by Itamar Marcus and Nan Jacques Zilberdik
Colorful paintings of maps that erase Israel and label it "Palestine" were recently displayed at an exhibition funded by Norwegian People's Aid, a Norwegian NGO, whose funders include the Norwegian government and other international donors.
The above map is entitled, "This is the area of Palestine," and text on the map says the area of "Palestine" is "27,009 square kilometers," a figure that includes all of Israel. Another map shows "The borders of Palestine," listing the Mediterranean Sea, Lebanon, Syria, Jordan and Egypt. In this map, Israel is also turned into "Palestine." A third map displays "the cities of Palestine," and includes the Israeli cities and towns Beer Sheva, Jaffa, Acre, Haifa and Safed.
[http://borjcamp.com/?p=46522 accessed Jan. 4, 2015]
Norwegian People's Aid lists the Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA) as donors for its "development cooperation in Lebanon." [http://www.npaid.org/Our-work/Countries/Middle-East/Lebanon/Development-cooperation-in-Lebanon accessed Jan. 4, 2015]
But the funding of the exhibition of Palestinian maps that erase the existence of Israel may involve even more international donors. Norwegian People's Aid stated in its annual account from 2012 that it was also supported by the US State Department, USAID - US Agency for International Development, the EU and UN, the Dutch and Swedish ministries of foreign affairs, Germany and other governments, in addition to the Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs and NORAD - the Norwegian Agency for Development Cooperation.
Norway, Canada, the US, and all those mentioned as funders are active partners in the peace process between Israel and the Palestinians. However, the maps of "Palestine" they helped fund, which present a world without Israel, are significant impediments to reaching a permanent agreement and lasting peace.
Last year, Palestinian Media Watch reported that a UN official in Lebanon posed with a "map of Palestine" that erased Israel. At the time, the UN responded to PMW's report claiming that the map was pre-1948. PMW explained that this was a poor excuse as the map clearly included a large flag of the Palestinian Authority (which was founded in 1994), indicating PA sovereignty over Israel at the present time or in the future.
The current exhibition was named "This is Palestine" and the maps were painted by Palestinian children from Lebanon. The exhibition marked the 50th anniversary of "the outbreak of the 'Palestinian revolution,'" reported the official PA daily, referring to the first terror attack that Fatah, headed by Yasser Arafat, carried out against Israel in 1965 - an attempt to blow up Israel's National Water Carrier.
Norwegian People's Aid describes the goal of its work with Palestinian refugees:
"Important struggles are the struggle to have recognition of the rights of the refugees to eventually return to their homeland after more than 60 years, and while they are staying in Lebanon the struggle for their basic civil rights and rights to basic services, to work and housing."
In 2013, Palestinian Media Watch's reports on the PA practice of rewarding imprisoned terrorists with salaries led to significant Norwegian criticism of the PA, and demands that the PA stop paying salaries to terrorists.
The following is a longer excerpt of the report on the Norway-funded exhibition:
"The 'Steadfast Children' institute held a paintings exhibition titled 'This is Palestine' at the Al-Burj Al-Shamali refugee camp next to the Lebanese city of Tyre, on the occasion of the 50th anniversary of the outbreak of the 'Palestinian revolution' (i.e. "the Palestinian Revolution in 1965 when Fatah, headed by Yasser Arafat, carried out its first terror attack against Israel, trying to blow up Israel's National Water Carrier.)
The exhibition, funded by the Norwegian People's Aid organization, featured brush paintings by our nation's children in Lebanon, which were consistent with the [atmosphere of the] event and the tragic situation of our people in the refugee camps in the diaspora. The exhibition also included six additional paintings - 'the rivers of Palestine', 'the mountains of Palestine', 'the plains of Palestine', 'the cities of Palestine', 'the Palestinian national anthem' and 'the borders of Palestine.'"
From WAFA, official PA news agency
[Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, Dec. 24, 2014]