I hate to write this but I firmly believe that Israel, by and large, wants the Palestinians to disappear and are therefore deliberately colonising the West Bank (there are more than 200 settlements there; one settlement has more than 100,000 settlers living in it). Jews are invited to come to live in the West Bank from every country on earth. There are close to 400,000 settlers living in the Occupied Territories and this number is increasing. Settlers live freely without any of the curtailments of the Palestinians. They carry guns, drive on special roads and menace the Palestinians. The first week I was there a fast-driving settler hit a couple crossing the highway in my village; the driver didn’t stop, the wife died the next day, nothing was done … for 43 years this has been going on.
I realise that the burden of my account is at odds with the information supplied by the skilled Israeli public relations officers and government ministers. I have written about things I have experienced first hand. I have included a few historical facts to try to explain why the Palestinians are so aggrieved.
I would like to say that I was very privileged to have been able to share in the lives of the Palestinians. I was fortunate to be able to spend many hours teaching English to them. I was surrounded with kindness, warmth, sincerity, humour, hospitality.
Many of my Palestinian friends said that they wanted me to tell people in other countries that they want to live in peace with the Israelis. I know that many good Jewish people wish to live in peace with the Palestinians. However, until the international community, especially the United States and including Australia, condemn outright the occupation and the policies of the Israeli Government, there is no likelihood of peace.
After having supported a homeland for Jewish people in the past, I now find myself duty bound to support the Palestinians’ claim for even-handed justice and a home in which they can live without oppression. Only then will it be possible for the people in the Middle East to be able to begin to live in peace.
Discuss in our Forums
See what other readers are saying about this article!
Click here to read & post comments.
6 posts so far.
About the Author
Marty Morrison has been an activist in human rights and social justice since her early years in the 1930s. Her interest in Palestine goes back to the time when, as a young woman, she was a Methodist missionary in Singapore. Marty has been a teacher of English for 60 years to foreign students in Australia and overseas countries, including China, the UK, the US, Indonesia, Thailand, Malaysia and Cambodia. The wife of former diplomat and Defence Minister in the Whitlam Government, Bill Morrison, Marty has spent the last 10 years in Australia working for "a fair go" for asylum seekers and refugees. She has recently returned from teaching in the West Bank and supporting the Palestinian people in peaceful protests against their oppressive treatment by Israel.