Opinion | World

Marcus Miller: Indigenous peoples aren't the same as Palestinians

A portion of a separation wall in Bethelem, Israel. Photo: michael_swan

Should indigenous peoples support the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions Movement, which pressures Israel to change its policies toward Palestinians? Marcus Miller joins the debate:
In his letter, An Open Letter to S. James Anaya: Honor the Palestinian Call for Academic Boycott and Human Rights, Mr. Estes perpetuates a revisionist inversion of history by equating Palestinian with Indigenous Peoples and Jews/Israelis with settler/colonialists. There are a myriad of grave implications and political consequences that flow from this premise which actually work to undermine peace between Jewish, Arab and Palestinian neighbors.

The poster for the last Boycott, Divest and Sanction (BDS) rally I saw at the University Saskatchewan included the slogan: “from the river to the sea, Palestine will be free.” Estes sees no connection between BDS and antisemitism but this slogan is a clear call for the elimination of Israel as a Jewish homeland and it ominously recalls the Nazi fantasy of a nation that is “judenfrei.”

In spite of the fact that all Jewish creation stories are rooted in ancient sites strewn throughout Judea, Samaria, Palestine (the Roman name) and Israel; and archaeological evidence clearly shows that Jews were born of and flourished in this land well before Arab people planted their temples and cities directly over Jewish sites (conquerors do that), the Jewish claim to its Aboriginal homeland, and evidence of its ancient presence is pervasively undermined – even by those who themselves are fighting for emancipation from settler-colonialism.

Read More on the Story:
Marcus Miller: Nick Estes ‘Perpetuates a Revisionist Inversion of History’ (Indian Country Media Network 5/7)

Related Stories:
Nick Estes: Indigenous people cannot cross picket line on Palestine (April 7, 2017)