søndag 30. mai 2021

As China’s Communist Party marks its centenary, how will it portray its history?

As the Chinese Communist Party celebrates its centenary, now is a good time to look at the uses and abuses of history. On an immediately topical note, this month 100 years ago saw the first serious outbreak of communal violence between Arabs and Jews in Palestine. Arabs were incensed at Britain being given a League of Nations mandate to rule this former piece of the Ottoman Empire and at Britain’s promise in 1917 to make Palestine a “national home” for the Jewish people.

Then, only about 10 per cent of the population was Jewish. One hundred years of conflict now sees Israel, home to about 7.5 million Jews, controlling with a mix of laws, barricades and bombs about six million Arabs in Israel itself, the West Bank and Gaza. The prospect of a two-state solution is almost dead, the prospects for peace and equality worse than ever. Israel’s strength is obvious but unconditional support from the United States is likely to wither as American priorities shift.