Israeli pronouncement on policing West Bank solidifies one-state apartheid regime — Erekat

Israel/Palestine
on 12 Comments

The latest area of contention between Israel and the Palestinian leadership is urban centers across the West Bank and just who is running security on the ground.

Late last night in a joint statement by Israel Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, Defense Minister Moshe Ya’alon and IDF Chief-of-Staff Gadi Eisenkot, the three said they were in charge.

“The IDF maintains – and will maintain – the possibility of entering Area A, and anywhere necessary, according to operational needs,” said the release, closing, “There is no other agreement with the Palestinians.”

The announcement put to bed a debate brewing for weeks within Israel’s security establishment about suspending incursions as a means to calm tensions amid six months of increased violence. Since last October Palestinian attackers have killed at least 30 Israelis and Israeli forces have killed more than 180 Palestinians.

Netanyahu was rumored to favor the withdrawal of forces, but his critics argued against a pullout in a meeting of Israel’s cabinet hours before the prime minister and security officials released their statement.

The Israeli outlet YNet reported an “unprecedented” dispute broke, according to a source in the meeting. The most serious incident arose between the prime minister and Education Minister Naftali Bennett who leads the far-right party Bayit Yehudi and is regarded as a power-challenger to Netanyahu.

Netanyahu reportedly chided Bennett, “Calm down, or I’ll fire you,” to which Bennett responded sharply, “You can do whatever you want, I’ll keep fighting for my security positions.”

Netanyahu then added, “You aren’t running things here.” But within hours it was Bennett’s will and not the prime minister’s that was affirmed by the security cabinet.

Yet under the letter of the law about Israeli and Palestinian security relations established through previous agreements inked by both parties more than two decades ago, West Bank urban areas are off-limits to Israeli forces. 

The zones of just where and when the army can enter the occupied territory were outlined in 1993 in the Oslo Accords. Israel and the Palestinian leadership agreed to divided the region into policing districts, Area A, Area B, and Area C.

Israeli forces are prohibited from entering Area A, comprised of disconnected territorial islands encompassing the Palestinian metropolis of Ramallah and all other large cities. Turning over Palestinian cities to Palestinian security was viewed at the time as the foundation of readying the West Bank and Gaza for sovereignty. A cornerstone was the build-up of Palestinian security forces. Today they number more than 50,000 officers.

Despite protocol, Israeli forces do enter Area A nightly, mostly for arrest operations. Palestinians leaders regard this as a tell-tale sign of Israel’s lack of seriousness in working towards a Palestinian state now, or at any point in the future.

More to the point, Palestinians see Israeli soldiers in their cities as why they want out of Oslo and a driving cause of their forays at United Nations for a Security Council resolution to order Israel to turn over the keys to the West Bank and Gaza.

“Israel is being clear about their determination to bury all signed agreements and destroy the prospects for a two-state solution,” head of the PLO Saeb Erekat told me.

“It is clear that Israel is focused in advancing its plans to strengthen their political program of ‘one state and two-systems’ all over historic Palestine, known more commonly as an Apartheid regime,” he said.

Under Oslo’s standards, Israel is obligated to inform the Palestinian Authority of a person of interest instead of raiding Area A itself. It is then the Palestinian responsibility to detain the wanted and turn him over to Israeli security if need be. The arrangement is described as security coordination. Palestinians regard it as the most despised facet of their government, often described as “outsourcing” Israel’s dirty-work to the Palestinian Authority.  

Palestinian leaders understand the doctrine of security coordination is not working in their benefit. Officials are increasingly uneasy about the cost of their protection services. 

Last year a PLO group voted to end security coordination, in effect canceling the Palestinian end of the Oslo Accords. Still, the decision has yet to be implemented. The question now remains, was Israel’s statement on operating in Palestinian cities their version of cutting ties with Oslo?

About Allison Deger

Allison Deger is the Assistant Editor of Mondoweiss.net. Follow her on twitter at @allissoncd.

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12 Responses

  1. ritzl
    April 22, 2016, 1:45 am

    To riff on Lou Reed: And the Labor guys sing….. what?

    Any audible “protest” about this abrogation from the so-called Israeli left?

    I’m starting to get the sense that everything Israel and its anti-Palestinian supporters do now is self-defeating. All these actions, from anti-BDS legislation here to officially abrogating Oslo there, seem to inevitably lead to the opposite of their intended “pro-Israel” image/propaganda effect.

    Is this a sign that they got nothing left (but money influence), have cornered themselves, can no longer hide the reality, and we are AT an actual, demonstrable tipping point a la South Africlast

    Even if we’re not at an advocacy/remedy tipping point, Israel seems bound and determined to cause harm to its own stated best interests. As an example, US Ambassador to Israel, Dan Shapiro, offered up at the recent anti-BDS conference that the US would support a renewed two-state peace process as a mitigator for BDS. This GoI action would sure seem to drive a stake through the heart of that “undead” concept.

    http://mondoweiss.net/2016/03/we-dont-want-to-find-ourselves-in-a-position-like-apartheid-south-africa-a-report-from-israels-first-national-conference-against-bds/

    • ritzl
      April 22, 2016, 1:55 am

      Edit: shb “…everything that they CAN do now…” iow, no options.

  2. Talkback
    April 22, 2016, 2:29 am

    If Palestine can’t become full member of the UN than its Vichy regime should dissolve.

  3. Jakeburbar
    April 22, 2016, 1:23 pm

    The most moral army in the world. Lmao. The IDF are the most corrupt murders the world has ever seen. Benjamin Netanyahu does not want a two-state solution he wants to steal as much land from the Palestinians as he can he’s the biggest murderer the world has ever seen

  4. Jakeburbar
    April 22, 2016, 1:27 pm

    Imagine living in an open-air prison not being able to get medical help not being able to get food for your family not being able to travel living in an open-air prison can you even imagine what the Israeli government is doing to the Palestinians is the same as the Holocaust they’re killing them one at a time as the world watches and does nothing about it I praise Senator Bernie Sanders for telling the truth during the last democratic debate Hillary Clinton is the biggest liar she belongs right next to Netanyahu she’s a liar and a murderer

  5. Talkback
    April 23, 2016, 4:06 am

    More from the only Jewish apartheid state in the miky way:

    “This is the case in the trial of Elor Azaria – the soldier caught on video shooting a wounded Palestinian in the head. […] Shor [the military prosecutor] rushed to reveal his opinion even before the trial began. “The evidence is weak,” he said when he extended the “arrest” of the soldier, “and the level of criminality could be lower than that attributed by the prosecution.”
    http://www.haaretz.com/misc/article-print-page/.premium-1.715527

    Even such a video is not evidence enough in, when it comes to Israeli Jews murdering Nonjews.

  6. Atlantaiconoclast
    April 23, 2016, 2:21 pm

    How many here use the Buycott app whenever you shop? All this talk of BDS, yet so little attention to practical examples of such.

  7. shaun patrick
    April 23, 2016, 7:17 pm

    Abbas is a big part of the problem because his actions stop Israel and the USA paying the price of the occupation. Some of the steps the Palestinians without Abbas can take, suspend for a year armed or actions involving the use of force, join every UN organization available and force the USA to honor their legislation and not fund or participate in these committees, withdraw 100% security cooperation with Israel, for tens of thousands of Gaza residents to sit as close to the boarder as possible and go on a hunger strike, refuse all USA funds, form a Palestinian Ministry of Civil disobedience and wherever possible always play the recording of Netanyahu boasting he is destroying the Oslo accord. Palestinians need to get rid of Abbas and get smart. My suggestions won’t be a solution of themselves but they will start to exact a real price from Israel and the USA

    • talknic
      April 23, 2016, 10:54 pm

      @ shaun patrick April 23, 2016, 7:17 pm

      “Abbas is a big part of the problem because his actions stop Israel and the USA paying the price of the occupation.”

      Israel and the USA didn’t pay the price before Abbas. Israel has never paid the price. It can’t afford now to pay the price without becoming a bankrupt failed state

      “Some of the steps the Palestinians without Abbas can take, suspend for a year armed or actions involving the use of force, join every UN organization available”

      Done under Abbas. Never done prior to Abbas

      ” and force the USA to honor their legislation and not fund or participate in these committees”

      ‘force’ how exactly?

      “withdraw 100% security cooperation with Israel”

      Would result in Israel invading and institution a complete lock down of every inch of territory under the control of the PA

      “for tens of thousands of Gaza residents to sit as close to the boarder as possible and go on a hunger strike, refuse all USA funds, form a Palestinian Ministry of Civil disobedience “

      You’re dreaming.

  8. Ossinev
    April 24, 2016, 7:28 am

    @talknic
    “Would result in Israel invading and institution a complete lock down of every inch of territory under the control of the PA”

    “Under the control !! ” With all due respect that is like saying there is a a tank outside with its gun barrel pointed at my house but don`t worry it`s me who is calling the shots in the kitchen.

    My views echo those of Shaun Patrick. Abbas and his coterie are part of the problem. Erekat in particular with his endless talk of “handing back the keys ” is an embarrassment. He hasn`t got the cojones and it would mess up his 7 star hotels schedule on the annual 2SS circus tour.

    • echinococcus
      April 24, 2016, 1:32 pm

      Just so, Ossinev. In this case the PA traitors do not even call the shots in their kitchen, they only have the right to eliminate their rival resistants –those who mean business. This incomprehensible respect for a puppet Zionist police organization made up of Palestinian collaborators and their BS “state” goes along, in the attitude of many people, with a carved-in-stone respect of a partition illegally bestowed by the colonial powers as being a “legal” justification for the very existence of the illegitimately recognized Zionist entity. Hard to understand what justifies such an attitude.

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