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Palestinians just want to live normal lives, says eminent Israeli professor

Over 300 people packed into the Cheese and Grain to hear a lecture from an Israeli history professor on Tuesday 30th September.

The organisers, Frome Friends of Palestine said, “Some people had travelled more than 50 miles, for this was no ordinary lecturer. Ilan Pappe, Israel’s foremost and most forthright historian, knows more about the background to the Israeli occupation of Palestine than almost anyone.

“He is a scholar whose has dared to challenge his country’s comforting foundation-myths with books such as ‘The Ethnic Cleansing of Palestine’. Hounded from his job at the University of Haifa, he now heads the European Centre for Palestine Studies at the University of Exeter.”

He told the audience, “Zionism is built on the illusion that the Palestinian population would somehow disappear, or that they would continue to exist in limbo for ever and the world wouldn’t notice. But they haven’t disappeared, and the world is starting to take notice, as the size of tonight’s audience indicates.

“What can we do?  – We need to change the language we use to discuss the situation. We need to stop talking about ‘two state solutions’ and ‘peace talks’ between opposing sides. Instead, we need to talk about ending apartheid and racial discrimination.

“We need to talk about equal opportunities and democracy for all the people who live between the river Jordan and the Mediterranean Sea. People want to live normal lives. Palestinians just want to live normal lives, like everyone else.”

The organisers continued, “It was an inspiring evening. There were Christians, Muslims and Jews in the audience, people of all faiths and none. All shades of political persuasion were there, from Communist to UKIP; there were teenagers and there were people in their nineties.”

“One attendee remarked afterwards that they were more passionate about Palestine than ever now.”