April 25, 2016
Doris Strub Epstein
FIRST ANNUAL COMMEMORATION OF ISRAEL’S LEGAL RIGHTS
Braving the cold and chill, Monday , April 25, in front of the Israeli Consulate on Bloor St., demonstrators rallied around a huge blue and white Israeli flag and a billboard that proclaimed in large print, Israel’s legal rights – enshrined in international law. They were celebrating the 96th anniversary of the San Remo conference where Jews were granted the legal rights to a national homeland in Palestine.
Renanah Gemeiner, who organized the rally with Canadians for Israel’s Legal Rights, intends to make it a yearly event. “Too few people know about this, including Israelis,” she said.
Co-founders of CILR, Goldi Steiner and the late Salomon Benzimra, met in Israel recently with Deputy Foreign Affairs Minister Tzipi Hotovely and Education Minister Naftali Bennett to discuss the issue of Israel’s legal rights. Tragically, Salomon, author of a book on the topic (‘The Jewish Peoples’ Rights To The Land of Israel‘), mentor of many nationally and internationally, and passionate Zionist, died suddenly on the return journey. It was his writing , The Legal Rights of the Jewish People to the Land of Israel, that was being handed out to passers -by.
On April 25, 1920 the League of Nations met at a conference in San Remo, Italy. Fifty one member countries, the entire League of Nations, unanimously proclaimed “the exclusive national Jewish rights to the Land of Israel under international law, on the strength of the historical connection of the Jewish people to the territory previously known as Palestine.” Jews had the legal right to settle anywhere in western Palestine, a 10,000 square mile area between the Jordan River and the Mediterranean Sea.
The key statement reads: “Recognition has thereby been given to the historical connection of the Jewish people with Palestine and to the grounds of reconstituting their national home in that country.” Key word -“reconstitute” not create.
“Jews are in the Land of Israel as of right and not on sufferance,” said Winston Churchhill.
At the same time, the League of Nations gave the political right to self determination to Arabs in Lebanon, Syria , Iraq and later, Trans Jordan.
“Arabs are making false claims that they are the indigenous people of Palestine,” Renanah said. “The Arab population was small until Jewish resettlement restored the barren lands. Huge numbers of Arabs flooded into Palestine illegally from over 20 countries and then used violence and the false claim of being the native people to encourage the world to betray their legal commitment to the Jewish people. Thus, millions of Jews were prevented from joining their brethren in Israel and were instead, murdered in the Holocaust.”
“All those who continue to demonize Israel are focusing on one issue, 90 % of the time,” writes Norwegian blogger Andreas Fagerbaake in CIJNews.com. “Their main argument is and always will be occupation, occupation, occupation and how Jews are ‘stealing Arab land and building illegal settlements.’ But pro Israel organizations do not confront this and instead focus on Israel innovation, how moral the IDF is , how cruel Israel’s enemies are, etc.”
“That is why pro Israel organizations need to change their priorities and have the courage to confront the lie that Jews are ‘occupying Judea and Samaria’, the heartland of the land of Israel. This is the core issue.”
Donna Holbrook, National Executive Director of the International Christian Embassy of Jerusalem in Canada was part of the group, handing out information. When asked why she was there, she answered, “It’s the right thing to do.”
Also commemorating the San Remo Resolution at a historic seder at UN headquarters in New York, were Tomas Sandell of the European Coalition for Israel and Israel’s Ambassador to the UN, Danny Danon. They sent greetings.