Monday, April 15th, 2013

Palestinians or Arabs?

This was preached in the United States. However, America has over 30 Million Latins; a greater population than many Latin countries.

The preacher is giving a standard Evangelical line.

The Palestinians do not exist. They are merely Arabs from somewhere else.

I understand his point. He wants to assert Israel’s right to the land. I agree with that.

However, I am not so sure you can say an invented people do not exit.

America invented itself in 1776. Mexico, Argentina, Chile, and a large section of Latin America invented themselves in 1810. Belgium invented itself in 1830.

Nations invent themselves all the time.

There was a considerable Arab population in the land before 1900. Even Jewish sources admit that. About 500,000 non-Jews.

Natural birth rates could explain most of their increasing numbers up to 1948.

Was there migration in during the Mandate period, as Joan Peters asserts? Yes; but most of the Arabs there were not immigrant stock. Joan Peters was not wrong, but she did exaggerate.

The Palestinian-Christians of Chile certainly feel they are Palestinian. They formed a soccer team in 1920 called the Palestinos – Not the Árabes, or Syrios del Sur (South Syrians). They considered themselves Palestinian as early as 1920.

That does not mean the Palestinians have a greater claim to the land than the Jews. It means only that the line of reasoning of the Preacher has its flaws.

One can say the Jews have a better claim. One cannot say the Palestinians have no claim.