To the editor:
Imagine that well-armed newcomers to your country decide that you can no longer live in your home (and your country) and that the only reason you are prevented from exercising your legal right to return is that you belong to the wrong religion and ethnic group.
Sixty-one years ago, that is what happened to about 750,000 Palestinians. Their continued presence in their ancestral land conflicted with the aim of European colonizers to transform the land into a Jewish state.
Residents of the Gaza Strip have learned that they could lose their homes several times in a single lifetime. By the time Israel concluded its 23-day bombing campaign against 1.5 million Palestinians last January, at least 1,400 Palestinians were killed, the vast majority civilians killed in their homes or other shelters.
Homes of Palestinian residents of the East Jerusalem neighborhood of Sheikh Jarrah are being bulldozed on grounds that the homes lack licenses (which are difficult for Palestinians to obtain). Sometimes owners are evicted by Jewish settlers as the army watches. In Jerusalem, Palestinians have no right to their own homes.
On Tuesday, the Rocky Mountain Peace and Justice Center will screen Part 5 of a documentary series looking at the global Palestinian refugee experience over the last 60 years. “The Talk of Return” explores the work that has been done to enable refugees to return and refugee responses to the lack of institutional progress on the issue.
Filmmaker Adam Shapiro will be available to discuss the documentary and the upcoming Free Gaza Movement action to sail to Gaza to break the siege and blockade of the Gaza Strip.
Join us at 7 p.m. Tuesday in Benson Earth Sciences Building, Room 185.