Saturday, 1 September 2007

"How can you give someone back only a part of a house he lived in?"

By Henry Lowi

When debating the rights of the Palestine refugees, one often hears the following from left-wing supporters of Zionist racism, purporting to be "pragmatists":

"What's done is done. One can't always be turning back the clock. Otherwise, there would be no end. We must make peace with the Palestinians, and the Palestinian refugees must give up their right to return. Maybe a few can return on humanitarian grounds, the rest will have to accept token compensation."

This is the position of all the wings of "left" Zionism (and left "non-Zionism"), and all those who support the so-called "two-state solution" i.e. those who uphold the discriminatory and anti-democratic state structures of the Israeli regime.

The preposterousness of this position is illustrated by the position that Jewish organizations take toward claims for restitution of property that was seized from Jews by the Nazi invaders, and then re-seized by the "Communist" liberators.

Can you imagine someone saying:

"The Jews of Poland abandoned their homes voluntarily, and sought refuge in the Eastern zone under Soviet protection, planning to return with the victorious Allied armies, and thus forfeited their property"? Or "The Jews of Poland, when they had the chance to return to liberated Poland, chose not to do so but settled in the capitalist West, and thus forfeited their property"?

No one would dare.

Recognition of the right of European Jews to return to their countries of origin in Europe is not in issue. No one in their right mind denies it. It is irrelevant that a minority of European Jews actually seek to exercise this right of return.

In Europe, the only issue is the right to restitution and compensation. And when offered compensation for 15 per cent of the seized property, Naftali Lavie rejected it and responded: "How can you give someone back only a part of a house he lived in," Lavie said. "I would not call this a compromise ... it is depriving people of their property and parts of their lives," he said."

Isn't what is gravy for the goose gravy for the gander?

What is gravy for the goose is gravy for the gander. (See "Holocaust survivors to press Poland for compensation".)

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