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#BTColumn – Israel-Palestine conflict

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Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed by this author are their own and do not represent the official position of the Barbados Today Inc.

by Dr. Peter Laurie

1.The Jewish people have a legal and moral right to establish their homeland in Palestine and they have done so (no, Zionism is not racism as proclaimed by the 1975 UN General Assembly Resolution, against which Barbados voted).

2. The Palestinian people (who, according to one historical conjecture, are the descendants of the Jews left behind in Jerusalem during the Babylonian exile: a savage historical irony if true) have a legal and moral right to establish their homeland in Palestine, but they have not been able to do so as yet (this is referred to nostalgically as the two-state solution).

3. Both the Israelis and the Palestinians are inflicted, in differing ways, with severe political dysfunction: they are both ungovernable (the Palestinians more so, deeply divided as they are between a weak and corrupt Fatah, that rules the West Bank and a stronger, equally corrupt and dangerous Hamas that rules Gaza), and lurch from one political crisis to another, thus are both incapable of conducting rational negotiations leading to a ‘just and lasting peace’.

4. The extreme rightwing Israeli political parties, led by Prime Minister Netanyahu’s Likud, wish to annex all the land Israel acquired in the 1967 War and currently considered internationally as occupied territory: East Jerusalem, the West Bank, the Golan Heights, and Gaza; and they will be able to do so because the US under Trump encouraged them; other great powers turn a blind eye; and  the major Arab countries are fed up with the Palestinians and just wish to live in peace with Israel; although the fly in the ointment is the  benighted theocracy that rules Iran, which, not being an Arab country, does not give a damn about the Palestinians or any other Arabs for that matter, but will use any excuse to dominate the Middle East by eliminating Israel (and Saudi Arabia, now led by a murderous nutjob).

5. The extreme leftwing Palestinian political party (Hamas) wishes to wipe Israel (and its inhabitants) off the map, but they can do so only by acquiring a nuclear weapon (highly unlikely), or getting some other state to act on their behalf (unlikely but possible).

6. If the Israelis annex the occupied territories as listed above (and Netanyahu, the most corrupt politician in Israel’s history, has promised to do so) they face three options:

a) continue Jewish settlements in the occupied territories while disenfranchising the Palestinian inhabitants and confining them to ‘Bantustans’, making them second hand citizens: ie a form of apartheid;

b) forcibly expel the Palestinians from the annexed lands (as in the forced expulsion of Jews from Europe in the 14th century);

c) render them all medically incapable of reproducing (tried by the Nazis against the Jews in Germany and now fashionable elsewhere) so that in a generation they will die out; or

d) exterminate them (Hitler’s final solution).

Dr. Peter Laurie is a retired permanent secretary and head of the Foreign Service who once served as Barbados’ Ambassador to the United States.

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