The De-Arabization of West Jerusalem 1947-50

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VOL. 27


No. 2
P. 5
The De-Arabization of West Jerusalem 1947-50

This article describes the progressive depopulation of the Arab neighborhoods of West Jerusalem following the outbreak of the fighting in late 1947. By the time the State of Israel was proclaimed on 15 May 1948, West Jerusalem already had fallen to Zionist forces. Quoting from eyewitness accounts, the author recounts the widespread looting that followed the Arab evacuation and the settlement of Jewish immigrants and Israeli government officials in the Arab houses. By the end of 1949, all of West Jerusalem's Arab neighborhoods had been settled by Israelis.

Nathan Krystall works in the Project for Palestinian Residency and Refugee Rights of the Alternative Information Center in Jerusalem.This article is excerpted from a chapter of a forthcoming book on Arab West Jerusalem to be published by the Institute for Jerusalem Studies and the Alternative Information Center. The author wishes to thank Josh Block, Munir Fakher al-Din, Kamal Ja'fari, and Abigail Krystall, his mother, for their assistance.