Posts Tagged ‘Israel’

The Palestinians will not find peace through bloodshed

07/02/2011, 02:00:43 PM

by Dan McCurry

Malcolm X once told black Americans, “You didn’t land on Plymouth Rock; Plymouth Rock landed on you”.

Millions of people from the developing world have risked their lives to get to the West, while the Palestinians had the western world come to them, in the form of Israel. But where this should have been an opportunity, it was more like a great big rock landing on them. They were simply unable to cope.

The photo shows me, in 1986, with one foot in Israel and one foot in Egypt. My anxiety is due to the barbed wire getting caught on my T-shirt. Back then there was no border on the West Bank, never mind a wall. Palestinians were free to come and go across Israel. They worked, they travelled, they engaged in politics. There was violence, but there was also optimism. Then came the suicide bombers.

The word “solution” in the phrase “two-state solution” is misleading. It suggests that the problems will end if property and land rights are settled. It does not promise to create jobs or prosperity for the Palestinians, but it does promise to end any further justification for Palestinian violence.

It was a top-down policy, insisted on by the international community. It created trepidation in the West Bank, with graffiti appearing on walls calling for a one-state solution. The Palestinians want jobs, but the solution seems to promise a permanent partition, with a permanent separation wall. Washington’s policy was never born from reading the writing on the wall.

Wherever I went in Israel, in the 80s, the building sites were full of Arabs. I asked an Israeli if this was somehow racist. He told me that Israelis wanted to get into construction, but the Palestinians wouldn’t let them in. Today, construction workers are imported from Asia. Technology companies adopt restrictive employment policies for “security reasons”. The Israeli economy is being denied to the “ungrateful” Palestinians. (more…)

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Ed Miliband’s Israel problem, by Dan Hodges

19/10/2010, 09:00:28 AM

Ed Miliband has an Israel problem. Or, depending on your perspective, Israel has a problem with Ed Miliband.

The response to the foreign affairs section of his conference speech was dominated by Iraq. His brother’s angry reaction, which in truth reflected David’s personal antipathy towards Harriet, as much as his distaste for that particular passage, led the news bulletins. But it was the section on Israel that reverberated.

“The new generation must challenge old thinking”, he said. And duly hurled down the gauntlet. There needed to be international pressure on Israel over the ending of the moratorium on settlements. The attack on the Gaza flotilla was wrong. Israel must accept and recognize, in actions not just words, the Palestinian right to statehood. The Gaza blockage must be lifted. He would “strain every sinew to make that happen”. He would, of course, always defend Israel’s right to exist in peace and security. (more…)

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