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Israeli manipulation mirrors Balfour’s endeavours

British Prime Minister Theresa May (L) greets Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu outside 10 Downing street in London on 2 November 2017 [Kate Green/Anadolu Agency]

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s visit to London for the centenary commemoration of the Balfour Declaration included an interview with the BBC. It was made clear that both the one-state and the two-state scenarios are not what Netanyahu envisages as an outcome. The statements given during the interview should provide ample proof that deliberate diplomatic procrastination is the only favourable option for Israel, as during such delays it consolidates its colonial expansion with the intent of eliminating Palestine completely.

The two-state paradigm, which the international community has endorsed for the purported creation of “an independent, viable Palestinian state” was criticised by Netanyahu as vague. “The other state,” he explained, “if it’s not demilitarised, if it doesn’t recognise the State of Israel, which the Palestinians still refuse to do, then it merely becomes a platform for continuing the war against the one Jewish State.” Israel’s illegal settlements eating away at Palestinian territory on a daily basis, he insisted, are a “side-issue”.

As far as Israel is concerned, Palestinians should only exist within a limited framework that facilitates their own annihilation. “I think they should have all the powers to govern themselves and none of the powers to threaten us,” added Netanyahu.

Read: Why should Britain apologise for the Balfour Declaration?

The implications of the Prime Minister’s words should be reversed in order to analyse their implicit violence. Israel’s very foundation and existence is based upon such violent intent, terrorism and aggression. As such, its survival is dependent upon an extension of the same tactics which have been perfected and normalised to look like routine acts necessitating nothing more than condemnation without any repercussions for the perpetrators. Politically, that same violence has led to strategies encompassing the Palestinian leadership’s betrayal of its territory and people; this includes the endorsement of the two-state compromise.

Seen within the context of the Balfour Declaration, the two-state paradigm is another example of how ambiguities were ultimately constructed into benefits for colonial plunder. In the same way, proponents of the one-state or two-state possibilities are immersed within the same predicament. The two-state imposition, endorsed by the international community and yet declared obsolete by the so-called Middle East Quartet, is vague for both Israel and Palestine. The difference lies in how the ambiguities are translated into benefits for Israel, rather than favouring the colonised Palestinians in their quest for autonomy.

Meanwhile, the one-state notion, which is gaining tract as an alternative based upon democratic principles, has been rejected by Netanyahu. If implemented, though, there is a chance that it would reflect the colonial narrative instead of enshrining Palestinian rights, the reason being that political uncertainty for Palestinians consolidates territorial expansion for Israel. A single state without decolonisation will, in that case, become a reflection of Israel’s current demands.

For Netanyahu, paradigms lacking specifics are an ideal platform. If, one hundred years ago, a declaration paved the way for Palestine’s plunder, the current impasse, particularly the lack of defined objectives, is part of a solution for Israel. The ideal scenario for Netanyahu is, obviously, the geophysical elimination of Palestine; that is, after all, a mainstream Zionist objective. Contrary to the implication of his BBC interview, there is no existential threat and no war against Israel.

As long as decolonisation is not given a political platform – a step which would propel the Palestinians’ right to resist Israel’s military occupation away from the confines of international law and into practice – Israel can refute any purported solution at leisure, since the lack of clarity will ensure that any hypothetical implementation conforms to its demands. In that sense, Israel’s manipulation of the current situation mirrors the objectives and endeavours inherent in Balfour’s infamous century-old letter.

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  • ricck lineheart

    The Palestinians should all receive Reparation$ for all the damage these people have suffered under the Israeli regime and Israel needs to STOP .

    • kirby1

      Let the Palestinians start by paying their electric bill.

      Israeli “brutal occupation” had led to dramatic improvements in general well-being, placing the population of the territories ahead of most of their Arab neighbors.
      a. Life expectancy increased from 48 to 82,
      b. Infant mortality decreased by 75%,
      c. Employment increased significantly,
d. Average income increased significantly, more than in adjacent Arab states.
e. Per capital GDP increased significantly, more than in adjacent Arab states except for those with oil income.
f. The number of Arab houses with running water increased significantly,
g. The number of Arab houses with electricity increased significantly,
h. The number of Arab homes cooking with electricity and gas increased significantly
i. Before the Israeli liberation, the number of colleges or universities was zero, afterwards seven.
j.. Literacy increased significantly.
      In the economic sphere, most of this progress was the result of access to the far larger and more advanced Israeli economy: the number of Palestinians working in Israel rose from zero in 1967 to 66,000 in 1975 and 109,000 by 1986, accounting for 35 percent of the employed population of the West Bank and 45 percent in Gaza. Close to 2,000 industrial plants, employing almost half of the work force, were established in the territories under Israeli rule.
      During the 1970’s, the West Bank and Gaza constituted the fourth fastest-growing economy in the world — ahead of such “wonders” as Singapore, Hong Kong, and Korea, and substantially ahead of Israel itself. Although GNP per capita grew somewhat more slowly, the rate was still high by international standards, with per-capita GNP expanding tenfold between 1968 and 1991 from $165 to $1,715 (compared with Jordan’s $1,050, Egypt’s $600, Turkey’s $1,630, and Tunisia’s $1,440). By 1999, Palestinian per-capita income was nearly double Syria’s, more than four times Yemen’s, and 10 percent higher than Jordan’s (one of the better off Arab states). Only the oil-rich Gulf states and Lebanon were more affluent.

      • ricck lineheart

        I first seen this article about 4 years ago its truly a piece of hit work coming off the Israeli Press and contradicts most anything on the real news coming from the region . Israel is the most destabilizing block in Middle east peace regardless of what the hit piece says .

        • kirby1

          Arab Muslims ethnic cleansing:
          From 1910 to 2010, the percentage of the Middle Eastern population that was Christian in Arab countries continued to decline; once 14 percent of the population, Christians now make up roughly 4 percent. (In Iran and Turkey, they’re all but gone.) In Lebanon, the only country in the region where Christians hold significant political power, their numbers have shrunk over the past century, to 34 percent from 78 percent of the population.