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State of "Caged" Palestinians

Palestine think tank

Wednesday 17 جمادى الآخرة 1430, by Lina Suleiman

All the versions of this article:

  • English

American rhetoric is full of devious political Language. The Secretary of State Hillary Clinton in an interview with Al Jazeera in May 19 confirmed that “the US is going to be pushing for a two-state solution which, by its very name, implies borders that have to be agreed to”.

But why the borders should be negotiated and agreed to? Aren’t they fixed by the UN resolutions? Do resolutions drop by the reason of time elapsing? Shouldn’t the US and their western allies push for the implementation of international law as they did in the Iraqi and Lebanese cases? And who is expected to negotiate with whom? Is it the corrupt, self-serving, feckless and illegitimate government of Abbas and Salam Fayyad? The CIA and President Obama could not trust but only the latter to have the lead for the new Palestinian government? By that, we have to thank the current American administration, the unity talks have turned into hostility again. That is so convenient for both Israel and the US to maintain the propagandized claims of “there is no real partner for peace” and “Palestinians cannot rule themselves”. But should it be a surprise at all? Wasn’t it the Bush administration that agitated the bifurcation among Palestinians in line with the widespread conventional political wisdom of “divide and rule”? According to Vanity Fair, a covert initiative to provoke a Palestinian civil war was approved by Bush and implemented by Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice and Deputy National Security Adviser Elliott Abrams. The plan was for forces to be trained by the “moderate” Arab governments to remove the democratically elected Hamas-led government from power. Then why we should believe the mendacious cries by the US and the branded “moderates Arabs” for Palestinians unity afterward?

The Secretary of State Clinton went on in the interview and preached,

“I believe that Hamas has to comply with not only the Quartet principles but the underlying principles of the Arab Peace Initiative.”

The US Foreign Minster picked up from the Initiative what she likes and threw away what she does not like. The Initiative calls for full Israeli withdrawal from all the Arab territories occupied since June 1967, in implementation of Security Council Resolutions 242 and 338. But it seems that these sentiments were conveniently and willfully dropped when she was asked on the borders of the two states solutions.

Secretary of State Clinton continued, “You cannot expect either Fatah or the Israelis or Arabs who wish to see this matter resolved, with a two-state solution, to work with a group that does not believe in the outcome of these efforts.”

The honored lady again turned blind to few facts that she deemed necessary to bring up if her administration is really concerned about the Palestinian children’s future as she expressed later in the interview. First Hamas is not merely a group but Hamas has been the democratic choice of people. Second, it is not true that the Israelis genuinely wish to resolve the issue. Facts and polices of atrocities have proved that without any doubt. Third, Fatah and Arabs don’t represent Palestinians. Clinton has forgotten that 11,000 persons from which a third of them are from the Palestinian parliament are in the Israel’s prisons. If they were free, the Palestinian political terrain would quite likely be different. Fourth, if the Palestinian children are a concern to the American administration, they would not allow Israel to explode their small bodies when they took their schools as shelters, bombarded their homes cruelly by American weapons for 22 days and impose an inhuman siege for more than two years. How can we believe you Mrs. Clinton, when your government has been a political partner and grave backer depriving Palestinians of their basic human right to build their bombarded houses where many families at present live in tents with no appropriate facilities for humans’ living? Based on this stark silence, the Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu had the guts to vow insolently, “We are being asked to ease the living conditions of the population and allow goods and equipment in, but we have other priorities in the Gaza Strip.”

How can you keep silent and rationalize the political act of blockade of 1.5 million people in Gaza?

But let’s be naïve or optimistic, whatever name can be given, and assume that the US foreign policy is in transition of change and decently concerned with a political remedy. Let us imagine that president Obama has good intentions of resolving the conflict, not as a co-option strategy of the insurgences that have surfaced in the region and got popular support and legitimacy. Let us believe that the pretenses are not only to uphold the US power and validation of its moral face that has been at high risk since the Bush administration.

What kind of Palestinian state will Israel allow to come into being?

Ilan Pappé, the distinguished Israeli historian on Anniversary of al Nakba “the catastrophe”, answered this question.
Stemming from the Zionist mindset, the Israeli government represented by the whole range of Israeli political spectrum in June 1967 decided on its strategy towards the occupied Palestinian territories. They were not able to do the mass expulsion of 1.5 million Palestinians and the ethnic cleansing that was committed in 1948. The occupying government decided that the West Bank and Gaza are parts of Israel forever. Annexation of the occupied territories to Israel, however, was impossible for demographic factors. Thus the solution came as Palestinians, at best, can have an open prison, to use Pappe’s words, “open Mega prison or sub-prisons”. The prison can be open where Palestinians can have autonomy to run their lives provided that they accept the principle of prison and of being obedient and non-resistant, “Green (caged) Palestinians” so to speak. Should they resist, the Israeli government would move immediately into high security level with all punitive measures. As bitter and painful this may sound, Palestinians, to this strategy, are expected to live, at best, in accordance to ecological conditions, like those of animals.

Even if this prison is called a state, Israelis have no problem with that as long as Palestinians can accept the total control of their lives through bureaucracy machinery that runs every aspects of their existence and collaborates with bureaucracy apparatus. What matters is the essence not the terminology. Policies of atrocities that create the enduring suffering of Palestinians since then have been deemed imperatives to secure the mental walls of the prison.

The strategic decisions made in June 1967 are still running until today in discursively cruel gestures. The last military onslaught and the long-lasting inhumane siege on Gaza is only one palpable piece of evidence. Media manipulation, language and discourse control, propaganda, lobbying, legalization, securitization, self-victimization and political blackmailing by holocaust and anti-Semitism rhetoric are only a few uncovered means on how to maintain the Israeli storytelling and international support. God knows what other means have been espoused but remain concealed.

No Sovereign Palestinian state in the real meaning of a state will come ever for Palestinians within the existing power structure in the Middle East.

The 1967 designed strategy is manifested in the Likud – Platform that stated, “The Government of Israel flatly rejects the establishment of a Palestinian Arab state west of the Jordan river. The Palestinians can run their lives freely in the framework of self-rule, but not as an independent and sovereign state. Thus, for example, in matters of foreign affairs, security, immigration and ecology, their activity shall be limited in accordance with imperatives of Israel’s existence, security and national needs."

To realize the architected prison, terms are mixed up. Terrorist is used instead of resistant; moderates instead of collaborators and subordinates and economic enticements instead of sovereignty and political aspiration. Collusive projects to maintain the status quo of the political landscape go on. The New-Middle East project that aimed at exterminating the resistance movement is one of them.

The only legitimate Palestinian authority and peace partner, in the eyes of the Israeli governments, is the one who accepts to act as a security contractor or a “watchdog” of their own people to control resistance in all forms under pretexts of fighting violence and terrorism and promoting a culture of “moderation”. The Likud - in their platform, demand blatantly that ‘The Palestinian Authority must wage a systematic war on the terror organizations and their infrastructure. The PA must not only intensify its efforts to prevent attacks, but act with determination to prevent potential terrorist acts by dismantling the terrorist infrastructure that has developed and expanded in PA areas since the Oslo accords’. Between the lines, that denotes the resistance to occupation in all sorts.

What does matter as a political end for Israel, the US and their allies is to realize the security of the Israeli state according to the sick mindset of Zionists that perceives the mere existence of Palestinians as a threat.

We, Palestinians, are sick and tired of the mock pretenses and the never-ending slaps in the face. We count on neither the assertions nor the visits made by the American political elites. President Barak Obama today, in the University of Cairo, started his speech by playing on sensitive strings for both Moslems and Arabs, of prosperous history, civilizations of the regions, and tolerance and forgiveness embedded in Islam and the Quran, that make hearts dance happily. It seems that whoever prepared his speech has studied the psychology and mindset of Arabsvery well. But his speech, indeed, brought nothing but empty rhetoric. American polices can’t rely any more on naïveté of people. As long as this statement is pronounced “Palestinians have to evade violence”, then we know that Americans are still a gracious political partner and champion of Israeli interests. It is an utterly deliberate misreading of reality.

If Obama’s visit was accompanied by an immediate lift of siege on Gaza, we would be persuaded that the American administration of today is embarking on a more just policy. But what sounds dreadfully important for the American president, from his election Campaign and political performance so far, is his aspiration to stay in power and to be elected for a second presidency period. Obama won’t be able to take a stand that will definitely displease the Zionist lobby to which he and his party feel indebted to. But to prove that we are peace-lovers, please, prove us by deeds not by words that we are mistaken.

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