July 21, 2019

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The most important document in Jordanian history: The surrender of the Jews in Jerusalem in 1948


Mohammed Younis Al -Abbadi writes in Ammon News about the upcoming centennial of the founding of Jordan (Transjordan) in 1921:

On the eve of the celebration of the centennial of the state that the Jordanians built with loyalty, work and blood, we need to highlight the documents of pride that accompanied this extended sacrifice and a fulfillment of the ideals we have secured. 

The entire article discusses only a single historic Jordanian document, apparently the most important document in Jordanian history:

The document of the surrender of the Haganah to the Arab Army, which recounts part of our army’s victories, is a document that dates back to the 1948 war.

The article says:

Upon the request of the Jews of Old Jerusalem to surrender, the first group (ie the Arab army ) presented the conditions, and the second group accepted them.”

The Arab army imposed five conditions on the Haganah gang in Jerusalem: surrendering weapons and handing them over, and taking all male combatants prisoner of war.

Elderly men, women and children and those with serious wounds can exit to  the Jewish neighborhoods of New Jerusalem via the Red Cross. The Arab Army pledged to protect the lives of all surrendering Jews.

The fifth point in the document stated: “The Arab army occupies the Jewish neighborhoods in Old Jerusalem.”

The conditions of the document, especially those relating to the humanitarian aspects, where the elderly men, women and children are allowed to leave via the Red Cross show us to have a high moral and humanitarian character.

Yes, so moral that they eagerly destroyed over 50 synagogues within a few weeks of the surrender.

Obviously this is only one person’s opinion, but the idea that the surrender of Jews who were cut off from the rest of Israel in 1948 represents the most important moment in Jordanian history betrays a bit of an obsession. Jordan’s victory over a few hundred Jews – which was reversed 19 years later – is considered, today, the perhaps biggest event in Jordanian history.

Palestinians have always defined themselves in terms of Israel. Apparently, some Jordanians do as well.

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