Spare a thought for the Jewish ‘nakba’

When they do not deny Jewish suffering, many pro-Palestinians rationalise the ethnic cleansing of 850,000 Jews from the Arab world as an ‘understandable backlash’. Ahead of the commemoration of the Palestinian Nakba this week, Lyn Julius in the Times of Israel explains that the persecution of the Jews was premeditated:

The ‘understandable backlash’ theory collapses under the weight of evidence that the Arab League drew up a plan to persecute their Jews in 1947 – before it declared war, and just two years after the slaughter of six million Jews in Nazi camps had come to light. The brutal truth is that Arab states conspired to get rid of and defraud their Jews. In other words, the Arab regimes imposed a set of ‘Nuremberg laws’ on their own Jewish citizens. The result was ethnic cleansing and dispossession.

In 1948, five Arabs states launched a double jihad on the Jews – they lost the military war on the Jews of Israel, but comfortably won the ‘civil’ war against the defenceless Jews of Arab lands. What the keffiyeh-clad youngsters demonstrating on university campuses during Nakba Week are really doing is deploring the Arab failure to wipe out the Jews entirely from the region. How progressive is that?

It is no accident that the fascism that precipitated both jihads will not tolerate Christians and other non-Muslims, heretical sects, and anyone else who doesn’t fit the Arab Muslim ‘one nation, one people, one religion’ straightjacket.

Impressionable students and their professors are taken in by the lie that Jews came to steal land belonging to the natives. The refugees of the Jewish ‘nakba’ are living proof that Jews are not colonial interlopers, but indigenous to the region, and whose communities in many cases predated Islam by many centuries. The fact that some 50 percent of the Jewish population of Israel descend from these refugees is a powerful statistic.

Moreover, the antisemitism which Arab-born Jews suffered is key to understanding the Arab and Muslim world’s deep religious and cultural resistance to the idea of a Jewish state. For 14 centuries Jews lived under Muslim rule as dhimmis – inferior subjects, surrendering their right to self-defence to the Muslims. For all its shortcomings, Israel has delivered these Jews from the yoke of Arab-Muslim supremacy.

In all conscience, every liberal ought to see the self-determination of a small, indigenous Middle Eastern people – the Jews – as a progressive cause. Instead, students and their teachers supporting the Palestinian campaign against Israel – deceptively cloaked in the language of human rights – have become unwitting agents for ethno-religious fascism.

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Cross-posted at Harry’s Place

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