Jack Sara on Palestinian Understanding What the Arabic Word ‘Nakba’ Means

Do you know about the nakba? Every year, when Israel commemorates the founding of the nation, the Palestinian people commemorate the nakba, which in Arabic means catastrophe.

Why was it a catastrophe? In just a few weeks time, over 500 Palestinian villages were depopulated, and about 750,000 people made homeless. After all of this time, neither that generation nor any of their descendants have been allowed to return to their homes or villages.

Many fled their homes with their keys in their pockets, never imagining that they’d never set foot inside them again. For us, it was an experience of deep trauma that remains with us to this day and is indeed ongoing. I do not have time to delve into all of the issues here, but suffice it to say that without a resolution to the wider situation, our nakba has not yet come to an end. It continues in the Occupied Palestinian Territories and parts of Israel, where Palestinian homes, villages, and resources continue to be made at risk.

At the anniversary of the 72 years since the Palestinian nakba, a catastrophic decision has been made by the new Israeli government, which has just been formed based on a coalition of the right-wing Likud party led by Prime Minister Netanyahu and the “centrist” Blue and White party led by Gantz.

Anyone who has been following the news here knows that it took the Israeli government three elections and political games on many sides in order to finally form the current government. This unity coalition was certainly not expected by the Israeli voting public, and many people do not anticipate it to last – but for now, politics is politics!

A major agenda that was proposed by this new government, and encouraged by the current U.S. administration, is the annexation of over 30 percent of the West Bank — an area that is home to hundreds of Palestinian communities. Of course, thousands of acres of homes and land and resources that belong to Palestinians will be confiscated at the moment Israel declares its sovereignty over them.

Sadly, every time Israel makes a unilateral decision on issues related to the Land, it puts another nail in the coffin of the peace process as well as the two-state solution that was supposed to happen a long time ago.

As an Evangelical leader that was born and raised in this conflict-torn land, it grieves me deeply to see how many opportunities have been missed during my lifetime to achieve agreements that could lead to peace and justice for all in the Holy Land.

Certainly, it is also very painful to see how many Evangelical leaders from other parts of the world take an oppositional stance towards any agreement leading to a just peace for both nations.

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SOURCE: Christian Post, Jack Sara