Video: 'A repeat of 1948': Why Palestinians fear never being able to return home The Israeli-Palestinian conflict has been ongoing for decades, with no clear resolution in sight. One of the key issues at the heart of the conflict is the displacement of Palestinians from their homes and the fear of never being able to return. This video explores the deep-rooted fear and trauma experienced by Palestinians as they recount their stories of loss and longing. The Nakba, meaning "catastrophe" in Arabic, refers to the mass displacement of Palestinians that occurred during the 1948 Arab-Israeli war. It was a pivotal moment in history that led to the establishment of the State of Israel and the displacement of hundreds of thousands of Palestinians from their homes. Many Palestinians still carry the pain of the Nakba, passed down through generations, as they grapple with the loss of their ancestral lands and the impossibility of returning. One such individual is Sawsan Youssef, a Palestinian woman who was forced to flee her home in Jaffa during the Nakba. In the video, she recounts her memories of growing up in Jaffa, a vibrant city with a diverse population. She describes the moment when her family had to leave their house, taking only a few belongings with them. Youssef's story is a testament to the deep emotional attachment Palestinians have to the land they were forced to leave behind. Another interviewee in the video is Bashar Al-Husseini, a Palestinian activist whose family was expelled from Jerusalem during the Nakba. He discusses the ongoing struggle for Palestinian rights and the fear of never being able to return home. Al-Husseini explains that the right of return is not just a legal and political issue, but also a deeply personal one for Palestinians. It is about reclaiming their history, identity, and connection to the land. The video also includes interviews with younger Palestinians who were born and raised in refugee camps. They speak of the longing to visit their ancestral villages and the feeling of being disconnected from their roots. One interviewee, a young girl named Nisreen, dreams of one day seeing her family's village and meeting her extended family. These stories highlight the intergenerational trauma experienced by Palestinians, as the pain and longing for their homeland is passed down from one generation to the next. The right of return is a key demand for Palestinians in any peace negotiations. It is enshrined in international law and supported by numerous United Nations resolutions. However, Israel has consistently rejected the right of return, arguing that it would undermine the Jewish majority in the country. This has created a deep sense of frustration and despair among Palestinians who fear that their dream of returning home may never be realized. The video also explores the impact of the ongoing Israeli occupation on Palestinian lives. The construction of Israeli settlements in the West Bank and East Jerusalem has further solidified the Israeli control over Palestinian land and made the prospect of a viable Palestinian state increasingly difficult. Palestinians living in these areas face numerous restrictions on their movement, limited access to basic services, and the constant threat of eviction. The Israeli policy of demolishing Palestinian homes is another source of fear and anxiety for Palestinians. Thousands of homes have been demolished under the pretext of lacking proper permits, leaving families homeless and traumatized. This policy disproportionately affects Palestinians, further marginalizing and displacing them from their land. The video serves as a reminder that the Israeli-Palestinian conflict is not just a political dispute; it is a deeply personal and emotional struggle for Palestinians. It is about the right to live in dignity, to return to their ancestral homes, and to have their voices heard. Until a just and lasting solution is found, the fear of never being able to return home will continue to haunt Palestinians, perpetuating the cycle of pain and suffering.
top of page
bottom of page