State of Affairs: Palestinian leaders needs must treat the Palestinian main base as captives to be kept from free and open discourse and research in relation to their own history.
For BackChannels, “The Palestinians” exist, but the idea of the “The People” differently than presumed by the dictatorships and kleptocrats that have chosen to exploit as weapons “the refugees of 1948”, i.e., the many Christians and Muslims abandoned between armies as Arab forces abandoned their mission to annihilate the Jews of Israel.
Genuine peace may have something to do with shared integrity, not my-side-your-side and the wheedled detente that is ever a ceasefire, never a peace.
My argument for the Palestinian People: after 70+ years of comparative isolation associated with Arab Apartheid, the cohort defined by the Arab refugees of 1948 have indeed become a People, but they have been also deeply intellectually poisoned. The big lie as a thought left unaddressed to fester . . . to whip resentment into boiling anger: “The Jews stole your land and God wants to you to seize it back (and annihilate the Jews)”. Never mind the Turkish land registries, the land purchases that began long before WWII, the agricultural industry that drew Arab labor into its economy, or the continuous presence of Jews in Roman-named “Palestine” across millennia.
The myth: Israel was an invasion.
The truth: Israel has been an investment legitimately obtained.
The cruelties to which the Palestinians, in some radicalized part, remain subject: Hitler’s license for the harboring of genocidal ambitions now supported by Hamas, at least; Uncle Joe’s and Father (I guess) Andropov’s reliance on “Information Warfare” and political repression in the ordering of their own delusional worlds.
Today we know what happens to Palestinian dissidents.
Haven’t The Palestinians an inherent right to question their leadership — it has been a long time since the last casting of ballots for them — or to read and discuss, I don’t know, say, Benny Morris, Efraim Karsh, or to engage with Israels as each may see fit without fear?
An authentic Palestinian Liberation Movement would be helpful.
BackChannels has addressed this “Medieval v Modern” topic quite a few times over the years. Among the editor’s favorite echoes: https://conflict-backchannels.com/2018/10/20/ftac-mec-palestinians-a-people-waiting-to-be-born-again-honestly/
The Soviet / post-Soviet seduced Left / Far Left — the Corbynites, the Cult BDS Waters of the world — are not for the Palestinians but for those who have enriched themselves championing their misery in service to the corruption of those who most purport to represent them.
Might Russia’s animus with the Jews go all the way back to the Viking encounter with the Khazar Kingdom that received tribute from east-west trade?
That’s possible. The Khazar, representing a Turkic Khaganate, had converted en masse to a Karaite form of Judaism and would have been regarded as Jews by those whose eastern trade they had taxed. The ever expanding-contracting-expanding range of Nordic / Russian power overtook the Kingdom has it would Kiev as well as half of Britain: the Vikings were to hold sway in what is today thought of as “The West”, or one might say the European tribes north of the Roman Empire.
Has anti-Semitic hate traveled forward from that far in the past?
That too is possible, the calendar of the Hebrews dating back 5,779 years this year.
How primary in the life of polities are fundamental beliefs and accompanying attitudes?
Would Great Britain be “British” without the anti-Semitic depictions of Shakespeare’s Shylock and Dickens’ Fagin, both far predating the encouragement of Russia’s Okhrana and later Bolshevik KGB?
Add the thought to conjecture.
Whatever history may tell the scholars, today’s hatred of the Jews, i.e., contemporary anti-Semitic ideation and obsession, seems a part of the medieval world and its views, not the modern one of integrity, reason, and study.
For The Palestinians, living as subject to the capricious and unquestionable power of Fatah (via the PLO / PA) and Hamas (thanks to its financial supporters), their dignity, freedom, and human rights will remain in the hands of their true captors, and that is the present Palestinian “leaders” who have led them into the most absurd and dark of dead ends.