Punish Israel!!

Mustafa Barghouti
Sunday 31 Dec 2017

It was legitimate to be outraged when some Arab officials issued statements speaking of normalisation with Israel while Netanyahu was celebrating the impulsive US president’s recognition of Jerusalem as the capital of Israel

It is totally unacceptable that some international officials continue saying that the situation in Palestine is but a dispute or a conflict between two parties whose responsibilities are equal and that some of them repeat Trump's sin in considering that the Palestinians' rights in freedom and independence is conditional to Israel's acceptance.

The Palestinian people's cause has made big strides through 151 countries refusing  Trump's decision and the European Union's firm stand against it and the Palestinian, Arab and international great popular reaction, although some governments' official stands were unable to keep up with.

It is impermissible after all what has happened to continue talking about a certain settlement between the two parties when Israel infringes the International Law om daily basis, literally demolishes through its settlements and measures every chance for a political solution and when it firmly establishes every moment in impertinent persistence the worst racist apartheid system in history.

After 25 years of failed peace process we have to an alternative and different approach that returns to the essence and root of the problem that is the Palestinian cause. It is a cause of a people who are struggling against injustice, oppression, aggression and racial discrimination. It is imperative that the Palestinian people’s struggle against Israel's mighty force be backed.

We have no need for a mediator between us as Palestinians and our oppressor. But we need that our struggle against him be backed and supported in order to change the balance of power to force him to retreat like other several colonial powers were compelled to retreat and respect the will of peoples who are struggling for their freedom.

There is no Arab or Islamic country which believes in Jerusalem's standing and its holy sites, including the Al-Aqsa Mosque the first Qiblah and the third holiest site in Islam, can be slack in performing its duties in standing with the Palestinian people and taking punitive measures against Israel instead of searching for means of normalising and establishing formal relations with her.

The European countries, which confirmed their acknowledgement of the Palestinians’ rights in Jerusalem, won’t be true to themselves and to their policies unless they acknowledge immediately the state of Palestine and did not take concrete actions against the Israeli violations.

Palestinians do not ask anybody to send armies to fight Israel because they know the limits of power of many countries. But it is their right to ask all the world countries, first and foremost Arab Islamic countries, to sever their relations with Israel, close its embassies if they existed and join the Boycott, Divestment, Sanctions (BDS) movement against Israel.

These moves are to be done in order to force Israel to abide by the International Law and human law and stop its incessant crime it started seventy years ago against the Palestinian people.

There are several countries that suffered from international sanctions, often unjustly so, only because the USA ordered this. This has happened with the Sudan, North Korea, Cuba and Russia.

There is a noble and a unique case, when the peoples’ weight and will were capable of obliging countries and governments to boycott the apartheid regime in South Africa until it was overthrown. When Nelson Mandela was elected president to this country said his famous sentence “Our freedom won’t be complete except with the freedom of the Palestinian people”.

As of today, we cannot be silent about injustice. As for us Palestinians, we cannot endure the silence of others towards it. As of today, it is impermissible for us to accept that anybody deceive us by talking about mediation, settlements, co-existing with occupation and racial persecution after all what happened. After all those years were lost in the darkness of an unending “peace” process which was used every time to give Israel rulers time and cover to expand their settlements activities and their Judaising operations, to distort the narrative and poison the world’s intellects through media deception. 

There is only one right way: to say to the world there is a legitimate right for the Palestinian people, that is to be with it or against it. If you are with it is inevitable to confront Israel through practical and concrete measures, the most important one is imposing sanctions on it and boycotting its occupation and racist regime. Whoever does not want to stand with the right will find himself accused of collusion with violating the International Law and with obnoxious injustice that the time has come to end it.

The writer is Secretary-General of the Palestinian National Initiative

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