‘Place the Material in the Wells’: Docs Point to Israeli Army’s 1948 Biological Warfare by Ofer Aderet on Haaretz

PLEASE TAKE ACTION RIGHT NOW AND SEND YOUR LETTER TO THE UN OFFICE OF THE SPECIAL ADVISER ON THE PREVENTION OF GENOCIDE AND THE INTERNATIONAL CRIMINAL COURT PROSECUTOR.

On April 1, 1948, David Ben-Gurion wrote in his journal about “the development of science and speeding up its application in warfare.” A month and a half later, he wrote about “biological materials” that were purchased for $2,000. Only now, 74 years later, has a connection between these two entries come to light… Evidently, the excerpts from the diary of the man who would become Israel’s first prime minister are traces of his involvement in a secret operation to poison the drinking water of Arab communities.

… This operation was partially exposed decades ago when rumors and oral testimonies were reported in newspapers and books about an attempt in 1948 by the IDF to poison wells in Acre and Gaza by adding bacteria to the drinking water. However, only now, in Morris and Kedar’s research, has the “smoking gun” been revealed – in the form of official documentation. The newly unearthed documents show that this operation was much broader in scope than earlier believed and that other top military and political figures besides Ben-Gurion were involved.

…Ben-Gurion was at the top of the pyramid. Below him was Yadin, who oversaw the military side of the operation. The operation was commanded by Yohanan Ratner. Initially, the top man in the field for the group was Dayan, who went on to become the IDF chief of staff and defense minister. The documents indicate that Dayan served as the smuggler who conveyed the bacteria from the Science Corps to different points throughout the country. David Shaltiel, commander of the Etzioni Brigade in Jerusalem, was also involved in the operation. Intelligence officer Ezra Helmer (later Omer, head of the Haganah General Staff Intelligence Department) also joined at a later stage.

…On the scientific side, the production of the poison, were people from the IDF Science Corps Bet, a subunit in the Science Corps that dealt with biological warfare. It was headed by Alex Keinan, who went on to found the Israel Institute for Biological Research in Nes Tziona. The scientific work was overseen by the Katchalski (Katzir) brothers: biophysicist Ephraim Katzir, the first commander of the Science Corps and later an Israel Prize laureate and the fourth president of Israel; and his older brother, scientist Aharon Katzir of the Weizmann Institute… A series of assistants who went on to become professors in Israeli academia were also involved in the operation.

Continue reading at https://archive.fo/ZQiOQ#selection-259.0-259.87

Burying the Nakba: How Israel Systematically Hides Evidence of 1948 Expulsion of Arabs by Hagar Shezaf

Please TAKE ACTION RIGHT NOW and send your letter to the UN Office of the Special Adviser on the Prevention of Genocide and the International Criminal Court Prosecutor.

This is one of those rare cases when we archive an article that doesn’t state the word ‘genocide’ in relation to Israel, but the information in it illustrates acts that amount to genocide against the indigenous Palestinian people. It also features a policy of concealment and genocide denial.

Four years ago, historian Tamar Novick was jolted by a document she found in the file of Yosef Vashitz, from the Arab Department of the left-wing Mapam Party, in the Yad Yaari archive at Givat Haviva. The document, which seemed to describe events that took place during the 1948 war, began:
“Safsaf [former Palestinian village near Safed] – 52 men were caught, tied them to one another, dug a pit and shot them. 10 were still twitching. Women came, begged for mercy. Found bodies of 6 elderly men. There were 61 bodies. 3 cases of rape, one east of from Safed, girl of 14, 4 men shot and killed. From one they cut off his fingers with a knife to take the ring.”
The writer goes on to describe additional massacres, looting and abuse perpetrated by Israeli forces in Israel’s War of Independence. 

Continue reading at https://web.archive.org/web/20220511074244/https://www.haaretz.com/israel-news/.premium.MAGAZINE-how-israel-systematically-hides-evidence-of-1948-expulsion-of-arabs-1.7435103