One Minute to Midnight

[22-10-2013 10:27 AM]

By Jafar M Ramini

The fast train that has been hurtling through our blighted land for the last hundred years is gathering momentum and reaching its final destination. Palestine. A Jewish state with no place for any Palestinian in it.

This tragic journey has continued unchecked and unhindered despite many UN resolutions over many years calling it illegal and against all known international law and conventions. Yet it thunders on.

We, the Palestinians, despite our lack of armies and resources, have been trying in vain to bring this destructive machine to a halt. We have paid, many times over, with our blood, our children’s lives and futures, our land, our freedoms, our homes, our orchards, our holy places, with everything we hold dear. There are millions of us, scattered all over the world, mostly in refugee camps, denied even the most basic of human rights and dignity. The Arab nation has abandoned us and the Muslim Ummah is too busy with their tribal rivalries and infighting to pay us any attention. Yes, every now and then, an Arab or a Muslim leader will stand up and give us lip service, but that is about it.

The most powerful Arab country, Egypt, signed a peace treaty with Israel in 1979, to be followed by Jordan, another ‘front-line’ Arab country in 1994. Saudi Arabia and other Arabian Gulf countries have all but signed a peace treaty with Israel despite all their pronouncements to the contrary. They are cooperating with Israel on security matters and some of them have allowed Israel to open offices in their capitals. This is what the war criminal, Netanyahu had to say in the Knesset only last week.
“Arabs states have begun to realise that Israel is not their enemy.”
Israeli news agency, Ynet said, “The Arab states have begun to see that Tel Aviv could be a steady and reliable ally.” So much for Arab solidarity and support for our cause.

We all know that the PLO, at its lowest ebb, embarked on a doomed peace process with Israel. As a result, they signed the OSLO Agreement in 1993, which brought the Palestinian Authority into being. To make matters worse, the PA signed the Paris Accord known as the Protocol on Economic Relations between the Government of the State of Israel and the PA, representing the Palestinian people, giving Israel virtually total control over our finances and resources. The main Palestinian factions, Fatah and Hamas have added to the tragedy by declaring war upon each other and shedding yet more Palestinian blood and causing more Palestinian division and suffering.

Despite all of this and the compounded losses in lives, land and resources, in August of this year the PA was frog-marched to a new round of the misnamed ‘Peace Talks’.

Peace is not what this process is about. It’s about intimidation, coercion and subjugation. The more the PA negotiates with Israel the more Israel confiscates Palestinian land and builds more settlements and erects more obstacles in the way of the Palestinian population. Israel is doing this without fear or caution. Who is going to stop them? The international community is terrified and cowed by their infiltration and might. Even their most powerful ally, the United States of America is fearful of what Israel could do if America even considers stopping its total support.

As far back as 1957, John Foster Dulles, the then Secretary of State of the United States of America had this to say about the hold Israel has on American domestic and foreign policy.

“I am aware how almost impossible it is in this country to carry out a foreign policy [in the Middle East] not approved by the Jews. I am very much concerned over the fact that the Jewish influence here is completely dominating the scene and making it almost impossible to get congress to do anything they don’t approve of. The Israeli embassy is practically dictating to the congress through influential Jewish people in the country”
–Secretary of State John Foster Dulles, February, 1957
Fast forward to 2009, when Arial Sharon spelled it out in no uncertain terms when he told Shimon Peres, his then foreign minister, “Don’t worry about the Americans. We Jews control America and the Americans know it.”
Just to how immense is the danger Israel poses to the safety and security of the entire world this is what Professor Martin van Creveld, professor of Military History at the Hebrew University in Jerusalem had to say to British writer, David Hirst in 2003.
“We possess several hundred atomic warheads and rockets and can launch them at targets in all directions, perhaps even at Rome. Most European capitals are targets for our air force. Let me quote General Moshe Dayan: "Israel must be like a mad dog, too dangerous to bother”. We have the capability to take the world down with us. And I can assure you that that will happen before Israel goes under.”
Even the EU which has shown luke-warm support to our plight by restricting funds to Israeli enterprises that operate illegal settlements and as such profit from the occupation are having a change of heart. It has been reported in Maariv Newspaper that Israeli and European officials are nearing an agreement that will allow Israeli institutions to continue operating freely in the West Bank while enjoying EU grants.
This is the Israel that the PA is trying to negotiate “peace” with. Peace and harmony can only be achieved between equals. How equal is the balance here?
The Palestinian negotiators cannot even agree between themselves what they are negotiating over and the end results. This is what chief negotiator, Dr. Saeb Erekat had to say.
“Israel does not seek peace.” He maintains that Israel is “too busy building settlements to start building peace,” and that “Israel is sabotaging the entire peace process”. Yet Abu Mazen says to the Pope that he hopes a peace agreement will be signed soon between Israel and the Palestinians.
Only yesterday Abu Mazen said that Israel is changing the conflict from a political one to a religious one. Keep hoping, Abu Mazen and keep blundering from one concession to another. Peace will never happen. They want it all. Lock, stock and barrel.
The latest manifestation of the Israeli love and pursuit of peace is this. Israel has just announced that the Al-Ibrahimi Mosque will be closed to Muslim Worshipers on Friday 25th and Saturday 26th October 2013 to enable Jewish settlers to use the Mosque to celebrate the Jewish holiday of Shabbat, Chayei, Sarah.
The head of Islamic Endowment in Hebron, Taysir Abu Sneineh said that the restriction of Muslim access to the mosque was part of a larger campaign by the Israeli authorities to change the features of the mosque into a Jewish temple.

Add to that their almost daily incursions on Al Aqsa Mosque in Jerusalem and you will find that Abu Mazen was right for a change. It is a bloody religious war. Let’s face it, it always has been. In 1994, Brooklyn born, Israeli settler, Baruch Goldstein, took an automatic rifle and mowed down Muslims as they knelt in prayer at Al-Ibrahimi Mosque. 54 Palestinians were killed and about 170 wounded in the Hebron mosque shooting. And the carnage continues.
Hamas, who finds itself more and more besieged and isolated, has called an end to the peace negotiations and a rise of the third intifada. Perhaps they are right.
We, the Palestinian nation everywhere, cannot afford any longer to be mere bystanders and sit on the fence. This is what we all should do before the final minute ticks away
Tell The Palestinian Authority that:

1) You are not our representatives
2) You are not mandated.
3) You are not authorized to negotiate on our behalf.
4) You are not the sole custodians of our cause.
5) Palestine is not your inheritance to gift away.
6) Walk away from this shameful, farcical charade.
7) Dissolve your Authority and put the burden of the occupation on the occupiers not the occupied.
8) Start a meaningful dialogue with all the Palestinian factions and unite under the nation’s flag for the nation’s cause.
9) Declare civil disobedience and boycott the occupation.
10) Stop ignoring us. We must be consulted. It’s our land and our future and we have a right to speak our minds.
Please engage and please stand up and be counted.
Freedom is never given.

Freedom and liberty must be gained.

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