Israel/Palestine: Where “Peace Process” is Sham by Design

“Things are seldom what they seem, Skim milk masquerades as cream”
– Gilbert & Sullivan, HMS Pinafore

[The ongoing repressive Israeli settler-colonial project on the Palestinian people, facing growing exposure and international opposition, has increasingly brought Zionist ideologues (an echo of American "manifest destiny" expansionists) as well as "soft Zionist" real-politicians to resort to ever-more arrogant and hyperbolic deceptions to prevent their imperial allies from thinking they've outlived their usefulness.  At the same time, the collaboration of the corrupt Palestinian "leadership" with the "realities" of imperial power and Israeli settler-colonialism, has spun a very thin theatrical disguise of Palestinian identity and loyalty.  Both the Israeli colonist-settlers and the Palestinian quislings (struggling to extend their credibility in their mutually-symbiotic weakened states) depend upon blasting the mutually-reinforcing lies and deceptions of each other.  The details of this slimy and shadowy faux "opposition" are revealed in this recent article by author Jeff Blankfort.  --  Frontlines ed.]

Palestinian Collaboration Overshadows Latest Talks

“Imagine for a moment, what the reaction would have been in Northern Ireland if the IRA had taken to guarding the streets of Belfast and Derry for Her Majesty’s occupation forces.”

by Jeff Blankfort, Dissident Voice, May 7th, 2014

Shortly after the signing of the Oslo accords between Israel and the PLO in 1993, the Jerusalem Post ran a cartoon that depicted a critical aspect of those accords which has rarely been discussed much less acknowledged. In the cartoon, a smiling Yasser Arafat was sitting upright on a stretcher giving a “V” sign. The stretcher bearers were Israeli Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin and Shimon Peres.

Its message was clear: the Oslo agreement had come to the rescue of the PLO chairman whose reputation among his fellow Palestinians had sunk to the bottom of the barrel. The price they were to pay was dear: the legitimizing of Israel’s presence in 62% of the West Bank, what is commonly known as Area C and which Israel is quite likely to annex. Arafat’s representative at Oslo who negotiated the accords that effectively signed away West Bank land to Israel and ended the first intifada was Mahmoud Abbas.

Netanyahu, Obama, and Abbas  --  Partners in a Theatrical Crime

Netanyahu, Obama, and Abbas — Partners in a Theatrical Crime

Now, let’s jump ahead 21 years to the present where the support of West Bank Palestinians for Abbas, Arafat’s successor, has been even lower than it was for the late PLO chair and with good reason: By any definition one chooses, Abbas is a traitor, a collaborator with the enemy. His Palestinian Authority “Preventive Security” police force closely coordinates its activities with Israel’s security forces with the goal of suppressing resistance to Israel’s ongoing occupation and ethnic cleansing while leaving Palestinians without a semblance of protection against Israeli raids on West Bank towns and refugee camps. For all intents and purposes, that goal has been achieved.

Continue reading

Protests, hunger strikes mark Palestinian Prisoner’s Day

Palestinians gather to commemorate Prisoners' Day in Nablus on April 17, 2013. Palestinians across the territories are attending marches and rallies as a show of solidarity with prisoners from the West Bank, east Jerusalem and Gaza held in Israeli facilities, whose numbers according to Israeli rights group B'Tselem reach 4,713. (Photo: AFP - Jaafar Ashtiyeh)

[Palestinians gather to commemorate Prisoners' Day in Nablus on April 17, 2013. Palestinians across the territories are attending marches and rallies as a show of solidarity with prisoners from the West Bank, east Jerusalem and Gaza held in Israeli facilities, whose numbers according to Israeli rights group B'Tselem reach 4,713. (Photo: AFP - Jaafar Ashtiyeh)]
 Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Palestinians across the territories attended marches and rallies Wednesday as a show of solidarity with prisoners from the West Bank, east Jerusalem and Gaza held in Israeli facilities.

Some 3,000 Palestinians in Israeli jails on Wednesday refused breakfast as part of a one-day hunger strike to mark Prisoners’ Day, an Israeli prison official said.

Israeli rights group B’Tselem estimates some 4,713 Palestinians are currently imprisoned by Israel.
Activists reached the Ofer prison perimeter on Wednesday morning, and tore down 50 meters of the prison fence, mounting a Palestinian flag on prison grounds.

“After around four minutes of being at the fence, Israeli soldiers showed up. They fired tear gas, rubber bullets, and sound bombs at the protesters,” Abdallah Abu Rahmeh, spokesman of the Popular Struggle Coordination Committee, told Al-Akhbar.

“It is necessary to pressure Israel to release the Palestinian prisoners and hunger strikers,” he added. Continue reading

ex-Israeli Ambassador to S. Africa counters ‘democratic Israel’ claim: ‘yes, we are apartheid…’

The Times of Israel

As long as there is no Palestinian state and Israel rules over the West Bank, Israel is a de facto apartheid state, a former top Foreign Ministry official said Wednesday, using a highly contentious term usually employed only by radical anti-Israel activists.

Alon Liel, a former Foreign Ministry director-general and ex-ambassador to South Africa, also called on President Barack Obama to stay home if he didn’t intend to warn Israelis about the dangers of an approaching “apartheid cliff.”

“In the situation that exists today, until a Palestinian state is created, we are actually one state. This joint state — in the hope that the status quo is temporary — is an apartheid state,” Liel said at a Jerusalem conference about whether Israel is or could become an apartheid state. Continue reading

For Palestinian filmmaker on his way to the Oscars, US airport detention a repeat of Israeli checkpoints

Oscars-bound Palestinian film-maker describes ‘unpleasant’ LAX detention

Emad Burnat, who made 5 Broken Cameras, said US officials doubted his credentials and threatened to send him home

, guardian.co.uk, Wednesday 20 February 2013
Guy Davidi , Emad Burnat,

[Emad Burnat, right, with his Israeli co-director Guy Davidi. Five Broken Cameras is nominated in the documentary category. Photograph: Damian Dovarganes/AP]

An Academy-nominated Palestinian film-maker has spoken of the “unpleasant experience” of being detained by US immigration officials when he arrived for this weekend’s Oscars ceremony.

Emad Burnat said that he was held for about an hour at Los Angeles airport on Tuesday, along with his wife and youngest son Gibreel, who plays a central role in Oscar-nominated documentary 5 Broken Cameras.

Burnat said that he thought that US immigration officials – who apparently doubted his credentials – would send him back to Palestine. He compared the incident to daily life for Palestinians under the Israeli occupation. Continue reading

Abbas, Zionist’s comprador Palestinian, renounces refugees’ right to return to historic lands

Palestinians march during a protest against president Mahmoud Abbas in the Jabaliya Refugee Camp, northern Gaza Strip Saturday, Nov. 3, 2012. Gazans protested against Abbas’ remarks at an Israeli television that suggested millions of Palestinian refugees and their descendants would not be able to return to the places they fled, or were forced to flee, during the fighting surrounding Israel’s creation in 1948. The posters read: “traitor – you represent nobody but yourself.”(AP Photo/Hatem Moussa)

Israel President Welcomes Abbas’ Refugee Remarks

JERUSALEM November 3, 2012
By IAN DEITCH, Associated Press

Israel’s president on Saturday welcomed as “courageous” a strong public show of willingness by Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas to make concessions on a core issue in peace talks — that of Palestinian refugees.

Abbas told Israeli channel 2 TV on Friday that he does not want to live in his birthplace Safed, a city in northern Israel.

His words drew anger from some Palestinians because they were viewed as relinquishing a long held Palestinian aspiration for the return of those who fled their homes during the fighting between Arab countries and Israel in the wake of the Jewish state’s 1948 independence.

Abbas’ remarks reflect a decades-old understanding among Palestinian officials that only a limited number of the refugees would ever be able to return to their original homes in Israel as part of a peace agreement. It was however the first time he has said so in public to an Israeli audience. Continue reading

Author of The Color Purple condemns Israeli Apartheid, joins cultural boycott

http://www.haaretz.com/jewish-world/jewish-world-news/author-of-the-color-purple-refuses-to-authorize-hebrew-version-because-israel-is-guilty-of-apartheid-1.437220

Author of The Color Purple refuses to authorize

Hebrew version because ‘Israel is guilty of apartheid’

Alice Walker says Israeli policies were ‘worse’ than the segregation she suffered as an American youth and said South Africans had told her it was worse than Apartheid.

U.S. human rights activist and author Alice Walker.

U.S. human rights activist and author Alice Walker speaks during a news conference about an international flotilla to blockaded Gaza, in Athens, on Monday, June 27, 2011. Photo by AP

June 18, 2012

(JTA) — Alice Walker, author of “The Color Purple,” refused to authorize a Hebrew translation of her prize-winning work, citing what she called Israel’s “apartheid state.”

In a June 9 letter to Yediot Books, Walker said she would not allow an Israeli house to publish the book because “Israel is guilty of apartheid and persecution of the Palestinian people, both inside Israel and also in the Occupied Territories.”

In her letter, posted Sunday by the Palestinian Campaign for the Academic and Cultural Boycott of Israel on its website, Walker supported the boycott, divestment and sanctions movement and offered her hope that the BDS movement “will have enough of an impact on Israeli civilian society to change the situation.”

It was not clear when Yediot Books, an imprint of the daily Yediot Achronot newspaper, made the request, or whether Walker could in fact stop translation of the book. At least one version of the book has already appeared in Hebrew translation, in the 1980s.

Walker said Israelis policies were “worse” than the segregation she suffered as an American youth and said South Africans had told her it was worse than Apartheid.

“The Color Purple,” which won the 1983 Pulitzer Prize for Fiction, was adapted into a movie in 1985 directed by Jewish filmmaker Steven Spielberg.

The novel and the film, which was nominated for 11 Oscars, treat racism in the American South in the first part of the 20th century and sexism among blacks.

Walker has intensified her anti-Israel activism in recent years, traveling to the Gaza Strip to advocate on behalf of the Palestinians.

 

Palestinian officials want UN help for ‘hostages’

Tuesday 03 April 2012
by Tom Mellen

Palestinian officials appealed to the international community on Tuesday to press the Israeli government to end its draconian administrative detention policy.

Addressing the first day of a two-day UN meeting in Geneva on “The question of Palestinian political prisoners in Israeli prisons and detention facilities,” Palestinian Legislative Council representative Ahmed Shreem and director general of prisoners’ rehabilitation minister Mohammad Albatta called on UN member states to bring concerted legal and diplomatic pressure to bear on Israeli authorities.

They said that this was the only way to force them to stop locking Palestinian people up in Israel for renewable terms of six months without charge.

Earlier this week PA Minister of Prisoners’ Affairs Issa Qaraqe branded administrative detention a “dangerous policy” which “turns Palestinian prisoners into hostages of the Israeli security services in breach of international human rights law.”

More than 300 Palestinians are currently held in administrative detention in Israeli prisons. Continue reading

In Tel Aviv, An Arab Spring That Ignores The Arabs

Demonstrators In Tel Aviv take part in a protest against the high cost of living and for social justice for Israelis (but not for Palestinians), August 27, 2011

[The Israeli protests in recent weeks has taken many by surprise, and some have gleaned a hopeful nascent class struggle from the events.  But the protests have barred any involvement by those who challenge the Zionist ethnic cleansing of Palestinians, the settlement/displacement programs, the Israeli apartheid wall/checkpoints/laws and restrictions, and the long-murderous  attacks on Gaza, as well as the absurd notion of a "Jewish state" making pretenses of an "inclusive democracy."  Indeed, growing numbers are recognizing that the protests are really over a better division of the spoils of war and occupation--and of the largesse of the US, which pays for much of the unending assault on Palestine. -- Frontlines ed.]

  By Greg Burris

17 September 2011
The Electronic Intifada

No one could have ever predicted that a single act of protest — the self-immolation of a desperate Tunisian street vendor — would unleash a tidal wave of collective resistance and rebellion throughout North Africa and the Middle East, threatening to topple regimes that had long been considered permanent political players.

But perhaps the most surprising outcome of this regional groundswell of protest was to be seen in Israel where Jewish protesters held up placards and shouted slogans declaring that the revolutionary spirit of Cairo’s Tahrir Square had come to the streets of Tel Aviv. The Arab Spring, it seems, has turned into the Israeli Summer. Continue reading

Palestinian Youth Movement: ‘oppose the attempt to impose a false peace in false borders’

Statement on the September 2011
Declaration of Statehood

We, in the Palestinian Youth Movement (PYM), stand steadfastly against the proposal for Palestinian statehood recognition based on 1967 borders that is to be presented to the United Nations this September by the Palestinian official leadership. We believe and affirm that the statehood declaration only seeks the completion of the normalization process, which began with faulty peace agreements. The initiative does not recognize nor address that our people continue to live within a settler colonial regime premised on the ethnic cleansing of our land and subordination and exploitation of our people.

This declaration serves as a mechanism for rescuing the faulty peace framework and depoliticizing the struggle for Palestine by removing the struggle from its historical colonial context. The attempts to impose a false peace with the normalizing of the colonial regime has only led us to surrender increasing amounts of our land, the rights of our people, and our aspirations by delegitimizing and marginalizing our people’s struggle and deepening the fragmentation and division of our people. This declaration jeopardizes the rights and aspirations of over two-thirds of the Palestinian people who live as refugees in countries of refuge and in exile, to return to their original homes from which they were displaced in the 1948 Nakba (Catastrophe) and subsequently since then. It also jeopardizes the position of the Palestinians residing in the 1948 occupied territories who continue to resist daily against the ethnic cleansing and racial practices from inside the colonial regime. Furthermore, it corroborates and empowers its Palestinian and Arab partners to act as the gatekeepers to the occupation and the colonization of the region within a neo-colonial framework.

The foundation of this process serves as nothing more than to ensure the continuity of negotiations, economic and social normalization, and security cooperation. The state declaration will solidify falsified borders on only a sliver of historic Palestine and still does not address the most fundamental issues: Jerusalem, settlements, refugees, political prisoners, occupation, borders and resource control. We believe such a state declaration will not ensure nor promote justice and freedom for Palestinians, which inherently means there will be no sustainable peace in the region. Continue reading

Palestinians Struggle to Decolonize Education, Won’t Learn Israeli Lessons

by Jillian Kestler-D’Amours | Antiwar.com | July 14, 2011

EAST JERUSALEM — Widespread strikes across Palestinian civil society could be in store for East Jerusalem at the start of the next school year, as the municipality moves ahead with its current plan to implement an Israeli curriculum in Palestinian schools.

“I expect that the beginning of the new school year will not be a normal one. There will be lots of problems. There will be lots of demands, strikes,” Samir Jibril, director of the East Jerusalem Education Bureau told IPS. “All [the Palestinian] institutions are going to stand hand-in-hand against this implementation. Even civil society is demanding to stop this plan by the Israelis.”

In March of this year, the Jerusalem municipality sent a letter to private schools in East Jerusalem that receive allocations from the Israeli authorities. The letter stated that at the start of the 2011-2012 academic year, the schools would be obliged to purchase and only use textbooks prepared by the Jerusalem Education Administration (JEA), a joint body of the municipality and the Israeli Ministry of Education.

These textbooks are already in use in East Jerusalem schools managed by the JEA. According to Jibril, however, Palestinians in East Jerusalem have at all levels rejected the plan to use them in private schools, since it is viewed as being politically motivated.

“The real reason behind all this story of curriculum is actually political. We’re talking about a radical [Israeli] government that is trying to impose its own identity on the Palestinians in East Jerusalem. Knowing that Israel doesn’t recognize Palestinian identity, it is a political reflection rather than [for] any kind of educational or pedagogical [reason],” Jibril said.

The move to introduce the Israeli curriculum came after Israeli parliament member Alex Miller from the far-right Israel Beiteinu Party, who heads the Knesset’s Education Committee, stated during a meeting about unauthorized curricula in the education system that, in East Jerusalem, “the whole curriculum should and must be Israeli.” Continue reading

Children not exempt from widespread torture in Israeli detention

[The falsehood of US, EU, UN, and ICC’s claims to be the advocates and defenders of international human rights is once-again revealed by this, yet another set of attacks on the human rights of people who “don’t matter and don’t count” to these global powers.  It will only stop when the people take the power away from these monsters.  --  Frontlines ed.]

The Electronic Intifada
6 July 2011
Sleep-deprived and suffering from a broken leg, 16-year-old Muhammad Halabiyeh endured days of torture at the hands of Israeli soldiers and police officers, who punched him repeatedly in the face and abdomen, shoved needles into his hand and leg and threatened the Palestinian teenager with sexual abuse.

Arrested near his home in the East Jerusalem neighborhood of Abu Dis in February 2010, Halabiyeh confessed after days of abuse and torture to the charge that he threw a Molotov cocktail at an Israeli army base. More than one year after his arrest, which was spent in Israeli custody, Halabiyeh was found guilty in an Israeli military court.

His conviction came despite the fact that the Israeli military judge in his case stated that she believed the teenager was tortured. However, the judge argued that there was no evidence that his confession was the direct result of the torture he endured. Halabiyeh’s sentencing hearing has now been postponed until 19 July.

“[The judge] said there’s no direct connection that he confessed later on in the police station because of this torture,” Sahar Francis, the director of Addameer, the Prisoners’ Support and Human Rights Association, told The Electronic Intifada. Addameer represented Halabiyeh in his trial at the Ofer military court.

“She didn’t believe that he was threatened the whole way [to the police station]. He said in the court that he was [afraid of more torture], but she decided not to give much weight [to this],” Francis added. Continue reading

On “Obama vs. Netanyahu” — What Does It Mean?

from the series, “All People’s Liberation”, by Collision Course Video:

The political establishments of the US and Israel — long time partners in settler-colonialist and ethnic cleansing projects against the Palestinian people in historic Palestine — had a series of exchanges from May 19-May 24, 2011, because the changing situation across the Arab world has prompted some differences in the US and Israeli agendas.

Breaking down these changing circumstances and agendas, and what they will mean for the Palestinian and other peoples of the Middle East, Dr. Hatem Bazian (UC Berkeley professor) and Jeffrey Blankfort (writer and radio host) had this conversation.

The video is by Collision Course Video Productions, for the series on “All People’s Liberation.”

Obama’s speech to AIPAC affirms commitment to Israel and US policies that doom it

Move Over AIPAC activists demonstrate outside the AIPAC 2011 Policy Conference which featured President Obama as a keynote speaker.

electronic intifada

by Ali Abunimah on Sun, 05/22/2011Following his speech on Thursday night, and his meeting with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Friday, US President Barack Obama spoke to the 2011 Policy Conference of AIPAC, the influential Israel lobby today.

Obama’s speech today contains a number of interesting elements of the United States’ and the president’s view: a hard-headed realism about the deep trouble Israel is in and an equally hard-headed determination to keep doing the same things that will make Israel’s prospects poorer over the long-run while prolonging the suffering for Palestinians. These contradictory impulses, will only heighten conflict and do little to advance the president’s stated goal: peace.

Obama also addressed the fake controversy following Netanyahu’s public rejection on Friday of the president’s reference to a peace “based on the 1967 lines.”

Here are some of the key points of Obama’s speech with analysis. Continue reading

Palestinians plan fresh protests to mark war anniversary

Committee behind last weekend’s protests says they were ‘just the beginning’, and calls for further marches on 5 June

Palestinian protesters cross the Israel-Syria border

Harriet Sherwood in Jerusalem

guardian.co.uk, Sunday 22 May 2011

Palestinian refugees are planning a fresh round of marches on Israel next month, amid signs that grassroots protests could gain momentum from deep disillusion over the prospects for peace talks and the impact of the Arab Spring.

A committee behind demonstrations last weekend, in which 14 people were killed on the Lebanese and Syrian borders, have called for further protests on 5 June to mark the anniversary of the 1967 Six Day War, during which Israel occupied the West Bank, Gaza, East Jerusalem and the Golan Heights.

The rallying call is likely to be given added impetus by Israel’s rejection on Friday of Barack Obama’s explicit backing for a Palestinian state based on pre-1967 borders.

The committee, which said last weekend’s protests were “just the beginning”, said thousands would march to the pre-1967 “green line” between Israel and the West Bank, the border with Gaza, the fence between the occupied Golan Heights and Syria, and Israel’s international border with Lebanon. Continue reading

Jordan Times: “Palestinians unite as they mark Nakba”

Friday, May 13, 2011
Activists hold Palestinian flags and orange flags of an Arab Israeli  political movement during a rally marking the anniversary of the ‘Nakba’, Arabic for catastrophe, in East Jerusalem on Saturday (AP photo  by Sebastian Scheiner)
Activists hold Palestinian flags and orange flags of an Arab Israeli political movement during a rally marking the anniversary of the ‘Nakba’, Arabic for catastrophe, in East Jerusalem on Saturday (AP photo by Sebastian Scheiner)
AgenciesLeaders of rival Palestinian factions displayed rare unity on Saturday as they marked their “day of catastrophe” or Nakba at a rally in Gaza, raising hopes of reconciliation between the two bitter rival parties.

It was the first time leaders from Islamist Hamas and the more secular Fateh movement of Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas had shared the platform at a large public gathering since Hamas seized the Gaza Strip from Fateh in a 2007 civil war.

Palestinians mark “nakba day” on May 15, the day in 1948 when more than 760,000 Palestinians – estimated today to number 4.7 million with their descendants – were pushed into exile or driven out of their homes in the conflict that followed Israel’s creation 62 years ago. Continue reading