Writer didn’t have his facts right in criticizing letter
On Feb. 20, Bruce Trachtenberg wrote: “it should come as no surprise that… Mary Folsom never answered” the questions that he posed on Jan. 14.
As I had noted on Jan. 20, his letter contained too many factual errors to address. But since he persisted in his “challenge,” I must respond. Unfortunately, Mr. Trachtenberg’s February letter crossed one I had just written. So, in compliance with The Gazette’s one-letter-a-month policy, I waited until now.
Mr. Trachtenberg asked: “Why didn’t the Arab neighbors recognize Israel when the world — the United Nations — created the only Jewish state (at the same time as it created a Palestinian state then known as Trans-Jordan and now simply known as Jordan)?”
The short answer is that Mr. Trachtenberg’s information is erroneous. Here are the facts:
The Emirate — not the Palestinian State — of “Trans-Jordan” was created in 1922-23, decades before the founding of the United Nations. At the same time, the Mandate for Palestine was established, not a “Jewish State.” The Mandate’s goal was to eventually implement the 1917 Balfour Declaration, for “establishment in Palestine of a national home for the Jewish people, it being clearly understood that nothing should be done which might prejudice the civil and religious rights of existing non-Jewish communities in Palestine.”
According to the 1922 British census, these non-Jewish communities comprised 89 percent of Palestine’s population — almost 700,000 people.
The state of Trans-Jordan was recognized as the Kingdom of Jordan in 1946. The United Nations never “create[d] a Jewish State.” In 1947, The United Nations issued Resolution 181 proposing dissolution of the British Mandate of Palestine, giving the Zionist Jewish Settlers 55 percent of the land.
Arab nations rejected the proposal because it allocated the majority of the land to a minority of the population.
A civil war ensued, in which Jewish armed forces prevailed. Israel declared itself a state in 1948. In 1949, an armistice granted Israel all of the territory defined in Resolution 181, plus an additional 23 percent of Palestine, often called the “green line” area, or the “pre-1967” border. For several years, the Arab states have continually offered to recognize Israel within this area. Israel has ignored this offer.
In 1967, Israeli forces overtook the remaining 22 percent of the Palestinian mandate, referred to as the “West Bank.” Israel continues to occupy and colonize this area today, and deprive its Palestinian population of basic human rights, in violation of the Geneva Convention and several U.N. Resolutions, not to mention the Oslo Accords.
Mr. Trachtenberg issued other “challenges” in relation to Gaza. Again, the short answer is that Mr. Trachtenberg’s information is erroneous. But I’m out of space.
Paper should follow up on cat shooting
Several weeks ago I tried to email you about a notice in The Gazette concerning a young boy/man who shot a kitten in the eye at close range with a BB gun. It was horrifying, and I was asking that you not just “let it go” but, somehow follow through with whatever you could.
You may have, but (as you might understand) things in the paper tend to get lost — no one got back to me, tho’ there was a call, just to verify that I was who I said I was. I was.
But I am writing again to urge that the power of the paper give this young cat some justification to survive (if it did) such a senseless stupidity.
Barbara Dobbins Stratton
Categories: Letters to the Editor