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Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Azmi Bishara: There's no such thing as 'Palestine'

I wonder how many of you remember Azmi Bishara, the former Knesset member who walked into the Israeli embassy in Cairo in April 2007 and resigned from the Knesset after he got word that he was about to be indicted for treason for helping Hezbullah aim rockets during the 2006 Second Lebanon War. Bishara has not come back to Israel since.

Here's an interview with Bishara (in Hebrew) from Israel's Channel 2 television that took place approximately ten years ago. A fuller translation than what you are about to see will follow the interview (Hat Tip: Shy Guy).

And here's a more complete translation than what you saw on the screen:
In an Interview with Yaron London (Israel's Channel 2, recorded about a decade ago), Bashara said:

"I don't think there is a Palestinian nation. I think there is an Arab nation, I think that this (the term "Palestinian nation") is a colonial invention. Palestine, up to the end of the 19th century was southern Syria.
Yes folks, I keep telling you, there's no such thing as 'Palestine' or a 'Palestinian.' Even the Arabs themselves occasionally acknowledge that truth when their guard is down. Here's another example.

In an interview given by Zuhair Mohsen to the Dutch newspaper Trouw in March 1977, Mr. Mohsen explains the origin of the 'Palestinians':

The Palestinian people does not exist. The creation of a Palestinian state is only a means for continuing our struggle against the state of Israel for our Arab unity. In reality today there is no difference between Jordanians, Palestinians, Syrians and Lebanese. Only for political and tactical reasons do we speak today about the existence of a Palestinian people, since Arab national interests demand that we posit the existence of a distinct "Palestinian people" to oppose Zionism.
For tactical reasons, Jordan, which is a sovereign state with defined borders, cannot raise claims to Haifa and Jaffa, while as a Palestinian, I can undoubtedly demand Haifa, Jaffa, Beer-Sheva and Jerusalem. However, the moment we reclaim our right to all of Palestine, we will not wait even a minute to unite Palestine and Jordan.
So why does everyone expect Israel to cut out half of its guts to create a real state for an imaginary people? Why does everyone expect Israel to endanger its own security to give a state to a people that does not exist?


At 3:40 PM, Blogger NormanF said...

If the Palestinians wanted a state, they could have it today. They have repeatedly rejected an end to the conflict with Israel if the price is acceptance of Israel's permanence. For them, its a struggle that has only a winner and a loser and as long as they are on the losing side, they will not agree to any peace terms with Israel, not even as generous as the offer presented to them by Ehud K. Olmert. There is indeed no such thing as Palestine - and that is what the rest of the world and sadly, a number of deluded Israeli Jews refuse to get.

For the Palestinians, the sine qua non as for the last 60 years remains the destruction of Israel.

At 6:29 PM, Blogger Andre (Canada) said...

People, people, people...
Please stop blurring fiction with facts!


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