History is the most important foundation of any culture. It teaches us what was, it teaches us about our roots, where we come from, what mistakes were made, and what we should aim to become. Every action we take comes with forethought of similar ideas and what possible consequences we can expect.
And yet this week, we have seen history failing and repeating itself- and not for the first time. History is sadly full of genocides, episodes of ethnic cleansing, fascism, tyranny, and countless wars. Where the Great War didn’t accomplish whatever the world was looking to achieve, the Second World War happened and ended with the double suicide of Hitler and his mate Goebbels, but not before shocking the world with the most virulent form of ethnic cleansing known to mankind- the Jewish Holocaust. Some six million Jews were killed and several others escaped German-occupied territories in a state of emergency. Truly horrific way to have to live for decades against the backdrop of antisemitic sentiment with no inkling of what a future might look like, whether they would be captured in a concentration camp, or if through some miracle they would be able to escape the regime that was literally ejecting them out of their system.
And yet here we are, history in the making, where Arabs in Palestine are being made to leave their homes, literally being ejected out of the system, bombed, captured and tortured, amidst Zionist claims of the land. Where the Jews have fought for a Jewish state in Palestine, so too have the Arabs to not be so brutally discharged from their homes.
How has morality become so diluted that the irony in Jews dispelling Arabs from Palestine has become so lost on them? Modern history will tell us about those who participated in 9/11 or the ones who created ISIS, but why do we forget that part of history where Muslims in North African territories occupied by Germany rescued the Jews whilst putting their own lives in considerable danger? How has Israel become so barbaric in its approach towards Palestine? Why has the international community turned a blind eye to this? Where countries can get so heavily involved in the Iraqs and the Afghanistans of the world, why is justice for Palestinians a far cry?
The Israeli rhetoric is ridiculously similar to the Nazi rhetoric in 1945- when does it become too much? At what point does the international community step in to say that this is not okay? We built Jewish museums and memorials, we wrote books about the struggle, we immortalised Anne Frank, we understand that the genocide that happened in the 1940s was wrong-so at what point do we acknowledge that what’s been happening with Arabs in Palestine since 1948 is also wrong?
History has witnessed the downfall of oppressors, but it has also witnessed disasters prior to the downfall. Until the idea of oppression exists, oppression cannot end because nothing can kill an idea. Unless the idea of oppression becomes overpowered by the idea of justice, the world cannot become a better place to live in- and this requires more conversation around justice and more awareness about the truth.