Obstructing Palestinian Statehood Begins – by Stephen Lendman
On September 23 in New York, a State Department “Special Briefing” was held. An unnamed “Senior Administration Official” commented on the Quartet’s Palestinian statehood proposal, saying:
“As the Palestinians develop(ed) their own ideas of what was necessary in terms of (petitioning the UN), we were intensively engaged with them in providing ideas for an alternative path.”
That says it all! It reveals the Washington/Israeli/EU/Ban Ki-moon duplicitous strategy to subvert Palestinian statehood by a combination of diversion, delay and exclusion from debate on what Palestinians most want and deserve.
It includes unconditional sovereignty within 1967 borders (22% of historic Palestine), total control over their own lives, Israel’s occupation and Gaza’s siege ended, fixed borders, diaspora Palestinians’ right of return, settlement construction ended, and East Jerusalem as their capital.
In other words, they want what all independent states enjoy, including fair and open elections to choose their own leaders democratically, free from outside influence.
They also need to know the collaborationist credentials of leaders representing them – namely, Abbas and Prime Minister Fayyad, conspiring against them while pretending otherwise.
Why else would Israeli President Shimon Peres suggest that Abbas is best for Israel, saying:
“I call on my friend, Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, who I respect and acknowledge as the best leader Israel will work with, to return to the negotiating table.”
Nonetheless, on return to Ramallah Sunday, he was welcomed like a rock star. Thousands gathered to greet him. They cheered when he claimed a “Palestinian Spring” arrived. Indications are his popularity soared.
He addressed supporters, saying:
“We have told the world that there is the Arab Spring, but the Palestinian Spring has been born. A popular spring, a populist spring, a spring of peaceful struggle that will reach its goal.”
He also said a “long path” remains. “There are those who would put out obstacles….but with your presence they will fall and we will reach our end.”
In contrast, Netanyahu said settlement construction will continue. Negotiated peace must precede statehood, and establishing one within pre-1967 borders is rejected.
Sunday on NBC’s Meet the Press, he said his “advice” for Abbas was:
“If you want to get to peace, put all your preconditions to the side.”
Despite negotiating in good faith for decades, Palestinians never achieved peace because Washington and Israel won’t tolerate it.
Meet the Press host David Gregory didn’t explain. Nor did he question why after 63 years Palestinian statehood is still denied, or ask what right have Israel and Washington to decide.
In fact, Abbas proposing it is rhetoric, not reality with Washington, key EU allies and Ban Ki-moon against it.
On September 26, Frank Barak, Russell Tribunal Committee on Palestine Organizing Committee member headlined his Electronic Intifada article, “The UN is part of Palestine’s problem,” saying:
“The UN is one of the most undemocratic bodies in the world.” One of a select five among its 193 members may veto what all others want. Decision-making by minority rules, including a minority of one.
“The UN is therefore part of the problem and will never bring justice to the Palestinians.” In 1947, its partition plan unjustly gave future Israel (with one-third of the population) 56% of Palestine, including its choicest areas.
Thereafter, Israel violated or ignored with impunity dozens of Security Council and General Assembly resolutions “upholding the Palestinians’ right of self-determination, demanding an end of occupation and colonization and Israeli withdrawal from occupied lands, and the right of return of the refugees.”
Whatever Israel wants it gets because it’s “part of the masters’ clique. Israel is in their club and represents the same interests….In history, there has never been a case of a master relinquishing power for philosophical and altruistic reasons.”
Liberation depends on sustained committed struggle. Palestinians are on their own to achieve it. Collaborationist leaders won’t help. Understanding that reality is step one toward long delayed justice that won’t ever come without it.
Examples throughout history show people “taking matters into their own hands” works. Masters also know it delivers what they reject. “The thought of it happening again sends shivers into their expensive suits.” It’s high time “shivers” turned to fear.
The Charade Begins
Instead, informal Security Council discussions began Monday. On September 26, Haaretz writer Shlomo Shamir headlined, “US Security Council to begin informal debate on Palestinian statehood,” saying:
“Currently, the council’s five permanent members are split over the PA’s request, so the consultations are not expected to lead to a formal vote anytime in the near future, UN sources said.”
According to the UN’s Western deputy head of mission:
“It’s highly likely that consultations will continue for some weeks. The Palestinian application is considered an extremely sensitive issue, and in particular, it’s a source of controversy between the council’s two leading powers, the United States and Russia. Therefore, no quick decision that would produce an official debate and vote is expected.”
In fact, Washington plans obstruction and delay to subvert statehood entirely. Achieving it depends on whether Abbas follows proper UN procedure, including petitioning the General Assembly for full membership.
The Security Council recommends new members. Only the General Assembly admits them by a simple two-thirds majority. Palestinians have more than enough support.
Moreover, under the 1950 Uniting for Peace Resolution 377, the GA can override Security Council vetos or rejection, provided Abbas follows procedure.
Instead expect him to accept rule of one authority, saying he tried his best, when, in fact, doing so is betrayal.
At best, he may petition the General Assembly to upgrade Palestine’s status short of full membership. Doing so accepts defeat, leaving Palestinians at square one.
It’s in their hands to demand better, to struggle for what’s only possible that way.
Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago and can be reached at email@example.com.
Also visit his blog site at sjlendman.blogspot.com and listen to cutting-edge discussions with distinguished guests on the Progressive Radio News Hour on the Progressive Radio Network Thursdays at 10AM US Central time and Saturdays and Sundays at noon. All programs are archived for easy listening.