Mukhriz: Remembering Nakba & “We blew our chances, when we had it!”

Co-ordinator of Peace Malaysia Dato’ Mukhriz Mahathir, speaking on an event to commemorate “Remembering Nakba” this morning in Petaling Jaya.

Nakba: 60 Years in the Subjugation of the Palestinian People.

1. Assalaamualaikum W.B.T, and Good Morning.

First of all I would like to extend my appreciation to the International Movement for a JUST World (JUST) for collaborating with PEACE Malaysia in organising this public forum to commemorate the ‘Day of Catastrophe of Nakba’. My sincere thanks also goes to all the eminent speakers at this forum as well as to Helen Ng for her poetry recital. I would also like to welcome our guests and audience who truly understand the gravity of the problem and empathise with the hardships endured by the Palestinian people.

2. I would like to start off by saying that the Malaysian people are indeed benevolent and large-hearted. The Palestinian cause has always been a struggle shared by Malaysians. Muslim-Malays and non-Malays alike are aware of the plight of the Palestinians and have been steadfast in their support to free these brave people from the tyranny of Israeli oppression and the arrogation of the Palestinian homeland by the Zionists. Heretofore, perhaps the single most identifiable struggle that in one way or another links the entire world to its legitimate struggle is the Palestinian cause. The never-ending conflict in the Middle Eastern region of the world has the Palestinian conflict as the backdrop to ensuing hostilities. Approximately 1.3 billion Muslims across the globe view the Palestinian conflict as one that Muslims are obliged to support their Palestinian brethren. Hitherto, the world is ever more polarised along religious lines. The so-called war on terrorism that puts Malaysia and the South East Asian Region as the ‘Second Front of the War on Terror’ according to the White House is in reality viewed with deep-seated suspicion and anger that this war is nothing more that an unofficial war declared upon Islam. The popular saying that ‘One man’s terrorist is another’s freedom fighter’ is still true in today’s context. The proponents of state terrorism against Muslim nations and communities are swift to unleash their savage weaponry in killing terrorists but are intent to ignore the root causes and reasons that lead to terrorism. What a wretched life it must be to motivate any person to blow themselves up. Who in their right mind would want to commit such an act if not for the desperation and despair inflicted upon them?

3. The real axis of evil has as its head the Zionist state with the body of the White House. The Zionist agenda which has been carried out by successive U.S. Presidents to date can be seen in the euphoric and wholehearted support of the 60th anniversary of the founding of Israel. Media reports use the term ‘rebirth’ of Israel as if to omit the fact that the lands are occupied lands at the cost of Palestinian blood and suffering. Today Israel has an astounding population of 5.5 million people. The biggest concentration of Jews other than the United States. The Zionists are organising a three days conference to be held soon to discuss the future of the Jews and Israel. The event boasts the brightest and best brains in the world. Henry Kissinger, Tony Blair and George W. Bush are among the notable invitees. These personalities however aren’t going to celebrate Nakba. The reasons are obvious and well documented.

4. Israel and its allies have never shown any remorse for the 1.4 million Palestinians that were forcibly driven out of their homes to seek refuge in neighbouring Arab states. The end of the 1948 Arab-Israeli war saw Israel controlling 77 percent of the territory of Mandatory Palestine, while the West Bank and the Gaza Strip fell to Jordan and Egypt respectively. This period in Palestinian History in known as al-Nakba or the catastrophe. The birth of the Palestinian refugee problem is a testament to this sad state of affairs. More than one million Palestinians are stateless, with no choice but to live in squalid makeshift camps in the region

Recently declassified Zionist documents points to the unanimous agreement among the Zionist leadership at the time that supported the Peel recommendations of 1937 in favour of the ‘transfer’ of Palestinian-Arabs out of the areas of the Zionist state-to-be. Ben Gurion is documented to have stated that ‘’I support compulsory (Palestinian Arab) population transfer. I do not see in it anything immoral….’’ “The transfer of Arabs is easier than the transfer of any other [people]. There are Arabs states

around . . . And it is clear that if the [Palestinian] Arabs are transferred this would improve their situation and not the opposite.” Since, none of the members of Jewish Agency Executive opposed this idea, Moshe Sharett, then the director of the Jewish Agency’s Political Department cast the policy to stone. He said the “Transfer could be the crowning achievements, the final stage in the development of [our] policy, but certainly not the point of departure. By [speaking publicly and prematurely] we could mobilizing vast forces against the matter and cause it to fail, in advance.”

Israel has maintained a consistent policy to drive the Palestinians out of their homes to this present day.

5. For your information, as of 2007 these are among the refugee camps known to us. Many more are undocumented.

Palestinian Refugee Camps Listing (مخيمات الاجئين الفلسطينين)

Posted on January 29, 2007





‘Amari (الامعري)
‘Aqbat Jabir (عقبة جبر)

al-‘Arrub (العروب)

‘Askar (عسكر)

‘Ayda (عيده)
Beach (الشاطئ)
Balatah (بلاطه)

Bayt Jibrin (بيت جبرين)
Brazil ( البرازيل)
al-Burayj ( البريج)
Dayr ‘Ammar (دير عمّار)
Dayr al-Balah (دير البلح)
Deheishe (الدهيشه)
al-Fari’ah (الفارعه)
al-Fawwar (الفوّار)
Jabalya (جباليه)
al-Jalazoun (الجلزون)
Jinin -مُخيّم جنين
Khan Yunis (خان يونس)
al-Maghazi (المغازي)
Nur Shams R.C. – نور شمس
al-Nusayrat ( النصيرات)
Qalandya (قلنديه)
Rafah (رفح)
Refugee Camp No. 1 ( عين بيت الماء/رقم 1)
Shu’fat ( شعفاط)

Tulkarm R.C. – طولكرم
Tall al-Sultan ( تل ّالسلطان)

al-Baq’a (البقعه)
al-Husn (الحصن)

al-Hussein (الحسين)

Irbid (إربد)

Jarash ( جرش)

Marka/Shnillar (ماركه/شنللّر)

Souf (سوف)

al-Talbiyyah (الطالبيّه)

Wehdat (الوحدات)

Zarqa ( الزرقاء)

al-Badawi (البداوي)
al-Bass (البصّ)
Burj al-Barajneih ( برج البراجنه)
al-Burj al-Shamali (برج الشمالي)

Ein el Helweh(عين الحلوه)
Jisr al-Basha(جسر الباش/مدمّر)
Mar el-Yas (مار الياس)
Miyah wa Miyah (ميه وميه)

Nahr al-Barid (نهر البارد)
al-Rashidiyeh (الراشديّه)

Shatila (مخيّم شاتيله)
Tall al-Za’atr (تلّ الزعتر/مدمّر)
Wavell (مخيم الجليل/ ويفل)

al-Nayrab (النيرب)
Yarmuk (


6. Brothers and Sisters, PEACE Malaysia is of the opinion that the atrocities committed against the Palestinian peoples is nothing short of ethnic cleansing. We have seen the Western Judeo-Christian entity move against perpetrators of genocide when it is in their interest but wilfully deny responsibility for the very same acts committed by them against the Palestinians.

7. Allow me to quote Johann Hari, an award-winning journalist and columnist for the British broadsheet the Independent whom observed to the effect that ‘’whenever I try to mouth these words, a remembered smell fills my nostrils. It is the smell of shit. Across the occupied West Bank, raw untreated sewage is pumped every day out of the Jewish settlements, along large metal pipes, straight onto Palestinian land. From there, it can enter the groundwater and the reservoirs, and become a poison.

Standing near one of these long, stinking brown-and-yellow rivers of waste recently, the local chief medical officer, Dr Bassam Said Nadi, explained to me: “Recently there were very heavy rains, and the shit started to flow into the reservoir that provides water for this whole area. I knew that if we didn’t act, people would die. We had to alert everyone not to drink the water for over a week, and distribute bottles. We were lucky it was spotted. Next time…” He shook his head in fear.

The Zionists have gone far beyond forced occupation and acquisition of Palestinian land but are intent to extinguish the Palestinian people completely by means of violent attrition and silent ethnic cleansing.

7. In its most recent damning report The Al Mezan Center for Human Rights which is a non-governmental organization based in the Jabalia Palestinian refugee camp in the Gaza Strip, cited that the number of victims killed by Israeli Occupation Forces (IOF) has increased amid continued escalation of its attacks on, and incursions into, the Gaza Strip recently. According to Al Mezan Centre’s monitoring and documentation, IOF stepped up their human rights violations and committed breaches of international humanitarian law (IHL) systematically in the Gaza Strip. According to Al Mezan’s statistics, 69 Palestinians have been killed by IOF in the Gaza Strip since the start of April 2008. Of them, 20 were children and one was a woman. This brings the toll of Gazans killed by IOF since the beginning of 2008 to 316, including 62 children and 16 women. During the same period the IOF carried out 30 incursions into the Gaza Strip. During these incursions, 127 Palestinians were detained; 17 of them are still under detention. Furthermore, IOF razed 372 dunams of agricultural land, and destroyed 15 homes.

Ladies and Gentlemen, our Palestinian brethren have suffered immensely and their suffering must come to an end. This year, as George W. Bush makes a last ditch attempt to invade Iran after a successful war at murdering Iraqis, the prospect of peace in Palestine is far from reach. Zionist interests cannot allow for true peace to flourish. If at all peace is to be achieved it must be on Israel’s terms. And so we are witnesses to the many half-hearted designs of attrition from the Oslo accords, Camp David negotiations and to the current non- peace road map hurriedly and insidiously being advanced by Bush.

8. Thus, the question is how can we help the Palestinians? It seems that we are powerless to do anything meaningful. I believe that we as an Ummah that’s ever growing in Iman and influence, can push for greater momentum with our governments to safeguard the sanctity of our religion and protect Muslims under persecution wherever they maybe. As Muslims we must stand against evildoing and injustice as part of our religious obligation. As Muslims we are witnesses against each other here on this earth before the appointed time when we are called to account for our omissions and sins to Allah S.W.T

However, the Palestinian struggle is by no means exclusively a Muslim type of issue. Any right thinking human being that cherishes peace and abhors the suffering of his fellow man must object to the Israeli aggression against the Palestinian people. It maybe of interest to you to know that I had the opportunity to meet a rabbi from the coalition of orthodox Jews who call themselves Neturei Karta International. Their slogan is Jews united against Zionism. Last month, Neturei Karta gathered in Teaneck, New Jersey to protest during a street fair to “celebrate” the 60th anniversary of the creation of the Zionist state of “Israel.”

Thus, we must pressure our respective governments to take up for the Palestinian cause. In Malaysia, we must strive to maintain interest and inspire effective action among ordinary citizenry and the government. Any action that directly or indirectly contributes to evildoing and harms Muslims must be put to a stop. For example, recently Halliburton Corporation, the icon of the neo-conservative establishment that served as the prime mover for the war in Iraq and the subtle or overt persecution of Muslims worldwide began business operations in Malaysia. How can we invite with open arms a corporation that sees as its legitimate right- war to advance its hegemonic goals to disastrous consequences for Muslims everywhere? It is a derision of everything we hold sacred.

9. Ladies and Gentlemen, there is light at the end of the tunnel. Already, we see the human costs to the war in Iraq for the invading American forces. Not to mention the decline of the US dollar which is nothing more than fiat money. The fullest extent of the damage on the U.S economy is yet to transpire. The U.S government is only precipitating its collapse by waging this war against the innocent people of Iraq. Similarly, Israel can never be a secure homeland for the Jews if it is built at the expense of the Palestinians. How much longer do Israelis want to live in fear? The heavy blow dealt to the Israeli Defence Forces in the war against Hezbollah in Lebanon in 2006 shows the weakness of the Israeli government and the Zionist doctrine.

Ladies and gentlemen, I truly believe that there are more of us, people who want peace and harmony to prevail in this world. I am confident that if we stick together and continue our collective concerted efforts, we can change the world and overcome evil in all its forms.

Thank you,



Speaking to reporters later, Mukhriz said “We wasted the three years when we held the OIC Chairmanship to do something meaningful. We could have taken the lead on this (Palestinian) issue then but we threw that chance away by neglecting and uncompassionate apathy”.

He added “The sense of hope for OIC when we took over has been replaced with indignation towards Malaysia for dereliction of duty” in a disappointed tone, when asked about Malaysia’s role in the Palestinian Issue. “From now onwards, each time our Government stands up for Islam and Palestine hereon, the people will ask why we did not do anything when we were the Chairman of OIC?”.

Within Malaysia’s tenure as the OIC Chairman, Israel incurred into Lebanon’s territory in July 2006 and created massive devastation to the people and properties and again into Gaza, early this year.

Published in: on May 10, 2008 at 18:34  Comments (5)