign Minister, former Prime Minister of Israel, speaking to students at Bar Ilan University, from the Israeli journal Hotam, November 24, 1989.
Ehud Barak, Prime Minister of Israel 19992001
The Palestinians are like crocodiles, the more you give them meat, they want more .Ehud Barak, Prime Minister of Israel at the timeAugust 28, 2000. Reported in the Jerusalem Post, August 30, 2000
If we thought that instead of 200 Palestinian fatalities, 2,000 dead would put an end to the fighting at a stroke, we would use much more force....Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Barak, quoted in Associated Press, November 16, 2000.
I would have joined a terrorist organization.Ehud Baraks response to Gideon Levy, a columnist for the Haaretz newspaper, when Barak was asked what he would have done if he had been born a Palestinian.
Ariel Sharon, Prime Minister of Israel 2001 to present
It is the duty of Israeli leaders to explain to public opinion, clearly and courageously, a certain number of facts that are forgotten with time. The first of these is that there is no Zionism, colonialization, or Jewish State without the eviction of the Arabs and the expropriation of their lands.Ariel Sharon, Israeli Foreign Minister, addressing a meeting of militants from the extreme right-wing Tsomet Party, Agence France Presse, November 15, 1998.
Everybody has to move, run and grab as many (Palestinian) hilltops as they can to enlarge the (Jewish) settlements because everything we take now will stay ours. Everything we dont grab will go to them.Ariel Sharon, Israeli Foreign Minister, addressing a meeting of the Tsomet Party, Agence France Presse, Nov. 15, 1998.
Al Awda, August 6, 2003