Diplomatic dupery

Updated January 30, 2020

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“NONSENSE” and “a thousand no’s” is how Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas reacted when he heard President Donald Trump unveil a plan whose only aim seemed to be to pamper the America-Israel Public Affairs Committee in an election year.

Mr Abbas rejected the plan, and declared his people “will not kneel and we will not surrender”.

With Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu standing beside him, an American president who has upheld Israel’s occupation of a bit of even non-Palestinian territory — Syria’s Golan Heights — gave a verdict that was obviously ex parte, because there was no representative from the very people whose land was the subject of this diplomatic deception.

The ‘deal’ would invite ridicule because it brazenly upholds Israel’s crimes against the Palestinian people and underwrites the Jewish state’s unending violations of international treaties — to most of which America is party.

By accepting his plan, Mr Trump said, Israel had taken “a giant step toward peace”.

What exactly is this perfidy eulogised by Mr Trump? Answer: Israel will stop building new settlements on the West Bank for four years.

In other words, if the Palestinian Authority recognises Israeli sovereignty over the existing settlements, the Zionist state will after four years begin an open-ended renewal of the process of theft of Palestinian territory.

During this ‘freeze’, Palestinian statehood will be ‘negotiated’.

Moreover, the word ‘sovereignty’ is missing from the Trump idiom because it visualises a Palestinian state with its capital in eastern Jerusalem provided the Palestinian people take steps to become ‘self-governing’— a big diplomatic hokum.

The talks between Israel and the Palestinian Authority have remained suspended since 2014, because the Palestinians realised — perhaps too late — that Israel has no intention of giving up its pursuit of lebensraum, and that its sole aim is to delay the talks to enable it to change the West Bank’s demographic character.

Given the Arab-Islamic world’s powerlessness, there is little it can do to make Israel attach some sanctity to the agreements it signs.

The latest American plan serves to add to the heaps of treaties Israel and America have signed on a two-state solution. The most categorical of these documents was the 1993 Declaration of Principles — called the “peace of the brave” by former president Bill Clinton — but Israel destroyed this peace edifice brick by brick, and neither the Arab-Islamic world nor an America subservient to Israel had the courage to break Zionist hubris.

Published in Dawn, January 30th, 2020