Posted by Al Jazeera on May 15, 2018 in News Clips
If you are familiar with the term "Nakba", you probably think of it as a historical Palestinian grievance over events that unfolded 70 years ago. That was the time when Zionist militias facilitated the creation of the state of Israel by depopulating Palestinian villages, driving some 750,000 people out of their homes.
Israel's founder David Ben-Gurion famously remarked: "I support compulsory transfer. I don't see anything immoral in it." Some Palestinians fled their towns upon hearing of the unfolding violence nearby. Villages that tried to resist displacement, like the village of Deir Yassin, were decimated. Conservative estimates put the death toll in Deir Yassin at 110, with a lieutenant colonel in the Israeli military who witnessed the aftermath saying: "There was a feeling of considerable slaughter and it was hard for me to explain it to myself as having been done in self-defence. My impression was more of a massacre than anything else."
When all was said and done, Israel was established on nearly 78 percent of historic Palestine, seizing or destroying well over 400 Palestinian villages in the process, and barring Palestinian refugees from returning ever since.
As Israel celebrates its 70th anniversary, Palestinians are mourning the 70th anniversary of the 1948 "catastrophe" (Nakba). If the Nakba is the "event" by which Israel devastated the Palestinian population in pursuit of an exclusivist national project, then it's not merely a historical event, but very much a living reality today. This is true within Israel, where the Supreme Court continues to clear the way for the demolition of Bedouin communities for the explicit purpose of replacing them with Jewish neighbourhoods, ignoring the objections of major human rights organisations like Human Rights Watch and Amnesty International.Original Article