Some people, due to old habits or because of their inability to perceive change, or because of their isolation from reality, are still contemplating how to label the current situation in Palestine. Is it an intifada, a partial uprising or the beginnings of an intifada?
I don't think there is a term other than “intifada” or “mass uprising” that can be used to describe a situation in which the Palestinian youth from all parts of Palestine -- Jerusalem, the north of the West Bank, the south of Gaza, and the occupied cities – have come to declare their rebellion against the occupation, oppression, racial discrimination and brutal killings which they suffer from.
It is an intifada whether some people like or not. It is an intifada whose watchword is this marvellous generation of Palestinian youth who has not been corrupted by the so-called joys of life and whose will was not thwarted by the loan system aiming at enslaving people with consumerist patterns that they can not afford.
This generation has not been led astray by unjust agreements and was not thwarted by defeatist experts and theoreticians spreading frustration and despair, who proliferate like malignant fungus at a time of decline.
This generation is regaining the best of the ingenuity of their fathers and mothers, who bore the burden of the first Palestinian intifada which was written in history as the noblest model of popular resistance.
That intifada would have led to real freedom and independence had it not fallen into the trap of the Oslo agreement, which the Israelis set up with utmost care in order to curb the achievements of the first intifada, that had changed the balance of power for the benefit of the Palestinian people.
Today's intifada has erupted after the accumulation of non-stop struggles since 2002. These struggles included demonstrations against the racist Israeli separation wall, flotillas breaking the blockade imposed on Gaza, the boycott-Israeli-goods campaigns, the construction of protest villages such as Bab Al-Shams and Ahfad Yunus, and the extraordinarily heroic resistance of our people in Gaza in face of unprecedented war crimes and atrocities that surpassed those that took place during World War II.
The beginnings of this Intifada were manifested in the Jerusalem uprising protesting the burning of the Palestinian teenager Mohamed Abu Khodeir and the enormous demonstrations against Israeli aggression against Gaza.
It gained momentum following the crime of the burning of the Al-Dawabsha family at the hands of inhuman and criminal settlers, not a single one of whom was put on trial.
Palestinians see that they will be killed anyway, whether they resist or not, and they have therefore chosen to resist honourably and with dignity.
It is an intifada because it represents a qualitative shift in the psychological awareness and perception of reality.
This intifada is a total shift from one phase to another. It is a shift from the phase of reliance on failed negotiations that have dragged on for 22 years and that have only brought more humiliation, more settlements, more oppression, more poverty and more unemployment.
At this stage, the Palestinians have seen that they will not attain their basic human rights in freedom and dignity except via resistance to the occupation and its apartheid system, which has surpassed the savage regime that used to exist in South Africa.
It is an intifada that was launched after every Palestinian, including the Oslo Accord brokers, admitted that Osla has failed and has been breached and torn up by consecutive Israeli governments with all means and in all ways possible.
Israeli governments have used Oslo’s articles and annexes as collars to tie the neck of the Palestinian people who are already burdened by the occupation's restraints, fences, the separation wall, settlements and a flagrant racially discriminatory system.
It was not a coincidence therefore that the first sparks of this intifada came from the Palestinian youth in Jerusalem who were not constrained by the restrictions of Oslo Agreements.
It was not a coincidence that the behaviour of the occupiers in Al-Aqsa Mosque and Jerusalem was the last straw, igniting the blaze whose components have been accumulating along the years.
All the statements of condemnation and the shy standpoints of other governments has not deterred Netanyahu from continuing his provocations in Al-Aqsa.
This intifada, however, has deterred Netanyahu. It has forced him to show fear and obliged him to prevent his extremist ministers from entering Al-Aqsa Mosque, because the Palestinians have realised that Netanyahu doesn't understand anything but the language of power, and that what was taken by force has to be regained by force.
This intifada is a revolution for the sake of freedom, dignity, equality and justice. It is for the sake of attaining the Palestinian people's rights, such as the right to return and self-determination.
It is a revolution that is able to unleash and unify the energies of the Palestinian people everywhere, in Jerusalem, the West Bank, the Gaza Strip, inside Israel and in the diasporas to focus on a specific objective.
That objective is to change the balance of power for the benefit of our people through popular resistance and different forms of struggle, through boycott campaigns, sanctions, supporting the steadfastness of the people on the ground and through providing the fourth element which is still missing -- national unity and a unified national leadership that rises to the level of popular, mass and youthful inspiration and ensures that the outcome of struggle will not to be squandered but translated into political gains.
This is the moment to elevate above divisions, factions and personal interests. It is the moment to give priority to the national interest, to terminate the struggle over an authority that does not exist because it is under the control of occupation, and to liberate ourselves from all restraints of unjust agreements and their limitations.
This is a moment that allows the Palestinian people feel proud, to regain confidence and hope in the future. It is the embodiment of the ingenious expression coined by one of those in solidarity with our people: "A nation that resists is a nation that cannot be defeated.”
The writer is secretary-general of the Palestinian National Initiative.