Revising history on June 5, 1967 [Excerpts] |

TBC Staff

Revising history on June 5, 1967 [Excerpts]

With diplomatic efforts to halt Nasser's march to war in tatters, Israel struck first on June 5. Like so many chauvinistic dictators who came before and after him, Nasser fabulously misrepresented the success of his military in the early stages of the conflict. Believing victory against the Zionist enemy was finally at hand, the Baathist leaders of Syria and King Hussein of Jordan blundered into battle on two more fronts.

After six days, it was over. Israel had once again inflicted a stinging defeat on Arab armies. Israeli forces controlled the Sinai Peninsula, the Golan Heights and the West Bank of the Jordan River. And for people of a certain persuasion, history began.

No one had ever heard of the "occupied" Gaza Strip or the "occupied" West Bank before June 10, 1967. Not because there hadn't been occupations in both places. Of course, Egypt had occupied Gaza and Jordan had occupied the West Bank since 1948. And if there had been any inclination on the part of the Arab world to create even the rudiments of a Palestinian state, it might have occurred at any time in the preceding 19 years.

But as with so much else, you have to ignore history — and the facts — to buy into the belief system that constitutes the mythology of anti-Zionism. Attributing the Palestinian-Israeli conflict to the Israeli occupation, pretending that no other occupation came before it, is far easier than explaining the unanimous Arab rejection of the 1947 U.N. partition plan and the failure of Arab leaders to pay more than lip service to Palestinian statehood.