BigMo’s Blog

Politics and Economics in Israel

The Lost Palestinian State

From 1948 to 1967, Egypt and Jordan controlled the Gaza Strip and West Bank, respectively. During that period, either of them could have fostered an independent Palestinian state. Interestingly enough, neither of them thought to do so. I’m sure that locked away in the state vaults (probably underneath a pyramid in Egypt’s case) is a memo that explains why. Here’s what I think it says.

April 24, 1949
From: [Redacted]
To: King Abdullah ibn Hussein Al Hashimi
Re: Palestinian State

As your esteemed Majesty is undoubtedly aware, after many months of fighting our glorious armed forces, commanded by the Pasha Glubb, were able to seize most the territory designated by the UN for a Palestinian state. Our attempts to take all of the territory and expand your magnificent kingdom were cruelly defeated by Israel. We humbly suggest that our policy going forward be that we blame EVERYTHING on the Jews.

It has been suggested that although the native peoples in that territory speak Arabic (like us), are predominantly Sunni Muslims (like us), and were until just 27 years ago part of the same British colony as us, they nevertheless deserve a separate state. Several departments in your Majesty’s administration have recently undertaken an analysis of this concept and have come to the following conclusions.

1. The territory in question is extremely small (smaller than the American state of Delaware) and has practically no natural resources worth exploiting.
2. There is very little (17% of the total) arable land suitable for agriculture.
3. The territory in question is completely landlocked, and would be completely dependent on us for trade – assuming that they wouldn’t want to trade with the Zionist enemy. We suppose this also assumes that they have anything worth trading for in the first place (we already have olives).
4. The territory in question has completely inadequate transportation and communication systems.
5. There are no institutions of higher learning.*
6. The territory in question would require a sustained and consistent effort for at least twenty years (and let’s face it, what government can sustain a consistent policy for more that long?), costing tens of billions of dollars (who’s going to give them that kind of dough?).

In conclusion, your Majesty, the place is a dump. Yet, it is now OUR dump!  We would be doing the indigenous peoples (most of whom we are related to) a favor if we were to annex the territory to your Majesty’s kingdom.  Since the people look like us, sound like us, pray like us and act like us – in fact they use to be part of us – your advisors fervently believe that they’ll get over it.**

Humbly and Forever Your Majesty’s Dedicated Servant,

– – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –  –

In April 24, 1950, Jordan annexed that part of “Palestine” it occupied in the wake of the 1948 war with Israel. Only Britain and Pakistan recognized this.

*Bethlehem University (1975), Bir Zeit University (1975), An Najah National University (1977), Hebron University (1980) were established after Israel’s occupation. Only one university, Al Quds (1995) has been established since the Oslo Accord was signed in 1993.

**They did. The Palestine Liberation Organization wasn’t founded until 1964. From 1964 until, well, today, it has directed the bulk of its activities at Israel.

April 22, 2009 Posted by | Middle East | , | Leave a comment