Trump’s «Deal of the Century» Hasn’t a Hope of Bringing Peace

By Yehuda Shaul, The Guardian

Here in Jerusalem [al-Quds], we await publication of Donald Trump’s “deal of the century”, which is expected to be released in the coming weeks. The US president has promised it will bring an end to a century-long conflict between “Israelis” and our Palestinian neighbors.

But the Trump administration’s vision for peace looks doomed only to further entrench the occupation, as a recent remark from Jason Greenblatt, Trump’s Middle East peace envoy, demonstrated.

Greenblatt retweeted a picture posted by Uri Karzen, a leader in the “Israeli” settler community in the West Bank city of Hebron [a-Khalil]. The picture showed an Iftar celebration in Hebron [al-Khalil] attended by both “Israeli” settlers and a few Palestinians. “We are laying the groundwork for peace,” wrote Karzen. Greenblatt, in his retweet, commended the event: “Groundwork for peace indeed!” he wrote. “A wonderful example of what could be possible.”

As a former “Israeli” soldier who served in Hebron [al-Khalil], the largest Palestinian city in the West Bank, I can say first-hand that it is not a model of coexistence, but rather of segregation.

Hebron [al-Khalil] is home to about 230,000 Palestinians. But some 850 “Israeli” settlers live in the city’s heart. I served as one of 650 combat soldiers permanently stationed in the city in order to protect this small and insular group of settlers.

In 1994, Baruch Goldstein, from the adjacent “Israeli” settlement of Kiryat Arba, entered the Tomb of the Patriarchs in Hebron [al-Khalil] and opened fire on Palestinians during morning prayers, murdering 29 and injuring more than 100. Ostensibly to protect settlers from retaliation by Palestinians after the massacre, the army closed Shuhada Street, the city’s central road, as well as the vegetable, wholesale and meat markets. Closures intensified during the second intifada. In the years that followed, “Israeli” policies, including closures of main roads and markets, and settler and army violence made Palestinian life in the city unbearable, turning the once vibrant center into a ghost town.

It was against this backdrop in 2001-2003 that I found myself serving on the military patrol that accompanied engineers to weld shut the doors of Palestinian homes and shops on Shuhada Street, to close roads for Palestinian vehicular and pedestrian traffic, or turn them “sterile” in the parlance of the “Israel” Occupation Forces [IDF]. I can’t forget the graffiti I saw sprayed on some doors: “Arabs to the crematorium”, “Arabs out” or “Revenge” besides Stars of David.

That racism manifested itself in regular violence: settlers attacked Palestinian pedestrians or neighbors, sometimes even sending their children to do the same. As a soldier, I had orders not to intervene. We were there to protect the settlers, I was told, not the Palestinians.

I was not only a bystander to these events. Around the clock, my unit went on missions whose goal we were explicitly told was “to make our presence felt” in order to “create a feeling among the Palestinian population of being pursued”. During these missions, we would enter random Palestinian homes in the middle of the night, waking up sleeping families for the sole purpose of intimidation, or search random shops during daytime hours. These patrols were perhaps the most routine part of my service in Hebron.

In the years since I finished my military service, none of this has changed. Through my work with Breaking the Silence, an organization of “Israeli” veterans I co-founded that works to bring about an end to the occupation, I know that soldiers who served after me continue to this day to make their presence “felt” in all sorts of ways.

Though Greenblatt uses a joint settler-Palestinian Iftar to claim that we are on our path towards peace, that is meaningless when Palestinians still cannot walk on major roads in their biggest West Bank city. Is this the future Greenblatt dreams of for us? Settler violence is still rampant. The more than 100 physical movement obstacles set up by the army inside the city make routine movement a daily ordeal for thousands. Two different legal systems continue to exist in Hebron [al-Khalil], as is true throughout the West Bank – one for Palestinians [military law] and one for settlers [civil law].

The true objectives of more than half a century of “Israel’s” military occupation over the Palestinians are clearer in Hebron [al-Khalil] than anywhere else – to achieve Palestinian subjugation in a segregated and unequal reality.

If we were in 1950s Alabama, would Greenblatt say that a joint meal between white and black people was the way forward? Or would he recognize that the way to achieve equality is to end the legal system of discrimination and ensure the protection of equal rights? Hebron [al-Khalil] is no different – the only solution is the end to the occupation.

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Kamel Hawwash: Trump’s Deal of the Century, A Mirage Already Rejected by Palestinians

Mon May 06, 2019 9:12
Kamel Hawwash: Trump’s Deal of the Century, A Mirage Already Rejected by Palestinians
Kamel Hawwash: Trump’s Deal of the Century, A Mirage Already Rejected by Palestinians

‘Israel’ Surrendered to Palestinian Resistance .. 700 Missiles, Dozens Dead or Injured, Mass Destruction: Zionist Media

May 6, 2019

Capture

The Zionist politicians, analysts as well as media outlets reflected clearly the enemy’s disappointment of the outcome of the recent military confrontation with the Palestinian resistance, as Maariv newspaper considered that PM B3enjamin Netanyahu is unable to solve the problem of Gaza and lacks bravery to do that.

The Israeli media outlets highlighted the public dissatisfaction with mass destruction inflicted upon the settlements by the Palestinian missiles, knowing that Member of the Knesset Meir Cohen stressed that “Israel’ surrendered and Netanyahu backed off.

The various Zionist politicians also stressed that the 700 missiles fired from Gaza as well as the dozens of settlers who were killed or wounded obliged ‘Israel’ to surrender to the Palestinian “blackmailing”.

The Palestinian resistance and the Zionist enemy reached Monday a truce after three days of Israeli aggression in the besieged Gaza strip.

Source: Al-Manar English Website

Details of Ceasefire Reached with Israeli Occupation in Gaza

Gaza

Palestinian sources reported reaching a truce between Palestinian resistance and Israeli occupation after three days of Israeli aggression in the besieged Gaza strip.

The sources listed terms of the Egypt-brokered deal as follow:

  • IOF has to refrain from shooting at Palestinian protesters during Great March of Return rallies at the border with Gaza
  • ‘Israel’ to implement previous understandings which comprise lifting all forms of siege on Gaza
  • Hostilities to be ceased at 04:45 a.m. on Monday (01:45 GMT)
  • The deal to be committed to by both sides
  • ‘Israel’ vows not to violate the truce as in previous deals
  • International organizations to be allowed to offer aid to Palestinians who were harmed by the aggression which started on Friday (May 3, 2019)
  • ‘Israel’ vows not to carry out assassination attempts against military and civilian Palestinian figures
  • Fishing zone of the coastal enclave to be extended to 12 miles
  • IOF to refrain from targeting Palestinian farmers east of Gaza

The sources also reported that Palestinian resistance factions informed the Israeli occupation it should not “cross the red lines” and attack Palestinians in Al-Quds and West Bank.

Source: Al-Manar

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US “Deal of the Century” Eliminates Two-state Solution

Capture

May 3, 2019

US president’s son-in-law and advisor Jared Kushner said that the upcoming ‘peace’ plan (“Deal of the Century”) will not include a two-state solution to the Palestinian-Israeli conflict, considering that it has not worked out during the previous rounds of talks.

Speaking at the Washington Institute for Near East Policy, Kushner said that the creative ideas must be suggested to reach a solution, rejecting to reveal more details.

So far, US has carried out some of the Deal of the Century’s dangerous stipulations by acknowledging Al-Quds as the capital of the Zionist entity and annexing Syria’s Golan to ‘Israel’. It also stopped aiding the United Nations relief agency for Palestinian refugees in preparation for naturalizing them in the host countries.

Kushner pointed out that Washington would mull annexing the Zionist settlements in the West Bank with the Israeli officials after the formation of their government.

Source: Al-Manar English Website

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Graphic Designers to Support Palestinian Right of Return

Mon Apr 29, 2019 5:16

Graphic Designers to Support Palestinian Right of Return

TEHRAN (FNA)– Graphic designers from around the world will take part at the first “Return of the Century” international graphic workshop in Iran to support the cause of the Palestinian people’s right to return to their own land.

Secretary of the International Union of Unified Ummah (IUUU) Alireza Komeili said on Monday morning that the first iteration of the international poster workshop is slated to kick off in Iran’s Eastern city of Mashhad this week.

“The workshop seeks to promote an artistic confrontation to Americans’ insolence in backing Israel and floating the dangerous idea of the ‘deal of the century’,” Komeili said.

The event will be held in a bid to raise awareness about the Israeli occupation of Palestine and US President Donald Trump’s so-called “deal of the century” which is designed to do away with the Palestinian people’s right to return to their own land.

According to Komeili, the three-day event will focus on the three main issues of the “deal of the century”, Arab countries’ normalization of ties with Israel and America’s recognition of Jerusalem al-Quds as Israel’s so-called capital.

The workshop will be attended by graphic designers from 12 countries, including 30 artists from Iran.

Komeili said 40 posters will be selected at the end of the event to be showcased by pro-Palestinian groups around the world on the Nakba Day (the Day of Catastrophe) as well as the International Quds Day.

On Sunday, A senior leader of the Hamas resistance movement stated that Palestinians will never agree to Trump’s controversial proposal for peace between the Israelis and Palestinians, dubbed “the deal of the century”.

Addressing a national meeting of the leaders of Palestinian political factions in Gaza City on Saturday, Ismail Haniyeh, the head of the Hamas political bureau, stressed that Hamas would make use of all its potential and capabilities to confront the American scheme, calling for unity among Palestinian parties in the face of the plot, presstv reported.

“We are able to achieve national unity and run our Palestinian homeland without much effort if there is great will and genuine intention. Our nation is utterly determined to protect the Palestinian cause. It is steadfast to deal with the deal of the century, no matter what the challenges or sacrifices could be,” Haniyeh pointed out.

He added, “The Palestinian nation will remain in the occupied territories and confront arrogance until we achieve freedom and independence.”

Haniyeh further warned that Washington was determined to liquidate the Palestinian cause through the so-called deal of the century.

He pointed out that the US attempted to completely destroy the Palestinian cause through rejection of Palestinian refugees’ right of return, abolition of the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA), recognition of Israeli sovereignty over the occupied Golan Heights, giving green light to Israel’s official annexation of settlements in the occupied West Bank, and fomenting political rift between the Palestinian factions based in the West Bank and the Gaza Strip.

Haniyeh underlined that the political agenda of all Israeli parties was based on this ideology: “No to the return of Palestinian refugees, no to the establishment of a Palestinian state and no to al-Quds as the capital of Palestine.”

The senior Palestinian official then said Hamas was ready to enter talks with other Palestinian factions to form a national unity government.

Haniyeh reiterated that Palestinian land belonged only to Palestinians and that they would not give an inch of it to the occupying regime of Israel.

The Hamas official also called on all Palestinians across the world to stand against Washington’s so-called deal of the century.

Haniyeh finally urged all Arab leaders to stop normalization of diplomatic ties with Israel.

Trump’s so-called “peace plan” has been dismissed by Palestinian authorities ahead of its unveiling at the end of the holy fasting month of Ramadan and the formation of the new Israeli cabinet, most likely in June.

Speaking in the occupied West Bank city of Ramallah in mid-April, Palestinian Prime Minister Mohammad Shtayyeh lashed out at Trump’s initiative, asserting that it was “born dead.”

Shtayyeh noted that negotiations with the US were useless in the wake of the country’s relocation of its embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem al-Quds, which Palestinians consider the capital city of their future state.

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The South and Gaza were liberated due to the growing resistance …but time is not over بفعل الممانعة نَمَت المقاومة وتحرّر الجنوب وغزة… والزمن طويل

أبريل 29, 2019

Written by Nasser Kandil,

Long decades ago, the occupation was the strongest, it was said what was refused by the leaders who stick to the Arab rights especially the right of the Palestinians has become a dream after awhile, and the resolution of the division of Palestine which was not accepted by the Arabs has become an unattainable dream later. It is known that Israel does not accept such resolution and no one in the United Nations initiated to put an agenda to implement the resolution of division no 181 as the resolution dedicated to the return of the displaced no 194. And what would have issued due to the Arab acceptance is similar to what was issued by the Arab acceptance of the resolutions 242 and 338; the survival of the occupation and the rash towards peace.  While Israel is Judaizing the land and devouring more geography, it strengthens itself in preparation for a war to come and to occupy new territories. The Arab acceptance of those resolutions does not prevent the occupation of Beirut and the South of Lebanon.

After the American announcement of the recognition of Jerusalem as the capital of Israel and the annexation of Golan to Israel, there were who said similarly that if the Palestinians have accepted what was offered by Bill Clinton and Ehud Barak in 2000 as half or quarter of the Eastern Jerusalem, they would not have lost all Jerusalem today, and if Syria has accepted Golan without Tiberius, it would not have lost all Golan. Those do not forget to say the contradiction; While they are pretending that they highly appreciate the leading capacity of the late Palestinian President Yasser Arafat and the Late Syrian President Hafez Al-Assad, they refuse to admit that the rejection was made by them. Then they say that if they have known that before , they would not done so.

Let us discuss that, when the President Yasser Arafat accepted Oslo Accords, did the Israeli implement it? What was the result in areas A, B,and C, and when Syria accepted the Agreement of disengagement in 1974 as a temporary starting point for the withdrawal from Golan under American guarantee, did that happen/? when Lebanon accepted the resolution 425 and was seeking to implement it, did anyone respond?  And when Washington signed the nuclear understanding with Iran, did it hesitate to withdraw from it? Therefore, will the American signing on the agreement on Golan prevent the withdrawal from it, since the American signing on the agreement of disengagement which is based on the recognition that Golan is Syrian did not prevent it from the recognition of the annexation of Golan to Israel. Therefore, the only constant is not what was not accepted by the Arabs to avoid the worse or a search for a peaceful solution or what is signed by the American or the Israeli, rather it is the balance of forces.

Jerusalem and Golan are under the occupation since 1967, and the talk about the annexation is a political interpretation of the occupation not an expression of the change in the balances of forces, it is an interpretation of the inability to got the Syrian-Palestinian recognition of the legitimacy of the occupation of Palestine as an inevitable cost of any understanding proposed by Washington and Tel Aviv. So those who forgot that the Syrian rejection of bargain in the time of the late President Hafez Al-Assad has led to balances of forces which contributed in the rise of the resistance forces which liberated the South of Lebanon and Gaza without negotiation and without the recognition of the legitimacy of occupation have to be reminded that the objection that prevented the incomplete return of Golan as Sinaa has fortified the resistance and ensured the complete return of the South of Lebanon and Gaza, and because time is not over, the resistance which led to these two successive liberations will soon liberate Golan and what is far from Golan and Gaza…Jerusalem as well,,, let days witness that.

Translated by Lina Shehadeh,

بفعل الممانعة نَمَت المقاومة وتحرّر الجنوب وغزة… والزمن طويل

مارس 30, 2019

ناصر قنديل

– خلال عقود طويلة كانت يد الاحتلال فيها هي القوية وصاحبة القضاء والقدر، كان يقال لنا إن ما رفضه القادة المتمسّكون بالحقوق العربية وأولها الحق بفلسطين كل فلسطين صار حلماً بعد حين، وإن قرار تقسيم فلسطين الذي لم يقبله العرب، صار حلماً بعيد المنال لاحقاً. وللعلم والتذكير فإن «إسرائيل» لم تقبل القرار، ولم يبادر أحد في الأمم المتحدة لوضع روزنامة لتطبيق قرار التقسيم الذي يحمل الرقم 181 مثله مثل القرار الخاص بعودة اللاجئين الذي يحمل الرقم 194، وكل ما كان سينشأ عن القبول العربي هو شبيه بما نشأ عن قبول العرب المشابه بقرارات مثل الـ242 و338، وهو بالتحديد بقاء الاحتلال واللهاث وراء سراب اسمه السلام، فيما إسرائيل تهوّد الأرض وتلتهم المزيد من الجغرافيا وتزيد منسوب القوة استعداداً لحرب قادمة واحتلال أرض جديدة، فاحتلال بيروت وجنوب لبنان لم يمنع وقوعهما القبول العربي بمشاريع الحلول التي سبقت.

– مع الإعلان الأميركي عن الاعتراف بالقدس عاصمة لـ»إسرائيل» وبضمّ «إسرائيل» للجولان صعدت أصوات تتحدّث بلغة مشابهة تقول، لو قبل الفلسطينيون بما عرضه عليهم بيل كلينتون وإيهودا باراك عام 2000، وفيه نصف القدس الشرقية أو ربعها، لما كانوا كما هم اليوم يخسرون كل القدس، ولو قبلت سورية بما عُرض عليها من الجولان بلا أمتار طبريا، لما وصلت الأمور إلى خسارة كل الجولان، وطبعاً لا ينسى المتحدثون أن يقولوا النقيضين، فهم يحاولون الإيحاء أنهم يقدّرون عالياً القدرة القيادية للرئيس الفلسطيني الراحل ياسر عرفات والرئيس السوري الراحل حافظ الأسد، وينسون أن الرفض تمّ على يديهما، ثم يستدركون بأنهما لو عرفا أن رفضهما سيجلب هذه النتائج لما فعلا.

– حسناً. سنأخذ الكلام بقدر حجم عقول أصحابه ونسير بالأمر كما يقدّمونه، فنسأل عندما قبل الرئيس ياسر عرفات باتفاقية أوسلو، هل نفّذها الإسرائيلي؟ وماذا كانت الحصيلة في المناطق أ وب و ج؟ وهل ما يحكم التنفيذ لأي اتفاقية هو شيء آخر غير موازين القوى التي تولد فيها؟ وعندما قبلت سورية باتفاقية فك الاشتباك عام 1974 كنقطة انطلاق مؤقتة للانسحاب من الجولان بضمانة أميركية هل حدث ذلك وتمّ الانسحاب؟ وعندما قبل لبنان بالقرار 425 وبقي يلاحق العالم لتطبيقه هل سمع له أحد؟ وعندما وقعت واشنطن على التفاهم النووي مع إيران، هل منعها ذلك من الانسحاب منها من طرف واحد؟ وهل سيمنع التوقيع الأميركي على اتفاق حول الجولان من الانسحاب منه لاحقاً، كما لم يمنع التوقيع الأميركي على اتفاق فك الاشتباك القائم على أن الاعتراف بأن الجولان سوري الهوية من إعلان معاكس بالاعتراف بضم الجولان لـ»إسرائيل»؟ فالثابت الوحيد لم يكن يوماً بما يقبل العرب، تفادياً للأسوأ، أو سعياً لحل سلمي، أو ما يوقع عليه الأميركي أو يوقع عليه الإسرائيلي، الثابت الوحيد هو ميزان القوى، وميزان القوى فقط.

– القدس والجولان تحت الاحتلال أصلاً منذ العام 1967، والحديث عن الضمّ هو ترجمة سياسية للاحتلال وليس تعبيراً عن تبدّل في موازين القوى، بل الأصح هو ترجمة للعجز عن الحصول على الاعتراف السوري والفلسطيني بشرعية احتلال فلسطين، كثمن حتمي لأي تفاهم تعرضه واشنطن وتل أبيب، والذين ثقبت ذاكرتهم ونسوا أن الرفض السوري للمساومة في زمن الرئيس الراحل حافظ الأسد، أنتج موازين القوى التي ساهمت بتصاعد قوة المقاومة التي حرّرت جنوب لبنان وغزة دون تفاوض ودون منح الشرعية لاحتلال باقي الأرض العربية، لا بدّ من تذكيرهم بأن الممانعة التي حالت دون العودة المنقوصة للجولان على طريقة عودة سيناء، هي التي حضنت المقاومة فضمنت عودة غير منقوصة لجنوب لبنان وغزة، ولأن الزمن بيننا وبين أميركا طويل، فالسياق الذي بدأ مع الممانعة وتطوّر مع المقاومة وأنتج تحريرين متلاحقين، سيكتمل بتحرير غير بعيد للجولان، وتحرير لاحق لما بعد الجولان وما بعد غزة، والقدس ليست بعيدة، والأيام بيننا.

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Shadow of Sarajevo 1914 Hangs Over Trump’s Golan Coup

Martin Sieff
April 26, 2019
Trump and Netanyahu still congratulate themselves on getting the United States to recognize Israel’s annexation of the Golan Heights. They should not.

It looked like an absurd petty vanity in 1908 when the Austro-Hungarian Empire formally annexed the obscure Balkan provinces of Bosnia and Herzegovina: Six years later that move set off the greatest war in human history and destroyed the old empire forever.

The Israelis have just made the same mistake in getting the United States under President Donald Trump to recognize their annexation of the Golan Heights.

Israel took control of the Golan Heights on June 11, 1967 after a fiercely fought war over the territory with Syria. Israeli settlements in the northern Jordan Valley directly below the Golan had been repeatedly shelled during the previous two decades of fragile peace. The Israelis were therefore determined to keep control of the Golan area to prevent a future invasion by Syria and its allies into northern Israel. That nearly happened in the 1973 Yom Kippur War or War of Ramadan when hugely outnumbered Israeli screening forces were taken by surprise by the Syrians and only held them off in ferocious tank battles that are still closely studied today by war colleges all around the world.

That experience left the Israelis more determined than ever to hold on to the Golan territories and the Syrians more determined than ever to regain them.

Right wing nationalist Israeli Prime Minister Menahem Begin proved willing – eventually – to give up all of the Sinai Peninsula back to Egypt in the 1977-79 peace process with then-Egyptian President Anwar Sadat. But Begin proved implacable in his refusal to consider a similar bargain with President Hafez Assad, Syria’s leader for 30 years. In December 1981, Begin unilaterally annexed the Golan Heights.

Ironically, Yitzhak Rabin, Israel’s guiding strategic genius for three decades from his assumption of command as Army Chief of Staff in 1964 to his assassination while serving as prime minister in 1995, was prepared to consider returning the Golan to Syria before he was gunned down, shot in the back by Yigael Amir, a young Israeli religious-nationalist fanatic and student at Israel’s ultra-Orthodox religious center of higher education Bar-Ilan University.

For the previous two decades, Rabin, during his long terms as Israeli defense minister had actually come to a remarkable quiet understanding with Assad. Both men quietly respected each other and they both loathed and distrusted Palestine Liberation Organization Chairman Yasser Arafat. As a result, they proved highly effective in keeping the peace.

Clashes between Syrian and Israeli ground forces during Israel’s invasion of Lebanon in 1982 were carefully kept extremely limited in scope on both sides. And apart from that brief conflict, not a single Israeli or Syrian soldier was killed in action along their joint border during all the years Rabin and Assad senior held power.

As long as Rabin and Hafez Assad both lived there was a surprising amount of stability and peace between Tel Aviv and Damascus. That condition at first continued following the passing of both men. Assad died in office in 2000 and was succeeded by his son Bashir who still rules Syria now.

But today we see a very different situation. The US and Israeli obsession with toppling Bashir Assad and ending his close ties with Iran and Hezbollah led to the catastrophic Western support of extreme Islamists, ludicrously presented as democratic forces in the Arab Spring of 2011. The US government driven by then-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and supported by the United Kingdom and France as well as Israel believed Assad could be quickly toppled – which indeed proved to be the fate of Libya’s veteran leader Muammar Qadafi.

But Bashir Assad proved to be made of sterner stuff. The half of Syria forced from his government’s control did not experience some golden age. Most of it fell into the merciless hands of the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS). The ancient Assyrian Christian and other minority communities of Syria who had been protected by the Assad governments were virtually annihilated in those terrible years. The Assad government fought back. Backed by Russia, Iran and Hezbollah, it survived and has reestablished itself. The United States and its allies refuse to recognize these realities. Trump’s move to boost Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s standing by legally recognizing Israel’s annexation of the Golan plunges both countries further into dangerous delusion.

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