As early Zionists in the U.S. and elsewhere pushed for the creation of a Jewish state, Zionism in Palestine simultaneously tried to clear the land of Muslim and Christian inhabitants and replace them with Jewish immigrants.
This was a tall order, as Muslims and Christians accounted for more than 95 percent of the population of Palestine. Zionists planned to try first to buy up the land until the previous inhabitants had emigrated; failing this, they would use violence to force them out. This dual strategy was discussed in various written documents cited by numerous Palestinian and Israeli historians.
As this colonial project grew, the indigenous Palestinians reacted with occasional bursts of violence; Zionists had anticipated this since people usually resist being expelled from their land.
When the buyout effort was able to obtain only a few percent of the land, Zionists created a number of terrorist groups to fight against both the Palestinians and the British. Terrorist and future Israeli Prime Minister Menachem Begin later bragged that Zionists had brought terrorism both to the Middle East and to the world at large.
By the eve of the creation of Israel, the Zionist immigration and buyout project had increased the Jewish population of Palestine to 30 percent and land ownership from 1 percent to approximately 6.7 percent.
This was in 1947, when the British at last announced that they would end their control of Palestine. Britain turned the territory’s fate over to the United Nations.
– pgs. 43, 44, AGAINST OUR BETTER JUDGMENT: How the U.S. was used to create Israel, by Alison Weir, 2014
By now, most of you readers know the story, but I think I should go over it once again. In June of 1993, the People’s United Party (PUP) lost a general election just about everybody expected them to win. A hastily constructed coalition between the United Democratic Party (UDP) and the National Alliance for Belizean Rights (NABR) defeated the PUP, which had called the general election fifteen months before they had to do so, by a 16-13 margin in seats. The UDP/NABR won even though the PUP polled 2,000 more popular votes than they did!
Actually, the NABR only had one candidate on the UDP/NABR ticket, and that was the Hon. Philip Goldson in the Albert constituency. The coalition presented two candidates who had originally joined NABR when Mr. Philip led a breakaway from the UDP to form NABR in 1991. These were Hubert Elrington in Lake Independence and Sam Rhaburn in Belize Rural North, but these two had both quickly returned to the ranks of the UDP, then under the leadership of Hon. Manuel Esquivel.
As late as January and March of 1993, the NABR was presenting its own candidates in the Freetown bye-election and the Belize City Council election, respectively. In both these elections, the PUP crushed the UDP, with NABR running a weak third.
But Mr. Goldson was nothing if he was not a determined man. He had fought against great odds for much of his political life, had even served nine months in Her Majesty’s Prison for those beliefs, and he had become convinced that the Maritime Areas Act of 1991, originally supported by both the ruling PUP and the Esquivel/Barrow UDP leadership, was a sellout. And, Mr. Goldson had earned a special place in the minds and hearts of the Belizean people. Mr. Goldson was more than just a single man: he was a national institution.
The single Goldson act of agreeing to a coalition with the UDP for the June 30, 1993 general election made the UDP/NABR ticket credible for many Belizeans who had been highly skeptical of the two when they were separate. Mr. Esquivel promised Mr. Goldson that if the coalition won the general election, he would repeal the Maritime Areas Act. That was why Mr. Goldson agreed to the coalition. The coalition won, but Mr. Esquivel reneged on his promise to Mr. Goldson. Such is politics.
In the 1993 general election, the PUP lost all six Belize City Southside seats to the UDP/NABR, and the PUP decided to approach yours truly for support. This was done through both Hon. Said Musa and Hon. Florencio Marin, Sr., who were PUP Deputy Leaders to Party Leader, Rt. Hon. George Price, at the time. The PUP even had the late business mogul, Barry Bowen, meet with me, at Hon. Musa’s law office and in his company, in seeking to convince me to become the PUP’s Lake Independence candidate.
I had retired from electoral politics twice before, the first time after the November 1974 general election and the second time after the December 1977 Belize City Council election. I’d always felt that the first retirement should have sealed that deal, and that December 1977 was a personal mistake, so I decided to remain where I was.
My second son, Cordel, was completing university studies around this time, so I asked him if he would be interested. He joined the PUP in early 1994, if I remember correctly, and the rest is history. I support Cordel, of course, but I do not interfere in his politics. I may suggest things to him in our discussions, but I cannot give him instructions. He is a grown man, with allegiance to his Lake I constituency, you understand.
In fact, the performance of Cordel Hyde’s Lake Independence committee in the March municipal elections this year made it clear to me that he had become a serious force in the PUP, and it appeared to me that I probably would have to make some adjustments in how I looked at, and dealt with, certain issues. After all, Cordel can’t have his old man creating problems for him: I’m the one who invited him there.
So then, most of you will understand me when I say that I can’t really comment about what appears to be going on inside the PUP leadership. If you hold that against me, you have the right to do so. I have explained my position.
With respect to the ruling UDP, I am free to talk. I would say that it must be a strange situation for the UDP behind closed doors. The party has never been more powerful than it appears to be presently, and the Party Leader/Prime Minister, Hon. Dean Barrow, is unchallenged Maximum Leader. But, as I have said to you many times before, there was a UBAD element which was a part of the formation of the UDP in September of 1973.
A major issue in UBAD, from our establishment in 1969, had always been the soft position of the ruling PUP on the Guatemalan claim. We were young and macho in UBAD. The members of the UBAD ten-member executive who split in early 1973 with my half of the leadership to support the Unity Congress (the precursor to the UDP), were therefore Belizeans who were hard line where the Guatemalan claim was concerned. The core membership of the National Independence Party (NIP), which became part of the UDP at foundation, were also hard line. In 2015, the ruling UDP is as soft on Guatemala as the PUP ever was.
I’m saying that there have to be elements inside the UDP who are uncomfortable, at the very least, with developments over the last five months which feature Guatemalan aggression and Belizean appeasement. The question is, it seems to me, of whom are such UDP supporters more afraid: the PUP or Guatemala?
In early 1973 when the split in UBAD occurred, I think those who went against me were totally focused on the ruling PUP as the devil on earth. Personally, I always remained focused on white supremacy as the ultimate enemy, and Guatemala as the existential threat. Yes, the ruling PUP was a thorn in our sides, but one simply had to look past them if one sought to confront the real enemies of the Belizean people.
Listen, there are no existential guarantees where the survival of the nation-state of Belize is concerned. This is a work in daily progress. Our iconic national heroes, Mr. Price and Mr. Goldson, believed intensely in the viability and necessity of this nation-state. But, they could not provide any guarantees. Now they are gone. The reality is, the Battle of St. George’s Caye “don’t mean diddly” in July of 2015. This is not what you want to hear. But, I am no politician: my job is to tell you what you need to know.
Power to the people. Remember Danny Conorquie. Fight for Belize.