Palestine Update 428
Karma and the peace deals
The peace deals between Israel and Arab States never had a warranty attached. Stitched together by unqualified, manipulative, and inexperienced mediators, the first signs of the deals coming apart at the seams are already showing up with The Sudan displaying the first signs.of deviations. The US State Department is into treachery and deceit and reneging on the finer details of the Sudan deal.
All three deals so far, including what Saudi Arabia is doing under the table, is promoting what may be termed ‘Arabic Zionism’ or, at worst, a product of Christian Zionism. Israel is watching as its ‘khadim’ (servant) carries out Israel’s bidding on its behalf. It reminds me of what happened post the Kuwait war. Indian journalists interviewed Kuwaitis and asked what they would do to defend themselves in the event of another Iraqi attack. They evenly said “We have money. With money we can buy slaves. There are Americans we will buy.” The Americans may have military power but hopelessly lack political morals and principles and hence function by imposing fear but not respect.
Israel is now bossing the situation. But both Israel and the US are advancing their self-interests. They do not calculate that far poorer countries have a worth that money cannot buy. That is dignity. Until the US understands that, Israel will not understand that it must undo its barbarity and indulge in justice. Palestine may seem as the infinitely frailer and politically fragile side. But they hold the invaluable moral card. Recall Gandhi’s words: “First they ignore you, then they laugh at you, then they fight you, then you win.
Israel and the powerful West know that their current superior status was never squarely acquired fair and square. They built their house on quick sand and that liquefies very quickly, and the higher the stress the more fluid it becomes. When you play the cards of oppression, you are in a state of self-siege. That explains the reliance on lethal weapons. The boomerang will come back to hit the very archer who sent the weapons. ‘Karma’ may normally sound like some abstract and archaic idea. Evil always catches up with its perpetrator. The immoral deals will come back to haunt its signatories. No question.
Meanwhile, Israel continues its human rights violations with impunity and the world turns a blind eye. Worse, the West silently connives.
Officials Say Peace Accord between Sudan and Israel is already at risk of unraveling
“A landmark agreement between Sudan and Israel to begin normalizing relations is at risk of unraveling just over a month after it was announced by President Trump, revealing a crack in Middle East peace accords that he and Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu of Israel have sought to cement as foreign policy legacies…Sudan reluctantly agreed to open relations with Israel — but only as part of a deal to be taken off a State Department list of state sponsors of terrorism — and wants Congress to approve legislation by year’s end that would protect it from terror-related lawsuits.”
UAE-Israel cooperation in oil market: More political than economic
The effect of the Israel-UAE agreement on the use of storage capacities and pipeline infrastructure will be more political than economic. Israel hopes it will convince other Arab states of the ‘benefits’ of normalizing relations with it. The agreement will benefit Israel and the USA more than the UAE.
The Israeli-Emirati Memorandum of understanding and cooperation on the use of storage capacities and pipeline infrastructure of the Israeli Europe-Asia Pipeline Company (EAPC – previously the Eilat Ashkelon Pipeline Co Ltd) will undoubtedly benefit both Abu Dhabi and Tel Aviv. However, the agreement is unlikely to have the strong impact on the oil market that is currently claimed by the signatories. The agreement on normalisation of relations between the UAE and Israel, signed in September, is becoming the cornerstone of the legal and contractual basis for the development of future Israeli-Emirati relations. During the bilateral business summit held in Abu Dhabi in late October 2020, the two countries signed a number of important documents, including a memorandum on the use and development of the EPAC oil and oil products infrastructure. According to the Israeli and Emirati media, this step should open up access for the UAE to the European oil market. However, such statements are somewhat inconsistent with reality.
Can It Fly?
At first glance, the Eilat-Ashkelon pipeline provides the UAE with a number of important advantages. Traditionally, when exporting oil to Europe and North America, geography was the curse of the Gulf oil producers: the Suez Canal has a limited capacity in terms of the number and tonnage of tankers able to pass through it, and the current political situation in Egypt is characterised by a degree of instability. The alternative route circumnavigates the African continent, increasing the delivery time and transport costs, although allowing the use of tankers of larger tonnage. Under these circumstances, the Israeli pipeline infrastructure provides an alternative to both the route around Africa and the Suez Canal, thus saving time, cutting freight costs, and reducing the political risks associated with Egypt’s domestic situation.
Calling on International Civil Society to join them: Palestinians, Israelis call for a single democratic state
Over the past three years, the ODSC, founded in Haifa but with working relations throughout the worldwide Palestinian community, has formulated a 10-point political program setting out the vision and framework of a shared democracy in which all the inhabitants of historic Palestine would enjoy common citizenship and equality under the law in a new and pluralistic political community. After decades in which the justice of the Palestinian struggle against Zionist colonization has been recognized by the international community, after decades of chasing after the chimera of a “two-state solution,” and after decades of asserting Palestinian rights with no viable political expression, the time for an effect
ive campaign of decolonization and liberation is now, and it is urgent. Every day the Israeli government, aided by the international community, imposes draconian and irreversible “facts on the ground,” locking the country’s majority population, the Palestinians, into tiny, impoverished enclaves, perpetuating as well the exile of half the Palestinian population. A democratic state in historic Palestine is no utopia if we organize around a just political program, organize, strategize and effectively mobilize our forces, the global grassroots, the international civil society.
Why Australia Supports Israel’s oppression of the Palestinians
Australia has a record of loyal support for Israeli state racism and human rights abuses that puts even the US to shame. In order to change that record, we need to challenge the political forces that have made Australia Israel’s most faithful ally. It’s painful to witness Australia’s visceral hatred of Palestinian human rights, as someone who was born here, but the evidence is overwhelming. Most Australians are unaware of how diplomatically isolated their country has become. Australia is almost unique globally in its consistent support for Israel in diplomatic forums like the United Nations.
Consider Israel’s announcement that it would annex the West Bank earlier this year. Although Benjamin Netanyahu has postponed this decision for the time being, his government is still annexing land unofficially across the occupied territories. In spite of this, Australia opposed a UN resolution in June — with only the Marshall Islands, a US client state, joining it — condemning annexation, and voted against resolutions recognizing Palestinian self-determination and opposing Israel’s illegal settlement enterprise.
Read full text
Israel’s detention of Palestinian children amounts to torture, says new report
Israeli authorities routinely detain Palestinian children in isolation solely for interrogation purposes, a practice that amounts to torture or cruel, inhuman, or degrading treatment or punishment, said Defense for Children International – Palestine (DCIP) in its newly released report. The 73-page report by the rights group, “Isolated and Alone: Palestinian children held in solitary confinement by Israeli authorities for interrogation,” evaluates and details patterns of arrest, detention conditions and interrogation practiced by Israeli authorities. It concludes that the physical and social isolation of Palestinian children for interrogation purposes by Israeli authorities is a practice that constitutes solitary confinement, amounting to torture or cruel, inhuman, or degrading treatment under international law norms.
DCIP documented 108 cases over a four year period ending in December 2019, where Palestinian children were being detained by the Israeli military and were held in isolation for two or more days during the interrogation period. Evidence and documentation collected by DCIP overwhelmingly indicate that the isolation of Palestinian children within the Israeli military detention system is practiced solely to obtain a confession for a specific offense or to gather intelligence under interrogation. The practice is a clear violation of international law, says the rights group.
Israeli court rules that Nation State law calls for discrimination against Palestinian citizens
Two years ago Israel passed a law defining the country as the “Nation State of the Jewish People,” and now the rubber is meeting the road. Yaniv Luzon, a registrar of the magistrate’s court outside Haifa, dismissed a discrimination suit by the uncle of two Palestinian children living in the town of Karmiel, and cited the Nation Basic Law as permitting discrimination. The uncle sued the town on behalf of the children, saying that it does not have a school for Arabic-speaking children, and therefore it should reimburse the children for the expenses of sending them to Arabic-speaking schools in neighboring towns. The suit assessed the reimbursement at 25,000 NIS (some $7,200) over several years.
In his decision to dismiss the suit, Luzon wrote that “Karmiel, a Jewish town, was founded in order to support the Jewish settlement of the Galilee […] The building of an Arabic-speaking school, as well as funding transportation for Arab students, to anyone and for anywhere, may change the demographic balance and harm the town’s demeanor (at this time, 6% of the town’s population is Arab).” So because it’s a Jewish town, the state has no obligations to meet the needs of its Palestinian minority. Luzon then grounded his decision in the Nation State Law:
“Article 7 of the Basic Law: Israel as the Nation-State of the Jewish People says: ‘The State sees Jewish settlement as a national value, and will act so as to encourage such settlement and promote its founding and establishment.’ As the development of Jewish settlement and its support is a national value enshrined in a Basic Law, it should be considered a valid and dominant consideration in the town’s system of considerations, including the building of a school and setting policy regarding the funding of busing students out of town.”
Israel has no constitution. It has several Basic Laws instead. Basic Laws suffer from a major weakness: They can be enacted with any majority of the parliament (technically, a majority of 2:1 will suffice). As Netanyahu has grown in power, he changed Basic Laws time and time again, using his makeshift coalitions.