Al-Tantura Massacre

• Date: May 22-23, 1948.

• Attackers: Zionist forces-the 33rd Battalion of the “Alexandroni Brigade” in the Haganah.

• Casualty count: about 260.

June 13, 1948: The expulsion of Tantura women, children and elderly from Fureidis to Jordan. The Red Cross is supervising. (Beno Rothenberg collection, courtesy of the Israel State Archives. All rights reserved.)

Description of the event: In 1948, a tragic event known as the Al-Tantura Massacre happened. This occurred when a group called Zionist forces attacked a village, causing the deaths of 260 people, mainly women, children, and old folks. The attack forced the people of the village to leave, and they were mistreated. On the night of May 22-23, 1948, the Zionist forces, particularly the 33rd Battalion of the “Alexandroni Brigade” in the Haganah, attacked Al-Tantura. They quickly took control of the village, and around 1, 200 residents had to move to nearby villages. The Israeli army not only took over the village but also engaged in violent actions in the streets for hours. They even fired at the residents, including in the cemetery where the victims were buried. Later on, a parking lot was built on top of the mass grave, serving the “Dor” colony south of Haifa. Recently, a mass grave containing more than 200 bodies was discovered in the village of Tantura.

Teddy Katz’s research confirming the Al-Tantura Massacre: In the late 1990s, Teddy Katz’s University of Haifa master’s thesis confirmed that Israel committed mass murder in the 1948 Al-Tantura Massacre. Based on 140 hours of interviews with 135 witnesses, half Jewish and half Arab, the thesis went unnoticed until Maariv published it in 2000. Veterans of the accused IOF( Israeli Occupation Force) unit sued Katz for defamation, leading to a case dismissal without hearing his tapes. Katz signed a retraction under pressure, resulting in the university revoking his degree.


[1] Elmusa, Sharif S.; Khalidi, Muhammad Ali (1992). All that Remains: The Palestinian Villages Occupied and Depopulated by Israel in 1948. Washington, D.C.: Institute for Palestine Studies. ISBN 978-0-88728-224-9.

[2] Kamel, Lorenzo (2010). “The Tantura Affaire”. Oriente Moderno. 90 (2): 397–410. doi:10.1163/22138617-09002007. JSTOR 23253467.

[3] Khader, Jamil (2008). “After Tantura/after Auschwitz: Trauma, postcoloniality and the (un)writing of the Nakbah in the documentary film Paradise Lost”. Journal of Postcolonial Writing. 44 (4): 355–365. doi:10.1080/17449850802410473. S2CID 145118253.

[4] The Guardian. (2023, May 25). “Study on 1948 Israeli Massacre in Tantura Reveals Palestinian Village Mass Graves Under Car Park.” Retrieved from

[5] Palumbo, Michael. The Palestinian Catastrophe: The 1948 Expulsion of a People from Their Homeland. London: Faber & Faber, 1987.

[6] Muslih, Nour al-Din. “Expelling the Palestinians: The Concept of ‘Transfer’ in Zionist Thought and Planning, 1882 – 1948.” Beirut: Institute for Palestine Studies, 1992.

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