Israel to Europe: Palestinians can’t have a state because they can’t support themselves

Israel/Palestine
on 33 Comments

Shocking report at Haaretz, on Israel’s defiance of the idea of Palestinian statehood. The country has prepared a 44 page report saying that Palestine can’t stand on its own two feet economically, so Europe must prop up the bantustans.

“Another talking point to justify continuing Israel’s apartheid one-state solution,” says Ilene Cohen, who passed this along, and who long supported the two state solution because it was international consensus. Haaretz:

Israel is expected to present a report Wednesday at a donor meeting on Palestinian aid in Brussels claiming that the Palestinian Authority is not sufficiently stable to meet the standards of a well-functioning state..

Israel is expected to emphasize before the donor countries that despite the growth of recent years, the Palestinian Authority still needs foreign aid to survive.

“The fiscal crisis is especially acute because much of the West Bank economy still depends on the public sector and on construction projects, both still heavily financed by foreign aid. It also serves as an alarming warning sign for the stability of the Palestinian economy,” the report said.

This shows what occupation has done to the Palestinian economy, this shows how essential international donor aid is to the Israeli occupation. And this shows why Europeans are becoming increasingly angry about what their aid is supporting.

About Philip Weiss

Philip Weiss is Founder and Co-Editor of Mondoweiss.net.

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33 Responses

  1. seafoid
    March 18, 2012, 12:12 pm

    This was always the plan. Israel systematically destroyed the Palestinian economy starting from 1967.

    Israel forbid Palestinians from developing any meaningful industry in the OPT, from developing financial services, from benefiting from the natural reources of the OPT. It imposed impossible tariffs on Palestinian exports, virtually elimiated freedom of movement in the territories, broke virtually all trade links with Jordan and turned the West Bank into a captive market for cheap Israeli products at the expense of Palestinian ones. When the Oslo process started it convinced the international community to fund development via aid and in 2002 when it reinvaded the West Bank it destroyed the vast majority of development projects.

    With Gaza it has gone even farther. The Strip has been bombed back to the 19th century (if not earlier).

    Europe can’t be expected to continue to underwrite Israel’s insanity. There is enough money in the Jewish community to do so. It isn’t our crisis.

    • Hostage
      March 18, 2012, 6:16 pm

      Israel systematically destroyed the Palestinian economy starting from 1967.

      Yes, the World Bank has been reporting on that situation for years:

      The restrictions on Palestinian economic potential involve more than roadblocks and checkpoints. With due regard to Israel’s security concerns, there is consensus on the paralytic effects of the current physical obstacles placed on the Palestinian economy. In reality, these restrictions go beyond concrete and earth-mounds, and extend to a system of physical and administrative restrictions that prevent the realization of Palestinian economic potential.

      link to siteresources.worldbank.org

      When the British, French, and League of Nations partitioned Ottoman Asia they disrupted regional trade and replaced it with their own “policy of the Open Door”, which favored the members of the League. The British granted long-term concessions, banking charters, and many other key economic privileges to the Zionists, See Barbara J. Smith, The Roots of Separatism in Palestine: British Economic Policy, 1920-1929 (Contemporary Issues in the Middle East), Syracuse Univ., 1993.

      You can’t very easily partition a river, sea port, line of communication, or sole source of essential materials. The UN answer was a proposal to lower the standard of living that the Palestinians had enjoyed during the mandate era by partitioning Palestine into a Jewish state and a non-viable, dependent, Arab state. Many UN member states admitted as much for the record (see the verbatim quote in the link below).

      Rules of Transit and a Plan for an Economic Union were included in the UN partition plan to compensate for those disadvantages, but they were never implemented. That situation, and the role of the Jewish Agency in creating it, is documented in declassified materials published in the State Department’s Foreign Relations (FRUS) series and in the unclassified UN documents themselves. I’ve cited and quoted some of them in the past: http://mondoweiss.net/2011/11/48-is-beginning-to-replace-67-in-discourse-even-at-uva.html/comment-page-1#comment-387523

  2. Justice Please
    March 18, 2012, 12:28 pm

    “Europeans are becoming increasingly angry about what their aid is supporting.”

    Yes, but they have a long way to go. Our political process may be not as paralyzed by the Israel Lobby as is yours in Washington, but they still call the shots.

    Just this week, the leader of Germans main “opposition” party SPD, Sigmar Gabriel, was travelling in the West Bank. He posted on Facebook that conditions there are unacceptable and called them “Apartheid-like”.

    Of course, the thought police were quickly on the case, denouncing him. So he issued an apology hours later, saying that comparing Israel to South Africa was not fair.

    • lyn117
      March 18, 2012, 4:29 pm

      Not fair to who?

      • Justice Please
        March 20, 2012, 6:02 am

        lyn,

        he claimed it being not fair to Israel, since, in his mind, South Africa was worse and different.

    • seafoid
      March 18, 2012, 5:20 pm

      European aid keeps the occupation going. Without it YESHA would have collapsed already.

  3. seafoid
    March 18, 2012, 12:28 pm

    The West Bank- the market for cheap Israeli crap

    “Overall Israeli trade with the PA (goods and services) totaled USD 4.308 billion, an increase of 2.1% compared to 2010. Israeli purchases from the PA amounted to USD 815.9 million , an increase of 18.3%. Israeli sales to the PA amounted to USD 3.492 billion , a decrease of 1.1% compared to 2010.1 Tax revenue transferred by Israel to the PA increased by 5.9%2.

    Palestinian imports (excluding Israel) amounted to USD 1.75 bn , a 9.22% increase compared to the parallel period in the previous year. Palestinian exports (excluding Israel) amounted to USD 105 mn in 2011, a 13% increase compared to the parallel period in the previous year”

    http://www.mfa.gov.il/MFA/HumanitarianAid/Palestinians/Israel_Report_AHLC_March_2012.htm

    So the Palestinians buy USD 3.5 bn of crap from Israel and sell USD 0.8 bn of products to Israel and get nothing for the land and water that Israel has taken since 1967.

    Reparations will run into the tens of billions. Israel can’t afford reparations so the settler project continues.

    And the goys are supposed to prop up the Palestinians indefinitely.

  4. Pixel
    March 18, 2012, 12:37 pm

    I may have missed it but I don’t recall having seen any mention, here, of last week’s John Oliver (The Daily Show) field piece on the UNESCO Palestine funding controversy. It’s “so epic that it takes up two segments, bumped Stewart’s guest…”

    The main “interviewee” is Robert Wexler.

    John Oliver’s UNESCO Expose Part 1 and 2

    Not to be missed.

    • CigarGod
      March 18, 2012, 2:22 pm

      Brilliant!

      I always wonder if Obama leaves his bubble in the office and takes a little vacation with The Daily Show in the evenings.

  5. DICKERSON3870
    March 18, 2012, 12:38 pm

    RE: “Israel is expected to emphasize before the donor countries that despite the growth of recent years, the Palestinian Authority still needs foreign aid to survive.” ~ Weiss

    FROM ELI CLIFTON AT ThinkProgress.org, 1/24/12:

    (excerpt). . . Since October, House Foreign Affairs Committee Chairwoman Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-FL) has held up $190 million in Palestinian aid. The decision to freeze aid came after Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas sought U.N. recognition for an independent Palestinian state. “By providing the Palestinians with $2.5 billion over the last 5 years, the U.S. has only rewarded and reinforced their bad behavior,” Ros-Lehtinen said.
    J Street, the “Pro-Israel, Pro-Peace” organization, supports unfreezing Palestinian aid, issued a statement last week calling on Ros-Lehtinen to “Lift the remaining holds on Palestinian aid — don’t punish Palestinian children with political posturing.”

    SOURCE – http://thinkprogress.org/security/2012/01/24/410668/rep-keith-ellison-urges-congress-to-continue-funding-palestinian-sesame-street/
    P.S. I do not know whether Ros-Lehtinen continues to hold up this $190 million in Palestinian aid.

    • DICKERSON3870
      March 19, 2012, 12:42 pm

      P.S. ALSO SEE: IDF and Ros-Lehtinen share goal: kill any chance for Palestinian state, by Alex Kane, Mondoweiss, 7/22/11

      (excerpts) An important report in today’s Haaretz by Akiva Eldar further confirms the Israeli government’s intention to illegally annex strategic parts of the West Bank. Combined with the push by a top House Republican to codify into law President George W. Bush’s 2004 letter to then-Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon, these latest news reports mean that current efforts for the creation of a Palestinian state are futile. . .
      . . . Reports that Ileana Ros-Lehtinen, a Florida Republican who heads the House Foreign Affairs Committee, is pushing to enshrine Bush’s 2004 letter is just one more indication
      that no matter what happens in September at the United Nations, there will be push back from right-wing American politicians. Ros-Lehtinen’s intention is to effectively make any viable Palestinian state an impossibility. Bush’s letter to Sharon reads:

      In light of new realities on the ground, including already existing major Israeli populations centers, it is unrealistic to expect that the outcome of final status negotiations will be a full and complete return to the armistice lines of 1949

      The reference to “major Israeli population centers” is a nod to Israel’s insistence that it annex settlements such as Ariel and Ma’ale Adumim. Documents leaked as part of Al Jazeera‘s publication of the “Palestine Papers” further confirms that the Bush administration pushed Israeli demands regarding these settlements onto Palestinian negotiators…

      SOURCE – http://mondoweiss.net/2011/07/idf-and-ros-lehtinen-share-goal-kill-any-chance-for-palestinian-state.html

      • Carowhat
        March 20, 2012, 12:49 am

        The constant use of boldface is hard on the eye. It makes me feel as if I’m reading citations (something I have to make myself do). Have you considered italics? Or even better no added any emphasis at all?

  6. Talkback
    March 18, 2012, 1:28 pm

    Israel is very funny, because it controls Palestines economy. It could have also said that the Palestinians are not ready to have a state, because it’s occupied.

    So what was Israel’s economy like on the day of it’s proclamation?!

  7. CigarGod
    March 18, 2012, 2:00 pm

    1. U.S. tax deductible donations to Israel…are a form of direct aid to Israel.
    2. The 3 billion in direct military aid from the USA directly and effectively supports Israel…isn’t it really a form of a yearly welfare check?
    3. There are several billion$ more in indirect aid to Israel from the USA.
    4. How many other western nations also donate to Israel?

    Seems to me, Israel isn’t really self-supporting either…so saying Palestine can’t be a state, is also saying Israel can’t be a state…for the same exact reasons.

    • pabelmont
      March 19, 2012, 5:35 am

      CigarGod: “Seems to me, Israel isn’t really self-supporting either [USA’s aid] …so saying Palestine can’t be a state [because it cannot support itself], is also saying Israel can’t be a state…for the same exact reasons.” Love it! (Good point.)

      • CigarGod
        March 19, 2012, 11:49 am

        Pabelmont:
        Thanks.
        But, you know the standard come-back: “It’s not aid, it’s investment in America, because we spend the money they give us…on American goods”.

        The Palestinian’s could use the same logic…if they were dishonest or illogical: “It’s not aid, it’s an investment. We use the money to buy high starch items from the USA…like Kraft Macaroni and Cheese….which also explains why our rolly polly selves look so well fed.

  8. Blake
    March 18, 2012, 2:09 pm

    In the words of Paul Craig Roberts: “The Israeli state relies entirely on coercion and has no diplomacy. It stands isolated in the world except for the US, which sustains Israel’s existence with money, military weapons, and the US veto in the United Nations. Israel survives on life support from the US. A state that cannot exist without outside support is a failed state.”

    So a pot calling the kettle black kind of argument.

    Also, Palestine was perfectly self sufficient pre-Zionist invasion.

    • teta mother me
      March 18, 2012, 9:45 pm

      apologies if this is a repeat —
      Shawa family: Plight of Palestinian families in exile – Diaspora Mar 13 2012

      ~20 min: “Moderator: What would the sadness be, what is the feeling in your heart when you think about Palestine?
      Shawa: I miss my family, I miss, I miss the sea, I miss the orange groves, I miss the sun, I miss everything about it. And I know the reason I will probably never return, I know I will probably not find any of this left. So. The israelis destroyed. They razed our orange groves. They razed them. They razed our olives. They’ve turned Gaza, which is my home town, they’ve turned Gaza into rubbish. Gaza when I was there was surrounded with beautiful orange groves. It had the whitest beaches you’ve ever seen. It was the most beautiful place on earth. I spent all the summers on the beach, it was beautiful. No longer. It’s gone. Our sea’s polluted. Our earth is polluted. Our water is polluted. Everything is polluted – our atmosphere is polluted. And on top of that, huh, we are imprisoned in that place. I don’t know what to say. What is there to say? Ya. I miss my country, of course I do. But my country as it used to be.
      21.51 I know why they razed our orange groves because our citrus was very strong in the markets and we were competing with them and they didn’t want that. So slowly slowly gradually Gaza was shrunk . . . the water – our water was siphoned to the negev to ‘green’ the desert, if you like, but Gaza was drying up, slowly slowly slowly. These are the people who supposedly suffered in the holocaust. They apply the same methods to us, if not worse.”

      compare Ms. Shawa’s remembered Gaza with Edwin Black’s depiction:

      “[A]s the German Jews of New York were dominating the American Jewish political scene, so, too, would Germans and Germany now determine the realities in a small, underdeveloped stretch of desert by the sea known as Palestine. For hundreds of years, the area had been the kingdom of the Jews. . . .Small groups of Jews had remained throughout the centuries by not until the late nineteenth century . . .did large numbers of Jews begin an experimental return to their ancestral home. Agricultural settlements repeatedly failed in Palestine as Jewish idealists and dreamers tried to force the sandy and swampy wasteland to bloom. But with the steady help of European and American Jewish philanthropists, the Jewish agricultural revival finally began to triumph over the neglected Palestinian terrain.
      By the time airplanes were flying over the Mideast, the future of Jews in Palestine could be seen as green patches against a bleached beige backdrop. The green patches marked orange groves, the economic basis for Jewish survival in the Holy Land. When the young workers came from Russia, Poland, and even the United States, they were frequently settled on groves to grow oranges and other citrus for export. Orange crates became the building blocks of Zionism.” p. 6

      And Etan Bloom explanations of Arthur Ruppin’s actions in establishing Tel Aviv etc. validate Ms. Shawa’s contention that Jewish settlers deliberately destroyed successful Palestinian commerce in Jaffa:

      “Ruppin’s part in the establishment of Tel Aviv demonstrates his dominant position in the social field and reveals some of the guidelines of his culture planning. In his recommendation to the JNF in support of the founding of Tel Aviv he explained that a Jewish urban settlement would create a market for the agriculture produce of the Jewish agriculture sector, and would also divert the flow of capital from the Arabs of Jaffa (who profited from the rent of apartments), into Jewish hands (in: Shavit & Biger 2001, 66). Ruppin explained the attraction of Tel Aviv for immigrants and Jewish capital as being a place where immigrants can live in a “healthy European atmosphere” (in: Shavit & Biger 2001, 24) as opposed to Arab Jaffa. This same policy of separating the Arabs (economically and culturally) from the Jewish cultural space lay behind his decision to build the Hebrew Gymnasia in the Jewish neighborhood of Tel Aviv,”

  9. eljay
    March 18, 2012, 5:13 pm

    >> The report specifies a long line of actions Israel has taken to aid the Palestinian economy in the West Bank and the Gaza Strip …

    The Jewish state’s 60+ years, ON-GOING and offensive (i.e., not defensive) campaign of aggression, oppression, theft, colonization, destruction and murder doesn’t really constitute “aid”.

  10. Philip Munger
    March 18, 2012, 5:23 pm

    In the words of Rachel Corrie, February, 2003:

    This is in the area where Sunday about 150 men were rounded up and contained outside the settlement with gunfire over their heads and around them, while tanks and bulldozers destroyed 25 greenhouses – the livelihoods for 300 people. The explosive was right in front of the greenhouses – right in the point of entry for tanks that might come back again. I was terrified to think that this man felt it was less of a risk to walk out in view of the tanks with his kids than to stay in his house. I was really scared that they were all going to be shot and I tried to stand between them and the tank. This happens every day.

  11. justicewillprevail
    March 18, 2012, 6:00 pm

    And when Europe does build Palestinian infrastructure, solar panels, schools etc. Israel comes along and destroys them, with their usual lame excuses, because the last thing they will allow is a functioning Palestinian state. They want a cowed, brutalised, impoverished people, herded into ghettoes, relentlessly humiliated and attacked, dependent on their brutalisers for the smallest concessions which can be withdrawn at any time. The sadism is a deliberate fascistic strategy. Europe should grow some and tell them where to get off, and place punitive sanctions on them.

  12. Annie Robbins
    March 18, 2012, 7:39 pm

    israel can’t support itself without depending on millions of forced customers to but it’s left over crap. it also doesn’t want to have to pay for all the resources it steals, it depends on free stolen land, free rocks from the quarry to build it’s state, free water, free farmland so it can grow food and sell it to the people who it stole the land from, free olives to make olive oil free vineyard, free everything..all supported by the global community who cannot give anything to or trade anything with palestine without israel being and profiting off being the middle man.

    so who can’t afford it? israel!

  13. stevelaudig
    March 18, 2012, 8:22 pm

    If you [Zionist Occupier Israel] cut off someone’s legs, you will not be heard to argue for any benefit from their not being able to walk. I might suggest that even such an argument violates the Government of Israel’s duty as an occupier. Out now is the only proper argument in response.

  14. Mayhem
    March 18, 2012, 9:08 pm

    It is so convenient to forget how in 2009 there was an economic boom in the West Bank with growth reaching 8%, higher than in Israel or the West. In 2011 the Palestinian Planning Minister said GDP growth was expected to rise to 12% by 2013.
    So what has happened?
    In the Haaretz report to which Philip has referred, it states “The current fiscal situation raises doubts about whether the PA will be able to reduce its dependency in foreign aid in the coming years”. Furthermore it has pointed out that the PA’s fiscal management has contributed to the problem.  A newspaper article in the South African Jewish Report emphasizes that the PA itself   is primarily responsible for it’s demise.
    “There are no Palestinian leaders capable of conducting peace talks,” says Bassam Eid, founder and director of the Palestinian Human Rights Monitoring Group.
    He says the Palestinian leadership is corrupt and Palestinians are worse off under their administration after Oslo.
    Eid also castigated the Palestinian Solidarity Committees around the world for fomenting hatred between Palestinians and Jews that does not exist in Israel or in the territories.
    Eid is a former anti-Israel activist turned critic of the violation of Palestinian human rights by its own leaders.

    • seafoid
      March 19, 2012, 6:45 am

      “Eid also castigated the Palestinian Solidarity Committees around the world for fomenting hatred between Palestinians and Jews that does not exist in Israel or in the territories”

      http://www.haaretz.com/print-edition/news/after-jerusalem-crash-racist-comments-appear-on-netanyahu-s-facebook-page-1.413656

      Racist comments appeared on Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s Facebook page after the school bus crash near Jerusalem on Thursday in which 10 children died and more than 40 were injured.
      Satisfaction that “only Palestinians” were the victims and slogans such as “Death to Arabs, why do we help them?” were posted on the Facebook pages of Netanyahu, Wallah and the Israel Police.
      Other comments included “Can we send another truck?” and “I’d send a double-trailer to wipe out all those shits” after the bus overturned when it crashed into a truck.
      “Relax, it’s Palestinian children,” someone wrote on Wallah’s Facebook page. Others wrote “Great! Fewer terrorists” and “May there be such buses every day.” Similar comments were posted on the police’s Facebook page, including “When they grew up they’d be terrorists …. God nipped them in the bud.”

      • piotr
        March 19, 2012, 8:48 am

        These were quite unrepresentative and suspicious comments which were promptly removed.

        More typical are comments like for the article of military dog biting Palestinian protester “Good doggy!”. And if you see MODERATED comments in ynet or jpost, the level of hatred is totally depressing.

    • Hostage
      March 19, 2012, 10:59 am

      It is so convenient to forget how in 2009 there was an economic boom in the West Bank with growth reaching 8%, higher than in Israel or the West. In 2011 the Palestinian Planning Minister said GDP growth was expected to rise to 12% by 2013.

      The World Bank and IMF reports didn’t overlook the so-called economic boom. They both concluded the economy was being run for the benefit of the illegal Israeli settlers.

      FYI, Israel has a GDP of over $2oo billion, while Palestine’s GDP is still under $5 billion. The differences in the sizes of the two populations and their educational levels don’t account for those differences either. For example, Dr Hassan A El-Najjar has noted that:

      The UN educational program was so successful that the Palestinian level of higher education in the 1970s was among the highest in the world. The ratio of Palestinian college students to the general Palestinian population was 20/1000 in 1977. Among the refugee segment of the population, it was even higher reaching about 47/1000 in 1986. For other leading societies, the ratio was 30/1000 for the U.S., 18/1000 for USSR, 9/1000 for France, 8/1000 for England, and 4/1000 for the Arab states as a whole. –See Hassan A El-Najjar, “The Gulf War”, Amazone Press, 2001

  15. Dagon
    March 18, 2012, 10:57 pm

    What chutspa.Why can’t somebody help this guy .He can’t live because i shot him.

  16. pabelmont
    March 19, 2012, 5:45 am

    As Israeli actions (and claims) become more and more outrageous, the anger in knowledgeable people (and governments) must be growing to a boiling point. There are two possible outcomes (assuming steadily continuing grotesque Israeli misbehavior): either [1] the nations finally take stern action against Israel (like the cook turning off the fire under a pressure cooker before it explodes); or else [2] the whole situation explodes — going from what we have today, which seems manageable, to something so ugly that it cannot longer be ignored, let AIPAC and its European allies do as they may — something like massive deaths, massive expulsions.

    In other words, as a car drives toward a sturdy brick wall at 60 MPH, it is sure to stop, but the only question is whether it will stop by smashing into the brick wall ([2] above) or by the driver putting on the brakes for a more gentle stop ([1] above).

    Israel’s plan, however, is to “boil the frog” (the Palestinians, but also the USA and EU) so gently that the moment for taking stern action is never recognized. Frogs are not very clever in such a situation — as we’ve noticed.

  17. Shingo
    March 19, 2012, 7:36 am

    You goota love the Israelis.

    First they argue that they cannot negotiate with the Palestinians because the leadership is split between Fatah and Hamas. Then when Fatah and Hamas talk about a unity government, they insist they cannot deal with Fatah if Fatah is making peace with Hamas.

    Then they order Fatah to launch a coup to overthow Hamas.

    Now this crap!!

    • seafoid
      March 19, 2012, 10:52 am

      Those Israelis are so smart. But they never figured out what to do with the Palestinians after they strangled their state.

      40 years after Golda Meir said there was no such thing as a Palestinian the word comes up 115 million times on Google.

  18. Hostage
    March 19, 2012, 12:33 pm

    40 years after Golda Meir said there was no such thing as a Palestinian the word comes up 115 million times on Google.

    Jimmy Wales has the same problem. See the entry for Arab Citizens of Israel. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Arab_citizens_of_Israel

    The Zionists who propagandize so much about “the Jews from Arab Lands”, do not consider them to be “Arab citizens of Israel” (although there can be no Israeli nationality separate from the Jewish people according to HCJ 630/70 Tamarin v. State of Israel [1970] IsrSC 26(1) 197).

    In fact, there is no recognized “Arab nationality” anywhere else in the world, except for the people registered as such by the government of Israel – which denies the Palestinians their own nationality for purposes of their apartheid policy, e.g. the following inhuman acts committed for the purpose of establishing and maintaining domination by one racial group of persons over any other racial group of persons and systematically oppressing them:

    Any legislative measures and other measures calculated to prevent a racial group or groups from participation in the political, social, economic and cultural life of the country and the deliberate creation of conditions preventing the full development of such a group or groups, in particular by denying to members of a racial group or groups basic human rights and freedoms, including the right to work, the right to form recognized trade unions, the right to education, the right to leave and to return to their country, the right to a nationality, the right to freedom of movement and residence, the right to freedom of opinion and expression, and the right to freedom of peaceful assembly and association;

    –http://www.jus.uio.no/english/services/library/treaties/02/2-10/crime-apartheid.xml

    For a fuller explanation, see “A racism outside of language: Israel’s apartheid”, by Saree Makdisi, in the Pambazuka News, 2010-03-11, Issue 473

    • Woody Tanaka
      March 19, 2012, 1:05 pm

      “Jimmy Wales has the same problem. See the entry for Arab Citizens of Israel. link to en.wikipedia.org”

      Oh, boy, anyone looking for decent truthful information from Ziopedia is in for a shock… The place is lousy with hasbarists.

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