Hope for reconciliation from the next generation

Hope for reconciliation from the next generation

I admit I don’t have much hope for a solution to the Israel-Palestine conflict, but I keep sending out information.  Given that the British Parliament recognized a Palestinian state to exist side by side with Israel, I really believe that this act will be followed by others — it is just a matter of time.

Remarkable for an Israeli diplomat these days, this speech includes a frank discussion of the Palestinian Nakba (“catastrophe” of 1948).  But the story he tells of his grandparents, Christian-Palestinian Arabs from Jaffa, permitted to return after being refugees in Lebanon for several months, is exceptional for being so rare. The tragedy of the original Palestinian refugees and their later generations to this day is that most have been stateless — denied citizenship in the Arab countries they’ve settled in (except for Jordan) nor allowed to return to either Israel or the Palestinian territories.

He also mentions the forced exodus of 800,000 Jews from the Arab and Islamic world.  A reasonable plan to compensate and settle the Palestinians needs to be negotiated; this might be facilitated with an international fund that also compensates Israeli families with claims against Arab countries.

For many years I believed that the Arabs of Israel– now called by many, Israeli-Palestinians– would be the bridge between Israel and the Palestinians.  It did not happen so far, but this is one of the few hopeful speeches that I’ve seen in a very long time; it’s a half hour to view, and less time to read the transcript: http://www.miff.no/Englisharticles/2014/10/04ThebestspeechanIsraelidiplomateverheld.htm.

By | 2014-10-16T11:31:00-04:00 October 16th, 2014|Blog|5 Comments


  1. Yehuda Erdman October 18, 2014 at 7:34 am - Reply

    Thank you for posting this truly inspirational speech by an Israeli diplomat. What a fine young man he is, and his message which unfortunately most Israeli leaders will ignore and most israelis (and diaspora Jews) will not want to hear, is potentially a game changer.
    As he said we must not succumb to despair but keep right on to the end of the road. The fact is that both Zionism and “Pan-Arabism” are unfinished works in process. It may even take a hundred or five hundred years to complete in a way that satisfies the requirements of all parties in a compromise that everyone will eventually sign up to. However, the right leadership may speed up the process. In the words of George Deek, the right decisions now will bring about a better future for all (including the Jews) and thereby help to redeem the mistakes of the past (including those made by our heroes Ben Gurion, Yigal Alon etc.)
    Best wishes for the New Year
    Yehuda Erdman
    Chair Meretz UK

    • Carley December 28, 2016 at 6:13 pm - Reply

      People noamllry pay me for this and you are giving it away!

    • http://www./ January 8, 2017 at 7:02 am - Reply

      That’s an ingenious way of thinking about it.

    • http://www./ January 17, 2017 at 12:11 pm - Reply

      Mary,Congratulations I came here earlier today and went off to view your post on the Saveur's Best of the Web. That's so neat -you described your pie so well and it looks just delicious -I'll be sure and give it a try.vickie

  2. Barry Mehler October 19, 2014 at 5:19 pm - Reply

    Thank you. I will use this in my Middle East Class.

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