For the first time in nearly a decade, Hamas will take full part in “Nakba” events set to take place in Palestinian Authority-controlled areas of Judea and Samaria today. Hamas terrorists will take full part in the Nakba events in major PA cities, and will be allowed to display their flags and rally supporters openly.
The "Nakba", Arabic for "disaster", is commemorated annually on the 15th May in PA-controlled areas and by anti-Zionist groups across the world (including Arab and far-left groups in Israel), the day in 1948 that Israel was declared a state. It commemorates the failure of the combined Arab armies and paramilitary forces to smother the Jewish state at birth, and the founding of the State of Israel.
A major theme of Nakba Day commemorations is the "refugee issue" - remembering the roughly 700,000 Arabs who fled their homes as the result of the fighting.
While anti-Zionist groups say that was a result of an Israeli policy to expel all Arab residents, according to most historians the vast majority of Arabs left their homes and villages either due to the fighting or at the behest of Arab nations, including Egypt, Syria, and Transjordan, who promised that they would quickly return to distribute the booty taken from the Jews, who by that time would have been “thrown into the sea.”
Things didn't quite work out that way, and many of the Arabs who fled ended up in refugee camps in Arab countries, where they were not allowed to become citizens, build permanent homes, or in some cases even work.
Moreover the flow of refugees was far from one-sided. Jewish communities in Judea, Samaria, Gaza and eastern Jerusalem were ethnically-cleansed in their entirety by Arab forces during the War of Independence; in contrast, the Jewish state maintained a sizable Arab minority, which today numbers around 1.5 million.
An additional one million Jews were expelled or forced to flee from surrounding Arab countries due to a systematic campaign of anti-Semitic incitement and persecution.
Since the takeover of Gaza by Hamas in 2007, public displays of Hamas support in PA-controlled areas of Judea and Samaria have been illegal, and PA police have detained Hamas supporters. However, Hamas has once again become legal in these areas, after Fatah and Hamas signed a cooperation agreement last month.
The IDF was on full alert Thursday, in case unrest ensues at the end of the demonstrations taking place in PA cities, IDF officials said.