“(Reblogged from jayaprada)
Once the decision was taken, it took six months to complete the mission. When it was over, more than half of Palestine’s native population, close to 800,000 people, had been uprooted, 531 villages had been destroyed, and eleven urban neighborhoods emptied of their inhabitants. The plan decided upon on 10 March 1948, and above all its systematic implementation in the following months, was a clear-cut case of an ethnic cleansing operation, regarded under international law today as a crime against humanity. After the Holocaust, it has become almost impossible to conceal large scale crimes against humanity. Our modern communication-driven world, especially since the upsurge of electronic media, no longer allows human made catastrophes to remain hidden from the public eye or to be denied. And yet, one such crime has been erased almost totally from the global public memory: the dispossession of the Palestinians in 1948 by Israel. This, the most formative event in the modern history of the land of Palestine, has ever since been systematically denied, and is still today not recognized as an historical fact, let alone acknowledged as a crime that needs to be confronted politically as well as morally. Ethnic cleansing is a crime against humanity, and the people who perpetrate it today are considered criminals to be brought before special tribunals. It may be difficult to decide how one ought to refer to or deal with, in the legal sphere, those who initiated and perpetrated ethnic cleansing in Palestine in 1948, but it is possible to reconstruct their crimes and to arrive at both an historiographical account that will prove more accurate than the ones achieved so far, and a moral position of greater integrity.