Why do Zionists oppose the "legitimate right" of return of the Palestinian Refugees?
Questions and answers about Zionism, Israel, the Israeli-Palestinian (Palestine-Israel, Middle East) Conflict
†In French: Sionisme et l'Israel : Questions et rťponses (FAQ)††
If Zionists are not racists, why do they oppose the "legitimate right" of return of the Palestinian Refugees?
Palestinian advocates claim that the refugees of 1948 have a right guaranteed in international law to return to Israel. In fact, there is no such law. The Fourth Geneva Convention, often cited in this context, does not stipulate a right of return for refugees. UN Resolution 194, also cited as the basis for this "right" is a resolution of the UN General Assembly. Such resolutions are not binding in international law. No nation has the obligation to admit enemy belligerents. Moreover, Resolution 194 does not insist on a Right of Return. It says that "refugees wishing to return to their homes and live at peace with their neighbours should be permitted to do so."†
The refugees were not Israeli citizens. They did not want Israeli citizenship. They were not willing to "live at peace with their neighbors." The Badil organization, which claims to represent the refugees, says there can be no compromise with the "Zionist Enemy."
Admission of several million refugees would soon create an Arab majority in Israel. This would violate the right of self-determination of the Jewish people, who would no longer have a national home. The right of self-determination, guaranteed in the UN Charter, is recognized universally, by Palestinians as well, as a jus cogens - compelling law, that takes precedence over other considerations. The right of self-determination was the basis of creation of the Jewish state of Israel, and was cited in the debates leading to the UN partition decision.
The people who advocate "Right of Return" also favor abolishing the Israeli Law of Return that permits Jews to immigrate to Israel freely. Israel would cease to be the national home of the Jews, and the Jewish people would lose the right to self-determination. Clearly "Right of Return" cannot be implemented if it contradicts a different fundamental right that is anchored in international law.
Israel Advocacy Handbook - Making the Case for Israel - The Case for Israel, Introduction , Concepts & Definitions, Basics, Audience, Forming Opinions, Narratives and Issues, Language, Applying the Basics, Techniques & Tactics, Grass Roots Activism, Cooperation, Using the Web, Proactive Advocacy, Anti-Israel Narrative, Zionist Narrative, Web Use Guide, Grass Roots Guide