From the July 29, 1948 Palestine Post, Column One by David Courtney, a non-Jewish British writer:
This is one of the earlier sources that the Arab League encouraged the refugee problem in order to gain propaganda points. He is explicit that Abu Gosh residents were told to leave their homes by the Arab leaders.
Note also that Courtney believes that most Palestinian Arabs had no desire for this war, "except for a few hotheads." I think it was more than a few but to an large extent he is right. But they didn't fight very hard to keep their land either; they just wanted to move their families elsewhere so they could start again - and the Arab countries forced them to return to fight the Jews, because they didn't want to use their own people! My next chapter will elaborate on this and other topics from 1948-1950 (iy"H).
For another great Courtney column on the same topic a year later, see my posting here.