What happened next was either an important military victory in a fledgling state’s effort to defend itself or a massacre of civilians in the human rights tragedy that Palestinians call the Nakba (the expulsion). In either case, Tantura no longer exists.
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In 1948, the village of Tantura fell within the borders of the newly created state of Israel. It was a small, seaside village of approximately 1,200 residents, most of them Arab farmers and fishermen. As the war between Israel and its Arab neighbors escalated, Tantura became an important transit point for smuggling supplies to a clutch of Arab villages in the area. To sever this supply line, and also because Tantura occupied a strategic location on the road between Tel Aviv and Haifa, the new Israeli government decided to “expel or subdue” the inhabitants.
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