The dangers of ignoring context

The rising violence between Israelis and Palestinians is extremely worrying, but it is not all one way, and its context cannot new conveniently ignored. 

Here’s a 22 point plan for peace in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

Entrench Israel’s illegal occupation of Palestinian lands.

Never let a chance go by to duplicitously conflate Hamas and some in Fatah with the Islamic State/ISIS/ISIL so as to gild the imperiled-Israeli lilly.

Never accept as enough Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas‘ condemnation of such horrific Palestinian attacks on Jews as this week’s in the synagogue.    

Insist negotiations are the only way for a Palestinian state to emerge, while consistently announcing new Jewish-only settlements on the land that was to be that state.

Unilaterally announce the state acquisition of thousands of acres of Palestinian land and  blithely ignore international appeals to desist in the interest of peace.

Kill thousands of Palestinians in the sealed prison of Gaza in a brutally disproportionate response to the (also criminal) Hamas rocket fire.

Step up mass arrests of Palestinians under the ‘Israel’s security is paramount‘ cop out.

Reintroduce the illegal process of collective punishment of families and entire Palestinian districts when a Palestinian is suspected of a crime against Israelis.

Always refer to Palestinian criminals as terrorists.

Even when Palestinian perpetrators are killed in a situation such as this week’s appalling slaying make sure their deaths are not punishment enough thus reinforcing the life-price index which values Israeli lives above those of Palestinians (see prisoner exchanges).

Make sure the families of suspected or known Palestinian perpetrators are arrested.

Announce with utter contempt for international law that the homes of perpetrators’ families will be destroyed.

Gloss over the fact that Israeli killers of Palestinians never have their family houses destroyed in retaliation/revenge for the actions of the Jewish perpetrators.

Brush aside all indications that extremist Israelis hanged a Palestinian bus driver...trotting out the ‘suicide‘ label is just as easy as employing the ‘terrorist’ one.

Increase security to keep Palestinians in occupied East Jerusalem under curfew while ignoring the actions of extremist Jews who call for Palestinians to be expelled.

Ignore the racist incitement to kill by Israeli train driver Benny Levy who called for every fellow Jew to, in the interests of the ‘Jewish Nation’ “invest in one small effort” and “run over only one Arab”.   

Make constant reference to footage of Palestinians appearing to celebrate the synagogue murders while conveniently forgetting how Jews took chairs and picnic hampers to high grounds which would give them better views of the slaughter of Gaza.

Ignore the actions of settlers who set fire to the al-Mughayir Mosque near Ramallah.

Ignore the months of extremist Israeli attacks on Al Aqsa Mosque in attempts to get in there to pray.

Unilaterally announce in order to further jeopardise any hope of peace talks that Israel will never give up Jerusalem - described by Netanyahu as the “undivided capital of the Jewish state”, which it is not. 

Most of all, ignore International law and United Nations Security Resolutions over and over again.

Act with impunity at all times.

Well as is very clear to anyone who is even remotely interested in this dispute all 22 points, and indeed a myriad of others, are already in action and guess what?

No peace in sight.

And if there is not peace for Palestinians how on earth does the ‘brains trust‘ which actions the above points expect there to be peace for Jews in Israel.

After 47 years of illegal occupation it is patently ridiculous to believe Palestinians will 

accept what Israel calls peace which is essentially the status quo of of occupation where Palestinians are conveniently locked in Gaza, herded behind the Apartheid Wall or, if in East Jerusalem which is supposed to one day be their capital, subjected to grossly inferior treatment to that of Jewish Israelis in what is commonly called bureaucricide - erosion of all rights to equal health, education, social assistance, marriage laws, visas, housing etc.

Despite all this Palestinians will not just walk off what remains of their lands and give up.

Reintroducing the proven counter-productive punishment of demolishing the family, and even extended family homes of Palestinian criminals - whether they have been killed or not (let alone tried in a court of law) is not a magic recipe for compliance with a colonial apartheid system of rule.

It is unequivocally illegal under Article 33 of the IV Geneva Convention and it will not deter.

Indeed it will only inflame, and here’s where the international community must pay attention.

Perhaps the political leadership in Israel wants a third intifada for two reasons: it makes the already weak Palestinian leadership look even weaker and therefore not capable of running an independent state; and, more violence even from rogue, frustrated, angry and non-aligned young men will ‘hopefully’ gin up international support for the victim occupier. 

The sooner the Palestinian Authority ratifies the Rome Statue the sooner it can put the above points before the International Criminal Court.