JERUSALEM (Jul. 10)
Arab-Jewish strife assumed the proportions of open warfare today, with the port of Haifa the chief battleground and Jews suffering 24 casualties in two bombings and stonings. At least six other Jews and two Arabs were wounded in other actions.
Jewish-owned buses were the targets in the Haifa bombings, which occurred almost under the very noses of Hundreds of British sailors and troops.
Kingsway, Haifa business street where 23 Arabs and five Jews were killed in last Wednesday’s bombing and pitched battle, was turned into a veritable no man’s land, with the opposing forces kept apart by heavily armed military which frequently cleared the streets with fixed bayonets. In the neighboring streets stone fights were continuously breaking out.
With more reinforcements being rushed from Egypt and the authorities straining every effort to keep the situation under control without resorting to martial law, the Jewish National Council took emergency action to check reprisals. After the Council’s leaders and Chief Rabbi Isaac Herzog had pointed out the fatal results of irresponsible acts on the Palestine Jewish community and the Zionist movement, a committee of six was constituted to combat retaliatory measures against Aras terrorism. The committee comprises representatives of the Tel Aviv municipality, the Jerusalem and Haifa Jewish communities, the Jewish Farmers’ Association, the Histadruth (Jewish Labor Federation) and the Agudath Israel, religious non-Zionist body.
The Council meeting heard Isaac Ben Zvi, president, denounce acts of revenge as the work of irresponsible persons who were “knifing Palestine Jewry from behind.”
One of the Haifa bombings occurred in front of the Government Hospital, thirteen passengers in a Jewish-owned bus being wounded, three of them critically. in the other bombing, eight Jews were wounded, one critically, the others seriously. After a third explosion, which occurred near the Central Railway Station, with no casualties reported, a Jewish youth was arrested upon the accusation of Arabs.
Acts of terrorism continued to keep tension high in other parts of Palestine, including Jerusalem, Tiberias and the Arab centers of Nablus, Tulkarem and Jenin, where a general strike was in full force.
Three Jews were wounded in Tiberias by shots fired at them as they sat playing dominoes on the veranda of a cafe on the shores of Lake Tiberias. One of the wounded was the proprietor, Moshe Abibi, 40. The others were guests, Shlomo Weizman, 50, and Gabriel Buek, 22. The shooting was done by two Arabs.
A bomb was thrown from a speeding Lifta-bound Arab bus into a Jewish-owned car in the Machne Yehuda quarter of Jerusalem, wounding a Jew and an Arab. A Jewish bus passing Ramleh was stoned, several of the passengers being seriously injured.
Two Jewish special policemen were seriously wounded when shot by Arabs in the Emek Zebulon area. They are Moshe Eisenbard, 26, who is in a critical condition, and Moshe Cize, 27.
An Arab member of the Criminal Investigation Department was seriously wounded Saturday when a bomb exploded shortly after curfew. A German Jew, Joachim Wolf, 34, was knifed and stoned near King Feisal’s monument in Haifa earlier in the day.
Jews wounded in today’s Haifa bombings include: Walter Shachtel, bus driver; Joseph Gross, 14; Uri Kramer, 48; Reuben Kramer, 23; Dov Karol, 35; Arieh Shushtachoski; Aron Goldman; and Nathan Dubiner. Arieh Benjaminov, a Jew wounded in the Tel Aviv-Jaffa border clashes last week, died in the Hadassah Hospital here.
The red, white and green Arab national flag was carried for the first time in a battle yesterday when a uniformed band captured a police post in Shafraan, north of Haifa, seized the rifles of a dozen arab policemen and ran up their banner. Troops today occupied the village.
Another Arab band drove police out of the village of Tubas, near Nablus, seriously wounding the brother of the Superintendent of Police. a third body of terrorists engaged police near Silat el Daher, capturing a French mortar. Six Arab constables and the Government Foresty Officer were captured when another band invaded Tulkarem.
Police continued making arrests among Zionist Revisionists, under the Crime Prevention Ordinance. Among those taken in custody was Ernest Davis, 35, an attorney.
When police evacuated the last 13 Jews from the village of Pekyin, village where they had lived in continuous line since the destruction of the second, temple, one patriarch of 110 refused to go, declaring he had not left the village all his life and had no intention of leaving now. He was finally placed under the special protection of a neighboring Arab mukhtar (village chieftain). The others were taken to Beth Galim.