Opinion and Editorial

KT edit: Palestinians been betrayed again

Filed on November 19, 2019 | Last updated on November 19, 2019 at 07.22 pm

The West Bank and Gaza are about the Palestinian people, the victims who languish as hope ebbs.

To make an illegal occupation normal is a crime. To make illegal settlements legal is a greater crime. The original crime and grave injustice meted out to Palestine only grows bigger and consumes the world's conscience. But conscience brings little solace, which should make us cower in shame. The West Bank and Gaza are about the Palestinian people, the victims who languish as hope ebbs. More indignity is heaped on them from the only global power that can ensure and enforce peace in the region. It's akin to rubbing salt on the wounds of a people who have suffered enough death, destruction, and displacement for over seven decades . But the US has done both by now breaking with a 40-year convention.

It has gone its own way - with Israel, its ally in the Middle East and the perpetrator of these crimes against humanity. Denying the Palestinians a country, their rights and dignity, and allowing the Zionist regime to create a new state for the Jews in 1948 will remain a blot on world history. The West will have to answer for that blunder that has thrown Palestinian lives asunder. Millions of them have suffered persecution in their own land and in various countries as refugees.

Palestine was wiped off the map when the British mandate expired on May 14, 1948. The proclamation of the formation of the State of Israel was an act of betrayal, first by the British, then by the United States. More so because the US quickly recognised the Zionist regime once the British exited. Peace has eluded the region since then. Three wars have been fought to take back Palestinian land from the occupier who believes it is gaining legitimacy in the eyes of the world; a two-state solution was put forth, but the Israeli settlement expansion continues. The world tried the diplomatic route to prevent Jewish encroachments into Palestinian land but has failed. The truth is, Israel continues to flout international law because it has the United States on its side. Since 1968, Israel has violated 32 UN resolutions that have condemned successive governments for a host of violations.

A glimmer of hope came in 1993 with the Camp David Accords between the Israelis and the Palestinians (then PLO) led by Yasser Arafat. The Palestinians were soon in charge of the West Bank and Gaza, but the settlement issue was not resolved, nor was the status of Jerusalem. With the current US administration openly backing PM Benjamin Netanyahu, even the pretence of peace is lost. Seven decades have diluted it. And the US has ground it to the dust.




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