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Issue No : 94

Palestinian Cultural Organization Malaysia

2nd June , 2014

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2nd June , 2014

Issue No : 94

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Administrative detainees’ hunger strike going on for 39 days P6

Salt and Water, the battle continues FEATURED STORY

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Hunger strikers risk death in Israeli jails P8

The Israeli recipe to prolong the conflict Hamas Launches Rally in Solidarity with Hunger Strikers 2 |

ARTICLE

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Palestinian Cultural Organization Malaysia


Issue No : 94

2nd June , 2014

CONTENTS News of Palestine

Salt and Water, the battle continues Administrative detainees’ hunger strike going on for 39 days Hunger strikers risk death in Israeli jails Hamas Launches Rally in Solidarity with Hunger Strikers Palestinian unity government to be announced in the middle of this week Haneyya: The national unity gov’t will be declared despite all obstacles Israelis demolish Naqab Village for 69th time Communities demand an end to ethnic cleansing in Jordan Valley Palestine qualify for their first Asian Cup

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Israel Insider

Children describe torture in Israeli solitary confinement

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Malaysia & Palestinian Cause

Malaysian universities express solidarity with Palestinian hunger strikers Malaysia demands immediate lifting of blockade on Gaza

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Articles & Analyses

The Israeli recipe to prolong the conflict

Palestinian Cultural Organization Malaysia

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2nd June , 2014

Issue No : 94

News of Palestine

Salt and Water, the battle continues

With Palestinian political prisoners now more than one month into an ongoing hunger strike, daily solidarity events and direct actions are being held across Palestine and abroad. The hunger strike began in April against Israel’s continued use of Administrative Detention - a system of imprisonment without charge, trial or access to legal defence. A previous hunger strike in 2012 was ended after Israel agreed to limit its use of Administrative Detention, a false promise that never weeks. translated to action on the Oc- The Palestinian street is moving cupation’s part. in solidarity with the prisoners. According to Addameer, a Events are being held daily both Palestinian prisoners’ rights within the 1967 occupied lands organisation, 183 Palestinian and also within 1948 occupied political prisoners are current- Palestine. Solidarity tents have ly being held on Administra- been set up in many Palestinian tive Detention including nine cities and direct actions are now members of the Palestinian being taken by youth activists. On Legislative Council. In total, Wednesday, a group of activists more than 5,200 Palestinians closed down the Ramallah headare currently being held in the quarters of the ICRC in protest at the ‘silence from the ICRC and Occupation’s prisons. other international organisations The number of hunger strikers who are responsible for ensuring is also increasing. According human dignity and rights of Palto the Palestinian Authority estinian prisoners. Minister of Prisoner’s Affairs, Issa Qarake, who spoke at a On Friday, demonstrations were sit-in protest outside the Ra- held across Palestine in supmallah headquarters of the In- port of the hunger strikers; in the ternational Committee of Red West Bank, demonstrations were Cross (ICRC) on Tuesday, at planned at Ofer detention cenleast 350 prisoners had joined tre near Ramallah, Huwara near the strike. At least 70 of the Nablus, Hebron and other cities hunger strikers have been and villages. A planned demonhospitalised after now refus- stration following Friday prayers ing food for more than five at al-Aqsa mosque, was prevent4 |

ed by a massive Israeli security presence - including soldiers, border and regular policemen who encircled the Old City area with checkpoints, preventing any Palestinians under the age of 45 from entering the entire area. As Palestinians were kept away from the Old City, tourists and settlers were allowed to walk around freely. In the occupied 1948 lands, events have been held outside Ramle prison, in Jaffa and in Haifa. Protests are ongoing and youth activist groups have also promised to escalate direct actions until the prisoner’s demands are met, and their rights are both defended and realised. The hunger strikers are struggling for their rights, with only salt and water keeping them alive.

Source: PCOM+Agencies

Palestinian Cultural Organization Malaysia


Issue No : 94

2nd June , 2014

Administrative detainees’ hunger strike going on for 39 days 1/6/2014 Despite their serious deteriorating health conditions, Palestinian administrative detainees continued their hunger strike for 39 days running with high spirits and strong determination amid escalating popular support. Palestine center for Prisoner Studies confirmed that many hunger strikers risk death in Israeli jails especially that 80 of them were transferred to hospital after starting suffering vomiting, low sugar levels, high blood pressure, significant weight loss and many other In Bethlehem, Hamas movehealth problems. ment and Palestinian forces For his part, head of Ahrar Cen- organized a rally after Friday ter for Prisoners Studies Fouad prayers in support of adminisKhuffash confirmed to the PIC trative detainees. reporter that 1500 Palestinian In al-Khalil, Palestine Center detainees are engaged in an for Prisoners Studies organized open hunger strike in Israeli two large marches in Seir town jails. and Aroub refugee camp in soliKhuffash said that new batches darity with the prisoners’ hunger of prisoners declared their in- strike. tention to join the strike in the In Salfit, hundreds of Palestincoming days. ians including liberated prisonAround 100 administrative de- ers marched in support of huntainees have launched on the 24 ger strikers’ demands, calling of April the longest collective on human rights institutions to hunger strike in Israeli jails, he pressure the Israeli occupation authorities to meet their legitiadded. mate demands. Khuffash expressed his satisfaction in light of the escalating In Jenin, Palestinian youths popular support to the hunger organized a solidarity vigil in Ya’bad town holding banners strike particularly in al-Khalil. calling for an end to administraLarge solidarity marches were tive detention. organized throughout West Bank on Friday, while two dem- Numerous vigils and marches onstrations were suppressed in have been organized throughout the West Bank in order to exert Jenin by PA forces. more pressure for the release of

Palestinian Cultural Organization Malaysia

Palestinian administrative detainees. Meanwhile, Captive movement inside the Green Line has organized a demonstration on Friday in support of striking administrative detainees outside Ramle prison hospital. Hundreds of Palestinians and prisoners’ families have participated in the demonstration calling for releasing Palestinian prisoners and administrative detainees. The organizers confirmed that their march came to enhance prisoners’ steadfastness and will till meeting their demands and rights. The organizers stressed the importance of political intervention to save the lives of striking administrative detainees in light of their serious health deterioration.

Source: PIC | 5


2nd June , 2014

Issue No : 94

Hunger strikers risk death in Israeli jails 31/5/2014 Palestinian detainee Abdel Moez Jaabi, who has been in Israeli jails for nine years, has suffered a stroke and was transferred to hospital with unstable emergency medical condition. On the other hand, Raymond prison’s administration has transferred the detainee Hamada Abdul Latif, sentenced to life term imprisonment, and the prisoner Mohammed Mhafesh, sentenced to 16 years imprisonment, to Nafha prison after confronting Israeli forces who stormed section 4 in the prison. Administrative detainees declared on the 24th of April an open hunger strike protesting their continued detention without charge or trial. Palestinian administrative detainee Ayman Atabish continued his hunger strike for the 92nd day in a row in Israeli jails amid fears of his sudden death especially that he suffers heart muscle weakness. The striker’s mother said that her son declared his hunger strike on the 28th of February in protest against his detention without charge or trial, demanding an end to administrative detention policy and the Israeli secret files. In an interview with PIC reporter, the mother called on international human rights institutions to intervene in support of the prisoners’ issue. Atabish is kept under continued surveillance for fear of sudden 6 |

cardiac death especially that he tinued. “We only wish to die suffers heart muscle weakness, among our beloved ones”. the mother added. He pointed to their deteriorated For his part, the detainee Riad health siutaiton due to Israeli Amour, held in Ramla prison hos- deliberate medical neglect polpital, stressed the importance of icy. popular support to enhance the Following her visit to sick Captive Movement’s steadfast- prisoners, lawyer Buthaina ness in Israeli jails. Duqmaq said that Amour sufIn his letter to Palestinian people, Amour denounced popular and official negligence to prisoners’ plight and sick prisoners’ suffering in particular. “We lost confidence in everyone topped by PA, we no longer believe in anyone,” he said. “We received many promises and vows to release sick detainees; however nothing happened,” Amour added. Amour was among the sick prisoners that Israel refused to release in the Wafa alAhrar swap deal despite their acute health deterioration.

fers heart problems, as he underwent a surgery to insert a pacemaker which needs to be replaced each year according to doctors.

Amour, arrested in 2002 and sentenced to 11 life imprisonment, has suffered medical complications due to inappropriate surgery after doctors shifted his pacemaker from the left side to the right side of his chest but did not change the device itself, which caused him inflammations and more suffering, the lawyer added.

“We wish to spend the rest of Source: our lives between our families Ahrar news + Agencies and children of whom we were deprived for long years”, he con-

Palestinian Cultural Organization Malaysia


Issue No : 94

2nd June , 2014

Hamas Launches Rally in Solidarity with Hunger Strikers A march was organized in the West Bank by Hamas, on Friday, in solidarity with Palestinian administrative detainees in the Israeli jails. Furthermore, Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas has taken a position to dissolve the Prisoners’ Ministry. Hundreds of Palestinians and lawmakers took part in the demonstration, beginning at the Al-Beireh Mosque and finishing at Al-Manara square, in the central West Bank city of Ramallah. Al Ray reports that senior member of Hamas, MP Hassan Yousef, called on Palestinian detention. resistance to capture another The current strike was launched Israeli soldier to swap him with April 24, by 80 detainees, and Palestinian prisoners. many have since joined. Around 140 administrative Issa Qaraqe, Palestinian minister detainees have been on strike of prisoners’ affairs, said today for 38 days, in protest of Isthat 1,500 Palestinian prisoners rael’s administrative detention would join a mass hunger strike policy, in which prisoners are on Sunday, warning of deterioheld indefinitely, under severe rating health conditions of more conditions, and without charge than 100 who have been on strike or trial. for over a month. The Israeli prison administraHe fears that “there might be martion recently distributed leaflets tyrs” if the strike continues, as to Palestinian prisoners held in more than 100 Palestinian prisonIsraeli jails, in an official reers who began their 38th day of nege on a previous agreement hunger strike on Saturday have with the prisoners reached in been hospitalized, according to 2012 under the Egyptian ausMa’an News Agency. pices. In related news, Al Ray reports Under the previous agreement, that Fatah official Abu Zaideh 2,000 Palestinian prisoners has said that Palestinian President ended their hunger strike with Mahmoud Abbas’ position to disa promise by Israel to end the solve the Palestinian ministry of policy itself but, as of March 1, prisoners was instigated by pres183 Palestinians were still besure from extremist Israeli parties ing held under administrative backed by the U.S. and some Eu-

Palestinian Cultural Organization Malaysia

ropean countries. “Israel always labelled these prisoners as ‘vandals’, ‘terrorists’ and ‘killers’, either they were administrative prisoners, stone-throwing children, or those charged with killing Israelis,” he said. Of note, according to Al Ray, the two sticking points on the formation of the Palestinian concensus government are the ministry of detainees, which president Abbas wants to dissolve but Hamas refuses, and the name of the foreign minister. Abbas was recently quoted as saying that his collaboration with Israeli occupation forces is “sacred” and would continue even if the PA forms a “government” backed by the Palestinian military resistance organization Hamas.

Source: ALRAY | 7


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Issue No : 94

Palestinian unity government to be announced in the middle of this week

31/5/2014

mediators.

Senior Hamas leader Mousa Abu-Marzouq said on Friday that the obstacles facing the unity government will be overcome in two days and the government will be announced in the middle of this week.

Abu-Marzouq said that Fatah and Palestinian Authority President (PA) Mahmoud Abbas is afraid that America will stop financial assistance should the PA not dissolve the ministry of prisoners.

Speaking at a meeting in the Gaza city of Rafah, Abu-Marzouq said that there are two obstacles before the unity government is announced; the ministry of prisoners and the foreign minister Riyad al-Maliki.

“American aid is not a means of pressure,” AbuMarzouq said. “The PA is entitled to this aid for its obligations based on the Oslo Accords.” He reiterated that there has been an American veto on the reconciliation, through pressure applied to the PA since 2009.

“It impossible to abolish the ministry of prisoners, which serves thousands of prisoners and freed prisoners,” Abu-Marzouq said. “We cannot ignore their rights and our duties towards them,” he added. Abu-Marzouq said that Hamas does not want AlMaliki because of the remarks he made during the Israeli offensive on Gaza in 2012. Al-Maliki blamed Hamas for the offensive when Israel started it by assassinating Ahmed Al-Ja’bari, the Hamas leader who was in charge of running truce talks with Israeli officials through Egyptian 8 |

Abu-Marzouq recognised that foreign aid is accepted to some extent since Palestinians are not fully independent. He insisted: “They must not be a sword on our necks.” He continued: “The important thing for Hamas is that the Palestinians do not divide, but remain united. We seek to position the people on a united national path. Even if they have different political programmes, they still have much in common.”

Source: MEMO

Palestinian Cultural Organization Malaysia


Issue No : 94

2nd June , 2014

Haneyya: The national unity gov’t will be declared despite all obstacles

31/5/2014

Palestinian people and their national factions.

Palestinian premier Ismail Haneyya said the contentious issues between the Palestinian parties regarding the formation of the interim unity government would be resolved soon despite all Zio-American pressures.

He expressed his understanding of the current popular fears and doubts resulting from the previous failed agreements, affirming that the national reconciliation, this time, would keep moving forward and see daylight soon.

“In the last hours, some issues came to the surface, but they are under control. Our consultations and dialog will be ongoing in order to reach a national consensus on these issues and the final form of the government,” premier Haneyya stated in his Friday khutba (sermon).

“This time, we are determined to achieve our goal and get to our destination on sound and correct foundations,” Haneyya said. In a related context, member of Hamas’s political bureau Mousa Abu Marzouk said that Palestinian Authority president Mahmoud Abbas might announce the birth of the unity government by the middle of the current week. Abu Marzouk made his remarks in a news conference held on the sidelines of his meeting on Friday with national dignitaries and factional leaders in the Rafah area of Gaza.

He stated that the line-up of the unity government would be declared next Monday or Tuesday, affirming that Hamas and Fatah The premier stressed that his would overcome all differences between them. Movement seeks a unity governSource: PIC ment receiving the consent of the

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Issue No : 94

2nd June , 2014

Israelis demolish Naqab Village for 69th time 29/5/2014 Israeli soldiers demolished the Bedouin village of al-Araqib, in the Naqab (Negev), for what amounts to the 69th consecutive time, on Thursday, say witnesses. The previous evening, suspected Jewish vandals slashed the tires of eight Palestinian-owned vehicles in BaqaGharbia town, pre-1948 occupied Palestine. The villagers of al-Araqib, near Beer Sheba, have called upon the international community and all relevant human rights organizations to intervene and stop the systematic measures against them, by the Israeli government, WAFA reports. Violations against the Bedouin community are frequent and ongoing. By such attacks, Israeli authorities seek to displace the residents living in the area as prelude to seizing their land for the benefit of settlement expansion. According to local sources, a number of Jewish vandals, most likely belonging to a “Price Tag” gang, punctured the tires of 8 civilian Palestinian-owned cars parked at al-Qasmi college, Baqa-Gharbia town, where they defaced the bodies of the vehicles with sharp tools.

“Price Tag” attacks come from a group of Jewish militant civilians which carries out destructive and intimidating actions directed against Palestinians and their property, Al Ray further reports, including mostly land but also mosques and vehicles in the West Bank, and increasingly in Israel itself.

After the vandals carried out the attack, Attacks of this particular nature were included in the US Al Ray Reports, they escaped from the State Department’s 2013 Country Reports on Terrorism, area in a Toyota car, according to wit- published April 30 of this year. nesses. Source: IMEMC

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Palestinian Cultural Organization Malaysia


Issue No : 94

2nd June , 2014

Communities demand an end to ethnic cleansing in Jordan Valley

Palestinians protested Wednesday in front of the United Nations office in Ramallah against the latest wave of home demolitions and displacement of the Palestinian Bedouin community in the village of Abu al Jaj. The community was evicted on May 21, 2014, rendering 71 Palestinians homeless. The demonstration demanded the United Nations and international community end their silence on the ongoing ethnic cleansing of the Jordan Valley. The demonstrators handed a letter addressed to Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon asking for immediate and effective action. They also called upon international civil society to boycott the Hyundai Motor Company due to the company’s involvement in the displacement of communities in the Jordan Valley. The eviction in Abu al Jaj is the latest episode in an ongoing policy of displacement and population transfer, particularly in the West Bank’s Jordan Valley. The United Nation’s Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (UNOCHA) has documented the demolition of 2,603 structures and displacement of 4,325 Palestinians from their homes between 2009-2013 . The majority of these demolitions have occurred in the Jordan Valley and in Area C. Since the beginning of 2014, 611 people have already been displaced in the West Bank, and 308 structures were demolished.

Source: Ma’an

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Issue No : 94

2nd June , 2014

Palestine qualify for their first Asian Cup

Palestine qualified for their maiden Asian Cup appearance with a 1-0 win over injury-hit Philippines in the final of the AFC Challenge Cup in Maldives on Friday. Ashraf Alfawaghra scored the winner with a free kick in the 59th minute to help Palestine, ranked 34th in Asia, enjoy a memorable night at the National stadium in Male. Palestine, who ended the eight-nation tournament without conceding a goal in five matches, booked a place in the Asian Cup to be held in Australia next January. They will be placed in group D of the continental showpiece alongside defending champions Japan, Jordan and Iraq. The Philippines, ranked 21st in Asia, missed four key players -- goalkeeper Neil Etheridge, fullback Dennis Cagara, centre-back Juan Guirado and striker Ruben Doctora -- in the final due to injuries. A delighted Palestine coach Jamal Mahmoud said the 2-0 win over fancied Afghanistan in the semi-final on Tuesday had made his side believe they were capable of winning the title. “That win against the Afghans was very important,” he said. “I think we were also the better team in the final. This is a very proud moment for us and our fans back home. We have not let them down. “We are all very excited about getting a chance to be part of the Asian Cup. We will prepare well for it.”

Source: AFP 12 |

Palestinian Cultural Organization Malaysia


Issue No : 94

2nd June , 2014

Israel Insider

Children describe torture in Israeli solitary confinement

28/5/2014 Israeli Prime Minister Benyamin Netanyahu ex- The housing minister, for his part, stressed that pressed his utter refusal of dividing the occupied he would not accept settlement construction freeze in the occupied West Bank and Jerusalem. city of Jerusalem. “Jerusalem is the heart of the nation of Israel.” He- Israeli settlements in the occupied Palestine are Jewish civilian communities built on lands ocbrew media reported Netanyahu as saying. cupied by Israel during the 1967 Six-Day War. The statement came during a festival held to com- Such settlements currently exist in the West memorate the 47th anniversary of the 1967 War. Bank, East Jerusalem, and in the Golan Heights. ‘Israel’ occupied Jerusalem (Al-Quds) during the Settlement expansion has continued unabated, 1967 War. It later annexed the holy city in 1980, despite being condemned by almost all other naclaiming it as the capital of the self-proclaimed tions and the UN. Jewish state.

Source: ALRAY

Palestinian Cultural Organization Malaysia

Palestinian Cultural Organization Malaysia

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2nd June , 2014

Issue No : 94

Malaysia & Palestinian Cause

Malaysian universities express solidarity with Palestinian hunger strikers

31/5/2014 Students’ societies in various Malaysian universities have organized rallies after Friday prayer yesterday in solidarity with Palestinian prisoners hunger strikers who are protesting their illegal detention without trial. Hundreds of students answered the call of Al-Aqsa Friends’ Society in IIUM, Palestinian students associations in UKM, UPM and UM, and gathered in the main mosques foyers of the mentioned universities to show their support for the Palestinian prisoners hunger strikers and to express their anger over the international silence towards their daily suffering and deprivation of basic human rights. The participants revealed their unyielding concern over the administrative hunger strikers. “Water and Salt” was among the most chanted slogans reiterated by the rallies participants, which are the only two things being taken by the hunger strikers to keep them alive. Over 200 Palestinian prisoners have been on an open-ended hunger strike for 36 consecutive days, in what came to be known as the Battle of the Empty Stomachs, to protest Israeli arbitrary detention policy carried out against Palestinians with neither charge nor trial.

Source: PCOM

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Palestinian Cultural Organization Malaysia


Issue No : 94

2nd June , 2014

Malaysia demands immediate lifting of blockade on Gaza

29/5/2014 Malaysia wants an immediate lifting of the blockade on Gaza, Palestine, stressing that Israel must put an end to the illegal and inhumane collective punishment perpetrated upon the people of Gaza. In making this call, Foreign Minister Datuk Seri Anifah Aman said Malaysia was gravely concerned about the dire humanitarian situation in the Gaza Strip. “Israel has continued to bombard the population with airstrikes, as part of their military activities in recent months. The economy remains shattered. Food insecurity and energy shortages continue to plague the lives of the people. “Yet, when innocent Gaza civilians attempt to farm and fish to earn their livelihoods and feed their families, they risk being shot by Israeli security forces,” he said in a statement, which was made available to Bernama Thursday. Anifah, who is on a two-day working visit to Al-

giers, Algeria, was speaking at the 17th Ministerial Meeting of the the Non-Aligned Movement (NAM) on Palestine, yesterday. Anifah said the tremendous challenges faced by the Palestinians, had strengthened Malaysia’s resolve to support its (Palestine’s) efforts to obtain diplomatic and legal recognition in the United Nations and other international organisations. “We recognise and fully respect Palestine’s legal and moral rights to accede to multilateral treaties and conventions. “In this connection, Malaysia welcomes the decision by the Palestinian leadership to accede to 15 international conventions, and we reaffirm our full support for their efforts in building a framework for independence and sovereignty,” he said. Anifah hoped that NAM members would fully support the General Assembly resolutions relating to Palestine during the upcoming 69th session.

Source: BERNAMA

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2nd June , 2014

Issue No : 94

Articles & Analyses

The Israeli recipe to prolong the conflict By: Dr Saleh Al-Naami Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu believes that he has discovered the recipe to ensure that legitimacy is given to his refusal to withdraw from the West Bank while, at the same time, holding the Palestinians responsible for the failure to reach a political settlement of the conflict. This recipe is in the form of Israel’s demand that the Palestinians recognise Israel as “the nation-state of the Jewish people”. At first glance, it seems that Netanyahu’s attempt to impose this demand aims to ensure that the Jewish demographic character of Israel is maintained, on the grounds that Palestinian recognition of Israel’s Jewishness would imply a waiver of the right of Palestinian refugees to return to lands from which they or their parents and grandparents were displaced in 1948. Sadly, Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas has made it clear on more than one occasion that the solution to the refugee problem is not necessarily through their return to areas from which they were expelled; this has upset the Palestinian people. In addition, Abbas appealed to the Israelis in an interview with Channel 2 on November 2, 2012, in which he said that he dreams of returning to the city of Safed, from which his family was driven in 1948, but only as a tourist. 16 |

Nevertheless, the Palestinian Authority under Abbas refuses to recognise the Jewishness of Israel because Netanyahu assumes that by taking this step the Palestinians would be handing over ownership of the land, including the West Bank, to the Jews alone, and therefore entitling them to enhance their settlement and colonisation project. In his speech at the most recent AIPAC conference in America, Netanyahu claimed that the Zionist narrative regarding the ownership of the land of Palestine, specifically the West Bank, is the only “historical fact”. According to Netanyahu, Hebron is “the land of our patriarchs where Abraham purchased a cave”; Jerusalem was where “David ruled his kingdom”; and Bethel (a settlement north of Ramallah) represents “the place where Jacob dreamed his dreams”. Netanyahu does not highlight the Jewish history in Palestine to highlight “the price” he is willing to pay to reach a political settlement to the con-

flict, but to justify his refusal to make any true concessions. Hence, he did not hesitate to commit before his party, Likud, not to evacuate any settlements in the West Bank in the context of any political settlement with the Palestinians (Ha’aretz, January 6, 2014). However, Netanyahu, who is committed to only one historical narrative, not only insists on preserving the settlements, which cover at least 12 per cent of the occupied West Bank, but the governing party he leads is also insisting on keeping what is known as “Greater Jerusalem”, which represents 10 per cent of the West Bank, and the Jordan Valley, which covers 27 per cent of the West Bank. That would leave just 52 per cent of the West Bank for the Palestinians to establish an independent State of Palestine. It is unfortunate that a number of Western leaders have supported Netanyahu’s position and demanded that the Palestin-

Palestinian Cultural Organization Malaysia


Issue No : 94 ians recognise Israel’s Jewishness, including US President Barack Obama, British Prime Minister David Cameron and German Chancellor Angela Merkel. There is also evidence that the United States has given legitimacy to the conditions that Netanyahu believes the Palestinians must meet as a result of their recognition of the “Jewish” state of Israel. US Secretary of State John Kerry has reassured Jewish settlers in the West Bank by saying that his plan for an agreement does not require the evacuation of any of them from their homes or the dismantling of any settlement, and that settlers could remain in the areas that are supposed to be allotted for the Palestinian state (Maariv, February 19, 2014). If we take into account the fact that the Israelis reject any element of true sovereignty for a future Palestinian state, especially control over its borders, then the “independent Palestine” that Kerry’s plan promises is nothing but a self-governing authority. The price of recognising the Jewishness of Israel not only drives the Palestinians in the West Bank into the Diaspora but also the Palestinians in Israel, who are Israeli citizens. In order to guarantee the “ethnic purity” of Israel as a Jewish state, Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman has proposed land and population swaps between the Palestinians and Israelis; this would affect the Triangle and Wadi Ara areas, where over 60 per cent of Palestinian citizens of Israel live. They would be “swapped” in exchange for Palestinian approval of the annexation of settlements by Israel. Despite their rights as citizens

2nd June , 2014 of the State of Israel, Lieberman believes that international law permits the transfer of the Palestinians in Israel, even without their consent (Jerusalem Post, March 27, 2014).

Palestinian recognition of the Jewishness of Israel means accepting the passing of racist laws that aim to preserve the Jewish nature of the state.

Palestinian Cultural Organization Malaysia

Palestinian recognition of the Jewishness of Israel means accepting the passing of racist laws that aim to preserve the Jewish nature of the state. Representatives of Israeli political parties, especially in the governing coalition, have not waited for such recognition before passing several racist laws, the most recent of which was the “governance” law, which increased the percentage of votes in elections in order to prevent Arab representation in the Israeli parliament. It is also evident that Palestinian recognition of Israel’s Jewishness legitimises discrimination against Palestinians in Israel. According to a recent Israeli study, the level of services received by Arab citizens of Israel is less than 60 per cent than those offered to the Jews (The Marker, March 10, 2014). In addition to Netanyahu demanding that the Palestinians adopt “the only historical truth”, that is, the Zionist narrative of the history of Palestine, the ministers in his government are demanding the re-drafting of the Palestinian curriculum in order to fit with this narrative, as demanded by Defence Minister Moshe Ya’alon (Yedioth Ahranoth, March 15, 2014). Israeli officials consider the Palestinians’ insistence on their own narrative of Palestinian history to be “incitement” and out of synch with the approach to settle the conflict peacefully. In other words, the Palestinian recognition of the Jewishness | 17


2nd June , 2014

Issue No : 94 of Israel means “Zionising” the collective consciousness of the Palestinians in every sense of the word. Regrettably, the United States is putting pressure on the Palestinians to accept the Zionist historical narrative. The Israeli Minister of International Relations, Yuval Steinitz, succeeded in convincing members of the Budget Committee in the US Senate to call on March 4 for an end to Palestinian “incitement” against Israel as a condition for the continuation of US financial support to the Palestinian Authority (Maariv, March 5, 2014). Steinitz regards the Palestinians’ insistence on their historic rights to Palestine as “a form of incitement” that must be stopped. Ironically, Steinitz himself mourned the death of Rabbi Ovadia Yosef, founder of the Shas movement, few months ago, describing him as “a great rabbi, and a great intellectual”. It is worth noting Yosef’s contribution towards inciting Israelis against the Arabs, such as his repeated calls for “exterminating” the Arabs who he described as “...evil and damnable. It is forbidden to be merciful to them. You must send missiles to them and annihilate them” (Ha’aretz, October 20, 2013). The heavy burdens of Palestinian recognition of the Jewishness of Israel will not only be borne by the Palestinians, but also by hundreds of millions of Muslims who believe that Al-Aqsa Mosque is the third most sacred place in the world. Over a third of MPs in the governing coalition in Israel have proposed a bill demanding Israeli sovereignty over the 18 |

With regards to Netanyahu’s insistence on “the only true history”, he should examine the conclusions reached by the Jewish historian Chaim Gans in his book A Political Theory for the Jewish People: Three Zionist Narratives, which undermine the Israeli prime minister’s historical arguments. “If the Jewish people left the country of Israel for 1,000 years or more, as they were preoccupied with life outside its borders,” asks Gan, “how they can claim that they were the historical owners of the land and remained so even after leaving it?”

Noble Sanctuary of Al-Aqsa on the grounds that it was built on the remains of the temple that was destroyed by the Romans in 135 AD. Moshe Feiglin, Deputy Speaker of the Knesset and a senior Likud official, as well as the drafter of the bill, said that putting Al-Aqsa Mosque under Jewish sovereignty is the most important expression of Israel’s Jewishness (Maariv, February 25, 2014). It has been proven unequivocally that Palestinian recognition of the Jewishness of Israel practically means accepting the liquidation of their cause and “Zionising” their national awareness. However, the Palestinian people will not abandon their national and political rights. With regards to Netanyahu’s insistence on “the only true history”, he should examine the conclusions reached by the Jewish historian Chaim Gans in his book A Political Theory for the Jewish People: Three Zionist Narratives, which undermine the Israeli prime minister’s historical arguments. “If the Jewish people left the country of Israel for 1,000 years or more, as they were preoccupied with life outside its borders,” asks Gan, “how they can claim that they were the historical owners of the land and remained so even after leaving it?” In short, if Netanyahu is dismantling the facts of history opportunistically and selectively to justify his extreme political views and to ensure the prolonging of the conflict, it is unfortunate that those who present themselves as “representatives of the free world” are assisting him.

Palestinian Cultural Organization Malaysia


Issue No : 94

Palestinian Cultural Organization Malaysia

2nd June , 2014

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Issue no 94