Israeli Arab envoy to Norway calls for disbanding idea of ‘Nakba’ that stifles closure

 

Watch: Deputy Ambassador George Deek says, “To me it seems the Nakba has been transformed from a humanitarian issue to a political one, to perpetuate the current situation…. It is time to put the hatred and alienation behind us.”

By Shlomo Cesana

 

Israeli Deputy Ambassador to Norway George Deek is a Christian Arab has called on disbanding the notion of the Nakba, or “Catastrophe,” as many Arab nations refer to Israel’s establishment in 1948.

Israeli Deputy Ambassador to Norway George Deek – Photo: George Deek

Deek, the son of refugees from Jaffa, has lectured throughout Europe on his family’s history, and has called on others who left or were deported from Jaffa after 1948 to let go of the Nakba concept.

“When I walk through my birthplace, Jaffa, I think about the fishermen’s beach in 1948, about my house in Ajami [neighborhood] and the stories I heard about those years,” Deek said in a lecture uploaded recently to YouTube.

“My grandfather George, after whom I was named, lived in Jaffa with his family for 400 years. He married Vera, my grandmother, and a few months later their plans changed. The United Nations recognized Israel and a few months later the State of Israel was formed. The Arab leaders warned that anyone who stays will be murdered by the Jews and they suggested running away. They said that armies of five Arab nations would destroy Israel and we would be able to return to our homes.

“The war ended with an Arab failure. [They] did not succeed in destroying Israel. Since 1948, there have been numerous occasions, including now, of refugees being kicked out of their homes.”

Deek questioned why the displacement in Israel is the only one to be called the Nakba.

“Why are Poles, Iraqis and others not mentioned by the international community and the U.N., but the Nakba is? To me it seems the Nakba has been transformed from a humanitarian issue to a political one, to perpetuate the current situation as leverage against Israel. It is time to put the hatred and alienation behind us.”

View original Israel Hayom publication at: http://www.israelhayom.com/site/newsletter_article.php?id=20639

One comment

  1. Ruth Morris says:

    Mr Deek, I found your talk deeply moving. And a voice of hope. May all peace-loving people in the world be able to speak out as logically as you have. I don’t know who at the Foreign Ministry enabled you to join their ranks originally, nor who appointed you to your current post. But I am sure that you will go on to even bigger things. And I wish you well in all your future endeavours.
    Thank you from the bottom of my heart for giving me reason to hope – against hope? – that one day The Situation in the land between the Med and the Dead aka the Jordan will be resolved peacefully and allow all reasonable people to live there in peace and healthy and tranquility and prosperity.
    Shana tova and chag sameach
    Ruth Morris

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