The Palestinians Revolt: 1936-1938
The most difficult years Antonius experienced were 1936 through 1939. He saw and lived through the Palestinians revolt in Palestine in 1936. In 1937 he watched as the proposed partition plan provoked renewed unrest, which continued through 1938. Antonius was horrified by the violence being unleashed against Palestinians. On April 21, with the pressure and strain of continued Zionist advances generating more militant Palestinian opposition, and under the influence of the obvious success of the six-week Syrian strike, a newly formed Arab Higher Committee called for a general strike throughout Palestine. The revolt was symptomatic of the violation of Palestinian property rights, which was forcing a breakdown of Palestinian society. It was a protest against the disenfranchisenient of Palestinians and the destruction of their villages, which had been replaced by Zionist settlements. In the 1920s, nearly half of Palestinian landholdings were communal mushaa holdings, and only 10 percent of the Palestine population were tenants.