"Refrigerators and caviar, champagne and carpets – a first-ever comprehensive study by historian Adam Raz reveals the extent to which Jews looted Arab property during the War of Independence, and explains why Ben-Gurion stated: ‘Most of the Jews are thieves’"
"We turned a mahogany closet into a chicken coop and we swept up the garbage with a silver tray. There was chinaware with gold embellishments, and we would spread a sheet on the table and place chinaware and gold on it, and when the food was finished, everything was taken together to the basement. In another place, we found a storeroom with 10,000 boxes of caviar, that’s what they counted. After that, the guys couldn’t touch caviar again their whole life. There was a feeling on one hand of shame at the behavior, and on the other hand a feeling of lawlessness. We spent 12 days there, when Jerusalem was groaning under horrible shortages, and we were putting on weight. We ate chicken and delicacies you wouldn’t believe. In the headquarters at Notre Dame, some people shaved with champagne.”" Haaretz
Well, pilgrims, soldiers loot, or "liberate" or take "souvenirs." American soldiers are particularly prone to this.
I never looted anywhere. It would have been a personal fault and contrary to my code of behavior. It is true that where I fought, the enemy and civilian people had nothing worth taking. We gave them the means of life rather than the opposite.
But, in WW2, in Europe, US soldiers helped themselves to German civilian goods. The APO shipped it home for them as "souvenirs." I have seen a lot of German heirloom silver in the homes of WW2 veterans.
I am not surprised that Israeli soldiers of the Palmach, Hagganah, Irgun, Stern Gang, etc. looted. I am a little surprised that Israeli Jewish civilians participated so enthusiastically and that churches and mosques were also looted.
BTW, "Notre Dame" as mentioned in the last line quoted. is the Notre Dame hostel for pilgrims. It operates as a hotel in normal times and of course has a kitchen and wine cellar. It was on the front line right across the street from the wall of the Old City which was then defended by Glubb Pasha's beduin soldiers of the Arab Legion of Jordan.
A friend of mine who was present at the taking of Baghdad in 2003 laughed and said "we took a little and left a little." A sad and shameful thing. I thought I had taught him better.
New subject – I see that Israel is now swamped with COVID cases and hospitalizations. Perhaps Trump can issue an order from his sickbed to send a navy hospital ship to Tel Aviv. IMO a condition would have to be that the Israelis actually use the ship unlike what happened in New York City. pl