I first met Issa Nakhleh more than fifteen years ago while he was still busily researching for his two volume "Encyclopedia of the Palestine Problem". I learnt first hand of his personal history, a palestinian, a refugee, a man who had lost everything he had had. His house, his law office, his apartment house in Jerusalem and a banana plantation were, as he describes "usurped by the Zionists and Israeli war criminals ". A man's roots had been cut.
Issa fought all his life for a peaceful resolution to the many problems facing the Palestinian people, who are scattered all over the globe today. In fact, after he told me his personal history, I was surprised how peaceful yet at the same time determined he went after his business of documenting the history of his people, insisting that the political process, including especially the United Nations, should ultimately give the Palestinians back their homeland. Writes Mr. Nakhleh: The greatest Zionist and Israeli crime against me and six million other Palestinians is that they have deprived us of living in our ancestral homeland, Palestine, as citizens of our independent undivided Palestinian State.
Unfortunately it is not reason that determines the development of the world. Current Israeli politics is ignorant of its own past, while many of its leaders are all too ready to blame the rest of the world for anti-semitism when it pleases them. Geopolitical strategic thinking determines what the current world powers are willing to undertake in the matter — and that is not a lot for the Palestinians.