Monday, April 3, 2017

Columbia University's Barnard College Dean Gildersleeve: Supported Palestinian Rights In 20th Century--Part 8

In her 1954 autobiography, Many A Good Crusade: Memoirs of Virginia Crocheron Gildersleeve, the Dean of Barnard College of Columbia University between 1911 and 1947, Virginia Crocheron Gildersleeve, wrote the following: 

"...When the proposal for the partition of Palestine came before the General Assembly--the Ad Hoc Committee, with our approval, rejected the proposal that the International Court of Justice should be asked to rule upon the legal status of Palestine, and finally, by a majority of the nations actually voting, adopted the partition plan. But when this recommendation came before the Assembly, not merely a majority, but a two-thirds vote was needed. Then tremendous pressure was exerted because of Zionist influence, not only through the United States Government but by powerful private individuals and organizations. Five countries which had indicated their intention of voting against the partition were special targets,--Haiti, Liberia, the Philippines, Ethiopia, and Greece. All except Greece were either won to voting for the partition or persuaded to abstain. Thus the United States succeeded in forcing through the partition proposal.

"...Meanwhile, the Arabs and the Zionists were fighting in Palestine. That unhappy land was torn with violence, fear and cruelty. Outstanding among the horrors was the massacre of Dair Yaseen in early April [1948]. The whole population of that Arab village, women and children, the aged and infirm, as well as the able-bodied men, were massacred by the Zionist terrorists in cold blood. As the news of this slaughter spread through the country hundreds of thousands of other Arabs from villages and towns fled from their homes and possessions to save their lives, expecting of course, like all those who in the past have fled from floods, wars, and eruptions, to return to their houses and farms when the terror had passed.

"Since they have never been able to do so, reprisals from Arabs on Zionists and counter-reprisals from Zionists on Arabs followed Dair Yaseen, and the chain of tragedies continued until the destruction of the Arab village of Kibya by Israeli armed forces in 1953 redoubled the tension, which seems destined to continue indefinitely..."

(end of part 8)

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