We need to understand that the acts highlighted above, along with countless others, are not random, not arbitrary. Rather, they are manifestations of a purposeful structural violence. The purpose: to secure a Jewish Supremacist State between the Mediterranean Sea and the Jordan River. In this light, Palestinians living on the land that is rightfully theirs are inconveniences, impediments preventing fulfilment of the perverse mission.
The brute, destructive force of yellow Bulldozers – British made by the JCB company – used to destroy Palestinian homes and livelihoods serves as a chillingly apposite symbol of the ‘might is right’ ideology of the Jewish State. ‘We do these things because we can. Who will stop us?’
‘Who will stop us,’ indeed. How has it come to be that, for example, UK mainstream media appear to be afflicted by a plague of blind eyes, and defective hearing? On Israel: See no evil, hear no evil.
UK mainstream media is, to say the least, timid when it comes to covering Palestine-Israel. How is it that a British ally, an EU partner in trade and arms deals, is never called to account? How is it that Israel-UK economic interests are allowed to be so closely aligned? Atrocities such as the ones that introduced this blog – daily occurrences – simply do not get reported. True, there has been some coverage of the attempted takeover by Jewish Settlers of Palestinian homes in East Jerusalem’s Sheikh Jarrah and Silwan districts and some coverage of the fallout from Israel’s attack on Gaza. But no attempt is made to examine the nature of the Israeli State, and the gross abuses that its spawns.
Is the mainstream British Media running scared? Scared of whom? The Board of Deputies who falsely claim to represent the UK Jewish community? Scared of being tainted by charges of anti-Semitism, the favoured weapon of the Israel right or wrong constituency? It can be a cliche, the term ‘The Establishment’, but there is something decidedly odd, I’d say alarming, at the pusillanimous stance of mainstream media and politicians when it comes to Palestine/Israel. It suggests an Establishment view: Keep stum.
This is odd also from another angle. Not only here in the UK, but also in the USA, and many other countries, there is strong popular support, especially among younger people, for Palestinians. Yet mainstream media and Establishment politicians are failing to address this potential audience.
Cloak of silence and dissembling: The two state ‘solution’
At every level the Palestine/Israel issue is either ignored, or subject to the recitation of empty pieties. One such is the prayerful hope of a two-state ‘solution’ between the Mediterranean and the Jordan River: a dominant, armed, Jewish Israeli state taking the greater part of the land; and a shrunken Palestinian state. This really has become a non-runner. To name but a few reasons:
- 60% percent of the West Bank is designated Area C under the direct control of Israel. There is no prospect of Israel relinquishing it. The remaining 40% is divided between Area A & B, both under effective Israeli control, though area A is notionally under full Palestinian Authority control;
- There are some 237 Jewish-only Settlements housing around 580,000 Settlers on the West Bank. These are fully-functioning towns with all utilities and modern infrastructure. The residents are not contemplating moving out;
- The Settlements are on around 25% of the land of the West Bank;
- Extreme, violent Jewish religious zealots establish ‘outposts’ – aimed at extending Jewish land-grabs – on Palestinian land with what amounts to the connivance – see no evil, hear no evil – of IDF and Boarder police;
- Israel has built, and continues to build, what it calls a Separation Wall notionally between Green Line Israel and Palestinian territory, but in practice swallow’s tracts of Palestinian land.
Notwithstanding the calculated falsity of maintaining that a two-state option exists, this is still the public position of, for example: King Abdulla of Jordan; Egypt’s President Abdel-Fattah al-Sissi; USA President Biden; United Kingdom; European Union; the Arab League to name a few, all eagerly nailing their colours to the two-state mast.
What this dismal line-up ignores – ignores, but is surely known – is that Israel has not the slightest intention of agreeing to a two-state outcome. Its purpose is to, quietly, quietly, with the political class and mainstream media looking the other way, take unto itself the OPT to become Greater Israel, a state that by its nature will be – actually is now – a state founded on Apartheid. It has to be that for it can only rule – that is the right word – by removing and limiting the rights of the millions of Palestinians who live in the OPT. This is all perfectly clear. One demonstration being Israel’s Prime Minister Bennet addressing the UN General Assembly and not once mentioning Palestinians or Palestine. Another is USA President Bidens’s comments to the General Assembly, as reported by Haaretz, ‘… the president reiterated the United States’ unequivocal support for “an independent Jewish state,” while emphasizing his belief that “a two-state solution is the best way to ensure Israel’s future as a Jewish democratic state, living in peace alongside a viable, sovereign, and democratic Palestinian state.”
But he added, lest our hopes soar too high, “We are a long way from that goal at this moment, but we must never allow ourselves to give up on the possibility of progress,” Biden said.’ In colloquial terms, this is known as kicking an issue into the long grass.
I’m not going to pick up in this blog Biden’s formulaic, but ill-conceived, endorsement of Israel ‘as a Jewish democratic state’. I, and many others, have commented on this oxymoron that fails to see just how incompatible those two terms – ‘democratic’ and ‘Jewish State’ – are. They cannot adhere one to the other. They repel each other.
Truth be told
The range of actors identified in this article – States, International bodies, media group, quiescent politicians – have decided that Palestinians and Palestine are best forgotten about.
As with Israel’s approach to the OPT, the situation is to be managed. The so-called International Community will support, perhaps even encourage, Israel to institute minor ameliorations to Palestinians’ living conditions. They’ll even help fund it. Fund the Occupation, in other words.
From Israel’s perspective, this is just fine for it creates by default a permissive space that allows it to continue to perpetuate its legion cruelties, all in service to achieving a Greater Israel.