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Reply #81: I would suspect [View All]

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Douglas Carpenter Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Feb-28-08 11:58 PM
Response to Reply #77
81. I would suspect
Edited on Fri Feb-29-08 12:28 AM by Douglas Carpenter
That when Jewish migration first began there was not a general impression among the Palestinian-Arab population that these relatively small Jewish communities had any intention of creating a Zionist state. Probably because most of the early migrants from all that I gather did NOT have that agenda. When Mr. Herzl's book, "The Jewish State" was first released in 1896- besides the Agenda of an explicitly Zionist state starting to gain increased traction among many Jewish people - news of this agenda rapidly spread among the Palestinian-Arab population and throughout the region - both by word of mouth and by the printed word as well.

I would also surmise that when land purchase began to occur in a major way - this also changed the impression. Besides the reality that most of the largest land purchases were from absentee owners - a new foreign idea about what land purchase actually meant was introduced. Previously, as I understand the matter - when land ownership changed hands - the relationship of the tenants to the land generally remained basically unchanged. They continued living and perhaps paying modest rent in terms of produce, labor or perhaps even money as they always had before. However the Zionist purchases frequently came with the expectation that the tenants would have to vacate to make room for colonies of new immigrants. This would have been a foreign concept.

I would also guess that when the numbers of European Jewish immigrants started to reach a certain level - the Palestinian-Arab community reacted with a feeling that they were being taken over. And they reacted like people react when they feel their way of life is threatened by outsiders.

I gather that even the long established old Jewish communities of Palestine along with their Muslim and Christian neighbors were somewhat culture shocked by the ways and customs of these the new European Jewish immigrants who probably clashed with this conservative culture. When their numbers were small - it could be overlooked. As their numbers grew - it would seem that the indigenous people felt their way of life was under mortal threat and land considered holy was being profaned.

I'm sure you have some thoughts about this too. I don't think there is any one single answer to that question.

I suppose this all begs the question as to whether or not it would have been possible to have large scale Jewish migration to Palestine without it resulting in a violent life or death struggle over the same piece of land. I think it would have been possible if the agenda did not include the establishment of an explicitly Jewish state. Given that a state by the very nature of what a state is - I cannot imagine that any indigenous people would have accepted that. Also it would have required the new immigrants to maintain a respectful attitude to the local people and their culture. Unfortunately, once the numbers reached a certain level - the Zionist were no more capable of that than other colonialist throughout history. Western people (and probably other relatively wealthier, more formally educated and technologically advanced people as well) have this terrible tendency to treat local peoples as inferiors and view their cultures with contempt. Even western expatriates, tourist and military people have a terrible tendency to treat third-world peoples this way - even today.
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