Greater Palestine

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Greater Palestine[1] (Arabic: فلسطين الكبرى‎) is a irredentist notion used by some Palestinian nationalists seeking to establish a Palestinian nation state over the whole of former Mandatory Palestine (the current State of Israel, the West Bank and the Gaza Strip) and the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan. The term is contrary to the terms Greater Syria and the Arab homeland.

History[edit]

In 1920, the United Kingdom established Mandatory Palestine over the south of the Levant between Sinai and Mandatory Iraq. The Emirate of Transjordan was set up as a British protectorate within the Palestine Mandate, but outside the stipulations of the Balfour Declaration.

Jordan[edit]

In a press conference Ahmad Shukeiri declared that Jordan is "the homeland of the Palestine Liberation Organization and Jordan's people are its people." He also reminded that "the return of the East Bank to the motherland, in mind and conscience, and in spirit and body, is a basic step on the road of the return of the stolen homeland."[2]

During the 1970–71 civil war that erupted in Jordan between Palestinian guerrilla groups and the Jordanian Army, the Palestinians managed to take control of some cities as Ramtha, Irbid, Jerash. In mid-1971, the PLO was defeated and exiled to Lebanon. This was seen as an attempt to take over all of Jordan as a first step to liberate the rest of "historical Palestine" as seen by PLO.[3]

The PLO until late 1980s continued to make irredentist claims by expressing their desire for Jordan to be part of the next Palestinian state. As of the early 1970s, the Palestinians began to be stereotyped [in Jordan]. Transjordanians started to refer to Palestinian-Jordanians as Baljikiyyah (Belgians). This epithet continues to be used as a national insult against Palestinian Jordanians today.[4][5]

A 1975 article by the PLO:

North Vietnam, which was used as the base for the success of the revolution in the South, must be our model. ... Since we cannot use all Arab countries to that end, for fear of collision between the strategy of our resolution and that of those countries, we must change the regime in Transjordan or topple it, in order to turn that territory into the firm base of our Revolution. ... We must then strive to abrogate the Jordanian entity and substitute for the revolutionary entity... We ought not, however, fall into the trap of the Israelis who claim that Jordan is the homeland of the Palestinians where they can establish their state. ... But Palestinian Transjordan can only be the first towards Greater Palestine, insofar that it will be a base for our expansion west of the River [Jordan].[6]

Article 2 of the PLO charter:

Palestine in its mandatory borders is an indivisible territorial unit.[7]

Yasser Arafat in letter to Jordanian Students' Congress in Baghdad on 12 November 1974:

Jordan is ours, Palestine is ours, and we shall build our national entity on the whole of this land after having freed it of both the Zionist presence and the reactionary traitor's [i.e. King Hussein's] presence.[8]

Hamas mural in the West Bank

From the River to the Sea[edit]

From the River to the Sea (Arabic: min al-nahr ila al-bahr ) is, and forms part of, a popular political slogan used by some Palestinian nationalists. It contains the notion that the land which lies between the River Jordan and the Mediterranean Sea be entirely placed under Arab rule at the cost of the State of Israel, excluding the contested Golan Heights, conquered from Syria in 1967 and unilaterally annexed in 1981.[9] It has been used frequently by Arab leaders[10][11] and is often chanted at anti-Israel demonstrations.[12]

The slogan is versatile with numerous variations including "From the river to the sea, Palestine will be free,"[13] "Palestine is ours from the river to the sea," "Palestine is Islamic from the river to the sea,"[14] Islamic scholars also claim the Mahdi will also declare the slogan in the following format: "Jerusalem is Arab Muslim, and Palestine — all of it, from the river to the sea — is Arab Muslim."[15]

See also[edit]

Bibliography[edit]

  • Ayoob, Mohammed (2014). The Middle East in World Politics (Routledge Revivals). Washington D.C.: Routledge, 2014. ISBN 1317811275.

References[edit]

  1. ^ Pipes, Daniel (26 March 1992). "Greater Syria: The History of an Ambition". Oxford University Press – via Google Books.
  2. ^ Massad, Joseph A. (11 September 2001). "Colonial Effects: The Making of National Identity in Jordan". Columbia University Press – via Google Books.
  3. ^ Migdal, Joel S. (18 February 2014). "Shifting Sands: The United States in the Middle East". Columbia University Press – via Google Books.
  4. ^ Massad, Joseph (26 May 2009). Heacock, Roger (ed.). Producing the Palestinian as Other : Jordan and the Palestinians*. Presses de l’Ifpo. pp. 273–292 – via OpenEdition Books.
  5. ^ Massad, Joseph (26 May 2009). Heacock, Roger (ed.). Temps et espaces en Palestine : Flux et résistances identitaires. Presses de l’Ifpo. pp. 273–292 – via OpenEdition Books.
  6. ^ Karsh, Efraim; Kumaraswamy, P. R. (12 September 2018). "Israel, the Hashemites, and the Palestinians: The Fateful Triangle". Psychology Press – via Google Books.
  7. ^ Israel, the Hashemites, and the Palestinians: The Fateful Triangle, 2003, Frank Cass, edited by Efraim Karsh & P. R. Kumaraswamy, chapter by Raphael Israeli, page 53
  8. ^ Pipes, Daniel (26 March 1992). "Greater Syria: The History of an Ambition". Oxford University Press – via Google Books.
  9. ^ David Patterson (18 October 2010). A Genealogy of Evil: Anti-Semitism from Nazism to Islamic Jihad. Cambridge University Press. p. 249. ISBN 978-1-139-49243-0. ...except the boundary indicated in their slogan "From the river to the sea," which stipulated the obliteration of the Jewish state.
  10. ^ Ron Rosenbaum (18 December 2007). Those Who Forget the Past: The Question of Anti-Semitism. Random House Publishing Group. p. 85. ISBN 978-0-307-43281-0. Only two years ago he [Saddam Hussein] declared on Iraqi television: "Palestine is Arab and must be liberated from the river to the sea and all the Zionists who emigrated to the land of Palestine must leave."
  11. ^ Alan Dowty (2008). Israel/Palestine. Polity. p. 160. ISBN 978-0-7456-4243-7. One exception was Faysal al- Husayni, who stated in his 2001 Beirut speech: "We may lose or win [tactically] but our eyes will continue to aspire to the strategic goal, namely, to Palestine from the river to the sea."
  12. ^ Barry Rubin (25 May 2010). The Muslim Brotherhood: The Organization and Policies of a Global Islamist Movement. Palgrave Macmillan. p. 124. ISBN 978-0-230-10687-1. Thus, the MAB slogan "Palestine must be free, from the river to the sea" is now ubiquitous in anti-Israeli demonstrations in the UK...
  13. ^ Melanie Phillips (2007). Londonistan. Encounter Books. p. 116. ISBN 978-1-59403-197-7. The crowd chanted: "From the river to the sea, Palestine will be free."
  14. ^ Anne Marie Oliver Research Scholar in Global and International Studies UC Santa Barbara; Paul F. Steinberg Research Scholar in Global and International Studies UC Santa Barbara (1 February 2005). The Road to Martyrs' Square : A Journey into the World of the Suicide Bomber: A Journey into the World of the Suicide Bomber. Oxford University Press. p. 33. ISBN 978-0-19-802756-0. …a message reminiscent of the popular intifada slogan "Palestine is ours from the river to the sea," which in the hands of the Islamists became "Palestine is Islamic from the river to the sea."
  15. ^ David Cook (1 August 2008). Contemporary Muslim Apocalyptic Literature. Syracuse University Press. p. 138. ISBN 978-0-8156-3195-8. Jerusalem is Arab Muslim, and Palestine — all of it, from the river to the sea — is Arab Muslim, and there is no place in it for any who depart from peace or from Islam, other than those who submit to those standing under the rule of Islam