International al-Quds Day
Today is International al-Quds Day. On this day of Solidarity for Palestinians everywhere, lets look at several prominent Palestinians’ views on their current condition.
First, from Ingrid Jaradat Gassner…
[She is the director of Badil Resource Center for Palestinian Residency and Refugee Rights in Bethlehem, Palestine (www.badil.org). She holds an MA in education and sociology and has worked in the Palestinian NGO sector since 1988.]
"Solidarity with the entire Palestinian people"
AN: How do you analyze the current situation?
IJG: […]It was clear that this regime [Israel] does not respect international law, but continues to commit violations over and over again. We debated what is needed to change this. […]
At the same time, we again found a situation where governments and UN institutions and bodies, people in the UN absolutely refuse to recognize that Israel is a colonial apartheid regime. They have the information — there is an unwillingness to engage. Until we reach a situation where powerful actors recognize that we live in a situation of colonialism, apartheid and occupation, not much can be done here. All the international interventions will not protect the rights of Palestinians, because they miss the root causes. All efforts of constructive engagement with Israel, like for example that of the European Union, will not work. What works is to treat Israel like apartheid South Africa was treated. Put pressure on Israel, isolate Israel until it understands there are certain rules they have to comply with.
Right now, [Israel is] building bantustans in the [West Bank], and there is displacement, the blockade of the Gaza Strip. We are moving farther away from a peace scenario. We are deep in a colonial apartheid scenario.
Pressing Netanyahu is the key to success in Mideast peace talks
The Israeli leader is not entering the Mideast peace talks in good faith. If he can derail the talks, he will.
…Already, there are more than 30 Israeli laws that serve to discriminate against Palestinians. Abbas cannot be expected to sign off on such an injustice. Not only would he be consigning Palestinian citizens of Israel to second-class citizenship, he would be stripping away the right of return from Palestinian refugees who long to return to homes and farms stolen from them 62 years ago.
The only way out of the impasse is for Jews to recognize Palestinians as their equals and negotiate with them on that basis. A fair two-state solution requires the abrogation of all laws, both in Israel and the occupied territories, that raise Jews above Palestinians. This is a point the United States, notwithstanding the recent dangerous demagoguery of some of its politicians in seeking to elevate Christian and Jewish religious rights over those held by Muslim Americans, should still understand.
Whether in the United States, Israel or the occupied territories, equal rights before the law is a powerful and crucial concept. And it is one that should be at the forefront of the next round of talks. Obama is a marvelous American choice to deliver the message to an Israeli "democracy" decades late in implementing fundamental legal equality.
About that deliverer of democracy, and, that much needed ‘pressure’ to sway Bibi… From today’s Haaretz…
Palestinian source: U.S. pressuring Abbas to continue talks even if settlements expand
Even if the PA agrees that some settlement blocs will remain in Israeli hands in a future agreement, Abbas cannot agree to a continuation of construction during direct talks, says a senior source.
Gotta love that solidarity, ObamaRahma…!
As-Salamu Alaykum, Alláh-u-Abhá, Shalom, God Bless, and, Peace to all Palestinians around the World…!