Walter Laqueur on Assassinations of Arab Binationalists (1972)

The attempts to find ‘reasonable Arab leaders’ continued. During the war [[World War II]] a ‘Committee of Five’ had been established, which included some of the most respected members of the Jewish community. With the blessing of the Jewish agency they made contact with leading Arab personalities in yet another effort to find a common language. They met and talked and prepared more blueprints, only to realize in the end that in spite of all the outward civilities there was no common ground. There were occasional rays of hope: at one stage Ihud found Fawzi Darwish Hussaini, a respected Arab personality and a cousin of the mufti, willing to sign an agreement with his Jewish friends providing for a bi-national state based on the principle of no domination of one nation over the other. He suggested the immediate establishment of political clubs and a daily newspaper to combat the influence of the Arab war party. On 11 November 1946, five members of Young Palestine, Fawzi’s group, signed an agreement concerning common political action with Ihud representatives, but this promising initiative came to a sudden and tragic end. Twelve days later Fawzi was killed by Arab terrorists and his group dispersed. ‘My cousin stumbled and received his proper punishment’, Jamal Hussaini, one of the leaders of the extremist party, declared a few days later. In September 1947, Sami Taha, a prominent Haifa trade resident, was killed; his society declared itself in favor of a Palestinian, not an Arab state, acknowledging that Jews too had certain rights. He never pressed the point very strongly, but the mere suspicion of such lack of patriotism was sufficient to make him a target for extremists. With these and other murders, the few hopes for a Zionist-Arab dialogue were buried and the stage set for a direct military confrontation.

= = =

from A History of Zionism by Walter Laqueur (NY: Schocken Books, 1972/1989), p 267.

RADICAL ARCHIVES NOTE: On the page before, Laqueur describes Ihud (Union) as a Zionist, binationalist, anti-partition group which included Judah Magnes, as well as members of Brit Shalom and Hashomer Hatzair.

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1 Response to “Walter Laqueur on Assassinations of Arab Binationalists (1972)”



  1. 1 Neues aus den Archiven der radikalen (und nicht so radikalen) Linken « Entdinglichung Trackback on May 26, 2010 at 8:39 am

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