Saturday, December 17, 2011

'Remembrance Day for Jews would help peace'

Update : please write to the President of the State of Israel, Shimon Peres, to say that you support Professor Ada Aharoni's idea of a Day to remember the uprooting of the Jewish communities of the Arab world. Email

"The moment has arrived for us to mark the destruction of the Jewish communities in Arab countries with a special memorial day," says Professor Ada Aharoni. Dr Aharoni told Yediot Haifa in an interview published on 16 December that she had 'no doubt' such a day would advance the peace process.

Egyptian-born Dr Aharoni said: "I have no doubt if the facts were made clear it can progress the peace process. Nowadays the Palestinians are getting more difficult about their 'right of return': I have no doubt that if they knew there were more Jewish refugees, who had to leave their homes in the dead of night leaving all their property behind, it would be easier for them to understand that they will not be permitted to 'return'.

"We Jews attach great significance to remembering the Exodus from Egypt and ancient Jewish history. We should also remember the Second Exodus (in modern times)."

Dr Aharoni has written to both the President of the State of Israel, Shimon Peres, and the Prime Minister, Bibi Netanyahu, suggesting that Israel should declare such a memorial day.

Please sign petition

Aharoni seeks approval for 'Jewish Nakba' Day


sylvia said...

Great idea. I don't think, however, that it is for Israel to declare such a memorial day, but for the Jews themselves through their Sephardic organizations. After all, all these people didn't go to Israel. Canada has absorbed a lot of them, Switzerland did, and many went to France, England and Belgium, not to mention all those who emigrated to South America, wherever they had a contact or an opportunity.

Another question is what is going to be the character of that memorial day: mournful? joyful?

sylvia said...

It should be marked internationally, on the same day.

Rabbanit Ruth Alfasi said...

BS'D: That's a great idea, but I do think it should be celebrated from Eretz Israel - much because the exodus from Arab lands was in reaction to the creation of the State of Israel. Some of these Arab countries made life very difficult to the remaining Jews once Israel was established so the existence of Israel isn't a neutral factor.

As well, we all share in Eretz haKodesh, anytime we want to assert our "right of return" so the centrality of Israel should be underscored. I think it would do a lot, though, for building a sense of unity amongst Jews here in Israel, especially since Sephardic Jews were often faced with (and continue to be) treated as second-class citizens.

Anonymous said...

I beg to disagree with Ada. A remembrance day would only push ARabs to do something rash.
that is my personal opinion.But I am certain a lot of you will disagree!That's the beauty of democracy!
sultana latifa

Ada Aharoni said...

Dear Sultana Latifa,

From my experience, whenever I teach or lecture on "The Uprooting of the Jews from Arab Lands in the mid-twentieth century" before Arab and Palestinian students, the reaction is "We thought you Jews were smart, how come you have the answer to the Arab - Israeli Conflict, and you keep it in your drawers for more than 60 years!" When I asked them why they wanted this subject to be made know the anwer was and still is: "It saves face, then we are not the only underdogs, or victims! It saves our honor, and for an Arab honor is the most important thing! With these historical facts, we can pave the road to reconciliation."
Dr. Ada Aharoni

Anonymous said...

no, no and no!!!Honour will not feed the thousands of Arab refugees,only education excluding Jew hatred and the road to recognising others as equal human beings not enemies
suzy vidal