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    Israel land grab law 'ends hope of two-state solution' (OP)


    Salaam

    With Trump in power, Netanyahu has a free hand.


    Israel land grab law 'ends hope of two-state solution'


    Land grab law 'allows theft, stalls peace process'

    Law that retroactively legalises settler homes on private Palestinian land widely condemned as legitimising theft.


    Israel's land grab law that retroactively legalises thousands of settlement homes in the occupied West Bank legitimises theft, violates international law and ends the prospect of a two-state solution, according to politicians, legal experts and human rights groups.

    The so-called "Regulation Bill" instantly drew wide condemnation as it was voted in by members of the Knesset late on Monday with a 60 to 52 majority.

    The law applies to about 4,000 settlement homes in the West Bank for which settlers could prove ignorance that they had built on privately owned Palestinian land and had received encouragement from the Israeli state to do so.

    Three Israeli NGOs - Peace Now, Yesh Din and the Association for Civil Rights in Israel - and numerous Palestinians said they intend to petition the Supreme Court to cancel the law.

    UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres said on Tuesday in a statement: "This bill is in contravention of international law and will have far reaching legal consequences for Israel."

    The EU's foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini said in a statement that the bloc "condemns" the law and urges against its implementation "to avoid measures that further raise tensions and endanger the prospects for a peaceful solution to the conflict".

    Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas said the law was an aggression against the Palestinian people.

    "That bill is contrary to international law," Abbas said following a meeting with French President Francois Hollande in Paris. "This is an aggression against our people that we will be opposing in international organisations.

    "What we want is peace ... but what Israel does is to work toward one state based on apartheid."

    Hollande called on Israel to go back on the law, saying it would "pave the way for an annexation, de-facto, of the occupied territories, which would be contrary to the two-state solution".

    Hours before Abbas' meeting with Hollande, Saeb Erekat, secretary general of the Palestinian Liberation Organisation, told the Associated Press news agency that the law puts "the last nail in the coffin of the two-state solution".

    Calling the move "theft", Erekat said the ruling showed "the Israeli government trying to legalise looting Palestinian land".

    The Arab League also accused Israel of "stealing the land" from Palestinians.

    "The law in question is only a cover for stealing the land and appropriating the property of Palestinians," said the head of the Cairo-based organisation, Ahmed Aboul Gheit.

    Palestinian owners will be compensated financially or with other land, but cannot negotiate their terms.

    The law is a continuation of "Israeli policies aimed at eliminating any possibility of a two-state solution and the establishment of an independent Palestinian state", Aboul Gheit said.

    Jordan, one of the few Arab states to have diplomatic ties with Israel, also denounced what it called "a provocative law likely to kill any hope of a two-state solution".

    According to the UN envoy for the Middle East peace process, Nickolay Mladenov, the law crosses a "very thick red line" towards annexation of the occupied West Bank, and sets a "very dangerous precedent".

    Speaking to the AFP news agency, he said: "This is the first time the Israeli Knesset legislates in the occupied Palestinian lands and particularly on property issues."

    He also raised the possibility the law could open Israel up to potential prosecution at the International Criminal Court, a threat Israel's own top government lawyer, attorney general Avichai Mandelblit, has also warned of.

    Mladenov called for strong international condemnation of the legislation but declined to criticise the US after President Donald Trump's administration refused to comment on it.

    Trump is more sympathetic to Israel's settlement policies than previous US presidents; the Israeli government has approved plans to build thousands of new homes on occupied territory since the far-right leader settled into the White House.

    "I think that is a very preliminary statement," Mladenov said. "Obviously they do need to consult, this is a new administration that has just come into office and they should be given the time and the space to find their policies."

    White House spokesman Sean Spicer said the US was likely to discuss the law with Netanyahu when the Israeli prime minister visits on February 15, but did not comment further in a press briefing on Tuesday.

    David Harris, head of AJC, the global Jewish advocacy organisation, said that "Israel's High Court can and should reverse this misguided legislation" ahead of Netanyahu's meeting with Trump in February.

    That was also the message from Defence Minister Avigdor Lieberman, who said last week: "The chance that it will be struck down by the Supreme Court is 100 percent."

    'Against all international laws'

    International law considers all settlements to be illegal, but Israel distinguishes between those it sanctions and those it does not, dubbed outposts.

    A Palestinian Cabinet minister also called on the international community for support.

    "Nobody can legalise the theft of the Palestinian lands. Building settlements is a crime, building settlements is against all international laws," said Palestinian Tourism and Antiquities Minister Rula Maayaa. "I think it is time now for the international community to act concretely to stop the Israelis from these crimes."

    Nabil Abu Rdeneh, a spokesman for Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, called the law "unacceptable" and urged the international community to act immediately.

    "This is an escalation that would only lead to more instability and chaos," Rdeneh said.

    Palestinians want the occupied West Bank, east Jerusalem and the Gaza Strip - territories Israel occupied in the 1967 Middle East war - for their future state.

    The international community views settlements as illegal and an obstacle to reaching peace.

    Shortly before leaving office, US President Barack Obama allowed the UN Security Council to pass a resolution declaring settlements illegal.

    Tobias Ellwood, Britain's Middle East minister, also condemned the land grab bill, saying it "is of great concern that the bill paves the way for significant growth in settlements deep in the West Bank".

    Yuval Shany, an international law professor at the Hebrew University in Jerusalem, said the law violates basic rights, interferes with property rights and is discriminatory because it regulates only the transfer of land from Palestinians to Jews.

    http://www.aljazeera.com/news/2017/02/israel-land-grab-law-ends-hope-state-solution-170207143602924.html
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    Re: Israel land grab law 'ends hope of two-state solution'

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    Quote Originally Posted by Freedom View Post
    I hope the 20+ Arab countries in the region welcome the Palestinians. An Israeli land grab is the only peaceful way to end this conflict. Seeing as Palestinians are not distinct from Jordanians or other Levantines, I think Jordan or Syria would be good places for them. The Israelis and the Kurds are the only people in the Middle East who deserve our support.



    You trolling. . . . . . ?

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    Re: Israel land grab law 'ends hope of two-state solution'

    Quote Originally Posted by Freedom View Post
    I hope the 20+ Arab countries in the region welcome the Palestinians. An Israeli land grab is the only peaceful way to end this conflict. Seeing as Palestinians are not distinct from Jordanians or other Levantines, I think Jordan or Syria would be good places for them. The Israelis and the Kurds are the only people in the Middle East who deserve our support.
    And if the Palestinians won't peacefully go away and instead choose to resist being peacefully ethnically cleansed, I suppose they are at fault for there not being peace, eh?

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    Re: Israel land grab law 'ends hope of two-state solution'


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    Re: Israel land grab law 'ends hope of two-state solution'

    Salaam

    More comment

    Sixty dead in Gaza and the end of Israeli conscience

    When will the moment come in which the mass killing of Palestinians matters anything to the right? When will the moment come in which the massacre of civilians shocks at least the left-center? If 60 people slain don't do it, perhaps 600? Will 6,000 jolt them?

    When will the moment come in which a pinch of human feeling arises, if only for a moment, toward the Palestinians? Sympathy? At what moment will someone call a halt, and suggest compassion, without being branded an eccentric or an Israel hater?

    When will there be a moment in which someone admits that the slaughterer has, after all, some responsibility for the slaughter, not only the slaughtered, who are of course responsible for their own slaughter?

    Sixty people killed didn't matter to anyone - perhaps 600 would? How about 6,000? Will Israel find all the excuses and justifications then also? Will the blame be laid on the slain people and their "dispatchers" even then, and not a word of criticism, mea culpa, sorrow, pity or guilt will be heard?

    On Monday, when the death count spiked alarmingly, Jerusalem celebrated the embassy and Tel Aviv rejoiced over Eurovision, it seemed that such a moment will never come again. The Israeli brain has been washed irrevocably, the heart sealed for good. The life of a Palestinian is no longer deemed to be worth anything.

    If 60 stray dogs were shot to death in one day by IDF soldiers, the whole country would raise an outcry. The dog slaughterers would be put on trial, the nation of Israel would have devoted prayers to the victims, a Yizkor service would be said for the dogs slaughtered by Israel.

    But on the night of the Palestinians' slaughter, Zion rejoiced and was jubilant: We have an embassy and a Eurovision. It's difficult to think of a more atrocious moral eclipse. Neither is it difficult to imagine the reverse scenario: 60 Israelis are killed in one day and the crowds celebrate the embassy in Ramallah and rejoice over a concert in El Bireh to cheer the winning of the Arab "A Star is Born," while television hosts and interviewees giggle during the live broadcasts. Oh, those Palestinian animals, oh, the monsters.

    On the eve of this black Monday, I found myself sitting in one of the television studios beside a giggling right-winger. Giggling isn't the right term, he was bursting with laughter. It made him laugh so hard, the mass killing, and he found it even funnier that someone was appalled by it. Israel Hayom opened with the "Shehecheyanu" blessing in its main headline about another matter, unaware of the dark irony. Yedioth Ahronoth held a learned discussion over whether Hamas leaders should be eliminated now or not, who's in favor of the murder and who's against it. Imagine a discussion in a Palestinian newspaper: for and against murdering Gadi Eizenkot.

    The truth is that Israel is well prepared to massacre hundreds and thousands, and to expel tens of thousands. Nothing will stop it. This is the end of conscience, the show of morality is over. The last few days' events have proved it decisively. The tracks have been laid, the infrastructure for the horror has been cast. Dozens of years of brainwashing, demonization and dehumanization have borne fruit. The alliance between the politicians and the media to suppress reality and deny it has succeeded. Israel is set to commit horrors. Nobody will stand in its way any longer. Not from within or from without.

    Apart from the usual lip service, the Trump-era world won't lift a finger, even when Gaza becomes, heaven forbid, Rwanda. Even then our observers and analysts will recite that the IDF has accomplished its goals, that the IDF displayed restraint, that it's the most moral and "what would you suggest doing instead?"

    The chief of staff would be crowned man of the year, the moderate, good man, the opposition would tweet their applause. In the town square the "leftist" singer's victory will be celebrated, nobody would even think of canceling the party going on, or at least set aside a moment for the dead.

    We're already there. That moment is here. Rwanda is coming to Gaza and Israel is celebrating. Two million human beings we've imprisoned already, and their fate matters to no one. The pictures that occasionally flicker of children without electricity and parents without water, of crippled people being shot to death and of leg amputees, all children of refugees from the 1948 disaster we landed on their heads.

    What has that to do with us? It's Hamas' fault. Sixty individuals killed in one day, and not a shred of sorrow has been sighted in Israel. From now on, it never will be.

    http://johnpilger.com/articles/sixty-dead-in-gaza-and-the-end-of-israeli-conscience

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    Re: Israel land grab law 'ends hope of two-state solution'

    Quote Originally Posted by Futuwwa View Post
    And if the Palestinians won't peacefully go away and instead choose to resist being peacefully ethnically cleansed, I suppose they are at fault for there not being peace, eh?
    Correct. I have no sympathy for them.

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    Re: Israel land grab law 'ends hope of two-state solution'

    Salaam

    Heh whats happened to the quality of hasbra trolling? They don't even make a effort anymore.

    The sociopaths at the Economist weigh in with their 'considered' opinion.



    The Economist’s front page betrayed the victims of Gaza. But the truth is much stronger.


    The Economist’s latest front cover shows a provocative image of a young boy firing a slingshot. It leads with the headline: Gaza: There is a better way.

    Social media has now responded to this naked bias, saying: ‘Yes, there is a better way’.

    “Fixed it!”

    On 14 May, Israeli troops killed at least 60 Palestinian protesters. The extent of the violence was so great that, on 18 May, the UN Human Rights Council (UNHRC) voted to investigate violations of international law in Gaza. It suggested that Israel’s actions were “wholly disproportionate”.

    In response to the Economist‘s front cover, Media Lens had the perfect response on Twitter:



    There has been widespread condemnation of the violence. Because over 2,400 people were injured as the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) opened fire. Children and a baby are among the dead and injured. But Israel and the US have defended the violence. And the Economist‘s original cover plays straight into the Israeli-US narrative: that Palestinians (and specifically Hamas) were somehow to blame for Israel’s slaughter of civilians.

    https://www.thecanary.co/trending/2018/05/21/the-economists-front-page-betrayed-the-victims-of-gaza-but-the-truth-is-much-stronger/

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    Re: Israel land grab law 'ends hope of two-state solution'

    Salaam

    Another opinion piece. More bad news, but at least the mask is coming off.

    Trump, Israel and the Gulf States prepare to destroy the Palestinian cause


    Veteran Arab journalist Abdel Bari Atwan argues that last week’s celebrations of the transfer of the US embassy to occupied Jerusalem were a crucial first step in implementing the so-called “Deal of the Century” which the Trump administration hopes will result in the final collapse of the Palestinian cause.

    By rushing to relocate the embassy, and timing the move to coincide with the anniversary of the Nakba, the US and Israel were launching a “trial balloon” to gauge Arab and international reactions prior to unveiling this “deal.”

    Regrettably, the reaction was very muted in most of the occupied Palestinian territories other than the Gaza Strip, where mass demonstrations were held for six consecutive weeks in which more than 100 people were killed and 3,000 people injured by Israeli sniper bullets. The same can be said of the response from most Arab and Islamic capitals.

    The “leaking process” aimed at marketing the deal in advance began via the Associated Press news agency, which quoted five anonymous US officials as saying that President Donald Trump plans to unveil his plan – drawn up chiefly by his son-in-law Jared Kushner and “peace” envoy Jason Greenblatt under the direct supervision of Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu — in late June after the end of Ramadan.

    The official Arab reaction to the embassy move and the Israeli massacre in Gaza was not only muted but complicit, suggesting that the US’s main Arab allies – especially Egypt, Jordan and most of the Gulf states – are aware of the details of the forthcoming American plan. They failed to call for an emergency Arab summit in response, and their attendance at the Islamic summit convened by Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan was (with the exception of Jordan) notably low-level, with most of the Gulf states (other than Kuwait) represented by their foreign ministers.

    The fact that the Arab states which have formal diplomatic relations with Israel (Egypt and Jordan) did not dare recall their ambassadors or expel Israeli diplomats from their capitals in protest — even though such measures were taken by non-Arab countries like Turkey, Bolivia, South Africa, Ireland and Belgium — is significant. It could presage some shocking developments in the months to come.

    Meanwhile, Egyptian President Abdel Fattah as-Sisi summoned Hamas leader Ismail Haniyeh from Gaza to Cairo – sending a private plane to pick him and his delegation up at al-Arish airport — in an attempt to persuade them, at the request of the US, to put an end to the Return Marches and calm the situation down in the Gaza Strip, and also to discuss proposals for a ten-year truce with Israel. Some Hamas insiders began leaking word that some kind of agreement, which would result in the lifting of the siege on Gaza, could be on the cards.

    Carrot and stick

    The US and its Arab clients are pursuing a carrot-and-stick approach towards the Palestinians, or rather towards their leaders in the West Bank and Gaza Strip. The stick is to cut off financial aid and tighten the siege, and the carrot is the promise of Arab and Western cash for the Occupied Territories as payback for relinquishing Jerusalem and the Right to Return and for not opposing the deal.

    Sisi’s unexpected and unprecedented decision to reopen the Rafah border crossing to Gaza for the duration of Ramadan was intended to pave the way for an accord under which the March of Return protests would be halted or scaled down, while popular anger would be assuaged by the prospect of improved living conditions.

    That, at least, is the idea, after Gaza’s inhabitants, at Hamas’ urging, spoiled the embassy celebrations and exposed the ugly terrorist face of Israel. But things might not go to plan if the Hamas leadership refuses to take the American carrot being presented to it on an Arab plate. It could go either way: there is a strong current within Hamas that advocates opposition.

    The details that have been leaked so far about the substance of Trump’s deal speak of enlarging the Gaza Strip by incorporating 720 square kilometres of Egypt’s Sinai Peninsula, perhaps including the towns of al-Arish and Sheikh Zuweida, where a port and airport would be built. In return, Egypt would obtain an equivalent area of occupied Palestinian territory in the Naqab desert.

    Meanwhile, the envisaged ultra-modern mega-city of Neom would be built in the Egyptian-Jordanian-Saudi border area, attracting $500 billion of investment, providing ample employment and attracting additional indirect investment into the Egyptian economy. The West Bank, for its part, is offered no more than “economic peace” plus improved self-administration conditions.

    The big stick being wielded by the US is the threat to deprive the Palestinian Authority (PA) of financial aid if it declines to go along with this plan. It has already had $200 million frozen from this year’s budget, plus another $65 million withheld from UNRWA’s budget.

    The cut-off of all financial support to Jordan from the Gulf states has the same objective: to put pressure on the country, and on its resident Palestinians, to either accept the deal or put up with the consequences. The process of trying to marginalise Jordan and its role began some time ago and is set to intensify.

    Media campaign


    In the Gulf states, meanwhile, there has been an escalating media campaign aimed at vilifying the Palestinian people in the eyes of the public – including by depicting them as having sold their land to the Israelis and so being undeserving of support. The “electronic army” of Gulf state social media propagandists has been fully enlisted in this controlled and coordinated campaign, as have prominent pro-regime writers, in parallel with the gradual process of normalisation with Israel.

    This, too, is part of Gulf regimes’ contribution to easing the way for Trump’s deal. So was the arrest of five Saudi male and female activists who were known for their opposition to normalisation. More such moves can be expected.

    To this must be added the targeting of the Resistance Axis region-wide – the attacks on Iranian positions in Syria by Israeli warplanes and missiles, the imposition of sanctions on Hezbollah’s Hassan Nasrallah and nine other party leaders, and the placing of the party’s political and military wings alike on the “terrorist” list. All these measures fall in line with US steps to impose the “deal of the century,” exploiting the current weakness of the Arab and Islamic worlds as a historic opportunity that will not recur.

    It will be no surprise if Israel soon announces its acceptance of the Saudi-authored Arab Peace Initiative of 2002 – minus its key provisions, of course, and with the status of occupied Jerusalem having been settled and taken off the table of any future negotiations. We may also see exchanges of visits between Gulf Arab and Israeli officials after Ramadan.

    It seems we are set for a summer of normalisation, as the wraps are lifted from this cynical deal.

    https://5pillarsuk.com/2018/05/25/tr...stinian-cause/

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    Re: Israel land grab law 'ends hope of two-state solution'

    Trump's "Deal of the Century" isn't going to be worth the paper it's written on. He may be able to coerce the Palestinian Authority to sign the agreement, but the PA won't have any standing to implement or impose it onto its constituents. If anything, it might lead to its final collapse or slide into irrelevancy. Israel would have to do the imposition, which effectively means full military occupation again, back to square one. Nor would Israel be particularly likely to gain any additional internationally recognized legitimacy for it, if the deal has come about in such a way.

    The Deal of the Century will blow up in Trump's face. The Arab regimes he has currently herded together for the purpose are temporary, and so are their interest in going along with it. As long as support for the Palestinian cause runs broad and deep in Arab civil society, the compliance of said Arab regimes with the deal isn't going to last. US influence in the Middle East is going to end up in shreds. Spasiba, says Putin.

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