SHAFAQNA – Open Discussions in association with Gulf Cultural Club hosted a seminar titled:The Balfour Declaration: A Century of crisis with speakers focusing on the role of Christian Zionism in validating the unjust land grab perpetrated by Zionists and the current poverty and fear- stricken state of the Palestinian people robbed of freedom, human rights and their country.
On 2nd November 1917 Arthur Balfour delivered his undertaking that Britain would support the creation of homeland for the Jews in Palestine who constituted 5 percent of the population. A century of endless suffering had begun.
The era of colonialism emerged with disastrous consequences. Thirty years later, the UN issued Resolution 181 to partition Palestine into Jewish and Arab entities. Today, the whole of Palestine is under Israeli control, while the Palestinians have remained destitute, scattered in the diaspora with no hope of immediate repatriation. Instead of apologising for this historic fault, the present UK establishment remains committed to an entity that has only caused human misery, and served no real benefit for the British or Arab people.
The Balfour Declaration has now shaped the UK’s foreign policy in the Middle East for 100 years while the British people have become hostage to this unfair deal. Reverend Steven Sizer explored ‘why there is still such a close relationship between the Christian right, the political establishment and the State of Israel?’ He says the answer lies in part in the “historical and religious factors that not only led to the Balfour Declaration, but also it’s progidy, the most influential and destructive movement today – Christian Zionism.”
Dr Haider pointed out that ninety percent of Palestinian land remains illegally occupied. He says” There is no inadequate sanitation built for the Palestinians in Gaza – the largest open-air prison in the world. The Palestinian are only allowed four hours of access to water every three days. Over eight hundred thousand olive trees were destroyed to kill off one of their vital economic resources.” The apartheid policies against Palestinians inside the Israeli entity, of course, also bare witness to the other face of Zionist inhumanity- pure racism. Paradoxically the Holocaust is something that should make Jewish Zionists pause to reflect on how they have become like the very oppressor that perpetrated crimes against their people in Europe. They ought to be the last people on earth to be as they have become in Israel – utterly barbaric.
Reverend Sizer condemned the actions of the present British politicians who he said ” were acting today in exactly the same way as Balfour had done” and was dismayed that Theresa May, the British Prime Minister, had recently declared her pride in the Balfour Declaration and Britain’s role in establishing the disputed state of Israel which has “been the subject of more UN resolutions than any other country in the world”. He suggests that the injustice against Palestinians have made Britain and the USA the focus of hatred from the Islamic world which has mow manifested itself in terrorism in mainland Western capitals too.
Dr Haider went on to sound alarm bells of the growing signs of yet another catastrophic impending Arab – Israeli war amid the embers of the Iraqi Syrian conflicts with Daesh which are alkeged to bare the hallmark of British and Zionist divide and rule stategies.
Turning to solutions the panel suggested that boycotting Israeli goods through BDS was the most effective strategy. Pressuring the international community to stop all support of the Israeli rogue State no matter how futile an exercise also needed to be persued even more vigorously.