Thursday, July 30, 2009

The Nakba as punishment

Alan Dershowitz:

"If [the Holocaust] is a reality, we need to still question whether the Palestinian people should be paying for it or not. After all, it happened in Europe. The Palestinian people had no role to play in it. So why is it that the Palestinian people are paying the price of an event they had nothing to do with? ...The Palestinian people didn't commit any crime. They had no role to play in World War II. They were living with the Jewish communities and the Christian communities in peace at the time."

The conclusion that is supposed to follow from this "fact" is that the establishment of Israel in the wake of the Nazi genocide of the Jewish people was unfair to the Palestinians. Central to this claim is that neither the Palestinian people nor their leadership bore any responsibility for the Holocaust, and if any reparations are owed the Jewish people, it is from Germany and not from the Palestinians. The propounders of this historical argument suggest that the West created the Jewish state out of guilt over the Holocaust. It might have been understandable if a portion of Germany (or Poland, Lithuania, Latvia, France, Austria, or other collaborator nations) had been allocated for a Jewish homeland - but why Palestine? Palestine, according to this claim, was as much a "victim" as were the Jews.

I hear this argument on university campuses around the United States, and even more so in Europe.

The truth is that the Palestinian leadership, supported by the Palestinian masses, played a significant role in Hitler's Holocaust.