Salman Abu Sitta
Middle East Monitor / April 30, 2023
On 29 April 2023
You made a speech this week praising the establishment of Israel on its 75th anniversary.
For someone in your position, it is surprising that it had so many errors of fact, misguided judgment, violation of international law, and deviation from basic norms of justice.
You congratulated Israel on 75 years of existence on a land area of 20,500 km2, which is 78% of Palestine. Not one square kilometer of this area is obtained by any legal or just means. Six percent was obtained through the treacherous British collusion and 72% by military conquest. How could you congratulate a regime which obtained this land by spilling the blood of the innocent?
Israel has no boundaries, neither by international law nor by its own admission. The Armistice Agreement of 1949 confers no legal title on any boundary. Which Israel are you congratulating? Is it in the land occupied by Israel in 1948, or in 1967?
There is not a single line in UN resolutions that supports you in either.
You congratulate Israel on its “dynamism ingenuity and groundbreaking innovations”.
I ask you if you gather the best German scientists and locate them on Madagascar Island, where they killed the people of the island and set up the best laboratory. Would you consider that a scientific achievement?
Einstein did not discover the Theory of Relativity because he was a Jew or a Swiss; he discovered it because he was a brilliant scientist. To his credit, he refused the idea of Israel and condemned the Jewish massacre of Deir Yassin.
Your European government poured billions of Euros into Israel for “scientific research” under the EU-Israel Association. The agreement contained a clause requiring Israel to abide by Human Rights in the conduct of research. But you, in particular Germany and Holland, waived this clause on demand by Israel.
Your Israel did not waste time. Its arms industry company Elbit sold weapons of mass destruction to many countries, spreading death and destruction in many parts of the world.
The prime victim is our people in Gaza. In four Israel wars against Gaza in the last six years, not only Elbit products were used to kill women and children, but its operators were in the field to guide the Israeli soldiers.
People of good conscience in the UK protested against that and demonstrated against Elbit factory in England. Similar people in Germany protested against Elbit but your government jailed them.
Is this the Israeli science you celebrate?
You say also “Israel made the desert bloom”. You fell into the trap of Israeli propaganda. With your government capabilities, you could have done a better job.
The area of the southern district is 12,500 km2. Israel irrigated at best 800 km2. The remaining 94% was and is still desert. The irony is that the irrigation water is stolen water from the West Bank and Golan Heights. All the stolen water used in agriculture produces only 1.5% of Israel GDP.
Making “the desert bloom” is a myth. How can this escape you?
You paid for your guilt about atrocities against your Jewish citizens with Palestinian blood. Your leaders flocked to Yad Vashim, erected in Palestine not in Germany, to shed tears and ask for forgiveness. But none of your leaders had the moral courage to look at the opposite hill, 3 km away, at Deir Yassin and confront your hosts, the criminals who committed the massacre there.
You paid no notice or care about the Israeli-run concentration camps and forced labour camps for captured Palestinian civilians in 1948, set up by your citizens who fled to Palestine, only three years after those camps were closed in Germany, even though they were reported by ICRC.
The major defect in your speech is that you did not see the elephant in the room. You did not see or recognize Al-Nakba, the worst disaster in Palestine’s 4000 years of history.
You did not mention the Zionist invasion by 120,000 European soldiers in 9 brigades carrying out 31 military operations. This invasion depopulated 560 towns and villages through massacres, making refugees of two-thirds of the Palestinian people.
How can you escape this calamity? Do you not know Palestine?
Go back to maps in the mid-19th century by your geographers Kiepert and Van de Velde. They tell you about 1200 localities in Palestine. You are a fluent French speaker. Go to seven volumes of Victor Guerin describing every village in Palestine.
If you miss all that, you cannot miss the historical visit of Kaiser Wilhelm II of Germany to Palestinian Jerusalem on 31st October 1898. You cannot miss the voluminous scholarly work of Gustav Dalman about Palestine’s people.
With this knowledge, it is very sad, and indicative of the Western racism, that you voted frequently against Palestinian Inalienable rights in the United Nations, invoking the sordid European history of colonialism.
But it is not too late. You can retract your words and actions and come back to the true path, peace, and justice for Palestinians. They are the true heirs of Jesus Christ, after whom your political party was named.
Dr Salman Abu Sitta
Salman Abu Sitta is a Palestinian researcher; he writes about Palestinian refugees and the Palestinian right of return