Husam Khader is a PLC member, and the chairperson of the Palestinian refugee rights defense committee. He was arrested by the Israeli occupation forces at his house in Balata refugee camp near Nablus on 17 March 2003. He is still being held in Hadarim prison inside Israel. This article first appeared in Arabic in Haq al-Awda 10-11 (2005). Translation by Nimr Awaini
Including the language of return in our literature, culture and school curriculum is essential to ending the Nakba. Those who think that any solution will do are either living an illusion, or just ignorant of the ability of Palestinians to resist.
Many have written about the Palestinian Nakba as a concept and as a major historical event with severe negative impacts on the economic, social and demographic aspects of the Palestinian situation. The Nakba is not necessarily linked to a specific date, even though is normally associated with 1948. In fact, the Nakba is a complicated historical process: it required prior planning and, at the same time, its consequences remain to this day.
The elements of the Palestinian Nakba first came to light during the late nineteenth century, i.e., since the First Zionist Congress, the Balfour Declaration and subsequent Jewish immigration to Palestine. This was accompanied by Jewish propaganda, including the slogan of Palestine as a land without people. The British Mandate facilitated the creation of a Jewish state and the transfer of Palestinian land through new laws that transformed the landholding system from collective to individual ownership.