Ethnic Cleansing of Invented People. By Miko Peled

Mostafa Tamimi from Nabi Saleh, Bahjat Zaalan and his son Ramdan from Gaza died on my fiftieth birthday and just a few days after Newt Gingrich declared them an invented people. They were murdered by the Israeli terrorist organization, the IDF, an organization that is supported and funded by the US.  One Israeli terrorist shot the invented Tamimi in the head with a tear gas canister, and another Israeli terrorist fired a rocket that murdered the invented Zaalan and his boy Ramadan.  Both terrorists were educated and trained by Israel, and armed by the US.  The Israeli terrorists are not invented but quite real, and they are safe, protected by the apartheid regime that trained and sent them on their missions, and the Israeli court system will make sure that they are never brought to justice. This is how Israel’s well-oiled ethnic cleansing machine operates.

The Zionist ethnic cleansing of Palestine is not a thing of the past but an ongoing campaign that is executed by three arms of the State of Israel: The education system, a dedicated bureaucracy and the security forces. The education system is dedicated to indoctrinating and producing soldiers and bureaucrats who will execute and enforce the ethnic cleansing. The bureaucracy is charged with making rules that make life unlivable for Palestinians.  Rules that restrict Palestinian access to their lands, and restrict their ability to travel freely to work and school. This same bureaucracy then demands that Palestinians pay for permits to be allowed do these very same basic things that they were denied. The security forces, the most obvious of which is the IDF, are charged with enforcing the restrictions, fighting off the resistance, armed or peaceful, and terrorizing the “invented” people of Palestine.

Since my father was a general and I served as a soldier in the IDF terrorist organization, people often ask me how is it that Israeli children who are raised in a Western style democracy become such monsters once they are in uniform?  The detailed answer can be found in my book, The General’s Son due out in February 2012, but the short answer is this: Education – Racism requires a mindset that is fashioned by education.  In order to rationalize and justify the ethnic cleansing the Israeli education system portrays Palestinians as culturally inferior, violent and bent on the annihilation of the Jews, and at the same time, void of a true national identity. Palestinian national identity is but a figment of some anti-Semitic imagination.

Israeli children are educated to see the Palestinians as a problem that must be solved and as a threat that must be eliminated. They can go through life, as I did growing up in Jerusalem, without ever meeting a Palestinian child. They know nothing of the life or culture of Palestinians who quite often live only several hundred meters from them.

Palestinians are portrayed as an existential threat through absurd comparisons like that of Yasser Arafat to Hitler, the Palestinians to Nazis, and the Palestinian resistance to Al Qaeda. Since Israeli kids never meet Palestinians what they learn in school, particularly in the school textbooks, is all that they know. In fact it is remarkable that even though they live so close to one another, much if not all of what Israelis know about their Palestinian neighbors comes from high school text books and popular racist stereotypes. Israelis don’t know that Palestinians never had an army, that they do not posses a single tank, a single warship or fighter jet, that they don’t have a single artillery battery and do not in fact pose a military threat at all.  According to a new book by Dr. Nurit Peled-Elhanan, not a single photo of a person who is a Palestinian exists in Israeli textbooks and there are millions of Palestinians in and around Israel.  Israelis don’t learn about Palestinian doctors and teachers, engineers and writers. They don’t learn Palestinian poetry or prose and they don’t read the works of Palestinian historians.

At a recent lecture I mentioned the ethnic cleansing of Palestine and someone called out: “What ethnic cleansing?” People are unaware of the ethnic cleansing taking place in Palestine because Israel hides it well and the mainstream media doesn’t care enough to ask. In mainstream peace groups and dialogue groups that discuss Palestine/Israel, a basic Israeli condition is not to bring up issues like the ethnic cleansing because Israel doesn’t like to talk about it.

But for the past 64 years ethnic cleansing of Palestine is what drives the Zionist policies towards Palestinians. All Zionist governments and all Zionist political parties left right and center support the ethnic cleansing.  The Israeli judicial system lets the Israeli authorities get away with abuse, theft and murder as long as they are perpetuated against Palestinians. Had these same crimes been committed against Israeli Jews they would have been prosecuted to the full extent of the law.

Zionist supporters like to bring up the fact that on November 29, 1947 the United Nations voted to partition Palestine into a Jewish sate and an Arab state.  What is left out of the Zionist story is that within one year of the vote Israeli forces had managed to capture close to 80% of Palestine, destroy close to 500 Palestinian towns and villages, kill scores of unarmed civilians and force the exile of some 800,000 Palestinians.

Then, when the UN passed resolution194 in December of 1948, calling for the refugees to be allowed to return to their homes, Israel proceeded to build cities and towns, parks and highways for the use of Jewish Israelis on Palestinian land. Then the Knesset began passing laws that prohibit the return of the refugees and allow the new state to confiscate their lands.

After the war was over, the Palestinians who remained within the newly created Jewish state were forced to become citizens of a state that despised them and saw them as a “problem” and a “threat.” They were designated as “The Arabs of Israel” a designation that stripped them of a national identity and denied them any rights to the land and provided them very limited rights as citizens. From being the rightful owners of their lands and their country they now existed at the pleasure of the new owner of the land, the state of Israel. Palestinian refugees were forced into concentration camps, conveniently called refugee camps, and those that tried to return were shot.  A military unit was created for the purpose of punishing Palestinian refugee who “infiltrated” back into their homeland, now called Israel.  It was called Unit 101, the notorious Ariel Sharon led it and it made a name for itself as a murderous gang with a license to kill Palestinians.

So regardless of the myth, now perpetuated by Newt Gingrich among others, that says there was no forced ethnic cleansing, we know today that the creation of Israel was made possible through a systematic campaign of ethnic cleansing, conducted by the Jewish militia, involving massacres, terrorism, and the wholesale looting of an entire nation.

Newt Gingrich, being the history buff that he is, might be interested in a story I mention in my book The General’s Son, about my mother. She was born and raised in Jerusalem and she remembers the homes of Palestinians families in neighborhoods in West Jerusalem. She told me that when she was a child, on Saturday afternoons she would go for walks through these neighborhoods, admiring the beauty of the homes, watching families sit together in their beautiful gardens. In 1948 when the Palestinian families were forced out of West Jerusalem, my mother was offered one of those beautiful, spacious homes but she refused. At age 22, the wife of a young army officer with little means and with two small children, she refused a beautiful spacious home, offered to her completely free because she could not bear the thought of living in the home of a family that was forced out and now lives in a refugee camp. “The coffee was still warm on the tables as the soldiers came in and began the looting” she told me.  “Can you imagine how much those families, those mothers must miss their homes.” She would ask and she continued, “I remember seeing the truckloads of loot, taken by the Israeli soldiers from these homes. How were they not ashamed of themselves?” there are thousands upon thousands of homes in cities all over the country that were taken.

Moving forward now to 1967 and the myth that Israel was fighting for its existence as it was attacked by Arab armies from all directions.  Much was written about this but nothing is more revealing than the minutes of the meetings of the IDF general staff from June 1967, just prior to the war. According to the generals, one of whom was my father, Matti Peled, not only was there no existential threat but the generals clearly state that the Egyptian army needed at least a year and a half before it would be ready for war and therefore this was an opportune time to attack and destroy it.  The army pressured the cabinet to authorize an attack and indeed the cabinet approved an attack against Egypt.  The IDF destroyed the Egyptian army and then went on to attack Jordan and Syria. It took the IDF six days and 700 casualties to kill an estimated 15,000 Arab forces, take the West Bank, the Golan Heights and The Sinai Peninsula.  One may like to think this was a miracle but it was a well-planned, well-executed attack against countries that had no viable military force.  The Israeli army had thus fulfilled its goal of conquering the entire Land of Israel, and the De-Arabizing of Palestine could now proceed into the West Bank and Gaza.

Since the early days of the State of Israel the IDF made it its mission to be the most brutal bully in the region.  Today the IDF has one purpose: to conduct an all out war against Palestinians by terrorizing Palestinian civilians, kidnapping children from their homes and using brutal force against protesters. We are reminded of the intensity of IDF cruelty every so often, the latest major display being the three-week bloodbath in Gaza that began on December 27, 2008. Hundreds of tons of bombs were dropped by Israeli pilots on Gaza, followed by a massive invasion of land forces.  All this for the purpose of  terrorizing a defenseless civilian population that includes 800,000 children.

Now that Israel has been in control of the West Bank for over four decades it had built and invested there heavily.  But all of the investment and construction in the West Bank was made to bring Jews into the West Bank.  Palestinian lands are being taken at an alarming pace, their homes are destroyed and thousands are incarcerated, while industry, roads, malls, schools and gated communities with swimming pools are being built for Jews only.  Water, which is the scarcest resource of all, is controlled and distributed by the Israeli water authority, as follows: Per capita, Israelis receive 300 cubic meters of water per year.  In comparison, per capita Palestinians in the West Bank and Gaza receive 35-85 cubic meters per year, while the World Health Organization recommends a minimum of 100 cubic meter of water per person per year. But what is even worse is that per capita, Israeli settlers in the West Bank are allocated 1500 cubic meters of water per year. Jews in the West Bank live with green lawns and swimming pools while Palestinians quite often get no water at all.  Perhaps invented people have no need for water.

De-Arabizing the history of Palestine is another crucial element of the ethnic cleansing. 1500 years of Arab and Muslim rule and culture in Palestine are trivialized, evidence of its existence is being destroyed and all this is done to make the absurd connection between the ancient Hebrew civilization and today’s Israel. The most glaring example of this today is in Silwan, (Wadi Hilwe) a town adjacent to the Old City of Jerusalem with some 50,000 residents.  Israel is expelling families from Silwan and destroying their homes because it claims that king David built a city there some 3000 years ago. Thousands of families will be made homeless so that Israel can build a park to commemorate a king that may or may not have lived 3000 years ago. Not a shred of historical evidence exists that can prove King David ever lived yet Palestinian men, women, children and the elderly along with their schools and mosques, churches and ancient cemeteries and any evidence of their existence must be destroyed and then denied so that Zionist claims to exclusive rights to the land may be substantiated.

Once we connect the dots it is not hard to see that the occupation of the West Bank and Gaza is only a small part of the Israeli Palestinian issue. The greater issue is the ongoing ethnic cleansing of Palestine by the Zionist state.  The way forward for Israelis and Palestinians alike is to oppose the ethnic cleansing by opposing all its manifestations. This means supporting the movement to boycott, divest and place sanctions on Israel, or BDS for short, it means actively participating in the popular non-violent struggle in Palestine and it means challenging the racist laws that govern Israel by defying them. There has to be a clear and unequivocal call to recognize that the IDF is a terrorist organization and its officers are war criminals. Furthermore, the reprehensible discrimination against Palestinians, whether they live in Israel/Palestine or not, practiced by the security officials at Ben Gurion airport and other points of entry to Israel/Palestine must be challenged. The struggle for a democracy in our shared homeland is no different than the struggle at Tahrir square and can in fact be seen as part of the Arab Spring.


  1. Very eloquent and moving commentary. Thanks to Prof Hisham Ahmed for forwarding to me. I look forward to reading the book.

  2. Thanks Miko. Your words are very hard hitting. It boggles the mind when the history is seen for what it is and listed. The violence against Palestinians is relentless. The word “terrorism” aptly describes the IDF and Israel’s campaign of the last 64 years. Otherwise, it has lost its meaning. The one place where terrorism happens, guaranteed, every day is in the whole of historic Palestine and it’s the Israelis perpetrating it against the indigenous Palestinians. We also need to imagine how it could be different, and how Palestinians and Israelis can build a future together like you have with your Palestinian friends and Israelis who care. It is clear that together the two peoples of the future will be a dynamic force in the region. I am optimistic.

  3. In approximately 2003, I picked up a few books and journals in a second-hand store. One of the journals was a soft-covered academic publication, possibly a journal of anthropology, I can’t quite remember the title.

    The article of interest in this journal was called something like “Plan Daleth”. The article, in several parts, purported to describe how the Palestinians were first cleansed out of Palestine by trickery. One of the tactics used, as best I can recall, was that the Jewish forces captured the single radio station which broadcast to the towns and villages of Palestine. They began to broadcast that Jewish forces had decimated a certain village or villages along a certain road, and were now headed toward the next Palestinian village along the same road.

    The helpless Palestinians, on hearing this false news over the radio, and having no way to check it, and having no troops of their own, fled in terror with whatever they could carry. The Jewish forces then moved in to occupy and loot the abandoned homes and properties.

    The article above states: “The coffee was still warm on the tables as the soldiers came in and began the looting”. Could this statement be evidence of the Jewish execution of “Plan Daleth,” using false broadcasts at a captured radio station to terrorize the Palestinians out of their homes and off their ancient lands?

  4. Miko, Your writing is always powerful because you have the courage to say things about the terrorist occupation of Palestine that almost no one else dares say… & you have the credibility! I thank you for the work you are doing against the pervasive myths that keep Americans blind to the savage oppression of the Palestinian people and the continual theft of what remains of their land. Steve Kowit

  5. The situation in Palestine is further aggravated by conservative Christians in the US who believe that the Bible legitimizes this policy of racism and apartheid by directing the Jews back to historical Israel to prepare for the return of Jesus and the end of the world. This behavior on the part of Israel should not and would not be tolerated without this irrational belief.

  6. Dear Mr. Peled,

    I certainly hope you will be able to come to Eugene OR and other Oregon cities. Here, Temple Beth Israel ( is starting a 9-session course beginning Jan 22 on “Engaging Israel” apparently bringing faculty from the Hartman Institute.

    Sometimes we feel out numbered and out resourced.

    About iEngage

    The goal of the Engaging Israel project is to respond to growing feelings of disenchantment and disinterest toward Israel among an ever-increasing number of Jews worldwide by creating a new narrative regarding the significance of Israel for Jewish life. This narrative will serve as a foundation for a new covenant between Israel and world Jewry, elevating the existing discourse from one with a crisis-based focus to one rooted in Jewish values and ideas.

    The core feature of the “traditional” Israel narrative was the precariousness of Jewish survival. In this narrative, Jewish existence, both in Israel and around the world, was viewed as threatened by inevitable and often imminent danger. One of the long-lasting effects of the Holocaust generation and that following it was the shaping of a consciousness deeply suspicious and fearful of the world. This inspired the creation of a Jewish identity in which the survival and perpetuation of the Jewish people and the defense of Jews in danger became central values.

    Political, economic, and cultural success among Jews in many communities throughout the world, coupled with a growth in their own Jewish vitality and creativity, have diminished the compelling nature of the narrative of crisis in the lives of many Jews. At the same time, there is the success story that is Israel. Without denying the dangers that Israel still faces on a daily basis, its military power and prowess render a narrative of crisis less meaningful. When one adds to the equation the economic vitality of modern Israel, it becomes increasingly difficult to portray Israel as a weak country in dire need of help from Jews around the world.

    Led by a team of internationally renowned scholars in the fields of Jewish studies, Middle East politics, and history, the Engaging Israel project is committed to addressing core questions pertaining to the necessity and significance of the Jewish national enterprise; how a Jewish state should exercise power; why a Jew who lives outside of Israel should care about Israel; and what the State of Israel can offer the world.

    Engaging Israel brings together a team of world-leading scholars and public intellectuals who specialize in areas such as Jewish thought, political theory, and international law, and who are leading forces in rethinking the meanings and significance of Zionism and Israel and communicating these ideas to Jews worldwide.

    Now is the time to invite Jews from around the world to engage in thinking about the meaning that Israel can have in their lives and how they can be enriched and positively influenced by the reality of a Jewish nation. Only a narrative that gives meaning to Jewish statehood and sovereignty and that articulates a vision of Israel that lives up to the highest standard of Jewish values, morality, and democracy can form the basis for a new covenant for Jews around the world. The Shalom Hartman Institute Engaging Israel Project is working to generate a conversation that will celebrate Israel for what it is and, more importantly, for what it will become, which will in turn engender a commitment to taking part in building such an Israel.

  7. Arthur, thank you. That Wikipedia item states in part:

    “Khalidi calls Plan Dalet a ‘Master Plan for the Conquest of Palestine’. He points to the Zionist ideas of transfer and of a Jewish state in all of Palestine, and to the offensive character of the military operations of the Zionists as the main proof of his interpretation.”

    Arthur, there is a real map in the U.S. Library of Congress which appears to plan for this. From what I can tell, very few people are taking the map seriously, and they should. It shows not only all of Palestinian as comprised in “Hebrewland”, but is a world map of socialist continental and regional unions. There is no Canada on that map, which is why it caught my attention, given the plans underway now — in fact, underway for decades — which WILL eliminate Canada as a nation, and even as a place name. If Hebrewland is evidence of a Zionist plan, then so must be the rest of the map; therefore, the conversion of the world to continental unions — largely accomplished, now — and the absorption and disappearance of Canada, must a part of that same Zionist plan.

    The map was completed in October, 1941, before Pearl Harbor. It seems to me this vision of Palestine as comprised in a state of Hebrewland was therefore well laid before anyone had any inkling of a “6,000,000” genocide of Jews as a pretext for taking over Palestine.

    I’ve started a blog on it, here:

    See paragraph 26 on that page, transcribed from the 1941 map:

    “26. The area of the Holy Land of the ancient Hebrews, at present known as Palestine and Trans-Jordan, and the adjacent requisite regions as outlined on map, for considerations of history and the imperative necessity to alleviate a post-war refugee problem, shall be unified as a demilitarized independent republic of ‘Hebrewland’.”

  8. Thank you very much for your testimony on the situation of the ethnic cleansing of the Palestinian people since the Zionism set foot in Palestine. We believe this writing a paper of great value to argue anti-Zionist in forums and in our publications in our activities. With people like you and this document, the Zionist propaganda is very to expose… Greetings and happy New Year 2012… Salam also we have the TunSol channel on YouTube

  9. Recently-freed Jews from the extermination camps were a prime recruiting source for Zionist terrorist organizations at the end of WWII because the U.S. conspired with Zionist leaders to deny Jewish refugees admission to the U.S., thus giving the choice of remaining indefinitely in wretched refugee camps or accepting Zionist offers to go to Palestine to kill Palestinians.
    Truman refused during all of 1946 to accept Jewish refugees into the U.S. while trying to force Britain’s Labor Government to issue 100,000 visas for Palestine.

    1. “Truman refused during all of 1946 to accept Jewish refugees into the U.S. while trying to force Britain’s Labor Government to issue 100,000 visas for Palestine.”

      Actually that’s not completely true, Truman did refuse them entry to the U.S. but he did not want to let them into Palestine either. He saw it was not in the interest of the U.S. to do so and the problems it would create in the Arab (oil) world. He was pressured as all US presidents have been since, by a combination of the Jewish lobby/vote and evangelical Christians who have this fantasy of Zionist return for the 2nd coming of Christ (I fight with my sister about this all the time). So he reluctantly (with re-election in mind) signed the order for the 100,000 initial entry, which btw Britain did also, again not wanting the Jewish refugees of WWII to flood into their country either.

      1. Thank you, Mary, for the info. I know Truman was conflicted because two of his trusted cabinat members, Dean Acheson and George Marshall, were concerned about maintaining good relations with the Arab world and were opposed to his precipitate recognition of Israel. But, as Truman put it, there were more voters in 1948 (and 1946) who were passionately supportive of Israel than not. Clark Clifford, Truman’s close advisor, was a supporter of the Zionist position as well.

        I agree that Truman would rather have avoided the issue, but he felt he needed the votes.

  10. Five years ago I would have despised you for writing this, and if I read it, would have only done so in order to further regard you as a traitor against the progress and peace of Western civilization. And that was because I was saturated with ideological propaganda and truly ignorant regarding the Arab world. Then I read the amazing books and travel journals of Freya Stark and (although less impressive) Gertrude Bell, which led me into an entire body of maybe not so much more objective as less subjective books and documents on the area and its people. I might not be much better informed, but I am now certainly less ignorant, and am able to read this without becoming emotionally defensive. No matter what happens next, the world’s population is maturing in a good way, and communication is the reason why.

  11. The contempt Ben-Gurion and his government felt for the then 800,000 evicted Palestinians is well illustrated in a 1948 report by the Near East Department of Israel’s Foreign Ministry: “The [Palestinian] refugees will find their place in the diaspora. Those who can resist will live thanks to natural selection, the others will simply crumble. Some of them will persist, but the majority will become a human heap, the scum of the earth and will sink into the lowest levels of the Arab world.” (Israel State Archives, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, files – refugees, no. 2444/19)

  12. Miko, you are a Hero. God bless you for what you do. For your message of truth, peace and fairness. You are an inspiration.
    Peter Foley.

  13. in fact me as a muslim thinking that the holy bible was modified by some people who want to benefit from the people religions ! it is really unbelievable to believe in that the god promised some people in a land and those people are his chosen people , is the god racist ? ignoring that there were other people live in the land of palestine ?

  14. Mike, I heard your commentary about Israel’s objection to being called an apartheid state and had to find out who you were! I’m impressed with your bravery and admire what you do. Keep up this work, world peace may depend on you and brace people like you.


  15. I read your book about your father and was very moved. I have supported Palestine all my life and do all I can to bring it to people’s attention, not easy when then is so much propoganda about. I live in Australia now and it is unnerving to see and hear the blind support for What the Israelis are doing and when I talk to people and put the Palestinian people’s struggle forward they are shocked to hear what is going on and they always say we didn’t know. If only they had the money to spend on Hasbara type influence.

    1. Whenever I hear commentators ask how shall we get the Palestinians to recognize the right of Israel to exist, I wonder where the question for how shall we get the Israelis to recognize the right of Palestinian to exist is in these conversations.

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