Anorak | Israel And Palestine 1920-1948: The Story In 100 Photos

Israel And Palestine 1920-1948: The Story In 100 Photos

by | 31st, December 2013

WHAT Did Palestine look like before 14 May 1948, when the State of Israel declared Independence? We’ve raided the archives. All captions are the originals. They tell their own story:

Professor Albert Einstein and his wife Elsa arrive from Palestine to raise funds for Zionism, April 4, 1921.

General Allenby (British) enters the captured City of Jerusalem, Palestine, Dec. 9, 1917. He entered on foot thru the Gate of David. Jewish refugees, arriving on April 14, 1920 in Haifa, Palestine, aboard the Theodore Herzl. Some are carrying on their shoulders the bodies, in white shrouds, of two of their compatriots, who they say were slain when the Theodore Herzl was boarded by British personnel after unsuccessfully attempting to run the British Blockade.

1920 women

Palestinian women drink coffee – Palestine between 1900-1920


Some 10,000 of the 48,000 Palestine Arab Refugees who have settled in and around Damascus, Syria, staged a demonstration in Damascus, last week in April 1929 to express their gratitude to the Syrian Army for the recent Syria-Israel border clashes. They asked to be accepted as volunteers for the Syrian fighting forces so that they night fight back at Israel, upon which country they blame their present unhappy condition as refugees. Photo shows: An elderly lady addresses a great crowd of Palestine Arabs in the court-yard of the Army General Headquarters in Damascus. Her speech was among others heard there by Syrian Officers. On Mount Gerizim, outside Nablus, in central Palestine, there is an ancient Jewish sect known as the Samaritans, which claim to have lived in the Holy Land continuously since the time of Moses. At Passover they conduct the ancient sacrifice of a lamb upon an altar. Aaron, the high priest of the Samaritans with some of their laws, inscribed on ancient scrolls in the Aramaic text shown May 16, 1930. The tired groups shown above on the ship King Carol were a part of 318 homeless Jews barred from entering Palestine by the Quota system restricting immigration on Dec. 5, 1934. For two months they wandered vainly seeking a country where they would be permitted to land. Finally the polish government consented to receive them and they were landed at Constanza, Roumania and transported to Poland by train. The second battalion of the Dorsetshire regiment was moved into the holy land to reinforce those quelling Arab-Jew riots. The troops are shown being piped into Jerusalem by the band of the Second Battalion on June 22, 1936. The queen’s own Cameron Highlanders A train of donkeys crosses the Allenby Bridge, over the River Jordan on July 3, 1936, from Jordan into Palestine. In order to destroy the strongholds and hiding places of anti-Jewish Arab rioters in this city British troops were detailed off to blow up the older portions of the city with dynamite. Other troops were posted throughout the town to deal with hostile Arab demonstrations from those who had been evicted. The demolition also cleared the way for the building of new roads. A general view of the older part of Jaffa, Israel on July 3, 1936 after buildings had been blown up with dynamite. (AP Photo) Due to the continued hostilities of the arabs in Palestine, Jewish police are being trained by British officers and given military training. A Jewish police corporal, right, training Jewish police recruits, under ther eye of a British officer, left, on July 30, 1936. (AP Photo) The troopship Dorsetshire, with members of the Royal Northumberland Fusiliers, Royal Irish Fusiliers and Royal Engineers regiments on noard, sails from Southampton, England, on Sept. 12, 1936, enroute to Palestine, where the troops will reinforce the existing force out there. The British military authorities in Palestine have virtually taken over the railways, and there are unmistakable signs of military control along the line from here to Tel Aviv, Sept. 22, 1936. Special arrangements have been made to guard the line for fear of sabotage. The leader of the aran revolys in Palestine Fawzi Bey Al Qavoukchi, on Sept. 28, 1936. The royal commission to investigate conditions in Palestine started work at the reception held at the government house in Jerusalem, Israel on Nov. 12, 1936. Lord Peel, chairman of the royal commission, reading his opening speech. Sir Arthur Wauchope, high commissioner for Palestine is seen on left in armchair. The members of the commission are left to right: Sir Morris Carter, Sir Horace Rumbold, Vice-Chairman, Lord Peel, Sir Laurie Hammond, Sir Harold Morris, and Mr. Reginald. Funds are being raised in Nablus to rebuild the structures demolished by British troops during the Arab “Reign of terror”. The ruins of a building in Nablus which the British Blew up because it was used by Arab snipers on Jan. 12, 1937. The Mufti of Jerusalem appeared before the Royal Palestine commission on January 12 as the first spokesman for the Arab Case. For two months the Arab higher committee, headed by the Mufti, declined to co-operate with the commission. The decision to testify came after the Arab sovereigns of Iraq and Saudi Arabia and appeared to the committee to appear before the commission. The Mufti (left) leaving the offices of the commission after his testimony on Jan. 12, 1937. Rabbi Isaac Hertzog of Dublin arrived in Haifa, Palestine, Israel on Jan. 15, 1937, to take up his duties as Chief Rabbi of Palestine. He succeeds Chief Rabbi Kook, who died 16 months ago. Malcolm MacDonald, son of Prime Minister Ramsay MacDonald and Secretary of State for Dominion Affairs from 1935 - 1938. MacDonald later became Secretary of State for the Colonies. In 1939 MacDonald oversaw and introduced the so-called MacDonald White Paper, which aimed at the creation of a unified state, with controls on Jewish immigration Sir Charles Tegart, the man who suppressed terrorism in Bengal and who earned the title “Man of Iron,” is going to Palestine to advise the government on police organization there. Mr. Ormsby-Gore, colonial secretary, who made the announcement, said that the immediate and primary duty of the government and Palestine administration is to take vigounous measures to combat terrorism. Sir Charles Tegart in London on Oct. 22, 1937 after the announcement of his visit to Palestine. ( The gateway from Syria into Palestine, Jerusalem in 1938. Owing to the secret entry of thousands of Arab Rebels from Syria and the Lebanon into the Holy land, strict watch must be kept by the French and British police at the frontier. British troops, reinforced by new arrival’s are concentrating on the Galilee area north Palestine, in the General hunt for Arab rebels on Jan. 11, 1938. New rubber tired British 3.75 howitzers bombarding rebels in the Galilee (north Palestine) area. With a rifle at hand to stave off further attacks, this group of Jewish colonists, aided by Arab villagers, String barded wire in the 50 mile, tegarts wall, on the Palestine-Syria border on July 20, 1938 after bands of Marauding Arabs damaged the fence and engaged police in rifle fire. Arab bands and colonists have engaged with fatal result in clashes throughout July. The lighter basin, with two big goods sheds in the background, at Tel Aviv, which took its place alongside the great port cities of the world when the high commissioner for Palestine, Sir Arthur Grenfell Wauchope, declared the “baby” port open for passenger traffic, during the ceremony, much of which had to be curtailed owing to heavy rain, a crowd with hoisted umbrellas can be seen in rear of the picture on Feb. 23, 1938. Volunterr Jewish soldiers who prevent interference with the American-Jewish colonies in Palestine, Israel on August 23, 1938. They are being called upon a lot during the present Palestine Troubles.


Modern American style of office building and skyscrapers apartment houses, finely paved wide streets and smart shops show the remarkable growth of New Jerusalem on Oct. 23, 1938. Under the leadership of American Jews, who have converted the holy city from a mere medieval village to a live progressive and prosperous city of the first class, the Arabs have profited very largely from the phenomenal growth of Jerusalem by the profitable sale of the land on which most of these buildings are constructed. (AP Photo) Police post built under a Muslim mosque to prevent Arab sniping in Israel on Nov. 4, 1938. (AP Photo)


American Jewish colonists in Palestine completing the so called Tegart fence on August 23, 1938, which cost 500,000 dollars to build. It is 75 kilometres long, on the Palestine-Syria border, was suggested by Sir Charles Tegart, part of the British scheme to stamp out the Palestine disorders. Tent colony of American-Jewish settlers near Jerusalem, Palestine, Israel on August 23, 1938. It is under constant guard during present troubles. Field Marshal Hermann Goering makes his dramatic speech at Nuremberg, Germany on Sept. 10, 1938. In a violent two-hour polemic at Nuremberg, Field Marshal Goering attacked the Czech government, boasted Germany’s vast food stores were sufficient to defy any blockade, that her western fortifications were impregnable and that her air force was the strongest in the world. He also criticized England, pointed to the unrest in Palestine. Following Chancellor Adolf Hitler’s long awaited address at the Nuremberg Nazi Congress closing session on September 12, in which he said he would not tolerate a new Palestine in Europe, demanded autonomy for the Sudeten Germans, referred to Gigantic Fortifications on the German western frontier, were followed on September 13 in London, England, with discussions at number 10 Downing Street between Premier Neville Chamberlain and ministers of his Majesty’s government. One of the visitors was leader of the opposition Mr. C.R. Attlee. Leader of the opposition Mr. C.R. Attlee arriving at No. 10 Downing Street, London, England on Sept. 13, 1938. Neville Chamberlain latest developments in the Czech situation Funeral for British army victim of the Arab revolt in Palestine, who was buried with full military honors by his comrades, at Ramla, near Jerusalem, Sept. 9, 1938. War trucks filled with fully armed British soldiers are shown on the road to ancient Hebron, city of the holy land, Israel on Sept. 5, 1938, where radial religious strife threatened to destroy the Biblical town. The town was sacked by Rebel Arabs, the driver of a British tank was slain and buildings were burned in the cut break which brought these motor lorries dashing to the terror torn city. An Arab stands beside a section of ìTegartís Iron wallî in Israel in 1938, erected by Sir Charles Tegart to keep marauding Arabs out of Palestine. The fence, three strains of barbed wire on angular iron supports. Stretches for 60 miles on the Syria-Lebanon borders and cost $ 500,000. This time suppression of the Arab rebellion in Palestine is the British soldier’s lot. After months of terrorism, loss of lives in the hundreds and loss of trade in the millions, Britain apparently is determined to halt the terror and is dispatching thousands of additional troops. Photo shows Tommies after disembarking from a transport at Haifa on Oct. 11, 1938, when they were to be assigned to the duties in Jerusalem and other disturbed points. British troops in action in Palestine, Israel on Oct. 19, 1938, during the reconquest of old Jerusalem from great rebel. British troops in action in Palestine, Israel on Oct. 19, 1938, during the reconquest of old Jerusalem from great rebel. Since the British occupation of Jerusalem, Palestine, after the old city had been held for four days by Arabs, a measure of calm has descended on the district. Storm centre October 24óWhen this picture reached London by air after being was Jaffa, where there was sniping. British police captain leading Jewish kiddies to safety away from Arab snipers during the reoccupation of the old city of Jerusalem in Palestine, Israel on Oct. 24, 1938, by the British. The authorities are still making a determined bid to wipe out bands of rebels who are terrorizing Palestine. Volunteer “terror squad” of police-helpers, armed with rifles, scouring the mountains of Samaria, central Palestine, in pursuit of rebels on Oct. 24, 1938. British machine guns and sandbag barricades are set up in the courtyard of the Church of the Nativity in Bethlehem, Palestine, Oct. 26, 1938. British soldiers resting at the Damascus Gate in the Holy City November 1938.

British army in Palestine

Fakhri Nashashibi; Member of Arab National Defence Committee is challenging the leadership of the ex-mufti of Jerusalem, Haj Amin Effendi Al Husseini, in exile in Syria. Nashashibi, who comes from one of the most distinguished Arab families in Palestine, says the ex-mufti is no prophet but a self-seeking politician, who is running Palestine by his campaign of terror. Fakhri Nashashibi stands between two of his chief supporters (tribal heads from the Hebron District) in Jerusalem on Nov. 24, 1938. The British Army, strengthened by newly arrived reinforcements from England, Malta, India, and Egypt are conducting an intensive drive against Arab Rebels in historic Galilee, Northern, Palestine. British riflemen in action against Arab rebels at a mountain outpost in Israel on Nov. 10, 1938. Among the stars of stage, screen and radio who appeared in New York's Madison Square Garden in a benefit performance for the relief of persecuted European Jews who wish to settle in Palestine, were Eddie Cantor, left, George Jessel, in blackface makeup, Nov. 17, 1938. They are joined by New York Yankees "Ironman" Lou Gehrig, who scratches his head. British soldiers in steel helmets after they recaptured the Old City of Jerusalem at the Damascus Gate, November 1938. The British army dynamites Arab stone houses in northern Palestine in reprisal for rebel activities, Jan. 9, 1939. Latest British artillery with rubber-tired wheels, in action against Arab rebels in Palestine, Jan. 9, 1939. Latest British artillery with rubber-tired wheels, in action against Arab rebels in Palestine, Jan. 9, 1939. The Arabian delegates to the forthcoming round table conference in London on the Palestine question were entertainmed by the Egyptian government to a banquet in Cairo before leaving for London to attend the conference. The delegates left Cairo on January 23, after an announcement by Ragheb Nashashibi Bey, the leader of the moderate Palestine defense party that his party would not join the delegation owing to that fact that they had been selected to attend the conference without the party approval. The President of the Egyptian Council, Mohamed Mahmoud the heir apparent of Yemen, before the banquet given to the Arabian delegates to the round table conference in Cairo, Egypt on Jan. 18. 1939 “Save our children and our parents!” say these Jewish placards carried by men in the streets of Jerusalem, Israel on Jan. 16, 1939. “Open the gates of Palestine to the times of Nazi prevention hatred at the Christmas period we are crying from the holy city of Jew Salem to all Christian nations to help us against “Germany”. Palestine has been the scene of much death and destruction during the past two years, consequent on the conflict between Arab and Jew, and Jerusalem the holy has not escaped from scenes of violence. The famous Damascus gate of Jerusalem, scene of many incidents that have affected the history of Jerusalem and Palestine in an undated photo. This leads from the new city to the old quarter and is regarded by both factions as of strategic importance. Rabbi Dr. Stephen Wise, who is to represent the interests of Zionist Jews at the forthcoming conference on Palestine problems at St. James’s Palace on February 4 arrived in London, where he was welcomed by Mr. Malcolm MacDonald, the secretary of state for the colonies, on behalf of the British government. Rabbi Dr. Stephen Wise fills in his leisure moments at his London hotel after his arrival on Feb. 4, 1939, by reading a book dealing with Herr Hitler, as can be seen from the picture. The Palestine conference, in which the British government is seeking to Bring Agreement between Jews and Arabs, has opened at St. James’s Palace, London, England. Jewish delegates and Arabs are meeting separately as the Arabs refuse to meet with the Jews. The situation is further complicated for the British government by the fact that even all the Arabs do not wish to sit together. Dr. Chaim Weizmann, noted scientist, leader of the Jewish delegation, leaving St. James’s Palace, London, England on Feb. 7, 1939 Some of the Arab delegates to attend the forthcoming Palestine conference in London arrived at Waterloo. Prince Abdul Monheim, smiling as he drove away from Waterloo on his arrival in London on Jan. 26, 1939 The Prime Minister opened the conference on the future of Palestine in the old Banqueting hall at St. James’s Palace in London on Feb. 7, 1939. Mr. Chamberlain opened the discussions with a speech to the Arab delegations at 10.30 A.M., and at midday, he made the opening speech to the Jewish agency delegation, this course being necessary because the Arabs not recognize the Jewish Agency as a body with whom they can treat. A general view of the first meeting of the Jewish of the conference at St. James’s. The Arab centre party who are now in London, to attend the deliberations of the conference on Palestine now meeting daily at St. James’s Palace, gave a reception and tea party at the Hyde Park hotel on Feb. 8, 1939, to the other Arab delegations to the conference, including the delegations from the Yemen, from Egypt, Iraq, and Palestine. Mr. Malcolm Macdonald, the British minister for the colonies, was among the number of distinguished guests. Nuri el said Pasha, the Iraqi minister, left, with the Yemen delegates, Al Qadhi IBN Hussain Amri (with glasses), and Al Qadhi Muhammed Abdullah at the Hyde Park hotel. The Arab centre party who are now in London, to attend the deliberations of the conference on Palestine now meeting daily at St. James’s Palace,

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