Danny Wakil, Billinudgel
Warren Kennedy’s reply to my letter tries to discredit the well-known facts. This is typical of the apologists for the Hamas terrorist group and people who try to rewrite history.
Mr Kennedy disingenuously claims that the peace offers by Israel have been a sham. In two of many examples, both Israeli prime ministers Barak (1999–2001) and Olmert (2006–2008) made generous and comprehensive offers to the Palestinians. One included 97 per cent net of West Bank, with the Arab neighbourhoods of East Jerusalem becoming the capital of the Palestinian state.
The offer included a right of return for the Palestinian refugees to their own state, with a fund of $30 billion internationally for compensation, repatriation, resettlement and rehabilitation costs. In his response, Arafat rejected the deal and Clinton was furious with Arafat ,blaming him for the lost opportunity.
Mr Kennedy then goes on to talk about Gaza. As he well knows, Israel uprooted her army and all settlements, leaving Gaza completely in 2005 with Hamas soon taking over and brutally oppressing the Palestinian population. While the blockade is clearly not good for either side, Hamas maintains a constant state of war with Israel, so any other country would do the same.
Kennedy then disputes the fact that Jews have always lived in the territory. Not only were Jews indigenous to the region but during the period of the Mandate it was the Jewish population that was known as ‘Palestinians’. My family survived the 1929 massacre of Jews, as well as the pact that the Mufti of Jerusalem was making with Hitler to eliminate the Palestinian Jews, the 1948 war of independence which was expected to be a complete massacre of all Jews when the five Arab nation armies invaded the newly formed Israel etc. The fact that there was an influx after WWII is beside the point.
I love Australia, Israelis and Palestinians. I support peace efforts such as the Australian AFL peace team consisting of 13 Israeli and 13 Palestinians who competed as a united team for the AFL International cup, making Australian sporting history. What do you love, Warren Kennedy?