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One Democratic Secular State for all its citizens in Israel and Palestine

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Posted August 19, 2010 at 1:46 pm

Q: Isn’t it easier to return to the 1967 Borders?

The occupation has lasted so long that most people, even in the solidarity movement, think that before 1967 there was a Palestinian state on at least the West Bank and maybe Gaza too. In fact Gaza was run by Egypt, and the West Bank had been donated to Jordan by Zionist leader Golda Meir. No-one asked the Palestinians what they wanted. Before 1948 Palestine was ruled by Britain, and before that the Turks owned it.

This border, wholesomely named the Green Line, was simply where the fighting stopped in mid-May 1948. Many people who fled went only a few miles away but were never to this day allowed to go back. Others fled from one place to another within what became Israel, and were classified as “present absentees”, and also denied the right to return to their original homes.

Unlike Belgium’s French and Flemish areas, or Czechoslovakia’s Czech and Slovakian areas, etc, there had never been an Israeli and a Palestinian area that could be, or even that wished to be, separated into two states. Neither group was ever asking for self government in its own space. Many of the inhabitants of the West Bank and Gaza were refugees from main Jerusalem and the coastal towns of Jaffa, Acre, Haifa driven out  in a systematic and well planned campaign of ethnic clearance backed by terror. Others ended up in Lebanon, Syria, and Jordan. So giving the family of refugees from Acre a state 50 miles to the south in the camps of Gaza is not a just or a natural solution.

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