The US again caved in to the administration of the war criminal Sharon by agreeing to let him decide the “implementation” phase of the so-called “Road Map”. This is already a document with no mention of human rights or basic International law. This document is thus added to the pile of other useless documents from Rogers Plan, to the Oslo accords, to the Mitchell Plan, and the Tenet Plan. The only discussion between Bush and Sharon seems to have been about the best public relations strategy to deal with this issue. In other words how to give the Israeli settlers public assurances while giving the world the impression that Israel would consider a freeze on colonial settlement activities. On the ground, nothing changes the relentless drive to finish confiscating the remainder of Palestine and finish the job started in 1947 of ethnically cleansing Palestine. Well perhaps there is a change, Israel will no longer allow any foreign or Israeli observers or peace activists to witness what it is doing. This is the letter just received from Rabbi Arik Asherman of Rabbis for Human Rights-Israel:
“I just returned from a GSS (Shabak) interrogation. The GSS is currently calling in members of the Israeli Committee Against Home Demolitions to ask questions about the activities of ICAHD and warn us that the Attorney-General has determined that rebuilding demolished homes in Jerusalem is illegal. (The refused to give us the decision in writing, but we will try to obtain it.) This along with the systematic use of ‘Closed Military Area’ orders, etc., indicates that the Israeli government is not content to shut down the activities of foreign activists (CPTer Greg Rollins was returned from the airport last night as the government backed down from its intent to deport him before responding to the High Court’s demand that the government explain its decision.) but intends to shut down the activities of Israeli organizations as well. The intent is not only to stop activities which can be seen as ‘illegal,’ but to also prevent humanitarian activities, the work of Taayush to accompany children to school, etc. Ultimately, it may be that the goal is to prevent any ‘seeing eye.’ witnessing what is happening in the Occupied Territories.”
After killing American Rachel Corrie and shooting others, Israel is deporting peaceful activists of the International Solidarity Movement. Israel also continues its unabated attacks and killing of Palestinian Civilians with dozens of homes demolished and over 20 civilians killed this week. The US public is complicit and not merely silent because we send our taxes to the tune of billions per year to the Israeli colonizers. What we are buying with this money is destruction of a whole society and alienation of the whole world. Some perhaps enjoy their SUVs as a fruit of the war on Iraq. But add erosion of US civil liberties, unemployment, a devastated economy, and tax cuts for the wealthy and Orwell would have never imagined it this bad.
Dr. Mazin B. Qumsiyeh is Chair of the Media Committee, The Palestine Right to Return Coalition. He contributed above article to Media Monitors Network (MMN) from Connecticut, USA.