The Nakba Is Ongoing, It Didn’t End In 1948

19 May 2022

Source: Al Mayadeen

Robert Inlakesh 

For us to simply classify the Nakba as a single historical event, would be an incorrect framing, as the collection of atrocities visited on the Palestinian people by the Zionist regime represents an ongoing attempt to solidify the dominance of “Israel’s” settler-colonial project.

If “Israel” had already completed its project, it would have declared its borders, it has never done this and is still in the process of carving itself a State out of the Levant

By now most people familiar with the Palestinian cause know well of the horrific ethnic cleansing campaign that took place between 1947-9, during the creation of the regime that calls itself “Israel”. Little however, know much about the ethnic cleansing ongoing today, or perhaps their knowledge is limited to isolated cases.

The Nakba, or ethnic cleansing of Palestine, is often defined as a historical event in which over half of Palestine’s villages, towns, and cities were destroyed, and 450 towns and villages depopulated of their Palestinian inhabitants, amounting to the forced ethnic displacement of around 800,000 people. The word Nakba means “catastrophe”, which is what is used to refer to that time, but when we speak of al-Nakba in English, what we are doing is using a term with which we refer to a historical event often meaning the ethnic cleansing of Palestine. 

Recently, Palestinian-American congresswoman, Rashida Tlaib, introduced a House Resolution which would see the United States government recognise the Palestinian Nakba. “This Sunday [Nakba Day] was a day of solemn remembrance of all the lives lost, families displaced, and neighborhoods destroyed during the violence and horror of the Nakba. The scars bourn by the close to 800,000 Palestinians who were forced from their family homes and their communities, and those killed are burned into the souls of the people who lived through the Nakba,” said Tlaib. Although this would certainly be a major achievement to gain such recognition of Palestinian suffering, in essence meaning that the US government would be admitting the historic crime that the Zionist terrorist forces committed prior to declaring themselves a State, it is important that we not disconnect the past from the present.

The goal of today’s Israeli regime is very much the same as it was back in 1947, to occupy as much land as possible, with as few Palestinians on it as possible. In order to achieve such a goal, the settler-colonial project has taken different forms and used various tactics over the past 74 years, yet that same goal remains intact. 

The 1950’s saw large-scale incursions into the Gaza Strip and the further displacement of more refugees during this process, whilst those Palestinians who remained inside what would become “Israel”, were kept under military rule. Often known as the 1948 Palestinians, who today have Israeli citizenships, this portion of the Palestinian population consists of many who were considered to be “present absentees” by the Israeli regime, which translates to; the people who fled their villages and remained in what became “Israel” but were refused their right to return to their original villages. Israel quickly made use of laws implemented by the British occupation regime in Palestine, like ‘Article 125 of the Defense (Emergency) Regulations’, which Israel used as a legal basis for making Palestinian villages “closed military zones”, hence preventing the displaced natives from returning to their houses. Israel also implemented the 1950 Absentee Property Law, which is broad in its definitive language and would be used to declare displaced Palestinians as “absentees” in order to steal their homes. Between 1948 and 1950, it is also believed that Israel ethnically cleansed a further 40,000 Bedouin Palestinians, whilst also destroying more Palestinian villages along the Lebanese border and expelling thousands more Palestinians until 1956.

In 1967, during what was called the ‘Naksa’ (setback), again the tactics slightly changed, Israel had decided to illegally occupy all of historic Palestine and even beyond, expelling 300,000 Palestinians from their homes in the process. In 1969, roughly 100,000 more were forced to flee villages around the Jordan Valley area after successive Israeli air raids and military assaults against both Palestinian and Jordanian villages. 

Without summing up all of the cases of ethnic cleansing throughout the 74 years of the Zionist regimes settler colonialist expansion, it suffices to say this, the very same tactics and laws are being used by “Israel” today to do the exact same thing they did in the past. 

In the Naqab, where the majority of Palestinian Bedouins live today, Israel is attempting to ghettoize the people there. This means forcing them into a small number of so-called “recognised villages” and ethnically cleansing some 40 unrecognized villages, this is a throwback to the suffering of the people of the Naqab during and after 1948, when Zionist forces rounded up the remaining 11,000 Bedouin’s – of a community that were 100,000 prior to 1948 – and forced them to live in an area called al-Siyaj, where they were under strict martial law rule until 1965. Israel is today using the Jewish National Fund to work on “agricultural projects”, similar to what occurred in 1948, in order to usurp the lands of Bedouins. 

In the West Bank, the largest portion of “Area C”, is considered to be where “closed military zones” are, meaning that Palestinians are forbidden from entering these areas. In Area C (60% of the West Bank) it is also near impossible for Palestinians to get a building permit to construct a new home. The plan to ethnically cleanse the 1,000 Palestinian residents of the village of Masafer Yatta is just the latest in a long line of plans to expel Palestinians from their villages in the West Bank. Nevertheless, Israeli illegal settlers are granted a near carte blanche to establish outposts and settlements wherever they please, despite the fact that even by Israeli law many of these outposts are illegal. Israel is also using the “Absentees Property Law” to ethnically cleanse Palestinians from their homes in East al-Quds today, as we see in Silwan and Sheikh Jarrah, in addition to areas in Haifa and Jaffa. 

I had the pleasure of working on producing a short documentary with Redfish, called ‘The Palestinian Nakba: In Memory and the Present’, in which we interviewed survivors of the 1948 Nakba, as well as Palestinians from the younger generations who are surviving it today. Unfortunately, this short documentary report has been censored in all corners of the internet. Due to Redfish – like many other platforms that report information from an alternative and critical perspective – having been booted off of Youtube and other social media platforms, the voices and stories of Palestinians are by proxy being silenced. It is this sort of content that attempts to portray the true story of the Nakba from a Palestinian perspective, yet the public are being robbed off this knowledge.

For us to simply classify the Nakba as a single historical event, would be an incorrect framing, as the collection of atrocities visited on the Palestinian people by the Zionist regime represents an ongoing attempt to solidify the dominance of “Israel’s” settler-colonial project. To say that the ethnic cleansing of Palestine was simply taking place around the time of 1948 would be, in a way, bowing to the Zionist concept that their “State” model won and that the Palestinians have already been defeated. The Palestinian resistance is most certainly not defeated, this is an ongoing struggle and an ongoing ethnic cleansing campaign, which fits into “Israel’s” settler-colonial ambitions. Naming one single event as The Nakba is correct, but when isolating the concept of the ethnic cleansing of Palestine to atrocities visited on Palestinians singularly during 1948, we begin to paint a different picture of what the true picture is.

Many of the same legal concepts, language, arguments, and tactics that were used to ethnically cleanse Palestine in 1947 are today being used to do the same thing and the examples of this are clear for all to see. This is an ongoing battle, one of a people – the Palestinians – who are fighting to expel an invading and occupying usurper entity – the Zionist regime. If “Israel” had already completed its project, it would have declared its borders, it has never done this and is still in the process of carving itself a State out of the Levant, therefore everything “Israel” is doing today is part of its expansionist mission and for it to stand as a ethno-supremacist “State” it must cement itself on all the land it illegally occupies. Israel has not achieved its goals and the Palestinians are not defeated, therefore the ethnic cleansing of Palestine only ends when one side wins.

The opinions mentioned in this article do not necessarily reflect the opinion of Al mayadeen, but rather express the opinion of its writer exclusively.

74 Years of Historical Injustice: The Creation of “Israel”

18 May 2022

Source: Al Mayadeen English

Hussam AbdelKareem 

The British colonialists viewed the Zionist movement as a tool for their imperial designs and hence the Balfour Declaration was issued in 1917.

74 Years of Historical Injustice: The Creation of “Israel”

“Al-Nakba” is the Arabic term used to commemorate the creation of the “State of Israel” on May 15, 1948. “Al Nakba” literally means “catastrophe”, which best describes how Arab peoples feel about the creation of the Hebrew “state” in Palestine at the expense of its legitimate owners; the Palestinian Arabs.

In 1948, the principles of right and justice were, literally, butchered at the hands of the Zionist gangs and militias known as Haganah, which later turned into the “Israeli Army”. The Jewish Zionists in Palestine, who emigrated mainly from Eastern Europe, were preparing for this day for decades. The Zionists knew very well that they were not welcomed in Palestine and will never be accepted by Arab nations, so conquering the land by force was their sole path to achieving their goals in Palestine. War with the Arabs, in the Zionists’ eyes, was inevitable. Extensive military planning and preparations were undertaken by the Zionists in Palestine since their early arrivals at the beginning of the 20th century and particularly after Great Britain took over Palestine at the end of World War I.

The British colonialists viewed the Zionist movement as a tool for their imperial designs and hence the Balfour Declaration was issued in 1917, confirming Great Britain’s commitment to establishing a “Jewish homeland” in Palestine. The Zionists were receiving full support from the colonial power, which was true to its pledge. Waves of Jewish immigrants arrived from Europe to strengthen the Zionist project in Palestine, and by 1947, when the Palestine partition plan was passed at the UN, the Zionists had a 75,000 semi-army force, which was further aided by another 20,000 Jewish militants in the following year when they waged their war on the Arabs in Palestine in 1948. When the British withdrew their forces from Palestine in 1948, they handed their military installations, camps, and equipment to the Haganah, thus leaving behind them a fully armed and well-trained Jewish army ready to fight the Arabs in Palestine who were practically deprived of weapons and even the slightest means of defense.

The Zionists, who were owning a mere 6% of the land in Palestine in 1948, launched their “war of independence” against the Arabs, which ended in declaring their Jewish “state of Israel” after conquering about 80% of historical Palestine by force and bloodshed. The war was brutal, and the Zionists exhibited utmost forms of savagery and cruelty. Many massacres against civilian Arabs were committed in several cities and villages in Palestine. In one of the most horrible massacres, 254 civilian villagers, including women and children, were killed in cold blood at the hands of Zionist terrorists in the town of Der Yassin, near Jerusalem. Other brutal crimes were also committed in Haifa, Tantura, and Lydd, and the Zionist terror campaign resulted in about 800,000 Palestinian Arabs fleeing their homes and lands and becoming refugees in neighboring Arab countries, namely Jordan, Syria, Lebanon, and Egypt. Total destruction was inflicted by the Haganah on 531 Arab villages all over Palestine. About 85% of the Arabs who lived within the borders of the to-be “State of Israel” were forcefully expelled. It was ethnic cleansing in its ugliest forms.  

The world was watching while these Zionist crimes were happening in Palestine and did practically nothing except some relief efforts and humanitarian aid. Even when “Israel” officially decided to confiscate the Palestinian refugees’ homes, lands, and properties in 1949, the UN did not bother to intervene. Actually, it was no surprise, as the UN was under the domination of the Great Powers of the post-World War II era, particularly the UK and USA, both supporting the new Jewish “state” which was planted in the heart of the Arab world.

After the 1948 war ended, “Israel’ firmly refused to allow the Palestinian refugees to return to their country and demanded they be settled permanently in the other Arab countries. Furthermore, “Israel” refused to admit to the crimes committed by its troops and even declined to acknowledge its responsibility for uprooting the Palestinian Arabs and turning most of them into stateless refugees in miserable camps. The Israeli narrative about the Palestinian refugee problem is that they “voluntarily” left their homes and lands! And “Israel” refused to pay any financial compensation to the refugees whose properties were illegally confiscated and taken over by Jewish settlers. In 1967, another wave of displaced Palestinian refugees was added to the 1948 one to make the problem even worse. Again, the world did nothing apart from some expressions of sorrow for the humanitarian suffering of the refugees. With the help of its patron, the US, “Israel” escaped any accountability for its crimes and actions.

Seven decades have passed, with successive generations, and the status of the Palestinian refugees is still the same; not allowed to return to their historical homeland, not compensated, and not recognized as victims of historical injustice!

“Al-Nakba” will remain the term to be used to describe what happened on May 15, 1948, as long as the Palestinian suffering at the hands of the Israeli occupation continues. It’s a shame that the world allows such a tragedy to go on this long. It’s a shame that “Israel” is left without accountability.

The opinions mentioned in this article do not necessarily reflect the opinion of Al mayadeen, but rather express the opinion of its writer exclusively.

Israeli Human Rights Violations in the Occupied Palestine Weekly Update (12- 18 May 2022)

19 05 2022

Violation of right to life and bodily integrity

Two Palestinians died of wounds they sustained by Israeli occupation forces’ (IOF) fire. Also, 143 civilians, including 5 children, a paramedic, and a journalist, were wounded while dozens of others suffocated and sustained bruises in IOF attacks in the West Bank, including occupied East Jerusalem. 

On 14 May 2022, a Palestinian succumbed to his rubber bullet injury by IOF during clashes at al-Aqsa Mosque yards in occupied East Jerusalem on 22 April.

On 15 May 2022, a Palestinian from Jenin Refugee Camp wounded by IOF’s fire succumbed to his wound at Rambam Hospital, noting that he sustained a bullet injury in the abdomen during IOF’s incursion into Jenin refugee camp on 13 May 2022 to arrest a wanted Palestinian, besiege his house and pound it with missiles. At the time, 12 Palestinians, including 3 children, were injured: 2 sustained serious injuries.

Meanwhile, those injured were victims of excessive use of force that accompanied IOF suppression of peaceful protests and gatherings organized by Palestinian civilians and they were as follows:

13 May: 33 Palestinians, including a photojournalist, were injured due to IOF’s suppression of mourners at journalist Shireen Abu ‘Akleh’s funeral in East Jerusalem. For further information here. On the same day, 2 Palestinians, including a child, were wounded with rubber bullets during IOF’s suppression of Kafr Qaddoum weekly protest in Qalqilya.

14 May: 3 Palestinians sustained rubber bullet wounds during IOF’s suppression of Kafr Qaddoum weekly protest in Qalqilya. On the same day, a Palestinian was injured by IOF’s fire and then arrested near al-Mahkama military checkpoint, northern al-Bireh, allegedly for throwing stones at a settlers’ car.

15 May: 20 Palestinians, including 2 children, were wounded in clashes after IOF suppressed a protest organized in commemoration of Palestinian Nakba near al-Mahkama military checkpoint, northern al-Bireh.  

16 May: 71 Palestinians, including a paramedic, were wounded while 35 others were arrested during IOF’s widespread operation to suppress thousands of Palestinian mourners in the funeral of Waleed al-Sharif, who died 2 days after he was injured.  Also, IOF assaulted journalists and obstructed work of 11 journalists.

17 May: a Palestinian with disability (suffering a mental disorder) was injured by IOF’s fire.  He was then arrested and taken to a hospital in Israel, claiming he attempted to attack soldiers according to a video published by IOF.

So far in 2022, IOF attacks killed 48 Palestinians, including 38 civilians: 10 children, 4 women (one was a journalist) and the rest were activists; 3 of them were assassinated. Also, 693 others were wounded in these attacks, including 68 children, 4 women, and 19 journalists all in the West Bank, except 7 fishermen in the Gaza Strip.

Settler-attacks on Palestinian civilians and their properties:

2 Palestinians, including a human rights defender, were wounded and 50 trees were cut during setters’ attacks in the West Bank.  Details are as follows:

12 May: under IOF’s protection, settlers attacked a human rights defender from Defense for Children Palestine and threw stones at his car on Jenin-Nablus Street near the entrance to evacuated Homish settlement, northwestern Nablus.  As a result, he sustained bruises and his car sustained damage.

13 May: settlers attacked a Palestinian in eastern Yatta in Hebron and smashed windows of al-Ghad al-‘Arabi Channel vehicle during IOF’s suppression of a peaceful protest in the area against an Israel plan to expel thousands of Palestinians from Masafer Yatta area.

18 May: settlers cut 50 olive trees in Yasouf village, eastern Salfit.

So far this year, settlers carried out 123 attacks on Palestinians and their properties in the West Bank.

Land razing, demolitions, confiscation, and settlement expansion

The Israeli occupation authorities demolished 2 houses, rendering a family of 5, including 3 children, homeless.  They also demolished a room and 4 agricultural facilities; IOF razed one dunum and took over 44.6 dunums in the West Bank, including occupied East Jerusalem.  Details are as follows:

On 13 May, IOF handed 2 notices to evacuate a 4.5-dunum land, western Bani Na’im village in Hebron, claiming it is state property. On the same day, IOF demolished a rainwater pool used for irrigation in Marj Na’ajah village, northern Jericho.

On 14 May, IOF forced a Palestinian to self-demolish his house in Sour Baher in occupied East Jerusalem for the second time under the pretext of unlicensed construction, rendering a family of 5 homeless.

On 15 May, IOF handed a house demolition notice, noting that a family of 4 was supposed to move to this 2-story house in western Samou’a village in Hebron.

On 16 May, IOF demolished an under-construction house, a wooden room, and 3 barracks for livestock in al-‘Issawiya village, northeastern occupied East Jerusalem, under the pretext of unlicensed construction.  On the same day, IOF handed 3 notices to demolish 3 barracks used for poultry in Umm ar-Rihan village, southwestern Jenin.

On 17 May, Israeli municipality bulldozers razed a 1000-sqm land and demolished the surrounding steel fences in Shu’fat refugee camp, East Jerusalem.  On the same day, IOF handed military orders to seize 40 dunums in Wadi Fukin village, western Bethlehem, under the pretext that it is state property.

Since the beginning of 2022, IOF made 61 families homeless, a total of 343 persons, including 70 women and 169 children. This was the outcome of IOF demolition of 67 houses and 5 residential tents. IOF also demolished 43 other civilian objects, razed 243 dunums and delivered 64 notices of demolition, cease-construction, and evacuation.

IOF incursions and arrests of Palestinian civilians

IOF conducted 187 incursions into the West Bank, including occupied East Jerusalem. Those incursions included raids and searches of civilian houses and facilities and establishment of checkpoints. During this week’s incursions, 130 Palestinians were arrested, including 2 children and a woman; most of them were arrested in a widescale arrest operation during the funerals of Shireen Abu ‘Akleh and Walid al-Sharif in East Jerusalem.  Also, IOF conducted a limited incursion into eastern Rafah in the southern Gaza Strip.

So far in 2022, IOF conducted 3166 incursions into the West Bank, including occupied East Jerusalem, during which 2,296 Palestinians were arrested, including 226 children and 17 women. IOF also conducted 14 limited incursions into eastern Gaza Strip and arrested 40 Palestinians, including 25 fishermen, 13 persons attempting to enter Israel from the Gaza border area, and 3 travelers via Beit Hanoun “Erez” Crossing.

Closure policy and restrictions on freedom of movement

On 15 May 2022, the Israeli occupation authorities reopened Beit Hanoun “Erez” crossing, northern Gaza Strip, to Palestinian workers and permit holders from Gaza after it had been closed since 03 May.

Meanwhile, the Israeli occupation maintains its illegal and inhuman 15-year closure on the Gaza Strip. Details available in PCHR’s March 2022 monthly update on the Gaza crossings.

In the West Bank, including occupied East Jerusalem, IOF continues to impose restrictions on the freedom of movement. On top of its 108 permanent checkpoints, IOF established 110 temporary military checkpoints this week and arrested a Palestinian at those checkpoints.

So far in 2022, IOF established at least 1,516 checkpoints and arrested 90 Palestinians at those checkpoints.

Jordan issues royal decree restricting Prince Hamzah’s movement and communications

King Abdullah II justified the move against his half-brother, calling him ‘irresponsible’ and accusing him of seeking to sow unrest in the kingdom

May 19 2022

(Photo credit: KHALIL MAZRAAWI/AFP via Getty Images)

ByNews Desk

Jordan’s King Abdullah II approved a royal decree on 19 May to “restrict the contacts, residence, and movements” of his half-brother, Prince Hamzah bin Hussein, who was accused last year of orchestrating an alleged sedition case that shook the Arab country.

In a statement posted on social media, the Royal Hashemite Court of Jordan said it approved this measure due to what it described as the prince’s “irresponsible” behavior, which “could cause instability in the country.”

In early April this year, Prince Hamzah renounced his title of prince and publicly apologized for his behavior.

Abdullah II said he delayed this recent measure to give Hamzah “another chance,” but finally implemented it because the former prince “continues to deny all facts and evidence, is “manipulating reality and living in an illusion,” according to the note.

“I came to the conclusion that he will never change, and my conviction was strengthened with every fact and every word,” the King noted, accusing Hamzah of “seeing himself as the one responsible for the Hashemite legacy,” referring to Jordan’s royal family.

Likewise, King Abdullah also accused the former prince of “turning away from his family for many years,” and “opting for negative behavior … and being surrounded by people who promote the opposition.”

On 3 April, Prince Hamzah bin Hussein announced the relinquishment of his royal title.

Prince Hamzah bin Hussein made the announcement on Twitter.

The statement explains that the decision was based on “current approaches, policies and methods of our institutions” that could not be reconciled with the convictions of Prince Hamzah.

But while the statement refrained from criticizing the King or other ruling elites, the move was seen as a continuation of the strained relations between Hamzah and his half-brother.

Hamzah has clashed with the Royal Hashemite Court of Jordan in the past.

In early April 2021, Jordanian authorities accused Hamzah of having had contact with external parties and carrying out “movements and activities” aimed at destabilizing the security of Jordan, for which he was placed under house arrest, state news agency Petra reported.

The State Security Court sentenced two members of the royal court to 15 years in prison after finding them guilty of “incitement against the king, carrying hostile intentions against the state and seeking to sow anarchy and sedition in the country.”

JordanKing Abdullah IIPrince Hamzah bin HusseinrestrictionsRoyal Hashemite Court of JordanseditionState Security Court

Washington Voices Dissatisfaction with Outcome of Lebanese Parliamentary Vote: It Could not Undermine Hezbollah Power

 May 19, 2022

Former US Undersecretary of State for Political Affairs David Hale reflected Washington’s dissatisfaction with the results of the Lebanese parliamentary elections which occurred on May 15, 2022.

“There was a lot of wishful thinking before Lebanon’s parliamentary elections on Sunday, May 15,” Hale wrote in an article.

One fantasy is that reducing Hezbollah’s parliamentary presence and alliances reduces its power. In reality, Hezbollah’s sway in elections and parliament is merely a useful by-product of its parallel power structure outside the state, based on arms, fighters, services, and illicit funds.

Hale added that there was also speculation the results would deal a blow to Hezbollah and its Christian allies, adding that they just suffered reverses in the vote.

According to Hale, the withdrawal of the former premier Saad Hariri from the Lebanese politics resulted in a low Sunni participation level.

“This proves Hariri still leads his constituency, and his absence opened up most of those few contests won by independents.”

On May 15, Lebanon witnessed a parliamentary election which synchronized with an unprecedented crisis caused by the US-backed siege and corruption. Despite the US scheme, the Resistance alliance managed to emerge victorious.

Source: Al-Manar English Website

UN rapporteur: Human Rights in Iran Severely Affected by US Sanctions

May 19, 2022

A top UN human rights official has slammed the United States for its brutal sanctions regime against the Islamic Republic of Iran, asserting that harsh economic sanctions have had a damaging impact on human rights in the country.

Alena Douhan, the United Nations Special Rapporteur on the Negative Impact of Unilateral Coercive Measures on the Enjoyment of Human Rights, who is on an official visit to Iran these days, convened a press conference in Tehran on Wednesday afternoon.

Speaking to reporters, Douhan noted that decades of sanctions have wholly affected Iranian people’s lives and have particularly hit the low-income section of the society.

While presenting her assessment of the unilateral coercive measures (UCM) against Iran, the UN official who works under a mandate from the United Nations Human Rights Council, called on Washington to abandon its hard-nosed policy of maximum pressure against Iran and other countries.

Douhan, who arrived in Tehran earlier this month, said she had met with many civil society members, representatives of financial centers, diplomatic community during her visit.

She said she will address her concerns about the legality of US sanctions in her final report, which will be released at a later date.

Douhan’s mission from May 7 to 18 is the first to Iran by a UN special rapporteur.

Before embarking on the trip, the UN official said she hoped to “gather first-hand information on the impact of unilateral coercive measures on the full realization of all human rights” in Iran.

“My visit will aim at covering all walks of life and sectors affected by such measures,” she noted, dismissing speculation in the Western media that she was heading to Iran with a specific agenda.

She told reporters on Wednesday that the US has since the 1970s imposed crippling economic and trade sanctions on Iran and significantly expanded them since the early 2000s.

In May 2018, the former US President Donald Trump, after unilaterally withdrawing his country from the 2015 nuclear deal, reinstated harsh economic sanctions on Iran and slapped new ones in an unprecedented move that was widely decried.

Under the 2015 agreement, officially known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), international sanctions on the Islamic Republic were eased in exchange for Tehran putting limitations on certain aspects of its nuclear activities.

Trump’s sanctions deprived the Islamic Republic of economic dividends under the accord as it barred countries and international firms from working with Iran.

The mercurial real estate tycoon-turned-president’s successor, Joe Biden, who was vice president when the JCPOA was inked in 2015, promised to return his country to the deal. But his administration has failed to honor the commitment, following Trump’s legacy.

According to the UN special rapporteur, the US continues to illegally ban trade and investment in Iran, forcing foreign companies to leave the country for the fear of sanctions.

Douhan’s landmark visit to Iran came amid the stalemate over the nuclear deal, with the US showing reluctance to respond to Iran’s proposals.

Decrying the US decision to abandon the nuclear deal and continue with its sanctions regime, she said the deal was endorsed by UN Security Council Resolution 2231.

“Applying extraterritorial sanctions on Iranian companies or companies working with Iran … is illegal under international law,” she asserted.

Commenting on Iran’s frozen assets abroad, the UN official said the assets estimated to be around $120 billion need to be unblocked.

“I urge the states that have frozen the assets of Iranian Central Bank to immediately unfreeze Iran’s funds based on international law.”

Douhan began her 11-day visit to Iran on May 7, a day before the fourth anniversary of the US illegal withdrawal from the JCPOA.

Last week, Iran’s top human rights official Kazem Gharibabadi said Douhan’s visit was only aimed at gathering information on the impact of sanctions to hold countries (US) to account.

“Nations hit by sanctions should use all available resources to hold the countries calling for and enforcing unilateral sanctions liable,” Gharibabadi said.

His comments came in response to reports in Western media accusing Iran of exploiting the visit to avoid accountability and “deflect attention” from its alleged human rights violations.

In her Wednesday press conference, Douhan also welcomed Iran’s efforts to support Afghan refugees, displaced by the 20-year US war, despite reeling under sanctions.

“I call on the sanctioning states, particularly the US, to abandon the unilateral sanctions,” she stated.

She also referred to stalled negotiations in Vienna to bring the US back to the JCPOA, urging the JCPOA signatories and the US to resume the negotiations.”

Iran and the P4+1 group of countries – Britain, France, Germany, China, and Russia – have held several rounds of sanctions in the Austrian capital since April 2021 to revive the JCPOA.

Iran says its primary goal at the talks is to have the illegal US sanctions removed.

Source: Iranian media (edited by Al-Manar English Website)

‘Israelis’ Obsessed with Hezbollah’s UAVs, Launch Missiles at Own Drone [Video]

  May 19, 2022

Israeli occupation military: A drone belonging to us was mistakenly identified as a hostile drone and intercepting missiles were launched as a result of this mistake

By Al-Ahed News

Once again the ‘Israelis’ themselves expose their obsession with the drones the Lebanese Hezbollah resistance movement possesses.

In yet another embarrassing incident, the Zionist occupation military activated its ‘Iron Dome’ and launched missiles towards a supposedly infiltrating aircraft that at the end of the day turned to be an ‘Israeli’ one.

According to ‘Israeli’ military spokesman, sirens were activated in several northern settlements on Thursday morning after a suspected drone infiltration coming from the Lebanese airspace. The Iron Dome launched several missiles towards the drone that was found later as belonging to the ‘Israeli’ occupation army, which was mistakenly identified as a hostile aircraft, the Zionist military explained.

Before figuring out that it was an ‘Israeli’ drone, the Zionist military was claiming that the aircraft was brought down; however, after admitting that the drone was an ‘Israeli’ one, the claim of downing it was refuted.

The Zionist military started telling conflicting stories, but remained consistent on the fact that the sirens were activated in the Upper Galilee as a result of a wrong identification of the aircraft.

Earlier, ‘Israeli’ Channel 12 alleged that the sirens were activated after launching missiles to intercept and bring down an unmanned aerial vehicle belonging to Hezbollah that infiltrated the northern occupied Palestinian airspace coming from South Lebanon.

It is worth noting that the confusion among the Zionist military members comes at the climax of security alertness amid the “Chariots of Fire” maneuvers, the ‘Israeli’ entity’s largest wargames in several years, which simulate a month-long all-out war against Hezbollah and Hamas on all fronts from the North to the South.

This is the second aircraft the ‘Israeli’ occupation army downs before figuring out that it belongs to it. Such incidents come as a result of the security obsession and loss the Zionists are through due to the major and numerous transformations unfolding in the region, namely Hezbollah’s growing might, and its Secretary General, His Eminence Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah’s threats about a direct and a rapid response to any attack the ‘Israeli’ army might commit during their military exercises.

Constantly on the Verge of Collapse: How Palestinians Became a Factor in Israeli Politics

May 18, 2022

Israeli politicians Naftali Bennett (L) and Ayelet Shaked. (Photo: via Wikimedia commons)

By Ramzy Baroud

Israel’s coalition government of right-wing Prime Minister Naftali Bennett is on the verge of collapse, which is unsurprising. Israeli politics, after all, is among the most fractious in the world, and this particular coalition was born out of the obsessive desire to dethrone Israel’s former leader, Benjamin Netanyahu.

While Netanyahu was successfully ousted in June 2021, Bennett’s coalition has been left to contend with the painful reality that its odd political components have very little in common.

On April 6, Israeli lawmaker Ildit Salman defected from the coalition, leaving Bennett and his temporary allies wrangling with the fact that their Knesset (Israel’s Parliament) coalition no longer has a majority. Now that the Knesset count stands at 60-60, a single defection could potentially send Israelis back to the voting booth, which has been quite habitual recently.

Two current Bennett allies, Abir Kara and Bir Orbach, are possible defectors. Even Bennett’s old Bayit Yehudi (Jewish Home) partner, Ayelet Shaked, could ultimately betray him, once his coalition ship begins sinking. And it is.

Both Bennett and Shaked left the Jewish Home in 2018 to form Yamina. Although the latter won only seven seats in the March 2021 elections, the far-right party proved to be the kingmaker, which allowed the anti-Netanyahu coalition to be formed. The only alternative to this current coalition would have been a government in which Netanyahu and Bennett would alternate the prime minister post. Though Bennett is a protegé of Netanyahu, the current prime minister knew too well that his former boss cannot be trusted.

So, instead, Bennett opted to join a hotchpotch coalition of political desperados, each joining an unlikely government for simply having no other option. For example, Yesh Atid (17 seats), and Kahol Lavan (8 seats), once part of the Blue and White center-right coalition, betrayed their political base by joining far-right Yamina and, consequently, leaving behind Telem of Moshe Yalon, which now has no Knesset representation.

The same can be said of Labor (7 seats) and Meretz (6 seats) who, earlier, were the backbone of the Israeli political establishment – in 1992 they had 56 seats combined. Losing faith in their own political base, they opted to join their supposed ideological nemesis, instead of enduring the painstaking process of breathing life into a dying camp.

The captivating part of the story is the United Arab List of Mansour Abbas, which is rightly perceived to have betrayed its Arab base in Israel and its own Palestinian people everywhere else. As the Israeli army is cracking down on Palestinian communities throughout historic Palestine, including Al-Aqsa Mosque and the Naqab – Mansour Abbas’ own base – this strange political creature remains committed to Bennett, though nervous about future possibilities, especially that the nature of the Israeli attacks on Palestinians are increasingly shifting towards a religious war.

Consequently, it is hard to imagine that Bennett’s government could realistically survive till 2025. In fact, it is quite rare in Israeli politics that any government coalition has served its full four-year term. Still, Israel’s historic political instability is worsening. In fact, Bennett’s government is the outcome of an agonizing political process that saw Israeli voters cast their votes in four different general elections in only two years.

Perhaps, what is keeping Bennett’s coalition together, though precariously, is the menacing image of Netanyahu, the current opposition leader, sinisterly watching from across the Knesset aisles while waiting for the right opportunity to pounce. Some Israeli analysts even argue that the defection of MK Salman was largely instigated by the abuse and intimidation she received from Netanyahu’s Likud party, which saw her as a traitor to their right-wing agenda.

Regardless of the fate of Bennett’s government, Israel’s political crisis will continue indefinitely, and there are reasons for this.

Though the Israeli right has dominated the country’s politics for many years, especially since 1996, it remains fractious and opportunistic. The constant need to feed the insatiable appetite of the country’s powerful right-wing constituency keeps pushing Israel’s right-wing parties further to the right. They are merely united around such values as the racial and religious supremacy of Israeli Jews, their hate for Palestinians and Arabs, the desire to expand the illegal Jewish settlements and the rejection of any mediated solution that would provide Palestinians with their basic human rights.

The left in Israel is, frankly, not a left at all. It is recognized as such, largely because of its ‘peace-process’ legacy, which died with the assassination of Labor Minister Yitzhak Rabi, in 1995. Tellingly, Rabin was not a peacenik but one of Israel’s most militant and violent leaders. However, the erroneous association, linking any Israeli leader with the ‘peace process’, automatically classified that individual as a ‘leftist’. According to Israeli analyst Oz Aruch, this also applied to Ariel Sharon. The name of the late notorious Israeli prime minister and Army General is associated with the Sabra and Shatila massacre, along with other horrific episodes.

Without a real ideology and without a ‘peace process’, or even the desire to engage in one, the Israeli left has become irrelevant.

The same applies to the center which, by definition, is the political camp that occupies the space between the right and the left. With the right being in constant redefinition and the left having no strong ideological base, the Israeli center has proven equally hopeless. The outcome of the April 2019 elections, when the center coalition Blue and White obtained 35 seats, should have been a watershed moment for Israel’s political center. This ultimately culminated to nil, and eventually led to the collapse of Blue and White itself.

While this is taking place in Israel, the Palestinian body politic has been slowly reanimating. Though Palestinian Arab parties in Israel remain divided, and Palestinian groups in the occupied territories are yet to find their common ground, Palestinian communities, especially the younger generations, have been articulating a new political discourse. With grassroots leaderships, they are coordinating their actions from occupied Jerusalem to Gaza, to the Naqab to the West Bank and to Palestinian communities in Israel itself.

For the first time in many years, Israel finds itself in a position where it is no longer the only party that is shaping events or determining outcomes in the country. Therefore, Israeli political instability will worsen. Contrastingly, Palestinians are finally becoming a factor in Israeli politics and, through their popular resistance, can mobilize to put pressure on Israel as has been the case in recent years.

Israel is now facing the dilemma of either ignoring this new Palestinian factor, at its own peril, or accepting the inescapable fact that Israel can never enjoy stability while Palestinians remain occupied, confined and oppressed.

– Ramzy Baroud is a journalist and the Editor of The Palestine Chronicle. He is the author of six books. His latest book, co-edited with Ilan Pappé, is “Our Vision for Liberation: Engaged Palestinian Leaders and Intellectuals Speak out”. Dr. Baroud is a Non-resident Senior Research Fellow at the Center for Islam and Global Affairs (CIGA). His website is www.ramzybaroud.net

US-sponsored ISIS Terrorists Assassinate Two Officials in Daraa Province

 ARABI SOURI

US-sponsored terrorists of an ISIS-affiliated group operating out of the Al Tanf area have assassinated the head of the town council and the head of the Baath Party in the town of Al Nuaymah in the eastern countryside of Daraa.

Ali Awad Abboud, acting head of the town council, and Fouad Abboud, the head of the Baath party constituency in the town arrived dead at the National Hospital of Daraa, a source in the hospital informed the Syrian news agency Sana in a statement.

The hospital source said in the statement that both victims were killed by gunshots to their chests confirming the information circulating by local sources in the town who said ‘unknown gunmen shot the two officials in the town’ and they immediately fell dead.

This assassination indicates it was carried out by terrorists highly trained by an agency with such experiences, like the CIA or one of the US military agencies that carry out similar crimes around the world.

We’ve reported on the 23rd of December 2021, less than 5 months ago, the assassination of the mayor of the town of Al Nuaymah Alaa Al Abboud, he was killed by a bomb planted under his car, and some other members of his family were injured in the terrorist attack.

We also mentioned in the report on the previous assassination how the remnants of ISIS terrorists and members of the ISIS-affiliated terrorist group Maghawir Thawra operate out of the 50 kilometers no-fly zone established by the Biden forces illegally deployed in the Al Tanf area in the furthest southeastern Syrian desert, these forces have carried out military drills with the terrorists who also hold hundreds of Syrian families in the infamous Rukban concentration camp as human shields.

Syrian people, state and army officials, politicians, scientists, and tribal notables have all been targeted by the US-sponsored ‘Moderate Rebels’ or call use the latest trend by NATO the ‘Foreign Legion’ – Syria Branch, the US under the Noble Peace Laureate Obama have created these terrorist groups after failing to take over Syria by the color revolution dubbed Arab Spring, later beefed up by Trump, and now came back the diverse, most inclusive regime of Biden to continue investing in these terrorist groups to punish the Syrian people for not accepting the modern-day slavery decided upon them by the owners of the USA.

Syria News is a collaborative effort by two authors only, we end up most of the months paying from our pockets to maintain the site’s presence online, if you like our work and want us to remain online you can help by chipping in a couple of Euros/ Dollars or any other currency so we can meet our site’s costs.

button-PayPal-donate

You can also donate with Cryptocurrencies through our donate page.
Thank you in advance.

Sayyed Nasrallah: Hezbollah, Allies Emerged Victorious… Supporters Provided Resistance with Safety Network

MAY 18TH, 2022

By Al-Ahed news

Hezbollah Secretary General His Eminence Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah delivered on Wednesday a speech tackling the Lebanese parliamentary elections and he latest political developments on the internal arena.

At the beginning of his speech, Sayyed Nasrallah thanked every person who voted during the Lebanese parliamentary electoral process. “We highly appreciate all those who performed this duty despite every hardship,” he said.

His Eminence further thanked all volunteers who contributed to Hezbollah’s electoral machine during the Lebanese Parliamentary Elections.

In addition, the Resistance Leader thanked those who voted for the Resistance by saying: “I thank you very much and I can’t say but that I’m speechless when it comes to thanking you.”

“The massive popular participation and the results of the elections convey a message of adhering to the resistance and its weapons,” he viewed.

Sayyed Nasrallah continued by thanking the resistance people for establishing a shield of protection for their resistance via elections’ results noting that “The voters provided the resistance with a safety network against the campaign of targeting that followed the daily financial and media campaigns.”

In parallel, His Eminence hailed the fact that “The Resistance men were performing two roles at once; the first was to contribute to the success of the electoral day and the second by staying ready to defend Lebanon [against any attack].”

Denouncing the fact that “The US and its Lebanese allies are responsible for the greatest theft that Lebanon has suffered all over the past 3 years,” he confirmed that “Neither intimidation nor threatening the people with their future yielded any result.”

“On the level of Resistance, the outcome is a major victory which we are proud of given the circumstances of the battle, the tools that have been used, and the money that was spent in it,” Sayyed Nasrallah mentioned, noting that “Hezbollah’s electoral achievement came after a major media and psychological attack on the resistance and its allies added to the economic pressures, sanctions and various crises.”

According to His Eminence, “The massive popular participation and the results of the elections convey a message of adhering to the resistance and its weapons. What happened is a great victory that we in Hezbollah are proud of, especially when we study the battle’s conditions and what was used and spent in it.”

On another level, he underlined that “What we witnessed concerning the elections and the honorable Sunni sect’s stance particularly the ‘Future Movement’s’ boycott is a very important issue that needs a calm, responsible and accurate approach.”

Regarding the new parliamentary map, Sayyed Nasrallah praised the fact that “The resistance and its allies achieved a strong and big presence in the new parliament,” noting that “It isn’t true that the parliamentary majority has shifted from one place to another.”

As His Eminence rejected the talk that a political camp in the country can claim to have won the parliamentary majority, Hezbollah Secretary General explained that “We’re in front of a parliament that is composed of different and diversified blocs that include independent representatives, all the alliances will affect its shape, but it is clear that nobody could claim to have the parliamentary majority.”

“The interest of the Lebanese people might be in what happened,” he emphasized, pointing out that “When no one has the majority, this means that everyone is responsible, and no one is allowed to relinquish the responsibility.”

Urging all political sides for pacifying the political rhetoric, Sayyed Nasrallah underscored that “We’re all concerned with pacifying the country and bickering will not lead to a result.”

Meanwhile, His Eminence called for calming the situation in Lebanon and tending to deal with the issues that concern the people through partnership and cooperation rather than rivalry.

“The extent of the financial, economic and life crises in the country can’t be solved by a single team even if it obtains the majority,” he stated, noting that “The state could have set up seven or eight mega centers to make voting easier for the people.”

Warning that “The entire world is moving into a crisis as fuel and wheat’s prices have risen and there are things that may be cut off in the market,” Sayyed Nasrallah advised Hezbollah rivals by saying: “If you think that we might feel tired or abandon defending the resistance, you’re delusional and your debates won’t reach a place.

Moreover, he urged all political sides to review their practical performance and alliances. “The recent experience carries many lessons in which everybody reviews their practical performance, alliances, and rhetoric. Crises couldn’t be dealt with but through partnership and cooperation.”

Sayyed Nasrallah also called for calming the situation in Lebanon and tending to deal with the issues that concern the people through partnership and cooperation rather than rivalry

Responding to certain political fabrications that accompanied elections, His Eminence reminded that “Among the lies that have been promoted is the one about how to hold elections amid the presence of the resistance’s weapons… isn’t it high time for this lie to come to an end?”

Another lie is about the ‘Iranian occupation’. On this level, he wondered: “We’ve witnessed the US embassy and the Saudi ambassador’s intervention who were the most active during the elections, did you witness the Iranian ambassador or any embassy employee intervening in the elections?”

To “Someone” [former PM Fouad Siniora] who formed lists all over Lebanon and was financed by the foreign embassies, who won two or three seats, claims that the people have expelled the resistance, Sayyed Nasrallah sent a sounding message: “How does this ‘someone’ dare to talk on behalf of the Lebanese people as he didn’t gain more than a few thousand votes

Elaborating that “Those who claim that a certain choice is the most popular in Lebanon have to return to the majority of votes to identify this,” he went on to say: “Under such an electoral system, the numbers of MPs do not truly reflect the popular will. One must look at the number of voters, not MPs.”

“The distribution of electoral districts happened in this unscientific manner as they are cut and pasted upon the interests of some political leaders. The numbers of votes for the Loyalty and Hope lists in some districts is way above 500,000… don’t those represent the popular will?” His Eminence said.

According to Hezbollah Secretary General, “Lebanon must be a single electoral district based on proportional and non-sectarian representation and youths from the age of 18 must have the right to vote, so that the number of MPs can reflect popular choices.”

Sayyed Nasrallah assured the people of resistance: “We won’t spare any effort, especially for those who sacrificed their blood and gave us their votes,” urging supporters not to stage motorbike rallies.

“More than once I repeated that shooting in the air is forbidden, and this is the fatwa of our scholars, because this terrifies people. Any Hezbollah member who shoots in the air will be expelled,” he stressed, noting that “We have told our supporters that the ‘Shia, Shia, Shia’ slogan is inappropriate. We want calm and stability and we don’t want provocations.”

In Numbers: Hezbollah Winners in the Lebanese Parliament

Designed By Al-Ahed News

In Numbers: Hezbollah Winners in the Lebanese Parliament

MORE ON THE TOPIC

The Middle Corridor Will Help China Hedge Against Uncertainty In Russia & Pakistan

17 MAY 2022

The Middle Corridor Will Help China Hedge Against Uncertainty In Russia & Pakistan

It’s unrealistic that China would ever abandon its investments in Russia or Pakistan, but those two’s connectivity roles for it vis-à-vis the EU and West Asia/Africa respectively can be complemented by Turkey and Iran via the Middle Corridor.

American political analyst

By Andrew Korybko

Up until the beginning of this year, China’s grand strategy was to rely on a network of connectivity corridors across its Belt & Road Initiative (BRI) to integrate Eurasia and thus advance its non-Western model of globalization, which Beijing believes to be more equal, just, and multipolar than the declining Western-centric one. This ambitious plan was abruptly disrupted by two black swan events that created sudden uncertainty about the viability of BRI’s Russian and Pakistani routes: Moscow’s ongoing special military operation in Ukraine and Islamabad’s scandalous change of government.

The first-mentioned prompted the US-led West to impose unprecedented sanctions that resulted in the forced decoupling of Russia and the EU while the second led to the global pivot state’s worst-ever political crisis since independence that’s also been exploited by BLA terrorists. Regarding Russia, it’s no longer a realistic transit route for overland trade between Eastern and Western Eurasia. As for Pakistan, there are suspicions that its new authorities’ speculative proUS pivot will occur at China’s expense. The BLA’s recent terrorist attack also led to all Confucius Institution teachers returning home for their safety.

China still considers Russia and Pakistan to be among its top strategic partners anywhere in the world, especially since both veritably play indispensable roles in Eurasia’s irreversible multipolar integration due to BRI’s Eurasian Land Bridge and China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) respectively. Nevertheless, their reliability in the present is less than it was at the start of the year, which is why China might understandably begin hedging against their uncertainties that could last for an indeterminate length of time by focusing more on the Middle Corridor.

This project refers to the connectivity route between Turkey and China via the South Caucasus, Caspian Sea, and Central Asia. In the current conditions, it represents the most viable trans-Eurasian corridor. There are undoubtedly some risks associated with it as evidenced by the sudden attempted terrorist takeover of Kazakhstan in January, which had previously been considered to be Central Asia’s most stable state. That said, compared to the connectivity risks connected to Russia and Pakistan nowadays, the Middle Corridor is much more reliable and safer in all respects.

The implications of the People’s Republic pressing through with this pragmatic back-up plan could be enormous since it would throw a spanner in Russia and Pakistan’s geo-economic strategies, even though it’s not Beijing’s fault that they’re no longer viable connectivity partners, but their own due to the decisions they made. That’s not to cast judgement on them, but just to point out that China would simply be responding to events beyond its control or influence in order to advance its interests that it considers to be to the greater benefit of mankind due to its envisioned community of common destiny.

Russia and Pakistan are obviously part of mankind just like everyone else is but China cannot keep a disproportionate amount of its BRI eggs in their basket, so to speak, which is why it’ll likely be compelled by circumstances to focus more on the Middle Corridor in the coming years. Despite occasional troubles in its ties with Turkey stemming from the sympathy that some in that West Asian country have for Uyghur separatists that China considers to be terrorists, relations are generally solid and actually stand to become much more strategic the longer that uncertainty prevails in Russia and Pakistan.

To explain, Europe hasn’t yet been pressured by its American overlord to curtail ties with China exactly like it recently curtailed those with Russia. For the time being, they’re still in a relationship of complex economic interdependence with the People’s Republic, yet the Eurasian Land Bridge through Russia is no longer a viable means for conducting their future overland trade. For that reason, the Middle Corridor anchored in Turkey is much more attractive since goods can transit through this route between the EU and China instead of remaining dependent on the Suez Canal.

President Erdogan could leverage his civilization-state’s unexpectedly disproportionate geo-economic role in Eurasian integration to reduce the US-led West’s pressure upon Turkey exactly as he could do the same in the event that he succeeds in clinching an EU-Israeli pipeline deal in the coming future. His isn’t the only Muslim Great Power that would benefit from the Middle Corridor though since neighboring Iran can prospectively do as well. It can connect to that BRI route via Turkmenistan or perhaps by pioneering its own “Persian Corridor” to China through Afghanistan and Tajikistan.

Whichever way it happens, there’s no doubt that there’s mutual interest between Iran and China to strengthen their connectivity with one another after last year’s 25-year strategic partnership pact. They could have possibly done so by expanding CPEC in the western direction (W-CPEC+) but the newfound political and security uncertainty in Pakistan has made that unviable for the foreseeable future, hence why China might simply go ahead with expanding the Middle Corridor to Iran and/or cooperating on the Persian Corridor proposal.

China’s ties with the Gulf Kingdoms are also very strong, especially since the People’s Republic plans to invest in their systemic reform programs for diversifying their economies from their hitherto disproportionate dependence on resource exports. While their relations with Iran remain complex, there’s been visible progress over the past year or so in taking baby steps towards a rapprochement, particularly in terms of Tehran’s ties with Abu Dhabi and Riyadh. In the event that this continues, Iran could serve as the transit state for facilitating real-sector Chinese-Gulf trade.

Iran also abuts the Indian Ocean just like neighboring Pakistan does, but unlike the latter, Iran isn’t mired in political and security uncertainty so it could complement – though importantly never replace – the envisioned role that Pakistan was supposed to play with respect to facilitating Chinese-African trade. Nobody should misunderstand what’s being written in this analysis: it’s unrealistic that China would ever abandon its investments in Russia or Pakistan, but those two’s connectivity roles for it vis-à-vis the EU and West Asia/Africa respectively can be complemented by Turkey and Iran via the Middle Corridor.

What all of this means is that the uncertainty in Russia and Pakistan, while detrimental for their own interests as well as their role in Eurasia’s multipolar integration, provides unexpected opportunities for China to diversify BRI by focusing more on the Central Asian-Caspian Sea-South Caucasus-Gulf direction through the comparatively much more reliable and safer Middle Corridor. Turkey and Iran are the two Great Powers that stand to benefit the most from this, not to mention the medium- and smaller-sized countries between them and China. All told, the comprehensive gains might outweigh the setbacks.

THE AZOVSTAL FORTRESS IS FALLING

 17.05.2022 

South Front

PAYPAL, WESTERN UNION etc: write to info@southfront.org , southfront@list.ru

On May 16, the main “fortress of the Ukrainian Resistance” fell. Ukrainian militants blockaded at the Azovstal plant in the city of Mariupol raised the white flag and asked for evacuation of the wounded. As a result of the Russian shelling, the members of the Ukrainian nationalist Azov regiment were recently cut off from a water source on the territory of the facility.

The commander of the Vostok Brigade of the DPR Alexander Khodakovsky revealed that first nine Ukrainian servicemen raised a white flag and left the territory of Azovstal. The brigade commander explained that they represented a larger group of militants who asked for surrender. The Russian side agreed to the negotiations.

 As a result of negotiations with representatives of Ukrainian servicemen, an agreement was reached on the evacuation of the gravely wounded Ukrainian militants.

Another ceasefire regime has been declared by the Russian military in the area. A humanitarian corridor has been secured for the evacuation of wounded Ukrainian servicemen to a medical facility in the city of Novoazovsk in the Donetsk People’s Republic in order to provide them with the necessary medical assistance.

At the same time, judging by the claims of the Ukrainian officials not only gravely wounded militants have been evacuated.

Deputy Minister of Defense of Ukraine Anna Malyar reported that 53 seriously wounded from Azovstal were taken to the hospital in Novoazovsk, another 221 people were sent to Olenivka. They are expected to be exchanged.

President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelensky confirmed that part of the Ukrainian military surrendered. At the same time, he assured that the work on rescuing the remaining military from Azovstal and their return to the territory controlled by Kiev continues.

On May 17, Russian state media reported that the interrogation of Ukrainian prisoners of war from Azovstal has begun in the village of Elenovka. Among the Ukrainian military who surrendered, 144 people are fighters of the National Guard.

So far, the Russian Ministry of Defence has not confirmed the exchange of the surrendered militants.

According to some unconfirmed reports, the surrender is part of a big prisoner exchange deal.

Kiev reportedly demands that all Ukrainian fighters from Azovstal should be exchanged for Russian prisoners of war.

In turn, the Kremlin reportedly refuses to exchange nazi members of the Azov regiment as they committed numerous war crimes. The exchange of other servicemen of the Armed Forces of Ukraine however can be negotiated.

In this regard, Kiev PR managers have launched new information campaign, in order to shift the emphasis from the Azov regiment to the soldiers of the Armed Forces of Ukraine, border guards, and police officers blockaded in the Azovstal plant.

Taking into account the Russian reports that the majority of the surrendered militants are not members of the nationalist battalion, this scenario is likely possible.

At the same time, suspicions rise. Some needed Ukrainian nazi fighters can be exchanged under the guise of the ordinary Ukrainian servicemen.

The evacuation showcased the weakness of the neo-Nazi Azov battalion and its lack of resilience, which damaged the prestige of the MSM-promoted formation. However, in practice the Kiev regime is set to wage another propaganda campaign. It is likely to claim that it has managed to convince the “cruel Russians” to evacuate the “brave defenders of the Motherland”. This would play into the hand of war propaganda of Kiev, MSM and NATO against Russia and help the Ukrainian leadership boost the morale of its remaining forces.

Russia’s concessions to the nazi fighters, together with earlier inconsistent actions of Moscow in diplomatic talks with Kiev, undermine the moral and psychological state of members of Russian-led forces involved in the military operation in Ukraine.

MORE ON THE TOPIC:

باسيل يُعلن «الانتصار»: نحن «الكتلة الأكبر»

 الثلاثاء 17 أيار 2022

(هيثم الموسوي)

الأخبار

أكد رئيس التيار الوطني الحر، جبران باسيل، اليوم، فوز تياره بالكتلة النيابية الأكبر في مجلس النواب، داعياً إلى الحوار وعدم احتساب التيار ضمن أي محور. كذلك، رفض باسيل الموافقة على أي حكومة مكوّنة من «تكنوقراط».

وأعلن باسيل، في مؤتمر صحافي عقب إعلان نتائج الانتخابات النيابية، انتصار التيار وحصوله على «الكتلة والتكتل الأكبر في المجلس النيابي»، معرباً عن الاستعداد لـ«العمل مع الجميع واستخلصنا الكثير من العبر من هذا الاستحقاق».

وطلب باسيل أن «لا يحسبنا أحد على أي محور في الداخل والخارج (…) كل من يقوم بحسابات أكثرية وأقلية يعمل معروف ما يحسبنا محل وما يدخلنا بحسابات حدا».

وقال باسيل إن «مع الانتصار الوهميّ الذي أعلنوه بالأمس ارتفع الدولار وطابخ السّم آكله والثلاثي بري ـــ جنبلاط ـــ القوات عملوا على لعبة الانتشار ودفعوا حقها ودفع الناس حقها، لأنّ الأصول أن ينتخب المغتربون نوّابهم».

وأشار باسيل إلى أن «هناك كتلة ظهرت لما يُسمى بالمجتمع المدني وحان الوقت لأن يظهر من الجادّون عبر العمل التشريعي والنيابي».

وعن خسارة التيار في جزين، علّق باسيل بأن «جرحنا في التيار هو جزين حيث حصل الخطأ بسبب أداء التيار وبسبب الحصار السياسي الذي واجهناه هناك».

أمّا بالنسبة للحكومة المقبلة، فاعتبر باسيل أن «خبرية التكنوقراط في الحكومة: باي باي، فهناك شرعية شعبية يجب الاعتراف بها بغض النظر أين سنكون».

فيديوات متعلقة

مقالات متعلقة

“Israel”, the United States and the internationally accepted genocide

17 May 2022

Source: Al Mayadeen English

Atilio A. Boron 

How long will Washington’s double discourse last?

“Israel”, the United States and the internationally accepted genocide

Israeli government troops assassinated Palestinian-American journalist Shireen Abu Akleh, 51, one of the leading figures of Al Jazeera TV network. Yet, Washington and the Western media and governments remain silent in complicity against this unspeakable crime, not only for the murder itself but also for the vicious attack on freedom of the press. Can you imagine how these governments and their dependent press would have reacted if this crime had been committed against a Venezuelan-American journalist in Venezuela? This news would have been the cover of all the newspapers in the West and the subject of all the radio and television programs, denouncing the brutality of the Maduro “regime”. But, since the crime was committed by the Israelis, what prevails is silence and concealment of the information. Again, the damn double standard of the empire!

Shireen Abu Akleh, was shot dead while covering an Israeli army incursion into the Jenin refugee camp in the occupied West Bank. A Palestinian colleague of the murdered journalist, Ali Samudi, was also attacked by Zionist bullets and was shot in the back, fortunately not causing fatal injuries. The “Israel” Defense Force confirmed that it carried out an operation Wednesday morning in the Jenin refugee camp, but denied that they have shot at journalists present at the scene. However, Israeli army sources assured that there was an exchange of fire on the ground and Defense Minister Benny Gantz himself told the foreign press at night that the army “was not sure how the journalist died. Maybe it was a Palestinian who shot her, the shot could also have come from our side, we are investigating,” Gantz said. Nevertheless, one of the photographers from the French news agency AFP said that Israeli forces were firing in the area and that he saw the body of the Al Jazeera reporter on the ground. In addition, he said that there were no armed Palestinians in the area.

Al Jazeera called on the international community to hold “Israel” responsible for the “intentional” death of the journalist. “In a flagrant murder that violates international laws and norms, the Israeli occupation forces cold-bloodedly murdered the Al Jazeera correspondent in the Palestinian territories,” the channel said. Qatari Foreign Minister Lolwah Al Khater said on Twitter that the correspondent was shot “in the face” and called the act “Israeli state terrorism.” For its part, the Palestinian National Authority (PNA), the autonomous Palestinian government based in the West Bank, described the journalist’s death as an “execution” and as part of the Israeli effort to hide the “truth” of its occupation of the West Bank. Unfortunately, it is very unlikely that these protests will find an echo in the Western press, completely controlled by US imperialism and its European lackeys.

Israeli Foreign Minister Yair Lapid assured that his country wanted to join an “investigation into the sad death of the journalist Shireen Abu Akleh” and stressed that “journalists must be protected in conflict zones”, for which “Tel Aviv” has “the responsibility to get to the truth.” The US ambassador to the UN, Linda Thomas-Greenfield, called for the facts to be investigated by “both parties” in a transparent manner. In a completely hollow speech the diplomatic stressed that the “absolute priority” of the United States is “the protection of American citizens and journalists”, something blatantly false. Beautiful words, devoid of any substance because the United States and Western countries have been endorsing the genocidal policies of the state of “Israel” since 1948, and there is nothing to suggest that this policy will be changed in the near future, especially in the context of the Ukrainian war.

For its part, Amnesty International (AI) pointed out that the “increase in unlawful killings” in recent times is one more example of the need to put an end to “Israeli apartheid against the Palestinians.” In an unusually harsh public statement, the organization denounced what could be “extrajudicial executions” against Palestinians. It also said that “the murder” of the journalist “is a bloody reminder of the deadly system in which “Israel” locks up Palestinians. “Israel” is killing Palestinians left and right with impunity. How many more must die before the international community acts to hold “Israel” accountable?” questioned AI’s deputy director for the Middle East and North Africa, Saleh Higazi. This statement is in line with a recent declaration by Noam Chomsky, who accused the Israeli government of practicing genocidal policies in Gaza, the largest open-air prison in the world according to his words. The sad culmination of this policy followed by the neo-Nazi government of “Israel” was the scandalous repression that occurred during the funeral of Abu Akleh, which offends the most basic canons of human rights. However, despite these brutal transgressions and “Israel”‘s escalation of repression in recent weeks -in which at least 31 people were killed- the American government continues to monolithically support the slaughterers of the Palestinian people.

How long will Washington’s double discourse last? How is it that Biden, who claims to be recognized as a champion of human rights, supports a regime like the Israeli one that, since its foundation, has systematically violated the human, social and economic rights of the Palestinians stealing their land, destroying their houses and condemning them to a trickle-down genocide?

The opinions mentioned in this article do not necessarily reflect the opinion of Al mayadeen, but rather express the opinion of its writer exclusively.

Fact-checked: Video documenting David Schenker’s statements on Lebanon هذا ما قاله ديفيد شينكر في ندوة معهد واشنطن

17 May 2022

Fact-checked: Video documenting David Schenker’s statements on Lebanon

Source: The Washington Institute

By Al Mayadeen English 

Al Mayadeen refutes the claims of David Schenker that the network misreported his remarks on Lebanon, most notably the US’ role in exacerbating the country’s economic crisis.

Former US Assistant Secretary of State for Near Eastern Affairs David Schenker

Former US Assistant Secretary of State for Near Eastern Affairs David Schenker spoke, on May 12, on the occasion of launching the latest book by Hanin Ghaddar, Friedmann Fellow in the Washington Institute’s Program on Arab Politics, who focuses on Shia politics throughout the Levant. Robert Satloff, a researcher at The Washington Institute, moderated the seminar.

The former US Assistant Secretary made serious statements, ahead of Lebanon’s parliamentary elections, about the US role played in the country by the administration of former US President Donald Trump in order to accelerate the country’s financial collapse, as well as the administration’s exploitation of the “October 17” movement to distort Hezbollah’s image and weaken it along with its allies.

Al Mayadeen had earlier published a news report about the symposium, but Schenker had reservations about the mechanism of its coverage through other media outlets, accusing the network of misrepresenting his own words. Following are video-supported excerpts from what he said during the meeting, which refutes his claims against Al Mayadeen.

Commenting on the US’ role in supporting the so-called March 14 alliance coalition, Schenker detailed how the US orchestrated a maximum pressure campaign against Hezbollah to target its revenues saying, “So, we [the US] had a sort of multi-faceted strategy – I don’t know if we spelled it out as such – but we undertook a number of activities. So first and foremost, is to deny the organization revenues: We had the maximum pressure campaign which limited funding from Tehran to the organization cutting back, you know, 800-700 million dollars a year provided directly from Iran…” 

Elsewhere in his remarks, Schenker boldly stated, “We also sanctioned Hezbollah financial institutions, like the Jammal Trust Bank, we are careful to do so, as we were waiting for Moody’s [Analytics] to come out with their credit ratings first that downgraded Lebanon, and the day after, we piled on and did Jamal Trust but we weren’t responsible for the downgrade, so we raised the cost as well for Hezbollah’s allies. We designated some of Hezbollah’s most corrupt allies including, as pointed out earlier, Gibran Bassil – the president’s son-in-law. The message, I think, in this regard, is clear.”

Video documenting David Schenker’s statements on Lebanon

On the course the US followed to undermine Hezbollah’s very presence, Schenker said, “We [the US] looked for political opportunities: We saw an opportunity to deal Hezbollah a symbolic defeat in the municipal elections. We know about what happened in 2016 with Beirut Madinati in municipal elections, and we wanted to build on this, understanding primarily that it’ll be symbolic. But, nonetheless, you know, affirming that this organization is not 10 feet tall.”

On the US’ attempt to infiltrate Hezbollah’s arena of popular support, he said, “We cultivated Shiite businessmen. So during my tenure as Assistant Secretary of NEA [Near East Affairs], I traveled to Lebanon twice or three times. On all occasions, I had public dinners with Shiite businessmen opposed to Hezbollah that were organized by my dear friend, Lokman Slim.”

He has also affirmed that “the idea was to promote economic opportunities in Shiite areas to help wean the community from its dependence on Hezbollah, and we worked hard at that and I think we made some initial progress, that for a number of reasons, including the port blast, could not be sustained.”

“We supported civil society – Shiite civil society – so I met with creative members of the Shiite civil society opposed to Hezbollah’s’ authoritarianism. I met with Shiite journalists, people who wrote for Janoubia, a great online site in the south that reports on Hezbollah’s corruption and repression,” Schenker claimed.

Fact-checked: Video documenting David Schenker’s statements on Lebanon

The US diplomat admitted that the US funded the Lebanese Armed Forces (LAF) by saying, “Now, the alternative to that is the default US policy of basically funding the Lebanese Armed Forces (LAF), underwriting the military in the hope that somehow this will mitigate towards stability in Lebanon. Now, while there’s some merit in funding the institution, it’s not a panacea and won’t be an agent of change in Lebanon.”

Projecting on one of the speaker’s ideas regarding Hezbollah’s status, Schenker said, “So the phenomenon that Hanin describes so well, I think, is an opportunity for, regardless of whether it’s Republicans or Democrats in Washington that the administration should look to exploit.”

“The LAF won’t prevent state collapse or another Hezbollah war with “Israel”. The focus of the LAF absent the approach to Hezbollah is a recipe for continuation of the status quo, or more likely a further deterioration and ultimately the destabilization of Lebanon,” he claimed.

Fact-checked: Video documenting David Schenker’s statements on Lebanon

Regarding the 2022 parliamentary elections in Lebanon, he said, “But, what I do know, is that the opposition is incredibly divided, brimming with narcissistic or individualistic leaders who are more interested in being the head of their individual parties than getting together and overthrowing a corrupt elite. And so they have something like 100 parties running – the normal parties and then all these other smaller parties. And my guess is they’re going to eat their own and we’re not going to see them gain a great deal of seats to shift the balance”.

He concluded by commenting on the US multifront war to shrink Hezbollah’s authority by saying, “That’s exactly my point, which is you have to work to push back on this group [Hezollah] on all fronts. And that part of that is going after them in Lebanon, supporting people who are willing to stand up to them, and then going after Iran economically or in other ways, putting pressure on them. They don’t get a free pass from creating all these militias, planting them that are destabilizing or destroying their countries.”

Several Lebanese parties have long warned against the role the US is playing in the Lebanese arena of politics and the fact that the said county is making every effort to incite strife and favor a party over another based on its whims and own narrow interests. Schenker’s words expose the US interference in Lebanese politics, not to mention the substantial role it played in exacerbating the economic crisis the Lebanese have been under since 2019. 

هذا ما قاله ديفيد شينكر في ندوة معهد واشنطن

المصدر: الميادين نت

الثلاثاء 17 أيار 2022

مساعد وزير الخارجية الأميركي لشؤون الشرق الأدنى السابق، ديفيد شينكر، يتحدّث عن الدور الأميركي في لبنان، وعن مشروع الاستثمار الأميركي في قوى “المجتمع المدني”.

المساعد السابق لوزير الخارجية الأميركي لشؤون الشرق الأدنى ديفيد شينكر

استضاف معهد واشنطن ندوة عبر تطبيق “زووم”، بتاريخ الـ12 من أيار/مايو الجاري، شاركت فيها حنين غدار، الباحثة اللبنانية في معهد واشنطن، وديفيد شينكر، المساعد السابق لوزير الخارجية الأميركي لشؤون الشرق الأدنى، وبشار حيدر، الأستاذ الجامعي في الجامعة الأميركية في بيروت. وأدار الندوة الباحث في معهد واشنطن روبرت ساتلوف، قائلاً إنّها تأتي قبل أيام من الانتخابات النيابية في لبنان، لكنها ستركز على قضية حزب الله داخل المجتمع الشيعي، بمناسبة إطلاق معهد واشنطن كتاباً جديداً لحنين غدار، بعنوان “أرض حزب الله: تشريح الضاحية والمجتمع الشيعي في لبنان”.ميناء

وصرّح شينكر بأنّ إدارة الرئيس باراك أوباما “اهتمت بدرجة أقل بلبنان”، على عكس إدارة الرئيس الأميركي السابق دونالد ترامب، التي أولت قدراً كبيراً من الاهتمام بالشأن اللبناني، بحيث “كان الانهيار المالي يترسّخ، وحدث انفجار ميناء بيروت، وكان برنامج لبنان للذخائر الموجَّهة بدقة (مع الجيش اللبناني) يحقق تقدماً كبيراً”.

شنكر:  إدارة ترامب أولت قدراً كبيراً من الاهتمام بالشأن اللبنانيشنكر: قمنا بتصنيف بعض حلفاء حزب الله بالأكثر فساداً

وفيما يخص العقوبات التي فرضتها الإدارة الأميركية على حزب الله، لفت شينكر إلى أنّ واشنطن “فرضت عقوبات على المؤسسات المالية التابعة لحزب الله، مثل جمال تراست بنك، فكنّا حريصين على القيام بذلك، بحيث كنا ننتظر إصدار مؤسسة موديز تصنيفاتها الائتمانية التي خفّضت تصنيف لبنان. وفي اليوم التالي، جمعنا الوثائق، وقمنا بوصم جمال بنك”. وقال ضاحكاً: “لكننا لم نكن مسؤولين عن خفض تصنيف لبنان”.

وتابع أنّ بلاده “رفعت التكلفة على حلفاء حزب الله”، قائلاً: “قمنا بتصنيف بعض حلفاء حزب الله الأكثر فساداً، بمن في ذلك صهر الرئيس اللبناني جبران باسيل. والرسالة في هذا الصدد واضحة. فالولايات المتحدة لا تقف فقط ضد الفساد الذي يتورط فيه حزب الله على نحو قريب، والذي يؤدي إلى تدمير الاقتصاد اللبناني، لكن هؤلاء الناس سيدفعون الثمن. لن يربحوا من هذا من دون الإضرار بسمعتهم، أو تلقيهم ضرراً مالياً”.

شنكر: واشنطن فرضت عقوبات على المؤسسات المالية التابعة لحزب اللهشنكر: حزب الله يؤمن بالرصاص وصناديق الاقتراع

وبشأن استغلال الفرص السياسية من أجل التصويب على حزب الله،  قال ديفيد شينكر: “بحثنا عن الفرص السياسية. رأينا فرصة في توجيه هزيمة رمزية لحزب الله في الانتخابات البلدية. نحن نعلم بما حدث في عام 2016، مع حملة “بيروت مدينتي” في الانتخابات البلدية، وأردنا البناء على ذلك، مع معرفتنا المسبّقة بأنها ستكون هزيمة رمزية”.

وأكد أن الإدراة الأميركية قامت بـ”زرع رجال أعمال شيعة”، مشيراً إلى أنّه سافر إلى لبنان مرتين، أو ثلاث مرات، خلال فترة عمله مساعداً لوزير الخارجية لشؤون الشرق الأدنى.

وقال مساعد وزير الخارجية الأميركي لشؤون الشرق الأدنى السابق إنّه كان له عشاء عام مع رجال الأعمال الشيعة المعارضين لحزب الله، نظّمه لقمان سليم، الذي وصفه بـ”صديقه العزيز”، موضحاً: “كانت الفكرة هي تعزيز الفرص الاقتصادية في المناطق الشيعية للمساعدة على وقف اعتماد هذا المجتمع على حزب الله، وعملنا بجد على ذلك. وأعتقد أننا أحرزنا بعض التقدم الأولي. لكن، نتيجة عدد من الأسباب، بما في ذلك انفجار الميناء، لم نتمكن من جعل هذا التقدم مستداماً”.

وأضاف ديفيد شينكر: “لقد دعمنا المجتمع المدني الشيعي. لذلك التقيت أعضاء مبدعين من المجتمع المدني الشيعي المعارضين لاستبداد حزب الله. التقيت صحافيين شيعة، ممن يكتبون لموقع “جنوبية”، وهو موقع إلكتروني رائع في الجنوب، يقدّم تقارير بشأن فساد حزب الله وقمعه. بإيجاز، أعتقد أننا اتخذنا مقاربة رفضت النظر إلى الطائفة الشيعية اللبنانية على أنها كتلة واحدة، وحاولنا إيجاد فرص من أجل الاستفادة من السخط الشيعي”.

شنكر: الإدراة الأميركية قامت بزرع رجال أعمال شيعةشنكر: من المهم أن ننظر إلى ما يحدث في لبنان

وبحسب المساعد السابق لوزير الخارجية الأميركي لشؤون الشرق الأدنى، فإنّه لا يعتقد أنّ الانتخابات ستغيّر الوضع بصورة كبيرة، “على الرغم من كل الاحتجاجات في عام 2019، والاستياء السائد في لبنان”، مضيفاً: “أولاً وقبل كل شيء، وكما نعلم جيداً مما حدث بعد انتخابات عامَي 2005 و2009، فإن حزب الله لا يحترم نتائج الانتخابات، فهو يؤمن بالرصاص وصناديق الاقتراع، على حدّ سواء”.

شنكر: لا أعتقد أنّ الانتخابات ستغيّر الوضع بصورة كبيرةشنكر: المعارضة منقسمة بصورة كبيرة لا تُصدق

وأكد شينكر أنّ هناك سبباً آخر في عدم وجود أي تأثير للانتخابات، معتقداً أنّ “من المهم أنّ ننظر إلى ما يحدث في المجتمع المسيحي، كما أشار بشار حيدر، الذي قال إنّ من المهم أن ننظر إلى ما يحدث في لبنان، بسبب جبران باسيل والتيار الوطني الحر، نتيجة النظر إليهما بصفتهما فاسدَين، بالتواطؤ مع حزب الله، وهل سيعانيان (أي باسيل وتياره انتخابياً)؟ من يدري إلى أين ستذهب هذه الأصوات؟”.

شنكر: من المهم أن ننظر إلى ما يحدث في لبنان وتحديداً في المجتمع المسيحيشنكر: الانتخابات لا تصلح النظام المنتهك في لبنان

وأضاف أنّ “ما أعرفه هو أنّ المعارضة منقسمة بصورة كبيرة لا تُصَدَّق، فهي مليئة بالقادة النرجسيين أو الفردانيين، والذين يهتمون بأنّ يكونوا رؤساء أحزابهم الخاصة، أكثر من اهتمامهم بالتوحّد معاً وإطاحة النخبة الفاسدة. فهم لديهم نحو 100 حزب تخوض الانتخابات، بدءاً بالأحزاب العادية، ثم كل هذه الأحزاب الصغيرة الأخرى. وأعتقد أنّهم سيأكلون بعضهم البعض، ولن نراهم يكسبون حصة كبيرة في المقاعد النيابية من أجل تغيير التوازن” السياسي في البلد.

شنكر: المعارضة منقسمة بصورة كبيرة لا تُصَدَّقشنكر: دعمنا المجتمع المدني الشيعي في لبنان

وعبّر شينكر عن عدم تفاؤله بـ”هذه الانتخابات. لا أعتقد أنه يجب على حكومة الولايات المتحدة أن تضع كثيراً من الثِّقل أو الصدقية تجاه ما يحدث فيها. هناك نظام منتهَك في لبنان، والانتخابات، في ظل قوانين انتخابية كهذه الموجودة، لن تُصلحه، للأسف”.

شنكر: هناك نظام منتهَك في لبنانشنكر: إدارة ترامب أولت اهتماماً كبيراً بالشأن اللبناني

وكانت الميادين نشرت خبراً بشأن هذه الندوة، تحفَّظ شنكر، عبر وسائل إعلام أخرى، عن آلية تغطيتها.

Gonzalo Lira: The Pentagon Says: Russia No—But China Yes

May 17, 2022

التطبيع الرسمي فلسطينياً وأردنياً: قراءة في مقدمات الاتفاقات “الإبراهيمية”

الثلاثاء 17 أيار 2022

المصدر

إبراهيم علوش 

التطبيع لا ينجح إن لم تضمن “إسرائيل” قطع شرايين الحياة عن الدول المطبِّعة، إن هي قررت تغيير رأيها.

تسلسل الاتفاقات والمعاهدات زمنياً مهمّ جداً، لأنه يدخلنا في الأبعاد الإقليمية للتطبيع مع العدو الصهيوني.

يتيح مرور عقود على توقيع المعاهدات والاتفاقات مع العدو الصهيوني سجلاً زمنياً طويلاً نسبياً لتقييم أثرها ومسارها وصيرورتها، بدءاً من اتفاقات كامب ديفيد التي وُقِّعت عام 1978، ومعاهدة السلام المصرية – الإسرائيلية التي وُقِّعت عام 1979، ودخلت حيز التنفيذ عام 1980، حتى معاهدة وادي عربة، أو معاهدة السلام الأردنية – الإسرائيلية، التي وُقِّعت عام 1994، والتي سبقها “إعلان واشنطن” بثلاثة أشهر بالضبط، والذي نص على إنهاء حالة العداء والبدء بمفاوضات لتوقيع معاهدة بين الأردن والكيان الصهيوني.

سبقت معاهدة وادي عربة عام 1994 اتفاقية أوسلو التي وُقعت عام 1993، وتأسست بناءً عليها قانونياً “السلطة الفلسطينية” عام 1994. وتبعت اتفاق أوسلو اتفاقات متعدّدة، مثل اتفاق أوسلو – 2 (يسمى أيضاً اتفاق طابا) عام 1995، والذي قسم الضفة الغربية إلى المناطق “أ”، و”ب”، و”ج”.  

وكان اتفاق أوسلو – 2 جاء تتويجاً لاتفاق “غزة – أريحا” عام 1994، الذي قضى بانسحاب “إسرائيلي” جزئي من أريحا وغزة لتأسيس السلطة الفلسطينية، وما يسمى برتوكول باريس عام 1994 أيضاً، والذي “نظم” علاقة السلطة الفلسطينية اقتصادياً بالكيان الصهيوني، وكلاهما (اتفاق غزة – أريحا، وبرتوكول باريس) أصبح جزءاً من اتفاق أوسع، هو أوسلو – 2.  

ثم جاء اتفاق الخليل عام 1997 الذي أعطى الاحتلال الصهيوني 20% من مدينة الخليل H2. ثم جاء اتفاق “واي ريفر” عام 1998 الذي كرس مؤسسة التنسيق الأمني رسمياً مع “إسرائيل” والولايات الولايات المتحدة الأميركية، كما كرس دور “السلطة الفلسطينية” في محاربة “الإرهاب” ضد العدو الصهيوني.  ثم جاء “اتفاق واي ريفر الثاني” عام 1999 ، والذي فسر بعض نقاط اتفاق “واي ريفر” الأول، ويسمى أيضاً اتفاق شرم الشيخ، وكان الاتفاق الأول مع نتنياهو والثاني مع إيهود باراك، وبعده جاء اتفاق تنظيم المعابر (معابر السلطة الفلسطينية) عام 2005.

يُضاف إلى تلك الحزمة من الاتفاقات المتناسلة البيانات المشتركة (كما في أنابوليس عام 2007)، وسلسلة اللقاءات التفاوضية مثل كامب ديفيد عام 2000، و”خريطة السلام” عام 2002، و36 جلسة تفاوضية بين محمود عباس وإيهود أولمرت بين عامي 2007 و2009، والمفاوضات المباشرة عام 2010 تحت وعد من إدارة أوباما بإيجاد “دويلة فلسطينية” خلال عام واحد، ثم محادثات تسيبي ليفني وصائب عريقات في الفترة 2013-2014… إلخ. 

ولا يشمل ما سبق عشرات المبادرات الموازية لـ”السلام”، مثل اتفاقية جنيف غير الرسمية بين ياسر عبد ربه ويوسي بيلين عام 2003 لتأسيس “سلام دائم”، وخطة الحاخام بنيامين إيلون للسلام، والتي جرى طرحها وترويجها بين عامي 2002 و2008، والتي تقوم على تجنيس الفلسطينيين في الضفة الغربية بالجنسية الأردنية، والسماح لهم بالبقاء ضيوفاً في الضفة الغربية بعد ضمها إلى “إسرائيل”، وخطة “إسرائيل الثنائية القومية” التي طرحها إدوارد سعيد ابتداءً، وتبناها عزمي بشارة وروّجها بقوة… إلخ.

كل ما سبق مهمّ لأن كثرة العناوين والمبادرات والجلسات التفاوضية وامتدادها عبر عقود، هو أمر مثير للاهتمام بمقدار ما هو مثير للملل، لأنه يقول كثيراً عن انعدام جدوى تلك الاتفاقات والمفاوضات، ولاسيما في ضوء ما تمخضت عنه على الأرض من تزايدٍ للاستيطان وتغولٍ لمشروع التهويد وتطرفٍ متصاعدٍ في المشهد السياسي الإسرائيلي وضلالة الحالمين بـ”حل سياسي للصراع”.

معاهدة كامب ديفيد: الخطيئة الأصلية في السياسة العربية

كذلك، فإن تسلسل الاتفاقات والمعاهدات زمنياً مهمّ جداً، لأنه يدخلنا في الأبعاد الإقليمية للتطبيع مع العدو الصهيوني. فمعاهدة السلام المصرية – الإسرائيلية عام 1979 أخرجت مصر من حلبة الصراع العربي – الصهيوني، ولاسيما أن المادة السادسة من تلك المعاهدة تنص حرفياً على أن الأحكام الواردة فيها تُعَدّ ملزمة ونافذة في حال تعارضها مع أي التزامات أخرى (مثل معاهدة الدفاع العربي المشترك لعام 1950 مثلاً؟!)، وهو ما ساهم في تحجيم دور مصر الإقليمي فعلياً باعتبارها الشقيق العربي الكبير، وأكبر الدول العربية المحيطة بفلسطين، وهو ما يعني موضوعياً فتح الباب للتمدد الإسرائيلي إقليمياً، وكان من عواقب ذلك غزو لبنان واحتلاله عام 1982.

بعد معاهدة السلام مع مصر وقرار الجامعة العربية مقاطعتها ونقل مقر الجامعة العربية من مصر إلى تونس، راح النظام الرسمي العربي يدخل أكثر فأكثر في صيرورة اختلال التوازن والتفسخ والصراعات الداخلية، وكان ذلك كله نتيجة طبيعية لتحييد مصر سياسياً من جانب العدو الصهيوني، وتوهمها أنها يمكن أن تقتنص السلام والازدهار في مصر بمفردها إذا نأت بنفسها عما يجري في محيطها.

العبرة هنا أن تقسيم الوطن العربي إلى دولٍ وسياساتٍ قُطريةٍ متنابذة ليس تاريخاً قديماً أو مشكلة عقائدية يتداولها القوميون العرب فحسب، بل تحمل تجزئة الوطن العربي دلالاتٍ جغرافيةً – سياسيةً عميقةً وراهنةً. وبالتالي، فإن إزالة عمود مركزي، مثل مصر، من معادلة الصراع، كان يفترض بها أن تؤدي إلى انهيار الأقطار الأخرى كأحجار الدومينو، لولا المقاومة والرفض في الشارعين العربي والفلسطيني من جهة، وحالة الصمود والتصدي التي نشأت على الصعيد الرسمي العربي في مواجهة مشروع كامب ديفيد من جهة أخرى. وثبت، بعد عقودٍ من التجربة، أن هذا ليس خطاباً ديماغوجياً أو “لغة خشبية”، كما يهذر البعض، بل إنه يشكل قيمة جغرافية – سياسية ملموسة كحائط صد أعاق الانجراف والانهيار في الوضع العربي على مدى عقود، وإن كان العدو انتقل سياسياً إلى حالة الهجوم. 

بعد التجربة المصرية في السلام مع العدو الصهيوني، برزت عقدة “السلام الشامل” في مقابل “السلام المنفرد”، والتي أعاقت المشروع الأميركي للإسراع قدماً في فرض مسلسل المعاهدات والتطبيع على الصعيد الرسمي العربي، على الرغم من سعي المحور الخليجي لفرض مبادرة الأمير فهد في القمة العربية في فاس في تشرين الثاني/نوفمبر 1981، والتي رفضتها سوريا آنذاك وأفشلتها (عن وجه حق، وإدراك ووعي تامّين لما تعنيه من تجريفٍ للوضع العربي وإلحاقٍ له بصيرورة كامب ديفيد من خلال الاعتراف الرسمي العربي جماعياً بحق الكيان الصهيوني في الوجود، على أساس مبدئي على الأقل). 

بعد العدوان الصهيوني على لبنان عام 1982 وعقابيله، انعقدت قمة عربية استثنائية في فاس مجدداً في أيلول/سبتمبر 1982، أُقرت فيها مبادرة الأمير فهد رسمياً، والتي أصبحت تعرف بعدها بمقررات قمة فاس 1982، وهي تعادل، بالنسبة إلى الجامعة العربية، برنامج “النقاط العشر” بالنسبة إلى منظمة التحرير الفلسطينية، كما سيأتي.

المدخل الفلسطيني لتعميم مشروع كامب ديفيد عربياً

كانت العقدة المركزية في الإصرار على “السلام المنفرد” هي القضية الفلسطينية والمسؤولية العربية إزاءها، مع أن القصة ليست قصة مسؤولية إزاء القضية الفلسطينية، بمقدار ما هي قصة مسؤولية إزاء الذات في مواجهة خطر المشروع الصهيوني على المنطقة برمتها. ولنا عودة إلى تلك النقطة، لكن كان لا بد من “فرط” العقدة المركزية، المتمثّلة بالموقف الرسمي الفلسطيني؛ أي موقف منظمة التحرير الفلسطينية، من أجل تعميم مشروع كامب ديفيد على كل الأقطار العربية، وصولاً إلى الاتفاقيات المسماة “إبراهيمية”.

كان يوجد داخل منظمة التحرير الفلسطينية، منذ بداية السبعينيات (وبعض الكتّاب والمعاصرين لتلك المرحلة يقول إنه وُجد منذ نهاية الستينيات) تيارٌ يرى ضرورة التفاهم مع “إسرائيل” والإدارة الأميركية لتأسيس “دولة فلسطينية” وفق حدود عام 1967.  أبرز رموز ذلك التيار، في ذلك الوقت، كان ياسر عرفات ومَن حوله في قيادة المنظمة والجبهة الديمقراطية لتحرير فلسطين.  

جاء الانقلاب الرسمي في موقف منظمة التحرير الفلسطينية في المجلس الوطني الفلسطيني في القاهرة عام 1974، والذي أقر ما يسمى “برنامج النقاط العشر”، والذي مثّل نقطة التحول الجوهرية في برنامج التحرير إلى برنامج تأسيس “سلطة وطنية فلسطينية على أي جزء يتم تحريره من فلسطين”. ومنذ ذلك الوقت، بدأ الانجراف الرسمي الفلسطيني في اتجاه تأسيس الدويلة مع التخلي بالتدريج عن الشروط والضوابط التي وُضعت لها، فالمهم هو تثبيت “المبدأ”، وبعد ذلك تتم زحزحة الشروط والضوابط باللتدريج بفعل عوامل النحت والتعرية السياسيَّين، وكانت تلك هي الرحلة التسووية التي قادت قيادة منظمة التحرير الفلسطينية إلى أوسلو وما تلاها.

جرت المصادقة فوراً على هذا التوجه التسووي في مقررات القمة العربية المنعقدة في الرباط عام 1974: “إن قادة الدول العربية يؤكدون حق الشعب الفسطيني في إقامة سلطة وطنية مستقلة بقيادة منظمة التحرير الفلسطينية، بصفتها الممثل الشرعي الوحيد للشعب الفلسطيني، على كل أرض يتم تحريرها”، والعبرة تكمن في تمرير خطاب “سلطة وطنية فلسطينية على كل أرض…”.

للتاريخ، لم يصوّت إلّا ثلاثة أعضاء في المجلس الوطني الفلسطيني عام 1974 ضد برنامج النقاط العشر، أحدهم ناجي علوش (أبو إبراهيم)، والثاني محمد داوود عودة (أبو داوود)، والثالث سعيد حمامي (الذي عدّه متشدداً أكثر من اللزوم لأنه ربطه آنذاك بشروط صعبة!). 

شكلت مفاوضات جنيف بعد حرب أكتوبر عام 1973، واعتقاد قيادة منظمة التحرير أنها “على وشك” أن تتمخض عن “دويلة فلسطينية” بموافقة أميركية – إسرائيلية، خلفيةَ الانجراف الرسمي الفلسطيني نحو وَهْم المشروع التسووي.   

لكنّ صيرورة مشروع كامب ديفيد هي الصلح المنفرد، وبالتالي نشأت مشكلة “الصلح المنفرد” في مقابل “السلام الشامل”، فكان لا بد من تذليل تلك العقبة عبر إقامة صلح منفرد مع منظمة التحرير ذاتها من أجل نزع الذريعة من أيدي رافضي “الصلح المنفرد”.

كان ذلك يتطلب “إعادة تأهيل” منظمة التحرير الفلسطينية ذاتها على نحو يتوافق مع متطلبات الطرف الأميركي – الصهيوني. وأدت حرب لبنان عام 1982، فيما أدت إليه، إلى إخراج منظمة التحرير الفلسطينية من لبنان. وفي الأعوام التي تلت، أشرفت قيادة منظمة التحرير الفلسطينية على ورشة كبرى لإعادة صياغة العقل السياسي الفلسطيني في اتجاه قبول دولة ضمن حدود عام 1967، وصولاً إلى “إعلان استقلال” وهمي في المجلس الوطني الفلسطيني في الجزائر عام 1988، تم الاحتفاء به كثيراً، كان من صاغه الشاعر محمود درويش، ووافقت عليه كل التنظيمات المنضوية في منظمة التحرير وقتها.

جاء الوصول إلى اتفاقية أوسلو بعدها عام 1993 تحصيلاً حاصلاً لتراكمات النهج التسووي، لأن البحث عن دويلة وعن “السلام” و”الازدهار” بالتفاهم مع “إسرائيل” والإدارة الأميركية، بعيداً عن “الشعارات الفارغة”، وعن العرب “الذين تخلوا عنا”، كما شاع في الخطاب السياسي الفلسطيني آنذاك، هو المعنى الحقيقي لشعار “يا وحدنا” الذي رفعه ياسر عرفات، كما أنه لا يزال المآل الحقيقي لكل من يرفع شعار “يا وحدنا” في أي قُطر عربي: التفاهم مع “إسرائيل”.. فالحس القُطري ليس مشروعاً نهضوياً للقطر، بل هو مشروع تسييد الكيان الصهيوني على المنطقة، وبالتالي تدمير القطر ذاته وتفكيكه.

لكنّ تيار البحث عن “الذات القُطرية” في الحالة الفلسطينية بالذات، وتحقيقها في “دويلة”، بعد التخلي عن مشروع التحرير، بالتفاهم مع الطرف الأميركي -الصهيوني، هو مكسب كبير لمشروع كامب ديفيد (الصلح المنفرد)، لأنه يجرح صدقية من رفضوه باسم “السلام العادل والشامل”. وما دام أصحاب القضية الرسميين ساروا في ركبه، فإنه لا تبقى لغيرهم ذريعة، باستثناء موقف أصحاب العلاقة وأولياء الدم: الشعب العربي، من مسألة التطبيع. ولا تزال هذه هي أهم جبهة في مقاومة التطبيع اليوم.  

صيرورة التطبيع على الصعيد الرسمي الأردني

بعد توقيع اتفاقية أوسلو، بات استكمال كسر حلقة دول الطوق مرهوناً بموقف سوريا ولبنان، لأن العلاقات التطبيعية بين النظام الأردني والعدو الصهيوني أقدم من أوسلو، بل أقدم من كامب ديفيد ومن أي مفاوضات بعد حرب أكتوبر 1973. وبحسب مقالة في صحيفة “واشنطن بوست” الأميركية للصحافيين الإسرائيليين، يوسي ميلمان ودان رفيف، في الـ27 من أيلول/ سبتمبر 1987، فإن الملك حسين بن طلال أرسل رسالة عام 1963 إلى رئيس الوزراء الإسرائيلي آنذاك، ليفي أشكول، فأرسل أشكول مدير مكتبه الخاص من أجل لقاء الملك في لندن في منزل طبيب الملك حسين الشخصي، اليهودي إيمانويل هربرت، في شهر أيلول/سبتمبر 1963. 

في عام 2014 نشر الكاتب الإسرائيلي يوسي ميلمان بعض المعلومات، وردت في صحيفة “معاريف” الإسرائيلية، تتعلق بعلاقة الملك حسين التاريخية بالساسة الإسرائيليين وجهاز الموساد. وورد ضمن المعلومات أن “إسرائيل” أنقذت حياة الملك حسين عدة مرات، إحداها – يقول ميلمان إنه كان شاهداً عليها – كانت بداية “لمواجهة سوريا حين استجابت “إسرائيل” لمساعدته بتركيز قوات من الجيش مكّنته من مهاجمة سوريا التي كانت تنوي مساعدة الفلسطينيين في أيلول/ سبتمبر 1970″.

وتحدث الكاتب عن “مئتي ساعة من المكالمات أو المحادثات للملك مع الزعماء الإسرائيليين، وأن رؤساء الموساد أحبّوا لقاء الملك، وهو ما تم في مقر الموساد في إسرائيل، وفي قصر الملك في عمّان، وفي القارب الملكي في ميناء العقبة، وفي منازل خاصة في لندن وباريس”.

وبحسب الكاتب، فإن “اللقاء الأول تم عام 1963 بين الملك حسين ويعقوب هرتسوغ، الذي كان آنذاك نائب مدير مكتب رئيس الحكومة، في منزل طبيب في لندن، بهدف تنسيق المواقف وفحص إمكان وجود تعاون سري”.

وفي هذا اللقاء – يزعم الكاتب – “جدد الملك حسين، بتأخير 16 عاماً، العلاقة التي كانت بين جده الملك عبد الله الأول بالصهيونية، بحيث أقام عبد الله الأول هذه العلاقات في الثلاثينيات من القرن العشرين”.

وليس الأمر في حاجة إلى كثير من التمحيص، إذ إن قصة العلاقات القديمة بين العدو الصهيوني والملك حسين وردت بالتفصيل في كتاب “أسد الأردن: حياة الملك حسين في الحرب والسلام”، بالإنكليزية، للكاتب الإسرائيلي آفي شلايم عام 2009.  واسم الكتاب بالإنكليزية هو Lion of Jordan: The Life of King Hussein in War and Peace.

باختصار، لا تحتاج قصة الوصول إلى معاهدة وادي عربة إلى تحليل سياسي أو تاريخي مفصّل، مثل الحالتين المصرية والفلسطينية، اللتين مرّ كلٌّ منها في نقطة انقلابٍ ما، من الناصرية إلى الساداتية في حالة مصر، ومن ثقب إبرة “برنامج النقاط العشر” في الحالة الفلسطينية، وإنما هي حالة إخراجِ السر إلى العلن بعد أن أتاحت اتفاقية أوسلو ذاتها ذلك، وكان الأمر “مطبوخاً” أصلاً على الصعيد الرسمي الأردني.  

العِبْرة هي أن اتفاقية أوسلو ذاتها أتاحت الصلح المنفرد للنظام الأردني، بكسرها محظور “السلام الشامل” الرسمي العربي، على نحو يجعل التطبيع “الإبراهيمي” اليوم تحصيلاً حاصلاً، لولا أن معاهدات دول الطوق لم تكتمل بتوقيع مثيلاتها من جانب سوريا ولبنان. وكان يُفترض، على ما يبدو، أن تكتمل في دول الطوق أولاً، وهذا أحد أهم أسباب الحرب المستمرة على سوريا، وعلى المقاومة في لبنان، وتورط الطرف الأميركي – الصهيوني المباشر فيها.

التطبيع يمأسس لإلحاق الأردن بالفضاء الصهيوني

لكن فيما يتعلق بعواقب وادي عربة، لا بمقدماتها الواضحة، يجب أن نذكر أنها كرست قانونياً صيغتين أساسيتين للعلاقة الأردنية – الإسرائيلية:

–       أولاً: السعي لتحقيق تكامل إقليمي، تبلور في خمس عشرة مادة من أصل ثلاثين تتألف منها المعاهدة، غطت كل أوجه الحياة بين الطرفين، مدنياً واقتصادياً.

–       ثانياً: السعي لتحقيق تنسيق رفيع المستوى، أمنياً وسياسياً، أصبح الأردن الرسمي عبره ملزماً بالتعاون ضد أي شكل من أشكال العداء لـ”إسرائيل”، حتى لو كان ذلك على مستوى التحريض اللفظي فحسب، كما جاء مثلاً في المادة الحادية عشرة من تلك المعاهدة.

–       ونضيف أن المادتين الخامسة والعشرين والسادسة والعشرين، من معاهدة وادي عربة، نصّتا على أنها تسمو على كل ما عداها تماماً كما في معاهدة السلام المصرية – الإسرائيلية.

غير أن ذلك كله لم يُعفِ النظام الأردني من دفع ثمن كبير، بعد أن بات من الواضح أن مشروع ضم الضفة الغربية، في ظل “صفقة القرن”، يعني تصدير “المشكلة الفلسطينية” سياسياً إلى الأردن، وحلها على حساب ذاته القُطرية. وبذلك، فإن الاتفاقيات “الإبراهيمية”، كابنة شرعية للاتفاقيات ما قبل “الإبراهيمية”، انقلبت على أمها، وهذا طبيعي، لأن التفاهم مع العدو الصهيوني يعني تفاقم الصراعات العربية الداخلية. لقد دخلت السلطة في فلسطين والأردن في ترتيبات مع العدو تؤدي إلى تجاوزهما، ولولا أن البلاد تدفع ثمن التطبيع، لقلنا: على نفسها جنت براقش!

اتخذ التطبيع في الأردن، بحكم كونه دولة طرفية، وامتلاكه أطول حدودٍ مع العدو الصهيوني، وثقل التأثير الغربي فيه، وفقدان نظامه تراثاً استقلالياً وطنياً (في مقابل تراث وطني استقلالي عريق لشعبه)، صيغةً أكثر طغياناً مما اتخذه في مصر كدولة مركزية، تفصلها صحراء سيناء عن “دولة” العدو، وتملك إرثاً ناصرياً، وتملك قبله إرث دولة مركزية عريقة، على الرغم من استخزاء الأنظمة التي حكمت مصر بعد جمال عبد الناصر للطرف الأميركي – الصهيوني.

فُرِض التطبيع في الأردن بالقوة في كثيرٍ من الحالات، كما قُمِعت الاحتجاجات ضده في كثيرٍ من الحالات الأخرى، مثل اعتصام “جك” السلمي ضد السفارة الصهيونية في عمان، وهو أطول اعتصام في تاريخ الأردن، واستمر أسبوعياً منذ نهاية أيار/مايو 2010 حتى بداية عام 2016، وتم سحقه بالقوة في النهاية. 

وتكريساً لفكرة التكامل الإقليمي، جرى في عز الحرب على سوريا تحويل مرفأ حيفا إلى بوابة تصدير واستيراد، عبر الأردن، إلى الدول العربية. وكتبت صحيفة “جيروزاليم بوست”، في تقرير لها في الـ21 من شباط/ فبراير 2016، تحت عنوان “ارتفاع ضخم في المنتوجات الأوروبية المارة عبر إسرائيل إلى الدول العربية”، أن المنتوجات التركية والبلغارية بصورة خاصة تأتي على متن عبّارات تحمل شاحنات أو في حاويات إلى ميناء حيفا، ليتم شحنها براً إمّا إلى الأردن، وإمّا عبر الأردن إلى العراق والدول الخليجية، وأن عدد الشاحنات التي نقلت منتوجات تركية وبلغارية عبر الكيان بلغ نحو 13 ألفاً في عام 2015، دفع كلٌّ منها رسوماً إل العدو الصهيوني عند دخوله فلسطين العربية المحتلة وخروجه منها، وأن عدد تلك الشاحنات ارتفع بمقدار 25% عن عام 2014، إذ بلغت آنذاك 10.300 شاحنة. وهو ما يشكل، في رأينا المكتوب والمنشور، أهم عائق في فتح الحدود البرية على مصاريعها مع سوريا من جانب قوى الشد العكسي المستفيدة من مرفأ حيفا، في الأردن وخارجه.    

وفي شهر تشرين أول/أكتوبر 2016، أعلن الكيان الصهيوني تدشين خط سكة حديد بيسان – حيفا بتكلفة مليار دولار، الذي كان جزءاً من سكة حديد الحجاز قبل ذلك بقرنٍ ونيف. وقال بوعز تسفرير، المدير العام لشركة قطارات “إسرائيل”، بمناسبة التدشين وقتها، “إن خط قطار حيفا – بيسان سوف يربط ميناء حيفا بجسر (الشيخ حسين)، الواقع في منطقة الأغوار الشمالية، ثم سوف يواصل مسيره إلى الأردن، حيث مدينة إربد وصولاً إلى العاصمة عمَّان. وهو سيكون أيضاً قطاراً لشحن البضائع، وسوف يخدم سكان منطقة وادي الأردن، ويعزّز حركة التجارة لميناء حيفا، كما سيتم تعزيز عمل خط القطار الجديد خلال الأعوام المقبلة”. 

قبل التطبيع “الإبراهيمي” المعلن بأعوام، في 3/2/2017 تحديداً، نشرت وسائل الإعلام تصريحات لوزير المواصلات الصهيوني، يسرائيل كاتس، آنذاك، يقول فيها إنه يدفع في اتجاه تعزيز تبادل المعلومات بين الكيان الصهيوني والدول الخليجية، بسبب ما لذلك من تأثير إيجابي “في خطة التواصل البريّ المزمع إنشاؤها من إسرائيل مع دول الخليج”. كما أشار إلى أنّه، بصفته أيضاً وزيراً للمواصلات، يعمل على الدفع قُدُماً في هذا الاتجاه، وهناك “موافقة من رئيس الحكومة الإسرائيليّة بنيامين نتنياهو، على توسعة خط القطار بين إسرائيل والأردن، ليصل إلى المملكة العربيّة السعوديّة”، مُعتبراً أنّ “الأردن سيكون حلقة الوصل بين إسرائيل ودول الخليج في قضية السكك الحديديّة التي تربط بينهما”.  

وكان رشح، في صيف عام 2015، أن “الإدارة المدنية” للضفة الغربية، والتابعة للجيش الصهيوني، قرّرت المصادقة على مخطط لمدّ شبكة سكك حديدية في جميع أنحاء الضفة الغربية، وأن المخطط يشمل 473 كيلومتراً من السكك الحديدية، و30 محطة قطار في 11 خط سكة حديدية، “يتجاهل الحدود السياسية القائمة”، بحيث ستربط السكك الحديدية بين المدن الفلسطينية، كما ستربط هذه المدن بالمدن في “إسرائيل”، وبالأردن و”سوريا أيضاً”، “وستخدم جميع سكان المنطقة”. وبسبب الطبيعة الجبلية للضفة، فإن المخطط يشمل عشرات الجسور والأنفاق، بحسب مواقع متعددة عبر الإنترنت.

ليس الأردن والسلطة الفلسطينية، إذاً، إلّا منطقتين طرفيتين تمثّلان موطئ قدم للوصول إلى العراق وسوريا والدول الخليجية. وبالتالي، فإن مشروع “الكونفدرالية الثلاثية” (بين الأردن والدويلة الفلسطينية والكيان الصهيوني)، والذي يبرز بين الفينة والأخرى، ليس إلّا صيغة سياسية لتسهيل التغلغل الصهيوني في المشرق العربي.  

أسست معاهدة وادي عربة قاعدة لربط البنية التحتية في الأردن بالكيان الصهيوني من خلال عدد من المشاريع، مثل اتفاقية الغاز مع العدو الصهيوني بقيمة 10 مليارات دولار لمدة 15 عاماً لتوليد الكهرباء عام 2016، والتي أصدرت المحكمة الدستورية قراراً في أيار/مايو 2020 أنها لا يمكن أن تُلغى على الرغم من الاحتجاجات، ولا حاجة إلى عرضها على مجلس النواب… ومن تلك الاتفاقيات أيضاً مشروع قناة البحرين (الميت – الأحمر) لتحلية المياه وإنقاذ البحر الميت، بسبب سرقة “إسرائيل” مياه نهر الأردن، والذي لم يتم إعلان صيغة نهائية له بعد.. وهناك أيضاً المناطق الصناعية المؤهلة Qualified Industrial Zones (QIZ’s) والتي يتم بموجبها التصدير إلى الولايات المتحدة منذ التسعينيات من دون جمرك ما دام يوجد فيها مُدخل “إسرائيلي”، وأغلبية الشركات والعمالة فيها غير أردنية أصلاً.. ناهيك بتقارير كثيرة عن تطوير وادي الأردن ومشاريع مناطق حرة وصناعية ثلاثية مع السلطة الفلسطينية.

التطبيع لا ينجح إن لم تضمن “إسرائيل” روافع تمكّنها من قطع الكهرباء والماء والحياة الاقتصادية عن الدول المطبّعة إن هي قررت تغيير رأيها.  فلا أمان للكيان الصهيوني مع رأي شعبي عربي يمكن أن يمارس ضغوطاً تدفع في اتجاه وقف التطبيع. لذلك، فإن النموذج الأردني لإنتاج الكهرباء بغاز فلسطيني مسروق يضع كل مواطن أمام خيار صعب: إمّا أن يقبل التكامل الإقليمي مع “إسرائيل”، وإمّا أن يقبل العيش بلا كهرباء وماء واقتصاد… إلخ. ثم يقال له: إن شئت ألّا تطبّع، فلا تطبِّعْ!  

وستكون لنا عودة إلى البعد الاقتصادي للتطبيع، في مقالات مقبلة، إن شاء الله.

إن الآراء المذكورة في هذه المقالة لا تعبّر بالضرورة عن رأي الميادين وإنما تعبّر عن رأي صاحبها حصراً

Hezbollah Warns Opponents in Lebanese Parliament: We Won’t Let You Be Shields for ‘Israel’

 May 16, 2022

Head of Loyalty to Resistance bloc, Hajj Mohammad Raad, warned on Monday Hezbollah opponents against rejecting the national unity, stressing that the civil peace is a red line.

After the official announcement of the results of the parliamentary elections in which Hezbollah-Amal Movement alliance swept all the Shiite seats, MP Raad stressed that the vote has proved lofty position of the Resistance in the nation.

On May 15, Lebanon witnessed a parliamentary elections which synchronized with an unprecedented crisis caused by the US-backed siege and corruption. Despite the US scheme, the Resistance alliance manage to emerge victorious.

Source: Al-Manar English Website

Lebanon Elections Preliminary Results: Hezbollah, Amal Sweep Shiite Seats in Parliament 

May 16, 2022

Hezbollah and Amal Movement swept Shiite seats in the Lebanese Parliament in Sunday’s vote, despite heavy efforts by rivals, especially the Lebanese Forces, to set a blow to the Shiite duo’s popular base.

According to preliminary results obtained by the electoral machines of both the Shiite duo and their rivals, Hezbollah and Amal gained 27 seats out of 27 Shiite seats, compared to 26 seats in the last elections in 2018.

Head of Hezbollah’s Loyalty to Resistance MP Mohammad Raad earned the highest number of preferential votes in Lebanon with nearly 50,000 Lebanese citizens gave him their votes in South III district.

Hezbollah’s candidate in Mount Lebanon I district (Keserwan, Jbeil) Raed Berro has reportedly gained the Shiite seat which was lost by Hezbollah in 2018.

If confirmed by the Lebanese Interior Ministry’s official results, Hezbollah and Amal are seen as firm and strong powers in the country due to unprecedented campaigns by the Lebanese Forces Party which has raised ‘disarming Hezbollah’ as one of its main electoral topics.

Meanwhile, Hezbollah’s allies suffered several setbacks, with several seats were lost in favor of independent hopefuls and Saudi-backed Lebanese Forces candidates.

Free Patriotic Movement gained nearly 16 sets in the Parliament compared to 29 seats (FPM with its Christian allies) in 2018.

Hezbollah’s allies Wiam Wahhab and Talal Arslan lost their seats in Mount Lebanon IV district.

In north Lebanon Faisal Karami also lost his seat, according to preliminary results.

For its part, Saudi-backed Lebanese Forces Party has reportedly won nearly 19 seats, compared to 15 seats in 2018.

Source: Al-Manar English Website

Related Videos

Lebanon.. Elections of options | A reading of the voting rates and the implications for the Lebanese parliamentary elections
The Israeli media is rushing to present its reading of the results of the Lebanese elections
Lebanon | Officially announcing the results of the parliamentary elections after all the votes have been counted
A reading of the election results, the loss of the majority and the number of forces: We have two scenarios, partnership or else

Related News

Turkey, Israel, Al Qaeda, Kurdish SDF Coordinated Attacks against Syria

ARABI SOURI

Turkey, led by the madman sultan wannabe Erdogan, Israel’s most loyal servant, Israel itself, a host of Al Qaeda and its affiliated terrorist groups, the US-sponsored Kurdish SDF separatist terrorists, with the guidance of the USA and all the help they could receive from other NATO members have escalated their coordinated attacks against the Syrian people, the Syrian army, and the local defense units in central and northern Syria.

Israel carries out its heaviest bombing in months against four Syrian provinces, Hama, Homs, Tartous, and Latakia, the Kurdish SDF separatist terrorists besiege the Syrians in cities and towns in the northeastern Syrian provinces of Raqqa, Deir Ezzor, and Hasakah, and Turkey with its sponsored Al Qaeda terrorist groups join their efforts to attack and bomb local Syrian defense units, towns, and villages in Aleppo countryside.

The past 24 hours are considered the most violent in the US-led war on Syria in the past two years as this video report by Reda Al-Basha for the Lebanese Al Mayadeen news channel adds:

The video is also available on BitChuteRumble, and TikTok.

Transcript

This explosion took the escalation in the northern countryside of Aleppo to levels where the drums of war are beating again, eleven martyrs from the local defense west of Aleppo; Turkey’s militants targeted their bus with a guided missile.

Turkey entered the line of engagement, its artillery bombed villages and towns in the northern countryside of Aleppo, which reflects Ankara’s efforts to expand its geographical escalation from northeastern Syria to its northwest.

Rizan Haddou – Political Analyst: It is a Turkish message, the Syrian opposition factions are just a postman. The message is addressed first to Iran in response to the tension that has marred Turkish-Iranian relations recently. It is also a message to Russia for Turkey to announce that it is the guarantor and is able to control the Syrian opposition factions, which demand to exploit the Russian-Ukrainian war and Russia’s preoccupation, in order to open fronts inside Syria.

The Turkish messages of fire received a violent response from the Syrian army. The Syrian warplanes returned to the skies of the de-escalation zones, destroyed a camp for the Olive Branch militants, and the raids targeted the 111th Regiment of Hay’at Tahrir al-Sham (HTS aka Al-Qaeda in the Levant) west of Aleppo.

An air raid on its side and artillery shelling did not exclude the Turkish military bases.

Sohaib Masri – Syrian journalist: These fronts witnessed a cautious calm more than a year ago when Putin and Erdogan signed a ceasefire and agreed that these fronts would remain calm. There were minor skirmishes through shooting or shelling targeting empty places where there is no military presence, but yesterday there was a new escalation.

24 hours ranks the most violent on the Aleppo fronts for two years, a reality that brings Turkish plans to establish a buffer zone in northern Syria to the forefront of events again, and puts the region at the gates of battles whose fire is looming on the horizon.

Turkey’s transfer of its military escalation from northeastern Syria to its northwest, at a depth of 30 km, reminds us of Turkish efforts to establish a buffer zone along the border with Syria. Ankara wants it as an area to ensure the preservation of its tools from armed groups that can be employed according to the requirements of Turkish needs and interests.

Reda Al-Basha, Aleppo – Al-Mayadin.

End of the transcript

The coordinated attacks are all carried out under the supervision and sponsorship of the Biden junta, led by a demented old man whose hysteric madness against Russia is leading him to burn the world to save his family’s and his cult’s investments in Ukraine, and elsewhere. Distracting Russia in Syria after the Turkish madman Erdogan blocked the Russian navy fleet from moving out of the Black Sea to reach its naval base on the Syrian coast near Tartous sounds like a good strategy presented by some of his non-bright aides.

The main problem with the USA and its satellite states, entities, and terrorist groups is when they put a plan they put it only from their perspective and how they see the world, they do not take into consideration their adversaries counter plans and capabilities, hence the endless failures of the US foreign policies around the globe despite the unspoken level of criminality ever since it took over the empire of evil title from the British somewhere during WWII.

The USA might be at a better advantage than its stooges, it mainly fights from a distance and nobody is interested in waging a war against a wounded beast, the world is watching it licking its wounds and howl through its final days until it implodes from within; the US stooges, however, are either within the battlefronts or directly on its borders, the blowback of the failures will have very harsher repercussions against them.

Make no mistake, the response is coming, sooner than earlier anticipated after the latest escalations, it will come to Israel, its loyal Turkish servant the regime of the Turkish madman Erdogan and his plethora of Al Qaeda terrorist groups, and the ones who will pay the highest price are, as usual, the Kurdish separatists, their only consolation is they’ll join the temporary entity of European and other Zionist settlers in Palestine in paying the price, history repeats itself because it produces lunatics in abundance, lunatics who refuse to learn from history’s lessons and refuse to learn from their own mistakes.

The deeply buried roots of resistance

16 May 2022

Source: Al Mayadeen

Jeremy Salt 

Would they have attacked them had they been of a different ethno-religious background but were still occupiers?  Most certainly yes. These young men had no other motive to do what they did but they were Palestinian and that one word decided their fate.

Had Palestine been partitioned peacefully, even the ‘Jewish state’ would have had a population that was almost 50 percent non-Jewish against an ‘Arab state’ that was 100 per cent Palestinian

The  Palestinian village of Al Muzayri’a was located about 15 kilometers from Ramla.  The attraction was probably rich agricultural land close to a large market town with access to most of the facilities the villagers might need.  Roman and Byzantine ruins were the evidence of the site’s settled history before the long Muslim period of rule began in the 7th century.  Muslim rule was characterised by leaving things as they were as long as the  caliph’s or sultan’s subjects, Muslim, Christian or Jewish,  paid taxes and obeyed the law.  The comparison with the genocide and cultural destruction that followed European conquests is striking. Generally,  Christians and Jews flourished under Muslim rule with not even a remote parallel, in the case of the latter, with the murderous anti-semitism that has characterised European history since the adoption of Christianity.  Needless to say, as Europeans,  the zionist settler-colonists of Palestine used the same murderous tactics  against the indigenous people.  

In the 18th century, the Al Rumayh family from the Ramallah district moved to Al Muzayri’a. At the time it was a small village. Even by 1870 it only had 68 houses and a recorded population of 234 males,  although with women and children the entire population must have been considerably larger.  The census of 1922 showed a wholly Muslim population of 578, the census of 1931, 780, living in 186 houses.  In 1919 a school for boys had been opened, with a school for girls following some time later. 

In 1945, British records indicate,  Al Muzayri’a had a population of 1160,  most of whose food needs were met by the produce of its 10,822 dunums of land, including bananas,  citrus fruit, and cereal crops.  By 1948 the village had a population of 1346 living in 320 houses. Post-1945,  Zionist land acquisition, and settlement had resulted in the loss of 1450 dunums of land but the other 9042 remained the individual or collective property of Al Muzayri’a. The village was included in the territory allotted to the ‘Arab state’ in the UN’s 1947 partition plan. It violated the principle of self-determination and would never have passed but for White House threats to vulnerable African, Latin American, and even European governments.

In any case, partition was never more than a propaganda tool for the zionists. They had no intention of abiding by it. Had Palestine been partitioned peacefully, even the ‘Jewish state’ would have had a population that was almost 50 percent non-Jewish against an ‘Arab state’ that was 100 per cent Palestinian. The ‘Jewish state’ would have been a contradiction in terms and could only have been sustained by apartheid. The expulsion of Palestinians in 1948 and 1967 did not solve this fundamental zionist dilemma, as there are now at least as many Palestinians between the river and the sea as there are zionist colonists. The zionists are back to where they were in 1948,  except that the apartheid state has come into being and is recognised around the world for what it is.

The zionist “declaration of independence” of May 14, 1948,  was followed by a series of military operations aimed at seizing as much territory as possible irrespective of whether it had been allocated to the ‘Arab’ or the ‘Jewish’ state. Operation Dani, launched on July 9,  was largely directed against Ramla and Lydd,   but first surrounding villages had to be ‘cleared.’ On July 12,  Al Muzayri’a was stormed by zionist forces and its entire population was driven out. In The Edge of the Sword,  zionist ‘historian’ Netanel Lorch writes that mortar fire and aerial bombardment were alone sufficient on the first day of the operation to cause the ‘’flight’’ from many villages but those who did not flee were driven out anyway.  Throughout 1948  hundreds of towns, villages and hamlets were to share Al Musayri’a’s fate. The peak of Operation Dani was the ethnic cleansing of Lydd and Ramla, affected through terror, intimidation, and war crimes, including the massacre of 80-100 people taking shelter in the central Dahmash mosque. 

In 1949 two zionist settlements,  Nahalim and Mazor,  were built on Al Muzayri’a’s land.  Even by that time, only stone ruins were left of the village. In the 1990s the town of ‘Elad’ (‘’forever God’’) was built on the site and on May 5, 2022, as the zionists celebrated their ‘independence,’ two young Palestinians killed three people in a park.  

Since March 22, 19 people have been killed in this latest Palestinian ‘’wave of terror’’ as it was inevitably described in the zionist media. Israel has responded with threats to resume the murder of senior Hamas figures, along with hundreds of arrests and raids on the West Bank during which many  Palestinians have been killed. By May 9, 50 Palestinians had been killed so far in 2022, 49 on the West Bank or in the eastern part of occupied al-Quds and one in Gaza.  The dead included two men in their 80s,  two women aged 24 and 47, four boys aged 13,14, 16, and  17, four young men of 18, and two aged 19.  

On May 11, Palestinian-American Al Jazeera journalist Shireen Abu Akleh, born in Al Quds,  was murdered while covering Palestinian resistance in Jenin. The zionist army chief’s claim that she could have been killed by Palestinian gunmen was described by other journalists on the scene as a complete lie. There were no militants anywhere near them.  Shireen’s producer, Ali Samoudi, who was wounded, said zionist soldiers close to the journalists had fired three shots at them.  The first missed,  the second wounded him in the back and the third hit Shireen in the head. Another journalist reaching out to help her said the soldiers did not stop firing even though she was on the ground and mortally wounded.  

In the hunt for the ‘Elad’ assailants, zionist forces also rounded up many West Bank Palestinians described as being in “Israel” ‘’illegally.’’ Such a concept is derisory where the zionist settler state is concerned. It has lived outside any laws except its own for more than 70 years. Its justice system is actually an injustice system, insofar as the Palestinians are concerned. Real justice stands on the side of all Palestinians,  pre-1967, and post-1967 as well as Palestinians living far from their homeland.   

The other issue here is resistance. The right of resistance to occupation is upheld under international law: there is no ‘right’ of occupation, only responsibility as a temporary consequence of war, with the occupier prohibited from settling civilians in occupied territory. It is not just the West and Gaza Strip that are ‘’occupied territories”. This is a fiction that suits the governments that gave Palestine to the zionists in the first place. The tactics used by the zionists in 1948 and 1967 were the same and have been used ever since. ‘Israel’ lives off rights it never had and could never have been bestowed upon it by a third party. Morally, ethically and legally, no right to live can be based on the destruction of another right to live.  In such cases, brute force always dictates the outcome.  

Peace with justice is the preferred option of any reasonable person. but zionism is not a reasonable doctrine. Despite their suffering at the hands of the zionists, the majority of  Palestinians went along with the 1990 Oslo agreements in good faith, only to realise within a few years that the negotiations were being deliberately stretched out by the zionists to consolidate their occupation: in other words, the continuation of war by other means. The duplicity of the previous four decades was simply being dressed up in new clothing.  It was at this point that the Palestinians returned to armed resistance in the form of the second intifada (in fact arguably the third, if the 1936 uprising is to be regarded as the first).

Throughout history how the Palestinians have reacted since 1918 is normal in the lives of an occupied people. Occupation is followed by resistance as naturally as night follows day. The occupier is not just the soldier or the military administrator but the occupier’s civilian population. The occupation turns them into targets as well and who is ultimately responsible if not the government that settled them on someone else’s land? Armed struggle is included in the internationally acknowledged right to resist occupation. The position was summed up on December 3, 1982, when the UN General Assembly passed resolution 37/43 reaffirming ‘’the legitimacy of the struggle of peoples for independence, territorial integrity, national unity and liberation from colonial and foreign domination and foreign occupation by all available means including armed struggle.’’  

Why did the two young Palestinians end the lives of three other human beings in ‘Elad,’ and why in the past few months have other Palestinians launched attacks on the settler population in Bir Saba, Al Quds, and other places? One mind cannot work out the tangled emotions in another mind but did Palestinians attack these settlers just because they were Jews, as the zionist media always claims,  or because they were seen as the occupiers of Palestinian land who happen to be Jewish?   

Would they have attacked them had they been of a different ethno-religious background but were still occupiers?  Most certainly yes. These young men had no other motive to do what they did but they were Palestinian and that one word decided their fate. They would have had the same normal interests, hopes, and aspirations of other young people around the world but the normality of their lives was occupation. Their capacity to do what they did was fuelled by the decades of  death and pain suffered  by every Palestinian family at the hands of the occupier. Al Muzayria and hundreds of other ethnically cleansed villages in 1948;  ‘Elad’, Bir Saba, and other places where settlers who have replaced the original inhabitants have been struck down in 2022;  cause and effect. 

The opinions mentioned in this article do not necessarily reflect the opinion of Al mayadeen, but rather express the opinion of its writer exclusively.

%d bloggers like this: