Hostility between the Jewish-Israelis and Arab-Palestinians
is a unique subject that dates back over two-thousand years. The continual disagreement presented itself during Aurora University’s “Arab Palestinians in Israel” discussion on Friday, April 8.
The regions people, Jewish-Israelis and Arab-Palestinians,
live in a constant state of uncertainty and struggle with ongoing questions regarding their national identity. In the course of one-hour he illustrated why Israel’s delicate demographics exist and how the confrontation evolved since 1948.
Professor Elie Rekhess is a scholar of the political history
of the Arabs in Israel and identifies himself with a wide-range of groups in relation to the Arab-Palestinian issue. Rekhess is of Jewish-Israeli upbringing, born 1945 in Haifa, Israel which questions his objectivity given his emotional attachment.
Oddly enough, a male attendee also grew up in Haifa, Israel
but identifies with an Arab-Palestinian upbringing. Unfortunately, I couldn’t catch his name, but his opposing point of view didn’t go unnoticed. It provided an addition perspective that would have otherwise gone unmentioned.
“Your [Rekhess] narrative is purely the Israeli-Jewish point-of-view.” He justified this in mentioning the “clever way of starting with 1948, because you [Rekhess] don’t have to deal with the fact that we, Palestinian-Arabs, were the vast majority in what was Palestine for over two-thousand years.”
Audiences must be able to identify: “Is this from a Jewish
perspective or an Arab perspective?” responds Rekhess, “If you [AU] had an Arab representative here speaking on the same issue, I’m quite sure you would get a different perspective.”
This man’s anger and frustration was clear, claiming
Jewish-Immigrant from Europe “broke in” and “were enforced upon us and destroyed the democracies of Palestine.” He informed the audience how the Arab-Palestinians became the minority, “The minority demographics that you’re [Rekhess] talking about was a majority, and within 30 years it became the minority.”
Amy Vidovic, a prospective AU student, agreed “his [Rekhess]
level of credibility shrunk when he [Arab-Palestinian spokesman] expressed the alternative point of view.” This also introduced the topic of objectivity, and what it means to be objective.
“What I do is expose the issue” said Elie Rekhess, “there is no right and no wrong here.” He also discussed the inevitability of bias
view point and how its nearly impossible to remain neutral. “There is no scientific objectivity here” concludes Elie, “I can assure you that no one can be 100% objective.”
“I really grasped the situations extremity” said 22-year-old
Amy Vidovic. “His Venn diagram, with the three overlapping circles, was really helpful” continues Vidovic, “it helped visualize how the two co-exist, but yet how separated they are.”