The Palestinians of the West Bank and Gaza are the victims of a brutal racist occupation and ethnic cleansing campaign. They have morality and legality on their side, they have the sympathy of the entire world, yet they’re letting the U.S. and Israel claim the moral high ground and control the dialogue.
Here’s what the Palestinian leadership should do now:
Declare that Israel destroyed the land-for-peace Oslo Accords by reneging on promises and continually building Jewish settlements on the land promised to the Palestinians. This is a fact attested to my many experts including former President Jimmy Carter and the historian Avi Shlaim.
Declare that Israel is illegally occupying Palestinian territory, and is furthermore engaged in ethnic cleansing-as evidenced by the settlement of alien Jews in the West Bank and Gaza, the theft of land and resources, the destruction of homes, and the inhumane restrictions and humiliations intended to make the Palestinians’ lives so miserable that they will leave.
Declare that the Palestinian Authority no longer exists, neither do any other promises, concessions, or arrangements associated with Oslo. There exists only Israel, the occupier, and the Palestinian people, the occupied. Arafat is now just the de facto leader of an occupied people.
Declare that as an occupied people, the Palestinians cannot and should not negotiate with the occupier. The relationship is completely asymmetrical. The rest of the world has a moral and legal obligation to force Israel to end the occupation; only then can the Palestinians negotiate with Israel as equals.
Declare that there can be no ceasefire as long as the violence of occupation and ethnic cleansing persist. Palestinian people have every right to resist this violence by any and all means available, from non-violent protest to attacks against adult Israeli civilians in Israel. Far from being innocent, Israel’s citizens elected and now support the present Israeli government’s brutal racist occupation of, and crimes against all Palestinian civilians. Israeli citizens will have security only when Palestinians have freedom and security.
Demand that Israel end the occupation immediately by withdrawing its forces and its settlers to its 1967 borders in accordance with UN Security Council Resolution 242 and the recent Arab Summit proposal.
Appeal to the UN and all nations to support the rights of the Palestinians and to pressure Israel to cease its violent oppression and dispossession of the Palestinian people of the West Bank and Gaza by either:
a: withdrawing from the West Bank and Gaza and recognizing a Palestinian state in these territories or
b: offer to incorporate the West Bank and Gaza into the state of Israel-but an Israel reconstituted as a secular, multiethnic state with full and equal rights for all citizens.
8. State that Israel has one month to take action to end the state of occupation, after which time the Palestinian people will apply to the U.N. for recognition of Palestine within the 1967 borders.