by Eileen Fleming
15 May, 2010
Every May 15th since the creation of the state of Israel in 1948, the Palestinian Exodus from the Holy Land, known as Nakba, meaning their “day of the catastrophe” is commemorated as the day the expulsions and flight of Palestinians from their towns and villages began when Israeli troops forced them from their land and created over 750,000 refugees who are still denied the right to return to their property.
Dr. Pappe, an Israeli historian and author of A History of Modern Palestine: One Land, Two Peoples, spoke in occupied East Jerusalem, 0n Nov. 8, 2006 at the Notre Dame Conference center during Sabeel’s 6th International Conference: The Forgotten Faithful: Palestinian Christians.
His topic was the “Dynamics of Forgetting” but he informed us:
“On March 10, 1948, eleven men had a meeting in the Red House headed by Ben Gurion. The eleven decided to expel one million Palestinians from historical Palestine. No minutes were taken, but many memoirs were written about that fateful meeting. A systematic ethnic cleansing of Palestine began and within seven months the Zionists managed to expel one half of all the Palestinian people from their villages and towns.”
“The Red House in Tel Aviv is gone now. It was a typical building in Tel Aviv that had all the characteristics of Mediterranean homes but with the local Palestinian architecture of the ’20’s. Today a USA Sheraton Hotel stands in its place. The Red House was the home of the Hagganah; a Jewish underground organization but before 1948 it was the home of a socialist movement, from which it received its name.
“The New York Times followed Israeli troops and reported the truth of the expulsion and separation of men and women, and of the many massacres. The world was well informed in 1948, but a year later not a trace was reported in the USA press or books. It was as if nothing ever happened.
“From March to October 1948 the USA State Department stated what was happening was a CRIME against humanity and ethnic cleansing. When ever one ethnic group expels another group they should be treated as War Criminals and the victims should be allowed to return. This is never mentioned in the USA about Palestine.
“Israel is so successful in their ethnic cleansing because the world doesn’t care! The ethnic cleansing continues via the apartheid policies of the Israeli government and because of the denial of the truth by the USA media.
“To claim Israel is the only democracy in the Middle East is bullshit! The Six Day War of 1967 escalated the ethnic cleansing and today in Jerusalem every Palestinian who fails to pay taxes, or has a minor infraction will loose their citizenship.
“In 1948 the mechanism of denial and ethnic cleansing as an IDEOLOGY, not a policy but a formula began. When Zionism began in the 19th century it was meant to be a safe haven for Jews and to help redefine Judaism as a national movement, not just a religion. Nothing wrong with either of those goals!
“But by the late 19th Century it was decided the only way these goals could be achieved was by ridding the indigenous population and it became an evil ideology.
“Israeli Jewish life will never be simple, good, or worth living while this ideology of domination, exclusiveness and superiority is allowed to continue. The mind set today is that unless Israel is an exclusive Jewish State, Palestinians will continue to be obstacles. However, there has always been a small vocal minority challenging this.
“The only thing that can save Palestinians is for the world to say ENOUGH is ENOUGH! The way to challenge and change the ethnic cleansing is to pursue true democracy and the use of sanctions and divestment, for money talks.”
And music videos and maps can express more than mere words:
Info-map orders: PIAG
Israel has also never been a Democracy!
In the May 28, 1993 edition of Yedioth Ahronoth, Ariel Sharon explained:
“The terms ‘democracy’ or ‘democratic’ are totally absent from the Declaration of Independence. This is not an accident. The intention of Zionism was not to bring democracy, needless to say. It was solely motivated by the creation in Eretz-Isrel of a Jewish state belonging to all the Jewish people and to the Jewish people alone. This is why any Jew of the Diaspora has the right to immigrate to Israel and to become a citizen of Israel.”
Jeff Halper, American Israeli, co-founder and coordinator of Israeli Committee Against House Demolitions and Professor of Anthropology, explains:
“An ethnocracy is the opposite of a democracy, although it might incorporate some elements of democracy such as universal citizenship and elections. It arises when one particular group-the Jews in Israel, the Russians in Russia, the Protestants in pre-1972 Northern Ireland, the whites in apartheid South Africa, the Shi’ite Muslims in Iran, the Malay in Malaysia and, if they had their way, the white Christian fundamentalists in the US-seize control of the government and armed forces in order to enforce a regime of exclusive privilege over other groups in what is in fact a multi-ethnic or multi-religious society. Ethnocracy, or ethno-nationalism, privileges ethnos over demos, whereby one’s ethnic affiliation, be it defined by race, descent, religion, language or national origin, takes precedence over citizenship in determining to whom a county actually ‘belongs.'”
In a 2005 interview with Jeff Halper, he informed this reporter:
“Israel has no constitution but has a Declaration of Independence which promised that Israel would abide by conditions and UN resolutions. They have not fulfilled the agreement which was the basis of their independence.”
The Constitution of the United States of America is the supreme law and very foundation and source of legal authority that underlies the very existence of these United States and the federal government. The US Constitution provides the framework for the organization of the federal government and under pins the relationship of the federal government to the states and all its citizens/people within these United States.
Jeff Halper hit another nail on the head when he wrote that the “entire conflict with the Palestinians has been reduced to one consideration: personal security…Israeli Jews prefer peace and compromise, but only if they are convinced that their prime preoccupation-security- has been credibly addressed.”
So, let’s address it, for the brutal truth is that only if we truly love our friends will we be honest with them and call them on their bad behavior. We also must be honest with ourselves about our culpability!
“Since the October War in 1973, Washington has provided Israel with a level of support dwarfing the amounts provided to any other state. It has been the largest annual recipient of direct U.S. economic and military assistance since 1976 and the largest total recipient since World War ll. Total direct U.S. aid to Israel amounts to well over $140 billion in 2003 dollars. Israel receives about $3 billion in direct foreign assistance each year, which is roughly one-fifth of America’s entire foreign aid budget. In per capita terms, the United States gives each Israeli a direct subsidy worth about $500 per year. This largesse is especially striking when one realizes that Israel is now a wealthy industrial state with a per capita income roughly equal to South Korea or Spain.” 
Just before Christmas 2010, President Obama, signed into law the biggest aid pledge of the year. NOT for struggling countries on the World Bank’s list, not for we the people without health care, but another $3 billion for Israel in 2010 and an extra $30 billion over the next decade!
Jeff Halper also told me:
“Tony Blair said 70% of all the conflicts in the world can be traced back to the Israeli Palestinian conflict. What gives us hope is that as this conflict worsens maybe Europe will figure out that American policies are against their interests and intervene…This conflict impacts the global community and especially everyone in the USA.
“If we do fix this conflict it would be a tremendous step forward in global reconciliation…This whole issue is based on Human Rights and it is a global issue requiring global intervention.
“It has been said that the Israelis do not love this land, they just want to possess it. There have been three stages to make this occupation permanent. The first was to establish the facts on the ground; the settlements. There are ½ million Israeli’s and four million Palestinians here. They have been forced into Bantustan; truncated mini states; prison states. It is apartheid and Bush and Hillary are both willing collaborators.
“In 1977, Sharon came in with a mandate, money and resources to make the Israeli presence in the West Bank irreversible. The second stage began in April 2004 when America approved the Apartheid/Convergence/Realignment Plan and eight settlement blocs. This is just like South Africa! The Bush Sharon letter exchange guaranteed that the USA considers the settlements non-negotiable. The Convergence Plan and The Wall create the borders and that is what defines Bantustans. Congress ratified the Bush plan and only Senator Byrd of West Virginia voted no and nine House Representatives.
“Israel has set up a matrix of control; a thick web of settlements guaranteed to make the occupation permanent by establishing facts on the ground. Israel denies there is an occupation, so everything is reduced to terrorism. It is our job to insist upon the human rights issue, for occupied people have International Law on their side.
“Israel is not a democracy, it is an ethnocracy: full rights to Jews, but not Palestinians.” 
In his book, Later Years Albert Einstein, wrote:
“This is a time when there seems to be a particular need for men of philosophical persuasion—that is to say, friends of wisdom and truth—to join together…We Jews should be, and remain, the carriers and patrons of spiritual values. But we should also always be aware of the fact that these spiritual values are and always have been the common goal of mankind.”
William Blake wrote that “Opposition is True Friendship” and after 62 years of Al Nakba; enough is more than enough!
LEARN MORE: THE Ongoing NAKBA
1. Jeff Halper, An Israeli in Palestine: Resisting Dispossession, Redeeming Israel, Page 74. Pluto Press, 2008
2. An Israeli in Palestine, Pages 65-66.
3. John J. Mearsheimer and Stephen M. Walt “The Israel Lobby and U.S. Foreign Policy”
4. Eileen Fleming, Memoirs of a Nice Irish-American ‘Girl’s’ Life in Occupied Territory
Only in Solidarity do “we have it in our power to begin the world again.”-Tom Paine
Founder of WeAreWideAwake.org
A Feature Correspondent for Arabisto.com
Author of “Keep Hope Alive” and “Memoirs of a Nice Irish American ‘Girl’s’ Life in Occupied Territory”
Producer “30 Minutes with Vanunu” and “13 Minutes with Vanunu”
[DS added the video]
Palestinians mark Nakba
May 15, 2010 — Palestinians across the world are marking on Saturday the 62nd anniversary of Nakba, which means catastrophe.
In 1948, hundreds of thousands of Palestinians were displaced and many became refugees due to the formation of the state of Israel.
Mass gatherings commemorating the day of “catastrophe” in the West Bank and Gaza displayed a rare instance of unity between various political factions.
Al Jazeera’s Nour Odeh reports from Beit Jala, a town in the West Bank.
Palestinians mark Nakba