dinsdag 15 mei 2012

Dagboek 1948: een staat wordt geboren 15 mei 1948

MAY 15th Heavy firing in Jerusalem all day. Considerable activity in the Citadel and the Jaffa Gate and heavy firing in this vicinity. For the first few days the Arabs were very disorganized with no leader and were rushing about in small parties hither and thither, quite uncoordinated.

We kept the Compound gate locked with the object of trying to keep the Compound free of armed men of either party, as we knew that if once armed men took up their positions in the Compound they would draw fire on us from the opposite side. However, a party of armed Arabs, finding the gate locked, swarmed over the top and broke into the Hostel, climbing up the outside steps leading to the bedrooms overlooking the Jewish Quarter of the Old City. We protested against this invasion in vain and one of them fired a burst from a tommy-gun from one of the windows. They were extremely nervous of Jews trying to break into Christ Church from the Old City and make for the Citadel, but we eventually persuaded them to leave. A short time later another armed party headed by an Englishman came in, but these were persuaded to leave without firing.

Fire was also directed at the Jewish Quarter in the Old City from the Moslem Compound adjoining the Hostel. This fire attracted mortars from the Jewish Quarter and one exploded in their Compound, killing a lad of 16 who was later buried in the Compound the same day. Another missile fell into their Compound right up against two of my office windows which face their Compound. Clouds of smoke seeped through the windows and filled the office. We were afraid of an explosion but fortunately the missile, whatever it was, fizzled out without doing any damage.

Reports of developments during the day outside the Compound included the occupation of Allenby Square and the German Colony by the Jews, the shelling of the Power Station in Tel Aviv by Egyptian aircraft and the shelling of the Jewish Quarters in new Jerusalem by heavy guns, and the fall of Jewish colonies near Hebron.

Grotere kaart weergeven