This edition of Salaam Shalom features a talk given by Dr. Ilan Pappe, distinguished Israeli historian and one of the experts on the Nakba, which refers to the event that was an ethnic cleansing of over 750,000 Palestinians from their homes and the destruction of over 500 towns and villages in 1948 and 1949. The State of Israel is built on the ruins of Arab Palestine and today over 7 million Palestinians are displaced from their homes. In 2008 Ilan Pappe gave an address on Zionist ideology and the ethnic cleansing of Palestine at the Al Awda Convention, an organization dedicated to the right of return of Palestinian refugees. Ilan Pappe discussed Zionist ideology as the driving force of the war of 1948-1949. He explains why it would have been impossible to create a Jewish State in Palestine without ethnic cleansing, and why it’s important today in the pursuit of peace. This talk was produced by Alternate Focus. But first, Mark Hage, host, opens tonight's edition of Salaam Shalom Report on Palestine / Israel with news and commentary on Benjamin Netanyahu's address to Congress this past May 24. The Israeli Prime Minister received multiple standing ovations from Congress when he announced Israel would not withdraw to the 1967 border, would not dismantle major settlement blocks, would not share Jerusalem with a future Palestinian State, would not honor the Palestinian right of return, but would continue military pressure with it’s occupation of the West Bank. . . . Also in this edition we have two reports on Barack Obama’s speech on May 19 pertaining to the elusive Palestine / Israel peace process. The first, Diana Butto made the observation that Obama said a number of things that are a shift from the original Obama position, including, he did not call for a settlement freeze, even though this was the cornerstone of his presidency. The second Palestinian commentator is Omar Barghouti, one of the founders and leaders of the Boycott, Sanctions, and Divestment movement against the State of Israel. In this segment of the Real News Network with Paul Jay, Omar Barghouti comments on Obama’s recent statements regarding the Hamas / Fatah reconciliation agreement. Omar Rarghouti: “He (Obama) never mentions that while Hamas does not recognize Israel’s right to exist as a Jewish State . . . Israel is wiping out Palestine’s existence in reality, concretely, and on the ground. Forget about verbal recognition. Israel does not just not recognize our (Palestine’s) right to exist, it is actually disappearing us as we speak. As President Obama is speaking, Israel is ethnically cleansing more Palestinians, building more colonies in occupied territories, denying our refugees the right of return. So they are disappearing the Palestinians as President Obama is so concerned about a verbal recognition of Israel’s right to exist.” Salaam Shalom Report on Palestine / Israel is produced in Burlington, Vermont at the studios of Vermont Community Access Media (VCAM) by Vermonters for a Just Peace in Palestine Israel (VTJP.org).

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