Monkey Wrench at the UN
Friday, September 23, 2011 3:06 AM
The protracted Mideast "peace process" has finally hit the Iron Wall. There is consternation in the capital of the lone surviving "superpower" and outrage in Tel Aviv. The unelected and illegitimate president of the Palestinian Authority, Mahmoud Abbas, has decided to think outside the box. To put it another way, he has wandered off the reservation.
He is taking the question of Palestine to the UN in a belated effort to get some clarity for Palestinian rights inside Palestine as well as to seek a degree of outside protection from the Tel Aviv-Washington axis. On a human level, who can blame him? One wonders why the idea was not pursued years ago. It is a no-brainer.
The much-ballyhooed, American-sponsored "peace process" began at the Madrid Conference in 1991--in the aftermath of Operation Desert Storm--and has continued ever since under various guises, subplots and revivals. Let's see if you can recall some: The Oslo Accords (1993), Gaza-Jericho Agreement (1994), Oslo II (1995), Wye River Memorandum (1998), Sharm el-Sheikh Memorandum (1999), Camp David Summit (2000), Taba Conference (2001), Roadmap for Peace (April 2003), Aqaba Peace Summit (June 2003), The Geneva Initiative (October 2003), Sharm el-Sheikh Summit (2005), Sharm el-Sheikh Summit II (2007), Annapolis Summit (2007), Obama's Cairo Speech (June 2009), Waldorf Astoria Hotel Trilateral Meeting (September 2009), Washington Summit (September 2010). Whew!
Aside from providing a convenient, all-purpose diplomatic cover for Israeli military occupation for almost twenty years, the end-result of the "peace process" hoopla has been the imposition of over half a million fanatical Jewish "settlers" on the West Bank, complementing the formal annexation of Arab Jerusalem and the Syrian Golan Heights.
These arrangements have required the routine expropriation of more real estate, aquifers and water rights in occupied Palestine to accommodate the "settlers" arriving in planeloads from Brooklyn, the former Soviet Union, and from the four corners of the globe. In down-to-earth language, this is called theft. It has been on-going since 1948. The “peace process” facilitated it. In addition, the authorities in Tel Aviv and Jerusalem have built a concrete wall higher and longer than the Berlin Wall to encase the West Bank. Gaza remains blockaded.
Such unilateral acts by the military occupying power, illegal under international law, are now set in stone according to Washington. They are euphemistically referred to as "facts on the ground" which the Palestinians are invited to condone and accept, or else be deemed terrorists. To a remarkable degree, these operations have been paid for by the U.S. Congress via the U.S. Treasury and by tax-deductible contributions from U.S. citizens. Clearly, America has been hijacked and is being taken for a ride.
This prolonged scam commenced for the Palestinians under the leadership of Yasser Arafat and is ending with Mahmoud Abbas. You will recall that Arafat was relegated to the outer void by Washington in July 2000 as soon as he failed to accept the Diktat proffered to him at Camp David by Bill Clinton and by Israel's lawyers Dennis Ross and Martin Indyk, acting in concert with Israel's slippery Prime Minister, Ehud Barak. Clinton blamed the blowup of the summit entirely on the hapless Arafat. Bill and Hillary washed their hands lickety-split of the whole affair, thereby keeping their pro-Israel credentials intact and their post-White House career prospects alive.
On the advice of Ariel Sharon and Dick Cheney, the next occupant of the White House refused even to pick up the phone and talk to Arafat. It can convincingly be argued that G.W. Bush, an inexperienced simpleton in thrall to the Neocons and to Cheney, outsourced Washington’s entire Mideast policy to Ariel Sharon until Sharon suffered a massive stroke, which left him in a coma. After being feted in Washington and Europe for nearly a decade, Arafat ended his days under siege at his ramshackle compound in Ramallah, where he died under mysterious circumstances in 2004.
You could say that Arafat was a victim of the Bush’s "war on terror"--or a target of Ariel Sharon's war of terror, depending upon your point of view. Probably both are correct. Sharon was not known as “the Butcher of Beirut” and “the bulldozer” for no reason. Arafat's deputy, the colorless and mild-mannered Abbas, inherited the leadership of Fatah and the Palestinian Authority. He wanted to give negotiations another try. At first, he was rebuffed.
In the meantime, G.W. Bush and Condoleezza Rice hit upon the idea that the Palestinians should have an election. The election took place in 2006, monitored by former U.S. President Jimmy Carter and other neutral observers. Hamas won big in both the West Bank and in Gaza. Carter commented: "The elections were completely honest, fair, safe and without violence. We were all surprised at the enormity of the Hamas victory."
Bush instantly jettisoned Hamas. Washington refused to accept the outcome. Washington and Tel Aviv would henceforth only deal with Mahmoud Abbas, who became their appointed and authorized interlocutor, as Arafat had been before him. So much for democracy. The “peace process” continued.
Abbas' unelected regime on the West Bank was funded, propped up and perfumed by Washington, while Hamas' stronghold in Gaza was turned into the biggest prison camp on earth for 1.5 million human beings and relegated to a free-fire zone for Tel Aviv to attack at will and with complete impunity. Divide et impera. David Rose has delineated in the pages of Vanity Fair in 2008 how the Cheney White House, in the person of the shameless Likudnik Elliot Abrams, orchestrated an attempted military takeover of Gaza by Fatah in 2006. It failed.
So here we are. A dead-end at last. Evidently, Abbas and his associates have grown weary of being treated like stooges but having little to show for it. Surely they had hoped that Peace Prize Obama could deliver some concessions and a modicum of rationality from Sharon's former acolyte, the double-talking Bibi Netanyahu. That hope was reasonable given Obama’s lofty rhetoric, but it was in vain.
All Obama delivered was pap, platitudes and bromides. Obama, contrary to his own grandiose opinion of himself, had no clout whatever when it came to dealing with the powers-that-be in Israel or with his own domestic pro-Israel Lobby. In that respect, Obama is an empty suit, a Potemkin Village. True, this makes Obama no different from any other Washington career politician with White House aspirations or from any modern American president who wants to get reelected.
Abbas and his fellow apparatchiks in the Palestinian Authority are obviously desperate. They have been subsidized handsomely by Washington, Saudi Arabia and the EU, but that is getting them nowhere fast, and time is working against them. They may even be worried about an internal revolt on the West Bank along the lines of what happened in Egypt. They need some leverage in dealing with their Zionist overlords. They have no cards, no bargaining chips, little status, and nothing to negotiate with. Washington and Tel Aviv like it that way. They have insisted it be that way. They prefer the current state of affairs to continue indefinitely.
This explains the Abbas démarche, the move of the Palestinian file to the UN. No wonder Tel Aviv and Washington are annoyed and going ballistic. For the moment at least, their "peace process" playbook has been torn up. What did they expect?
For President Obama, it will be especially embarrassing. If the U.S. vetoes Palestinian statehood in the Security Council--I'm praying that Hillary Rodham Clinton herself will be the U.S. representative sitting at the table who casts the veto--Obama will be exposed before the entire world as just another hypocrite, dwarf and proxy for Tel Aviv, along the lines of that jackass, Tony Blair.
Obama has pretended to be a principled, liberal, even-handed and sincere peacemaker. It will be most difficult to maintain that fiction after a U.S. veto. As for Hillary's reputation, a veto will only confirm what has long been self-evident. The Israel Lobby owns the woman. Can you imagine her next trip to Riyadh?
Or am I wrong? Does Obama in fact want to be regarded as a flunky for Israel at this point in time, so as to shore up Jewish funding and precious votes in Florida for his reelection in 2012? That is entirely possible, even likely. Like Hillary, Obama is ever the consummate opportunist, party hack, actor and a colossal phony.
Meanwhile, the fruitcakes and fools in the Republican party are having a field day, blasting Obama for supposedly throwing Israel under the bus. Nothing could be more preposterous. The fruitcakes must believe that spouting such nonsense advances their cause, otherwise they would not be doing it. The excuse that they are ignorant and do not know any better is beside the point. They are no less disgraceful than Obama.
In sum, when it comes to America and the Middle East, we are not dealing with foreign policy at all. We never have been. This lesson here goes back to Harry Truman's difficult election campaign of 1948 and to Truman's recognition of the Jewish beachhead in Palestine as a legitimate state back then. His calculated decision went against the unanimous advice from the U.S. State and Defense Departments.
In the current hubbub over statehood for Palestine, as with everything else pertaining to the triumphal march of Zionism since 1917, we are dealing almost exclusively with American domestic politics--specifically, with ethnocentric special interests, a favorable press, but most of all with campaign contributions. In sum, it's a racket.
--Copyright 2011 Patrick Foy--
Update I: “On Israel and Palestine, Obama is Rick Perry”, M.J. Rosenberg, September 23rd.
Update II: “The Futile Undertaking”, CounterPunch, September 24th.
Update III: “UN statehood bid deals death blow to the old diplomacy”, Jonathan Cook, September 26th.
Update IV: “Bunker Busters”, Philip Giraldi, The American Conservative, September 26th.
Update V: “Tony Blair’s job in jeopardy as Palestinians accuse him of bias”, The Telegraph, September 28th.