What are your thoughts on a right of return for expelled and historically displaced peoples?

Futurist

Ad Honoris
May 2014
24,534
SoCal
What are your thoughts on a right of return for expelled and historically displaced peoples? For instance, a right of return for Palestinian refugees into Israel or a right of return for Circassians into Russia? Also, should any distinctions be made between a people that started a war and subsequently lost this war and got expelled (such as the Germans) and a people who did not seek any provocations but were nevertheless provoked, compelled to fight, and subsequently got expelled (such as the Palestinians and maybe the Circassians)? Indeed, when do you think that a right of return for expelled and historically displaced peoples is acceptable? For instance, what about a right of return for Jews to Palestine in the decades before 1948? Was that acceptable? Or was that a violation of Palestinian Arab national self-determination? Similarly, is a right of return for Palestinian refugees into Israel today a violation of Israeli Jewish national self-determination? What about a right of return for Circassians into Russia? Is that a violation of Russian national self-determination?

Any thoughts on all of this?
 

Tulius

Ad Honorem
May 2016
6,765
Portugal
What are your thoughts on a right of return for expelled and historically displaced peoples? For instance, a right of return for Palestinian refugees into Israel or a right of return for Circassians into Russia? Also, should any distinctions be made between a people that started a war and subsequently lost this war and got expelled (such as the Germans) and a people who did not seek any provocations but were nevertheless provoked, compelled to fight, and subsequently got expelled (such as the Palestinians and maybe the Circassians)? Indeed, when do you think that a right of return for expelled and historically displaced peoples is acceptable? For instance, what about a right of return for Jews to Palestine in the decades before 1948? Was that acceptable? Or was that a violation of Palestinian Arab national self-determination? Similarly, is a right of return for Palestinian refugees into Israel today a violation of Israeli Jewish national self-determination? What about a right of return for Circassians into Russia? Is that a violation of Russian national self-determination?

Any thoughts on all of this?
Every right to return has a timeline, after two or three generations it loses its true meaning, since the new generations never knew their ancestor's home and it becomes a myth.
 

Tulius

Ad Honorem
May 2016
6,765
Portugal
What if those new generations are still homeless?
That is a difficult and tricky question. But that could lead us to other what is “homeless”: Parias? People without citizenship?

Today that is difficult to happen, since all persons should be a citizens of a state. That state is their home. Even so it seems that we have more refugees today than ever. Meaning that they have a home, but they can’t go there, for security reasons. That means that often they don’t have anywhere to go! Surely they must have to be somewhere. If is the place of their ancestors or not, not sure if that is the most relevant. There can exist a return myth. But often difficult to fulfil and that can bring more problems than solutions.
 
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tomar

Ad Honoris
Jan 2011
14,383
It is a Pandorra s box

For example what if a person moved in yesterday and was expelled today? Does he and his descendants get a claim ?

Personnally i think it should be limited to persons who actually were born and had citizenship in the area under consideration... thus descendants and passers by would be automatically exluded.
I am sure each one of us has some ancestors who where expelled from somewhere
 

Futurist

Ad Honoris
May 2014
24,534
SoCal
It is a Pandorra s box

For example what if a person moved in yesterday and was expelled today? Does he and his descendants get a claim ?

Personnally i think it should be limited to persons who actually were born and had citizenship in the area under consideration... thus descendants and passers by would be automatically exluded.
I am sure each one of us has some ancestors who where expelled from somewhere
By that logic, should Jews whose ancestors haven't actually lived in Palestine for two millennia have actually been allowed to move to Palestine in the 19th and 20th centuries?
 
Jul 2019
1,205
New Jersey
Like Tomar said, it was a "Pandora's box".
Of course, we Jews are much happier now that we're not at the mercies of nations who have a 1,500 year long track record of persecution and butchery. The Palestinian Arabs - not as much. It's a complicated question without a clear-cut answer. What alternative was there to the state of Israel? The fact that even in the enlightened 20th century (and in cultured Germany, no less!) Jews and Roma were rounded up and butchered wholesale just goes to how that dispossessed nations are never safe. As such, they are not only justified, but are actually obligated (for their descendants' sake) to try and reclaim a homeland. But then you have new dispossessed people.

What's the answer? I don't know. I'm not sure there is one. This, along with the question of "just war", is one of those problems which highlight the yawning gap between what we wish the world was and what it actually is.
 

Tulius

Ad Honorem
May 2016
6,765
Portugal
Of course, we Jews are much happier now that we're not at the mercies of nations who have a 1,500 year long track record of persecution and butchery. The Palestinian Arabs - not as much. It's a complicated question without a clear-cut answer. What alternative was there to the state of Israel? The fact that even in the enlightened 20th century (and in cultured Germany, no less!) Jews and Roma were rounded up and butchered wholesale just goes to how that dispossessed nations are never safe. As such, they are not only justified, but are actually obligated (for their descendants' sake) to try and reclaim a homeland. But then you have new dispossessed people.

What's the answer? I don't know. I'm not sure there is one. This, along with the question of "just war", is one of those problems which highlight the yawning gap between what we wish the world was and what it actually is.
Even if I have a different perspective from yours, I also don’t know the answer, or better, I am almost sure that there isn’t a perfect one.

In the concrete case of the Jews, the formation of the state of Israel increased the number of problems (and tension) in the region, and not only due to the displacement of the Palestinians.

Naturally, after all these years, the displaced Palestinians can’t get back to the places their ancestors were, the places changed and because we would have another problem: where we would put the Israelis?

I also don’t see the necessity to create a nation of Gypsies. Most of them, if not all, already have citizenship in some country. The ones that I knew consider themselves Portuguese. Similar for the Jews in Portugal, I don’t see them as a part of another nation, they are Portuguese, I see them as a religious group, as many others religious groups, even if they have their particular characteristics, due their history and set of beliefs.

As for the question: What alternative was for the state of Israel? The answers are different according to the timeline, the one that we could had before 1948, is surely totally different from the one we have today. Even if I understood that your question was addressed to the pre-1948 situation. Today in political terms the question is meaningless. We can't change the past to find a better path. The state exists and it’s there for more than 70 years.

In a more generic answer, I don’t think that there needs to be a specific country to every specific religious group that we have in the world. Most specially today that there are countries that separate the state from the religion. That would lead us to the necessity to have a country for Catholics, for Lutherans, Calvinists, Mormons, Sikhs, Scientologists, Sunnis, Shias, Buddhists, Hindus… etc.… and even for the atheists, and for the agnostics… basically it would be a mess if every religion of the planet would want their homeland.

A final note, even if this thread is under “Controversial History” it is not a historical theme, even if it has historical roots. We are looking to the present and future, not to the past, so it is much more a political, ideological, sociological theme.
 

pugsville

Ad Honoris
Oct 2010
10,098
Of course, we Jews are much happier now that we're not at the mercies of nations who have a 1,500 year long track record of persecution and butchery. The Palestinian Arabs - not as much. It's a complicated question without a clear-cut answer. What alternative was there to the state of Israel? The fact that even in the enlightened 20th century (and in cultured Germany, no less!) Jews and Roma were rounded up and butchered wholesale just goes to how that dispossessed nations are never safe. As such, they are not only justified, but are actually obligated (for their descendants' sake) to try and reclaim a homeland. But then you have new dispossessed people.

What's the answer? I don't know. I'm not sure there is one. This, along with the question of "just war", is one of those problems which highlight the yawning gap between what we wish the world was and what it actually is.
It;s not a complicated question. It' Simple.

Forcing foreign colonial rule on any population *IS* wrong.

That others have wronged you doe4s not give you the RIGHT to wrong a third party.