In the Letters to the Editor (1/20/2017), Joel S. Heller channels Kellyanne Conway by presenting alternative facts about the original partition of Israel/Palestine by the United Nations (“Two-state solution could have happened decades ago”). He states, “In 1948 the United Nations declared a ‘two state solution.’ The two states were Israel and Transjordan….” I am very disappointed that the Post would even publish such utter falsehoods.
What actually happened was that the U.N. General Assembly, on Nov. 29, 1947, adopted resolution 181 (II), which provided for the termination of the British Mandate, the progressive withdrawal of British armed forces and the delineation of boundaries between the two States and Jerusalem. The plan included:
• The creation of the Arab and Jewish States not later than Oct.1, 1948;
• Division of Palestine into eight parts: three were allotted to the Arab State and three to the Jewish State; the seventh, the town of Jaffa, was to form an Arab enclave within Jewish territory;
• An international regime for Jerusalem, the eighth division, to be administered by the United Nations Trusteeship Council
(from “The Question of Palestine,” published by the United Nations Department of Public Information, 2003)
Later, on Dec. 11, 1948, the General Assembly adopted resolution 194 (III), in which it delineated ways to resolve the Palestine problem. This resolution held that:
• Refugees wishing to return to their homes and live at peace with their neighbours should be permitted to do so at the earliest practicable date;
• Compensation should be paid for the property of those choosing not to return.
The Assembly also called for the demilitarization and internationalization of Jerusalem and for the protection of, and free access to, the holy places in Palestine.
(Same source as above)
Mr. Heller and the readers of the Arizona Jewish Post are certainly entitled to their opinions on whether or not the actions of the United Nations around the time of the founding of the State of Israel were wise and/or realistic. You and your contributors should not, however, be entitled to present patent falsehoods to the public as factual history.
— David Kohn
Editor’s note: The AJP regrets that it did not properly fact-check Mr. Heller’s letter.