Ne­tanyahu is proud of be­ing anti-peace

Pakistan Observer - - EDITORIALS & COMMENTS -

IN an un­for­tu­nate devel­op­ment, Is­raeli Prime Min­is­ter Ben­jamin Ne­tanyahu told French For­eign Min­is­ter on Sun­day that the Jewish state re­mained op­posed to a French ini­tia­tive for an in­ter­na­tional con­fer­ence to try to re­vive peace talks. Pales­tini­ans have wel­comed the pro­posal but Is­rael is op­posed to the idea on the pre­text that the moot, which France seeks to hold in the au­tumn, would try to dic­tate terms for a peace deal.

France is rightly de­scrib­ing its peace move as a first step to­wards de­fus­ing the ‘pow­der-keg’ threat­en­ing to ex­plode in the Mid­dle-East with Is­rael per­sist­ing with its re­pres­sive and ex­pan­sion­ist poli­cies. The ini­tia­tive of­fered a ray of hope for re­vival of peace ef­forts which have been mori­bund since April 2014 when Amer­i­can-spon­sored talks col­lapsed mainly due to in­tran­si­gent at­ti­tude of Tel Aviv. Is­raeli re­jec­tion of the Paris move is not en­tirely un-un­der­stand­able as the Jewish state has been op­pos­ing in­ter­na­tional in­volve­ment in peace ef­forts as that could mean jus­tice for Pales­tini­ans and ac­count­abil­ity of Tel Aviv for its atroc­i­ties against peo­ple of Pales­tine. Is­raeli is no doubt chal­leng­ing the in­ter­na­tional com­mu­nity, its ad­her­ence to two-state so­lu­tion and hun­dreds of UN res­o­lu­tions that call for a just set­tle­ment of the long­stand­ing dis­pute. Is­rael, like In­dia, claims to be will­ing for di­rect bi­lat­eral talks with Pales­tini­ans but its track record shows it never demon­strated se­ri­ous­ness for mean­ing­ful talks and in­stead per­sisted with ac­tions and poli­cies that pushed the two sides fur­ther away from en­gage­ment, like fre­quent bomb­ing of Pales­tini­ans, their eco­nomic block­ade and ex­pan­sion of Jewish set­tle­ments in oc­cu­pied Arab land. Mustafa Bargh­outi, head of the Pales­tinian Na­tional Ini­tia­tive, rightly be­lieves Is­rael’s de­ci­sion proved that “an al­ter­na­tive na­tional strat­egy that fo­cused on pop­u­lar re­sis­tance and the boy­cott move­ment” was es­sen­tial, in ad­di­tion to rec­on­cil­ing feud­ing par­ties Ha­mas and Fatah. The out­right re­jec­tion of French plan by Ne­tanyahu is a clear cut man­i­fes­ta­tion of the fact that Is­rael is ge­net­i­cally op­posed to peace and there­fore, there was no hope for a peace­ful set­tle­ment of the con­flict. The world will have to adopt a for­mi­da­ble stand telling Is­rael that noth­ing is ac­cept­able un­til and un­less Pales­tini­ans are treated as a sov­er­eign en­tity and the two-state so­lu­tion is at­tained, as per the 1967 bor­ders.

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