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Chapter 8: Our Fathers’ Children
 
 
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binstigated by the British themselves.”

bArab nationalist anti-Zionism began to bear “fruit.” In b1909 physical attacks in Jewish settlements in the Galilee led to bthe formation of Jewish self-defense groups (Bar Biora, bHashomer). Jews were killed by Arab marauders in Yavneel, bBefit Gan, and Sajra. Despite the fact that the naive Jews had bpaid good money for land, the Arabs now discovered the concept bof the “dispossessed.” Thus, the Jewish settlers of Um Juni or bDeganya were accused of dispossessing the Arabs, though they bpathetically waved their legal “deed.” Arab hatred was now so bpalpable that in November 1910 even Ruppin suggested build- bing a separate Jewish community in Haifa, “since it is un- bpleasant for Jews to live together with Arabs, especially in view bof the attacks by the anti-Jewish paper Al-Karmel.”

bThe Arab nationalists concentrated on halting Jewish im- bmigration and land purchase. They understood, quite correctly, bthat the Zionists’ eventual aim was a Jewish state and a Jewish bmajority, and these they swore to fight to the death.

bIn 1911 some 150 Arab notables sent a telegram to the Par- bliament in Constantinople, demanding an end to Jewish immi- bgration and land purchase. Natzer founded a group in Haifa for bthe purpose of boycotting the Jews. “We shall not sell to them, bbuy from them, or rent them houses,” he declared. A similar bgroup called the Ottoman Patriotic Party was founded in Jaffa. bThe crisis escalated as hundreds of Arabs attacked the Jewish bsettlement of Merchavya, pillaging and looting food, clothing, band wheat in the fields.

bThe Zionist leadership now prepared to meet in the Tenth bZionist Congress. Ruppin pleaded that the speakers beware of binflaming the Arabs, “that each speaker weigh every word, and bthat it would be best if questions concerning the Land of Israel bnot be discussed at all, except in committees.”

bNevertheless, the Tenth Zionist Congress was the first that bdealt with the Arab question. Shlomo Kaplansky, the delegate of bPoale Zion, the Laborites, expressed his confidence that despite beverything, understanding could yet be reached with the “Arab bdemocracy [sic].” Yitzhak Ben Zvi, in later years to become bIsrael’s second president, elaborated on the difference between bthe Arab Christian intellectuals and property owners (who were bhostile) and the general Muslim population who would sup- b 

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Chapter 8: Our Fathers’ Children