Moslem Sabbath Comparatively Quiet; War Preparations Awe Arabs
Menu JTA Search

Moslem Sabbath Comparatively Quiet; War Preparations Awe Arabs

Download PDF for this date

With infantry, tanks, airplanes and a newly-arrived detachment of horse artillery prepared to quell any disturbances, expected Arab demonstrations in connection with the Moslem Sabbath today failed to materialize.

Thousands of Arabs left mosques in Jerusalem and Jaffa peacefully following their devotions. They dispersed in orderly fashion when ordered to, realizing the military and police were prepared to carry out instructions to shoot on the slightest provocation.

A detachment of 800 steel-helmeted British troops, equipped with machine guns, stood guard in Jaffa, covering the mosques of that predominantly Arab city where started on April 19 the disorders which have to date accounted for 26 Jewish, one Christian, and 17 Arab lives.

Planes circled low over the city, on the lookout for disturbances. In Jaffa harbor, the British cruiser Beagle again dropped anchor after having been away since Wednesday. Tel Aviv police were equipped with machine guns.

By the afternoon, the streets of Jaffa were completely deserted except for the troops and police.

Jerusalem presented a war-like appearance, with barbed-wire barriers up in the Street of the Prophets, which runs through the thickly Jewish-populated quarter of Meah Shearim.


A detachment of horse artillery from Egypt rumbled into Jerusalem, while a battalion of Seaforth Highlanders that left Cairo last night was momentarily expected.

A corps of tanks was dispatched to Nablus, ancient Arab city, where disturbances were feared might break out after the Moslem services.

Police and soldiers in all sections of the country were under orders to shoot at the slightest attempt at demonstrations.

Bus communications between Jerusalem and Tel Aviv, which had been suspended following yesterday’s ambuscade by Arabs of a Jewish bus and four private cars, during which two Jews and three British soldiers were seriously wounded, were resumed this afternoon. Each bus plying between the two cities carried an extra driver in the event the regular driver was injured.

A special edition of the Official Gazette announced a new ordinance authorizing police to exile from one city to another any persons necessary to maintain order. The ordinance is believed to be a prelude to stronger measures against leaders of the anti-Jewish campaign of terror.


Isolated cases of violence and arson were reported during the day.

A Government communique reported a caravan conveying food to Haifa was attacked by an armed Arab band. Shots were exchanged with the caravan’s police escort. The Arabs escaped.

The communique said there were bombings and cases of arson in northern Palestine and more telephone wires were cut.

Shots were fired at a bus traveling between Ramleh and Beit Dagan. There were no casualties.

A railroad track between Palestine and Egypt was damaged. It was immediately repaired.

During the night three bombs were thrown into the Levant Fair grounds in Tel Aviv. Another bomb was hurled into Yehuda Halevi Street in that city. No damage in either case was reported.

Incendiary fires burned 110 dunams of crops in the Jewish colony of Zikhron Jakob. Part of the Government forest preserve near Haifa was also set on fire.

An Arab caught with two bombs in his possession was arrested in Haifa. Nineteen others were arrested in connection with shots that were fired at the Shemen factory in Jerusalem.

Bombs were thrown in Jaffa and Beit Dagan. Telephone wires were cut in several places. A railroad bridge was bombed between Lydda and Haifa.

A communique last night reported that shots were fired at police in Balfouria, Nablus and the Old City of Jerusalem. In the latter section, police killed an Arab who drew a revolver on them when they had halted him to search him for arms.

Founding Funders

The digitization of the JTA Archive would not have been possible without the generous support of the following donors:
  • The Gottesman Fund
  • Righteous Persons Foundation
  • Charles H. Revson Foundation
  • Elisa Spungen Bildner and Robert Bildner, in honor of Norma Spungen
  • George S. Blumenthal
  • Grace and Scott Offen Charitable Fund