Right of return: An interview with Lev Grinberg

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Lev Grinberg, political sociologist at Ben Gurion University, and public intellectual of Israel discusses the issue of Palestinian refugees and their ‘right of return’ in an interview with Aditi Bhaduri. You are both a Zionist and a supporter of the Palestinians, who has branded Israel's military action in the occupied territories as ‘state terrorism’. How do you explain this dichotomy? There is no contradiction in being a Zionist and recognizing the national rights of the Palestinians. In common perception, Zionism is synonymous with Palestinian dispossession and colonization. For me, Zionism is completely different – meaning living in a Jewish community, speaking in Hebrew, celebrating Jewish culture and holidays without fear that I shall be persecuted for my Jewishness. But it also does not mean the repression of the Palestinian people. On the contrary, since my arrival in Israel I started to struggle against discrimination of the Palestinians Arabs in Israel and against the occupation of the West Bank and Gaza strip – the Palestinian territories. Two years after my arrival in Israel I founded a students' movement called ‘Campus’, which had both Jewish and Arab students. Some of the Arabs of that movement are today members of Knesset and gained their political experience in that movement. As a Zionist, for me it was clear that if I was against the discrimination of Jews in the Diaspora I must be against the discrimination of the Arabs.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationThe Fleeing People of South Asia
Subtitle of host publicationSelections from Refugee Watch
PublisherAnthem Press
Number of pages5
ISBN (Electronic)9781843317784
ISBN (Print)9788190583572
StatePublished - 1 Jan 2009

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Sciences (all)


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