Jerusalem and the Continuing Nakba
Shaykh Jarrah
Dayr Yasin
ethnic cleansing
settler colonialism
Black Panthers
Black Lives Matter

The author recounts the experience of his own family who, along with the majority of Palestinians, were victims of the ethnic cleansing of 1948. He views Israel’s plans to forcefully displace Palestinians from neighborhoods in the eastern part of Jerusalem, such as Shaykh Jarrah, accompanied by home demolitions, as in Silwan, through the lens of continued ethnic cleansing of Palestinians to establish a majority Jewish State. He links the continuing attempts to Judaize Jerusalem and the accompanying repression of Palestinians to the racist nature of Zionism which extends even to Israeli Jews of non-European origins. Coincidentally, the author was incarcerated with Moroccan Jews who grew up in the same Musrara neighborhood from which his mother’s family was ethnically cleansed in 1948. Musrara became a Jerusalem ghetto of North African Jews, some of whom went on to form the Israeli Black Panthers. Through his narration of his prison experience and what he learned from incarcerated Arab Jews, Farah illustrates that racism is endemic to the Israeli political system of settler colonialism.

Author biography: 

Philip Farah was born in Jerusalem in 1952 and like the majority of the Palestinian population, his family were forced to leave their ancestral homes and towns. In 1978 he immigrated to the United States and earned a PhD in environmental economics from the University of New Mexico. He currently works as an economist in Washington, DC, and lives in Vienna, Virginia.. Farah is a founding member of the Washington Interfaith Alliance for Middle East Peace (founded in 2000), and the Palestinian Christian Alliance for Peace.