By Khalid Amayreh in occupied Jerusalem
There are growing signs that Israel is traveling on a losing track. Indeed, with the prospects of finding a dignified, just and mutually-accepted settlement for the enduring Palestinian question nearly nonexistent, Israel is making sure that its future will be problematic, uncertain and even precarious.
True, Israel is militarily powerful and somewhat tightly controls the politics and policies of the United States, its guardian ally. However, the strategic value of the "American variable" or "American connection" is steadily becoming less certain and less than absolute in light of the progressive deterioration in America's global standing
Until a few years ago, the U.S. was thought of as a potentially positive force, a source of an absolute and matchless asset, facilitating rather than impeding the achievement of a prospective peace deal in the Middle East.
However, with the phenomenal domination of Zionist Jews of the American government, especially Congress, the U.S. seems to have become a handy tool in the hands of Zionist extremists pursuing maximalist goals in occupied Palestine, including the contemplated liquidation of the Palestine cause.
Hence, one would exaggerate little by saying that the U.S. has now a very limited ability to effect real change in the Middle East. One would even dare say that the U.S. is now a liability rather asset for efforts to effect real peace in the region.
There are those who argue that with the election of Barack Obama nearly three years ago, the U.S. took its best shot in the hope of being conceived as a fairer and more honest broker of the conflict between Israel and the Palestinians. However, with the pathetic retreat to the Jewish lobby's lap, Obama demonstrated to all and sundry the extreme difficulty, which borders on the impossible, of pursuing a truly independent Middle East policy based on a semblance of Justice and a simple fairness as well as vital American geopolitical interests.
More to the point, Obama's notorious reluctance to accentuate and assert the 1967-armistic line as the future boundaries between Israel and a prospective Palestinian state should be viewed as a forewarning to future American presidents which would make them think twice before entertaining the same idea once again.
With the scaled-down American ability to effect change, let alone issue orders and instructions, the fascist-minded forces in Israel are likely to have their way, at least for the foreseeable future. In other words, the genocidal and Nazi-like forces of Gush Emunim will continue to pursue and accelerate the process of ethnic cleansing all over occupied Palestine toward the creation of an Arab-free Jewish theocracy in which Talmudic edicts would be the law of the land.
According to the Talmud, non-Jews living under Jewish religious laws must be treated as water carriers or wood cutters, in other words slaves. Those refusing to submit would have to be violently expelled or slaughtered en mass.
The push toward genocidal religious fascism is guaranteed to reignite the flames of an internecine Jewish-Muslim conflict as never before. And in this case, new players would join the battle such as Iran and Turkey as well as new-old players such as Egypt .
Statehood efforts are irrelevant
The international media is focusing these days on the Palestinian leadership's efforts to achieve a statehood-status at the United Nations. However, a fleeting look at reality in occupied Palestine shows that the two-state solution is dead, which denotes the utter impossibility of establishing a viable and territorially contiguous Palestinian state that is worthy of the name.
Moreover, with the Israeli Jewish society continuing to drift to right-wing jingoism and religious fascism, it is greatly unlikely that any future Israeli government would agree to dismantling a significant number of Jewish colonies east of the erstwhile armistice line, let alone withdraw to the lines of the 4th of June, 1967.
This fact would bring Israel face to face with two fateful choices: either full-fledged apartheid rule in the West Bank, in other words, the continuation of the military occupation, possibly with a few medications that would make it more palatable and more manageable.
The other choice would be the annexation of all or most of the occupied territories, along with granting millions of Palestinians the right to vote. Israel might resort to manipulating this important variable in order to prevent "Arabs from taking over Israel." None the less, in the long run the democratic and demographic processes would have to take their full course, otherwise real trouble would ensue and the world community would probably identify with the Arabs' just demands and grievances.
Correspondingly, the Palestinians of the occupied territories and their brethren across the Green Line, who would form one solid electoral bloc, would pursue and expedite their democratic rights as meticulously and as vigorously as possible, including absolute equality with Jews as well as terminating the definition of Israel as a Jewish state.
Israel, or at least the fascist power centers in the Jewish state, would probably seek to affect more draconian "solutions" to get rid of the Palestinians once and for all. However, this wouldn't be easily done as said, given the potential, actual human, political and military price. Israel, after all, is a small island in the midst of an Arab-Muslim sea of 600-700 millions of Muslims and Arabs who will not accept a status of children of a lesser God.
Since its misbegotten birth, Israel has relied on military might almost exclusively in order to impose its will and gain the legitimacy of the fait accompli, and it is useless denying the fact that it has succeeded in snatching such legitimacy from the mouth of history.
However, it was understood from day-1, that the legitimacy of the fait accompli would be no substitute or even alternative for a moral legitimacy that is based on justice and truth.
Mahmoud Abbas may succeed or fail to obtain a statehood status at the United Nations. But that will be irrelevant, at least from the strategic view point, regardless of the outcome.
In the final analysis, Abbas and his Palestinian Authority are only a minor, even minute, factor in the forces lining up for the momentous and extended battle of Palestine.
He will be remembered as a sincere man who tried but failed to make peace with Israel, even at a terrible price, namely giving up more than 78% of historical Palestine.
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|William T. Hathaway|