Israel

Israel, the Holocaust and the Nakba

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Sixty years ago half of Palestine's population was expelled when the state of Israel was created. Acclaimed anti-Zionist historian Ilan Pappe looks at the legacy of the Nazi persecution of Jews, and the complicity of world leaders, past and present, in maintaining the occupation in Palestine.

Very few matrixes can be as sensitive as that of the Holocaust, Israel and the Palestinian Catastrophe of 1948 (known as the Nakba). It is no wonder that very few people in the past have attempted to comment on the nexus between the Holocaust, the Nakba and a solution for the Palestine question. To all intents and purposes, researchers, journalists and essayists who were, and still are, interested in the Palestine question preferred to deal with each of the subject matters separately - as if there is no connection whatsoever between them.

Uniting struggles

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The World Against War conference in London last month united activists from around the world. Ibraham Mousawi, editor of Hezbollah's Alintiqad weekly newspaper, spoke to Patrick Ward about media myths and uniting against imperialism.

During the war last year the media portrayed the resistance as "terrorist", and Hezbollah a "terrorist organisation". What do you think about that?

Married to Another Man

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Anne Alexander spoke to Ghada Karmi about her new book and the situation in Palestine

June was a bad month for supporters of a two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. It remains to be seen whether Palestinian president, Mahmoud Abbas, will re-establish Fatah's authority over the Occupied Territories, or whether the survival of the Hamas-led government will mean in effect a "three-state solution", with Israel dominating a Fatah-led entity in the West Bank, while besieging Hamas in Gaza. But both scenarios underline the impossibility of constructing a viable Palestinian state side by side with Israel.

Building solidarity with Palestine

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Supporters of Israel want to undermine union support for the Palestinians. The left must be clear about imperialism's role in the region, and about how to maximise solidarity, writes Chris Harman.

A big debate has broken out after the annual congress of the lecturers' UCU union voted to hold discussions in branches around the country on how best to show solidarity with the Palestinian people. This has come just as the plight of the Palestinians has gone from bad to worse, with civil war between the elected Hamas administration which controls the Gaza Strip and the Fatah regime based in the West Bank.

Overcoming Zionism

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Joel Kovel, Pluto Press, £15.99

Kovel's book is not the first of recent times to argue that the current situation of Bantustans, security walls and Jewish-only roads has no possibility of laying the basis for an autonomous Palestine.

He argues that Zionism has created an Israeli state that is prone to racism, a lack of democracy and ecological disaster. The only hope for a peaceful outcome is to create a single democratic state in the whole of what is currently Palestine, Israel and its occupied territories.

The Palestinian Unity Government: an Overdue Consensual Strategy?

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The tormented birth of the Palestinian national unity government could mark a truly new phase in the Palestinian struggle for self-determination.

Hamas, the mainstream Palestinian Islamist movement that was established in 1987 and won the January 2006 elections will share power with Fatah, the main Palestinian secular national force who had led the Palestinians from the late 1950s until Hama's surprise election victory this year. The main parameters of the agreement include the formation of a cabinet with almost twice as many posts going to Hamas as to Fateh. Ministers are to be only sympathisers of either movement or technocrats drawn from their second ranks.

Palestine: Attacks on Hamas

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Palestine in 2006 was dominated by a single event: the Palestinian Islamist group Hamas's overwhelming victory in last January's general elections.

Israel then launched an economic embargo on the new government, withholding tax-revenues belonging to the Palestinian Authority (PA) and successfully urging western governments to cease aid payments.

The result has been a slow strangulation of the already crippled Palestinian economy and a great intensification of Palestinian suffering. The justification was three-fold: Hamas's refusal to recognise Israel's right to exist, to formally renounce violence and to accept previous agreements with Israel.

Palestine: Fatah, Hamas, Israel and the West

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In the last weeks of 2006 Palestinian Authority (PA) chairman Mahmoud Abbas and his Fatah faction finally launched their much anticipated attempted coup against the democratically elected Palestinian cabinet headed by the Islamic organisation Hamas and prime minister Ismail Haniyeh.

This followed days of deliberately engineered interfactional violence.

Karma Nablusi, a former leading Fatah activist, has incisively attacked her former party on the authoritative Palestinian website, Electronic Intifada, for allowing themselves to become a Western puppet.

Asserting the Past

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Review of 'The Ethnic Cleansing of Palestine', Ilan Pappe, Oneworld Publications £16.99

When I was 17 I went to Israel and I planted a tree in the Jerusalem "forest". The tree wasn't indigenous and the forest was a recent human construction. I have a certificate from the Jewish National Fund (JNF) that states that I helped make Israel green.

The JNF failed to mention that the forest was the site of the Palestinian village of Ayn al-Zaytun, many of whose inhabitants were massacred by Jewish forces in May 1948. Without historians like Ilan Pappe the existence of this village would be confined to those who survived the expulsion.

Palestine: Boycott of Israel Gains New Support

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An international campaign for Boycott, Disinvestment and Sanctions (BDS) against Israel is growing rapidly.

Outrage at Israel's assault on Lebanon is certain to increase the pace of activity. In Britain university lecturers are spearheading the campaign. In June the national conference of the Natfhe lecturers' union agreed to encourage all members to consider their relations with Israeli universities. There was overwhelming support for a resolution which called for lecturers to break links with universities known to be involved.

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