When Israeli occupation’s government of Benjamin Netanyahu began to officially call Palestinians and Arabs to recognize it as a “Jewish state”, parties participating in the governing coalition started marketing the idea of “resident exchange”, in the same context of the PLO’s and the Arab League’s agreement on “land swap”, as an important first step that paves the way towards imposing “the Jewish identity” of the state as a reality on the ground and as something to use as bargain to annex the colonial settlements in the West Bank to the occupation state under the pretext of swapping it with part of the Palestinian Triangle to the proposed Palestinian state.
The occupation state succeeded in getting the United States to recognize it as a “Jewish State”.
U.S. President Harry Truman refused in 1948 to recognize the occupation state as a “Jewish state”. Instead, he recognized the “State of Israel” a few minutes after it was unilaterally announced by the Zionist movement. However, the current president, Barak Obama, just like his predecessor, George Bush, has turned against Truman’s rejection and against the American original recognition of the occupation state and has officially committed to its “Jewish identity”. Looking back at speeches and statements of Obama and his ministers as well as official comments for his administration in this regard, almost all of them designate it as a “Jewish State”.
Today, U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry, who comes from Jewish origins, is the God father of interpreting the “Jewish identity” of the occupation state into reality on the ground, through the negotiations he is mediating in the name of his country.
On the seventh of December, in his speech at the Saban Centre at the Brookings Institution, Kerry said that demography drives in the State of the occupation represent “an existential threat” that “makes it impossible to maintain its future as a Jewish democracy.”
Kerry’s statement shows his country’s intentions of using Palestinian and Arab agreement to the “land swap” principle as an entrance to gain their agreement to “resident exchange”, so that both would in the end lead to the complete “judaization” of the occupation state with Palestinian agreement and Arab blessing.
Kerry’s personal position and his country’s official position from the “Jewish identity” of the occupation state disqualify them as neutral and transparent mediators in the Arab Israeli conflict over Palestine.
PLO’s negotiator’s agreeing to “land swap” is practically an agreement to the violation of international law and the legitimacy of the UN which continue to be mentioned by this negotiator as reference for negotiations. Both prohibit annexing others’ land by force and they also prohibit the transfer of the population of the occupied territories or the transfer of the population of the occupying power to this land.
The negotiations’ goal behind agreeing to this principle is to gain Palestinian agreement to the legitimacy of annexing the illegal settlements in Palestinian land occupied in 1967 by force to the occupation state.
In case the PLO negotiator agreed to the idea of “resident exchange”, such agreement will mean an agreement to ethnic cleansing of Palestinian Arabs of 1948 and also the ethnic cleansing the occupation is planning in areas of high Arab density such as the Palestinian Triangle which it occupied in that year. Renewing his absolute refusal to the idea of people exchange and transferring the Triangle to the PA, President Mahmoud Abbas said on 9 January 2014 during a meeting he had recently with one of the Arab Knesset members that this idea has never been discussed in negotiations. He also renewed during the same meeting his refusal to recognize the “Jewish nature of Israel.”
But Haaretz newspaper in English said on Wednesday January 1 that Kerry, during his latest visit to Saudi Arabi and Jordan, requested that they “support the Palestinian Authority in recognizing Israel as a national country for the Jewish people.” On the previous day, Arab League’s Secretary General Nabil Alarabi announced that a ministerial delegation headed by Qatari Foreign Minister, which was formed by the Doha summit, will hold a meeting attended by Alarabi in Paris on Sunday, in the presence of Kerry, (the meeting was requested by the latter), who, according to Haaretz, expressed his hope to see some “positive signs” from the delegation in this regard, noting that this same delegation caused large Palestinian protests when it announced that it agrees to the idea of “land swap” during a previous visit to Washington.
Earlier, Maarif newspaper said that the occupation suggested to Kerry the transfer of Arab communities that are part of the Palestinian Triangle to the PA as part of land swap that puts Jewish settlements in the West Bank under Israeli power.
Occupation’s minister of foreign affairs, Avigdor Lieberman is one of the strongest advocates for this request. He justifies his request as being a transfer of borders rather than a transfer of people.
In an article he wrote in 2011, Palestinian researcher and lecturer at the Haifa University, Mohanad Mustafa, wrote “the Triangle is the only area inside the green line that enjoys four important qualities: Arab majority, territorial and geographical contiguity between the Arab communities, absence of serious Jewish strategic depth, and being adjacent to the Green Line”.
The Triangle is an example of what the Zionists have called a “demographic bomb”, “time bomb” or “collaborators” at the heart of the occupation state, as David Ben-Gurion, the first prime minister in the State of the occupation said.
Mohanad Mustafa says: “the demographic factor did not stop the occupation from annexing the Triangle as part of Rhodes agreement signed between Jordan and the occupation in 1949, as gaining a strategic depth was what made it decide on annexing it. Now it wants to give it up to gain a deeper strategic annexation that divides the proposed Palestinian state into two halves, a northern and southern that are connected by paved streets, bridges and tunnels, and perhaps railroads as well”.
Cities and villages the occupation is trying to move outside its borders include Kafr Qasim, Kafr Bara, Jaljuliya, Qalanswa, Tira, Tiba, Mguiblh, Sandaleh, Mayser, Western Barta, Ein Alsahla, Moawiya, Yema, Abthan, Marjah, Bear Alseka, Western Baqa – Jet, Kafr Kar’a, Ara – Arara, Salem, Zilpah, Msherfa, Musmus and Bayada, Um Alfahm, which are inhabited by 300 thousand Palestinians, in exchange for Palestinian agreement to annex large settlements, mainly those in Eastern Jerusalem, with all their settlers which are close to half a million people.
The new ethnic cleansing the occupation is now seeking under the pretext of “peace” means that any Palestinian agreement to it will also mean dropping Palestinian refugees’ right of return and the acceptance of those who will be transferred to the PA to giving up on their national rights of return and other rights, and agreement to violating the international law through agreeing to annex land that was seized by force to the country that occupied it and an agreement to violating the international law through agreeing to transfer people of an occupying power to the occupied land.
Agreeing to the Jewish identity of the occupation state automatically means agreeing to land and resident swap together, and vice versa.
This is a translation of the Arabic text publised in Felesteen newspaper on 10 January, 2014
The views expressed in this article belong to the author and do not necessarily reflect the editorial policy of Middle East Monitor.