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IPSC Nakba Commemoration - 17th Feb 2008

category dublin | rights, freedoms and repression | news report author Wednesday February 20, 2008 11:59author by IPSC - IPSCauthor email supportpalestine at ireland dot comauthor address 64 Dame Street, Dublin 2author phone 01-6770253 Report this post to the editors

Howth residents and market goers show their support for UN Resolution 194

On Sunday 17th February IPSC activists and supporters held a vigil to commemorate the Palestinian village of Quisarya which was ethnically cleansed by Zionist forces on February 15th 1948. A map of historic Palestine was erected on the green at Howth Quays and members of the public were encouraged to place Palestinian flags in remembrance of the Nakba and symbolically returning the refugees to their lands.
Finding out what its all about
Finding out what its all about

Leaflets and wallet cards calling on Michael Woods TD (Chairman of Oireachtas Committee on Foreign Affairs) to support the implementation of UN Resolution 194 which give Palestinian refugees the right to return to their homeland. The IPSC would like to thank all those who took the time to remember the Nakba.

The 2008 Nakba Campaign organisers would like to thank all of the Howth residents & market goers who stopped to place a flag and symbolically return the Palestinian refugees of the 1948 Nakba to their homes, as required under United Nations Resolution 194, last Sunday.

We hope that discussion of the events of 1948 will lead to the enactment of international law in the region, and create a real possibility for peace.

The first person to place a flag on the map was a tourist going to the market, it transpired that her family were Palestinian and she was very pleased to see the occasion marked.

The date commemorated Qisarya, the first town to be completely expelled, on the 15th February 1948, a day when four other villages in the area were also expelled. Their mosque was converted into a restaurant. They are not allowed return.

In 1948 700,000 Palestinians were driven from their homes, civilians were massacred & hundreds of Palestinian villages deliberately destroyed, this expulsion continues today.

Related Link:

Placing flags
Placing flags

Explaining the Nakba
Explaining the Nakba

Placing flags, again
Placing flags, again

They will return!
They will return!

author by David Goldpublication date Wed Feb 20, 2008 13:57author address author phone Report this post to the editors

The map shows that the IPSC clearly believe in a single state solution - a Palestinian State without an Israeli state to be seen.

author by pat cpublication date Wed Feb 20, 2008 14:01author address author phone Report this post to the editors

If you look at the map you will see that borders are clearly outlined. The flags mark the Palestinian villages which were Ethnically Cleansed by the Israelis.

author by David L - IPSC (personal capacity)publication date Thu Feb 21, 2008 10:13author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Pat's right - the IPSC don't take a position on the one-state or two-state solution, figuring that this is something for the Palestinian people themselve to negotiate. It's not for us to impose our ideas on them.

As for the position of the flags, I'm not making any huge claims for geographic accuracy! They were put all over the map by passers-by to symbolise the various towns and villages all over Palestine that were ethnically cleansed - in 1948, 1967 and now.

In fact, considering that there were 500 or so places ethnically cleansed in 1948, the map would be totally crammed with flags, if we'd gone for total accuracy.

author by Scepticpublication date Thu Feb 21, 2008 12:16author address author phone Report this post to the editors

In reality those who insist on the right of return for all refuges and their descendants to Israel proper are effectively calling for the dissolution of the State of Israel in any recognizable form. It’s just doing it in a more sleight of hand manner.

author by Ronanpublication date Thu Feb 21, 2008 14:09author address author phone Report this post to the editors

it's called obeying international law. UN Resolution 194 called for the correct treatment of refugees 60 years ago. What's the delay? Please see Points 8, 9 and 11 below. (The rest makes for interesting reading too if you're bothered.)

United Nations General Assembly Resolution 194 (III)
11 December 1948

The General Assembly,

Having considered further the situation in Palestine,

1. Expresses its deep appreciation of the progress achieved through the good offices of the late United Nations Mediator in promoting a peaceful adjustment of the future situation of Palestine, for which cause he sacrificed his life; and

Extends its thanks to the Acting Mediator and his staff for their continued efforts and devotion to duty in Palestine;

2. Establishes a Conciliation Commission consisting of three States Members of the United Nations which shall have the following functions:

(a) To assume, in so far as it considers necessary in existing circumstances, the functions given to the United Nations Mediator on Palestine by resolution 182;(S-2) of the General Assembly of 14 May 1948;

(b) To carry out the specific functions and directives given to it by the present resolution and such additional functions and directives as may be given to it by the General Assembly or by the Security Council;

(c) To undertake, upon the request of the Security Council, any of the functions now assigned to the United Nations Mediator on Palestine or to the United Nations Truce Commission by resolutions of the Security Council; upon such request to the Conciliation Commission by the Security Council with respect to all the remaining functions of the United Nations Mediator on Palestine under Security Council resolutions, the office of the Mediator shall be terminated;

3. Decides that a Committee of the Assembly, consisting of China, France, the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics, the United Kingdom and the United States of America, shall present, before the end of the first part of the present session of the General Assembly, for the approval of the Assembly, a proposal concerning the names of the three States which will constitute the Conciliation Commission;

4. Requests the Commission to begin its functions at once, with a view to the establishment of contact between the parties themselves and the Commission at the earliest possible date;

5. Calls upon the Governments and authorities concerned to extend the scope of the negotiations provided for in the Security Council's resolution of 16 November 1948 and to seek agreement by negotiations conducted either with the Conciliation Commission or directly, with a view to the final settlement of all questions outstanding between them;

6. Instructs the Conciliation Commission to take steps to assist the Governments and authorities concerned to achieve a final settlement of all questions outstanding between them;

7. Resolves that the Holy Places - including Nazareth - religious buildings and sites in Palestine should be protected and free access to them assured, in accordance with existing rights and historical practice; that arrangements to this end should be under effective United Nations supervision; that the United Nations Conciliation Commission, in presenting to the fourth regular session of the General Assembly its detailed proposals for a permanent international régime for the territory of Jerusalem, should include recommendations concerning the Holy Places in that territory, that with regard to the Holy Places in the rest of Palestine the Commission should call upon the political authorities of the areas concerned to give appropriate formal guarantees as to the protection of the Holy Places and access to them, and that these undertakings should be presented to the General Assembly for approval;

8. Resolves that, in view of its association with three world religions, the Jerusalem area, including the present municipality of Jerusalem plus the surrounding villages and towns, the most eastern of which shall be Abu Dis; the most southern, Bethlehem, the most western, Ein Karim (including also the built-up area of Motsa); and the most northern Shu'fat, should be accorded special and separate treatment from the rest of Palestine and should be placed under effective United Nations control;

Requests the Security Council to take further steps to ensure the demilitarization of Jerusalem at the earliest possible date;

Instructs the Commission to present to the fourth regular session of the General Assembly detailed proposals for a permanent international régime for the Jerusalem area which will provide for the maximum local autonomy for distinctive groups consistent with the special international status of the Jerusalem area;

The Conciliation Commission is authorized to appoint a United Nations representative, who shall co-operate with the local authorities with respect to the interim administration of the Jerusalem area;

9. Resolves that, pending agreement on more detailed arrangements among the Governments and authorities concerned, the freest possible access to Jerusalem by road, rail or air should be accorded to all inhabitants of Palestine;

Instructs the Conciliation Commission to report immediately to the Security Council, for appropriate action by that organ, any attempt by any party to impede such access;

10. Instructs the Conciliation Commission to seek arrangements among the Governments and authorities concerned which will facilitate the economic development of the area, including arrangements for access to ports and airfields and the use of transportation and communication facilities;

11. Resolves that the refugees wishing to return to their homes and live at peace with their neighbours should be permitted to do so at the earliest practicable date, and that compensation should be paid for the property of those choosing not to return and for loss of or damage to property which, under principles of international law or in equity, should be made good by the Governments or authorities responsible;

Instructs the Conciliation Commission to facilitate the repatriation, resettlement and economic and social rehabilitation of the refugees and the payment of compensation, and to maintain close relations with the Director of the United Nations Relief for Palestine Refugees and, through him, with the appropriate organs and agencies of the United Nations;

12. Authorizes the Conciliation Commission to appoint such subsidiary bodies and to employ such technical experts, acting under its authority, as it may find necessary for the effective discharge of its functions and responsibilities under the present resolution;

The Conciliation Commission will have its official headquarters at Jerusalem. The authorities responsible for maintaining order in Jerusalem will be responsible for taking all measures necessary to ensure the security of the Commission. The Secretary-General will provide a limited number of guards for the protection of the staff and premises of the Commission;

13. Instructs the Conciliation Commission to render progress reports periodically to the Secretary-General for transmission to the Security Council and to the Members of the United Nations;

14. Calls upon all Governments and authorities concerned to co-operate with the Conciliation Commission and to take all possible steps to assist in the implementation of the present resolution;

15. Requests the Secretary-General to provide the necessary staff and facilities and to make appropriate arrangements to provide the necessary funds required in carrying out the terms of the present resolution.

author by Scepticpublication date Thu Feb 21, 2008 20:42author address author phone Report this post to the editors

194 (III) is a General Assembly Resolution which is not the same thing as international law and would depend for implementation on final status negotiation. Besides it says refugees should be “allowed to return” rather than conferring a right of return as such and in any event there have been many substantial material changes in the situation in the past 60 years – it is doubtful if is to be taken to mean that all generations of descendants of the original refuges were envisaged within its scope. There is also the issue of reciprocal rights for Jewish and other refugees from Arab states and their position. At the very last stage in the Oslo process Arafat threw this grenade into the whole works knowing full well that it would not only prevent agreement but scupper the whole process and lead to a reversal of the entire Oslo process so painstakingly put together by many eminent parties since Madrid her over years and with the close and personal involvement of the US Presidents. If the maximalist demand is pressed, as with Hamas, there will always be deadlock and tension as Israel cannot negotiate itself out of existence for something that has no precedent in any refugee migration in recent times and there have been many involving millions expelled from the eastern German lands after the second world war for instance. An even-handed approach to the issue recognizes this. However this is not what we have from either Hamas or the IPSC. The IPSC follows a stridently anti Israeli position – not that of a sympathetic bystander concerned about injustice.

author by Babspublication date Thu Feb 21, 2008 23:52author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Is it a Woollworths pic and mix ?

What about 181 saying there should be an Arab and a Jewish State ?

29 Nov 1947 -the day before the SArabs started the 60 years war

author by David Lpublication date Fri Feb 22, 2008 12:58author address author phone Report this post to the editors

It's great that this article has attracted so many aspiring lawyers. Besides the UN resolutions, there is the declaration of Human Rights, the rights all refugees have to return to their homes. Frankly, there's a barrow load of international law, all of which Israel is ignoring.

Remember, this isn't about the rights of a racist state to continue to be racist - it is about the human rights of these millions of refugees. Can those defenders of Israel not spare even an iota of common human sympathy for them.

author by Ronanpublication date Fri Feb 22, 2008 13:02author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Firstly, the resolution would not get anywhere near legislation status as US would veto it. Also, vetoed resolutions are not only vetoed from international law, they are, in effect, vetoed from the official memory or official current reference as the act of the veto effectively deletes it from the current process. The resolution is, thereafter, cast down among resolutions that ‘never made it’ and can never carry the weight of agreed upon international law.

Speaking from a personal viewpoint, if you want to talk about negotiations, it is obvious that it will not be acceptable to the Zionists/Israelis to have every single person claming descendancy to return to Palestine. Agreeable demographic levels must be worked out during extensive negotiations that are crucially both equitable and free from impedence. All parties are aware of that, despite of all parties stated positions. This is the same in every negotiated political settlement; two groups with disparate views meet and hopefully reach agreeable conclusions.

The fact that a party has a specific ideal does not mean that one side can say that, because the other has a specific ideal or goal, we will not deal with them. Also, it does not mean that because of a seemingly entrenched position, one side should do everything in their power to weaken such a side to the point where their hand will be forced to accept what we decide to offer. In order for any negiotated settlement to work over the long term, there should an approach where both sides can feel that they have, and be seen to, make concessions in certain areas and retain positions in others. All parties must have bargaining positions and must in position to have these recognised as they bring them to the table. An even handed approach I’m sure you’ll agree.

The point is that the refugees issue is a very important one that is never really considered in any peace talk or proposals. The less thorny issues are dealt with and vague references with no timeframes are sketched in about the crucially important issues. Obviously baby steps must be taken the start but this should be regarded as the beginning, not touted as ‘an agreement’ that, in reality, represents progress for only one side.

I posted the Resolution text because there is a concerted effort by certain parties to erase the Nakba ethnic cleansing from record. The ridiculousness of the below article in Haaretz is only juxtaposed by the disgusting, methodical events of the Nakba.

What happened to "The bride is beautiful but she is married to another man"?

You refer to “maximalist demands” as if the stated position of the US has not changed since Oslo and the Clinton years. It’s plainly obvious that Bush has rowed back on the some of the (even then inadequate) positions that Clinton was willing to push.

Just two of which are:
- Clinton spoke of Palestinian refugees finding homes in other states including Israel, at the Aquba summit, Bush stated that Palestinian refugees should be settled in a future Palestinian state "rather than Israel."
- In the Clinton Parameters, Israel's security needs "need not and should not come at the expense of Palestinian sovereignty or interfere with Palestinian territorial integrity." In contrast, Bush allows for Israel to continue to control airspace, territorial waters, and land passages in the Gaza Strip and the West Bank "pending agreements or other arrangements”

Where is the “even handed” nature that you feel is so important in this?

This is another example of the US/Zionist-Israeli arrogance in that the US/Israel feel that they can do anything they want, act aggressively militarily, diplomatically, economically etc but when threats rise and counter such aggression, the US/Israel holds up it’s hands in a gesture of innocence (unbelievably), and says ‘look at what these guys are doing, that’s wrong’. The hypocrisy is defies belief.

The US talk to insurgents in Iraq (in fact they call them ‘insurgents’, not ‘terrorists’ because they know they will have to talk to them officially at some stage). They talk to the Taliban. They talk to what they class as ‘terrorists’ in other conflicts but Palestine is only area where they say they do not talk to terrorists. The hypocrisy is again obvious.

Why do they do all this? Because they are pursuing a policy of aggressionist expansion coupled with a consolidation of power in many forms all over the West Bank and Gaza. A peace settlement does not appear to be part of their agenda in any way, shape or form. That is most unfortunate for all the people of the region.

Anyway, I’ve written too much as it is.

author by Scepticpublication date Fri Feb 22, 2008 17:11author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Firstly the 1948 war launched against Israel was itself a breach of a UNGA resolution.

The US does engage with Fatah who are former terrorists but did not do so whilst they were still engaging in terrorism. This is an important matter of principle. The US would engage with Hamas but for failure to disavow terrorism or attacks on Israel from Gaza and the failure even to recognize the right of Israel to exist. What one had with Iraq was the discovery by the former Sunni terrorists that they had a common interest with the US in crushing Al Qaeda in Iraq. The US does not talk to the Taliban. The present problems flow from Hamas, which is not just now an interlocutor with which business can be done. Hamas is not really interested in peace but doing the bidding of Damascus and Tehran in keeping the pot of instability and violence well stirred in Gaza with no shortage of cheerleaders in the west, not least in Galway, to propagandise on their behalf with a veneer of humanitarian concern of course. The position among the Palestinians mirrors that in man other Arab States where there is tension if not open war between the secular faction and the Islamists. Indeed the Palestinians are lucky that Israel is physically in between the main protagonists – otherwise there would very bloody be all out civil war.

Of course there must be significant Israeli concessions, especially on settlements and on territory. Of course there are unreasonable elements within Israel too but they need not veto all progress so long as there is an appearance of moderation on the other side and a diminution of the violence. Of course a gradualist approach is the way to go. But where is any sign of reasonableness on the part of Hamas? They seem to prefer extremism and violence to any real effort to develop a civil society that might educate the children of Palestine and not make them militants and suicide bombers.

The current US administration has given much time effort energy and resources to finding a solution with numerous summits and an ongoing process. Demonization and the imputation of bad faith to the US and the rest of the international community is unhelpful – the US has partners in its approach including Egypt, Jordan and occasionally Saudi Arabia. The Palestinian side scuppered Oslo and another generation of young Palestinians was lost. For what – they are not going to do better or much better anyway than what was an offer then. Nor can they destroy Israel – only Tehran can do that if they get nuclear weapons.

This country developed itself and modernized when it stopped obsessing about partition and ancient grievances, settled for what we had and made the best of it with EU membership and economic and social development. There might be some parallel there for the Palestinians. Any reader of these boards can see that the forces of darkness, extremism, violence and backward looking grievance nursing still exist in Ireland but thankfully there are in a small minority. Today’s Bebo generation by and large is concerned with making the most of life of life’s rich opportunities. They are not concerned with the latest graveside oration on the evils of partition from Ruri O’Bradaigh. Even American officials who were arranging scholarships for bright Palestinian students have been subject to terrorism. That is nihilism indeed.

author by Ronanpublication date Mon Feb 25, 2008 16:43author address author phone Report this post to the editors

You talk about the US forces co-opting Sunni terrorists in Iraq as if it was the most natural thing in the world. The US has no right to be in Iraq. They committed what the Nuremberg Charter calls the ‘supreme international crime of aggression’ by invading Iraq, justifying this travesty with false and malleable excuses.

The “Sunni terrorists” attempting to stop Al Qaeda in Iraq didn’t exist before the US invaded. There was a brutal Sunni dictator there to keep Al Qaeda out or at least limit their activities. There was no love between Al Qaeda and Hussein. What the US is doing is using the people of the region against those who would seek to either protect their homeland from invaders or those who use every opportunity to attack Americans. It reduces their own body count and limits the bad press. Any commentators who view certain US actions favourably would do well not to invoke the increasing US debacle in Iraq; it is synonymous with catastrophic failure.

Regarding recognizing the right of Israel to exist – the insistence by Israel for that pre-condition is be nothing but a deliberate stumbling block, designed to frustrate inception of any such negotiation process. Political parties don’t recognise states, states recognise states. The very act of accepting a negotiation process tacitly admits the existence the other side, but any process looks unlikely to happen if Israel insists on what amounts to nothing but a humiliating first-submission by the Palestinian side before the process can even begin.

The rise of Hamas is partly a US creation. By not insisting on a reduction in corruption and blindly throwing money at the more corrupt elements of Fatah, they created the dissention so desired by occupying forces. The election of Hamas, had very little to do with, as the West may believe, the sudden realisation that the Koran was the standard to live by and that the entire country would be better off were it living under Islamic law. Instead, as part of a Western-led programme to hold free and fair elections, it was a response to a desire for government that campaigned on the provision of education and medical facilities for the people, among other things. A fresh government that said it would focus on the people and not turn a blind eye to siphoning of funds by senior party members. Of course it goes without saying that some of the actions of Hamas are wrong. What leads a people to elect an extreme party?

The fact that you say that the Palestinians are lucky to be subject to the tyranny of murder, starvation, and theft that the occupation inflicts on the people daily just shows how skewed your view of the matter is. How can that be a good thing? What sort of attitude is “Well, if we don’t kill them, they kill themselves”. The historical fact remains that there is nearly always a civil war in a country AFTER the occupying force has realised they should not be there and go home. However, what appears to be happening in Palestine is that Zionists/Israel/US are using the divide-and-conquer tactic by playing both sides off each other and as that happens, using the opportunity to increase both their grip on the country and the destruction of the Palestinian society.

You talk about a “Real effort to develop a civil society” - how in the name of god can anybody develop a civil society with no fuel, power, medical facilities, food, agriculture, industry, leaving the entire area practically cut off from the outside world. Extremely limited access to the above items results in major shortages that affect the entire population. This short-sighted action only creates future hostility that later generations on all sides will have to deal with. I’m guessing the Bebo generation wouldn’t be too keen on being stuck in Gaza.

“US administration has given much time effort energy and resources to finding a solution”. They have not to done so unfortunately. Much time, effort and resources have gone into the whole process but the end goal would not appear to “find a solution”. Settlement building is continuing (Har Homa for example), house demolitions are continuing. As George Bush was on his last PR trip (first in the region after years in office), the attacks on Palestinians did not even cease. If you were to play a recording of the sound of the attacks and subsequent screams, as the president spoke during one of the press conferences, they would cease to be such jolly affairs. How can aggressively pushing your position by adding to the problem (e.g. settlements etc) be viewed as “finding a solution”?

Why you think that it’s a good thing that today’s younger/bebo generation are only focused on themselves and certain elements of “life’s riches” is beyond me. Hopefully such a focus is only a veneer.

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