The Catastrophe of Nakba Day

Yesterday was the anniversary of the declaration of Israel’s independence — 15th May. The Palestinians commemorate this as Nakba, ‘catastrophe’.

But the catastrophe is that 69 years on, the Palestinian people and their major supporters reject any form of a state of Israel, on the 1948, 1967 or 2005 (Gaza disengagement) borders.

That rather than economic development and entrepreneurship, their leaders chose to define themselves and develop their culture by creating an enemy.

That generation after generation of Palestinians have been brought up hating Jews for being given a place to survive.

That their politicians, government institutions and supporters deny the holocaust, time and time again, in order to delegitimise the state’s founding premise.

That the international community subsidises Palestinian governments who fund, incite and financially encourage terror.

That the Palestinian authorities are rewarded by international institutions for sidestepping direct negotiations with Israel.

That after Israel disengaged from Gaza, the world threw it back in their face, proving to Israelis again that sacrifice doesn’t pay back.

That ‘pro-Palestinian’ means BDS and Palestine Solidarity Campaign, which encourage the elimination of Israel as a state.

In From Beirut To Jerusalem, Thomas Friedman labels Arafat the ‘Teflon Guerilla’, he was the guy responsible for putting the Palestinian cause on the map and carving himself a celebrity status without achieving anything that’s anywhere near peace, almost on purpose.

Abbas follows in his footsteps. badly.

Abu Mazen has been avoiding direct negotiations with Netanyahu by running around international organisations and urging them to recognise a Palestinian state — he needs to realise that recognition means nothing.

Empty recognition will only empower Hamas and the states who sponsor them — which is the worst thing that could happen to the Palestinians and the wider region.

What matters is that the Palestinians create a sustainable and industrious state led by real role-models who understand that they write their own destiny.

Israel works within the confines of a democracy (which includes 1.5m Arabs) — if you show them that sacrifices work, then of course they’ll vote for security. Who wants their kids to go in the army against an enemy like Hamas? Possibly becoming the next Gilad Shalit, or worse, Ehud Goldwasser.

Without doubt, the best thing for Israel is a thriving Palestinian state, where citizens have their own rights, defined by their own government and the rule of law underpinned by true democratic principles; with incentives not to die as a martyr, but to build lives and prosper like a human being.

The catastrophe for the Arab world is that Israel hasn’t gone away — that despite seeing it as temporary, the country is thriving.

After almost 70 years, it’s time for them to deal with the Nakba complex and realise the tragedy lies with their own leadership.

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