Irgun Zvai LeumiClick here to view the original article.

JERUSALEM, Dec. 12 (AP) – Veteran Jewish underground fighters went on the warpath from Haifa to Hebron in a series of bloody clashes with Arabs and tonight the death toll from 13 days of bitter communal fighting in Palestine neared 200.

Jewish forces struck at seven places-Haifa, Yazur, Gaza, Shafat, Tireh, Ramle and in Jerusalem itself-on this Moslem Sabbath.

Claiming responsibility for five of these operations the underground Irgun Zvai Leumi also threatened new attacks on the British army “if the British continue to interfere and permit Arabs to import arms from abroad.”

A British soldier was killed and another wounded when Arabs fired on a British convoy entering Jaffa tonight.

The day’s disorders throughout Palestine brought death to 25 persons, 20 of them Arabs. An Associated Press tabulation showed 198 had been killed in the Holy Land since the United Nations General Assembly voted for partition. The toll for the entire Middle East stood at 314

Haifa itself was relatively quiet. Arabs leaving mosques found the streets lined with British armored cars and Bren gun carriers.


Scattered firing continued all day from the besieged Jewish section of Jerusalem’s old city. British soldiers and police patrolled the narrow streets where Arabs and Jews clashed Thursday.

Jewish workers living in the ancient section were convoyed from their jobs to their homes tonight. Units of the Scottish Highland Light Infantry moved into the area at dusk after police blocked Jaffa Gate. Thousands of Arabs gathered at mosques in the district during the day.

Jewish crowds gathered in Zion Square following reports that the Arabs were planning large-scale demonstrations. The demonstrations did not come off, however, and police turned back a group of 50 to 60 Arabs en route from Hebron to Jerusalem.

Anticipating an upsurge of Arab fury police armed with automatic weapons were ordered on a 100 percent stand-by basis, Police reports said several temporary Arab policemen on duty at isolated posts had “absconded” with arms and ammunition.

It was officially announced that the Jews who attacked the Arab village of Shafat near Jerusalem wore uniforms of the British army and police. These underground attackers entered the village undercover of automatic weapon fire, bombed two houses, shot and wounded an Arab and fled leaving two unexploded grenades.


As violence continued in the Holy land, Arabs throughout the Middle East awaited word from Cairo where ministers of Arab nations are attending an Arab League “council of war” to prevent partition of Palestine.

Organizers of the Arab “People’s Army” continued signing new recruits following the Arab League’s announcement that all fighting against partition would be up to this force until the British evacuate Palestine on or before August 1.

Jewish sources, both public and underground, said there was maneuvering going on in the ranks of Jewish fighters for positions of power in the projected Jewish state, and possibly accounted for Irgun’s taking a hand against the Arabs.

These sources listed the following factions-

1- Haganah leaders, associated with the constituted Jewish leadership, who have been holding to a restrained policy of “defense only” in the current strife with the Arabs.

2 – Menachem Beigin, Polish militarist, who commands Irgun Zvai Leumi and who is described by more conservative elements as aspiring to political leadership of the new state.

3 – Radical nationalists who run the Stern Gang and who are feared to want a behind-the -scenes dictatorial role in the new state.