Palestine will be free.
It's hard to believe but there was once a time when an Australian foreign minister could raise the issue of the Palestinian refugees of 1948 with his Israeli counterpart.
The following quote, from 1951, reveals an Israel which, having ethnically cleansed Palestine of its indigenous Arab inhabitants, is furiously engaged in resettling Jewish immigrants in their homes and on their lands. The Australian FM concerned was R G Casey, a minister in the post-war Menzies government. Note particularly the gobsmacking cynicism of his Israeli counterpart at point 3:
"We lunched with [Israeli Minister for Foreign Affairs] Moshe Sharrett at Hotel Royal Monceau. He readily admitted the great difficulties that they were going through with their economic situation, brought about through almost unlimited immigration... I asked Sharrett if they could not make some conciliatory move with regard to the Arab refugees. He said they might possibly agree to discuss this question apart from the general corpus of problems created by their rift with the Arab countries. I asked if this was likely to include any resettlement of those unfortunate people inside Israel and he said he didn't really think this was possible as: 1. it would add to their population pressure; 2 the lands they had previously occupied were now re-settled with other people; and 3. anyhow, he thought they'd be happier elsewhere." (From the diary entry for 11/11/51 in Australian Foreign Minister: The Diaries of R G Casey 1951-60*, 1972, p 54-55)
And here we are over 6 decades later, during which the state of Israel, born of terror, ethnic cleansing and wholesale theft, has countless times defied the constantly reiterated UN General Assembly Resolution 194, calling for the repatriation and compensation of the Palestinian refugees of 1948, with the issue still unresolved.
The Right of Return to their homes and lands of the Palestinian refugees of 1948, now in their millions, is the very heart and soul of the Palestine problem. It will not be ignored and will one day be realised.
And with that in mind:
"Following a general meeting that brought together representatives from various Palestinian and civil society organizations as well as individual activists, the Organizing Committee of Maseerat al 'Awda, the Return to Palestine March, has announced the launch of its preparatory activities.
"The Return to Palestine March will take participants to the border with Occupied Palestine on May 15 to commemorate the Nakba. Similar marches will take place simultaneously in the other countries bordering Palestine. Demonstrations targeting Israeli embassies are also planned in a number of Western cities to protest the occupation of Palestine and the zionist apartheid regime.
"The Return to Palestine March will serve to reaffirm the rights of return and of the liberation of Palestine from the river to the sea, and to reaffirm that these rights are imalienable, irrevocable and non-negotiable. They also aim at confirming the centrality of the Palestine issue to all Arabs.
"The convoys of 'returnees' will leave from different regions of Lebanon and from the Palestinian refugee camps. They will move towards the border through designated routes that will be announced in due course.
"Stay tuned for more information on the Return to Palestine March on this blog as well as the various associated facebook pages." (www.returntopalestine.blogspot.com)
Watch this space...