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Palestinians in North America: Our rent to pay

US Politics
on 77 Comments

Last month, Palestinians everywhere commemorated Al Nakba, the catastrophe that befell us when Israel was founded on the ruins of Palestinian towns, villages, cities, that were and remain ethnically cleansed of their indigenous people, to make room for the immigrating Jewish Zionist settlers.  Over the past few years, we have been intentional in pointing out that Al Nakba is not a historic moment frozen Pompeii-like in the past, but an ongoing daily lived reality for Palestinians everywhere. We keep losing more land to the illegal settlements, as our homes are still demolished either in collective settlements, or to make room for an apartheid bypass road, as the siege on Gaza continues, and as refugees are still denied the Right of Return. It is estimated that one in three refugees globally is Palestinian, and while the statistics may have recently changed as a result of the horrific war in Syria, it still represents a huge percentage, considering Palestine’s relatively small population, numbering less than one million in 1948.

The combined effects of the ongoing occupation, siege, land theft, extra-judicial executions, and denial of the Right of Return have led to discussions of an ongoing Nakba, even as we celebrate, in Palestine solidarity circles, the discursive change that has finally shattered the Zionist stranglehold on the mainstream narrative around the question of Palestine.  Consequently, while the circumstances of the Palestinians remain dire, today there is at least an acknowledgement that they have been victimized by Zionism.  And with that growing acknowledgement is a growing number of activists seeking to end the injustice.  As it allows for justice-minded individuals and groups to engage in solidarity with the Palestinian people, the Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions movement is proving unstoppable, even as politicians at all levels, from New York Governor Cuomo to presumptive Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton, seek to legislate against it.

But solidarity must be reciprocal.  And Diaspora Palestinians living in the US must also seek to redress the consequences of the catastrophe that befell the indigenous people of the land we now inhabit.  Many of us do recognize this injustice, and frequently begin our talks and lectures with an acknowledgement that we are speaking on stolen Indigenous land.  But we can and should do more.

I recently spoke to middle school children in the school district where I live about Al Nakba.  I took two handouts with me.  One was the map of North America, showing the tribes and the territories they inhabited prior to Europe’s conquest of this continent.  The other was the “Palestinian loss of land” postcard, showing the respective Jewish and non-Jewish populations of historic Palestine, from 1946 to 2011.

The response was very revealing.  Students looked at the map of North America with curiosity, interest, but also with no guilt, no accountability.  It felt “safe” to them to read the names of the tribes that lived where they, the descendants of immigrants, now do.  Many had a one-word comment: “Cool.” They liked that map, not recognizing it was a visual representation of devastation, even genocide.

With the “Loss of Palestinian land” postcard, there was … silence.  I prodded the students for some response, some feedback, and it became clear the silence was not because they had nothing to say, but rather because they were shocked at what the postcard depicted.  One seventh grade Social Studies teacher kept looking at the map, and asking out loud “How could this happen?  What were they thinking?  The United Nations did this?  What were they thinking?” And again, like a broken record, “what were they thinking?”

Did that teacher also wonder what the European settlers of North America were thinking?  Why were the students and teachers not horrified at the map of their country prior to its colonization?

The assumption is that, with North America, it’s over.  The harm was done over five centuries ago, the Native Americans are all gone, we celebrate Thanksgiving every November to remember the days when we couldn’t have survived without them, and the rest is ancient history, completely unrelated to our present circumstances.

And yet the indigenous catastrophe of Turtle Continent, just like our Nakba, is also ongoing.

The reservations, broken treaties, environmental racism, are very much a part of the present for Native Americans.  Without engaging in Oppression Olympics, we need to point out that while African Americans serve longer sentences than whites for the same crime (assuming whites do serve any time at all, that is), the fact remains that Native Americans serve even longer than Blacks for the same crime, and are proportionately sentenced to death even more than Blacks.

Percentage wise, Native Americans have the highest suicide rates of any other community in the US.   The legal system which allows reservations to carry out their own laws also serves to protect non-Natives from the consequences of their crimes, which means that a white person can (almost) get away with murder on a reservation.

In the wake of the horrific mass shooting at the Pulse gay bar in Orlando, Florida, we need to point out that this is not the worst mass shooting in US history, but that US history is a history of mass shootings of the indigenous peoples, from Bloody Island to Sand Creek to Wounded Knee.  A conservative number puts the dead at Wounded Knee at 300, other estimates go up to 500.   These massacres were not carried out by civilians with modern assault rifles, they were nonetheless large-scale massacres of innocent civilians.  And as we speak of mass killings before assault rifles, we need to recall the mass lynchings of African Americans, including the horrific lynching of 237 sharecroppers seeking to unionize.

Nobody ever wins when comparing oppressions, and none of these historical mass killings take away from the horror of the Pulse shooting, with its lethal mix of distinctly anti-queer, [email protected] hatred, yet they need to be recalled as we discuss the blood-soaked history of the nation we now call home.   

As Palestinians discuss our circumstances and explain our dispossession as a contemporary form of settler-colonialism, it is incumbent on us to always foreground the consequences of settler-colonialism in the Americas, where most of the Native American who survived the genocide that followed the Europeans’ arrival on these shores are now living in abject poverty in one of the wealthiest nations in the world, many of them homeless, too many of them behind bars, while the successful few face immense social and legal challenges as they seek to revive their cultural heritage, languages, customs, traditional (and much healthier) diets, and dignity.

Palestinians today are proud of the alliances we have forged with criminalized American communities: African Americans, immigrants, Muslims. But we need to do better with regards to Native Americans, on whose land we now live, and whose Nakba is not over.  The struggle is the same, from Gaza to Ferguson, but also, from Haifa to all of Turtle Continent.  Mohammad Ali spoke of “service to others” as “the rent we pay for living on this earth.”  Whatever factors brought Palestinians to live in the USA, speaking of the ongoing Native American Nakba, and creating anti-colonial alliances that better the circumstances of this country’s indigenous peoples, should be the rent we pay, for our stay here.

About Nada Elia

Nada Elia is a Palestinian scholar-activist, writer, and grassroots organizer, currently completing a book on Palestinian Diaspora activism.

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77 Responses

  1. gamal
    gamal
    June 20, 2016, 11:27 am

    Nada if you don’t know it this all about on-going, i think a great little film full of Native chatback.

    https://youtu.be/VfvAqCHpXgA

  2. mcohen.
    mcohen.
    June 20, 2016, 4:53 pm

    still do not get the trump pocohantas joke/slur that trump made.what was that about

    • Mooser
      Mooser
      June 20, 2016, 10:13 pm

      “still do not get the trump pocohantas joke/slur that trump made.what was that about”

      This should explain it completely. It’s hilarious.

    • Mooser
      Mooser
      June 21, 2016, 4:29 pm

      “mcohen”, maybe you could help me out.

      It seems to me there are echoes of things I used to hear some other people people say in this article.
      I can remember, I think, certain people talking about what they felt their obligations were in the US, what the rights and possibilities of the US made them feel they could do for or with others, to make it better for everybody.

      But it’s all just a faint memory now.

      Who were those people who said those things? ( Only thing I can remember was an occasional speech variation, when they spoke, sometimes the short “a” sounded much like the short “e”.) Who were those people? Do you know?

      I loved the article, but that slight sense of deja vu is disorienting.
      This takes nothing from the article’s merits, but I do get a sense I’ve heard similar things….nah, probably just senility creeping up on,… okay, okay, crashing down on me like a ton of bricks.

    • Mooser
      Mooser
      June 21, 2016, 4:37 pm

      Oh, look, the joke is getting funnier!

      Donald Biallystock Trump!

    • Emory Riddle
      Emory Riddle
      June 22, 2016, 1:26 pm

      Ms. Warren falsely claimed Native heritage in applying for teaching jobs at Harvard and UPenn. Harvard went along with her claim to their advantage as far as affirmative action goals and bragging about their alleged “diversity”.

      • Walker
        Walker
        June 22, 2016, 4:08 pm

        Until recently I lived in Massachusetts. Plenty of Republicans there insisted that Senator Warren lied about having Native American ancestry. None of them provided any proof, to my recollection. Do you have any proof? If so, could you please post it?

  3. JoeSmack
    JoeSmack
    June 20, 2016, 6:57 pm

    I would point out that there are still some distinctions, particularly that Zionism is a latter-day settler-colonial project carried out in the ostensible age of “Decolonization,” and that while the US settler-colonial project is unfortunately completed — stretching between oceans and no longer requiring the deployment of military forces to subjugate and destroy, Israel is still in the throws of its “fortress” stage.

    Nonetheless the distinctions do not outweigh the similarities and the writer is correct that our activism here should involve greater work with the indigenous communities.

    I enjoy hearing Nada Elia’s enlightened perspectives (this and the piece about ending the celebration of Jewish Dissent) and I hope MondoWeiss publishes more from this author.

  4. mcohen.
    mcohen.
    June 20, 2016, 9:01 pm

    are jews indigenous to israel.and if so what proof is there.
    similarly are palestinians indigenous to israel and if so what proof is there.
    i read somewhere that yasser arafat was Egyptian.

    how long does one have to live on the land to be considered indigenous
    the north american indians are considered first people.10000 years.how long have arab speaking people resided in israel.did they arrive before or after jews

    all these questions and more can be answered by wikipedia

    • Mooser
      Mooser
      June 20, 2016, 9:59 pm

      “how long does one have to live on the land to be considered indigenous”

      The Zionists did not live there at all. They came from other places. Mostly Europe, some Russia some America.

      Now if you think real hard, you can figure out the difference between living there, for however long, and not living there at all. It’s not hard.

      Yes, some Jews did live there. Palestinian Jews. There was no Israel, so how could anybody be indigenous to it?

      But please, go on.

      • ohplease
        ohplease
        June 21, 2016, 10:27 am

        Mooser there are many archaeological inscriptions referring to Israel as a people and a place that are older than any record of Palestine.

        The zionist aspirations are no different than Palestinian aspirations to in their narrative reclaim their homeland following its destruction. If hiatuses mattered then Palestinians would lose their claims too.

        But why bother with evidence when you can just let your heart bleed for the underdog?

      • eljay
        eljay
        June 21, 2016, 12:05 pm

        || ohplease: … The zionist aspirations are no different than Palestinian aspirations … ||

        Sure they are. Palestinians – the indigenous population of Palestine (incl. refugees and people up to n-generations removed from it) – want a Palestinian state in Palestine.

        Zio-supremacists – people who happen to be Jewish, living in homelands all over the world, many (most?) without any tangible ties to Palestine – want a religion-supremacist “Jewish State” in as much as possible of Palestine.

        Palestinians want self-determination and are entitled to it. Zio-supremacists want colonialism and supremacism and are not entitled to it.

      • ohplease
        ohplease
        June 21, 2016, 1:05 pm

        “Palestinians – the indigenous population of Palestine (incl. refugees and people up to n-generations removed from it) – want a Palestinian state in Palestine”

        Again, the left has this as a nearly untouchable assertion that, in reality, isn’t based on any real empirical evidence, but is simply a story as much as the Jewish diaspora of the last 2000 years is a story.

        “Zio-supremacists – people who happen to be Jewish, living in homelands all over the world, many (most?) without any tangible ties to Palestine”

        This is because you a priori reject the Jewish diaspora narrative, and accept a priori the argument for Palestinian indigeneity, which is your right of course, but is simply a belief. It isn’t akin to Newton’s Universal Law of Gravitation, to wit.

        “want a religion-supremacist “Jewish State” in as much as possible of Palestine. ”

        While the idea of engineering a state based on ethnic/religious majority is an immoral and anachronistic concept by today’s standards, the impulse is at least somewhat understandable by many who would disagree with you, considering how Jews were treated over the last 2 millenia by their hosts, for the “crime” of not accepting the “sequel” religions that “completed” Judaism.

        “Palestinians want self-determination and are entitled to it. Zio-supremacists want colonialism and supremacism and are not entitled to it. ”

        The reality is that many Israelis would be happy with a Palestinian state based on 1967 borders if they would be guaranteed that rockets wouldn’t start flying as soon as Israel pulled out of the West Bank (which of course they would). Their reluctance is reactive to 100+ years of bloodshed, even Pre-State and Pre-Zionism, at the hands of their Arab hosts.

        Note another part of the progressive revisionist fantasy is the idea that “Jews were treated amazing in Arab host countries.”

        In Benny Morris’ opening chapter of Righteous Victims, he notes that the tradition of Palestinian Arab youth hurling stones at old Palestinian Jews predates Zionism. But that’s just hasbara, isn’t it?

      • Mooser
        Mooser
        June 21, 2016, 3:27 pm

        “But why bother with evidence when you can just let your heart bleed for the underdog?”

        I can’t help it. I’m Jewish, you know.

      • Mooser
        Mooser
        June 21, 2016, 6:42 pm

        “The zionist aspirations are no different than Palestinian aspirations to in their narrative reclaim their homeland”

        “Oh Please”, how can you say that?
        The Palestinian’s aspiration can’t be compared with Zionist aspirations at all.
        I mean, all the Palestinians had to do to achieve their aspirations was just stay there, and be left alone.
        Big deal, staying where you are and being what you’ve always been. Feh, like that takes a big effort. Really, should that kind of laziness and backwardness be rewarded? Well, I should say!

        Ah, but Zionists organized organizations, manipulated governments, came from all over the world, reclaimed a whole new identity for the Jewish people to facilitate Zionism, and believed in their aspirations enough to kill and drive away the Palestinians. A huge effort, on which was lavished a tremendous amount of energy and money.

        Pretty obvious who aspires better and harder, and which narrative is true and justified, don’t you think? Indigenous? Ha! The Palestinians made no efforts at all to be indigenous, they were well, just sort of there.

      • eljay
        eljay
        June 21, 2016, 6:59 pm

        || ohplease: Again, the left has this as a nearly untouchable assertion that, in reality, isn’t based on any real empirical evidence, but is simply a story as much as the Jewish diaspora of the last 2000 years is a story. ||

        The geographic region is Palestine; the indigenous population is Palestinian. There has never been a geographic region of “Jewish”.

        || … This is because you a priori reject the Jewish diaspora narrative, and accept a priori the argument for Palestinian indigeneity, which is your right of course, but is simply a belief. … ||

        I believe in gravity; you believe in unicorns.

        || … While the idea of engineering a state based on ethnic/religious majority is an immoral and anachronistic concept by today’s standards, the impulse is at least somewhat understandable by many who would disagree with you, considering how Jews were treated over the last 2 millenia by their hosts … ||

        The just and moral solution to acts of injustice and immorality is justice, accountabilty and equality, universally and consistently applied.

        The just and moral solution to acts of injustice and immorality has never been, is not and never should be the establishment of an oppressive, colonialist, expansionist, (war) criminal and religion-supremacist state.

        || … The reality is that many Israelis would be happy with a Palestinian state based on 1967 borders … ||

        Yes, yes, Zio-supremacist always want “peace”, but they never want – in fact, they absolutely loathe – justice, accountability and equality because it would mean they’d have to give up most of what they’ve stolen and be held accountable for their past and on-going (war) crimes.

        || … Note another part of the progressive revisionist fantasy is the idea that “Jews were treated amazing in Arab host countries.” … ||

        Now you’re really making shit up. I said no such thing, nor do I believe any such thing.

        || … In Benny Morris’ opening chapter of Righteous Victims, he notes that the tradition of Palestinian Arab youth hurling stones at old Palestinian Jews predates Zionism. But that’s just hasbara, isn’t it? ||

        Arabs who throw stones at Jews should be held accountable for their actions. The throwing of stones by Arabs does not entitled Jews to a religion-supremacist state in Palestine.

        Like all Zio-supremacists you believe that:
        – acts of injustice and immorality committed against Jews justify acts of injustice and immorality committed by Jews; and
        – Jews are entitled to do unto others acts of injustice and immorality they would not have others do unto them.

      • ohplease
        ohplease
        June 21, 2016, 10:37 pm

        “I believe in gravity; you believe in unicorns.”

        Wow – very compelling argument. Do you wanna maybe add Q.E.D. to that statement?

        You still are evading the point I was making, either unintentionally or deliberately. Given that the region is a bridge between 3 continents serving many trade routes, has seen many mass population movements, conquest after conquest, how can you actually know/demonstrate in any way that the Canaanites of wayyyy back are linked to the Palestinian Arabs of today?

        There is no real way to quantify indigeneity in such a region that is the opposite of isolated, whereas the concept of indigeneity does make sense in the Americas and Oceania and elsewhere, due to total or near-total isolation.

        As an aside, it’s worth noting that the oldest titles bearing the name Israel and or Judah predate the mention of Palestine by almost a thousand years.

        I mean, there is a plethora of information on the internet about the Jewish connection to that land, if you’re interested in reading about it.

        I’d also be interested in reading a history of the land from a Palestinian perspective, that is empirical as much as history can be rather than ideological.

      • annie
        annie
        June 21, 2016, 11:22 pm

        that is empirical as much as history can be rather than ideological.

        you mean like the “city of david” ideology.

        ever heard of the great book robbery? why do you think they won’t give them back?

      • Mooser
        Mooser
        June 21, 2016, 11:37 pm

        “I believe in gravity; you believe in unicorns.” “eljay”

        You are right, “oh please”, this “eljay” is really off the wall. Look, we all know what a unicorn looks like right, horse with a big central horn. Seen pictures of ’em, seen ’em in movies, many times.

        Has anybody ever seen gravity? How many horns does a gravity have, “eljay”? Does it look like a horse, or a goat?

      • ohplease
        ohplease
        June 22, 2016, 12:11 am

        “you mean like the “city of david” ideology.”

        I would never be one to claim that Zionism is bereft of an enormous amount of ideology. That doesn’t change the Jewish artifacts throughout the land as well as thousands of years of Jewish tradition and lineage, but it is necessary obviously to consider the enormous ideological component of Zionism. I agree with you completely.

        I will have to devote an hour to that film and get back to you. Thank you for the link.

      • annie
        annie
        June 22, 2016, 12:28 am

        i should have been clearer, i meant the place they are digging for under al asqa (they have given this name) which thus far there’s no empirical evidence a city by that name was underneath there.

      • Talkback
        Talkback
        June 22, 2016, 6:49 am

        ohplease: “In Benny Morris’ opening chapter of Righteous Victims, he notes that the tradition of Palestinian Arab youth hurling stones at old Palestinian Jews predates Zionism. But that’s just hasbara, isn’t it?”

        No, that’s not Hasbara, but lying twice in one sentence (ok, it is Hasbara by definition). Morris didn’t write about a “tradition of Palestinian Arab youth”, but about what he claims to have been a “common phenomenon” in the Muslim world in the 19th century while citing a quote from Lewis’ book “The Jews of Islam” who quotes a Western traveller (Beauclerk) who eyewitnessed a Moroccan boy teaching toddlers to throw stones at a Jew.

        You know, the same “tradition” that you would call a “tradition amongst Yesha Jewish youth”.

      • eljay
        eljay
        June 22, 2016, 7:27 am

        || ohplease: … Wow – very compelling argument. … ||

        If you say so.

        || … Do you wanna maybe add Q.E.D. to that statement? … ||

        Why would I want to do that?

        || … You still are evading the point I was making … ||

        You were making a point? Huh.

        || … how can you actually know/demonstrate in any way that the Canaanites of wayyyy back are linked to the Palestinian Arabs of today? … ||

        I don’t have to know/demonstrate that.

        || … As an aside, it’s worth noting that the oldest titles bearing the name Israel and or Judah predate the mention of Palestine by almost a thousand years. I mean, there is a plethora of information on the internet about the Jewish connection to that land … ||

        So what? There’s a plethora of information about the connection of many ancient tribes / peoples / nations / floor waxes to many pieces of land. None of that information is an entitlement to any form of supremacism in the 21st Century.

      • eljay
        eljay
        June 22, 2016, 7:30 am

        || Mooser: … You are right, “oh please”, this “eljay” is really off the wall. Look, we all know what a unicorn looks like right, horse with a big central horn. Seen pictures of ’em, seen ’em in movies, many times. Has anybody ever seen gravity? How many horns does a gravity have, “eljay”? Does it look like a horse, or a goat? ||

        Gravity is warm blanket. Or maybe that was happiness. I don’t know. But I do know someone who does: The Logician. :-)

      • Mooser
        Mooser
        June 22, 2016, 1:10 pm

        “Gravity is warm blanket. Or maybe that was happiness”

        No, no, as Charlie Brown said: “Happiness is a warm puppy, that is peeing in somebody elses arms.”

        I wonder if gravity is responsible for that heavy feeling I get after large meals?

      • Emory Riddle
        Emory Riddle
        June 22, 2016, 1:32 pm

        A 2,000 year old land claim!

        Even if you were to believe that these white folks from Europe left the ME 2,000 years ago (almost certainly not true), to assert this gives them the right to “return” and drive off the land (quite violently I might add) the people who have in fact been living there for as long as anyone can tell is, for lack of a better description, completely nuts.

        Throw in the fact that even in the myth, Jews took the land from someone else and then held it for a quite short period of time, and we see the phrase completely nuts is insufficient to describe the level of delusion required to believe the Ashkenazi are entitled to Palestine.

      • JWalters
        JWalters
        June 22, 2016, 6:35 pm

        ohplease,

        You said [the Palestinian narrative]

        “is simply a story as much as the Jewish diaspora of the last 2000 years is a story.”

        and

        “you a priori reject the Jewish diaspora narrative”

        I know as an absolute fact that in my case I have rejected the Jewish diaspora narrative after careful study of the facts and narratives. I personally have no attachment to either narrative, so my assessment is based on evidence and logic. And it is clear to me that most of the commenters here who reject the Zionist claims also do so based on facts, reason, and a modern standard of universal human rights and justice.

        For some facts about the inhabitants of Palestine going back to 7000 BCE, see Misterioso’s post below.

        You further said,

        “While the idea of engineering a state based on ethnic/religious majority is an immoral and anachronistic concept by today’s standards, the impulse is at least somewhat understandable by many who would disagree with you, considering how Jews were treated over the last 2 millenia by their hosts, for the “crime” of not accepting the “sequel” religions that “completed” Judaism.”

        Here’s an alternative possibility. The Israelis’ arrogant presumption of an inherent superiority, which they demonstrate today in massive injustices, will inevitably anger any group they kill, rob, swindle, or otherwise subject to injustice. Since this attitude of inherent superiority is a core feature in the Torah, it’s a reasonable estimate that many Jews through history have believed and behaved this way. If so, that would be a factor in their relationships with neighboring non-Jewish groups.

        My question to you –

        Do you believe the Zionist narrative is legitimate because the Torah says God granted the land of Palestine to Jews in perpetuity?

      • Mooser
        Mooser
        June 22, 2016, 7:54 pm

        “While the idea of engineering a state based on ethnic/religious majority is an immoral and anachronistic concept by today’s standards…”

        …it can be achieved with enough brute force, and amoral power, resources and a willingness to gamble with lives. Everybody knows that. And you can’t give a husky f–k what people think of it or say about it! Just gotta do it! Make the facts on the ground!

        ” the impulse is at least somewhat understandable by many who would disagree with you, considering how Jews were treated over the last 2 millenia by their hosts, for the “crime” of not accepting the “sequel” religions that “completed” Judaism”

        Ah, so Zionism should get all that (” engineering a state based on ethnic/religious majority…an immoral and anachronistic concept”) because non-Jews feel sorry for our religious difficulties and know we are too weak to do it ourselves?

        Uhh, there’s a slight fault there, “oh please”. Wouldn’t people with the perceptiveness and compassion too feel sorry for the Jews, maybe (look, I know it’s crazy, but hear me out!) feel the same about dispossessing and murdering the Palestinians?
        Do you really think you can count on a mortal bigotry against Palestinians from the same people who have compassion for Jews? Just by projecting it on them?

      • Mooser
        Mooser
        June 22, 2016, 11:30 pm

        “because non-Jews feel sorry for…”

        Look at that! I said “non-Jews” instead of Gentiles, without even thinking about it. I am really coming along.

        Oh no, I just remembered, we’re taking the dog for a run tomorrow at a local cemetery. Another challenge.

      • annie
        annie
        June 23, 2016, 1:00 am

        it’s s easy once you get the hang of it!

      • eljay
        eljay
        June 23, 2016, 7:19 am

        || Mooser: … I wonder if gravity is responsible for that heavy feeling I get after large meals? ||

        I think an excess of gravyty is to blame. :-)

      • Mooser
        Mooser
        June 23, 2016, 11:17 pm

        “it’s s easy once you get the hang of it!”

        I shouldn’t really have to expectorate much from myself to meet the cemetery test.

        “An excess of gravyty…”

        Not to mention all the food stored between my teeth for later consumption. That’s gotta weigh something.

    • ohplease
      ohplease
      June 21, 2016, 10:11 am

      Wow props to the mods usually the indigenous narrative is untouchable I’m frankly surprised they let this post fly. Of course that narrative doesn’t hold much empirical water to begin with but hey it fits the progressive agenda so what the hell. I mean if a Jew looks white the Jew must be a convert from Europe. It’s not as if Africans get any lighter skinned when they intermarry in their diaspora, right?

      • Mooser
        Mooser
        June 21, 2016, 3:28 pm

        “It’s not as if Africans get any lighter skinned when they intermarry in their diaspora, right?”

        And the children are usually even darker?

      • Mooser
        Mooser
        June 21, 2016, 4:47 pm

        “I’m frankly surprised they let this post fly.”

        Oh, no doubt the Mods were trembling when they clicked “publish”, and ready to write off the entire place as soon as your comment enlightened Mondo’s readers to the essential duplicity of the site, but they’re in a trap of their own making!
        They can’t delete you without being obvious free-speech hypocrites.
        They probably thought nobody would dare expose them.

      • WH
        WH
        June 22, 2016, 7:11 am

        The whole discussion about indigeneity going back millennia is perhaps interesting, but ethically irrelevant; the Zionists expelled and murdered people who had been born there and had demonstrably lived there for several generations. It makes no difference whether their ancestors went back three thousand years; they were born there and lived there. That’s all that matters to establish that what was done to them was a major crime.

      • Talkback
        Talkback
        June 22, 2016, 8:26 am

        ohplease: “I mean if a Jew looks white the Jew must be a convert from Europe.”

        Oh, please! I mean if a Jew looks white the Jew must be a descendant from Isaac, right?

        The relevant legal question is who became ipso facto a citizen of Palestine in 1925, because he or she was an Ottoman citizen habitually residing in this area. David Grün certainly not, because this tourist illegaly overstayed while his Visa ran out. Isn’t it telling that he proclaimed the establishment of the State of Israel?

      • MHughes976
        MHughes976
        June 23, 2016, 2:48 pm

        You’re right, WH, to say that contemporary rights don’t flow from ancient history, but I’d like to mention that the gap between the first generally accepted mention of a political entity called Israel, the Merneptah Stela of which we never hear the last, and the first generally accepted mention of Palestinians/Philistines, the Ramesses record of the Sea Peoples, is not 1,000 but about 30 years, 1205:1175 BCE approx..
        Beyond Merneptah there are 3 (!) inscriptions from before the Hellenistic period mentioning Israel by name, all from around the time of the great dynast Ahab c.850, one of which seems also to mention Judah under the name ‘House of David’. After that there are, from about 840 – 720, about 12 references (depending on how you count repeated references in related texts) to the Kingdom of Samaria or (preferred name) Omria or to ‘Jehu son of Omri’ as personification of Omria. Mainly after 720 the references to Judah begin – there are about 10 of these.
        Palestine/Land of the Philistines occurs in 3 Assyrian inscriptions ffom around 800 to 670, but also plenty of reference to Philistine mini-states like Gaza. This may seem meagre, but it’s interesting to see in the Esarhaddon Treaty with Tyre (J.B. Pritchard, Ancient Near East, p.213) the reference to ‘the entire district of the Philistines’ as if it was a fairly large area, somewhat reminiscent of Isaiah 14:29 ‘whole of Palestine’. But the Palestinians must have been more significant than one might think from this number of records. It was they who were to give their name to the territory for international purposes, as we see from Herodotus and Aristotle.
        I disagree with the appropriation of ancient, as of modern, Palestine.

    • Misterioso
      Misterioso
      June 21, 2016, 2:45 pm

      “[I] read somewhere that yasser arafat was Egyptian.”

      Yasser Arafat was born in Cairo, but he was not an Egyptian. His merchant father, who was from Khan Yunis in the Gaza Strip first relocated to Jerusalem, and then, for business reasons, he and his wife took up temporary residence in Cairo where his son, Muhammed Abdul Rauf Arafat al Qudwa, nicknamed Yasser (lit, “carefree”) was born. Children born to parents working abroad is hardly unusual. Arafat was a Palestinian.

      Archaeological evidence found at ancient sites such as Jericho, founded by the Natufians, indicates that communities well advanced in agriculture as well as arts and crafts were thriving in Palestine as far back as 7000 BCE. These first settlers were joined by migrants from the Arabian Peninsula around 3500 BCE, (John Quigley, Palestine and Israel: A Challenge to Justice, Duke University Press, Durham and London, 1990, p. 68) and the region’s inhabitants subsequently became known as Canaanites. (The Hebrews invaded circa 1184 BCE.)

      To quote the renowned historian/anthropologist and “Holy Land” specialist, Professor Ilene Beatty: “When we speak of ‘Palestinians’ or of the ‘Arab population [of Palestine]‘, we must bear in mind their Canaanite origin. This is important because their legal right to the country stems…from the fact that the Canaanites were first, which gives them priority; their descendants have continued to live there, which gives them continuity; and (except for the 800,000 dispossessed refugees [of 1948, along with the further hundreds of thousands expelled before and after the war Israel launched on 5 June 1967]) they are still living there, which gives them present possession. Thus we see that on purely statistical grounds they have a proven legal right to their own land.” (“Arab and Jew in the Land of Canaan,” 1957)

      • Talkback
        Talkback
        June 22, 2016, 8:28 am

        “(With reference to Palestinians in Ottoman times) Although proud of their Arab heritage and ancestry, the Palestinians considered themselves to be descended not only from Arab conquerors of the seventh century but also from indigenous peoples who had lived in the country since time immemorial, including the ancient Hebrews and the Canaanites before them. Acutely aware of the distinctiveness of Palestinian history, the Palestinians saw themselves as the heirs of its rich associations.” Walid Khalidi, 1984, Before Their Diaspora: A Photographic History of the Palestinians, 1876–1948. Institute for Palestine Studies
        https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Promised_Land#cite_note-Khalidi-1

      • JWalters
        JWalters
        June 22, 2016, 6:43 pm

        Misterioso and Talkback,

        Thanks for the history of Palestine’s inhabitants going back to 7000 BCE. This puts things in perspective. The ancient kingdom of Israel was evidently a short-lived, pipsqueak kingdom.

        The on-going land thefts around Jerusalem are blatant, bigotry-based crimes sanctioned by the government. How can the world stand by and watch this happen? How can America honor and support such a government?

        The Israelis have been swindling America, including American Jews, from the start.

  5. mcohen.
    mcohen.
    June 21, 2016, 1:11 am

    so those jews who minted the coins in 66 ad with the words “in defence of zion” on them were neither zionists nor jews.nor were they indigenous.

    mooser was jesus christ an indigenous jew ?

    that is the million dollar question

    do you want me to go on

    • Talkback
      Talkback
      June 21, 2016, 4:48 am

      mcohen: “so those jews who minted the coins in 66 ad with the words “in defence of zion” on them were neither zionists nor jews.nor were they indigenous”

      Mooser is wrong. It seems to be hard for someone like you to think “real hard” and figure it out.

      THOSE Jews were indigenous but not Zionists, because Zionism is about RE-establishing Jewish rule in Palestine.

      But what do THOSE Jews have to do with Jews who “came from other places. Mostly Europe, some Russia some America.”as Mooser put it?

      “was jesus christ an indigenous jew ?”

      Of course.

      “do you want me to go on”

      Only if you promise that you think at all, before you write.

      • Mooser
        Mooser
        June 21, 2016, 5:02 am

        “Mooser is wrong. “

        Call me a cock-eyed optimist, I really hoped he might get it. Oh well, wrong again.

      • ohplease
        ohplease
        June 21, 2016, 1:12 pm

        “But what do THOSE Jews have to do with Jews who “came from other places. Mostly Europe, some Russia some America.”as Mooser put it?”

        This question is based on your a priori rejection of the Jewish diaspora narrative and your a priori acceptance of the Palestinian indigeneity narrative.

        It’s your choice and your belief, it’s not E=mc^2

      • Mooser
        Mooser
        June 21, 2016, 4:15 pm

        “It’s your choice and your belief…”

        Gosh, whom shall I believe? “Oh please” or my 63-year old lying Jewish eyes? How did I manage to get such a false impression of Zionism?
        And why should I reject Zionism when I have so much to gain from its success? And its failure, or even moderation, will strip me of my rights, not to mention my Jewish pride.
        I guess I must be one of those self-haters which plague Judaism and Jewishness.
        Oh, how I will regret rejecting Zionism one day, soon, and for the rest of my life!

      • echinococcus
        echinococcus
        June 21, 2016, 5:33 pm

        Oh, please! Looks like there’s a live one.
        Never heard of records? History? Population registries? Land registries? Newspaper reports?
        “Narrative”, indeed!
        Are you one of those “We’re an empire now, and when we act, we create our own reality. And while you’re studying that reality—judiciously, as you will—we’ll act again…”

      • Talkback
        Talkback
        June 22, 2016, 6:00 am

        ohplease: “This question is based on your a priori rejection of the Jewish diaspora narrative and your a priori acceptance of the Palestinian indigeneity narrative.

        It’s your choice and your belief, it’s not E=mc^2”

        Nope. My “narrative” is not even based on religion/heritage, but on the FACT, that someone ipso facto aquired Palestinan citizenship in 1925, because he or she was an Ottoman citizen who habitually lived in the area which became Palestine.

        Your narrative is based on the believe that 1.) a Jew is ipso facto a descendent of a Jew who lived in Palestine thousands of years ago like there was no proselyitism/conversion at all and 2.) this is more important than being a Palestinian citizen in 1925.

    • Mooser
      Mooser
      June 21, 2016, 5:03 am

      “so those jews who minted the coins in 66 ad”

      Lived in Palestine.

      “was jesus christ an indigenous jew ?”

      The fact that Jesus Christ was a Jew gives the Zionists rights to Palestine? Oh you should definitely pursue that line, you’ll get far.

      “do you want me to go on”

      Please, Mondo needs the “hits”
      Just be sure to use the scruffee before you go back indoors. But right now, “mcohen” you’re outstanding in your field.

      • mcohen.
        mcohen.
        June 21, 2016, 6:16 am

        mooser said

        “mondo needs the hits”

        cheer up mooser my “hasbara contract” ends june 30.

        i am moving over to 4chan,the /pol section,my favourite for entertainment.however /k section is also good.

        what are you whining about anyway.obama and his good friend netanyahu are door revolving soon,i am sure clinton and herzog will satisfy your deepest desires.

      • Mooser
        Mooser
        June 21, 2016, 11:41 pm

        “cheer up mooser my “hasbara contract” ends june 30.”

        Yeah, June is a big month for you, from the “first week in June” till your Hasbara contract ends June 30th. See ya.

      • Talkback
        Talkback
        June 22, 2016, 8:34 am

        mcohen: “cheer up mooser my “hasbara contract” ends june 30”

        Expelled from University, because you, too, couldn’t prove the “exile” of Jews?

        Israel: Government pays students to fight internet battles
        http://www.bbc.com/news/blogs-news-from-elsewhere-23695896

    • Mooser
      Mooser
      June 21, 2016, 4:18 pm

      “do you want me to go on”

      Please. I’d sure like to know what Jesus had to do with it.

      • Talkback
        Talkback
        June 22, 2016, 6:04 am

        “If you can’t convince them, confuse them.” – Harry Truman

      • mcohen.
        mcohen.
        June 22, 2016, 6:57 am

        Mooser says

        “First week in june”

        June is not over yet.

      • Mooser
        Mooser
        June 22, 2016, 1:02 pm

        “June is not over yet.”

        Why, “mcohen”? You planning on being victorious in an eight-day war?

        It’s only about 8 days til the 30th, as you say, and then we will be rid of you, as your “hasbara contract” is up. I can certainly patiently wait a few days for something so nice.

  6. WH
    WH
    June 21, 2016, 4:14 am

    “It is estimated that one in three refugees globally is Palestinian”

    I think this is a problematic statistic, or at least one that needs unpacking. Palestinians inherit refugee status because they can’t return, but there’s a difference between children of expelled Palestinians growing up in stable conditions in the US, say, and Syrians fleeing from civil war. Palestinian-Americans are US citizens, not stateless like their parents or grandparents.

    • Eva Smagacz
      Eva Smagacz
      June 21, 2016, 7:13 am

      Palestinians in America are a tiny fraction of the population of displaced Palestinians.
      Most of Palestinians who were displaced did not get absorbed into the countries where their refugee camps are.
      If you want a motivation for this, read today’s reaction of countries receiving refugee about absorbing large populations with different language, culture and religion into their mist.
      In addition, ANY Arab country that would absorb Palestinian population would, in reality, help and bear expense of the Jewish Israeli Supremacist project of ethnic cleansing.

      • mcohen.
        mcohen.
        June 21, 2016, 7:36 am

        eva

        how many “tiny fraction” are there.

        how many 1947 palestinians are there in the diaspora.

        what abouth those jews that left arab countries,how many where there

        how many arabs stayed in israel after 1948.

        eva so please tell me the number of mosques that exist in israel,some say that it is over 400,that does not include learning institutions

        1.4 million arabs,400 mosques
        that is a ratio of 1:3500

        that is what i call a jewish israeli supremacist project

      • WH
        WH
        June 21, 2016, 11:25 am

        Here are the diaspora statistics (the ones on Syria are no longer valid, I suppose): https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Palestinian_diaspora
        Very interesting – half a million in Chile!
        Anyway, I wasn’t talking about being absorbed into the countries of refugee camps, but into entirely different populations.

    • Mooser
      Mooser
      June 22, 2016, 1:05 pm

      “Palestinians inherit refugee status because they can’t return, but there’s a difference between children of expelled Palestinians growing up in stable conditions in the US, say, and Syrians fleeing from civil war.”

      Yup, maybe it’s like the difference between the 300,00- or so displaced Jewish persons after WW2, and an Jewish American getting citizenship and residence in Israel . Know what I mean?

  7. ritzl
    ritzl
    June 21, 2016, 6:02 pm

    Love your writing, Ms Elia. You have a gift for giving substance to somewhat ethereal concepts.

  8. Boris
    Boris
    June 22, 2016, 12:45 am

    Palestinians are as indigenous to Palestine as Americans are indigenous to America.

    Jews are the Cherokees of the Middle East. The only difference is that we were able to come back to our native lands.

    • mcohen.
      mcohen.
      June 22, 2016, 8:59 pm

      boris

      well put.but i think i have finally worked out what truly upsets american liberal jews

      that there 1950,s zionist dream or illusion of israel as per bible classes got stolen from them by all those moldovians and ethiopians and russians and transylvanian transvestites and.
      the jews of seinfeld got upped by the soup/zion nazi’s
      p weiss and m lerner wanted nice with the natives and now it pains them to think that all there hard earned jnf donations are being used for nefarious ning nongs

      • Mooser
        Mooser
        June 23, 2016, 5:13 pm

        “the soup/zion nazi’s p weiss and m lerner wanted nice with the natives and now it pains them to think that all there hard earned jnf donations are being used for nefarious ning nongs .”

        With this kind of intellect, rhetoric, and moral courage on their (t-h-e-i-r) side, I’m becoming convinced my anti-zionism is a pretty futile position.
        Well, in 7 days, Hasbara will be bereft one of its star dispensers. If I can hold out til June 30, “mcohen” will be gone. He said so!

    • Mooser
      Mooser
      June 22, 2016, 11:10 pm

      “Jews are the Cherokees of the Middle East. The only difference is that we were able to come back to our native lands.”

      C’,mon Boris, damn, I was drinking iced tea when I read that. Now it’s all over the screen. And I nearly choked. I’m e-mailing the Moderators. Another comedic assault, a violation of the comment policy!

    • Mooser
      Mooser
      June 22, 2016, 11:14 pm

      “Palestinians are as indigenous to Palestine as Americans are indigenous to America.”

      Well then, I guess you Zionists are in a world of hurt.
      So Palestinians are like Americans, true, and that makes the Zionists well, true illegal aliens.
      The Zionists might want to think about applying for citizenship.

  9. mcohen.
    mcohen.
    June 22, 2016, 6:00 pm

    mooser.soccer ….

    uefa

    june 25 is wales vs ireland in paris.i bet 2 -1 wales wins.
    june 27 is italy vs spain in paris i bet 1-1 draw
    june 30 the qfinals in Marseille…..who is it mooser.

    which teams will play Marseille
    because from here the winner will be launched

    you can bet on it…moooooooooser

    i bet annie is rooting for ireland

  10. Mooser
    Mooser
    June 22, 2016, 11:07 pm

    …soccer ….

    Such comforting thoughts. June 30th is only a few days away, and “mcohen” never lies.

  11. Elisabeth
    Elisabeth
    June 23, 2016, 3:35 am

    I read the comments by ‘oh please’ with amusement, and with a strong feeling of recognition. A commenter named ‘Yehuda’ tried to sell exactly this kind of “there is no truth, only narratives” & “progressives buy into the Palestinian narrative” stuff for a long time.
    In a way it is revealing: If you are devoted to defending the indefensible, of course you have to disqualify facts.

  12. mcohen.
    mcohen.
    June 24, 2016, 2:06 am

    mooser

    june is on fire.the eu just went cheech and chong

    boris for president

    this kind of “intellect”

    • Mooser
      Mooser
      June 24, 2016, 2:24 pm

      “this kind of “intellect”

      “mcohen”, it’s not the same without the long ellipses.
      They added a secretive and insinuating texture, almost like gasping out last words. Or as if the stuff is too inflammatory or secret for full articulation. Bring them back!
      Or at least use “nod-nod, wink-wink” or something.

      • mcohen.
        mcohen.
        June 24, 2016, 10:19 pm

        mooser says

        “it’s not the same without the long ellipses.”

        i know but when you are rushed for time you hope the blanks can fill in the spaces themselves.i see you love the little dribble at the end…………….don,t make it a habit……it spoils the 75+ thread

  13. silamcuz
    silamcuz
    June 24, 2016, 3:27 am

    I like this idea of having a metaphorical rent that we all owe in some extent to justify our existence on this Earth, because it introduces a meritocratic element to our lives and that gives me solace.

    It’s true we all have a rent to pay for our existence, not only in North America but pretty much anywhere on Earth. There are many who refuse to accept this reality, those who believe they are owed a good life of plenty, like the Zionists of Israel or the Whites of America. These folks tried to bypass a fundamental natural law by embracing criminality and deceit, and living a life in denial of their debt to this world. But as their unpaid rent grows greater and greater, we can see how their lives starting to unravel, their societies starting to crack under the weight of reality, the men turning violent on themselves and their loved ones, the women growing spiteful of their husbands and sons.

    No race of humans are exempt from paying rent to live, not Palestinians, not Israelis, not White Americans. The problem is, Palestinians for the most part accept and submit themselves to this fact, but Whites and Israelis are still stuck in their delusions of superiority and entitlement, making life difficult for the rest of the rent-paying folks that shares their dwelling on the land.

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