Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu used his Facebook page on Tuesday to insist that he refuses to advance the peace process with the Palestinians. Netanyahu was seeking to counter remarks made by Israel’s president, Shimon Peres, about Palestinians and the PA president Mahmoud Abbas being a good partner in the peace process.
“Away from the voices which I have heard recently, which incite me to go ahead with more concessions and recessions, I think that I have to deal responsibly and without fear with the peace process,” said Netanyahu. “I have to be wise, otherwise a third Iranian terrorist base would be built here, in the heart of the country. Peace can only be achieved when safety is achieved.”
Netanyahu fears Hamas control over the PA. “Anyone can recognise that Hamas is able to control the PA, either before or after a peace settlement,” he said.
Meanwhile, Likud’s most far-right figure, Moshe Feiglin, has proposed the expulsion of Palestinians from the West Bank in order to “impose Israeli sovereignty beyond the Green Line [the 1949 Armistice Line]”. Feiglin, who earlier on Tuesday was detained by police after trying to pray in Al-Aqsa Mosque, proposed paying Palestinians to leave their land.
“The State of Israel is paying 10 per cent of its GNP every year for the two-state solution and the Oslo Accords,” he claimed. “It is paying for separation fences, Iron Domes and a guard at every café. Soon we will have to place Iron Domes in every school in Tel Aviv.” Using the budget set aside for such considerations, said Feiglin, Israel could give every Arab family in “Judea and Samaria” [the occupied West Bank] $500,000 to encourage their migration. “You may say, ‘But no one will have them.’ That is not true because the Western nations are shrinking due to low birth rates. The question is whether the world will have Sudanese migrants who cannot build or migrants from ‘Judea and Samaria’ who do know how to build.” He was referring to the fact that many Palestinians have helped to build the very settlements which threaten their existence.
One London-based commentator pointed out that Netanyahu’s and Feiglin’s statements indicate that both men are well aware that Israel’s brutal military occupation is unsustainable in the 21st century. “Feiglin is clearly a racist,” said MEMO’s Senior Editor, Ibrahim Hewitt, “while Netanyahu is trying to maintain a climate of fear within Israel in order to justify the unjustifiable.” The reality, he suggested, is that the Israeli prime minister probably agrees with Feiglin on the need for more land without any Palestinians living on it, while having no intention of allowing a viable Palestinian state to come into being alongside Israel. “Netanyahu will repeat the ‘security’ mantra ad nauseam, America will continue to supply Israel with weapons, and ever-expanding Israeli settlements will continue to eat up occupied Palestine,” warned Hewitt. “The UN can give ‘Palestine’ as much recognition as it wants, but unless something is done to stop Israel’s illegal activities, it will all be meaningless hot air.”