Palestine Monitor, 2 May 2011
Dr. Mustafa Barghouthi condemns Israel’s freezing of Palestinian funding as blackmail, piracy and hypocritical
Arabiat, Blogging from Birzeit Univeristy Campus, Palestine, 1 May 2011
Try them out. It’s rewarding in a childish way.
“Fateh off Netanyahu!”
“I will kick the living Hamas out of you.”
“You stupid motherFateh, get off the road!”
“What a Hamasface.”
“Your mother is a dirty Fatehsucking bish.”
“I don’t give a flying Hamas.”
Once upon a time, Palestine held its first transparent democratic election. Some Palestinians were prevented from voting as Israel sprung up flying checkpoints here and there, thus stalling them until it was too late. Nevertheless, the average turnout was around 74%. The parties running for elections numbered six, but it was essentially a two horse race between Fateh and Hamas. Long story short, Hamas won the majority of the seats in the Palestinian Legislative Council (74 to Fateh’s 45). Sugar Daddy Bush Jr did not like the outcome at all. Many were thrown by surprise at the result. And thus, the USA nodded its head sagaciously as it completely undermined the whole election on the basis that Arabs still don’t know how democracy works, and implemented that theory by causing internal strife/civil war/political separation of two territories after an attempted US backed coup backfired/installing American trained and supplied security forces whose job is to crush dissent in the West Bank/ and finally, giving its blessing to an imposed siege on the Gaza strip. Don’t forget the three billion dollars annual military aid that enforces Israel’s security, i.e. occupation!
White America, do you see why we blame you for our misery?
The Fateh led PA’s sole concern was to continue funneling in those millions of dollars in foreign aid, promoting an illusion of a feasible state complete with a booming industry, while arresting anyone who had wet dreams/nightmares about Hamas.
Hamas’ sole concern was to revel in its new “emirate”, painting Gaza green in the midst of international ostracism while it continued to promote the facade of resistance by firing shoddy tinpots at nearby settlements, which culminated in an internationally complicit massacre in December 08/January 09.
Fateh disallowed demonstrations that has anything to do with Hamas, securing its grip on a newly formed police state. All traces of green flags disappeared, replaced by the desperate gaudiness of the yellow Fateh flags.
In Gaza, Hamas flaunted its corrupted demeanor and autocratic nature as it too suppressed any dissenting voices. We are not aware of the atmosphere in the universities there but it requires little imagination.
At Birzeit University, students affiliated with Hamas were promptly arrested and in some cases tortured, while the PA turned a blind eye and the university administration proved its deadly incompetence yet again. The student party affiliated with Fateh never missed a chance to publicly diss Hamas and spread its vile propaganda. Hamas withdrew from student elections for two years, in protest at the treatment and continued imprisonment of its party members at the hands of other students.
Israel and her supporters congratulated themselves over glasses filled with Gazan children’s blood to what they saw as a win-win situation for them. Hamas “Destroyer of Israel” were effectively isolated and under siege (the other 1.5 million population were viewed as collateral damage) and Fateh “Negotiations Evermore” were their sniveling lapdogs, eagerly pushing for Israeli land takeovers in return for money. The real losers, the average Palestinian, witnessed with anguish as the Palestinian cause and self-determination were essentially shelved somewhere among history’s back pages. Calls for unity fell on deaf ears.
Fateh, the instant collaborator of Israel. Hamas, a ruthless regime. One thing they have in common is their despotic self-interests at the costs of the Palestinians, their tyrannical incumbency.
On April 27th, the two sides signed reconciliatory papers to the surprise of everyone. Our sarcastic demands for them to kiss and make up were finally heeded. Brokered by a new Egypt, Hamas and Fateh seemingly put an end to five years of malicious discontent and animosity. How well was this news received? The Guardian has the best sub-heading: Celebration in Gaza City is dispersed by police wielding batons, while Ramallah seems more concerned with Champions League.
Ain’t that the truth.
People shouldn’t be heralding this as a new era for Palestinian unity that would now commonly advocate the Palestinian cause and seek repercussions from Israel for its continued apartheid and occupation polices, etc. The whole situation smells fishy. Why did Hamas and Fateh sign an agreement on Wednesday? Why now? What gives?
Fateh’s response to the Arab Spring revolutions was to pay lip service to changes in the political system for fear of having the serfs revolting. It lost a major ally in Mubarak’s Egypt, and found itself being propelled by one less puppet string. Likewise, Hamas is trying to steer away from any ties to the Syrian regime, that funder of annihilative cache of weapons, as Dr Bashar al Assad’s penchant for killing protesters did not go by unnoticed.
How in the world can these two ideologies be married into an agreement? How will the PA operate when the international community shuns it thus forgoing any financial aid? What sort of interim government will this joint effort be like? Where does Israel fit in this equation? In fact, a lot of our questions mirror Ali Abunimeh’s, whose perspective on this so-called progressive step forward is a must read.
If there is an agreement on a joint “government” how can it possibly function without Israeli approval? Will Israel allow Hamas ministers be able to operate freely in the occupied West Bank? Will PA officials be able to move freely between the West Bank and Gaza? Israel is effectively at peace with the current Abbas wing of the Palestinian Authority and at war with Hamas. Impossible to see how such a government can operate under Israeli occupation. If anything this proves the impossibility of democracy and normal governance under Israeli military occupation.
Netanyahu made a somber appearance on TV. He said that the PA must chose either peace with Israel, or peace with Hamas. This takes us back to the conceptual meaning of Peace in Israelispeak. We’re tempted to shout back, “Bring it on suckers!” but who are we kidding.
Considering just how bad Fateh and Hamas screwed us over, we have every right to be skeptical. The reaction to this unity has been quite telling, as contrary to what the parties must have thought, people did not go out celebrating, wave flags, or chant in one spirit.
The whole point of unity should be “unity of goals for the Palestinian people” and not unity of factions. Factional unity, is it really in our best interests? Considering the agendas and actions of Fateh and Hamas in recent years and how that had affected the Palestinians, it’s really a non-question.
Honestly, when we heard the news we were waiting for further explication. “And then what?” Our noses crumpled in disdain because there’s gotta be some kind of ulterior motive. Whatever happened to Fayyad’s 2011 Palestinian state, one that excludes Gaza?
On the bright side, maybe the hunger strikers can find a new hobby now.
On campus we saw a sickening sight. In front of the student council building, all celebratory-like, the loudspeakers were out once again, a small mast had Fateh, Hamas, and PFLP flags on it, and students took turns eulogizing “O unity, thou honorable thing” shit into the microphone. The same students that not too long ago made it their favorite pastime to denounce Hamas and exalt Fateh on every occasion. We kept walking.
Arabiat, a Regular Ode to the Hardships and Joy of Living as expatriates of our Countries of Citizenship in the Holy Land…as Falastiniyyas!
This article was contributed to RamallahOnline by Arabiat, Follow them at http://lifeonbirzeitcampus.blogspot.com
Uri Avnery, 30 April 2011
IN ONE word: Bravo!
The news about the reconciliation agreement between Fatah and Hamas is good for peace. If the final difficulties are ironed out and a full agreement is signed by the two leaders, it will be a huge step forward for the Palestinians – and for us.
There is no sense in making peace with half a people. Making peace with the entire Palestinian people may be more difficult, but will be infinitely more fruitful.
Binyamin Netanyahu also says Bravo. Since the government of Israel has declared Hamas a terrorist organization with whom there will be no dealings whatsoever, Netanyahu can now put an end to any talk about peace negotiations with the Palestinian Authority. What, peace with a Palestinian government that includes terrorists? Never! End of discussion.
Two bravos, but such a difference.
THE ISRAELI debate about Arab unity goes back a long way. It already started in the early fifties, when the idea of pan-Arab unity raised its head. Gamal Abd-al-Nasser hoisted this banner in Egypt, and the pan-Arab Baath movement became a force in several countries (long before it degenerated into local Mafias in Iraq and Syria).
Nahum Goldman, President of the World Zionist Organization, argued that pan-Arab unity was good for Israel. He believed that peace was necessary for the existence of Israel, and that it would take all the Arab countries together to have the courage to make it.
David Ben-Gurion, Israel’s Prime Minister, thought that peace was bad for Israel, at least until Zionism had achieved all its (publicly undefined) goals. In a state of war, unity among Arabs was a danger that had to be prevented at all costs.
Goldman, the most brilliant coward I ever knew, did not have the courage of his convictions. Ben-Gurion was far less brilliant, but much more determined.
NOW WE have the same problem all over again.
Netanyahu and his band of peace saboteurs want to prevent Palestinian unity at all costs. They do not want peace, because peace would prevent Israel from achieving the Zionist goals, as they conceive them: a Jewish state in all of historical Palestine, from the sea to the Jordan River (at least). The conflict is going to last for a long, long time to come, and the more divided the enemy, the better.
As a matter of fact, the very emergence of Hamas was influenced by this calculation. The Israeli occupation authorities deliberately encouraged the Islamic movement, which later became Hamas, as a counterweight to the secular nationalist Fatah, which was then conceived as the main enemy.
Later, the Israeli government deliberately fostered the division between the West Bank and the Gaza Strip by violating the Oslo agreement and refusing to open the four “safe passages” between the two territories provided for in the agreement. Not one was open for a single day. The geographical separation brought about the political one.
When Hamas won the January 2006 Palestinian elections, surprising everybody including itself, the Israeli government declared that it would have no dealings with any Palestinian government in which Hamas was represented. It ordered – there is no other word – the US and EU governments to follow suit. Thus the Palestinian Unity Government was brought down.
The next step was an Israeli-American effort to install a strongman of their choosing as dictator of the Gaza Strip, the bulwark of Hamas. The chosen hero was Muhammad Dahlan, a local chieftain. It was not a very good choice – the Israeli security chief recently disclosed that Dahlan had collapsed sobbing into his arms. After a short battle, Hamas took direct control of the Gaza Strip.
A FRATRICIDAL split in a liberation movement is not an exception. It is almost the rule.
The Irish revolutionary movement was an outstanding example. In this country we had the fight between the Hagana and the Irgun, which at times became violent and very ugly. It was Menachem Begin, then the Irgun commander, who prevented a full-fledged civil war.
The Palestinian people, with all the odds against them, can hardly afford such a disaster. The split has generated intense mutual hatred between comrades who spent time in Israeli prison together. Hamas accused the Palestinian Authority – with some justification – of cooperating with the Israeli government against them, urging the Israelis and the Egyptians to tighten the brutal blockade against the Gaza Strip, even preventing a deal for the release of the Israeli prisoner-of-war, Gilad Shalit, in order to block the release of Hamas activists and their return to the West Bank. Many Hamas activists suffer in Palestinian prisons, and the lot of Fatah activists in the Gaza Strip is no more joyous.
Yet both Fatah and Hamas are minorities in Palestine. The great mass of the Palestinian people desperately want unity and a joint struggle to end the occupation. If the final reconciliation agreement is signed by Mahmoud Abbas and Khalid Meshaal, Palestinians everywhere will be jubilant.
BINYAMIN NETANYAHU is jubilant already. The ink was not yet dry on the preliminary agreement initialed in Cairo, when Netanyahu made a solemn speech on TV, something like an address to the nation after an historic event.
“You have to choose between us and Hamas,” he told the Palestinian Authority. That would not be too difficult – one the one side a brutal occupation regime, on the other Palestinian brothers with a different ideology.
But this stupid threat was not the main point of the statement. What Netanyahu told us was that there would be no dealings with a Palestinian Authority connected in any way with the “terrorist Hamas”.
The whole thing is a huge relief for Netanyahu. He has been invited by the new Republican masters to address the US Congress next month and had nothing to say. Nor had he anything to offer the UN, which is about to recognize the State of Palestine this coming September. Now he has: peace is impossible, all Palestinians are terrorists who want to throw us into the sea. Ergo: no peace, no negotiations, no nothing.
IF ONE really wants peace, the message should of course be quite different.
Hamas is a part of Palestinian reality. Sure, it is extremist, but as the British have taught us many times, it is better to make peace with extremists than with moderates. Make peace with the moderates, and you must still deal with the extremists. Make peace with the extremists, and the business is finished.
Actually, Hamas is not quite as extreme as it likes to present itself. It has declared many times that it will accept a peace agreement based on the 1967 lines and signed by Mahmoud Abbas if it is ratified by the people in a referendum or a vote in parliament. Accepting the Palestinian Authority means accepting the Oslo agreement, on which the PA is based – including the mutual recognition of Israel and the Palestine Liberation Organization. In Islam, as in all other religions, God’s word is definitely final, but it can be “interpreted” any way needed. Don’t we Jews know.
What made both sides more flexible? Both have lost their patrons – Fatah its Egyptian protector, Hosny Mubarak, and Hamas its Syrian protector, Bashar al-Assad, who cannot be relied upon anymore. That has brought both sides to face reality: Palestinians stand alone, so they had better unite.
For peace-oriented Israelis, it will be a great relief to deal with a united Palestinian people and with a united Palestinian territory. Israel can do a lot to help this along: open at long last an exterritorial free passage between the West Bank and Gaza, put an end to the stupid and cruel blockade of the Gaza Strip (which has become even more idiotic with the elimination of the Egyptian collaborator), let the Gazans open their port, airport and borders. Israel must accept the fact that religious elements are now a part of the political scene all over the Arab world. They will become institutionalized and, probably, far more “moderate”. That is part of the new reality in the Arab world.
The emergence of Palestinian unity should be welcomed by Israel, as well as by the European nations and the United States. They should get ready to recognize the State of Palestine within the 1967 borders. They should encourage the holding of free and democratic Palestinian elections and accept their results, whatever they may be.
The wind of the Arab Spring is blowing in Palestine too. Bravo!
Stephen Lendman, 2 April 2011
On April 27, the International Middle East Media Center headlined, “Rival Palestinian Factions Reach Reconciliation Agreement,” saying:
Meeting in Cairo, Palestinian media sources announced a Hamas – Fatah reconciliation draft agreement, signaling hope for rapprochement between the two sides.
Both parties agreed to form a transitional government soon. The two delegations, headed by Fatah President Mahmoud Abbas and Hamas leader Khaled Mashaal discussed security issues and ways to coordinate forces on both sides. They also chose an election date, but didn’t disclose it.
“A Hamas official (Izzat Ar-Rishiq) reported that all points of differences with Fatah have been overcome….Egyptian sources said that the two parties will be invited into Egypt soon (for an) official signing ceremony.”
Egypt’s official MENA news agency confirmed “a complete understanding after talks on all the points, including the formation of a transitional government with a specific mandate and setting a date for elections.”
Fatah delegation chief Azzam Al-Ahmad confirmed the report, saying both sides agreed to a “government of independents….tasked with preparing for presidential and legislative elections within a year.”
Palestinian factions welcomed the announcement, hoping years of conflict would end. Islamic Jihad’s Khaled Al Batsh said his organization welcomed the development, hoping implementation will begin quickly. He also called for ending West Bank political arrests, saying Palestinian priorities include resistance, unity, independence, the right of return, and Jerusalem as Palestine’s capital.
PLC deputy head Dr. Ahmad Bahar called the agreement historic, thanking Egypt for hosting and moderating important talks.
Dr. Abdul-Aziz Shiqaqi, head of Gaza’s coalition of independent figures, said the deal breaks new ground, offering a new reconciliation phase. Khalil Assaf, representing West Bank independent figures, called the agreement the best and most important development this year.
The Palestinian People Party (PPP) also welcomed the deal, hoping implementation will begin soon, as well as calling for efforts to marshal international support for Palestinian independence with Jerusalem its capital.
Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu reacted sharply, demanding Abbas:
“choose between peace with Israel or peace with Hamas. There cannot be peace with both because Hamas strives to destroy the state of Israel and says so openly. I think that the very idea of reconciliation shows the weakness of the Palestinian Authority and creates the prospect that Hamas could retake control of Judea and Samaria just like it took control of the Gaza Strip.”
Netanyahu also said all necessary measures will be taken to continue Gaza’s siege, including blocking planned humanitarian flotillas.
He and other Israeli officials repeat the same canards, notably with regard to peace, reconciliation, and denying Hamas’ longstanding willingness to recognize Israel in return for Palestinian sovereignty inside pre-1967 borders, just 22% of its original homeland.
In September, it now hopes the UN General Assembly will affirm what Israel for decades spurned, including peace to perpetuate its war agenda based on lies and deception about Hamas threatening its security.
Getting Washington to bogusly declare it a terrorist organization, Western media ignore its legitimacy as Palestine’s democratically elected government, facts conveniently replaced by spurious claims about terrorism. In other words, twisting them to fit policy that includes on-and-off again wars, violence, land theft, severe repression, targeted assassinations, and violation of fundamental international law and standards, as well as core Judaic values, ones Israel long ago abandoned.
On April 27, New York Times writers Ethan Bronner and Isabel Kershner also covered the story headlining, “Fatah and Hamas Announce Outline of Deal,” saying:
They “create(d) an interim unity government (and agreed to) hold elections within a year, a surprise move that promised to reshape” the regional diplomatic landscape. Perhaps regional uprisings influenced the move. Also, Al Jazeera’s January released Palestine Papers. They revealed covert PA willingness to compromise much in return for little, amounting to de facto complicity and unilateral surrender to Israeli demands, a shameless betrayal like Oslo, what Edward Said called a Palestinian Versailles.
It gives pause about what PA negotiators now have in mind. This time, however, they’re dealing with Hamas, not Israel, but that specter remains powerfully omnipresent in lockstep with its Washington paymaster/partner.
Gaza Al-Azhar University Professor Mkhaimar Abusada believes the PA’s failure to negotiate peace with Israel, as well as anger over a February US Security Council resolution veto against new settlement construction encouraged Fatah to talk.
Hamas representative Moussa Abu Marzouk said:
“We have ended a painful period in the history of the Palestinian people where Palestinian division had prevailed. We gave the occupation a great opportunity to expand the settlements because of this division. Today we turn this page and open a new” one.
Hamas official Mahmoud al-Zahar said both sides agreed to changes in interim PLO leadership, a tribunal for elections, and a date. Both sides will nominate government members, a 12-judge election tribunal, and an oversight committee to handle security.
On April 27, Washington Post writer Jennifer Rubin headlined, “Congress to PA: No US aid if you merge with Hamas,” saying:
Florida Republican House Foreign Affairs chairwoman Ileana Ros-Lehiten (a member of America’s extremist far right) signaled ending US aid, repeating Netanyahu’s lies, saying:
“The reported agreement between Fatah and Hamas means that a Foreign Terrorist Organization which has called for the destruction of Israel will be part of the (PA) government. US taxpayer funds should not and must not be used to support those who threaten US security, our interests, and our vital ally, Israel.”
New York Democrat Rep. Gary Ackerman, a notorious pro-Israel supporter, called the deal “a recipe for failure, mixed with violence, leading to disaster,” sounding as extremist as Ros-Lehiten. Other members of both houses concurred, succumbing to Israeli Lobby pressure to go along or face recrimination in 2012. Mindful also of Israeli support, selling their souls the price they pay keep it.
Defense Minister Ehud Barak said Israel would only negotiate with a Palestinian unity government that “dismantles (its) terror infrastructures and recognizes Israel as well as past PLO (negotiated) agreements.”
Israel’s foreign minister, Avigdor Lieberman, facing indictment for fraud, money laundering, obstruction of justice, and more, said Israel won’t negotiate with the interim government, adding:
“One of the clauses of the agreement is the release of hundreds of Hamas prisoners from Palestinian jails, which would flood the West Bank with armed terrorists, and the IDF must prepare accordingly….This agreement crosses a red line. Hamas has been defined as a terrorist organization….in addition to the fact that it has always been known that no talks can be held with groups calling for Israel’s destruction.”
Israel’s president Shimon Peres said:
“The move, as it stands is a fatal mistake,” nor will Israel negotiate with a “bona fide terrorist organization.” The deal “would lead to a regression and prevent the formation of a Palestinian state.”
Through public rhetoric and behind the scenes pressure, including through the Israeli Lobby, Israel is going all out to prevent reconciliation, a unity government, peace, and UN General Assembly recognition of an independent Palestine within 1967 borders this September.
Instead it plans to stay belligerent, choose violence over diplomacy, continue settlement construction, keep Gaza blockaded, launch air attacks with powerful weapons, make regular incursions into Palestinian communities targeting nonviolent civilians, and effectively reign daily terror on Palestine like it’s done for over six decades, blaming victims of its own crimes, still with world community support.
As a result, it’s for Palestinians to pursue their own agenda until one day liberated and free. A unity government and UN membership are important steps toward it.
Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago and can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. 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.
Sami Jamil Jadallah, 29 April 2011
Within minutes of the Hamas-Fatah of initialing the reconciliation agreement in Cairo Bibi Netanyahu was out in public threatening Mahmoud Abbas to choose between peace with Israel (as if Israel ever wanted peace) and reconciliation with Hamas. The thug masquerading as Israeli Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman making more threats on the Palestinian authority with severe consequences.
And as soon as the agreement in Cairo was initialed that Israel and AIPAC, its Fifth Column in the USA was also in full gear waking up its vicious dogs in the American Knesset to make public announcement denouncing the agreement reached in Cairo and threatening to cut off all funding to the Palestinian Authority. Congresswoman Ileana Ros-Berman and Congressman Howard Berman were the first ones to denounce the agreement in Washington, followed by the many other dogs.
When Hamas swept the Palestinian election on January 27, 2006, Ramallah, Tel-Aviv, Washington, Cairo and to a certain extent Amman went into over drive to make sure that Hamas will not be able to govern, and that Fatah as the rightful and eternal ruling party of the Palestinian must continue to rule and govern the West Bank and Gaza under the management and security contract reached with Israel under Oslo.
Of course Tel-Aviv, Washington, Mubarak Cairo all gave the excuses that since Hamas does not formally recognize Israel, then it has no right to rule and govern even though it won a sweeping election. Of course the same rule does not apply to Likud or Yisrael Beituna. Ramallah, Tel-Aviv, Cairo and Washington showed the Palestinians and the world how Arab and especially Palestinian democracy should work.
This of course raises very fundamental question and issue of who is qualified to give recognition to what conditions or terms that must be included in the letter of recognition. In the case of Israel, the late Yasser Arafat as Chairman of the Palestine Liberation Organization gave such recognition to Israel in the letter dated September 9th, 1993 and addressed to the late Yitzhak Rabin the Prime Minister of Israel. In his letter Arafat states “ the PLO recognizes the right of the State of Israel to exist in peace and security…. renounces the use of terrorism, and other acts of violence and will assume responsibilities over all PLO elements and personnel in order to assume their compliance, prevent violence and discipline violators”
Arafat also sent on the same date September 9, 1993 to John Jorgen Holst the Foreign Minister of Norway “ The PLO encourages and calls upon the Palestinian people in the West Bank and Gaza Strip to take part in the steps leading to the normalization of life, rejection of violence and terrorism”.
A simple reading of both letters from Arafat admits the followings 1) The PLO as the ‘representative of the Palestinian people gives recognition of Israel to live in peace and security. 2) Arafat admits the PLO as a terrorist organization engaged in violence and terrorism. 3) That all of the PLO activities all these years were not acts of “liberation” but acts of terrorism and all those who died fighting for the PLO are not “martyrs” but terrorists. 4) That the First Intifada was not an act of liberation and resistances against the Jewish Occupation but acts of terrorism.
Of course not sure if Arafat and the not so brilliant advisors around him understood what they were signing and offering Israel. Arafat and the PLO gave full recognition of Israel without recognized borders, that Israel is not an “occupying country” with sovereignty over Jewish settlements and Jewish settlers and of course total sovereign control of Area C. Arafat in essence changed the name of the “Palestine Liberation Organization” to the “Palestine Terrorist Organization”. I am sure Arafat and his advisors overlooked the fact that Israel is the only country without defined borders.
Now we need to ask what did Arafat and the Palestine Liberation Organization or better Palestine Terrorist Organization got in return from Israel. Yitzhak Rabin writing to Arafat on September 9, 1993 “ in response to your letter of September 9, 1993 I wish to confirm to you that in light of the PLO commitments included in your letter, the Government of Israel has decided to recognize the PLO as the representative of the Palestinian people”.
Again, simple reading of Rabin letter. It did not recognize a Palestinian State but recognized an organization that may disband and go out of business at any time. It never recognized let alone admits it is an occupying power and always till now continue to refer to the West Bank as Judea and Samaria and at best refers to the area as either “disputed territories” or “settled territories”. It also never recognized the rights of the Palestinians to East Jerusalem and of course never mentioned the refugees. Both Arafat and Rabin left all key and important issues to “negotiations” or better “peace process”.
Now it seems every one specially Bibi Netanyahu and Ovigdor Lieberman never signed on to Oslo and never recognized even the PLO as representative of the Palestine people. The question is why does Israel demand Hamas, a party within the Palestinian people recognize Israel when in fact both the Likud and Yisrael Beituna never recognized the PLO. It is hard to understand why this double standards, and should the future diplomacy requires all parties and all groups within a state sign off on any diplomatic recognition of another country. In the case of the US, both the Republican Party, the Democratic Party, the NRA, the Tea Party, the AARP must sign off with the US State Department when it extends recognition to an emerging sovereign state.
Until Likud and Yisrael Beituna give full recognition to the PLO, to the Palestinian State, not Hamas, not any one else within the Palestinian organizations should give recognition to Israel. I guess the letters of exchange are only between Israeli labor Party and the PLO. I will not doubt the day will come when Israel and the US will demand every Palestinian man, women and child sign and execute a formal statement recognizing the State of Israel.
Sami Jamil Jadallah is an international legal and business consultant and is the founder and director of Palestine Agency and Palestine Documentation Center www.palestineagency.com and founder and owner of several business in technology and services. Sami also runs an online website (Jefferson Corner). His articles are also featured on PalestineNote and Veterans Today.
Articles on RamallahOnline by Sami Jamil Jadallah
Egypt brokers successful Fateh and Hamas reconciliation last night.
Editor Palestine Monitor, 28 April 2011
“[Palestinian unity] is the best weapon we have against the occupation,” said Senior Fatah Central Committee member Azam al-Ahmad following the announcement of reconciliation agreement in Cairo.
At 9:00pm last night, representatives from Palestine’s two authorities, Fateh and Hamas, announced their reconciliation following talks begun in Damascus earlier this year. Now in Egypt, the reunified Palsetinian leaderships from Gaza and the West Bank have invited all of Palestine’s disparate groups to gather together in Cairo, set aside their differences, and focus on ending the occupation.
Two days ago, tens of thousands of Palestinians pressured Fateh and Hamas to reconcile via a Facebook page, building on the momentum and demands of the March 15 youth movement.
Diplomatic sources told the Jerusalem Post that “the recent upheavals in the Arab world, as well as the release in February by Al Jazeera of the ’Palestine Papers’ that provided details of Israeli-Palestinian negotiations under Ehud Olmert’s government, has led the Palestinians to hunker down in rigid positions. The sources said that this ’rigidity’ in the Palestinian positions was made clear to Quartet representatives when they met twice over the last three weeks with Saeb Erekat.”
Al Jazeera English’s senior political analyst Marwan Bishara stated the reconciliation deal is a result of the geopolitical reality following the Arab Spring sweeping Palestine and Israel’s neighbors.
“At the end, you could say that President Abbas has lost his patron in Egypt, which is President Mubarak, and Hamas is more on less facing almost similar trouble now, with Bashar Al-Assad [Syria’s president] facing his own trouble in Damascus,”Bishara said. “So with the US keeping a distance, Israel not delivering the goods on the peace process and the settlements, it was time for Palestinians to come together and agree on what they basically agreed on almost a year and a half ago.”
“Even before the details of the reconciliation deal were officially [announced], Israel attacked the agreement,” Egyptian official Al-Ahmad said.
President Benjamin Netanyahu was the first to respond to the deal. He went on the attack.
“The PA must choose either peace with Israel or peace with Hamas. There is no possibility for peace with both,” Netanyahu said. Beset on all sides – Lebanon, Syria, Jordan and Egypt are all facing differeing levels of insurrection and revolution – Knesset is keeping both eyes open as the Arab Spring blossoms across the region. If a new regime in Egypt will accept Sadat-era peace agreements or old gas deals are questions worrying Israel, comfortable in the status quo of hushed yet rapid settlement growth, a siege around Gaza, and increasing interior culls of citizen freedoms.
Netanyahu added that his ultimatum would change evaporate if a reunified Palestinian movememnt disavowed violence, recognized Israel and accept previous agreements like the Oslo Accords.
Barak Obama’s administration has tread lightly, with the National Security Council expressing guarded optimism for a potential empowerment of democratically-elected Hamas, a group considered by Washington a terrorist organization. Congressmen told the New York Times the millions of US funds to the PA will be reconsidered.
Republican politicians will host Netanyahu in Washington next week, and have called for suspension of aid to the PA. Israeli Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman and other right-wing Israeli politicians have also threatened to withhold tax revenue collected by Israel because the PA has crossed the red line.
Sami Jamil Jadallah, 27 Feb 2011
This may come as a big disappointing surprise to Mahmoud Abbas, Khalid Misha’al, Ahmed Qurai, Ismail Haniyah, Yaser Abed-Rabou, Sami Zouhri, to Hamas and its leadership in both Damascus and Gaza and to Fatah and PLO leadership in Ramallah and in Beit El. Hamas and Fatah are not Palestine and they do not represent separately or jointly the people neither of Palestine, nor for that matter does the PLO represent the Palestinian people under Jewish Occupation or in the Diaspora.
It is true there was an election and the people of “Occupied Palestine” voted for Mahmoud Abbas as president of the Palestinian Authority, the Jewish Occupation local governing authority, and the people also voted for Hamas as the “majority party” in the Palestine Legislative Council, the elected body for the local governing authority. However the majority of Palestinians representing those outside of Occupied Palestine never voted for Mahmoud Abbas, never voted for Khalid Misha’al, never voted for Hamas, never voted for Fatah certainly never voted for the PLO as the ‘sole representative of the Palestinian people”. Keeping in mind it is the “Arab leadership” whose own legitimacy is questioned is the body that voted for Arafat and the PLO. The Diaspora people never voted for Arafat or the PLO. Even the Palestine National Congress was never elected by the people through direct elections and as such it never had legitimacy, and its performance is shameful but disgusting if not criminally negligent.
In order for the PLO, Fatah or Hamas to claim representation of the Palestinian people, then there must be a vote, a vote of the Palestinian people in Jordan, in Lebanon, in Syria, in Saudi Arabia, in Kuwait, in Qatar, Bahrain, UAE, in Europe, in US, in Egypt, Tunisia, Libya, Australia or wherever the Palestinian people are present and not withstanding their current “nationality”. Otherwise the claims of representations by the PLO, Hamas or Fatah are null and void, certainly illegitimate.
For the PLO or Fatah leadership to waive the Rights of Return, to give up East Jerusalem to give up half of the Occupied Territories, it does not have the rights of representations nor the legitimacy to waive these rights or to give full recognition to Israel, notwithstanding the fact that Yasser Arafat and Mahmoud Abbas signed off on Palestine in Oslo. No one ever voted for Arafat when he signed negotiated and signed Oslo. And contrary to what he thought, he was never Palestine, he was never the Palestinian people, at best he was an abusive, corrupt, incompetent failed narcissist leader no different from Saddam Hussain, Hafiz Assad, Muamar Qaddafi and to a certain extent Hosni Mubarak, let alone Bin Ali.
Perhaps both the leadership of Hamas and Fatah has to think of who and what they are? And have to think it is best for them, for Palestine and for the people to simply disappear, get lost, get our “erhal” before they end up like Bin Ali and Hosni Mubarak and soon Qaddafi.
Now Mahmoud Abbas and Salam Fayyad, to pre-empt the anger sweeping the Arab world against its failed, corrupt and dictatorial leadership are trying their best to show they are democratic, with democratic values (same values of their friend Tipsy Livni) and that the Palestinian Authority as the Jewish Occupation governing authority are keen on re-establishing and opening for business governing institutions they decided to close down on the order of Israel and its former allies Mubarak/Suleiman. Salam Fayyad is even going further showing his “openness” by soliciting names of potential ministers on his Facebook page. I do not understand how someone (Abbas) whose term in office expired more than 2 years continue to have legitimacy to even govern let alone dismiss an illegitimate and illegal government and ask an illegal and illegitimate prime minister to form a new government? May be the Palestinian Authority is not different from Muamar Qaddafi’s Libya.
On the other hand, Khalid Misha’al and Hamas leadership also have to understand the fact they won the local election once does not mean they have a monopoly to govern and that all those who voted for Hamas are members of Hamas. According to news report and analysis of the election, Hamas won the last election because the people were fed up with a corrupt, incompetent and failed Fatah and people were fed with the abuses of Fatah security forces and the arrogant behavior of Fatah leadership as they go flaunting their newly acquired richness and their VIP passes to zip through Israeli checkpoints while thousands of Palestinians have to endure long hours if not days to pass through.
While Hamas did not have a chance to govern under Oslo, it had a chance to show its color, its management and governing style in Gaza and to say the least it was not very impressive at least to me. There were lots of civil and political abuse of power and abuse of people and their private and public liberty. And no need to mention Hamas ‘armed resistance” capabilities and ability to provide credible defense against Israel. Hamas has to come down from the tree in believing it can “liberate” Palestine through its “armed resistance” and Fatah has to come down from the tree in believing it is a successful liberation organization with a monopoly right to rule and govern for ever.
Born in the Palestinian city of El-Bireh ( presently under Israeli Military Occupation, Armed Jewish thugs and settlers). Immigrated to the US in 62. After graduating from high school in Gary, Indiana was drafted into the US Army ( 66-68) received the Leadership Award from the US 6th Army NCO Academy in Ft. Lewis, Washington. Five of us brothers where in US military service about the same time. Graduated from Indiana University with BA-72, Master of Public Affairs-74 and Juris Doctor-77, and in senior year at IU,was elected Chairman of the Indiana Student Association. Sami Jamil Jadallah is an international legal and business consultant and is the founder and director of Palestine Agency and Palestine Documentation Center www.palestineagency.com and founder and owner of several business in technology and services. Sami also runs an online website (Jefferson Corner)
Nick Marouf, Ramallah, 17 Feb 2011
Hundreds of Palestinians from various factions gathered today at noon at Al Manara Circle to call for an “End to the Divisions”. It was a call for national unity, with three clearly stated goals:
The Demonstration marched from the Al Manara Circle through town, and made a u-turn by Ramallah Flowers shop and headed back to the Al Manara where national chants for unity. Various political figures participated in the march as a sign of support.
Towards the end of the demonstration it appears that Palestinian Security forces pulled a person from the crowd, forcefully moving him from one side of the street to the other. This ultimately broke up the location of the demonstration as the remaining 100 plus demonstrators moved in to follow the guy being dragged away down the street. There was no immediate information available as why he was being pulled away.