The Land Speaks Arabic

Holy Land Studies: A Multidisciplinary Journal
Volume 7, Number 2, November 2008

Documentary Film Reviews
THE LAND SPEAKS ARABIC
Reviewed by Prof. Mazin Qumsiyeh

‘La Terre Parle Arab’ (2007). Director Maryse Gargour. Arabic, French, English audio with English subtitles, 61 minutes. Winner of several European awards (ASBU, Prix France 3 Medirerranee, Prix Memoire du Medirerranee).

This excellent documentary on one of the most pressing issues of our time brings
together rarely seen footage of Palestine before 1948 juxtaposed with historical research, eyewitness accounts, stunning choreography, moving testimonials, and historical documents.

We can state the fact that before the Zionist project began in Palestine it was more heavily populated than the United States of today. We can state that Palestine 20 years or even fifty years after the Zionist project was launched was still predominantly Arab. But it is one thing to state a fact and another to have seen it or lived it. The next best thing is to have a film that shows you a video of the era and pictures of the documents of the era. That is what this film does in a very professional, practical, and effective way. Continue reading

The Green Light for Zionism’s Ethnic Cleansing of Palestine. By Alan Hart

Via: Alan Hart.

Deir-Yassin

I find myself wondering how many of our present day leaders, President Obama in particular, are aware of what happened in Palestine that became Israel on 10 March 65 years ago today.

On that day in 1948, two months before Israel’s unilateral declaration of independence in defiance of the will of the organized international community as it then was at the UN, Zionism’s in-Palestine political and military leaders met in Tel Aviv to formally adopt PLAN DALET, the blueprint with operational military orders for the ethnic cleansing of Palestine.

They did not and never would refer to the crime they authorised as ethnic cleansing. Their euphemism for it was “transfer”.

As noted in an excellent anniversary briefing paper by IMEU (the American-founded Institute for Middle East Understanding), from the earliest days of modern political Zionism its advocates grappled with the problem of creating a Jewish majority state in a part of the world where Palestinian Arabs were the overwhelming majority of the population.

The earliest insider information we have on Zionism’s thinking is from the diary of Theodor Herzl, the founding father of Zionism’s colonial-like enterprise. He wrote:

“We shall try to spirit the penniless population across the border by procuring employment for it in the transit countries, while denying it any employment in our own country… expropriation and the removal of the poor must be carried out discreetly and circumspectly.”

Those words were committed to paper by Herzl in 1895 but they were not published (in other words they were suppressed) until 1962. Continue reading

Land Day: Celebrate Resistance and Intensify BDS

Art by Naji al-Ali

On March 30, Palestinians will commemorate Land day, a day in 1976 when Israeli Occupation forces shot and killed six young Palestinian “citizens” of the Israeli apartheid state. These brave youth were among thousands protesting the Israeli occupation state’s expropriation of Palestinian land. Today, we continue to celebrate Palestinian resistance to the ongoing land expropriation, colonization, occupation and apartheid.

Thirty-seven years after the first Land Day demonstrations, the Israeli occupation state continues its expropriation and colonization of Palestinian land. It continues to expand its illegal colonial settlements in West Bank, occupied Palestine, forcing Palestinians from their land. Palestinians also face dispossession and displacement inside the Israeli apartheid in the 1948 occupied Palestine.

For international supporters of the Palestinian struggle for freedom, justice and equality, Land Day is an opportunity to develop campaigns for boycotts, divestment and sanctions (BDS) against the Israeli apartheid, particularly campaigns targeting the Jewish National Fund (JNF), agribusinesses and companies operating in illegal colonial settlements, all of which play a vital role in the continued theft of Palestinian land, resources and properties.

The Palestinian Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions National Committee (BNC) invites people of conscience across the world to join us in marking Land Day by highlighting BDS as an effective form of solidarity with the Palestinian struggle.

At a time when the Israeli occupation state is facing unprecedented levels of pressure over its continued colonization of Palestinian land and quickly losing the international support upon which it depends, let us work together to intensify our collective efforts to hold the Israeli apartheid regime and its supporters accountable.

BDS National Committee

If you are planning BDS activities to mark Land Day, please send in the details to info@BDSmovement.net

* This is an edited version of the BNC‘s statement. See the original here.

** See also the Land Day’s posters on The Palestine Poster Project Archives.

Land Day

Stop the JNF: Stop Greenwashing Apartheid

The exodus from Haifa Wikimedia Commons

The exodus from Haifa Wikimedia Commons

Via: Stop the JNF.

United Against Apartheid, Colonialism and Occupation, Dignity & Justice for the Palestinian People

Call for an international campaign to Stop the Jewish National Fund

The Jewish National Fund (JNF)[1] was instrumental in the ethnic cleansing[2] of Palestine in the 1948 Nakba, and continues to play a central role in maintaining Israel’s regime of apartheid.[3] The JNF provided political, financial and intelligence[4] support for the Zionist forces in their conquest, massacres and ethnic cleansing operations that characterized the 1948-49 war and the Palestinian Nakba. Today, the JNF controls vast properties belonging to millions of Palestinians, developing them exclusively for persons of “Jewish nationality,” a concept established and promoted in the JNF’s charter to exclude all others.

The JNF was created in 1901 to acquire land and property rights in Palestine and beyond for exclusive Jewish settlement. While indigenous Palestinians are barred from leasing[5], building on, managing or working their own land, the JNF holds the land in trust for “those of Jewish race or descendency” living anywhere in the world to “promote the interests of Jews in the prescribed region.”[6]

To ensure such racist control over the majority of confiscated Palestinian lands, Israel adopted the JNF model of discriminatory land management as official state policy. In 1953, the Israeli Knesset legislated special status for JNF, enabling it to carry out governmental functions as a Zionist institution (“for Jews only”). The JNF continues to operate as a state-chartered organization[7] under Israeli law with direct control over some thirteen percent of the land in pre-1967 Israel. Further, the JNF appoints six out of thirteen members of the governing board of the Israel Lands Authority (ILA), which manages the JNF’s thirteen percent, in addition to another eighty percent of all land in Israel. It is through this relationship with the JNF that Israel, while portraying itself as the only democracy in the Middle East, in fact, outsources the land-management functions of the state to this discriminatory state-chartered organization. Continue reading

E-book on Jewish National Fund’s role in colonization of Palestine released


Via: Electronic Intifada.
The Scottish Palestine Solidarity Campaign has published an e-book on the Jewish National Fund (JNF) that meets a need for an affordable introduction to the activities of the JNF, an organization supported financially by the British taxpayer but whose activities in Israel/ Palestine are politically-driven, and whose politics are nakedly racist. This little book reveals how a British charity works openly for the dispossession of Palestinian Arabs and the establishment of fully segregated Jewish-only communities and areas that exclude Arabs.
The book explains why, when the JNF Committee sought legal advice from England in 1905 as to the possibility of registering as a charity, their legal advisors were unanimous that it would be impossible:
“We therefore conclude that the purpose of the Fund will be a political rather than a charitable one and that limiting the Fund’s use to strictly charitable purposes would run counter to the main purpose of the Fund …”
The JNF initially failed to secure charitable status, being refused by the House of Lords in 1932, but it now enjoys charitable status for activities that would be illegal if carried out in the countries where it raises the funds, including the UK where the JNF enjoys the patronage of Prime Minister Gordon Brown and the leaders of the other two main political parties.

Edited by Mortaza Sahibzada, JNF: Colonising Palestine since 1901 is available for download from the Scottish Palestine Solidarity Campaign. Continue reading