Tuesday, December 22, 2015

Delinking the Palestinians by Joseph Massad

"While delinking the Palestinians from the interests of the Arab world and the Arab peoples has proceeded steadily since the 1970s for Arab governments and elites alike (including campaigns like “Jordan First,” “Lebanon First” and “Egypt First”), the Islamist countercurrent that emerged at the same time has undercut this effort considerably by insisting that Palestine remains a Muslim, if no longer, an Arab cause.
Here Jerusalem is not seen as a large Palestinian city whose lands and holy places are being confiscated day by day for exclusive Jewish colonial use, and whose Palestinian population – Muslims and Christians alike – is expelled, besieged, humiliated and denationalized. Rather, Jerusalem is depicted as merely a religious symbol for Christians and Muslims whose sanctuaries have fallen under the rule of Israel and Jewish colonial settlers.
Jewish settler-colonialism in this Palestinian city has not abated since the 1880s with the expulsion and ethnic cleansing of the first wave of Jerusalemites and the occupation and ethnic cleansing of the western parts of their city concluded in 1948.
The remaining and oldest parts of Jerusalem, where its holy places are located, would not become subject to Jewish colonial supremacy until after Israel occupied them in 1967."