Palestine Updates 23/2017
Of peacemakers, prisoners, racism, land grab, and solidarity!
The Question of Palestine has two three features to it. One is the dreadful occupation replete with chronicles of unheard crimes against humanity. Secondly, there is the resistance of Palestinians who have adopted the right to say NO to illegalities and, who have, rejected the demand to be subordinate to Israel’s absurd conditions. Their resistance disregards the fact that Israel is a mighty military power. It defies Israel knowing that it is a pauperized moral force that is holding together an occupation that is not sustainable. Thirdly, there is a defiant core of people, churches, civil society, academics, trade unions and others who have formed a chain of global solidarity. That solidarity sternly warns Israel that it risks being pushed to ‘recluse’ status in the international community in due time if it will not accede to the demand to abide by international law in quick time. Patience with Israel is wearing thin and more and more countries and groups are speaking out as never before against Israel.
Palestinian options for peaceful resistance have lasted over two decades now since it signed off on the armed struggle. With Oslo, Palestinians and Israelis were meant to talk through a peace process and settlement. Palestinians are known to have crossed the religious divide in the search for peace. Sadly, their peaceful ways have brought them more by way of punitive reprisals. With an estimated 7,000 Palestinian prisoners in Israeli jails, there is hardly a family which has not seen one of its members in prison. Since 1967, around 750,000 Palestinians have been in custody. Global campaigns have done little to shame Israel and alter behaviour. Jail conditions are atrocious as films, documentaries, and books reveal. Israeli army machinery destroy water pipes thus depriving ordinary people of safe drinking water – and, in some cases, go without water for days. It’s not different when it comes to roads for settlers. Each settlement means that new roads are built and, always, on Palestinians land and after destroying agricultural fields. The litany of atrocities is endless.
Meanwhile attempts to forge a just peace are stalled by Israel because it implies adopting UN resolutions and obeying international law. Political thinkers and analysts, diplomats, and government leaders know that the Palestine-Israel conflict does not need rocket science to be learned before a solution is found. It simply requires conscience and an aspiration for peace. It requires rejecting the enforcement of Israel’s extra-judicial practices, and making of laws which have no rationale or precedence in law-making anywhere else in the world barring Israel. When well-meaning mediators offered Israel painless, yet beneficial solutions Israel spurned them and walked away.
And the international community seems, as if, under political or, even, schizophrenia. Aid, for example, has been used as a weapon to stifle Palestinians – given with generosity on one occasion, and withdrawn at the next most convenient pretext.
A handful of countries – mostly in what is referred to the Global South – have remained loyal to the claim for justice for the Palestinians and steadfastly opposed to Israel’s religious and political claims to the land. At the time we write this editorial, 700 representatives and parliamentary delegations from over 50 of these countries are meeting together in Teheran to consider what may be their solidarity to a Third Intifada.
It has been repetitively argued that governments are not the instruments that will create the conditions for peace. Too often, they are tempted by deals that offer them crumbs from under the table of the rich and powerful countries. This explains why an issue that has some straightforward solutions is dragged out and made more complicated with each passing day. It will be people- such as those now in Teheran, who will be the difference. The people will speak loud enough and end the violence.
Palestinian Bishop receives peace prize
Bishop Dr Munib Younan of Palestine, who is part of the Evangelical Lutheran Church, will receive the award from the Niwano Peace Foundation at a ceremony in Tokyo in July. At the ceremony Bishop Younan will receive a medal and an undisclosed amount of prize money.
Read more on Premier Christian Radio
Film on Israeli imprisonment of Palestinians wins top award in Berlin
Lost Time: Palestinian prisoners in Israel
The poignant stories of Palestinian prisoners in Israel and the effects of imprisonment on them and their families
Israeli soldiers destroy internationally-funded drinking water pipeline
Israeli military bulldozers destroyed a drinking water pipeline that was funded by The United Nations International Children’s Fund (UNICEF) in the Central Plains of the occupied West Bank. This destruction is the second of its kind in one month.
Read more on the International Middle East Monitor
Israel settlements road to cut through East Jerusalem
Read more on Al jazeera
US offered Israel secret peace deal in 2016, ‘Netanyahu walked away’
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu turned down a regional peace initiative last year that was brokered by then-American Secretary of State John Kerry, in apparent contradiction to his stated goal of involving regional powers in resolving Israel’s conflict with the Palestinians. Netanyahu took part in a secret summit that Kerry organized and included Jordan’s King Abdullah II and Egyptian President Abdel Fattah el-Sissi.According to the report, which cited anonymous Obama administration officials, Kerry proposed regional recognition of Israel as a Jewish state — a key Netanyahu demand — alongside a renewal of peace talks with the Palestinians with the support of the Arab countries. Netanyahu reportedly rejected the offer, saying he would not be able to garner enough support for it in his hard-line coalition government.
Read more on the Independent
New York Times openly promotes formal apartheid regime by Israel
Read more on Counter punch
US made serious mistake in blocking Palestinian pick for Libya: UN
UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres says Washington made a “serious mistake” by blocking a former Palestinian Prime Minister from heading the global body’s political mission in Libya. “I believe that it’s essential for everybody to understand that people serving the UN are serving in their personal capacities. They don’t represent a country or a government.” Last week, the United States blocked the appointment of former Palestinian Prime Minister Salam Fayyad to lead the UN mission in Libya in a move intended to reassure the Tel Aviv regime of the new US administration’s support for Israel.
Read more on Press tv
Gaza mother holds baby in Jerusalem after six-month wait
A Palestinian baby was reunited with her mother after more than six months on Monday, after Israel granted Jumana Daoud a permit to travel from Gaza to Jerusalem to fetch her. The baby smiled as she was picked up by her mother for the first time since her premature birth on August 1. “It’s a very beautiful feeling. Finally I can take her in my arms. Now I just hope that she’ll be happy forever,” her grinning mother said. Daoud and rights groups said she had submitted an application several months ago to re-enter Jerusalem to retrieve baby Maryam from a hospital in Israeli-annexed east Jerusalem, but received no reply.
Read what Alaraby says
What EU shift in financial support policy means for Gaza
Explainer: Israel-Palestine Conflict, the Two-state Solution (VIDEO)
Israeli occupation soldiers manning a military
checkpoint in the West Bank. (Photo: Tamar Fleishman,)
What is a two-state solution; what is a one-state solution; and why are they now at the heart of the Palestine-Israeli discussion?
Watch on Palestine chronicle
Read more on the Mehr news agency