22 February 2020 06:07 PM

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RANJAN SOLOMON | 6 FEBRUARY, 2020

A Call to Radical Comradeship with Palestinians after an Unjust ‘Deal’

Theocracy and democracy are a mismatch


These are ominous days for the Palestinians. A conceited and ignorant Jared Kushner sponsored by his father-in-law Donald Trump has delivered a disgusting, racist-criminal deal on the Palestinians.

There is sick humour in Kushner’s claim that he was qualified to do his job because he is knowledgeable and has read 25 books on Palestine-Israel. He argues that this knowledge conferred upon him the right to decide what is best for the region.

What a pompous and outrageous claim! What did he read? Who did he talk with? If he sincerely did any of the above, he’s certainly read the wrong stuff, and probably had one-dimensional deliberations with whoever he talked to.

Regardless of how he prepared himself, Kushner has perceptibly learned nothing. That simply explains the unjust and irrational ‘deal of the century’ so called, and his crude and insulting remarks about Palestinians.

The ‘deal of the century’ simply won’t work as Kushner and Trump intend it to. The repercussions of this externally imposed solution would be quite the opposite of what he has projected. Perhaps it would work in the instant political context, but most certainly not in the long run.

Israel could hardly survive as a Jewish democracy. Theocracy and democracy are a mismatch and Israel and Kushner’s USA cannot pull off this political dialectic with its political immorality by sheer brute force and an imprudently racist State founded on Zionist ideologies.

Democracies are pluralistic by definition. The monolithic political system the Zionists want to inflict on Palestinians will detonate in their own faces in time to come. Israel today is an overwhelming apartheid state and, by definition, a racist-colonialist construct.

The UN defines apartheid as practices which discriminate against one side of a populace in every arena of social, economic, and political life. Dozens of prevailing Israeli laws and policies institutionalize this prevailing system of racial discrimination and domination. Palestinians face discrimination in nearly every facet of life including freedom of movement, family, housing, education, essential health services, employment and other basic human rights.

There are detached legal regimes for Jewish Israelis and Palestinians living in the same area. For example, Jewish Israeli settlers living in the illegal Israeli settlements in the occupied West Bank are governed by Israeli civil law, while Palestinians also living in the occupied West Bank are governed by Israeli military law. Jewish Israelis and Palestinians are treated differentially. Segregation is carried out by implementing separate legal regimes for Jewish Israelis and Palestinians living in the same area.

Israeli governments regularly carry out various acts prohibited by the UN Apartheid Convention. The UK Charity ‘War on Want’ lists them:

. Forcible transfer of Palestinians to make way for illegal Israeli settlements

. Preventing Palestinians from returning to their homes and lands

. Systematic and severe deprivation of fundamental human rights of Palestinians based on their identity

. Denying Palestinians their right to freedom of movement and residence

. Murder, torture, unlawful imprisonment and other severe deprivation of physical liberty, especially of Palestinians living in Gaza

. Persecution of Palestinians because of their opposition to Apartheid.

History offers no example of dictatorships and counterfeit democracies being sustained. Their fundamentally flawed character, rooted in an unjust political framework, is bound to disintegrate and collapse sooner or later as the people revolt under the burden of injustices.

Apartheid in South Africa collapsed under its own yoke of inhumane acts committed in the context of an institutionalised regime of systematic oppression and domination by one “racial group” over another, committed with the intention of maintaining that regime.

Israel’s apartheid-like escapades may give those of its citizens who lean on the Zionist ideology the illusion that they can overpower and suppress Palestinian rights and aspirations forever. Is injustice a permanent state of being that Palestinians must learn to cope with?

Thomas Jefferson said that “when injustice becomes law, resistance becomes duty”. Injustice never rules forever. Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere. In the end injustice produces independence.

On Israel today, so much writing is communicated and controlled by a groupthink that demands silence on Palestine and Palestinians. Increasingly, the tragedy is that there is no conflict of narratives, each with their moral pivot.

Here is a military occupation enforced by a nuclear-armed power backed by the greatest military power on earth, and there is blockbuster injustice. Nothing happens when governments and NGOs call upon Israel to “respect human rights” in Palestine, because they all believe there’s nothing to fear, and nothing will change.

Events are happening on the sidelines. The noteworthy BDS campaign (Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions) is mounting successes day by day in cities and towns, trade unions and student bodies across the world.

Writer John Pilger anticipates in hope: “These are not straws in the wind… when the Palestinians rise again, as they will, they may not succeed at first, but they will eventually, if we understand that they are us, and we are them.”

Those who yearn for a just world must be guided by Che Guevara’s words: “If you tremble with indignation at every injustice then you are a comrade of mine.” Can we, the people of the world who believe in justice in our times, be the comrades that Palestine so urgently calls out for?

Ranjan Solomon is a commentator and activist on issues pertaining to the Question of Palestine.
 

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