Israel Prepares For Annexation Of The West Bank
Above photo: A picture taken on September 27, 2018 shows the Israeli settlement of Neve Yaakov (foreground) in the northern area of east Jerusalem and the Palestinian neighborhood of al-Ram (background) in the West Bank. Ahmad Gharabli/AFP/Getty Images.
Since the election of Donald Trump in 2016, Israel and its global lobbies have had an extraordinary run of success.
In the US and Canada, the passage of laws against the BDS movement; US recognition of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital and the shifting of the embassy there; the appointment of an ambassador who is no more than Israel’s point man in Washington; the Kushner plan and US acceptance of Israeli annexation of the West Bank; and in the UK, the defeat of Jeremy Corbyn, partly if not largely based on a slanderous campaign launched against the Labor Party generally and Corbyn personally.
This was the most malicious political assassination in British history, with the corporate media and the Zionist lobby driving in the knives day after day. The main Jewish newspapers had already maligned Corbyn in the same front page editorial when the chief rabbi, Ephraim Mirvis, used the Corbyn-hating Times to attack Corbyn as “mendacious” and to plant fear amongst British Jews: “What will become of Jews and Judaism in Britain if the Labor Party forms the next government?” Nothing would happen, of course, not to British Jews, but there would be significant changes affecting Britain’s relations with the racist settler enterprise it established in Palestine more than a century ago.
These attacks were not about Judaism but Israel. Jeremy Corbyn is not an anti-Semite. This is so obvious that it should not need saying. The false charge of anti-Semitism is the weapon used by Zionists throughout modern history to destroy critics of Israel and here it was being used again.
Had Corbyn expressed undying support for Israel—as Keir Starmer has since done—this issue would never have arisen. Jews inside and outside the Labor Party would have issued statements that while there were bad apples in every barrel, anti-Semitism was a minor issue which the party leadership was dealing with. They would not have hesitated to canvass votes for the Labor Party.
Corbyn has a lifelong record of defending human rights everywhere and that includes the human rights of the Palestinians. Had he been elected he would have re-orientated foreign policy in their favor. That had to be prevented at all costs and the accusation of anti semitism was the weapon used, on the grounds that repeated often enough people would believe it.
Thus a good man with good policies was thrown aside and a buffoon with no policies installed in his place. In time, once they realize they were duped, the British people may remember the knifing of Corbyn by the Zionists.
Now Israel is moving on to its next success, the annexation of the West Bank. This is due to begin on July 1, Netanyahu and Gantz having agreed on its fundamentals and the US ready to rubber-stamp whatever portion of territory they decide to take.
Initially, this seems to be 30 percent plus the Jordan Valley. The 70 percent ostensibly left to the Palestinians will mostly consist mostly of rural land running alongside the border with Jordan.
The Trump-Kushner ‘peace’ plan was deliberately written to be unacceptable to the Palestinians, all of them, including the now-embittered Mahmud Abbas. His ‘threats’ to rip up all accords if they go ahead is no more than the squeaking of a rusty wheel. He used the Zionists and they used him. Now he has been discarded, Mahmud Abbas is of no relevance to anyone.
In the soundings he would have taken before his plan was released, Kushner would have known perfectly well that the Palestinians would never accept it. No capital in Jerusalem, disarmament in Gaza as well as on the West Bank, Israel in charge of ‘security’ and all borders, no right of return, no more legal claims against Israel on the basis of history, no independent foreign policy, no joining of any international organization except with Israel’s approval, no more payments to the families of martyrs (Israel’s ‘terrorists’) and the acceptance of Israel as a Jewish state. This was the price demanded of the Palestinians in return for their ‘state’ and as Kushner well knew, they could not possibly pay it. His plan was designed from the start to be rejected by the Palestinians.
Even if they had accepted this ‘deal,’ every loophole had been inserted into it to make sure Israel ultimately gets what it wants—all of the West Bank -– anyway. This situation, of an offer they could not possibly accept, is one imposed on them throughout their modern history. When they reject what they cannot possibly accept, whether it be the Peel partition plan of 1937, the UN partition plan of 1947, the establishment of Israel on their land in 1948 or the Camp David plan of the 1990s, it is they who are made to shoulder the blame for the failure of the latest ‘peace process.’ If there is a difference now, it is that the Kushner-Trump-Netanyahu plan is so transparently shoddy that anyone with eyes in their head can see right through it.
With increasing portions of the West Bank annexed, under the false sovereignty of an occupying power, the Palestinians will eventually be outnumbered by the settlers poured into their land. This is the script being written by Netanyahu and his cohorts. A racist parliament will endorse it and even more pseudo-legal and practical obstacles will be raised to make life even more unbearable for the Palestinians.
This is a heinous plan, a plan devoid of any legality, a plan cooked up by criminals and charlatans. The Zionists may see it as the end of the road but this is a long war and annexation is no more than another milestone in the struggle against the takeover of Palestine by European colonists in the 20th century.
Jeremy Salt has taught at the University of Melbourne, Bosporus University (Istanbul) and Bilkent University (Ankara), specialising in the modern history of the Middle East. His publications include “The Unmaking of the Middle East. A History of Western Disorder in Arab Lands” (Berkeley: University of California Press, 2008.) His latest book is “The Last Ottoman Wars. The Human Cost 1877-1923“ (Salt Lake City: University of Utah Press, 2019).