Every passing day brings us proof that the great powers that support Israel use double standards when dealing with the Palestinian situation. Their alleged commitment to protect human rights and civilians under occupation become muddled and even forgotten when it comes to Palestinians in the occupied territories. The right to resist foreign occupation, which is a universal principle, becomes an act of terrorism in the Palestinian case. Israel has frozen the peace process and instead activated policies to annex more Palestinian land to build additional colonies as part of plans to annex the entire area of the occupied territories as a final solution.
A purely Jewish state without any Palestinian presence in it, especially in occupied Jerusalem, is now the ultimate agenda in Israel. The Judaisation of historic Palestine is the only scenario adhered to by the expansionist far-right in Israel and everything else is stalling to gain time in order to build more colonies, thus making it impossible to establish a Palestinian state. The world is only watching while Israel is doing all it can with impunity in its ethnic cleansing process in historical Palestine. For their part, the Palestinians are aiding the Zionist agenda with persisting inner divisions and conflicts, thus, strengthening the Israeli colonial occupation by their disunity.
Israel’s main concern is to protect internal tranquillity and security, which must be maintained by all means, allowing its government time to build more colonies and thus creating new facts on the ground that could eliminate the very possibility of an independent and viable state of Palestine. Such tranquillity can only be maintained by keeping the Palestinian National Authority (PNA) involved in futile political arguments going nowhere, with Palestinian police and security forces used to prevent any actions against the ongoing building of colonies and actual annexation of Palestinian land. Maintaining the status quo — which usually involves construction or expansion of colonies — is what the Israeli government desires most and the only thing that is being offered to the Palestinians, while Israel is fully engaged in other scenarios that only lead to the same result — the complete Judaisation of historical Palestine with occupied Jerusalem topping the list. To enhance this scenario, Israel is trying to use the PNA to guard the Zionist colonies. The only choice left to the PNA is to quit playing this Israeli game and return to its roots as the Palestinian Liberation Organisation it was — dedicated to national liberation and not a security firm standing guard watching the theft of Palestinian land and the gradual eradication of the Palestinian identity of historical Palestine.
A second circulating Israeli scenario calls for a temporary Palestinian state with temporary borders, i.e. creating a mini-Palestinian state encompassing the majority of the Palestinian population in occupied West Bank and dividing them into small pockets, thus “officially” relieving Israel of being an occupying power and helping it create a semblance of a two-state solution desired by the international community. In this scenario, the PNA has to play the role of a security guard employed by Israel to protect the colonial Israeli presence in the annexed Palestinian territories. It also gives Israel the opportunity to annex the large colonies a move that will consequently define Israeli borders without negotiations with the Palestinians. If the PNA does not agree to this temporary political settlement, Israel is ready to declare a unilateral separation/disengagement, which will save it from a ‘demographic catastrophe’ where the Palestinian population will exceed the number of the Jewish population in the near future in historic Palestine — a development that is bound to usher in the only viable solution of one state with Hebrew and Arab Palestinian populations.
Three out of four Israelis chose, in a national poll, to be separated from the Palestinians with separate roads for each, in addition to the completion of the Apartheid Wall to make it permanent. The Judaisation of Historic Palestine is a work in progress. Some analysts are also convinced that Israel has a very tempting scenario up its sleeve that suggests turning Gaza into a Dubai-like free trade zone under the Hamas government and connected to Egypt, thus, making its separation from the West Bank a permanent one. This scenario reflects financial expediency rather than preventing a unity of the Palestinians, thus, keeping Israel fully in charge of the West Bank while carrying on its Judaisation process.
At a recent seminar that focused on Israel’s unilateral steps, the Palestinian Institute for Strategic Political Studies discussed at a meeting in the city of Bireh in Palestine ways and means to form a strategic Palestinian policy “to prevent the occupying Zionist state from gaining from the advantages resulting from the status quo. On the table appeared the need to immediately forge a unity among the Palestinian factions to be based on the goals of attaining Palestinian national rights, an end to the Israeli colonial occupation, the right of return and the right to self-determination.
The only choice left for the Palestinians to stop the Judaisation of occupied Jerusalem and the rest of Historic Palestine is to achieve national unity and get rid of all the restrictive strings of the Oslo Accords. A Palestinian national strategy should return the Palestinian cause to the global arena where the United Nations in 1947 gave birth to two states; Hebrew and Palestinian states, but only the former was established. The question that has now to be answered is: Are we, the Arabs, especially the Palestinians, still alive to listen and heed?
Professor As’ad Abdul Rahman is the Chairman of the Palestinian Encyclopaedia.