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Welcome To The City of al-Lydd
District of al-Ramla
اللد - לוד
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Town Statistics & Facts

Statistic/Fact

Value
Occupation date

July 11th, 1948

Elevation from the sea 50 meters
Maps Map of al-Lydd city


Map of al-Ramla district and neighboring villages

Attacking Israeli force Haganah and IZL forces attacked the city from the East and North. The Eastern attack attack originated from Khulda, al-Qubab, Jimzu, and Danyal, and the Northern attack originated from Majdal al-Sadiq, Qula, and al-Muzayri'a. During the attack on the city, the Zionists used fighter bombers for the first time to bomb the city and the nearby airport.
City defenders Transjordan army, some Arab Liberation Army, and local Palestinian militias.
The people of al-Lydd and al-Ramla should be very proud of their city defenders because in April and May 1948, they launched several counter attacks on the Zionist forces, which resulted in the liberation of several surrounding villages between al-Lydd and Jaffa, plus the liberation of al-Lydd train station & its airport.

The question which begs itself: -
What would have happened if these heroes were given the chance of defending their cities?
Acts of terror Soon after the city's occupation, the "Jewish Army" committed its biggest massacre in Palestine, which resulted in the murder of 426 men, women, and children. At least, 176 of these people were slaughtered in Dahmash mosque, which functioned as the city's main mosque.
Ethnic cleansing Soon after al-Lydd's massacre, the inhabitants were terrorized into fleeing their city, and out of the 19,000 people who used to call al-Lydd home, only 1,052 were allowed to stay.

Yitzhak Rabin, the Noble Prize winner, has written in his diary soon after Lydda's and Ramla's occupation:

"After attacking Lydda [later called Lod]
Ben-Gurion would repeat the question: What is to be done with the population?, waving his hand in a gesture which said: Drive them out!.
'Driving out' is a term with a harsh ring, .... Psychologically, this was on of the most difficult actions we undertook." (Soldier Of Peace, p. 140-141)

Later, Rabin underlined the cruelty of the operation as mirrored in the reaction of his soldiers. He stated during an interview (which is still censored in Israeli publications to this day) with David Shipler from the New York Times on October 22, 1979:

"Great Suffering was inflicted upon the men taking part in the eviction action. [They] included youth-movement graduates who had been inculcated with values such as international brotherhood and humaneness. The eviction action went beyond the concepts they were used to. There were some fellows who refused to take part. . . Prolonged propaganda activities were required after the action . . . to explain why we were obliged to undertake such a harsh and cruel action." (Simha Falpan, p. 101)

Just before the 1948 war, the residents of the twin cities, Lydda and al-Ramla, almost constituted 20% of the total urban population in central Palestine, inclusive of Tel-Aviv. Currently, the former residents and their descendents number at least a half a million, who mostly live in deplorable refugee camps in and around Amman (Jordan) and Ramallah (the occupied West Bank). According to Rabin, the decision to ethnically cleanse the twin cities was an agonizing decision, however, his guilty conscious did not stop him from placing a similar order against three nearby villages ('Imwas, Yalu, and Bayt Nuba) 19 years later. The exodus from Lydda and al- Ramla was portrayed firsthand by Ismail Shammout, the renowned Palestinians artist from Lydda itself, click here to view his exodus gallery. To learn more about the ethnic cleansing of Lydda and al-Ramla based on declassified Israeli archives, we suggest clicking here as well .

Click here if you wish o learn more about cleansing Lydda and Ramla based on declassified Israeli documents and personal diaries.

Refugees' migration route On July 14th 1948, the " Jewish Army" terrorized the inhabitants of al-Lydd and al-Ramla into fleeing to Ramallah via al-Qubab, Salbit, Bayt Nabala, and Kufr Ein. Close to 55,000 people clogged the roads in and out of Ramallah for weeks, where 350 Palestinians died due to exhaustion and dehydration. As the refugees were departing the twin cities, many of them, especially the women, were robbed, stripped of their jewelry and money at roadblocks that were manned "Jewish Army". In that respect, it's worth quoting Aharon Cizling, the 1st Israel Agriculture Minister, who stated in July, 1948 :

". ..It's been said that . 'there were cases of rape in Ramla. I can forgive rape, but I will not forgive other acts which seem to me much worse. When they enter a town and forcibly remove rings from the fingers and jewelry from someone's neck, that's a very grave matter. ... Many are guilty of it." (1949, The First Israelis, p. 71-72)

It's very sad that for the first time in the twentieth century, terrorizing civilians out of their homes was used to achieve military and political objectives. In that regard, Yigal Allon explained how this expulsion had a "positive" impact on the war, at least from the hit point of view. He stated in mid-July 1948:

"clogged the routes of the advance of the [Transjordan Arab] Legion and had foisted upon the Arab economy the problem of "maintaining another 45,000 souls . . . Moreover, the phenomenon of the flight of tens of thousands will no doubt cause demoralization in every Arab area [the refugees] reach . . . This victory will yet have great effect on other sectors." (Benny Morris, p. 211 & Israel: A History, p. 218)

Often, the Israeli commanders on the scene were encouraged to use refugees to burden the enemy's war machine, clog their roads, divert food and other supplies away from their enemy, and to demoralization the population and the Arab armies.

City's name through history The city may have picked its name from a Greek tribe known by Lydda, who were the first to settle the area. During the Roman period, the city was known by Diospolis, but soon after the Muslim Arabs conquest, al-Lydd regained its original name until the Zionists changed its name to Lod in 1948.
City area size In 1945, al-Lydd city covered an area of 3,855 dunums, which included 645 dunums for roads, wadies, and railroads, ... etc.
Municipality area size In 1945, al-Lydd municipality covered an area of 19,868 dunums, which included 663 dunums for roads, wadies, and railroads, ... etc. It should be noted that al-Lydd was a Zionist Free Zone (ZFZ) until its occupation.
Nearby wadies & rivers To the west of the city, al-Lydd border Wadi al-Sarar just before it terminates into al-'Awja river.
Weather
Category

Note

Temperature The average temperature in al-Lydd ranged from 13 Celsius in January to 26 Celsius in August.
Humidity 65%
Rainfall On average al-Lydd received 500 millimeters of rainfall every year.
Major plantations In the years between 1942-1945, al-Lydda's had 3,217 dunums planted with citrus trees, and 5,900 dunums planted with olive trees.

Since Israeli still maintains and enforces the "Law Of Absentees", most of Lydda's industries, farms, buses, cars, railroads, cattle, real states, ... etc. have been looted and became the property of the "Jewish state". When similar injustices were perpetrated against Europe's Jewish citizens by the Germans and the Swiss during WWII, the Jews of the world demanded justice for their looted art works and properties. The question which begs to be asked is :-

Are the Palestinian people entitled for compensation for their looted properties?

Distance from other towns
Town Distance From Jaffa
Jerusalem 47 (km) south east
'Aqir 9.5 (km) south west
Bab al-Wad 21 (km) south west
al-Lydd station 3 (km) north
Pitach Tikva (Mlabiss) 18 (km) north west
Kafer 'Ana 8 (km) north west
al-Ramla 5 (km) north west
Jaffa 16 (km) north west
Population
Year Total Muslim
Arabs
Christian
Arabs
Jews
1922 7,000 5,000 2,000 0
1922 8,103 7,166 926 11
1931 11,250 10,012 1,210 28
1947 18,250 18,250* N/A 0
1950 10,450 1,050* N/A 9,400
1966 25,000 N/A N/A N/A
1973 36,000 4,800* N/A 31,200
* The statistic includes Muslim & Christian Arabs.
Number of houses In 1931, al-Lydd had 2,475 houses, which either were all looted or destroyed by the "Jewish state".
City's income & expenses
Year Income* Expenses*
1927 4,687 5,591
1932 6,790 5,705
1935 6,141 5,985
1939 3,485 3,059
1940 6,031 4,774
1943 19,128 15,796
1944 12,451 25,332
* In Palestinian Pound
Schools
School Notes
al-Lydd Boys
High School
A government high school that educated its students up to the 11th grade. In 1948, it had an enrollment of 1,046 students, 19 classes, a staff of 24 instructors, a library with 818 books, and owned 14 dunums of land of which 9 dunums were allocated for agriculture classes.
al-Lydd
Girls School
A government elementary school, which in 1948 had an enrollment of 378 girls, a staff of 9 instructors, and library with 767 books.

Note that al-Lydd also had 2 other schools for girls with a total enrollment of 238 girls, and seven other schools for boys with a total enrollment of 713 boys. The names of these schools are not available, and if you know the names of these schools please do not hesitate to share this data with us

Click here, for general school statistics.

Israeli settlements within city borders The city of Lod occupies the city plus Zeitan in the north, Yagel nearby the airport, Ahi'Eser between the last two, Ginnaton to the east close to Ben Shemen.

al-Lydd's School Statistics

Students Enrollment Breakdown By School Type (based on 1946 census)

Students Enrollment

Government Others Total
Boys 734 713 1,447
Girls 364 238 602
Total 1,098 951 2,049
Percentage 53.6% 46.4% 100%

Bibliography

Our primary sources for the above data was Biladuna Filisteen (2nd set, volume 4) by Mustafa Murad al-Dabagh and The Palestine Encyclopedia.

More Information
Language External Links
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Hebrew Nakba-Online

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