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Tuesday, March 18, 2008


Return and Coexistence Initiative

Ziad Abu Ein

In order to demonstrate their belief and trust in UN resolutions and put into force what the international community has failed to do, the Palestinian people decided willfully to implement UN Resolution (194), declare themselves holders of the UN blue banner, and return to their homeland wherefrom they had been forcefully expelled. Sixty years following the expulsion and loss in the Diaspora, the Palestinian people have recruited their energy and that of all people who believe in peace, human rights and international legitimacy, to carry out their irrevocable right of return to their homeland in order to live in peace and security with their Israeli neighbors. Such coexistence will protect and defend human life, put an end to religious and intellectual bigotry, and highlight the right of people to have a peaceful and secure life. Thus the Palestinian people, determined to live in peace with Jews in the land of peace, will fulfill the mission of international legitimacy and humanitarian law.

Neither Jews nor the international community can stand against the desire of the Palestinian people to exercise their right of return to their homeland, and to their homes, land, holy places and heritage. In the annual commemoration of the suffering that the Palestinian people have been living through and the historical injustice that they had to bear, they are determined to shake off this injustice and implement the resolutions of international legitimacy. The Palestinian people call upon Jewish, Moslem and Christian believers and the international community to support humanitarian law and the right of return for the Palestinian people, and reject all forms of injustice. We call on Israelis to support the Palestinian initiative to live in peace and mutual coexistence, and welcome their Palestinian brothers who are eagerly looking forward to living in security and peace with them.

In implementation of this, May 14, 2008, marking 60 years of dispossession and homelessness, will be a day for the international community and the Palestinian people to carry out UN Resolution (194). Let us be soldiers to carry out this resolution and thus:

1.All Palestinian refugees inside and abroad have the right to exercise the right of return in a peaceful manner and become UN soldiers of peace.

2.All returnees have to raise the UN banner only.

3.All returnees have to attach UN resolution and the refugee card on their chests.

4.All returnees must bring their tents and other goods with them because most probably their houses had been destroyed and therefore they might be forced to live in tents on their land. If attacked by the discriminatory Israeli security forces that reject international law and legitimacy, we will not attack back but we will set up our tents hoping that our relatives and Jewish friends will assist us in our search for peaceful coexistence which will overcome any racial or inhuman trend.

5.Arab countries have to stress our right for return and we thank them for everything they have done to Palestinian refugees. We call on Arab countries to open their borders before Palestinian refugees and help them return to their homeland. Here we specifically name the countries of Jordan, Syria, Egypt, Lebanon, and Iraq.

6.All Palestinians in Arab and Islamic countries must go to any of the ring countries to exercise this peaceful march in application to their individual right of return.

7.Arab countries and friends all over the world are called upon to support the logistics of exercising this right.

8.All Palestinians holders of foreign citizenships, especially US and European citizenships, are called upon to book for their return at the Israeli airport or ring countries on May 14 , 2008. Charter planes could be booked to ensure their safe arrival. In addition, tens of ships can be reserved to take them from international seaports provided that all bookings take place on the same date.

9.A personal invitation will be extended to all world leaders and members of all parliaments in the name of Palestinian refugees to support their humanitarian movement.

10.An invitation will be extended to all civil society institutions and their legal commissions.

11.An invitation will be extended to all judges and international legal advisors and attorneys.

12.An invitation will be extended to UN Secretary-General and international ambassadors.

13.Kings and leaders of Islamic countries will be invited.

14.Journalists and reporters will be invited to cover the event.

15.The Israeli government, members of the Israeli Knesset, and parties who advocate justice and peace will be invited.

16.A special invitation will be extended to the US President, senators, civil society institutions, and urge them to resist all racists and extremists who reject the right of return.

17.Arab and international artists will be invited to participate in the event.

18.The Palestinians pledge before the world to exercise the international resolution out of their belief in mutual coexistence and rejection of violence, terrorism and bigotry.

In the name of the Palestinian people in the Diaspora who are eager to return to their homeland and live in peace with their Jewish neighbors, we call on our Arab nation, in particular the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Abdullah Ben Suoud, Prince Hamad Ben Khalifeh Al- Misbah, and Mohammad Ben Rashed, and our dear kings and leaders of the Arab world to help and assist and provide means of logistic support to our Palestinian people to return home to the Holy Land.

We ask them to support this gesture politically, diplomatically and materially.

Likewise, we call upon all air travel agencies and land and sea shipments in the Arab world to shoulder their national and human responsibilities and support Palestinians to return homeland.We urge all charity institutions, businessmen and economists to support this inundation of return.

We call upon our Palestinian national institutions, their factions and leaders, as well as women and youth movements in Palestine to organize committees for the convoys of returnees. Every member in the Palestinian society is called upon to contribute put an end to Palestinian homelessness. We call on all parties, movements and civil society institutions in the Arab world and foreign countries to remove all obstacles before exercising human rights, and promote the sovereignty of law, and the will to live in peace, and shun all forms of racism, hatred and violence.

(God who gave life to people wanted them to live in peace, justice and dignity)

We launch this human, legal and moral initiative to stress the need for the implementation of justice and international legitimacy without any political or factional dimension, hoping that all creative and energetic Arab and international efforts to contribute to making it real and practicable program.

Sixty years of injustice and oppression, pain and suffering-enough --. We will not wait for return to the negotiation table and we will not wait for more slogans. We have to take decisive resolutions and execute our desire and our right and our readiness to fight, believing in life, sharing and coexistence that contradict all concepts of racism.

This initiative might put an end to Palestinian internal strife and bring back the Palestinian case to the forefront. The Palestinian people dream of peace, truth and security.

Our belief and exercise of the right of return will put before the whole world and the Israelis their responsibilities. We are a people who will return to their land from which we were expelled, and we agree to live side by side with the Jewish people free from the culture of the denial of the other at the intellectual, doctrinal, human and existential levels. If the Israelis reject this, then they will prove to be racial and ethnically fanatic who deny the right of existence to other people. We will put an end to this kind of thinking.

Let the will of our people to return homeland be victorious.

Let the UN resolutions, international legitimacy, and the international law be victorious.

Let us defeat the cultural of terrorism, racism and denial of the other.

sounds like a plan. I can't remember who said it (curse my memory) but it is was that they were not convinced that the Palestinians really wanted to return... b/c if they did all they had to do is walk into Palestine en-masse. I guess this makes sense if the IOF only had gund and 'standard' weapons (i.e. no chemical weapons, no dime, no white phosphorous, no cluster bombs etc.) and if that supply was limited. I cant help but think if this was to go ahead we would ne marching against the israeli and US armies.

still, it is fear that holds us back... not lack of true desire to return.
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