As Israelis prepare to celebrate Independence Day in May, Palestinians commemorate what they call the nakba, or catastrophe, of 1948. Last month a prominent leader of the Palestinian liberation movement reflected on the Palestinians' mass exodus nearly seven decades ago in an exclusive interview with me in Amman. The events of 1948 did not inspire him to join Egypt, Syria and Jordan's war against the newly declared State of Israel. Nor did it force him to flee his home, as it did for hundreds of thousands of non-Jewish citizens of the former British Mandate Palestine. At the time, Nayef Hawatmeh was only 10 years old....
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