Recognition - But For Whom?

A piece from the website of the 1916 Societies about the Palestinian question.

  • With a motion passed at Leinster House committing the 26-Counties to an ‘official recognition of Palestine on the basis of the 1967 borders’, Sean Bresnahan – Secretary of the Thomas Ashe Society in Omagh and National PRO of the 1916 Societies – identifies the proposed ‘two-state solution’ as a subtle means to accrue legitimacy and a legal standing for the illegal Zionist occupation of Palestine.

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When considering the rush by European governments, many of them key allies of Israel, and other non-governmental actors, both at home and abroad, to ‘recognise Palestine’, we should consider and make clear that they are only recognising 22 percent of Palestine. This process in fact is not about recognising Palestine at all, on the contrary the truth is this is about achieving recognition, by guile and deceit, for the usurping state of ‘Israel’ and legitimising its illegal conquest and occupation of Palestinian land.

If we are sincere in our support for the righteous cause of the Palestinian people then we will hold the line with them and insist on the liberation of all of Palestine, from the river to the sea. Indeed Palestine does not need or require our ‘recognition’ – it already exists. Not only as a physical reality but in the hearts and minds of all who remain committed to the notion of a just world and attach value to the principles of justice and peace. Neither partition or occupation are concepts to be held as consistent with such principles and we in Ireland should understand that better than anyone.
What Palestine really needs at this point is our full and unambiguous support. What we should actually be doing is withdrawing recognition from Israel and stating clearly and without hesitation that its occupation of Palestine and its suppression of the Palestinian national right are a criminal act devoid of all legitimacy which can never be made acceptable or legal under any guise. Palestinian lands have been taken by force and are occupied, are we really prepared to legalise that or are we going to stand on the side of humanity and oppose it for the crime it was and is?

We must stand true and our support for the right of the Palestinian people to full self-determination and sovereignty over their own affairs and territory cannot waver. We must reject at the fundamental level any notion that the state of Israel has any right to occupy Palestinian land, for it does not. Our demands must not be for a mere ‘recognition’ of a Palestinian bantustan on 22 percent of its own territory – while legalising the occupation of the rest – but for the complete disbandment and a dismantling of Zionism’s occupation system, with Palestine and the Palestinians finally set free.

Our call must be for a complete and unconditional end to the Israeli occupation of Palestine and the full retrieval of Palestine’s national rights. Zionist Israel is a violent, criminal entity to be opposed and not pandered to and at this critical time we should remain constant rather than move to appease the aggressor. We as Irish people – ourselves living with the consequences of partition and occupation – must extend our full support to the Palestinian people and continue to work for the day when the Palestinians – and indeed ourselves here in Ireland – achieve the full freedom to which we are entitled under the rights of man.

Ultimately, Ireland and the Irish should not be party to any process that confers legitimacy on the usurping Zionist entity. If we were going to do this then we should have done it right.

Our call must be for a full recognition of ALL Palestine – 100 percent – as a sovereign nation-state under imperialist occupation; from the Jordan River to the Mediterranean Sea – from the Golan Heights to the Gulf of Aqaba. That is the only motion those who endorse the Palestinian national struggle should attempt to commit the Irish people to. Anything less is not only a sop to Zionism but a betrayal of the fundamental principles on which humanity should rest and a dangerous precedent elevating force and the use of force to a position above the concept of international law itself.


  1. Read this piece again and replace the word Palestine with Ireland. Now it all makes sense. Zionism,British imperialism, no difference.

  2. For sure Pat, British imperialism and Zionism are one and the same entity... Let's not forget who created the mess there in the first place