Start A Petition

Palestine Is Not Occupied, It Is Colonized


World  (tags: anniversary of the Nakba, 5 June 1967, Zionist colonization, Red Cross, illegal Jewish settlements, Golan Heights, catastrophe, Israeli occupation of East Jerusalem, the West Bank and Gaza, colonization, media, middle-east, palestine, news, world, usa )

Fly
- 15 days ago - palestinechronicle.com
June 5, 2018, marks the 51st anniversary of the Israeli occupation of East Jerusalem, the West Bank and Gaza.



Select names from your address book   |   Help
   

We hate spam. We do not sell or share the email addresses you provide.

Comments

fly bird (26)
Thursday June 7, 2018, 3:55 am
June 5, 2018, marks the 51st anniversary of the Israeli occupation of East Jerusalem, the West Bank and Gaza.

But, unlike the massive popular mobilization that preceded the anniversary of the Nakba – the catastrophic destruction of Palestine in 1948 – on 15 May the anniversary of the occupation is hardly generating equal mobilization.

The unsurprising death of the ‘peace process’ and the inevitable demise of the ‘two-state solution’ has shifted the focus from ending the occupation per se to the larger, and more encompassing, problem of Israel’s colonialism throughout Palestine.

Grassroots mobilization in Gaza and the West Bank, and among Palestinian Bedouin communities in the Naqab Desert, are, once more, widening the Palestinian people’s sense of national aspirations. Thanks to the limited vision of the Palestinian leadership those aspirations have, for decades, been confined to Gaza and the West Bank.

In some sense, the ‘Israeli occupation’ is no longer an occupation as per international standards and definitions. It is merely a phase of the Zionist colonization of historic Palestine, a process that began over a 100 years ago, and carries on to this day.

“The law of occupation is primarily motivated by humanitarian consideration; it is solely the facts on the ground that determine its application”, states the International Committee of the Red Cross website.

It is for practical purposes that we often utilize the term ‘occupation’ with reference to Israel’s colonization of Palestinian land, occupied after 5 June 1967. The term allows for the constant emphasis on humanitarian rules that are meant to govern Israel’s behavior as the occupying power.

However, Israel has already, and repeatedly, violated most conditions of what constitutes an ‘occupation’ from an international law perspective, as articulated in the 1907 Hague Regulations (articles 42-56) and the 1949 Fourth Geneva Convention.

According to these definitions, an ‘occupation’ is a provisional phase, a temporary situation that is meant to end with the implementation of international law regarding that particular situation.

‘Military occupation’ is not the sovereignty of the occupier over the occupied; it cannot include the transfer of citizens from the territories of the occupying power to occupied land; it cannot include ethnic cleansing; destruction of properties; collective punishment and annexation.

It is often argued that Israel is an occupier that has violated the rules of occupation as stated in international law.

This would have been the case a year, two or five years after the original occupation had taken place, but not 51 years later. Since then, the occupation has turned into long-term colonization.

An obvious proof is Israel’s annexation of occupied land, including the Syrian Golan Heights and Palestinian East Jerusalem in 1981. That decision had no regard for international law, humanitarian law or any other law.

Israeli politicians have, for years, openly debated the annexation of the West Bank, especially areas that are populated with illegal Jewish settlements, which are built contrary to international law.

Those hundreds of settlements that Israel has been building in the West Bank and East Jerusalem are not meant as temporary structures.

Dividing the West Bank into three zones, areas A, B and C, each governed according to different political diktats and military roles, has little precedent in international law.

Israel argues that, contrary to international law, it is no longer an occupying power in Gaza; however, an Israel land, maritime and aerial siege has been imposed on the Strip for over 11 years. From successive Israeli wars that have killed thousands, to a hermetic blockade that has pushed the Palestinian population to the brink of starvation, Gaza subsists in isolation.

Gaza is an ‘occupied territory’ by name only, without any of the humanitarian rules applied. In the last 10 weeks alone, over 120 unarmed protesters, journalists, and medics were killed and 13,000 wounded, yet the international community and law remain inept, unable to face or challenge Israeli leaders or to overpower equally cold-hearted American vetoes.

The Palestinian Occupied Territories have, long ago, crossed the line from being occupied to being colonized. But there are reasons that we are trapped in old definitions, leading amongst them is American political hegemony over the legal and political discourses pertaining to Palestine.

One of the main political and legal achievements of the Israeli war – which was carried out with full US support – on several Arab countries in June 1967 is the redefining of the legal and political language on Palestine.

Prior to that war, the discussion was mostly dominated by such urgent issues as the ‘Right of Return’ for Palestinian refugees to go back to their homes and properties in historic Palestine.

The June war shifted the balance of power completely and cemented America’s role as Israel’s main backer on the international stage.

Several UN Security Council resolutions were passed to delegitimize the Israeli occupation: UNSCR 242, UNSCR 338, and the less talked about but equally significant UNSCR 497.

Resolution 242 of 1967 demanded “withdrawal of Israel armed forces” from the territories it occupied in the June war. Resolution 338, which followed the war of 1973, accentuated and clarified that demand. Resolution 497 of 1981 was a response to Israel’s annexation of the Golan Heights. It rendered such a move “null and void and without international and legal effect”.

The same applied to the annexation of Jerusalem as to any colonial constructions or any Israeli attempts aimed at changing the legal status of the West Bank.

But Israel is operating with an entirely different mindset.

Considering that anywhere between 600,000 to 750,000 Israeli Jews now live in the ‘Occupied Territories’, and that the largest settlement of Modi’in Illit houses more than 64,000 Israeli Jews, one has to wonder what form of military occupation blue-print Israel is implementing, anyway?

Israel is a settler colonial project, which began when the Zionist movement aspired to build an exclusive homeland for Jews in Palestine, at the expense of the native inhabitants of that land in the late 19th century.

Nothing has changed since. Only facades, legal definitions, and political discourse. The truth is that Palestinians continue to suffer the consequences of Zionist colonialism and they will continue to carry that burden until that original sin is boldly confronted and justly remedied.

– Ramzy Baroud is a journalist, author and editor of Palestine Chronicle. His forthcoming book is ‘The Last Earth: A Palestinian Story’ (Pluto Press, London). Baroud has a Ph.D. in Palestine Studies from the University of Exeter and is a Non-Resident Scholar at Orfalea Center for Global and International Studies, University of California Santa Barbara. His website is www.ramzybaroud.net.

http://www.palestinechronicle.com/palestine-is-not-occupied-it-is-colonized/
 

Evelyn B (62)
Thursday June 7, 2018, 5:49 am
Colonised - Annexed -
First stage - eliminate any form of recognised border to Israel ...
That is effectively already achieved - the "Green Line" is not accepted, not shown on Israeli maps - and every effort to show realistic borders is shot down by pro-Zionists, AIPAC, hasbara believers ...
And what is worse, they manage to get APOLOGIES from any media who use accurate maps of Palestinian & Israeli zones within what should be recognised as (formally recognised) Palestine/ Occupied Territories ...

Once they manage to ensure that nobody dares show accurate maps of formal borders, the next stage will be facilitated ... elimination of remaining Palestinian zones in the land "annexed" by Israel.
"Annexed" being the term that would authorise domination by the Israeli government in ways that International Law forbids Occupying Powers to act.

And please note - steps to revise vocabulary from "occupied" to "annexed" have already started.

East Jerusalem is now labelled "Annexed" by Israel (and most of the world has got used to the term ...)
The Golan Heights are now labelled "Annexed" ... or just described as part of Israel.

And now there are moves to call the West Bank (Sorry - they call the area Judea & Samaria ... which distracts from the reality that they're talking of the West Bank, Occupied Palestinian Territories ) "Annexed". Obviously, starting with the (illegal) settlements, which would automatically become "legal" under International Law if the area is ANNEXED, not OCCUPIED.

A big impact of a "little" change in vocabulary
 

fly bird (26)
Thursday June 7, 2018, 1:41 pm

Remote control repression: Israel tested its latest weapons against the Great March of Return
May 23, 2018

Over the course of the Great March of Return protests which started on 30 March, 115 Palestinians were killed and a further 13,000 were injured. Many were shot by live ammunition fired from Israeli positions behind the nominal Gaza-Israel border. Tear gas rained down on protesters from unmanned drones that hovered in the skies. Butterfly bullets shattered the limbs of scores of Palestinians.

This was the repression of protesters by remote control. It was cold, clinical and calculated, with devastating results. Israel is one of the world’s leading developers of high-tech weapons and munitions, and the Great March of Return presented an ideal opportunity to experiment with its latest products. With a guinea pig population of almost two million Palestinians held under siege in Gaza, Israel can boast of its technology and weaponry as being “battle proven” in a corporate world unconcerned about ethics.

Much focus has been given to Israel’s use of drones to drop tear gas on Palestinian protesters and journalists covering the protests. The drones were first seen back in March when footage by Lebanese Al-Mayadeen TV appeared to show small aerial devices dropping gas canisters on anyone close to the Gaza-Israel border. The Times of Israel reported that “a spokesperson for the Israel Defence Forces said the UAV [unmanned aerial vehicle] was not operated by the army but by the Border Police.” The Border Police declined to comment.

In an investigation into Israel’s use of drones in this way, Middle East Eye (MEE) noted that “there appear to be three types of drones being used to disperse the gas.” The first is known as the “Cyclone Riot Control Drone System” and is developed by Israeli company ISPRA. The others are believed to have been used for the first time against Great March protesters, with MEE explaining that one is “a drone that releases gas directly from the craft like an aerosol” and the second “a helicopter-style drone which carries rubber bursting grenades with metal tops that disperse gas as they fall.”

Yet drones are not the whole story. Not only has Israel fired live ammunition into crowds of protesters, but reports have also surfaced about the use of “butterfly bullets”. According to an article by Al Jazeera earlier this month,


Medics on the ground say Israeli forces are shooting at demonstrators with a new type of round — never seen before — known as the ‘butterfly bullet’, which explodes upon impact, pulverising tissue, arteries and bone, while causing severe internal injuries.

It is believed that it was these “butterfly bullets” that killed Palestinian journalists Yaser Murtaja and Ahmed Abu-Hussein, who were shot while reporting from Gaza despite being clearly marked as Press. The pair were shot in the abdomen which, according to Gaza’s Health Ministry spokesperson Ashraf Al-Qedra, resulted in “all of their internal organs [being] totally destroyed, pulverised.” He added that the bullets are the deadliest that the Israeli army has ever used.

READ: Medics in Gaza report Israel forces using devastating ‘butterfly bullet’

Israel’s use of these new bullets has been extensive. According to a report by Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF, Doctors Without Borders), “half of the more than 500 patients we have admitted in our clinics have injuries where the bullet has literally destroyed tissue after having pulverised the bone.” The report also noted that the number of patients treated in MSF clinics in the first three weeks of the Great March of Return alone “[was] more than the number we treated throughout all of 2014, when Israel’s military Operation Protective Edge was launched over the Gaza Strip.”

Israel’s use of its latest technology against Palestinians is nothing new. Writing in 2006 in the wake of Israel’s “disengagement” from Gaza, during which time Israel withdrew some 8,000 illegal settlers from their positions in the Strip, Darryl Li of the University of Chicago referred to Gaza as a “laboratory”. According to Li, Gaza is “a space where Israel tests and refines various techniques of management, continuously experimenting in search of an optimal balance between maximum control over the territory and minimum responsibility for its non-Jewish population.” He quoted Amos Yadlin, then head of Israeli military intelligence, as saying: “Our vision of air control zeroes in on the notion of control. We’re looking at how you control a city or a territory from the air when it’s no longer legitimate to hold or occupy that territory on the ground.”

It is clear that Israel’s use of new technologies to quell the Great March of Return, therefore, forms just one part of its continuing quest to exert control over Gaza and its besieged population. Drones provide a detached method of control that requires minimal risk for Israel’s own forces and creates space to argue that “its hands are clean” when it comes to international PR. Simultaneously, the devastating effect of the newly-introduced “butterfly bullet” represents a new level of disregard for Palestinian life, as Israel tests its new technologies on a captive population for which it seeks to bear “minimum responsibility”.

The Great March of Return protests acted as a laboratory for Israel to trial its latest technologies in a real-life situation. This provides concrete evidence of the technologies’ efficacy, which can then be used as fuel for international arms trade deals. ISPRA, the company that manufactures the “Cyclone Drone” mentioned above, claims on its website to offer “smart solutions for crowd control” based on “technical knowhow with practical field experience.” As “a leading global supplier for police and defence forces around the world including USA, Canada, Europe, Asia, Central & South America and Africa,” ISPRA and others like it will no doubt benefit in financial and reputational terms from the “successful” way that its products were used against Palestinian protesters in the Great March of Return. As long as international defence and police forces around the world continue to purchase such products, Palestinians will continue to pay with their lives.

READ: Israel army changed open fire regulations in Gaza

https://www.facebook.com/middleeastmonitor/posts/10156457166766926/

https://www.middleeastmonitor.com/20180523-remote-control-repression-israel-tested-its-latest-weapons-against-the-great-march-of-return/
 

fly bird (26)
Thursday June 7, 2018, 8:45 pm
Bedouin Village of Al-Araqib Demolished for 129th Time.
June 8, 2018

Palestinian bedouin woman stands next to her destroyed tent in the village of Atouf in the Jordan Valley (AFP, File)

Israeli authorities demolished the Bedouin village of al-Araqib for the 129th time on Thursday, WAFA reported, according to Ma’an.

Thursday’s demolition marked the second time since April that the community has been targeted.

The Israeli demolitions of al-Araqib, located in the south of Israel’s Negev desert, are carried out in attempts to force the Bedouin population to relocate to government-zoned townships. Rights groups say that demolition is a central Israeli policy aimed at removing the indigenous Palestinian population, clearing the way for the expansion of Jewish Israeli communities.

Like the 34 other Bedouin villages “unrecognized” by Israel, al-Araqib does not receive any services from the Israeli government and is constantly subjected to the threats of expulsion and home demolition.


The Association for Civil Rights in Israel (ACRI) believe that over half of the approximately 160,000 Bedouins in the Negev reside in villages not recognized as legal by Israel.

These “unrecognized” villages were established in the Negev soon after the 1948 Arab-Israeli war, following the creation of the state of Israel, when an estimated 750,000 Palestinians were forcibly expelled from their homes and made refugees.

Many of the Bedouins were forcibly transferred to the village sites during the 17-year period when Palestinians inside Israel were governed under Israeli military law, which ended shortly before Israel’s military takeover of Gaza and the West Bank, including East Jerusalem, in 1967.

Now more than 60 years later, the villages have yet to be recognized by Israel and live under constant threats of demolition and forcible removal.

http://imemc.org/article/bedouin-village-of-al-araqib-demolished-for-129th-time/
 

Danuta W (1250)
Friday June 8, 2018, 3:57 am
noted
 

fly bird (26)
Friday June 8, 2018, 8:50 pm
Thank you for that important clarification, Evelyn!!
One change in wording .. "occupied' to "annexation", to 'clear' the way to 'legalize' more theft of Palestinian territories!!
Sneaky, disgusting, and STILL illegal!

Palestinian Courage Should Spur International Action
by Rick Sterling / June 6th, 2018

After 70 years, the Israeli-Palestinian conflict is still unresolved. The conflict simmers for a few years, then erupts again with new massacres and violence. This article describes recent events, the failure of the “two state solution” and need for a different approach.

In the past couple months, Israeli Defence Force (IDF) soldiers have killed 118 Palestinian protesters and seriously wounded many thousands more. The protesters were unarmed and no threat to the soldiers. Gaza hospitals overflow with victims.

In the wake of this violence, human rights groups filed a legal petition to make it unlawful for Israeli soldiers to fire on unarmed protesters. Last week the Israeli Supreme Court rejected the petition.

Israeli violence is usually portrayed as a “response” to Palestinian violence, but the reality is the opposite. The sequence of recent events is as follows:

– From the end of March til May 25, Palestinians in Gaza protested against their oppression as close as they could get to the border fences. About 118 were killed and many thousands seriously injured by Israeli snipers. They were all shot inside Gaza.

– On May 27 – 28, the Israeli military launched tank mortars at Palestinian military outposts inside Gaza, killing four.

– Next day, on May 29, Palestinian militants launched unguided mortars into nearby Israel. Most of them fell harmlessly and there were no Israeli casualties.

– Next day, on May 30, Israeli jets and helicopters launched guided missiles and bombs on 65 different locations within Gaza.

Clearly, the violence started with Israelis killing protesters and then militants inside Gaza, but it’s not portrayed that way. Time magazine began its article with, “Palestinian militants bombarded southern Israel….”

Pro Israel advocates wish to prevent people from seeing what is really happening. They know the potential damage if people see video such as Israeli snipers celebrating the shooting of unarmed protesters. To prevent this, a proposed law will make it illegal to photograph or video record Israeli soldiers. Palestinian journalists have condemned this attempt to criminalize journalism.

The Reality of the Israeli Occupation

Israel calls itself the “Startup Nation” because of the economic and technological achievements. But in Gaza and the West Bank, Israeli policies and actions strangle the economies and worsen living conditions.

Palestinians in Gaza are kept separate from Palestinians in the West Bank. There is no trade, travel or inter-family visitation. This is in violation of international agreements including the Oslo Accords.

The claim that Israel “departed” Gaza is false. Israel controls the borders, sky and waters around Gaza, a coastal strip just 5 miles wide by 25 miles in length. Unemployment in Gaza is approaching 50%, the highest unemployment in the world. Fisherman are prevented from going out into deeper waters and shot at when they go beyond Israel’s imposed zone. Gazan farmers cannot export independently. Israel frequently blocks the import and export of crops and products. It is almost impossible to leave Gaza. Even outstanding students winning international scholarships may have their exit denied. The electrical and water treatment facilities have been bombed and destroyed by Israel. Nearly all the drinking water is contaminated. Israel restricts the amount of food permitted to enter Gaza so there is continual shortage leading to nutritional deprivation, stunted growth and anemia.

This situation is not new. Eighteen years ago, Israeli journalist Amira Hass described the history, the facts and statistics as well as her personal experience living in Gaza in the profound book Drinking the Seat at Gaza: Days and Nights in a Land Under Siege. The situation was extremely grim then but keeps getting worse.

At the northern Gaza border, Israel is now building a sea barrier extending far out into the Mediterranean. It will be above and below the water line. A major reason for this expensive project is to block sewage and pollution from the waters in front of Gaza. Because of Israeli attacks on sewage treatment and electrical infrastructure, sewage flows into the sea. Last summer, Zikim Beach in southern Israel had to be closed due to the inflow of sewage from Gaza. The ‘sea barrier’ now in construction will block the sea currents. This will keep the Israeli beach clean and greatly compound the problem in Gaza.

The strangulation, impoverishment and oppression is not confined to Gaza. In the West Bank, Israeli settlements continue to expand. This increases the number of check points, restrictions and repression. Travel from Bethlehem to Jerusalem is impossible for most Palestinians. The majority of West Bank water from the aquifers is transferred to Israel or provided cheaply to settlers while Palestinians must buy water and store it in tanks on their rooftops. In the last few years, Israel has made it increasingly difficult or impossible for humanitarian groups to provide medical support including breast cancer screening. A compelling new book titled The Other Side of the Wall describes the daily struggle in the West Bank where Palestinians and international allies protest against the theft of land, abuses, random killings and imprisonments.

Defiant Courage

There seems to be a trend toward greater Palestinian unity and strategic agreement. The tens of thousands of Palestinians protesting in Gaza were unarmed and united behind the Palestinian flag rather than separate party or movement flags of Hamas, Islamic Jihad, PFLP, DFLP, etc..

The Palestinian protesters in Gaza show remarkable courage. Beginning on Friday March 30, they have returned week after week despite seeing thousands of their fellows shot and wounded or killed.

In an article titled “The Gaza Fence that Separates the Brave from the Cowardly“, Amira Hass wrote:


The desperate courage demonstrated by tens of thousands of citizens of Gaza over the past few weeks in general and on Monday in particular hints at the energies, the talents, the dreams, the creativity and the vitality of the inhabitants of this strip of land – who have been subjected to a 27 year policy of closure and siege aimed at suffocating and crushing them.

Steadfast and Persistent

Palestinian resistance continues despite Israeli violence and bloodshed. Seven years ago Palestinian refugees in Syria and Lebanon held “March of Return” protests at the northern borders. Israeli soldiers killed 13 and wounded many more.

In recent days, Gazans have again challenged the Israeli port blockade which prevents ships from departing or arriving. International solidarity with the Palestinian cause is also persistent. Three ships (two Swedish and one Norwegian) recently departed Scandinavia heading for the Mediterranean Sea and Gaza. Named the 2018 Freedom Flotilla, the ships are carrying dozens of international citizens to again demand that Israel stop its blockade of Gaza.

Despite the huge imbalance today, time may be on the side of the Palestinian cause. Systemic apartheid in South Africa existed for a long time and seemed strong. But ultimately it collapsed quickly. The same may unfold in Israel/Palestine.

Today, South Africa is an important supporter of the Palestinian cause. South Africa was the first nation to recall its ambassador to protest the “indiscriminate and grave Israeli attack” in Gaza.

Israel has the military might but Palestinian resistance and courage persists. The Palestinian population is steadfast, persistent and growing. They have increasing number of allies who support their cause. Young American Jews are unlike their parents and increasingly critical of Israeli policies. Some courageous Israelis, such as Miko Peled, speak out unequivocally that Israeli apartheid must end and be replaced by one state with democracy and equality for all. A million registered Palestinian refugees live in Lebanon and Syria, patiently waiting. They have not forgotten their legal claim and right to return.

The recent bloodshed and massacres underscore the fact that there is no solution on the current path. It only leads to increasingly unlivable conditions in Gaza plus more illegal settlements and oppression in the West Bank. The so-called “two state solution” has been dead for many years and should be forgotten. As happened in South Africa, the international community can and should help. It is time to increase international pressure and expand BDS (boycott, divestment and sanctions) against Israel to help bring a peaceful end to this conflict with its constant oppression and recurring massacres.

The alternative is very grim. As described by Israeli journalist Gideon Levy:


The truth is that Israel is well prepared to massacre hundreds and thousands, and to expel tens of thousands. Nothing will stop it. This is the end of conscience, the show of morality is over. The last few days’ events have proved it decisively. The tracks have been laid, the infrastructure for the horror has been cast. Dozens of years of brainwashing, demonization and dehumanization have borne fruit. The alliance between the politicians and the media to suppress reality and deny it has succeeded. Israel is set to commit horrors. Nobody will stand in its way any longer. Not from within or from without.

Palestinian courage should spur international action.

• First published in RT

https://dissidentvoice.org/2018/06/palestinian-courage-should-spur-international-action/
 
Or, log in with your
Facebook account:
Please add your comment: (plain text only please. Allowable HTML: <a>)


Track Comments: Notify me with a personal message when other people comment on this story


Loading Noted By...Please Wait

 


butterfly credits on the news network

  • credits for vetting a newly submitted story
  • credits for vetting any other story
  • credits for leaving a comment
learn more

Most Active Today in World





 
Content and comments expressed here are the opinions of Care2 users and not necessarily that of Care2.com or its affiliates.

New to Care2? Start Here.