PA Political Circus: Why Abbas Must Hand the Keys over to the PLO

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June 24, 2020

Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas and Palestinian Prime Minister Mohammad Shtayyeh in Ramallah. (Photo: via Facebook)

By Ramzy Baroud

The painful truth is that the Palestinian Authority of President Mahmoud Abbas has already ceased to exist as a political body that holds much sway or relevance, either to the Palestinian people or to Abbas’ former benefactors, namely the Israeli and the American governments.

So, when the Palestinian Authority Prime Minister, Mohammed Shtayyeh, announced on June 9, that the Palestinian leadership had submitted a ‘counter-proposal’ to the US’ Middle East peace plan, also known as the ‘Deal of the Century’, few seemed to care.

We know little about this ‘counter-proposal’, aside from the fact that it envisages a demilitarized Palestinian state within the pre-1967 borders. We also know that the Palestinian leadership is willing to accept land swaps and border adjustments, a provision that has surely been inserted to cater for Israel’s demographic and security needs.

It is almost certain that nothing will come out of Shtayyeh’s counter-proposal and no independent Palestinian state is expected to result from the seemingly historical offer. So, why did Ramallah opt for such a strategy only days before the July 1 deadline, when the Israeli government of Benjamin Netanyahu is expected to launch its process of illegal annexation in the occupied West Bank and the Jordan Valley?

The main reason behind Shtayyeh’s announcement is that the Palestinian leadership is often accused by Israel, the US and their allies of supposedly rejecting previous ‘peace’ overtures.

Rightly, the Palestinian Authority rejected the ‘Deal of the Century’, because the latter represents the most jarring violation of international law yet. The ‘Deal’ denies Palestine’s territorial rights in occupied East Jerusalem, dismisses the right of return for Palestinian refugees altogether, and gives carte blanche to the Israeli government to colonize more Palestinian land.

In principle, Netanyahu also rejected the American proposal, though without pronouncing his rejection publicly. Indeed, the Israeli leader has already dismissed any prospects of Palestinian statehood and has decided to move forward with the unilateral annexation of nearly 30% of the West Bank without paying any heed to the fact that even Trump’s unfair ‘peace’ initiative called for mutual dialogue before any annexation takes place.

As soon as Washington’s plan was announced in January, followed by Israel’s insistence that annexation of Palestinian territories was imminent, the Palestinian Authority spun into a strange political mode, far more unpredictable and bizarre than ever before.

One after another, Palestinian Authority officials began making all sorts of contradictory remarks and declarations, notable amongst them Abbas’ decision on May 19 to cancel all agreements signed between Palestinians and Israel.

This was followed by another announcement, on June 8, this time by Hussein Al-Sheikh, a senior Palestinian Authority official and Abbas’ confidante, that if annexation takes place the Authority would cut off civil services to Palestinians so that Israel may assume its legal role as an Occupying Power as per international norms.

A third announcement was made the following day by Shtayyeh himself, who threatened that, if Israel claims sovereignty over parts of the West Bank, the Authority would retaliate by declaring statehood within the pre-1967 borders.

The Palestinian counter-proposal was declared soon after this hotchpotch of announcements, most likely to offset the state of confusion that is marring the Palestinian body politic. It is the Palestinian leadership’s way of appearing pro-active, positive, and stately.

The Palestinian initiative also aims at sending a message to European countries that, despite Abbas’ cancellation of agreements with Israel, the Palestinian Authority is still committed to the political parameters set by the Oslo Accords as early as September 1993.

What Abbas and Shtayyeh are ultimately hoping to achieve is a repeat of an earlier episode that followed the admission of Palestine as a non-state member of the United Nations General Assembly in 2011. Salam Fayyad, who served as the Authority Prime Minister at the time, also waved the card of the unilateral declaration of statehood to force Israel to freeze the construction of illegal Jewish settlements.

Eventually, the Palestinian Authority was co-opted by then-US Secretary of State, John Kerry, to return to another round of useless negotiations with Israel, which won the Authority another ten years, during which time it received generous international funds while selling Palestinians false hope for an imaginary state.

Sadly, this is the current strategy of the Palestinian leadership: a combination of threats, counter-proposals and such, in the hope that Washington and Tel Aviv will agree to return to a by-gone era.

Of course, the Palestinian people, occupied, besieged, and oppressed are the least relevant factor in the Palestinian Authority’s calculations, but this should come as no surprise. The Palestinian leadership has operated for many years without a semblance of democracy, and the Palestinian people neither respect their government nor their so-called President. They have made their feelings known, repeatedly, in many opinion polls in the past.

In the last few months, the Authority has used every trick in the book to demonstrate its relevance and its seriousness in the face of the dual-threat of Trump’s ‘Deal of the Century’ and Netanyahu’s annexation of Palestinian lands. Yet, the most significant and absolutely pressing step, that of uniting all Palestinians, people and factions, behind a single political body and a single political document, is yet to be taken.

Considering all of this, it is no exaggeration to argue that Abbas’ Authority is gasping its last breath, especially if its traditional European allies fail to extend a desperately needed lifeline. The guarded positions adopted by EU countries have, thus far, signaled that no European country is capable or even willing to fill the gap left open by Washington’s betrayal of the Palestinian Authority and of the ‘peace process’.

Until the Authority hands over the keys to the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) so that the more democratically representative Palestinian body can start a process of national reconciliation, Netanyahu will, tragically, remain the only relevant party, determining the fate of Palestine and her people.

– Ramzy Baroud is a journalist and the Editor of The Palestine Chronicle. He is the author of five books. His latest is “These Chains Will Be Broken: Palestinian Stories of Struggle and Defiance in Israeli Prisons” (Clarity Press, Atlanta). Dr. Baroud is a Non-resident Senior Research Fellow at the Center for Islam and Global Affairs (CIGA), Istanbul Zaim University (IZU). His website is www.ramzybaroud.net

جيفري و2011… أم برّي و1982؟

ناصر قنديل

وضع رئيس مجلس النواب نبيه بري الأزمة المالية التي تزداد وطأتها على اللبنانيين، في قلب مقاربة يتجاهلها الكثير من السياسيين، ويرغب الكثير من المسؤولين مواصلة حالة الإنكار في النظر إليها؛ وجوهرها أن صراعاً استراتيجياً يدور من حول لبنان، وتتداخل فيه محاولات الاستحواذ على موقع لبنان الحساس في هذا الصراع المثلث الأبعاد، لدرجة تحوله إلى الموقع المقرر في رسم مستقبل الوجهة التي سيسلكها الوضع من حوله في ضوء الموقع الذي يرسو عليه لبنان، والصراع المثلث الذي تحدّث عنه بري، هو الصراع على قوس النفط والغاز في الساحل الشرقي للبحر المتوسط، وفي قلبه محاور الممرات المائية نحو أوروبا، والصراع على سورية ومن حولها من بوابة قانون قيصر، وموقع دول الجوار السوري فيه، والصراع على أمن كيان الاحتلال ومستقبل القضية الفلسطينية، من بوابة صفقة القرن، ضمن محاولة تفتيت المنطقة إلى كيانات عنصريّة متناحرة.

التدقيق في خريطة بري، يُظهر نقاط الضعف والقوة في المشهد الاستراتيجي، كما يظهر الموقع الحاسم لتموضع لبنان في رسم مستقبلها، بصورة تفسر استعارته لتشبيه الوضع بما كان عليه عام 1982، مع اجتياح جيش الاحتلال للعاصمة اللبنانية، فمن جهة تقف مصر سداً أمام الأطماع التركية في نفط وغاز ليبيا، لكنها شريك في أنبوب غاز مع كيان الاحتلال يستهدف شق الطرق المائية نحو أوروبا، تمنعه اتفاقات تركيا مع حكومة فائز السراج في ليبيا، فتحمي عملياً أحادية الأنبوب الروسي التركي نحو أوروبا، ومن جهة مقابلة، يقف العراق في ظل حكومته الجديدة برئاسة مصطفى الكاظمي على ضفة التمسك بالاستثناءات من العقوبات الأميركية على إيران، فيما تسعى واشنطن مقابل ذلك لضمان مشاركته في إغلاق حدود الجوار السوري ضمن مفاعيل قانون قيصر، ومن جهة ثالثة يشكل الأردن المتضرّر الأكبر من صفقة القرن، سواء بضم القدس وغور الأردن إلى كيان الاحتلال، أو أصلاً بإحياء نظرية الوطن البديل للفلسطينيين، الرئة التي يراد إقفالها على سورية، وهو الشريك في أنبوب الغاز المشترك بين مصر وكيان الاحتلال.

وفقاً لخريطة بري يبدو لبنان حلقة الترجيح في ظل تعقيدات محاور الاشتباك الساخن الدائر من حول لبنان، كما عام 1982، فرفض رفع الراية البيضاء أمام المشروع المثلث لكيان الاحتلال، بعناوين أميركية، لخنق المقاومة وسورية وتمرير أنبوب الغاز إلى أوروبا، سينتج خريطة جديدة. وتبدو صيغة بري للمواجهة هذه المرة من موقع الدولة خلافاً لمواجهة عام 82 في الميدان، ولذلك فهي تقوم على تمسك لبنان بحقوقه في النفط والغاز، في المفاوضات التي يمسك بري بإدارتها، غير القابلة لإعادة النظر، ويتكامل مع سورية لتشكيل أنبوب ثالث لثروات المتوسط، يتطلع لضمّ الأردن ومصر إليه، وبناء علاقة تعاون مع روسيا من موقع عربي مستقلّ عن تركيا وكيان الاحتلال. ونقطة القوة اللبنانية هنا يكشفها الربط الأميركي الذي كشف عنه معاون وزير الخارجية الأميركية ديفيد شينكر بين ترسيم حدود لبنان البحرية بما يُرضي كيان الاحتلال وأزمة لبنان المالية، من جهة، وبين هذا الترسيم وقدرة كيان الاحتلال على استثمار ذي قيمة تجارية لكيان الاحتلال لثروات الغاز، من جهة موازية، تفسر الإلحاح الأميركي، وفي المسارات الموازية لا تبتعد خطة بري عن سعي لسوار لبناني عراقي أردني يخاطب العقوبات على سورية بلغة المصالح الوطنية لدول الجوار السوري، وعن سعي لموقف مصري سوري أردني عراقي لبناني موحّد من صفقة القرن الهادفة لتصفية مصالح الفلسطينيين وقضيتهم، وإصابة مصالح حيوية للبنان بتصفية حق العودة، وللأردن بجعله وطناً بديلاً للفلسطينيين، وتصيب مصالح العراق ومصر باستقرار إقليمي سيتكفل بتفجيره حصار سورية وانهيار لبنان، وانفجار فلسطين.

تقابل دعوة بري، دعوة أميركية أطلقها المبعوث الأميركي الخاص حول سورية، جيمس جيفري، كاشفاً الإدراك الأميركي لتغير الموازين، بإعلان هدف الضغوط الأميركية الجديدة، تحت عنوان العودة إلى ما قبل 2011، لجهة التسليم بانتصار الدولة السورية، مقابل سحب وجود قوى المقاومة من سورية. بينما العودة إلى ما قبل العام 2011 في روزنامة بري تعني، العودة إلى ما قبل خط هوف المقترح أميركياً لترسيم الحدود البحرية للبنان بمنظار مصالح كيان الاحتلال، وما قبل صفقة القرن والاعتراف الأميركي بضم الجولان، وما قبل العقوبات المشددة على إيران، وما قبل حرب اليمن، فهل غابت عن العقل الأميركي استحالة العودة إلى العام 2011 على قدم واحدة، وما يمكن أن يفتحه العنوان من أبواب موازية، تلاقيها دعوة بري التي تنتظر لتكتمل معالمها نضجاً لبنانياً، وانتباهاً مصرياً وعراقياً وأردنياً؟

روسيا والصين وكسر حاجز الصمت

لزمن طويل كانت الدوائر الدبلوماسية في الصين وروسيا تفضل البقاء في دائرة الدفاع عن سياساتهما الرسمية القائمة على عناوين عريضة من نوع رفض الحروب والتدخلات والاحتكام إلى القانون الدولي والمساعي الأممية بحثاً عن الحل السياسي. وبعد التموضع الروسي في سورية رفع الروس وتيرة المشاركة في السجال الذي تمتهنه واشنطن لتسويق سياساتها، لكنهم بقوا عند حدود الدفاع عن نزاهة الدور الروسي وقانونيته وشرعيته والحرص على عدم توجيه الاتهامات المباشرة لواشنطن حرصاً على عدم التورط في الرد والرد على الرد.

أظهرت الأيام الأخيرة تطوراً نوعياً في السجال الأميركي الروسي الصيني حول لبنان، فخرج السفير الروسي على قناة المنار يصف اتهامات معاون وزير الخارجية الأميركية ديفيد شنكر لحزب الله بالمسؤولية عن الأزمة الاقتصادية بدفاع مستغرَب عن الفساد ومسؤوليته في تخريب الاقتصاد اللبناني ومحاولة تسييس يائسة للملف الاقتصادي، مؤكداً اهتمام الشركات الروسية بلبنان، واضعاً محاولات واشنطن إبعاد روسيا والصين عن لبنان في دائرة السعي لوضع اليد على لبنان كحلقة في النفوذ الحساس في منطقة الشرق الأوسط من زاوية جيواستراتيجية بينما روسيا والصين تؤمنان بأن لبنان بلد توازنات يجب أن يتعاون مع الجميع.

كلام السفير الصيني، الذي نادراً ما يدخل على الملفات الخلافية، ونادراً ما يتحدث عن السياسات الدولية واللبنانية خارج إطار العموميّات، جاء بسقف عالٍ في رده على شينكر، وصولاً لحد نصيحة الدبلوماسي الأميركي بالاهتمام برفاه شعبه وصحته في ضوء تعثر إدارته بمواجهة وباء كورونا مفصلاً في رده كل النقاط التي اثارها شينكر في محاولة التشويش على أي انفتاح لبناني صيني. واللافت هو اللغة العالية النبرة التي استخدمها السفير الصيني قياساً بتحفظه التقليدي، وبالطريقة الصينية المعتمدة بتفادي السجالات.

الواضح أن روسيا والصين قررتا كسر جدار الصمت أمام الحملات الأميركية، لكن الأوضح من خلال اللغة الأميركية القاسية في التطاول على روسيا والصين، والردود الروسية الصينية الأشد قسوة، ولو من موقع الدفاع، هو أن لبنان بات نقطة صراع مفصليّة على ساحل المتوسط، وأن التبعية الثقافية للعديد من السياسيين والمسؤولين اللبنانيين التي تعميهم عن رؤية حجم تراجع القدرة الأميركية على الاستئثار بالنقاط الجيواستراتيجية على ساحل المتوسط، ستجعل الصراع أشد وطأة على لبنان واللبنانيين.

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Questions to do with Erasing the History of Slavery and Colonial Abuse

 BY GILAD ATZMON

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Raised by Gilad Atzmon

Are the young Brits and Americans who genuinely feel guilty about the colonial and racist crimes of their white ancestors also willing to be subject to a special whites-only tax allocating a significant portion of their incomes to Black organizations so justice can, finally, prevail? Will these young White revolutionary spirits support, for instance,  a bill that prevents White people (including their parents of course) from passing their wealth to their offspring  so justice can be done and Black people can be  compensated for centuries of racist abuse?  I really am trying to figure out the true meaning of ‘White guilt,’ does it carry personal consequences? 

Since the history of the British Empire’s criminality is vast, I find myself wondering whether our guilt-ridden revolutionary youngsters also feel responsible for the situation in Palestine?  Are they going to push the British Government to put to an end to its ties with Israel until justice is restored in Palestine and the indigenous people of the land are invited to return to their villages and cities? Are those young British anti racists willing to come forward and apologise to the people of Pakistan or Ireland? And what about the people of Dresden? In short, I would like to know what, exactly, are the boundaries of this British post-colonial ‘ethical awakening’? 

I wonder whether those who insist upon toppling Churchill’s monuments are willing to accept the possibility that David Irving  might have been right all along in his reading of the British leader? 

Since the Left has fought an intensive and relentless battle against the notion of ‘historical revisionism,’ I wonder whether those who currently insist upon ‘setting the record straight’ understand that what they do de facto is revise the past. Is it possible that the Left has finally accepted that revisionism is the true meaning of historical thinking? 

Finally, are the youngsters who adhere to left and progressive values and insist  upon a better, more diverse and anti racist future willing to admit that there are a few Black slaves under the monopoly board? I ask because to date, not one Left or Progressive voice has come forward to state that this Mural is all about Black slavery and capitalists.

The PA’s ‘Counter-Proposal’ Facilitates Its Colonial Collaboration with Israel

June 16, 2020

Palestinian PM Mohammad Shtayyeh . (Photo: via Facebook)

By Ramona Wadi

Further proof that the Palestinian Authority will not attempt to safeguard what remains of Palestine, let alone insist on decolonization, is the plan submitted to the Middle East Quartet which does nothing other than confirm subjugation to the two-state compromise. Palestinian Prime Minister Mohammed Shtayyeh is reportedly calling the plan “a counter-proposal” to the US deal of the century.

Scant details are available at the moment. The PA’s proposal, however, puts forth the creation of “a sovereign Palestinian state, independent and demilitarised,” while allowing for “border modifications”.

According to a senior official of the Palestine Liberation Organisation (PLO), Wasel Abu Yousef, “No Palestinian leader can agree to the American and Israeli conditions to give up the right of return of Palestinian refugees, agree to the annexation of Jerusalem or allow Israel to annex parts of the West Bank where it has built its illegal Jewish settlements.”

However, the Palestinian leadership sees no contradiction in abiding by the earlier plans to colonize Palestine which were determined by the international community. As long as the PA remains entrenched within the two-state framework, it cannot claim that it is countering the “deal” concocted for Israel’s benefit by US President Donald Trump.

The PA has no allies in the Quartet, which consists of the UN, the EU, Russia, and the US. The US, despite departing from international consensus with its slavish gifts to Israel, is still part of the group. Trump’s plan does not truly contradict the two-state paradigm’s aims; it hastens the process to bring the international community’s intentions to fruition. From the illusion of state-building, the deal of the century moves towards eliminating the idea, which puts the Quartet’s insistence upon the two-state diplomacy on a par with Trump’s plan. The PA is acquiescing, once more, to the colonization of what remains of historic Palestine.

At a time when Palestinians need an alternative that departs from further colonization, the PA is strongly emphasizing what UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres is fond of describing as “no Plan B”. The PA is rejecting the deal of the century, as it should, to uphold a defunct imposition that actually supports Trump’s plan. Or perhaps the PA’s concept of “Plan B” is to facilitate Israeli colonization by championing the international community’s violent political blunders.

A sovereign, demilitarized Palestinian state is not politically independent but an entity which, in theory, and in fact will please Israel and the international community. The PA’s purported counter-proposal supports Israeli colonization and presents another obstacle to the legitimate anti-colonial struggle which should be guiding Palestinian politics. Palestinians have long ceased to believe that the PA’s propaganda will produce any results, yet its representatives will continue to exploit the people of Palestine to ensure that Israel can complete its colonial project.

Far from opposing Trump’s deal, the PA is entrenching its corrupt stance and strengthening the international community, at the cost of the Palestinian cause disintegrating politically on a permanent basis. If the PA’s notion of a counter-proposal is aiding the international actors to implement the final phase of the Zionist colonization process, it would do better to stop its pompous posturing and admit that it is an ally of the collective that seeks to destroy Palestine forever.

– Ramona Wadi is a staff writer for Middle East Monitor, where this article was originally published. She contributed this article to the Palestine Chronicle.

Empires and their puppets including Israel will eventually fall: “Free Gaza Movement” co-founder Greta Berlin

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June 8, 2020 – 12:45
Berlin likens the situation in the occupied Palestinian lands to South Africa under the apartheid regime which will finally be a country for all citizens including Jews, Christians, and Muslims.
 “This kind of situation, like its predecessor in South Africa, will eventually fall apart, and the country will end up being a country for all citizens, Jews/Christians/Muslims,” Berlin, an author and activist, tells the Tehran Times in an exclusive interview:  
This is the text of the interview:
1: Madame Greta Berlin, please tell us what Israel has achieved after 72 years since its establishment. Has it succeeded to win legitimacy?
 A: Israel has achieved what all white/colonial/racist entities have achieved; subjugating, terrorizing, marginalizing, and stealing from the indigenous population to make an illicit country. It’s no different than the U.S. or Canada or South Africa or Australia. 
Israel has the biggest gorilla in the room on its side and that’s the U.S.It’s gotten its legitimacy from the very countries who have done the same thing to a population that was already there and perceived as, somehow, being “less human” than the invaders. After 72 years, it’s only legitimate claim to the land of Palestine has been through force, and all empires and their puppets eventually fall. Israel will as well.  
2: How do you analyze the situation inside Israel?
 A: There are three strata inside Israel; Ashkenazi Jews, the white Jews from Europe/Russia, and the U.S. who control power, politics, and money. The second tier is the Sephardic or Arab Jews who were often forced to immigrate to Israel immediately after Israel was founded on the backs of the Palestinians. Once the European Jews drove out 750,000 Palestinians, they needed workers to come and settle in the land they stole. What better place to find them than the Arab Jews of the Middle East and North Africa? If they didn’t want to come peacefully, Mossad made sure they changed their minds. 
After arriving in Israel, they even made up a name for themselves… Mizrahi… so they didn’t have to be called Arab Jews. They are becoming the largest segment of the population, but they have little power. You’ll often see them as members of the IOF, subjugating the third tier in Israel; the Palestinians, who have no power whether they are Israeli citizens or living in the Bantustans of the occupied West Bank and Gaza. 
Americans are beginning to wake up to the terrorism of the Israeli occupation This kind of situation, like its predecessor in South Africa, will eventually fall apart, and the country will end up being a country for all citizens, Jews/Christians/Muslims. 
 3: Israel plans to annex parts of the West Bank, and Netanyahu and opposition leader Benny Gantz are unanimous in this move. Netanyahu has confidently said that annexation will take place within “a few months,” or before the American presidential election in November. What has made Israel behave so unashamedly and intransigently? Don’t you think that an impotent international community or inaction by international bodies have made Tel Aviv so emboldened?
 A: Israel has the biggest gorilla in the room on its side and that’s the U.S. It makes no difference who is President in the U.S., Israel controls Congress, and most politicians will bow to its demands. However, watching what is happening in the U.S., everything is going to change over the next few years, as China emerges triumphant and the U.S. becomes another failed empire like Britain and France. 
Personally, I’m all for a one-state solution and have been for decades. And the sooner, the better for everyone living there. Palestinians already outnumber Jews, and those demographics are only going to improve for Palestinians, both Christian and Muslim.  
 4: You are internationally famous for advocating “justice” for Palestinians since early 1960. What prompted you to highlight the sufferings of the Palestinians?
 A: While in graduate school in 1963, I met and married a Palestinian and had two Palestinian/American children who couldn’t return to Safad, the city where their father was raised, while a Jew from New York City could immigrate there with no other credentials except religion. 
That sense of injustice has challenged me since then. The most outspoken advocate for the rights of marginalized people like Palestinians are often the people who learned the truth after being lied to as children. Like many Americans, I grew up thinking Israel was the victim and Jews had the right to settle in the Holy Land. When I met my husband, and he began telling me the truth of the violent takeover of his land by European terrorist Jews, I became an advocate for justice in Palestine for life.  
 5: You were a co-founder of the Free Gaza Movement and among those brave persons who broke the Gaza siege. Can you please explain your experiences and reactions?
 A: This is such a long story, encompassing two years of planning, buying the boats, sailing to Gaza and so much pain, laughter and delight at finally getting there. It’s a book and a movie and a webinar already. The best way of describing our journey to Gaza is to provide people with these three links.
 6: The U.S. has been blindly defending the illegal behavior of Israel toward Palestinians over the past seven decades. How can such support be justified by a country which proclaims leadership of the free world and defender of democracy and human rights?
 A: The U.S. has never been a defender of democracy and human rights. The country was founded on the genocide of the native population and got rich on the back of slavery. It has had, however, one of the most brilliant PR campaigns of any country in the world. Israel tries to emulate it with many of the same catchphrases such as, “the only democracy in the Middle East.” That’s as big a lie as the U.S. saying it stands for human rights.
However, there is a difference between government propaganda and the citizens of the U.S. Americans, once they wake up, are among the most outstanding advocates for justice for people seeking equal rights, and have put their lives on the line, from the martyrs of the civil rights movement, https://www.splcenter.org/what-we-do/civil-rights-memorial/civil-rights-martyrs
to Rachel Corrie in Palestine. They are the one bright and hopeful beacons of light in the U.S., especially this younger generation. I have great hopes they will become like many of us out of the 1960s, advocates for a better world. 
 7: How is it possible that successive Congresses and to a lesser extent administrations remain so biased in favor of Israel? Does it show that the American people who vote for their representatives are indifferent or ignorant toward the situation of the Palestinians?
A: Bribery, Blackmail, and Benjamins. 
It is true, however, that Americans are beginning to wake up to the terrorism of the Israeli occupation. But to be honest, Americans can barely make it from one paycheck to the next and are overwhelmed with problems in their own back yards. 
And the country is huge, with 331 million people, only 20% who even own a passport. Very few of us travel outside the Northern Hemisphere. America and much of its population are isolated and not very well-educated about other countries.  
 8: And, why anybody who opposes the stealing of the Palestinian lands or criticizes suppression of Palestinians is easily being accused of ant-Semite?
 A: It’s become a badge of honor to be called anti-Semitic. Nelson Mandela, Desmond Tutu, Jimmy Carter, Stephen Hawking, Roger Waters have all been called anti-Semites. I’m proud to be in their company.

Imam Khamenei: There Is No Crime Equivalent to the Theft of Palestine, ’Israel’ to Be Uprooted

Imam Khamenei: There Is No Crime Equivalent to the Theft of Palestine, ’Israel’ to Be Uprooted

By Staff

Leader of the Islamic Revolution His Eminence Imam Sayyed Ali Khamenei marked International al-Quds Day this year by referring to it as a smart announcement from late Imam Khomeini with smart innovation, which came to link Muslims with Palestine.

Imam Khamenei delivered the Quds Day Sermon with a plate behind him that read “We Will Pray in al-Quds”.

His Eminence urged the confrontation of the absenteeism of the Palestinian issue, which is woven by the agents of political and cultural enemies of the Islamic countries.

“In the recent ages, there is no crime that is equivalent to the theft of Palestine and the cultivation of the cancerous Zionist gland in it,” Imam Khamenei pointed out, adding that the main criminal in the tragedy of Palestine is the policy of western countries and the division of lands under the Ottoman government.

After World War II, Western countries took advantage of the regional countries’ negligence to declare the Zionist ‘state’, Imam Khamenei said, noting that “the main goal of Westerners and Jewish cartels in creating the Zionist entity was to build a base for their presence and influence.”

“Unfortunately, most Arab countries, that had shown resistance to the Zionist entity, began to gradually surrender. After their jihadist operations, the Palestinian fighting factions have followed a disappointing approach of negotiating with the occupier,” His Eminence underscored.

With the emergence of the resistance front, Imam Khamenei highlighted that the obstacles facing the Zionist entity became harder and harder, stressing that the Zionists and the global Arrogance are seeking to marginalize the Palestinian cause.

He noted, however, that the struggle for Palestine is a jihad for the sake of God and an Islamic obligation, then slammed that action of occupying a country and committing such crimes against its people for decades as being, in fact, a new record of barbarism in human history.

Imam Khamenei further said that negotiations with America and other western governments, and also negotiations with useless international groups, were bitter and unsuccessful experiences for Palestine.

Yasser Arafat's Speech at the UN General Assembly Olive Branch ...

Holding out an olive branch at the United Nations General Assembly had no result other than the injurious Oslo Accords, and it led to the eye-opening fate of Yasser Arafat, Imam Khamenei said.

His Eminence also noted that the Zionist regime will encounter even more problems in the future, God willing.

He further lashed out at human rights defenders, considering that “The slogan for defending the rights of women and children in international forums does not include defending the rights of women and children in Yemen and Palestine.”

His Eminence then asked: Who is responsible for all this blood that has been unlawfully shed in Afghanistan, Palestine, Yemen, Libya, Syria and other countries?

Praising the Islamic Resistance movements, Imam Khamenei said:

“The emergence of the faithful, young, self-sacrificing force of Hezbollah in Lebanon and the formation of Hamas and Islamic Jihad in Palestine unsettled and alarmed the Zionist ringleaders and the US.”

“The resistance front is moving with increasing power and hope, and it marches on towards attracting increasing elements of power,” he stressed.

On the other side, Imam Khamenei labelled the opposing front of oppression, unbelief and arrogance as being more hollow, hopeless and powerless.

Imam Khamenei also touched upon the struggle to liberate Palestine, saying it is Jihad in the way of God, and it is an obligation and an Islamic goal.

Imam Khamenei then warned those who consider the concessions made by a few Palestinian elements or rulers of a few Arab countries as a license to sidestep this Islamic and human issue, telling them that they are making a grave mistake.

“The aim of this struggle is the liberation of all the Palestinian lands – from the river to the sea – and the return of all Palestinians to their homeland,” Imam Khamenei emphasized.

His Eminence also lashed out at the world, which is today counting every victim of the coronavirus across the globe, but nobody of them has asked who is responsible for the hundreds of thousands of martyrdoms where America and Europe have waged wars.

Hamas and Islamic Jihad in Palestine and Hezbollah in Lebanon have been a proof for everyone, Imam Khamenei stated, stressing that the world has not forgotten and will not forget the day when the Zionist army broke through the Lebanese borders and marched till Beirut or the day when a criminal murderer named Ariel Sharon caused a bloodbath in Sabra and Shatila.

The “Israeli” army, which was pounded by Hezbollah, had no choice but to retreat from the borders of Lebanon and beg for a truce after sustaining heavy casualties and admitting defeat, Imam Khamenei said.

Meanwhile, “the European government, which should be eternally ashamed for selling chemical agents to the regime of Saddam Hussein, designate the devoted Hezbollah as illegal.”

“Illegal is a regime like the US that creates Daesh and a regime like the European governments whose chemical agents caused the death of thousands in Iran and Iraq,” Imam Khamenei stressed.

“My final word is that Palestine belongs to the Palestinians; therefore, it should be run as they wish,” Imam Khamenei concluded.

His Eminence, on this day, said he would like to remember the martyrs of Quds Sheikh Ahmad Yassin, Fathi Shaqaqi, Sayyed Abbas al-Moussawi, Martyr Soleimani, and also the great Iraqi Mujahid Martyr Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis.

The “Zionist Virus” and the Future of Palestine

New York Governor Cuomo, the Virus, the Nakba and Me

By Rima Najjar

Global Research, May 13, 2020

To me, an American-Palestinian, the world tainted by the corona virus is analogous to Israel tainted by the evil it contains.

Every day for the past few days, I have been listening to New York Governor Cuomo give his daily briefing on the virus. His words resonate with me eerily transforming themselves to advice on how to handle Israel’s cruel manifestation in Palestine as a Zionist Jewish apartheid colonial state. As talk of “re-opening” the New York increases in volume, so does my feverish imagination.

For those who don’t know, the Arabic word “Fateh” [فتح], the name of the Palestinian National Liberation Movement, which is the political bloc now dominating the Palestinian Authority in the occupied West Bank, means “opening”. It also carries the meaning of “conquering”. What’s more, “Fateh” and “key” [مفتاح], that profoundly indicative word of Palestinian longing for return, have the same linguistic root in Arabic. Hence, all these unbidden associations in my mind as I listen to Cuomo.

Every day, I wait for Cuomo’s briefing impatiently and watch while perched, tense and hyper-alert, at the edge of my seat, mesmerized by the shifting lines of his charts that, I swear, often morph into the outline of the map of Palestine.

My mind automatically sucks in Cuomo’s words and echoes them back at the TV in an altered form. I am Muslim, but the dynamic gripping me is one akin to the relationship between a pastor and his congregation at a black church. Cuomo calls and I respond, sometimes aloud. I hold back from hollering and shouting at his image, so as not to scare my family.

I take in every word of his sane, hopeful message — facts, not “facts on the ground”; science, not myths; let’s learn from our mistakes. Yes!

I translate his sentences into something else, like this: After decades of land theft, when will Palestinians be finally in control of their destiny and not subject to the whims of Israel and the international community? You tell me how Israel behaves today; I will tell you how Palestinians will be resisting a year from now.

The Zionist virus that is the Jewish state of Israel has yet to be stamped out. Hot-spot outbreaks have been with us since the Nakba of 1948. Currently, they are in the form of Israel’s horrifying annexation of parts of the West Bank, preying on the most vulnerable of peoples. We need to look for solutions that make things better for the Palestinian people. We need to reimagine the status quo and pose such a solution.

“In the first phase, we had to figure out what we are dealing with because we had no idea.” Yes, we had no idea — just intimations of unbelievable cruelty and diabolical greed! In 1947–48, we really had little idea. Remember, Palestine was 80% agrarian then — not the sophisticated community of Basle, Switzerland, where the plot for our dispossession was hatched at the First Zionist Conference in 1897.

“In the first phase, stabilize, control the damage,” says Cuomo. It turns out the key (here is that word again!) is information.

“I worked hard every day to make sure they knew the facts. ‘Trust the people’ — Lincoln, right? An informed public will keep this country safe. True, and that’s exactly what happened here,” Cuomo continues.

Funny Cuomo should say that, because, just the other day, a Palestinian friend on Facebook, Imad Jibawi, was saying something similar. He was commenting on a Zoom discussion I had posted titled “What do we do now?” conducted by Hani al-Masri, Director General of Masarat — The Palestinian Center for Policy Research & Strategic Studies (Masri is also a Policy Advisor for Al-Shabaka).

Imad Jibawi wondered:

“What is it that would drive the Palestinian people to the streets to protest by the thousands? Is it the annexation of Jerusalem? No; is it annexation of the Jordan Valley? No; is it Israel’s new settlements, then? No.

Why is that so?

I think the answer is in the question: Who is it mainly that we expect to take to the streets? They are those who are primarily under 30 — i.e., the Oslo generation.

These Palestinians were born and brought up in the reality of the Palestinian Authority, a government, ministries, VIPs, jobs, loans, etc.

[Preserving that] has been the national project for which our people sacrificed for years. People’s very livelihoods are now the red lines, holding them back. Their concerns are the teachers’ movement, the social security movement, the “we want to live” movement.

The question that concerns the political class as a whole is this: What next? What to do? The answer is: We start with our ABCs all over again. The first lesson is: Who are the Palestinians? What are the borders of the homeland of Palestine? The second lesson is: Who is our enemy? And what do we want?

Wanted: a new national awareness ….” [my translation from Arabic]

But then, as I continued to listen to Cuomo, I realized that, even though he and Jibawi are appealing to people to act collectively in their best interests by looking to themselves, rather than to their governments, there is a fundamental difference.

Cuomo is invoking security of health, family and livelihood as a raison d’etre for a certain set of collective behaviors, whereas what Jibawi is pushing for, necessarily given the Palestinian condition, is a revolutionary national consciousness that calls for a sacrifice of the very same things Cuomo is protecting for New Yorkers.

To Jibawi, the ideal of home and hearth (job security, health care, education, etc., as provided currently by the Palestinian Authority and the Oslo regime) must be superseded by the ideal of liberty, justice and equality for a people under occupation, who have escaped Israel’s genocide so far, but who continue to be dispossessed, brutally subjugated and oppressed by a vicious, powerful judeo-fascist entity and its allies.

Cuomo says,

“I don’t know when government became so political. It all became about rhetoric rather than actual competence, but it happened somewhere along the way that government could not handle the situation. People had to get engaged; people had to be informed and that’s the new thing I did. They got engaged because it mattered — this is not an abstract issue we are talking about people’s lives and people’s health and the health of their children.”

They’ll get engaged, because it matters. For both Palestinians and New Yorkers, these are not abstract issues. Far from it. In our case, all you have to do to realize the concreteness is to tune in to the daily news of thievery and savagery in their myriad forms the Israeli regime inflicts on the Palestinian people.

Many ask, if not the Palestinian Authority, if not the status quo of self-government for the Palestinians in the West Bank and Gaza, what then? My answer is this: First, hard as it is for many, we must find the will and steadfastness to effect an insurrection to continue the interrupted Palestinian revolution, returning to the political and community structures that sprang up to further the first intifada. We need a supreme manifestation of popular resistance against both the Palestinian Authority and Israel in all of occupied Palestine from the river to the sea with aid from Palestinians in exile.

Cuomo is right! “No government can impose any of these things … Stay in the house. Close every school. Close every bus. State government can’t enforce that. People had to understand the facts people had to engage in governing themselves in a way they hadn’t in decades … We are tough, smart, united, disciplined and loving” — even if our governments aren’t. We are samidoun.

Amen to that! Hallelujah!
*

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Rima Najjar is a Palestinian whose father’s side of the family comes from the forcibly depopulated village of Lifta on the western outskirts of Jerusalem. She is an activist, researcher and retired professor of English literature, Al-Quds University, occupied West Bank.

All images in this article are from the authorThe original source of this article is Global ResearchCopyright © Rima Najjar, Global Research, 2020

بين أم عطا المقاومة.. وأم هارون اليهوديّة القدس عاصمتنا الأبديّة

سماهر الخطيب

تتفقّد منزلها بين الحينة والأخرى تستدين المال كي تدفع ما يطالبها به الاحتلال من ضرائب قد استوجبت على منزل «لا يساوي شيئاً» وتقف أمام الباب شامخةً رافضة لعرض السمسار الذي قدّمه لها لبيع هذا المنزل الصغير وتنعته بكلمات لا تحرّك به ضميره الغائب ليترنّح قائلاً «بيعيه اليوم أفضل من أن تخسريه غداً وتصبحين بلا منزل ولا مال»؛ تزداد إصرارً بالرفض.. وتهدي المفتاح لذاك الطالب الكهنوتي ليتذكّر بأن «له بيت في القدس» ولتردّ له شيئاً من معروفه لها..

حدث ذلك مع أم عطا في أربعينيات القرن الماضي هذا ما عرضه عنها مسلسل درامي يحمل اسم «حارس القدس».

وفي المقلب الثاني وفي الحقبة ذاتها تسرد «أم هارون»، قصتها كطبيبة يهودية واجهت تحديات كثيرة مع أسرتها والجالية اليهودية في دول الخليج، في دليل فاضح على تمهيد الإعلام «السعودي» للتطبيع مع «إسرائيل»..

وشتان ما بين أم عطا وأم هارون ليست حبكة درامية تتجلى وإنما قضية راسخة لا يمكن أن نغفل عنها.

فنحن من تربّى على أناشيد الشاعر السوري سليمان العيسى والذي رددنا كلماته إلى اليوم..

فلسطين داري ودرب انتصاري

تظل بلادي هوى في فؤادي

ولحناً أبياً على شفتيا

وجوه غريبة بأرضي السليبة

تبيع ثماري وتحتلّ داري

وأعرف دربي ويرجع شعبي

إلى بيت جدّي إلى دفء مهدي

فلسطين داري ودرب انتصاري

هذه الكلمات شكلت بدايات الوعي لدى كل طفل عن القضية الفلسطينية وحفرت في ذاكرة أجيال من الأطفال على امتداد المعمورة ليس من النهر إلى البحر فحسب، إنما من المحيط إلى الخليج فهذه الأرض لنا وفي تلافيف العقل قد حيكت بساتينها وقراها وحجارها وشطآنها.

هي بلادنا وأرضنا لا تطبيع إعلامي يمكن أن يمحو الحقيقة ولا تطبيل وتزمير «عربي» خانع كخنوع بعض حكام العرب الذين باتوا دمية بأيدي ذاك الصهيوني الغاشم بلا حياء يطبلون له ويزمرون..

وكما يُقال في المثل الشعبي «فوق الموتة عصّة قبر» فبينما تعاني أرضنا المحتلة ما تعانيه من تدنيس المحتل وتعذيب لشعبنا وحاصرته والبحث عن شتى السبل لإخضاعه والعالم أجمع أصم أبكم فهو لا يفقه ومنشغل بأزمة الفيروس المستجد القاتل لجنسنا البشري يعاني شعبنا في فلسطين من فيروس من نوع أخطر وأعتى وأشرس، فيروس صهيوني استشرى بأرضنا وشعبنا يجتمع القادة العرب في جامعتهم ليدينوا ضمّ الضفة الغربية لدولة الاحتلال «إدانة» فقط هذا ما استحصلنا عليه من «سموّهِم المعظم» يمنّون علينا بها.

وفي كل مرة يجتمعون فيها منذ تاسيس جماعتهم المفرقة، ومن قبلها منذ عهد «الشريف حسين» ومراسلاته مع مكماهون إلى اليوم وفي كل كلمة يتفوّهون بها نخسر المزيد من أرضنا المقدسة ودولة الاحتلال لا تترك فرصة إلا وتبخ في كل إناء سُمّها.

وها هي اليوم تستغل انشغال العالم أجمع بمواجهة الفيروس كوفيد– 19 لتسعى بخبث نحو نسج مكائدها..

فجاء إعلان ضمّ الضفة الغربية تزامناً مع ظهور هذا الفيروس المستجد دونما مغيث لشعبنا الفلسطيني سوى مَن كان ضميره حاضراً مقاوماً بالقول والفعل، بالكلمة والسلاح.

وإذا عدنا للوراء في الأشهر القليلة المنصرمة فإننا سنجد الكثير من الانحياز الغربي للكيان الصهيوني على أرضنا، بل نجد أن ستار وغطاء السياسة الغربية والأميركية تجاه دولة الاحتلال قد تكشّف وظهر ما كانت تكنّه من نيات في طياتها العنصرية والاستعمارية.

منذ نقل السفارة الأميركية إلى مدينة القدس وإعلانها عاصمة لدولة الاحتلال مروراً بانسحاب أميركا من مجلس حقوق الإنسان لكونه بحسب زعمها يظلم حقوق الشعب الصهيوني، وصولاً إلى التصديق على قانون يهودية دولة «إسرائيل» وصولاً إلى الإعلان المزعوم بضم الجولان السوري المحتل كل ذلك يصب في مصلحة الكيان الصهيوني وراعيته أميركا، فما جاء به ذاك المدير الترامبي وصهره من نداءات لـ»صفقة القرن» قد بدأ يحيك فصولها بدقة متناهية منذ تسلمه دفة القيادة من دون أن يرفّ لهما جفن.

فالدول العربية منشغلة وكذلك الأوروبية والآسيوية لا مجال الآن للالتفات إلى ما يعنيه قرار الأمم المتحدة 181 بشأن القدس ولا حتى القرار 194 بشأن حق العودة ولا حتى هل سيكون قرار إنشاء الأونروا أو الانسحاب منها متاحاً للنقاش والتي أنشئت بقرار من الأمم المتحدة والتي من المفترض أن تكون أعلى سلطة عالميّة لولا تحكم الولايات المتحدة الأميركية بقراراتها وانتهاكها مبادئ الشرعة الدولية.

في القرارين الأميركيين اللذين أظهرا صهيونية ترامب أكثر من الصهاينة أنفسهم يفسران بعضهما البعض، فإذا ما أسقط حق العودة فليس للأونروا عمل بعد اليوم، ليصبح جميع اللاجئين الفلسطينيين مواطنين داخل الدول التي احتوتهم.

وهو ما علا الصوت بتوطين اللاجئين، ولم يكن الهدف منه اللاجئين السوريين إنما الفلسطينيون هم من كانوا مقصودين بالتوطين ليسقط حق العودة وتنسحب الولايات المتحدة من تمويل الأونروا لانتفاء الحاجة إليها ويتوافق ذلك مع يهودية «إسرائيل».

أما بالنسبة للضفة الغربية والقطاع بعد أن حلّ ترامب وصهره قضية القدس فإنّ لهما تتمة في السيناريو الأميركي المعنون بصفقة القرن.

فالكيان الصهيوني لن يكلّ أو يملّ من دون أن يضمهما أو يضم أحدهما لحكمه الاستعماري. وليتم ذلك أولاً الخضوع والاعتراف بيهودية هذا الكيان، ولمن رفض فله سيناء. تلك تتمة السيناريو الخبيث فلم يعد خافياً على أحد تلك القمة السرية في البحر الميت من دهاء بين الرئيس المصري والأردني ورئيس وزراء العدو لتتدافع بعدها اللقاءات وحبك المؤامرات ونقل ما صنعوه من ممثلين وبدعتهم الإرهابية إلى سيناء وإفراغها من سكانها الأصليين ريثما يحين الموعد «توطين الفلسطينيين».

ولا ننسى أزمة تيران وصنافير أحد فصول «صفقة القرن»، وليس الهدف من جعلها سعوديّة إلا إرضاء للكيان الصهيوني، لما تشكله هاتان الجزيرتان من رمزية النصر المصري والفشل الصهيوني إبان عدوان 1967 على مصر.

فكانت تنطلق منها القوات البحرية باتجاه الأراضي المحتلة هذا من جهة، ومن جهة أخرى ربما يريد العدو تحويل المياه في البحر الأحمر إلى مياه دولية فيستطيع العبور فيها والتجارة دونما تعليق يذكر.

وبعد سلسلة قرارات أميركية وصهيونية اتخذت وسط صمت دولي وتراخٍ عربي، لم يعد لدولة الاحتلال ذاك الحلم بالتوسّع وخوض الحروب طالما أنها توسعت في «مجالها الحيوي» فلِمَ تخسر عسكرياً وهي تكسب اقتصادياً وثقافياً وفنياً واجتماعياً..! بعد حملة التطبيع و»أم هارون» التي جالت معظم البلاد العربية من خليجها إلى مغربها، وهو ما أشار إليه بنيامين نتنياهو في مكان تحت الشمس بإنشاء حلف اقتصادي تقوده دولة الاحتلال..

إنما على الساحة السورية، ما سيسقط هذا المشروع الأميركي الصهيوني. فالحرب في الشام أصبحت شبه منتهية بنصر الدولة السورية وحلفائها على الإرهاب. وفي العراق كذلك كما في لبنان وفي الداخل الفلسطيني تبقى المقاومة عتية عن القبول بالانصياع لقرارات أميركية ووجود لكيان غاصب. وفي كل بلد لا تزال فيه أنفاس المقاومة فالشعوب تبقى صاحبة القرار لو بعد حين.

ولا نصرَ يمكن أن يتحقق إنْ لم يروَ بتكاتف الشعب والجيش والمقاومة لتنعكس قوة تنبثق من رحم عقيدة متأصّلة في وجدان أبنائها.

وحارس القدس في كل ضمير مقاوم موجود ليس بدعة وليس ذكرى بل ذاكرة تدق بأننا سنعود.. متجاوزين ما اصطنعوه من حدود سياسية، لتظهر الوحدة الجغرافية، فيجب أن نضطلع بمسؤولية قضايانا القومية لنصنع النصر وأن نقرّر مصيرنا بإرادتنا نحن.

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Land Day 2020 in the Time of the Coronavirus

March 30, 2020

Samidoun issued a call for a rally in New York City to commemorate the second anniversary of the Great Return March in Gaza, that has been transformed into a virtual event. (Photo: via Samidoun)

By Benay Blend

On March 3, 2020, Samidoun: Palestinian Prisoner Network issued a call for a rally in New York City to commemorate the second anniversary of the Great Return March in Gaza.

Plans were to hold the march in conjunction with the Palestine Writes Festival (March 27-29), but due to the Coronavirus the literary gathering has been postponed, and the march, like so many other events, has been transformed into a virtual event.

Two years ago, on March 30, 2018, Palestinians in the besieged Gaza Strip launched the Great March of Return in order to demand an end to Israel’s closure of the Gaza Strip and the right of return for millions of Palestinian ethnically cleansed from their homes.

Despite Israel’s ongoing use of live ammunition, tear gas and rubber-coated steel bullets, Palestinians continue to use every legitimate means possible—including armed resistance, general strikes, Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) campaigns, and the Great Return March—in their struggle for national liberation.

This year, in the words of Tamara Nassar: “Palestinians face two enemies: occupation and pandemic.” As Nassar notes, their struggle against the virus entails the same precautions as the rest of the world, while, in addition, Israel “continues to demolish structures, conduct night raids, arbitrarily arrest children and routinely harass civilians.”

For example, palinfo.com reports that on March 27, 2020, Israeli occupation soldiers invaded several areas in the West Bank city of al-Khalil where they “deliberately spat” at Palestinian homes and cars. After their departure, Palestinian workers sterilized the places where the soldiers spat in order to reduce the chances of infection.

Moreover, while the West Bank and Jerusalem are quarantined, the Palestinian Center for Human Rights last week recorded that Israelis undertook 59 home raids and 51 arrests.

All of these atrocities and more are unique to the Occupation. Nevertheless, there is a larger framework that makes it possible to place the Palestinian struggle within a broader context. As stated in Samidoun’s decision to transform the various rallies in support of Gaza into virtual events:

“Protecting each other’s health at this critical time is essential to continuing the struggle against the forces of oppression and exploitation that deny people health care or price it with a profit motive.”

For many in the labor force, this is not an option. In countries under the rule of right-wing capitalist leaders, workers are being told that they have a choice between staying home without a paycheck, thus placing their families under economic hardship, or going to workplaces that put them at risk for serious infection with the virus.

For example, the lieutenant governor of Texas Dan Patrick suggested that older Americans would surely sacrifice themselves in return for guaranteeing their grandchildren’s economic future. He also advocated that the country should be opened up for business in weeks, not months as health professionals propose.

President Donald Trump’s call to open up the country for business by Easter echoed a similar prioritizing of business and mega-church religious leaders over the lives of workers and their families.

In Palestine, too, Akram Al-Waara reports that workers face a similar dilemma, though aggravated by realities of the Occupation. For those working in Israel, new restrictions related to the Coronavirus mean that they have a choice between sacrificing a “much-needed income,” or taking the chance of being apart from their families for months.

As the virus continued to extend across Israel and the West Bank, Israeli Defense Minister Naftali Bennet, who had already closed the borders around Bethlehem, announced that only workers in “essential” fields—construction, healthcare, and agriculture—would be granted entry; everyone else would be quarantined at home.

“While the Israelis are staying inside their homes, they are putting us to work so that things don’t collapse,” Kareem, a Palestinian construction worker, told Middle East Eye, all “for the sake of saving their economy.” Though the situation is different within the context of the Occupation, the paradigm of profit over people is inevitable wherever there is a capitalist economy. In New Mexico, where I live, Indian reservations make up expendable labor pools, much like Palestinians are today.

In the preface to Simon Ortiz’s Fight Back: For the Sake of the People, For the Sake of the Land (1980), historian Roxanne Dunbar-Ortiz explains that “Indians have a basis of unity with non-Indians,” and it is there, “in the fields and on the picket line, that they may see through the smokescreen of racism” to pinpoint the real cause of their oppression: capitalism.

She continues:

“For the Indian and non-Indian worker in the United States and most of the hemisphere, their exploited labor provides the profits for those who claim to own the land and the factories and have armies to back their claim.”

Dunbar-Ortiz’s analysis is more important today than ever as we see workers around the world faced with the choice of watching their families starve without a paycheck or bringing sickness home from their workplace.

As Italians called for a General Strike on March 25 under the slogan “Our lives are worth more than your profits,” and requests for a nationwide rent strike erupt in the U.S., it seems an excellent time for international solidarity among the working class, Indigenous, immigrants and all other oppressed groups of people.

Meanwhile, news sources such as NPR are using fears over the Coronavirus to air the following message: “Israelis and Palestinians now have a common enemy: the Coronavirus.”

Described by +972 Magazine as “ ‘colonization of the mind,’ whereby the oppressed subject comes to believe that the oppressor’s reality is the only ‘normal’ reality that must be subscribed to, and that the oppression is a fact of life that must be coped with,” “normalization” never sleeps. Neither does colonialist oppression, even during the height of the pandemic.

As Akram Al-Waara relates, Palestinian workers in Israel who are suspected to have the virus are “dumped…like trash” near the most convenient checkpoints. “This is the true face of the Israeli occupation,” Ibrahim Abu Safiya told Middle East Eye. “They kill us on a daily basis, so this isn’t any different for them.” No cooperation here over a “common enemy to battle,” as Daniel Estrin of NPR termed it, only the continuation of the Palestinian struggle for liberation.

In Israel, the United States, and around the world, exploited groups of people are expendable, thrown away when no longer serving the needs of the elite. As a community activist and scholar Oliver Baker wrote on Facebook, this is how “whiteness in capitalism works. It expects you to consent to give it your labor and enforce empire. But it cares nothing about your life. It’s time to betray it, or if not, you’ll be in the way of people trying to free themselves from these conditions, and you don’t want to be in the way of that right now.”

Nevertheless, the message of Land Day 2020 remains one of sumoud (steadfastness) and creativity, as Palestinians from Gaza to Bethlehem mobilize collectively to fight the virus.

“If we can overcome Coronavirus, we can overcome the occupation,” writes Suha Arraf, a sentiment echoed by Lucy Thaljiyeh, a city council member and feminist political activist: “The solidarity between people has returned, the solidarity we had during the First Intifada which somehow disappeared in the Second Intifada. We are together once again, trapped; we are taking care of each other.”

As support gathers around the world in the coming days for Land Day 2020, it seems fitting to end with the words of Palestinian American activist and scholar Steven Salaita:

“I find myself thinking about the Gaza Strip, Attica, Wounded Knee, the Warsaw Ghetto, not because our situation is analogous, and not because suffering must be exceptional to have meaning, but because they’re examples of incredible strength amid hardship and insecurity and therefore provide a radical vision of fortitude in which victims of power, not its beneficiaries, serve as inspiration for survival.”

– Benay Blend earned her doctorate in American Studies from the University of New Mexico. Her scholarly works include Douglas Vakoch and Sam Mickey, Eds. (2017), “’Neither Homeland Nor Exile are Words’: ‘Situated Knowledge’ in the Works of Palestinian and Native American Writers”. She contributed this article to The Palestine Chronicle.

Sayyed Nasrallah Calls for Comprehensive Confrontation with The Arrogant Trump Administration: Boycott American Goods

Sayyed Nasrallah Calls for Comprehensive Confrontation with The Arrogant Trump Administration: Boycott American Goods

Zeinab Essa

Hezbollah Secretary General His Eminence Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah delivered on Sunday a speech in which he tackled various regional and internal topics.

Addressing tens of thousands of Resistance lovers commemorating Hezbollah Martyr Leaders and 40 days on the martyrdom of Lieutenant General Qassem Soleimani and Abu Mahdi Al Muhandis, Sayyed Nasrallah congratulated the Iranian people on the 41 anniversary of the Islamic Revolution. “The revolution in Iran has remained strong despite all wars and sieges, thanks to the presence of its people in all fields and all stages.”

His Eminence further recalled that “The enemy was betting on the collapse of the regime in Iran.”

Congratulating the oppressed Bahraini people on the ninth anniversary of the revolution, led by loyal scholars, particularly Sheikh Isa Qassem; His Eminence highlighted that “The Bahraini people are fighting today to restore Bahrain to its natural position in the nation, after its rulers has turned it into a base for normalization and conspiracy on the Palestinian cause.”

“The martyrs Soleimani, Al-Muhandis, Sayyed Abbas al-Moussawi, Sheikh Ragheb Harb and Hajj Imad Mughniyeh shared common features. They had faith, loyalty and honesty and they were loved by the people. One of the main traits of the martyr leaders is that they were responsible, along with the constant willingness to sacrifice without limits,” he added.

Urging people to read Martyr Soleimani’s will, Sayyed Nasrallah underscored that “When we read the will of martyr Soleimani, we find that we are in front of a knowledgeable Mujahid commander who was concerned for his country and people.”

“The resistance is neither based on speeches nor on words that are disconnected from reality. These leaders embodied it on the ground,” His Eminence stated, noting that “With the martyrdom of each of our leaders, we move from one phase into another and this is the case with the martyrdom of Hajj Qassem”

On this level, the Resistance Leader confirmed that “[US President Donald] Trump’s administration recently committed two horrible crimes resembled by the uncovered assassination of Martyrs Soleimani and Al-Muhandis as well as announcing the so-called ‘Deal of the Century’.”

“Trump’s unilateral ‘Deal of century’ isn’t a deal but an “Israeli” scheme to end the Palestinian cause,” he said, pointing out that “The two crimes are in the service of American and “Israeli” hegemony, tyranny, and looting to our goods and sanctities.”

Sayyed Nasrallah further mentioned that “The US isn’t an inevitable destiny, and the American administrations have always presented schemes, but they have failed because the peoples and states decided to confront them.”

Describing the ‘Deal of Century’ as a crime committed in the White House, His Eminence hailed the fact that “There is no Palestinian group or faction that accepts to give up the Palestinian cause and Al-Quds.”

“Today, no one supports Trump’s ‘Deal of Century’. No influencing country has shown any approval of this scheme,” he clarified, lauding the Lebanese unity and solidarity in rejecting Trump’s scheme as they [the Lebanese] are aware of its danger.”

As His Eminence warned that Trump’s scheme hands the occupied Lebanese territories to “Israel” in addition to settling the refugees, Sayyed Nasrallah wondered “Who guarantees that these stances will remain the same in the future, especially if the Gulf stance changes.”

“There are Gulf countries that say that Trump’s scheme is capable of being studied, and this is how defeat and surrender begin,” he stated, pointing out that “The positions that followed Trump’s announcement of his ‘Deal of century’ were full of strong rejection.”

On another level, Sayyed Nasrallah viewed that “The new stage requires from our people in the region to go and not to escape the primary confrontation.”

“When Trump kills our leaders in a public and brutal manner, he declares war and we are still in the stage of slow response,” His Eminence declared, calling the peoples in the region to move to the main confrontation, which is inevitable, as the other party is on the offensive.

In this context, Sayyed Nasrallah said: “Our people are urged to go to the confrontation with the arrogance symbol resembled by Trump’s administration. Awareness away from fear of America and confidence in our ability are a must as the US is responsible for all “Israel’s” wars and practices.”

“We are not taking anyone into a confrontation with America,” he added, pointing out that “America has imposed a confrontation on the nation.”

Sayyed Nasrallah went on to explain that “We need a comprehensive confrontation with this brutal authoritarian monster, resembled by Trump’s arrogant administration. Daesh [Arabic Acronym for the terrorist “ISIS/ISIL” group] has taken control of provinces in Syria and Iraq, committed massacres, and the Americans are responsible for these atrocities.”

Stressing that “Boycotting US goods is painful for the Americans,” Hezbollah Secretary General wondered “Why don’t we resort to this choice?”Sayyed Nasrallah: I call on all the elites, scholars and thinkers to set programs and plans as part of a major confrontation with the American administration

“In order to impose its hegemony and plans, The US uses all available means, including proxy wars and assassinations,” he underlined, stating that “All forms of resistance are required: the legal, judicial, economic, and other levels.”

According to His Eminence, His Eminence cautioned that “The US is using the weapon of economic sanctions against people. The US supports the ongoing war against the Yemeni people to benefit economically from selling weapons to the countries of the aggression.”

In response, Sayyed Nasrallah declared that “All the peoples of the region will carry the weapons in face of the US arrogance, and America left no choice to us.”

To the Iraqi people, Sayyed Nasrallah sent a message of love and advice: “The beloved Iraqi people know Hajj Abu Mahd Al-Muhandis, who spent his life in jihad leaving his home, family and children. Abu Mahdi fought in all Iraqi provinces and carried his blood on his palm and shroud on his shoulder. The primary responsibility of the Iraqi people is preserving the Popular Mobilization Forces as well as strengthening it and its spirituality.”

On the same level, His Eminence confirmed that “Martyr Soleimani was interested in seeing the dear Iraq as capable, independent and present in the issues of the region, not isolated.”

“I tell the dear, loyal and aggrieved Iraqi people that the first responsibility for responding to the assassination of Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis and Qasem Soleimani falls on their shoulders,” He confirmed.

Regarding the current Lebanese internal situation, he cautioned that “We have a clear financial and economic crisis in Lebanon, and there is concern that this crisis will affect the security situation in Lebanon.”

Sayyed Nasrallah warned that “There is concern for the state’s health, social and development services, which will be negatively affected.”

Reiterating that “We, in Hezbollah do not fear for the future of the resistance and its men,” Hezbollah Secretary General stressed that “Our concern is for Lebanon and the Lebanese.”

“Hezbollah will not escape the responsibility,” he said, announcing that “We, in Hezbollah, do not think in a partisan way and think for ourselves. Rather, we are concerned for the people in all Lebanese regions.”

In addition, His Eminence underlined that “The financial and economic situation needs to be addressed, and we are ready to take and share the responsibility for solving the crisis.”

“We lost our dignity because we did not compliment so that we prevent the country from going into chaos and civil war,” Sayyed Nasrallah explained, warning that “We are facing a very difficult economic situation, and there is no discussion about that, but the discussion is about bankruptcy or not.”

Urging all Lebanese sides to separate the financial and economic file from the political conflict in the country and to leaving aside settling of scores, His Eminence viewed that “Naming the government as “Hezbollah’s government” harms Lebanon’s Arab and international ties.”

To the Lebanese, he said: “Help the government, because should it manage to stop the collapse, it would be offering a great service to all Lebanese and those who live in Lebanon.”

Being Ahead of Time

 BY GILAD ATZMON

By Gilad Atzmon

https://www.unz.com/

In my recent book, Being in Time, I analyse Jewish controlled opposition. I argue that some self-identified Jews end up being on both polar extremes of every debate that is even mildly relevant to Jewish existence: Those who have recently been disturbed about the Jews who are at the centre of the impeachment trial have also found that Jews hold key positions on Trump’s defense team. Those who accuse Jews of pushing immigration and multiculturalism can’t deny that Trump’s senior policy advisor on immigration is Stephen Miller and that breitbart.com was “conceived in Jerusalem.” The Palestinians’ solidarity movement is dominated by a few well organized Jewish solidarity groups that do little but divert the discourse from the Palestinian right of return and exhaust the movement in their relentless witch-hunting of truth speakers and seekers.

In Being in Time, I point out that as soon as an issue or event is identified as a potential Jewish problem, a Jewish satellite dissent emerges to ‘calm things down.’ As soon as Corbyn became the modern Amalek (‘existential threat’), Jews for Jeremywas formed to dismantle the idea that Jews hate Corbyn collectively. Those who view Capitalism as a Jewish construct are similarly reminded that Marx was also a Jew. In Being in Time I argue that none of this is necessarily conspiratorial. It is only natural for Jews to denounce the crimes that are committed on ‘their behalf’ by a state that defines itself as ‘The Jewish State.’ The same applies to Jews who are genuinely tormented by the vast over representation of Jews in some problematic spheres. Yet, the outcome of all this is potentially volatile: every crucial debate regarding the West and its future; Globalism, Neocons wars, capitalism, immigration, multiculturalism, Israel and so on, is too frequently reduced into an internal Jewish exchange.

It was therefore just a matter of time before some Jews would admit that the involvement of a few prominent Jewish celebrities in some spectacular sex crimes is becoming rather embarrassing and even dangerous for the Jews.

It seems as if Jonah Goldberg has launched the ‘Jews against pedophilia’ campaign. Today, The Jewish World Review published an article titled “French pedo flap a cautionary tale for OUR cultural aristocrats.” In the commentary, Goldberg digs into the activities of Jewish radical ideology, along with those of the notorious paedophile, Gabriel Matzneff.

Goldberg was triggered by a New York Times article that examined the rise and fall of the paedophilia devotee. Matzneff is 83, an old man now, but he has been the darling of the French literary world and media for decades: his work was supported by leading newspapers and literary publications. “He’d appear on highbrow TV shows,” Goldberg writes, where he’d “regale interviewers and audiences with the sublime pleasures of having sex with children in France and on sex tours of southeast Asia.”

In his book “Under 16 Years Old,” Matzneff wrote, “To sleep with a child, it’s a holy experience, a baptismal event, a sacred adventure.”

But the contrast Goldberg draws between Jeffrey Epstein and Matzneff is surprisingly clumsy: “The well-connected billionaire spent vast sums to keep his sexual abuses at least somewhat secret. Matzneff not only confessed to his crimes, his confessions were celebrated as literary contributions.” I feel the need to remind Goldberg that nicknaming one’s plane the “Lolita Express” is hardly an attempt to hide one’s sexual morbidity and crimes. If anything Matzneff is like Epstein in that both celebrated a peculiar sense of impunity. Needless to mention, no Jewish outlet denounced either of them or their not very secretive activities before they were caught and charged.

Jewish Radicals and the role of the Orgasm

Next comes the ‘rationalisation.’ “Matzneff was a Child of 68,” Goldberg writes, “a product of the left-wing ‘May 68’ movement that shook France in the 1960s. These radicals subscribed to the idea that anything smacking of traditionalism or bourgeois morality was backward. Conventional sexual morality was part of the same rotten edifice as imperialism and racism.”

Goldberg doesn’t approve of the ‘Jewish radicals and their ideology. He reminds us that “a few years ago, Daniel Cohn-Bendit (a.k.a. Dany le Rouge), the famous former radical and leader of the European Green movement, got in hot water for his earlier writings and statements about “erotic” encounters with 5-year-olds. He (Cohn-Bendit ) dodged major consequences by disavowing his own words, saying they were merely intended to provoke.”

Goldberg is a well-known and successful writer, he could have published his criticism of Matzneff and Jewish radicals in numerous national American news outlets but, presumably he made the decision to use a Jewish outlet. Whether intentionally or not, Goldberg provides an insight into Jewish survival strategy in general and Jewish controlled opposition in particular. Criticizing radical philosophy and the advocacy of pedophilia on ideological grounds by Jews in a Jewish media outlet conveys the image that Jews can deal with their problems. The goyim should let it go or, even better, move on.

But Goldberg’s account is either mistaken or misleading. The sex revolution that branched into advocating paedophilia wasn’t invented in 1968. Its radical Jewish roots take us back to the 1920-30s and, in particular, to the early work of Wilhelm Reich.

The Following is an excerpt from Being in Time in which I delve into Wilhelm Reich and his ‘genital utopia.’

In his 1933 work, The Mass Psychology of Fascism, Jewish Marxist and Freudian psychoanalyst Wilhelm Reich attempted to explain the striking victory of ‘reactionary’ Fascism over ‘progressive’ Communism. Reich was desperate to rescue the relevance of revolutionary Marxism. In order to do so he formed a new ‘post Marxist’ theoretical outlook to explain why the Germans of his time favoured ‘authoritarianism’ over a ‘preferable’ communist revolution.

According to Reich, the attraction of reactionary and conservative politics and the inclination towards fascism is driven by a long history of rigid, authoritarian patriarchy which affects the family, parenting, primal education and eventually, society as a whole.
Of course, the remarkable popularity of fascism in Europe could have provided the scientifically-orientated Reich with a clear refutation of Marxist working class politics, theories and predictions. After all, dialectical Marxism had failed as a social theory as well as a methodical prophecy. But for some reason, he, like many other Jewish intellectuals of his time, decided to stick with Marx. Hoping to rescue what was left of dialectical materialism, and insisting that true communist political revolution would prevail once sexual repression was overthrown, Reich synthesized Marx and Freud into a ‘Sex Revolution.’

Wilhelm Reich posited that sexual liberation on a mass scale would save Marxist dogmatism and working people as well. In chapter five of The Mass Psychology of Fascism, he declared war on the patriarchal and conservative family which he saw as being at the core of mass conservatism: “From the standpoint of social development,” Reich wrote, “the family cannot be considered the basis of the authoritarian state, only as one of the most important institutions which support it.” The traditional family is a “central reactionary germ cell, the most important place of reproduction of the reactionary and conservative individual. Being itself caused by the authoritarian system, the family becomes the most important institution for its conservation.”

In the eyes of the neo-Marxist affection, both romanticism and traditional family values were obstacles to socialist reform and Reich’s vehicle towards the new world order was … orgasm! In his 1927 study, The Function of the Orgasm, he came to the conclusion that: “there is only one thing wrong with neurotic patients: the lack of full and repeated sexual satisfaction.” In the hands of Reich, the Marx-Freud hybrid was leading to what some critical cynics dubbed “genital utopia.”

Reich believed that for women within the patriarchal society, sex was within the realm of duty and/or restricted to procreation. “The maintenance of the authoritarian family institution requires more than economic dependence of wife and children on husband and father. This dependence can be tolerated only under the condition that the consciousness of being a sexual being is extinguished as far as possible in women and children. The woman is not supposed to be a sexual being, only the producer of children.”(The Mass Psychology of Fascism, Wilhelm Reich pg 56 37. Ibid pg 56)

Within the traditional society, the woman was robbed of any libidinal consciousness: “This idealization of motherhood is essentially a means of keeping women from developing a sexual consciousness and from breaking through the barriers of sexual repression, of keeping alive their sexual anxieties and guilt feelings. The very existence of woman as a sexual being would threaten authoritarian ideology; her recognition and social affirmation would mean its collapse.” Women were mere baby factories, who had only an instrumental role because: “Imperialistic wars require that there be no rebellion in the women against the function that is imposed on them, that of being nothing but child-bearing machines.” This description of the woman and the family fits the traditional Jewish orthodox family rather better than, say, the German, French, Italian or Spanish family cell.

But Wilhelm Reich wasn’t only a dialectic social revolutionary, he was also a pragmatist. He invented the Orgone Energy Accumulator, a wooden box about the size of a telephone booth, lined with metal and insulated with steel wool. The Orgone itself was a vague concept: an esoteric energy, a universal life force that was massless yet omnipresent and promised to charge up the body with the life force that circulated in the atmosphere and which he christened “orgone energy.” His Orgone box promised to improve “orgastic potency” and, by extension, physical and mental health Thus, the newly liberated Western subject was invited to experience the true meaning of Marx and Freud through sweating towards full emancipation by means of accumulating ‘Orgone energy’ in this wooden box.

Those who watched Woody Allen’s comedy film Sleeper (1973) probably remember the Orgasmatron – the orgasm inducing machine. In Allen’s satirical take on Reich’s Orgone box, it is actually the authoritarian regime that encourages its citizens to emancipate themselves by means of their genitalia. In Allen’s prophetic movie, the orgasm, like consumerism is a reward from the oppressive regime that diverts the masses’ attention from their existential misery.

The ‘authoritarian’ Germans, both fascist and communist, quickly expelled Reich from their ranks. By 1934, even Freud didn’t want anything to do with Reich. The progressive Americans however, tolerated his ideas, at least for a while. Reich was eventually arrested and died in an American prison leaving behind some radical minds, still convinced that the Orgone box was acting as a greenhouse for cosmic, libidinal energy. Within the free-ranging pornographic realm in which we live, the universe has become an extended Orgone container: pornography is free to all; genital sex is deemed almost Victorian; heterosexuality, at a certain stage, was on the verge of becoming a marginal adventure. And yet authoritarianism hasn’t disappeared. Quite the opposite; to borrow Marx’s metaphor – it is sex and pornography rather than religion that have become the opium of the masses. And yet, this ‘progressive’ universe in which we live didn’t defeat the inclination towards violence. We are killing millions by proxy in the name of moral interventionism and Coca Cola.

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Sayyed Nasrallah: Trump’s Two Recent Crimes Usher Direct Confrontation with Resistance Forces

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Mohammad Salami

Hezbollah Secretary General Sayyed Hasan Nasrallah stressed Sunday that the United States of America has recently committed two major crimes, the assassination of the head of IRGC’s Al-Quds Force general Qasem Suleimani as well as the deputy chief of Iraq’s Hashd Shaabi Abu Mahdi Al-Muhandis and the announcement of Trump’s Mideast plan.

Sayyed Nasrallah stressed that those two crimes had ushered a direct confrontation with the axis of resistance in Lebanon, calling for forming a comprehensive (political, economical, cultural and legal) resistance front,  against the United States all over the world.

The military choice will never be abandoned, according to the Resistance Leader who pointed out that the US tyrant has not left for the regional peoples except holding guns to fight it.

Delivering a speech during Hezbollah’s “Martyrdom & Insight” Ceremony which marks the anniversary of the martyrs Sheikh Ragheb Harb, Sayyed Abbas Al-Moussawi and Hajj Imad Mughniyeh and the 40th day after the martyrdom of General Suleimani and Hajj Al-Muhandis, Sayyed Nasrallah emphasized that in this confrontation with the United States, we have to trust God’s help, keep hopeful for a bright future and challenge our fear.

Sayyed Nasrallah considered that the confrontation between the United States and the forces which reject to surrender to its will is inevitable, adding that Washington is who has led the region to this conflict, not the resistance.

All the regional peoples must be prepared for the key confrontation, according to Sayyed Nasrallah who added that Trump’s administration is the most arrogant, unjust, Satanic and corrupt in the US history.

Sayyed Nasrallah held the United States responsible for all the Zionist crimes against the Arab people “because it provides the occupation entity”, adding that Washington supports and protects the Saudi-led war on Yemen in order to sell arms for the coalition forces.

“US is responsible for the ISIL’s atrocities in Iraq and Syria. Thank God, the terrorist group was confronted and blocked on Lebanon’s border.”

Sayyed Nasrallah clarified that the US may resort to direct or proxy wars, assassinations, sanctions, and financial as well as legal pressures in order to carry out its schemes, adding that “we have to employ the same means in the comprehensive resistance across the Arab and Islamic World.”

Hezbollah Chief suggested boycotting all the US goods or at least the products of some (e.g. Trump’s) firms, adding that the US point of weakness is its economy.

“The Israeli enemy has a major weakness which is the human losses; similarly, the Americans have their economic and financial situation as a point of fragility.  Hezbollah hit the Israeli enemy at its weakness, so, likewise, we can concentrate on the US economic interests.”

Sayyed Nasrallah called on the elites, scholars, companies and governments in the region to get involved in this comprehensive confrontation with the United States, suggesting that lawyers file lawsuits against the US officials accused of committing crimes.

Sayyed Nasrallah pointed out that the so-called “deal of the century” cannot be described as a ‘deal’ because it refers merely to the plan of the US president Donald Trump’s plan to eradicate the Palestinian cause.

All the Palestinian forces have rejected and may never approve Trump’s scheme, according to Sayyed Nasrallah who considered that this is basic in frustrating the US plan.

Sayyed Nasrallah noted that consistency of stances which reject Trump’s plan is required to frustrate it, adding that the US will is not an inevitable destiny and citing previous cases of Washington’s failure when opposed by resistance.

No one approved the US plan except Trump and Netanyahu, according to Sayyed Nasrallah who underscored the Palestinian, Arab and international rejection of the scheme.

Hezbollah leader hailed the consensus of the Lebanese political parties which have rejected Trump’s plan, attributing this attitude to the recognition of the dangers of the scheme to Lebanon and the entire region.

Sayyed Nasrallah noted that Trump’s Lebanon affects Lebanon because it grants the occupied Shebaa Farms, Kfar Shuba hills and the Lebanese part of Al-Ghajar town to the Zionist entity, stipulates naturalizing the Palestinian refugees and impacts the border demarcation.

“The spirit of Trump’s plan will be decisive in the issue of demarcating the land and sea borders with occupied Palestine and will affect Lebanon’s oil wealth.”

Sayyed Nasrallah pointed out that what reassures the Lebanese about the rejection of the naturalization of the Palestinian refugees is the consensual attitude of all the parties in this regard and the prelude of the Constitution, calling for respecting certain groups’ fears related to this issue.

We should not be outraged by the fears and concerns of some Lebanese parties about the naturalization, the farms and hills, and oil resources, according to Hezbollah Chief who also asked about the guarantees for the consistency of the stances which reject Trump’s deal.

“Who can guarantee that the attitude of certain Lebanese parties may not change in favor of Trump’s plan, especially if their approval gets linked to financial aids to Lebanon which is facing a serious economic crisis?”

“Trump plan does not guarantee Palestinian refugees the right of return to their homeland, instead calling for them to be granted citizenship in the states they currently reside in.”

Sayyed Nasrallah considered that the Arab attitude towards Trump’s plan is excellent, adding but some said that it can be studied being the only choice.

“This is how surrender begins. It is scary that some Arab, especially Gulf, regimes may individually approve Trump’s deal.”

“It’s right to say that Trump’s deal was born dead, but it’s also right to say that Trump insists on implementing it.”

Meanwhile, Sayyed Nasrallah fraternally addressed the Iraqi people, calling on them to respond to the US crime of assassinating the two martyrs Hajj Al-Muhandis and General Suleimani, preserve the Popular Mobilization (Hashd Shaabi) in spite of the US scheme to eradicate it, expel the US forces of Iraq, and strengthen the Iraqi role in the region.

Sayyed Nasrallah started his speech with felicitations on the birthday of Sayyeda Fatima Al-Zahraa (P), the daughter of Prophet Muammad (PBUH).

Hezbollah leader also congratulated Imam Khamenei and all Iranians on the 41st anniversary of the Islamic Revolution’s victory, adding that Iran has remained strong and will never stop supporting the oppressed people all over the world and recalling the enemy’s bets on the collapse of the Islamic regime.

Sayyed Nasrallah further felicitated the Bahraini people, led by Sheikh Issa Qassem, on the ninth anniversary of their peaceful revolution which seeks democracy and freedom

Sayyed Nasralah highlighted the sacrifices made by the Bahrainis (martyrs, wounded and arrestees) against the unjust regime, “which turned Bahrain to a treachery platform conspiring against the Palestinian cause and normalizing ties with the Zionist entity.”

Sayyed Nasrallah stressed that the martyrs General Qasem Suleimani, Hajj Abu Mahdi Al-Muhanidis,  Al-Muhandis, Sayyed Abbas al-Moussawi, Sheikh Ragheb Harb and Hajj Imad Mughniyeh had faith, loyalty and honesty as common traits, adding that they assumed responsibility and showed willingness to make limitless sacrifices.

Sayyed Nasrallah highlighted that the resistance is not a matter of speeches separate from the reality, calling for reading the will of martyr Suleimani who used to assume the responsibility of his people and Umma.

It is worth noting that the ceremony started with a blessed recitation of Holy Quranic verses before Lebanon’s and Hezbollah’s anthems were played.

February 16 is the martyrdom anniversary of Hezbollah’s Leaders, Sheikh Ragheb Harb, Sayyed Abbas Al-Mousawi and Hajj Imad Mughniyeh, all were assassinated by the Zionist enemy throughout different years of confrontation, but in the same week.

Sheikh Ragheb Harb was assassinated by an Israeli agent on February 16, 1984.

Late Hezbollah Secretary General Sayyed Abbas al-Mousawi was martyred, along with his wife and son, when an Israeli airstrike attacked his convoy as he was attending the commemoration anniversary of Sheikh Harb on February 16, 1992.

Later on February 12, 2008, Hezbollah’s top military commander Hajj Imad Moghniyeh was martyred in a car bomb attack carried out by Israeli Mossad agents.

On January 3, 2020, a US drone attack targeted a vehicular convoy for the head of the IRGC Al-Quds Force General Qassem Suleimani and the deputy chief of Hasd Shaabi Committee Abu Mahdi Al-Muhandis, claiming both of them in addition to a number of their companions.

Source: Al-Manar English Website

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6 شباط: إسقاط 17 أيار…. وإسقاط صفقة القرن!

صفقة القرن.. طريق للتحرير

ناصر قنديل

يتعامل الكثيرون باستخفاف مع التزام قوى وحكومات محور المقاومة بإسقاط صفقة القرن، ويستعينون بكل ما لديهم من وسائل التعجب للقول إنها أميركا يا جماعة، ومعها الغرب والعرب، وما تقوله ثمرة دراسة وتوظيف مقدرات، وليس من الواقعية توقع سقوط صفقة القرن بعدما أعلنها الرئيس الأميركي، بل يمكن الاكتفاء بإعلان الاعتراض عليها، ويستعينون بالذاكرة ليستحضروا مثال كامب ديفيد، ليضيفوا أن أربعة عقود مضت على توقيعه ولا يزال على قيد الحياة، ورغم وجود معارضة واسعة له بقي أمراً واقعاً. وكي يكون النقاش مبسطاً وسهلاً على هؤلاء، لن نغوص في الفوارق الكبيرة بين حالتي كامب ديفيد وصفقة القرن، حيث لا وجود لشريك فلسطيني في صفقة القرن مقابل وجود رئيس مصري يزور القدس ويعلن استعداده للتوقيع في كامب ديفيد، وحيث الموضوع في صفقة القرن يتصل بالقدس ومستقبلها، بينما يتعلق الأمر بسيناء في كامب ديفيد، ومقابل تضمين صفقة القرن منح القدس لكيان الاحتلال، قامت تفاهمات كامب ديفيد على عودة سيناء لمصر، لكننا سنتخطى كل ذلك ونخفض مستوى النقاش بالعودة إلى الذاكرة فقط والمقارنة مع مخزونها.

عندما اجتاحت قوات الاحتلال العاصمة اللبنانية بيروت، وكشفت بوضوح عن تفاهمات دولية وعربية سبقت الاجتياح مضمونها أن يكون لبنان الدولة العربية الثانية التي توقع اتفاق سلام مع “إسرائيل” بعد مصر، جاءت القوات الأميركية إلى بيروت من ضمن تشكيل إطار قوات متعدّدة الجنسيات شاركت فيها فرنسا وإيطاليا وبريطانيا وتمركزت في العاصمة بيروت. وقام الخبراء الأميركيون بإعادة بناء وتسليح وتنظيم الجيش اللبناني لمواجهة أي اعتراض قد يواجه مشروع الاتفاق المطلوب بين لبنان و”إسرائيل”. وبدأت المفاوضات فوراً، برعاية أميركية تولاها المبعوث الرئاسي الأميركي من أصل لبناني فيليب حبيب، وخلال شهور قليلة أنجز الاتفاق الذي عرف بتاريخ إقراره في 17 أيار 1983، وصادق عليه وزير الخارجية الأميركية آنذاك جورج شولتز، وخلال عشرة شهور امتدت حتى 6 شباط 1984 كان الأميركيون يتلقون الضربات القاتلة، وكان الجيش الذي بنوه يتشقق وينهار، وكانت المقاومة بوجه الاحتلال تبلغ مراحل متقدّمة تفرض انسحابات على جيش الاحتلال بعد الانسحاب الأول من بيروت، وخلال أسابيع رحل الأميركيون وبدأ مسار سياسي انتهى بإسقاط اتفاق 17 أيار.

ما أشبه اليوم بالأمس، لكن مع فوارق الغلبة لليوم، فـ”إسرائيل” تواجه اليوم في فلسطين والمنطقة ما لم يكن موجوداً يومها، حيث تقع منشآتها الحيوية في مرمى صواريخ المقاومة الفلسطينية واللبنانية والعراقية واليمنية، ومحور المقاومة يخوض مواجهة عنوانها إخراج الأميركيين من المنطقة، وأين مقدرات الذين أخرجوا الأميركي من لبنان قياساً بمقدرات الذي يسعون لإخراجه اليوم، ويومها كانت أميركا و”إسرائيل” في مرحلة صعود القوة، وهما اليوم في مرحلة الانحدار، أما الموقف العربي فيكفي أن نستعيدَ دعم قمة الدار البيضاء لتوقيع لبنان على الاتفاق باستثناء سورية ورئيسها الراحل حافظ الأسد الذي تعهّد بإسقاط الاتفاق، كما تعهّد السيد علي الخامنئي اليوم بإسقاط صفقة القرن وموتها تحت عين الرئيس الأميركي دونالد ترامب وهو على قيد الحياة. وموضوع 17 أيار كان لبنان بينما موضوع صفقة القرن هو القدس والعودة وفلسطين، واللبنانيون كانوا منقمسين حول الاتفاق بينما يتوحّد الفلسطينيون في رفض الصفقة، وأميركا هي التي تدرس كل شيء وتخطّط وتحسب الاحتمالات، وتجهز الفرضيات وتصدر الأوامر للعرب، فلماذا لم يتجرأ أحد منهم على إعلان التأييد لصفقة القرن وقرّروا رفضها في الجامعة العربية، بينما أيدوا اتفاق 17 أيار قبل أن يولد، وكيف فاجأتهم الأحداث واضطروا للهرب بحراً، وترك الاتفاق يسقط؟

الشيء بالشيء يُذكَر، لأنها أميركا، التي طوت الصفحة ومضت عندما تحققت من أن شيئاً لن يغير المعادلة ويعيد الاتفاق إلى الحياة، فتركت الذين راهنوا عليها يواجهون مصيرهم وحدهم، وتتمة الحكاية المعلومة جديرة بالتذكّر للذين يقعون في وهم الرهان اليوم، وما أشبه الأمس باليوم، ونحن في ذكرى انتقاضة 6 شباط، التي ربما ينظر إليها بعض اللبنانيين كفصل من فصول الحرب الأهلية، وننظر إليها كبوابة عبور من زمن الاحتلال إلى زمن المقاومة، ومن بوابتها ننظر بعين التقدير والإجلال والإكبار لرمزها الرئيس نبيه بري، وننتظر نبيه بري عراقي يستثمر تضحيات كل المقاومين ليخرج الأميركيين، ونبيه بري فلسطيني يقود وحدة سياسية وعسكرية بوجه مشروع الاحتلال ليسقط صفقة القرن.

مقالات متعلقة

Al-Quds Car Ramming Op.: 14 «Israelis» Injured, 1 in Critical Condition

By Staff, Agencies

“Israeli” military claimed a car-ramming had left 14 people, mostly soldiers, injured, including one in a serious condition, in central al-Quds [Jerusalem].

The incident occurred early on Thursday near al-Quds’ First Station, a popular entertainment hub.

The “Israeli” army said the soldiers targeted were from the Golani Brigade and were making their way to the Buraq Wall in the Old City of al-Quds [Jerusalem].

Police said the driver of the vehicle had fled the scene and “a large force of officers were carrying out searches.”

“We saw three young people lying down on the sidewalk and around nine others who were also hit were standing,” Magen David Adom medic Oz Faulk said. “One person was unconscious. A 20-year-old who suffered from head and body injuries told us a car had come and run them over.”

The situation is also tense in the “Israeli”-blockaded Gaza Strip.

“Israeli” warplanes attacked what they claimed were Hamas targets in the besieged coastal sliver early on Thursday.

The “Israeli” army claimed that its airstrikes came “in response to mortars and explosive balloons launched from Gaza” into the occupied territories.

Violence has surged in the occupied lands following the release of US President Donald Trump’s self-proclaimed “deal of the century,” which all Palestinian groups have unanimously rejected.

Trump’s Middle East scheme largely meets the “Israeli” entity’s demands in the decades-old conflict while creating a Palestinian state with limited control over its own security and borders.

It also enshrines al-Quds as to so-called “capital” of the “Israeli” entity and allows the regime to annex settlements in the occupied West Bank and the Jordan Valley.

The proposal further denies the right of return of Palestinian refugees into their homeland, among other controversial terms.

Hamas, Islamic Jihad Hail Car Ramming Attack: Practical Response to “Deal of The Century”

February 6, 2020

Hamas and Islamic Jihad Palestinian Resistance movements hailed on Thursday a car ramming attack in Al-Quds in which 14 Israelis were injured.

Islamic Jihad said the operation in Al-Quds represents a new phase of confrontation with the Zionist entity that aims at foiling US President Donald Trump’s so-called “Deal of the Century” and defending holy sites.

“The one who carried out the operation knows well what he wants. He targeted group of well-armed soldiers,” the group said in a statement.

The operation comes at a time the Israeli occupation intensifies its raids against Palestinians in West Bank and refugee camps, the Islamic Jihad said stressing that such operations prove that the Palestinian people won’t surrender and will firmly defend its country.

Hamas also hailed the attack, describing it as a “practical response” to the “Deal of the Century.”

Spokesman Hazem Qassem said the operation was part of resistance operations, including a series of demonstrations in the occupied West Bank.

“The resistance acts throughout the West Bank — the clashes between our people from the far south of the West Bank to the north, and the resistance operation in the heart of occupied Jerusalem — are a practical response by our people to Trump’s announcement of the liquidation deal,” Qassem said.

Source: Al-Manar and AFP

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حكام العرب في مأزق وليس لبنان… فلا تبتزّوا دياب!

ناصر قنديل

– تتعرّض حكومة الرئيس حسان دياب، التي لا تتبنّى انحيازاً مسبقاً لأي رأي أو محور إقليمي، للابتزاز تحت عنوان، إياكم وأن تُغضِبوا حكام الخليج، فلبنان في مأزق ويحتاج إلى عطف ورحمة هؤلاء الحكام، عساهم يمنّون عليه ببعض مما لديهم من المال. وينطلق أصحاب التحذير من معطىً معلوم وهو حاجات لبنان المالية ومعطيين خاطئين، الأول أن قرار دفع المال للبنان من العرب ليس عربياً، بل هو قرار تتخذه واشنطن، بمعزل عن كيفية تعامل لبنان مع الحكومات الخليجيّة، والثاني هو أن الحكومات العربية والخليجية خصوصاً مرتاحة لوضعها، وآخر همها ما يفعله وما يقوله لبنان واللبنانيون؛ بينما واقع الحال وما يجري في المنطقة يعبر عن ارتباك خليجي خصوصاً وعربي عموماً، سواء تجاه التجاذب الأميركي الإيراني ومخاوف دفع فواتيره، أو تجاه صفقة القرن وكيفيّة التعامل مع الإحراج الذي تسبّبت به لهم، وهم في السرّ شركاء وفي العلن خصوم.

– لبنان عموماً وحكومة الرئيس دياب خصوصاً، رغم ضغط الوضع المالي الصعب في وضع وصفه السفير الأميركي الأسبق جيفري فيلتمان، إن أفرج العرب والخليجيون خصوصاً عن بعض المال اللازم، ليس لديهم سبب ليكونوا في موقع سياسي مناوئ ولا يبحثون عن خصام. وإن لم يفعلوا، وقد ذكر فيلتمان السعودية بأن ديون لبنان بالعملات الصعبة تبلغ 35 مليار دولار أي أقلّ مما تنفقه السعودية على حرب اليمن في عام واحد، فعندها سيسلك لبنان بدائل لا تُفرح واشنطن وربما دول الخليج، ويفتح أبواب التفاوض مع روسيا والصين، سيتغيّر الوضع إلى غير رجعة، وللذين يقولون إن المال عند العرب والغرب ويختصرون الحديث عن المقارنة بروسيا فيتذاكون بالسؤال، وهل روسيا لديها مال لتعطيه؟ لا بد من إجابتهم أننا في النفط والغاز والخيارات الاستراتيجية نتحدث عن روسيا، أما في المال والشركات الناجحة في مجالات الاتصالات والموانئ والسكك الحديدة والمطارات والكهرباء، وهي تنفذ أهم المشاريع في الغرب نفسه، فالحديث هو عن الصين وليس عن روسيا، ويجب أن يقترن بالتذكير أن أكبر حامل لسندات الخزينة الأميركية هي الصين، بما يزيد عن 3,6 تريليون دولار. ومعلوم أن لا الصين ولا روسيا ستُبديان الاهتمام بلبنان إذا لم يكن لهما فيه نصيب سياسي، ولهما عنده مكانة مميزة. وهذا إن حدث يعرف العرب أن لبنان ليس في مأزق، على ذمة فيلتمان، الذي نصح حكومة بلاده والحكام العرب بتمويل لبنان وعدم الدفع بالأزمة أكثر، كي لا تذهب الأمور إلى خيارات يصعب التراجع عنها.

– في السياسة جاء اجتماع وزراء الخارجية العرب وما بعده الإسلامي، ليقولا إن الخطاب اللبناني كان الأكثر انسجاماً مع نفسه. فلبنان مناهض لصفقة القرن تمسكاً منه بالقضية الفلسطينية وإدراكاً منه أنها قلب قضايا المنطقة وأزماتها، وكل حل لها على حساب حقوق الشعب الفلسطيني سيزيد من التأزم والتوتر. وفوق ذلك لإجماع اللبنانيين على أن الصفقة تنهي حق العودة للاجئين الفلسطينيين وتستبدله بتوطينهم في بلدان اللجوء، وهو ما يرفضه اللبنانيون ويعرفون مدى تأثيره السلبي على توازناتهم وسلمهم الأهلي. بينما أغلب الحكام العرب الواقفين في خندق واشنطن فقلوبهم مع الصفقة، لكنهم يدركون بعقولهم أن ما سبق وقالوه لشعوبهم تبريراً للتهرّب من مسؤولياتهم نحو فلسطين قد صار اليوم قيداً عليهم، فهم أصحاب شعار، نكون وراء الفلسطينيين في ما يختارون وما يقبلون وما يرفضون. وها هم الفلسطينيون يقولون لا مدوية لصفقة ترامب. فوجد العرب أنفسهم في الجامعة وفي المؤتمر الإسلامي ملزمون بقول ما لا ينسجم مع ما فعلوا لتصير الصفقة مشروعاً على الطاولة. وحكام العرب يحتاجون لبنان المناوئ للصفقة والذي يملك مقدرات ودور بقوة مقاومته يحسب له الإسرائيليون ألف حساب، ويشكل إلى جانب الفلسطينيين عقبة كبيرة بوجه مرور الصفقة. ولبنان الذي سيذهب إلى سورية من باب مصلحته الوطنية والاقتصادية منسجم مع نفسه، بينما أغلب الحكام العرب في مأزق فهم يدركون حاجتهم أمس قبل اليوم واليوم قبل الغد لإعادة أفضل العلاقات مع سورية، لكنهم ممنوعون بقوة القرار الأميركي من فعل ذلك، فيستطيعون تحميل المسؤولين اللبنانيين الذاهبون إلى دمشق التحيات والاعتذارات، ويراهنون على القول لاحقاً، نحن شجّعنا اللبنانيين للذهاب إلى دمشق، أو إلى بغداد.

– المواجهة الدائرة في المنطقة بين إيران ومعها محور المقاومة من جهة، وأميركا من جهة مقابلة، ليست معركة قابلة للتحوّل إلى حرب كبرى، وإن حدث ذلك فستكون دول الخليج مسرحها أكثر من لبنان، لكن كما يبدو فنهايتها تسوية تضمن خروج الأميركيين، وحفظ ماء وجههم، وترتيبات جديدة في المنطقة. وهذه الترتيبات تؤكدها الخطوات الأميركية نحو إعلان صفقة القرن وهي تدرك استحالة تحولها مشروعاً عملياً لتكون إبراء ذمة تجاه كيان الاحتلال، لأن واشنطن تدرك أنها كي تذهب إلى التسوية مع إيران ومحور المقاومة يجب أن لا تحمل “إسرائيل” معها ولا تحمل مطالبها، ولذلك فعليها أن تمنح لـ”إسرائيل” ما تستطيع كي تتمكّن من الذهاب للتسوية ولا تتّهم بخيانة “إسرائيل” والتخلّي عنها، لكن في النهاية سيربح دوراً من يملك رصيداً في المحور الذي ستكون له الكلمة العليا في المنطقة، ومن حظ العرب أن يمنحوا لبنان اليوم بعضاً من مال، أملاً بأن يمنحهم لاحقاً بعضاً من نتائج الدور.

فرصة صفقة القرن لوحدة اللبنانيين

ناصر قنديل

عانى لبنان خلال قرن كامل من أولوية الخيارات الإقليمية والخارجية على الخيارات والشؤون الداخلية في رسم الاصطفاف السياسي، بخلاف كل دول العالم التي توحّدها رؤية مشتركة في المفاصل الكبرى لرسم المصالح الوطنية تحتوي اصطفافات داخلية في مواقع متباينة؛ بينما لبنان منذ انقسام اللبنانيين حول الانضمام لدولة الملك فيصل في دمشق، كما قالت مؤتمرات الساحل، أو الاحتفال بلبنان الكبير كما كان خيار زعماء جبل لبنان، منقسم حول الخيارات الإقليمية، بين الدخول في حلف بغداد أو الوقوف مع جمال عبد الناصر، وبين الوقوف مع المقاومة الفلسطينية أو اعتبارها خطراً على السيادة اللبنانية، حتى عندما وقع الاحتلال الإسرائيلي انقسم حوله اللبنانيون، وخلال مسيرة المقاومة تواصل الانقسام ولو تغيّرت الشعارات، وبعد التحرير تغيّرت مرة أخرى الشعارات وتعمق الانقسام، وبقي لبنان عندما ينتصر يشعر بعض الداخل بمرارة الهزيمة، وعندما يسقط صريعاً يشعر بعض الداخل بنشوة النصر، ودائماً كانت القضايا التي تتشكّل منها السياسة في أي بلد تصير ثانوية في لبنان بسبب هذا التشوّه البنيويّ.

ما حملته صفقة القرن من تحدٍّ وجودي للبنان واللبنانيين، أظهر جملة إشارات لفرصة لبنانية تحمل بعض الأمل بتغير قواعد الاشتباك بين القوى السياسية الوازنة، فتلاقى موقف رئيس الجمهورية ورئيس مجلس النواب ورئيس الحكومة مع مواقف أطراف الغالبية وأغلب المعارضة. ويجب النظر بتمعن في موقف تيار المستقبل بصفته القوة الوازنة في الجبهة المقابلة للحكومة، الذي عبر عن تشخيص مخاطر الصفقة وحتميّة مواجهتها، والتمسك بحقوق الشعب الفلسطيني، ودعم نضاله لإسقاط الصفقة، والتمسك بحق العودة ورفض التوطين، والذي ختم بالقول إن الصفقة لن تمرّ، وبالتوازي شهدت ساحات الحراك رغم جفاف الحشود الذي تعانيه منذ أسابيع حركة لافتة لمجموعات خرجت بهتافات تضامنيّة مع الشعب الفلسطيني وقضيته، وهي تهتف “تسقط تسقط إسرائيل”، والحراك هو الضفة الثانية التي يهمّ رصد حركتها لرسم المشهد السياسي المقبل.

بين الشعور بالخوف والقلق من أن تشكل الانقسامات اللبنانية من لبنان الخاصرة الرخوة التي تتلقى كل العائدات السلبية للتحولات الإقليمية، والخوف من ضغوط مالية لفرض تحوّلات بنيوية تفجر الداخل اللبناني بعنوان التوطين، وتجعل الطوائف في حال استنفار ديمغرافي وجودي تتهم بعضها بعضاً بالتواطؤ والتآمر، والقلق من استغلال الوضع المالي لفرض إملاءات لتعديل الحدود الدولية للبنان التي تجاهلتها خرائط صفقة القرن ودعت لتفاوض على ترسيمها، وفي قلبها ثروات النفط والغاز، تتوافر فرصة هامة لتصويب مسار السياسة في لبنان المختلّ منذ قرن، فيلتقي اللبنانيون لحماية المصالح العليا لدولتهم ووطنهم، ويحفظون حق الاختلاف على شؤون السياسة المحلية، كتعبير عن استقامة فهمهم للسياسة بعد طول غياب، لأن لا أحد يدعو للربط بين المسؤوليّة الوطنية عن موقف جامع بوجه صفقة القرن ومخاطرها، وبين الخلافات السياسيّة الداخلية المشروعة، والتي يترتب على فصلها عن مساعي التوظيف في الاصطفاف التصادمي على ضفاف السياسات الخارجية، وضعها في إطارها الطبيعي وإدارتها تحت سقف الأمن الوطني بمفهومه الكبير، القائم على قواعد اللعبة الديمقراطية واحترام أصولها.

الاختبار الحقيقي لصدقيّة هذه الفرصة يتمثل بعدم الاكتفاء بموقف يتيم يليه صمت القبور، بل بقدرة الأطراف السياسية على التصرف كجبهة موحّدة في التصدي للمخاطر التي تستهدف لبنان، وقد باتت محدقة وواضحة المصدر والأهداف، والفصل بينها وبين الخلاف السياسي الداخلي، الذي يمكن إدارته على نار هادئة إذا توحّدت الخطوات التي تعمل جدياً على مواجهة الخطر الداهم. وهذا هو المفهوم الديمقراطي العميق لتداول السلطة الذي لا يعني في غير لبنان إخلالاً بالثوابت الوطنية وتغييراً في التوجهات من المسائل الوطنية، وإذا اجتاز لبنان هذا الامتحان بنجاح سيفتح الباب لتداول السلطة بطريقة سلسة في استحقاقات مقبلة.

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فوائد صفقة القرن أكثر من أضرارها

ناصر قنديل

أمام الصخب والضجيج الذي نسمعه عن مخاطر صفقة القرن واعتبارها تحوّلاً مفصلياً نحو تصفية القضية الفلسطينية، نحاول التدقيق في الإجابة على سؤال، هل سيغيّر الإعلان الأميركي عن منح كيان الاحتلال التصديق على اغتصاب فلسطين والقدس وإسقاط حق العودة للاجئين في الوضع القانوني الدولي لهذه الركائز التي تتكوّن منها القضية الفلسطينية. فنسأل هل سيغيّر إعلان الرئيس الأميركي دونالد ترامب من موازين القوى السياسية والعسكرية بصورة تتيح لكيان الاحتلال سحق إرادة الشعب الفلسطيني بالقوة وفرض قبول هذا الذل والاستسلام؟ ثم نسأل هل يوجد أي احتمال لإمكانية قبول سياسي وشعبي بالعرض الأميركي يمنح مشروعية للصفقة لتصير صفقة، سواء في السلطة الفلسطينية أو خارجها، هل يوجد مَن هو قادر على قبول مقايضة الهوية والقضية بالمال واتحاد بلديات، مقابل سوبر دولة لكيان الاحتلال، ومنح هذا القبول نسبة وازنة من الشرعية الشعبية والسياسية والحماية لفرضها كأمر واقع؟

عندما يأتي الجواب على كل هذه الأسئلة بالنفي، أي أن لا قدرة أميركية على جعل القرار الأميركي قراراً أممياً يغيّر من الوضع القانوني للأراضي المحتلة وللقدس ولحق اللاجئين بالعودة، وأن لا قدرة إسرائيلية مع الدعم الأميركي المفترض على فرض هذا الحل بالقوة، وأن لا وجود لفرضيّة إيجاد شريك فلسطيني يمنح المشروعيّة الشعبية والسياسية للصفقة ويمهّد لفرضها كأمر واقع، يصير ممكناً القول إن لا أخطار وجودية على القضية الفلسطينية من إعلان ترامب، وأن حدود النتائج المؤذية هي في إقدام كيان الاحتلال على المزيد من إجراءات الضمّ والاستيطان، بتغطية ودعم أميركيين، وأن ما سيترتب على الإعلان الأميركي بالمقابل، إنهاء عقود من الوهم تحت عنوان التسوية السياسية للقضية الفلسطينية، وعقود من الزيف بتسويق واشنطن كوسيط نزيه بين فلسطين وكيان الاحتلال، وإسقاط مزيد من الأقنعة التي عاشت عقوداً على وجوه حكام عرب أدمنوا النفاق بادعاء التمسّك بالحق الفلسطيني وهم يدمنون الولاء والخضوع للمشيئة الأميركية، فهل في هذا ضرر يُصيب القضية الفلسطينية؟

ما سيترتّب على الإعلان الأميركي هو أنه يضع القيادات العربية بين خياري، التمسك بالولاء والخضوع لواشنطن أو التمسك بالحقوق الفلسطينية، وهذا يعني الحكام والنخب والأحزاب، وكذلك يضع القيادات الفلسطينية أمام خيار حصرية المقاومة الشعبية والمسلحة كطريق لحفظ الحق الفلسطيني، والدفاع عن وجود القضية والهوية، والتخلّي عن أوهام التسوية وعن نظرية 99% من أوراق اللعبة بيد أميركا، لأن ما بيد أميركا هو بيد “إسرائيل”، وما سيترتب هو أن الفلسطينيين سيعرفون مَن هم حلفاؤهم بين العرب وفي العالم، ومَن هم المتآمرون عليهم. وهذا سيقضي على أخطر مرض يجتاح البلاد العربية وهو المذهبية والطائفية، وأن المنطقة ستنقسم سياسياً بين جماعة “إسرائيل” تدعمها أميركا، وجماعة فلسطين تدعمها شعوب المنطقة ومقاوماتها.

كانت دائماً مهمة واشنطن في تقديم الحماية الحقيقية لكيان الاحتلال تتجسّد بإدامة وجود وهم لحل القضية الفلسطينية عن طريق التفاوض، وإدامة وهم التمايز بين واشنطن وتل أبيب، لمنح القيادات العربية والفلسطينية التي تدور في الفلك الأميركيّ، فرصة تحييد النسبة الأغلب من الشعوب عن طريق المقاومة، بداعي انتظار نتائج التفاوض، وما يفعله ترامب هو التخلّي عن هذا الدور، والقول بالفم الملآن، ليس هناك واشنطن وتل أبيب. فواشنطن هي تل أبيب وتل أبيب هي واشنطن. وهذه فرصة لوحدة عظيمة لصفوف الشعب الفلسطيني، وفرز تاريخي للخيارات في المنطقة، ونتيجة حتميّة ترفع من شأن خيار المقاومة، وتجعل الصراع مع مشروع الهيمنة الأميركية الإسرائيلية واحداً، وتجعل القوى الحيّة على مساحة المنطقة في الحكومات والأحزاب والنخب والشعوب في جبهة واحدة.

كانت صفقة القرن لتخيفنا، لو كانت في زمن الانكفاء والانكسار في الموقف الروسي، وقدرة واشنطن على فرض رؤيتها على مجلس الأمن الدولي لإسقاط الغطاء القانوني عن مقاومة الشعب الفلسطيني الرافضة للتنازل عن الحقوق. وكانت لتخيفنا لو أننا نعيش زمن صعود القوة العسكرية الأميركية والإسرائيلية وبالتالي قدرتها على سحق قوى المقاومة في فلسطين والمنطقة. وكانت لتخفينا لو أنه بقوة الحضور الدولي الأحاديّ لواشنطن وقدرة القوة العسكريّة على سحق قوى المقاومة، تولّدت حالة من اليأس والخضوع على الساحة الفلسطينية توفر للصفقة شرط اكتمالها بشريك فلسطينيّ وازن، يشتري ويبيع، أما وأن كل هذا ليس في دائرة الممكن فلماذا التفجّع؟

التفجّع على وقوع كارثة اسمها صفقة القرن، يناسب الذين ربطوا مصيرهم السياسي بوهم التسويات والتفاوض والوساطة الأميركيّة، فيجدون أنفسهم في مأزق وجودي بين السير في مشروع ترامب الذي يعادل الانتحار، أو الانتقال إلى معسكر المقاومة مرغَمين. والتفجّع يناسب الذين لبسوا أقنعة الدفاع عن القضية الفلسطينية وتخندقوا في واشنطن، لأنهم يجدون أنفسهم أمام صعوبة الحفاظ على توازنهم وكل قدم في خندق. والمسافة تتسع بين الخندقين وقد بات عليهم حسم أمورهم، وإسقاط أقنعتهم. والتفجّع يناسب الذين أمضوا حياتهم يرسمون الخرائط لتوليفة يرضاها الأميركي ويقتنع بها الإسرائيلي، وهم يظنّون أن التسوية آتية ومشكلتها تقنية، أما الذين يؤمنون بأن فلسطين لأهلها من البحر إلى النهر، ويؤمنون بأن القدس الموحّدة عاصمتها، ويؤمنون بحق شعب فلسطين في الشتات بالعودة إلى أرضه وتقرير مصيره وبناء دولته، فيجدون بما يجري تأكيداً لما أفنوا العمر وهم يردّدونه على مسامع الأرض، بأن لا أمل يرتجى من الرهان على أميركا، وأن لا حلّ مع هذا الكيان ولا عودة للحقوق إلا بالمقاومة، ويجدون بما يجري مزيداً من الروافد لتأكيد منطقهم وصواب خياراتهم، ودفعاً لها للتقدّم لتصير خيار الشعوب في المنطقة بعد سنوات من التخدير تحت عنوان الوسيط الأميركي النزيه والخيار التفاوضي الممكن وانتظار التسوية الآتية.

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Hezbollah Slams Trump’s ‘Deal of Century’, Arab Regime’s Involvement, Says People Can Overthrow it Soon

Translated by Staff

Hezbollah issued the following statement:

Hezbollah condemns and strongly rejects the deal of shame tabled by the savage Trump administration at the expense of the Palestinian people, their land, sanctities and legitimate natural rights. It regards the deal as a very dangerous step that carries serious repercussions for the region’s future and its peoples.

Hezbollah’s view is that the satanic American administration completed the ‘Israeli’ aggression today by trying to eliminate the historical and legitimate rights of the Palestinian people after decades of supporting the enemy, its occupation, its aggressions and massacres against the Arab peoples.

This deal would not have taken place had it not been for the complicity and betrayal of a number of Arab regimes secretly and publicly involved in this conspiracy. The people of our nation who believe in the Palestinian cause will never forgive those rulers who, for the sake of their tenuous thrones, wasted a long history of martyrs, suffering and resisting the occupation at the expense of truth and dignity.

The resettlement project that is part of this deal is one of the most visible dangers aimed at stamping out the right of return and depriving the Palestinian people of their rights to their lands, eliminate the Palestinian cause from the memory of its sons and work to create social and demographic tensions as well as evolving sedition that only serve the enemy’s interests and goals in expansion.

What happened today in Washington confirms that resistance is the only option to liberate the land and restore the sanctities. All the other negotiating options do not return the land nor liberate prisoners but rather push the enemy towards further aggression and arrogance.

We applaud the Palestinian people, leaders and resistance factions for being at the forefront rejecting and confronting, with full force, the so-called deal of the century. Their brave stances have become the compass for our Arab and Islamic peoples, which have lost confidence in many of their regimes and rulers. And they believe that the Palestinian people will be the beacon of hope at this stage as they have been in the past.

Affirming that all conspiracies, deals and betrayals cannot eradicate the Palestinians’ right to their lands and sanctities and the right of return to their villages and cities, Hezbollah stresses that our nation and its vigilant people are able to overthrow this deal soon and thwart its effects, God willing.

Hezbollah

Lebanon’s Senior Officials Condemn ‘Deal of the Century’

The Lebanese President Michel Aoun on Wednesday contacted the PA Chief Mahmoud Abbas, voicing Lebanon’s solidarity with the Palestinians against “Deal of the Century.

President Aoun stressed that Lebanon holds upon Palestinians’ right to return to their homeland and establish their state whose capital will be Al-Quds (Jerusalem).

Speaker of the House, Nabih Berri, said in a press release issued by his press office that “the deal of the century” has dashed the Palestinians’ little hope of building a country of their own, with Jerusalem its capital.

“This agreement is just a bribe to sell the rights, sovereignty, dignity, and Palestinian Arab lands with Arab money,” Berri said.

“We reconfirm that Lebanon and the Lebanese will not be false witnesses in the new death penalty against the Palestinian people and their legitimate rights, including their right to return home. We will not accept, regardless of the conditions, to be an accomplice in the sale or exchange of these rights,” the statement read.

Finally, Berri called on Arab and Muslim countries, especially the Palestinian people, to strengthen national unity and resistance in order to free up the occupied land and preserve the little remaining Arab dignity.

For his part the Prime Minister Hassan Diab highlighted via Twitter that Al-Quds will remain the destiny, the (central) cause.

Source: NNA

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Trump deal will fell peace process house of cards

Omar Karmi Power Suits 24 January 2020

Israeli PM Benjamin Netanyahu on the campaign trail.
 Gili YaariZUMA Press

Brace yourselves, here it comes.

After years of mounting excitement, the time is finally ripe. The US administration is going to show its hand and unveil the “closely-held” Ultimate Deal of the Century™ before the main contenders for Israel’s leadership go to Washington on Tuesday.

Maybe.

It’s “a great plan,” according to man-of-the-hour Donald Trump, the US president, neatly dispelling any complaints from moaning snowflakes who keep harping on about rights and history and justice and truth and sustainability and blah, blah, blah.

But what exactly is this great plan?

According to Trump, it’s not what you’ve read already.

What you may have read already comes courtesy of unnamed “senior Israeli officials.” According to them, the plan will see Israel annex all of Jerusalem as well as between 30-40 percent of Area C of the West Bank (the 60 percent of the West Bank already under full Israeli control). This includes the Jordan Valley and thus access to the outside world.

The plan would also give Israel a green light to annex all but 15 settlements in the occupied territory – illegal under international law, but no longer in the eyes of the US administration.

Israel will maintain uncontested military control over all the territory of historic Palestine and Palestinians will have to disarm Hamas and demilitarize the Gaza Strip.

Just words

But what do the Palestinians get? As anyone with any sense knows, a deal can only be “great” if all parties walk away feeling they’ve gained something.

Business mogul handbook 101.

Palestinians get statehood. Apparently. Some Israelis are not happy about that, so maybe not. Who knows? But according to “senior Israeli officials,” part of a plan that “really would work” is Palestinian statehood.

Over what? Not clear. Whatever is left, presumably, once Israel has had its fill. Territory-wise there would apparently be some land swaps, though with whom, where and how much has not been divulged.

Jerusalem? “Symbolic access,” whatever that means.

Sovereignty? No army, no control over borders, no control over airspace. So no.

Right of return for refugees? None. The US administration has made its own calculations, determining that the number of Palestinian refugees is roughly equivalent to Jews who fled Arab countries, therefore negating any right of return or even right to compensation.

Oh and Palestinians get $50 billion from “Sunni countries.” Thanks, guys.

Why now?

Palestinians have rejected the plan out of hand.

What else is the Palestinian Authority going to do? There is nothing in the plan, as outlined above, that any Palestinian leader could ever accept.

But that may be to miss the point.

Partly, this administration wants to ride roughshod over international law. After all, superpowers should not feel restrained by things such as rules. That’s what makes them powerful.

No better place to signal such intent than with Palestinians, whose case in international law is clear, open and shut.

But also, of course, this is about helping a friend in his time of need.

Benjamin Netanyahu, the incumbent prime minister, is trying to ward off corruption prosecution, a prosecution that will be brought should he fail to ensure immunity for himself.

He may not secure immunity if he does not form the next government. Trump is simply trying to help.

And with two Israeli elections already last year, Trump has had plenty of chances to prove his generosity.

First, he granted US blessing to Israel’s annexation of Jerusalem. Next, he recognized Israel’s annexation of the Golan Heights.

Then he reversed the US position on settlements in occupied territory.

Cognizant of this, Benny Gantz, Netanyahu’s main rival, has been falling over himself to promise that his annexation will be bigger than Netanyahu’s.

Not only is he trying to win votes, he is also showing that he knows how to play along with a US president who seems to appreciate sycophancy.

What now?

The plan is yet to be published. Many stalwart supporters of Israel have in the past cautioned against publishing such an obviously imbalanced deal.

There’s a good reason. This forces the hand of the Palestinian Authority. It ends its very reason to exist, namely in preparation for statehood. Real statehood. It crosses every “red line” the PA has ever marked out, whether on refugees, territory, sovereignty, Jerusalem, etc, and so on.

It pulls down the whole peace process charade.

Too many institutions, businesses and industries have been built and too many livelihoods are at stake for the PA to disband itself with immediate effect, however advisable that might be.

Indeed, it may well be that the PA leadership will try to simply sit tight and wait Trump out.

But there really is no time for that. The land is disappearing beneath the Palestinians’ feet.

Trump’s Ultimate Deal is the end of the PA.

Finally the USA Supports the One State Solution

 

One State .jpg

By Gilad Atzmon

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo announced yesterday that the US is softening its position on Israeli settlements in the West Bank. Secretary Pompeo repudiated the 1978 State Department legal opinion that stated that Jewish settlements in the occupied territories are “inconsistent with international law.”

 It is hard to determine whether the move was intended to rescue Benjamin Netanyahu’s political career or to buy the Jewish Lobby’s support for President Trump at a critical time. It is reasonable to assume that the policy was put forth to advance both aims.

 Pompeo’s declaration was, predictably, welcomed by PM Netanyahu and denounced by Palestinian officials and anyone else who still advances the delusional Two State Solution. Like Secretary Pompeo, I am far from an expert on international law, but it seems the notion of international law is vague or elastic enough to allow the secretary to (mis) interpret it in a radical manner. Yet, unlike most Palestinian solidarity campaigners, I see Trump, his administration and the recent move as a positive development.

 However inadvertently, Trump has finally committed the USA to the One State Solution. It is hard to deny that the area between the ‘River and the Sea’  is a single piece of land. It shares one electric grid, one pre-dial code (+972) and one sewage system. Ay present, the land is ruled over by a racist, tribal and discriminatory ideology through an apparatus that calls itself  ‘The Jewish State;’ and declares itself home for every Jew around the world; yet, is abusive, lethal and some would say genocidal toward the indigenous people of the land.

Yesterday’s move may buy Netanyahu some time and it may save Trump from being evicted from his current residence, but what it did most clearly was to redeliver a message to the Palestinians: In the battle for your liberation you are alone. America is not a negotiator, it has never been one. The USA has a side in the conflict and it is not your side.

In categorical terms Pompeo’s declaration repeats Trump’s earlier decision to move the American Embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem. On December 6, 2017, President Trump announced that the United States recognized Jerusalem as the capital of Israel and ordered the relocation of the U.S. Embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem. No doubt, the move bought Trump support from the Jewish Lobby in America, and political gain for Netanyahu in the Jewish State, it was also an unambiguous message to the Palestinians: there is no prospect of a  harmonious and peaceful solution for your plight.

 For the Palestinians, the move also exposed the misleading and dangerous nature of their ‘solidarity’ movement. Jewish ‘anti’ Zionist institutions have undertaken a relentless effort to suppress the Palestinian’s Right of Return and replace it with watery alternatives such as ‘End of occupation’ or  ‘the Right to BDS.’ Trump’s move forced the Palestinians to accept that they were alone in their battle and finally  accept that The Right of Return is the core and the essence of their plight. Less than four months after Trump’s Jerusalem decision, on 30 March 2018,  thousands of Gazans gathered on the Israeli border to demand a return to their land.

That clumsy decision by Trump made to serve some immediate political purpose to do with Jewish support has matured into a vast awakening for the Palestinians.  Week after week, for almost three years, Gazans have arrived at the Gaza border in the thousands to bravely confront the IDF’s merciless snipers, tanks and air force.  The Hamas owes a big thank you to Trump who has managed to fuel and unite the Palestinians with a renewed spirit of fearless resistance. Israeli military analysts and commanders admit that the situation at the Gaza border is pretty much out of control. They agree that Israel’s power of deterrence is literally a matter of  nostalgia. Accordingly, Palestinian resistance organizations do not hesitate to retaliate against  Israel. Last week Israel was hit by the rain of 400 rockets fired over the course of only two days in response to  Israel’s assassination of a Palestinian Islamic Jihad militant.

 Pompeo’s declaration provides an explicit and necessary message to the Palestinians in general and in the West Bank in particular. The conflict is not progressing toward a peaceful resolution. Those amongst the Palestinians who advocated the ‘Two States Solution’ will have to hide now.  Pompeo has affirmed that there is one Holy Land between the Jordan River and the Mediterranean Sea. From now on the battle over this disputed land is whether it will be subject to the racist discriminatory ideology implied by the notion of “The Jewish State” and its ‘National Bill,’ or if it will transform itself into a ‘State of its Citizens’ as is inherit in the notion of One Palestine.

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