Palestinian Refugee

The Palestinian Refugee Problem: Born Of War Or Design?

The Palestinian Refugee Problem: Born of War or Design?
{Department of War Studies, King’s College London}


Palestinian Refugee


This essay rejects the false dichotomy inherent in asking whether war or design engendered the Palestinian refugee problem. The realities of war, not over-arching expulsion policy, initially facilitated flight. However, the designation of uprooted Palestinians as refugees was ‘born’ by belated Zionist ‘design’. Though Zionist decision-makers expressed genuine initial shock at the ‘psychosis of flight[1]’, ethnic cleansing[2] incrementally became normative policy, whilst post-war Israeli strategy deliberately sought transformation of temporary departure into exile. Although attributing some (not all) culpability to Zionist praxis, I reject traditional ‘pro-Palestinian’ historiography which frames the birth of ‘refugeedom’ within a premeditated, Zionist dialectic process[3]. The ‘design’ factor was delayed and influenced by local milieu, not Zionist machination inherent in a ‘robber ideology[4]’. Resultantly, I argue the prominence of ‘retroactive design’ over ‘premeditated design’ in crystallising the ‘refugee problem’.

Further objective study tracing the origins of the exodus could promote the resolution of a contemporary issue; the ‘refugee question’ continues to exercise destabilising resonance in the Israel-Palestine conflict[5]. Irreconcilable interpretations of combat and exodus in 1947-1949 as ‘The Independence War’ or ‘al-Nakba’ (the catastrophe) underlie Israeli and Palestinian narratives[6]. Influenced by these national myths, traditional literature regarding the origins of the refugee problem sought to either wholly indict[7] or exonerate[8] Zionist policy. This binary deadlock was broken by Benny Morris’ The Birth of the Palestinian Refugee Problem, which convincingly contextualised the majority of flight as resulting from Zionist actions, mostly military hostilities rather than outright expulsion[9]. Morris, a revisionist Israeli ‘new historian[10]’, portrayed the exodus as a ‘multi-staged, multi-causal picture’, denying the existence of a ‘smoking gun’ to indicate an over-arching Zionist transfer plan[11]. This premise was lambasted by supporters of ‘premeditated design’, who reduce the conflict to ‘cover for…systematic expulsion[12]’; a convenient opportunity for a pre-approved Zionist ‘design’ of ethnic cleansing.

Hence, contemporary controversy converges around ‘the degree of Zionist premeditation[13]’ and the relationship between transfer policy and ‘Tochnit Dalet’ (Plan D), an infamous Israeli military order implemented in April 1948[14]. This essay reflects the shifting battlegrounds of historiography, scrutinising existing literature for the presence or extent of Zionist premeditation and/or ‘design’ in driving flight before, during and after the conflict of 1947-1949. Firstly, I examine causal correlations between pre-conflict Zionist notions of ‘transfer’ and the first phase of exodus, from November 1947-March 1948. Consequently, I assess the relationship between Plan D and increasing Zionist predisposition for expulsion. Finally, I examine post-conflict Israeli policy seeking to stymie a Palestinian return, concluding that both war and design were responsible for the multi-staged evolution of the refugee problem.

Transfer Thinking and the ‘First Wave’

In 1947, the vast majority of the 608,230 Jews who inhabited the British-ruled Mandate of Palestine held ideological aspirations for the creation of a local Jewish-majority state (Zionism)[15], causing tension with the 1,364,300 indigenous Palestinian Arabs[16].  Resultantly, United Nations (UN) Partition Resolution 181, adopted in November 1949, sought to divide Palestine into Jewish and Arab states following British departure[17]. Though accepted by the Yishuv, the pre-state Zionist collective entity, Arab leaders rejected partition[18], resulting in sustained conflict from November 1947-March 1949[19]. The Yishuv’s semi-official Haganah militia, later becoming the Israel Defence Forces (IDF), emerged victorious, acquiring 78% of Palestine, defeating a multinational Arab force which invaded during May 1948[20]. Throughout the conflict, approximately 700,000 Palestinians departed from their homes[21]. The exodus emerged in four stages over 20 months, ending in July 1949[22]. The vast majority of Palestinians fled during rounds of fighting, which were punctuated by three truce periods[23].

Supporters of ‘premeditated design’ rationalise this exodus as the brainchild of a pre-war, Zionist plot to ‘transfer’ Arabs out of Palestine. Pappe utilises Haganah ‘mapping’ of Palestinian villages from 1946 as evidence of premeditated ethnic cleansing[24], which he claims began in December 1947[25]. Finklestein suggests that expulsion of Palestinians was inherent in Zionist ideology, enacted ‘covertly’ before May 1948[26]. This outlook places the exodus on a dialectic that began with Zionist land purchases in the 1880s[27]. Pappe, Masalha and Finklestein suggest a causal correspondence between pre-war Zionist support for transfer and the birth of the refugee problem, inferring that premeditated ‘design’ is largely responsible for the phenomenon.

Indeed, Theodore Herzl, the ‘father’ of Zionism, pondered transferring Palestine’s Arabs elsewhere in the nineteenth century[28]. Transfer policy entered the Yishuv mainstream following the British-sponsored Peel Commission of 1937, which advised transfer-based partition as a long-term solution to unrest[29].  This notion was further solidified by the anti-Zionist underpinnings of the 1936-1939 Arab Revolt, which Yishuv leaders interpreted as signalling that reconciling Jewish statehood with a large Arab population was impossible[30]. Zionism, in seeking a Jewish-majority state in Arab-majority Palestine, probably necessitated some form of population transfer. However, territorially maximalist right-wing Zionist ‘dissidents’, the LHI and Irgun, rejected transfer, associating it with partition, whilst many members of the left-wing Mapam party ruled the notion inhumane[31]. Regardless, Zionist aspirations and local context resulted in some (not all) Yishuv policy-makers embracing transfer before 1947.

Nevertheless, predilection for transfer does not inherently translate into policy. The ideologically-tainted premeditation approach is founded upon the non sequitur claim that desire equals intent. Though Israel’s first Prime Minister, David Ben-Gurion, endorsed transfer in the 1930s[32], he also entertained far-fetched delusions of bombing Jordan and conquering Damascus[33]. This demonstrates the inherent flaws in selectively quoting from Ben-Gurion’s diary to demonstrate premeditated expulsion, as Pappe and Masalha frequently do.  Similarly, though Zionist forces mapped Palestinian villages, this policy was learned from the British Army[34], hardly die-hard Zionist conspirators. Hence, claiming that ‘village mapping’ constitutes pre-war, pro-expulsion ‘design’ borders on conspiracy theory.

Crucially, historical analysis of the first stage of conflict (November 1947-March 1948) finds scant evidence of ‘premeditated design’. This period saw 75,000 Palestinians depart, overwhelmingly from the affluent urban classes[35]. Haganah expulsion played an ‘almost insignificant[36]’ role; pre-war transfer thinking failed to evolve into policy at this stage. Historical parallels can be drawn with the voluntary departure of 25-40,000 prosperous Palestinians during the Arab Revolt[37]; like 1936, these socially mobile Palestinians intended to return when hostilities subsided[38]. Thus, Palestinian flight began in the milieu of unremarkable emulation of previous trends, not pre-conflict design.

The majority of the Palestinian leadership, the Arab Higher Committee, left Palestine during this ‘first wave’[39] of flight. The disparate, non-cohesive nature of Palestinian society made it susceptible to departure[40], a dangerous precedent following the breakdown of public services and the economy due to the emigration of senior administrative officials[41]. The elite-centric ‘first wave’ of departure dampened Palestinian morale, promoting a flight paradigm which ordinary Palestinians later emulated[42]. This exodus was spurred by a reciprocal, localised ‘spiral of violence’; most departing Palestinians lived near Jewish settlements and feared harassment by right-wing ‘dissidents’[43]. Thus, the phenomenon of flight was ‘born’ in a milieu of non-compulsory exodus, mired in uncertainty and suspicion of right-wing Zionist groups who were equivocal on the pre-war transfer question.

Compared to the rightists, the Haganah embraced transfer, though scant manifestation of this pre-war thinking existed in Yishuv strategy, ‘covert’ or otherwise, during the ‘first wave’; the Haganah was committed to defensive restraint[44]. Yishuv leaders sought to avoid radicalising hitherto apathetic Arab peasants, consequently rejecting an offensive strategy and/or holistic expulsion policy[45]. From November-March, only two villages were expelled[46]. Considering the pre-war salience of transfer amongst the Yishuv elite, what is remarkable is not the existence of a premeditated expulsion policy, but the lack of it. The Histadrut (the Yishuv’s powerful trade union confederation) even attempted to stem flight, producing an Arabic-language leaflet in January 1948, claiming: ‘The Arab worker, clerk and peasant in the Jewish state will be citizens with equal rights[47]’.

Thus, the Yishuv entered the war without a premeditated transfer strategy.  Disparate positions within the Zionist polity regarding transfer dispel the myth of a monolithic expulsion plot, whilst the synchronisation of the birth of the exodus with defensive Haganah strategy refutes ‘premeditated design’. The Haganah’s continued passivity is striking, particularly because the Yishuv seemed to be losing the war. In the first six months of battle, Palestinian irregulars killed over 1000 Jews[48], destroying five convoys in one week during the ‘Battle of the Roads’- a struggle for the strategically vital transport networks connecting disparate Jewish settlements[49].  These attacks were so successful that the United States abandoned support of partition, deeming it unviable[50]. In response, the Haganah engineered a strategic paradigm shift, creating the now-controversial Plan D.

Plan D and the Emergence of Ethnic Cleansing

The implementation of Plan D from April 2nd, 1948[51], closely corresponds with the ‘second wave’ of exodus (April-June 1948). Approximately 200-300,000 Arabs left Palestine[52], transforming flight from an elite affair into a fully-fledged depopulation of Arab villages. Seeking to construct a correlation, some scholars have described Plan D ‘a comprehensive ethnic cleansing operation[53]’…‘a carefully prepared plan… remove as many Palestinians as possible[54]’. Pro-Palestinian historiographers utilise Plan D as evidence for the influence of premeditated, top-down Zionist ‘design’ in creating the exodus.

Yet Plan D was a military, non-political blueprint responding to Palestinian successes in the ‘War of the Roads[55]’, seeking to consolidate areas allotted to Israel by Resolution 181 and secure land-passage to Jewish settlements outside this territory[56]. The text promotes an offensive Haganah strategy, providing guidelines for capturing Palestinian villages[57], but only permits expulsion ‘in the event of resistance[58]’.  Nowhere does Plan D advocate urban de-population or promote normative ethnic cleansing[59]. By contrast, Plan D provided detailed guidelines for garrisoning non-hostile villages[60]. Whilst Plan D was later misused as a ‘carte blanche’ for expelling Arab villages[61], scholars conflate the contents of Plan D with the intent of over-enthusiastic Haganah commanders. Rather than serve as evidence of an over-arching expulsion order, Plan D was abused, rather than implemented. The document is relatively benign when compared to Zionist military action in this period.

This is encapsulated by the murder of approximately 200 Palestinian villagers from Deir Yassin on April 9th, 1948 by right-wing Zionist militias[62].  News of the massacre constituted the ‘direct reason’ for the flight of 27,000 and 85,000 Arabs from Haifa and Jaffa in April and May[63]. Hence, the actions of Zionist irregulars, who were not bound by Plan D, perpetuated a ‘domino effect’ of ‘second wave’ flight. Massacres were never sanctioned[64]; spontaneous, localised, war-born brutality initially took precedence over top-down ‘design’ in facilitating flight.  Whilst 200 villages were evacuated from 1st April to 15th May[65], few of these resulted from expulsion orders; Arab villagers fled at ‘the first whiff of grapeshot[66]’. Though Zionist leaders in Haifa pleaded with Arabs to remain, local Palestinian notables ordered the city’s evacuation[67]. This colossal error inadvertently precipitated the entry of ‘design’ into the myriad of factors driving the exodus.

Shock at the scope of flight was widespread and genuine amongst Zionist leaders, suggesting lack of premeditation. Yishuv Foreign Minister Moshe Shertok, described the departures as ‘most surprising’, but praised them as a ‘momentous event in….Jewish history[68]’. The Haifa exodus heralded the emergence of Haganah-implemented ‘systematic’ expulsion orders[69]; unprecedented Arab flight spawned the re-emergence of an ‘atmosphere of transfer’ amongst the Zionist elite[70]. Haganah commanders were given ‘post facto…cover for their actions’ by Plan D[71].   While it did not constitute a premeditated expulsion template, normative pre-war transfer proclivity meshed with widespread abuse of Plan D, precipitating the belated rise of ‘design’ in promoting Arab departure. This ideological re-alignment set dangerous precedents for subsequent waves of exodus, radicalising Zionist strategists.

The ‘third wave’ began shortly after the May 15th pan-Arab invasion of Palestine[72]. The internationalisation of the conflict raised the stakes, consolidating hard-line policies amongst Zionist leaders[73]. Creeping traces of ‘design’ became evident; Arabs were less likely to flee, whereas Zionist forces demonstrated a hitherto unseen preference for expulsion[74]. The ‘ten days’ of conflict which bisect the first and second truces saw 100,000 Palestinians flee[75].  Ben-Gurion himself endorsed the conquest of the towns of Lydda and Ramle and the expulsion of their 50,000 residents[76]. For the first time, most departures were compulsory, heralded by explicit IDF expulsion orders and actions[77]. Regardless of evidence to the contrary, villages were deemed hostile and expelled[78], demonstrating widespread abuse of Plan D’s guidelines, rather than its implementation.

The punctuation of short periods of conflict with unprecedented flight demonstrates an Israeli shift towards expulsion policy which is also evident in the ‘fourth wave’ of exodus (October-November 1948[79]). Unlike the tailored expulsions of Plan D, guidelines for the Negev-based Operation Yoav contained explicit, holistic Arab de-population orders[80], leading to the uprooting of 200,000 Palestinians[81]. Yoav’s commander, Yigal Allon, was puritanical in his implementation of expulsion orders; ‘no, or almost no, Arab communities’ remained in his wake[82]. By contrast, Galilee-based Operation Hiram was accompanied by a general expulsion order, but nearly 40% of the local Arab population remained in-situ[83]. While ‘design’ became more prevalent in Israeli policy, it was closely related to strategic needs[84]. Substantial emphasis in the fourth wave was devoted to destroying Arab ‘islands in Jewish population areas’, whereas the northern Galilee lacked substantial Jewish settlement[85]. Resultantly, the impact of ‘design’ in promoting flight was influenced by pragmatic necessity: the brevity of ethnic cleansing reflected local milieu.

Believing local Arabs would not easily depart Jordanian-held East Palestine (later the West Bank), Ben-Gurion refused to permit IDF military operations there[86]. Having captured Nazareth in July, Israeli decision-makers vetoed local eviction orders, fearing international repercussions due to the town’s importance to Christians[87]. Additionally, the villages of Abu-Ghosh, Fueidis and Jisr-az-Zarka were not expelled after pleas from local Zionist groups, due to the non-belligerent nature of these Arab areas[88]. Commanders affiliated to Mapam were less vigorous in expulsions when compared to others; Mapam pressure also resulted in Ben-Gurion’s half-hearted order prohibiting unauthorised expulsions on July 6th, 1948[89]. Thus, the emergence of ‘design’ did not constitute a premeditated, universally-held Zionist goal. Instead, ‘design’ varied according to location and was enacted with fluctuating enthusiasm.

However, ‘design’ was increasingly responsible for the exodus of approximately 300,000 Palestinians after July, crystallising mid-‘second wave’.  Yet framing Plan D as a ‘master plan for the conquest of Palestine[90]’ is unsubstantiated. Zionist ‘design’ did not manifest itself fully during the plan’s initial implementation and departure-inducing actions frequently abused or ignored Plan D. Despite this, the third and fourth waves of exodus demonstrate the fallacy in asking whether war or design were responsible for the refugee problem; the two were not mutually exclusive. The protean ‘war’ and ‘design’ factors which promoted flight enjoyed a complex interplay with a plurality of variables, including Arab decisions such as the Haifa exodus, and did not constitute an independent Zionist dialectic process unrelated to unfolding events. Instead, the exodus ‘gave birth’ to incrementally prominent Zionist dispositions to encourage flight. This belated emergence of proactive, forceful ‘design’ led to the manifestation of ‘retroactive design’ as conflict subsided.

Exiles into Refugees: Post-War Retroactive Transfer

During the final months of conflict and following the cessation of hostilities, Israel adopted a dual-track approach to cement the changed demographics of Palestine. The newborn state created physical realities that blocked Palestinian return[91], simultaneously applying diplomatic pressure to transform 700,000 exiles into refugees[92]. This represents the most critical phase in the role of ‘design’ in creating the refugee problem; many of these acts took place in a non-combat, non-emergency setting. Supporters of ‘premeditated design’ dedicate unwarranted attention to wartime Zionist policy such as Plan D, whilst devoting cursory study to the crucial, overt post-conflict impact of ‘design’.

The Israeli cabinet decision of 16th June 1948 officially barred return of refugees[93]. Though no cabinet-approved holistic expulsion orders were given during conflict, this decision constituted clear, ‘retroactive design’. Suddenly, hitherto exiles became de-facto refugees; most saw departure as temporary, but were now doomed to live outside their birthplaces. Ben-Gurion instituted a ‘transfer committee[94]’, which explicitly advocated ‘retroactive transfer[95]’. This was enforced by a series of politically-motivated measures: From mid-May, Zionist forces stopped Palestinians from returning home with live fire[96], whilst June 1948 witnessed two million Dunams of land transferred from Arab ownership into Jewish hands[97].

Reactive exploitation of wartime exodus coalesced with proactive creation of new physical realities that would prevent reversion to pre-war demographics. In August, 1948, the government formalised a policy of destroying exiled Palestinians’ vacant villages[98]. Zionist forces caused little physical damage during combat; the demolitions that rendered 400 villages uninhabitable were mostly politically-constituted ‘acts of sabotage[99]’. UN mediator Folke Bernadotte noted destruction of refugees’ homes lacked ‘any apparent military necessity[100]’. Further transfer operations, legitimised as ‘border clearing’, resulted in the deliberate expulsion of 30-40,000 Arabs from 1948-1950[101].  The UN Agency for Palestinian Refugees defines a ‘Palestinian refugee’ as ‘people…who lost their homes and livelihood as a result of the 1948 Arab/Israel conflict[102]’.  According to this criterion, most uprooted Palestinians did not become ‘refugees’ before the cabinet vote, deliberate village demolitions and land confiscations enacted in peacetime. Thus, post-war ‘design’ turned the Palestinian exodus into a refugee problem.

Whilst retroactive transfer constituted a pivotal goal of Israeli decision-makers, the Arab states also bear responsibility for cementing Palestinian exile. Following the December 1948 adoption of UN Resolution 194 which called for the return of refugees[103], Israel was under considerable external pressure to permit limited return. Simultaneously facing internal pro-return Mapam lobbying, Israel relented into accepting 100,000 refugees[104]. Arab governments immediately rejected this gesture[105], strengthening cabinet hardliners[106]. Refugees were left ‘in limbo’ between an Israeli government that would not accept them and Arab governments that refused to absorb them[107]. Consequently, the ‘refugee issue’ became a ‘refugee problem’ that would resonate for decades.

Arab intolerance indirectly aided retroactive transfer; over several years, 800,000 Jewish refugees of Middle-Eastern origin immigrated to Israel, following anti-Semitic Arab persecution[108]. This permitted Ben-Gurion to airbrush Israeli ethnic cleansing, portraying these exoduses as a ‘mutual population transfer[109]’. Conversely, Israel could legitimately claim that it was logistically impossible to rehabilitate nearly two million Jewish and Palestinian refugees simultaneously. Pragmatic considerations such as a housing shortage coalesced with retroactive design; November 1947-August 1949 saw 135 new settlements established, mainly on the land of exiled Arabs[110]. Coupled with demolitions, this ensured Palestinian refugees had ‘nowhere, and nothing, to return to[111]’.

Though Israeli retroactive design created the ‘refugee problem’ by legitimising and consolidating war-time exodus, the intertwining of normative goals with external events continued to resonate. Whilst Marquesee claimed ‘Zionists used the war to alter the demographic facts on the ground[112]’ and this is somewhat true, it would be more prudent to focus on post-conflict Zionist ‘design’ that cemented demographic realities brought about during wartime. Morris admits that, because of the decisions of the post-war Israeli cabinet, one can legitimately claim that all 700,000 Palestinians were expelled[113]. Therefore, the post-conflict, blatantly calculated ‘design’ instituted by Israeli officials was the final act that gave ‘birth’ to a problem that was spawned in a milieu of war.


‘War and not design…gave birth to the Palestinian refugee problem[114]’.

When compared to his declaration that Palestinian ‘refugeedom’ was deliberately engineered by post-conflict Israel, the above quote by Benny Morris is baffling. Morris rightly notes that ‘the century-old conflict…could not be properly understood in black-and-white terms[115]’, yet he makes exactly this mistake in presenting a misleading bifurcation, which is also enforced by this question. The exodus did not become a ‘refugee problem’ until Israel took deliberate, post-war actions designed to ensure demographic homogeneity. Similarly, ‘retroactive transfer’ would have been meaningless without prior, unprecedented flight born of wartime uncertainty and brutality. Hence, the ‘Palestinian refugee problem’ was not engendered by a single event, of either war or design. Instead, it was ‘born’ of a multi-causal cocktail of both war and design, which were respectively influenced by a plethora of external and localised pressures, some calculated, some spontaneous.

Although suggesting war was solely responsible for the emergence of the refugee problem excessively exonerates Zionist policy-makers, the ‘pro-Palestinian’ approach of airbrushing external non-normative factors represents an ideologically-tainted, reductionist position. Though proactive and retroactive ethnic cleansing took place, this was incremental and enacted after the exodus began in its own right. Even by the end of the war, underlying causes of flight remained multi-faceted and expulsion policy enacted with subjective vigour as Zionist support for ethnic cleansing was never monolithic. Israel’s existing large Arab minority demonstrates a lack of over-arching, systemic expulsion policy[116]. There exists scant evidence to suggest that the Yishuv entered the war with a premeditated Zionist ‘master plan’ of expulsion. Pre-war Zionist acceptance of transfer had a subtler, but equally important role in creating the refugee problem than traditional ‘pro-Palestinian’ historiography permits. Military superiority and unprecedented Palestinian flight permitted the retroactive realisation of this pre-packaged, legitimised ideal, particularly as hostilities waned.

The debate regarding culpability for the Palestinian refugee problem continues to this day. While Israel declassified expulsion orders, the reports detailing why and how these orders were made remain closed and Arab archives are wholly inaccessible[117]. This must change to permit the fermentation of objective truth. The ‘Palestinian refugee problem’ is far more than an academic debate; it is a living, breathing issue. The narratives of both sides feed contemporary claims, given oxygen by flawed ‘academic’ studies which are unduly influenced by ideological predispositions. Israel cannot truthfully deny involvement in creating the refugee problem, whilst Arab states are equally unjust in placing all blame and hence all onus to resolve it on the Jewish state. In order to resolve the Palestinian refugee problem once and for all, both parties must bury their national myths.

[toggle title=”Citations & Bibliography”]

[1] Morris (1999), p255.

[2] I define ethnic cleansing as: ‘expulsion of….population from territory due to religious or ethnic discrimination, political, strategic or ideological considerations, or a combination of these’; see Bell-Fialkoff (1993).

[3] See Pappe (2006a).

[4] See Masalha (1991).

[5] Dershowitz (2003), p85.

[6] Glazer (1980), p96.

[7] See Beinin (2004).

[8] See Herzog (1984).

[9] Flapan (1984), p8.

[10] Khalidi (2010), p14.

[11] Morris (1991), p104.

[12] Dershowitz (2003), p78.

[13] Morris (2010), p.39

[14] Flapan (1984), p9.

[15] Pappe (2006a), p10.

[16] Bregman (2000), p5.

[17] Israel Ministry of Foreign Affairs (2012).

[18] Tal (2005), p7.

[19] Bregman (2000), p5.

[20] Shlaim (2001), p34.

[21] Marquesee (2008).

[22] Morris (2004a), p6.

[23] Shlaim (2001), p34.

[24] Pappe (2006b), p13.

[25] Pappe (2006a), p40.

[26] Morris (1991), p99.

[27] Massad (2008).

[28] Morris (2004a), p41.

[29] Ibid, p46.

[30] Morris (2004a), p45.

[31] Ibid, p48.

[32] Flapan (1984), p16.

[33] Kapeliouk (1987), p19.

[34] Frantzman (2006).

[35] Morris (1991), p100.

[36] Morris (2004a), p139.

[37] Ibid, p133.

[38] Ibid.

[39] Shindler (2008), p44.

[40] Morris (1999), p253.

[41] Ibid, p255.

[42] Karsh (2002), p89.

[43] Morris (2004a), p138.

[44] Shlaim (2001), p31.

[45] Morris (1991), p106.

[46] Morris (2004a), p76.

[47] Ibid, p70.

[48] Frantzman (2006).

[49] Tal (2005), p6.

[50] Bregman (2000), p18.

[51] Morris (2004a), p165.

[52] Morris (1999), p256.

[53] Khoury (2008).

[54] Palestine Solidarity Campaign (2009).

[55] Shlaim (2001), p31.

[56] Ibid.

[57] Tochnit Dalet (1947).

[58] Ibid.

[59] Ibid.

[60] Ibid.

[61] Bregman (2000),  p20.

[62] Flapan (1984), p10.

[63] Ibid.

[64] Morris (2010), p.55.

[65] Pappe (2006a), p104.

[66] Morris (1999), p255.

[67] Karsh (2010),  p123.

[68] Morris (1995), p57.

[69] Morris (2004a), p166.

[70] Ibid.

[71] Ibid, p165.

[72] Israel Ministry of Foreign Affairs (2003).

[73] Morris (1991), p104.

[74] Morris (1999), p257.

[75] Ibid.

[76] Kapeliouk (1987), p21.

[77] Morris (1999), p257.

[78] Morris (2004a), p164.

[79] Morris (1991), p101.

[80] Morris (1999), p257.

[81] Morris (1991), p104.

[82] Ibid.

[83] Ibid.

[84] Karsh (2002), p89.

[85] Flapan (1984), p13.

[86] Shlaim (2001), p38.

[87] Flapan (1984), p14.

[88] Morris (2004a), p597.

[89] Morris (1991), p106.

[90] Khalidi (1988).

[91] Pappe (2006a), p188.

[92] Morris (2004a), p334.

[93] Morris (1995), p56.

[94] Flapan (1984), p16.

[95] Morris (2004a), p313.

[96] Morris (1999), p256.

[97] Pappe (2006a), p147.

[98] Quigley (2005), p84.

[99] Morris (2004a), p342.

[100] Quigley (2005), p84.

[101] Morris (2004a), p536.

[102] United Nations Relief and Works Agency.

[103] Israel Ministry of Foreign Affairs (2001).

[104] Shlaim (2001), p59.

[105] Israel Ministry of Foreign Affairs (2001).

[106] Bregman (2000), p40.

[107] Shindler (2008), p51.

[108] Dershowitz (2003), p88.

[109] Morris (2004a), p318.

[110] Ibid, p369.

[111] Ibid, p341.

[112] Marquesee (2008).

[113] Morris (2004a), p589.

[114] Ibid, p588.

[115] Morris, Benny (2004b).

[116] Morris (2004a), p588.

[117] Morris (2010), p49.


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One thought on “The Palestinian Refugee Problem: Born Of War Or Design?”

  1. Dear Historian, you should keep studying history before you fix you’re mind on the Arab Israeli conflict. Few link to here and there doesn’t make you concept more valid.Most of the Arab refugees escaped by the call of their Pan Arab leaders and their local leaders to keep the battle area free for the invading Arab armies, and they were promised to return back to their homed in “tow weeks”, the time it will take the Arabs to wipe new born Israel into the sea. But Israel surprised everyone and won the war. . .  Plan D had never been fully executed. The plan was to clean the upper Eastern side of the Galilee from branched of Bedouin and Syrian invaders that took hold of the villages that Arab inghabitants evacuated weeks before. The plan was a war between the IDF and mix of Syrian soldiers and semi military Arab gangs. 

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