Bertrand Russell on the Middle East, pt. 3 of 3

Printed posthumously on February 23, Bertrand_Russell_Final_ME_Reflection1970 in the New York Times, these final reflections by Bertrand Russell–presented to the delegates at the International Conference of Parliamentarians on the Middle East Crisis, in Cairo on February 2, 1970, the day before he passed away–stand out as though they were righten now. See previouss posts for parts one and two.

“We are frequently told that we must sympathize with Israel because of the suffering of the Jews in Europe at the hands of the Nazis. I see in this suggestion no reason to perpetuate any suffering. What Israel is doing today can not be condoned; and to invoke the horrors of the past to justify those of the present is gross hypocrisy. Not only does Israel condemn a vast number of refugees to misery; not only are many Arabs under occupation condemned to military rule; but also Israel condemns the Arab nations, only recently emerging from colonial status, to continuing impoverishment as military demands take precedence over national development.

“All who want to see an end to bloodshed in the Middle East must ensure that any settlement does not contain the seeds of future conflict. Justice requires that the first step towards a settlement must be an Israeli withdrawal from all the territories occupied in June 1967. A new world campaign is needed to help bring justice to the long-suffering people of the Middle East.”

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