In new book, Ilan Pappé says settler colonialism and apartheid best explain Israeli-Palestinian conflict

Israel/Palestine
on 20 Comments

On any occasion that an activist, academic or political commentator invokes remembrances of South African apartheid to deliberately draw parallels with the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, they can expect an immediate and exacting rebuke.

However, launching his new collaborative book in East Jerusalem on Saturday night, esteemed Israeli historian Ilan Pappé abandoned any pretence of restraint and made the intrepid and timely case that the use of apartheid descriptors when engaging in Israel/Palestine discourse should be an indisputable starting point, not an equivocal theory up for debate. The collection which Pappé has edited, Israel and South Africa: The Many Faces of Apartheid, has assembled contributions from a wide range of respected academics, politicians, journalists and lawyers, that are all rooted in a fundamental position that recognises that the relationship the Israeli state has manufactured with its Palestinian subjects, in Israel and the occupied territories, equates to a form of apartheid.

Pappé was joined in the scenic garden of the French Institute by award winning, Nazareth-based journalist, Jonathan Cook, whose contributory chapter in the book – “Visible Equality as a Confidence Trick” – focuses on the “forgotten Palestinians” who make up 20% of the citizens of Israel.

Ilan Pappé joined by Jonathan Cook in book launch of "Israel and South Africa: The Many Faces of Apartheid" in Jerusalem, on July 23, 2016. (Photo: Ben Clarke)

Ilan Pappé joined by Jonathan Cook in book launch of “Israel and South Africa: The Many Faces of Apartheid” in East Jerusalem, on July 23, 2016. (Photo: Ben Clarke)

Providing introductory remarks to the vast audience that had gathered in the garden, Pappé commented on the necessity of ensuring the paradigm shift, which has been evident over the last 10 or 15 years within marginal spheres of academia and peripheral political systems around the world, gain credence among those Western elites who actually hold power.

“For about 40 or 50 years in many places like this – institutes, universities, academic centres, media and so on – there was one dominant way or paradigm through which the conflict in Palestine had been analysed and this was the paradigm or model of a conflict between two national movements,” he said, explaining the orthodoxy in western thought, “there is one country for which two national movements are fighting for; they have equal right to the land, they have an equal attachment to the land, and hence what you need is to find a compromise that would answer the aspirations of both national movements, given the fact that they both have a justified claim to the land.”

Given that this is the central paradigm for peace that the Quartet (United Nations, USA, European Union and Russia), the main stream media and influential “peace” politicians continue to use, Pappé considers it entirely unsurprising that the main outcome remains the unworkable two-state solution.

What the book endeavours to do, Pappé expounded, is to expose this manifestly deceitful paradigm, and establish a new paradigm, already common amongst activists and marginalised academics, that relates to the reality on the ground; one of “settler-colonialism and its connection with apartheid.” In essence, the conflict is not between two competing national movements with an equal claim to the land, but between a movement of settler-colonialists and a native people.

Israel and South Africa: The Many Faces of Apartheid

Israel and South Africa: The Many Faces of Apartheid

The theoretical framework for the book is formed around this concept and the belief that the natural consequence of settler-colonialism is a system of apartheid which ensures the native people are separated from the settler race.

This depiction of Zionism as a settler-colonialist programme and the state of Israel as an apartheid state also determines the resolution mechanism, said Pappé, facetiously asserting that the notion of the two-state solution may have “produced a lot of Nobel peace prizes, and mountains of documents, and hundreds of academic careers,” but it has provided “nothing on the ground itself!” Using the new paradigm of settler-colonialism, the resolution is simple: the decolonization of Israel/Palestine and the substitution of the Israeli regime with democracy and equality for all.

Pappé was careful in his attempts to justify this new language and the narration the book attempts to proliferate. “Saying that a movement is a settler colonial movement does not mean that I demonize them beyond any repair. No, settler-colonialism is an historical fact,” he said, citing the cases of USA, Australia, New Zealand and Latin America.

The similarities between Israel/Palestine and apartheid South Africa are more striking in the means of what Patrick Woolfe labelled the “logic of elimination” – the method the settler-colonialists used to turn their respective new homes into homelands and rid them of the native people. In the above cited cases, the answer was genocide, but in South Africa and Palestine alternative crimes against humanity were used; ethnic cleansing, dispossession, apartheid.

“The logic of elimination in Palestine was implemented in the ethnic cleansing of Palestine in 1948. This was not a coincidence of war. This was not the result of a war. This was the conclusion of a systematic planning by the settler-colonialist movement of Zionism that wanted to get rid of the native Palestinian population,” explained Pappé. Appearing to be inextricably linked, in the very same year the settler community of whites in South Africa decided to institutionalize the apartheid system there. “They were using these alternative means [to genocide] in South Africa until the fall of apartheid, they are still using these means today, all over Palestine – not just in the West Bank, not just in Gaza,” he concluded; both settler-colonialist movements in this comparative study decided to institutionalize, not through genocide, but through a state apparatus.

The book attempts to analyze this apartheid analogy, its application in Israel/Palestine and its use as a comparative model with apartheid South Africa, through exploring these concepts of language and narration, historical similarities and differences, and basic legal and legislative comparisons. Resolution to the most significant moral debate of our time will only be sought by identifying and understanding the clear implications for international law, activism and policy making that this more accurate paradigm delivers.

A Palestinian man holds a portrait of late South African president Nelson Mandela as he stands in front of Israeli soldiers during clashes between youths and the army following a weekly protest against Israeli occupation in the West Bank village of Bilin on December 6, 2013. (Photo: Issam Rimawi/APA Images)

A Palestinian man holds a portrait of late South African president Nelson Mandela as he stands in front of Israeli soldiers during clashes between youths and the army following a weekly protest against Israeli occupation in the West Bank village of Bilin on December 6, 2013. (Photo: Issam Rimawi/APA Images)

Against this comparative framework, Jonathan Cook’s seminal argument proposed in the book concerns the Palestinian citizens of Israel and their “artificial separation” from those Palestinians in the Occupied Territories. His major conclusion is that separation – or apartheid – and inequality based on ethnic belonging has been codified in Israeli law and therefore protected from international condemnation, but it still very much exists.

Commenting on his own contribution, Cook gave a bold and perceptive analysis that attempted to deal with two of the foremost criticisms of the apartheid comparison with South Africa: first, that the clear separation of ethnicities in South Africa does not exist in Israel, and secondly, that Israel’s Palestinian citizens are afforded a democratic vote that was not afforded to blacks in South Africa.

“Scholars of apartheid South Africa drew a distinction between two aspects of the regime, what they called “petty or trivial apartheid” and what’s known as “grand or resource apartheid”. For most of us the essence of South African apartheid was separate park benches, separate restaurants, separate toilets, separate buses and so on.”

But the scholars “noted that the main goal of apartheid was to restrict the benefits of the state’s key resources, in the case of South Africa that was the land, water and mineral wealth to the white minority,” he explained, “in short, visible segregation was a particular form South African apartheid took, but the content of the apartheid system, its strategic objective was related to resources not park benches.”

By identifying the fact that in Israel “93% of the land is designated as belonging to a global Jewish nation, not the country’s citizens” and recognising that “water as a resource for use in agriculture is also reserved for Jews, and therefore commercial agriculture and the cheap water it depends on are only available to Jews,” through the exploitation of admissions committees that ensure only Jews can access these communities, Cook endeavoured to illustrate that the apartheid evident in Israel is a different form to that which was dominant in South Africa, yet the substance remains the same.

Elucidating, Cook offered that although the physical segregation of the black majority in South Africa was necessary because it created a physical difference and contributed to a sense of security, this is not necessary with the Palestinian minority in Israel. “Israel practices some visible segregation; there are separate living spaces, separate towns, villages, communities, and also separate education systems,” explained Cook, yet this separation serves a different role, “to create a sense of emotional separation between the Jewish and Palestinian populations by keeping members of the two populations apart during their formative years, during childhood, it’s possible to maintain and entrench a tribal and antagonistic identity on both sides.”

Regarding the voting rights of Palestinians, again Cook asserted that this difference relates to the form of apartheid, not to the substance.

“The different electoral considerations reflect the different demographic circumstances the two states found themselves in. In South Africa, the oppressed black population was a large majority, in Israel the Palestinian population is a relatively small minority. South Africa could not afford to give the vote to the black population because it would have risked empowering them. Israel can give its Palestinian citizens a vote because absolutely no power accrues to them as a result.”

Those that oppose the apartheid comparison on these grounds want us to overlook the historical context, said Cook, that the ethnic cleansing of 1948 effectively gerrymandered Israel’s political constituency.

Finishing, Cook attempted to prove that by ignoring the unifying nature of apartheid facing all Palestinians under Israeli rule, Israel is afforded a platform to “claim its policies in the occupied territories are driven by security considerations rather than goalless systematic dispossession and resource theft.”

His compelling peroration derided this approach, “If there’s no apartheid in Israel then maybe Israel is right, the regime it has created in the occupied territories is a necessary response to security threats rather than an integral part of an all embracing apartheid system. I reject that idea,” he declared, “Rather, demonstrating that Israel is practicing apartheid inside its recognized borders is a vital step to confirming that it is also operating an apartheid regime, or worse, in the occupied territories.”

Drawing on expertise from a range of different journalists, lawyers, political scientists and historians from within Israel and the occupied territories, this book will serve as an important tool in advancing the settler-colonial paradigm and the apartheid analogy. This, Pappé argues, will assist with the unblocking of the failed peace process and prepare the ground for the possibility of a resolution.

“Any peace paradigm that retains Israel as a Zionist state has no chance in the world of succeeding,” said Pappé, summarizing, “Similarly to the way that we had to get rid of apartheid, we have to get rid of Zionism before we talk about reconciliation. No other solution will work in this place.”

About Ben Clarke

Ben Clarke is a freelance writer and activist. He has previously worked in New Delhi, India and is currently based in Ramallah, Occupied Palestinian Territories.

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20 Responses

  1. MHughes976
    July 25, 2016, 5:06 pm

    Why is it so necessary to use comparisons, or the apartheid comparison in particular, in order to see what the situation in Palestine is?

    • Mooser
      July 25, 2016, 7:59 pm

      I don’t quite see what you mean, “MHughes976”. If those are the words that apply, why not use them?
      The words have meanings, and the Zionist actions (and ideology) fit the meanings, and the words apply.
      What would be gained by not using them?

      • echinococcus
        July 25, 2016, 9:20 pm

        Especially when this particular word is the object of an international convention, with a well-researched consensus definition that doesn’t leave much room for escape.
        Or: the wheel was invented, no need to restart all over again.

    • echinococcus
      July 25, 2016, 9:32 pm

      Hughes,

      How about this: it is necessary because each one of us has a frame of reference of situations personally or vicariously experienced, situations studied in depth, or with particular interest, etc. A shorthand using what one imagines is the frame of reference common to most people is what we all generally use as a language here.
      Oh well, some of us fail miserably because one’s own frame of reference has been superseded by something different among the new generation. I refer everything to WWII, the German occupation and the Resistance, given that I grew up among people for whom it was a hot, current and omnipresent item –and I can’t ring many bells with the new generation, especially among Americans.
      The Genocide Convention, however, may be a little better known, and it seems that Apartheid is quite a general reference. So why not use it? Do you really want to describe it as something new and unheard of?

    • RoHa
      July 25, 2016, 11:57 pm

      I think the point is that the situation in Palestine is obviously wrong, and that it would be obviously wrong even if South African apartheid had never existed and the Palestine situation were sui generis. Thus, the comparisons with South Africa are not necessary.

      For my part, I will say that the comparisons can be useful, both to give a better view of the situation, in the way Pappe has done, and to enlist the indignation aroused by South African apartheid into the service of the Palestinians.

      I also, mind you, see a potential drawback. Zionists can use the comparison as a distraction from the issue, by shifting the concentration onto the question of whether the comparison is accurate. I think we have seen that done in comments on MW.

      • MHughes976
        July 26, 2016, 8:38 am

        Yes, maybe we do sometimes find that comparisons promote clarity of judgement. But we have indeed seen much of comparison as distraction. There’s something laborious – there has to be – about constructing a list of the regulations and oppressions outrageous and petty that apply in one place at one time and that applied in another place at another and there are bound to be legitimate differences in the assessment of details. Dispute among a small minority of qualified researchers and experts, inevitably focusing on the more obscure elements, may rather overshadow the plain moral intuition that should be the basis of everything.
        I see much truth as usual in what echino says but I must say that I do see Zionism and the Zionist dispensation as not all that like anything else in this world.

      • DaBakr
        July 26, 2016, 4:25 pm

        @r

        Well obviously it is not obviously wrong to quite a lot of people worldwide. So what is it? , your definition of obvious is superior to all the others in the same world who have possibly grown up with another dictionary, obviously.

    • Misterioso
      July 26, 2016, 10:57 am

      As I see it, the multiple and escalating horrors that the native Palestinian Arabs living in the West Bank, East Jerusalem and the Gaza Strip have endured since 1967 are due to Israel’s belligerent, illegal and brutal occupation. Racism, oppression, dispossession, torture, extrajudicial killings, imprisonments without charge, collective punishments, destruction of homes and orchards, etc., inflicted against Palestinians are a direct consequence of the illegal (i.e., in gross violation of the Fourth Geneva Convention) occupation. (Syria’s Golan Heights and Lebanon’s Shebba Farms are also illegally occupied by Israel.)

      To quote eminent Haaretz journalist, Bradley Burston:

      “Occupation is Slavery”
      EXCERPT: “In the name of occupation, generation after generation of Palestinians have been treated as property. They can be moved at will, shackled at will, tortured at will, have their families separated at will. They can be denied the right to vote, to own property, to meet or speak to family and friends. They can be hounded or even shot dead by their masters, who claim their position by biblical right, and also use them to build and work on the plantations the toilers cannot themselves ever hope to own. The masters dehumanize them, call them by the names of beasts.” (Haaretz, Feb. 26/13)

      However, Israel proper, i.e., west of the green line, is an apartheid entity.

      To wit:

      Ilan Pappe: “[Israel’s] political system [is] exclusionary, a pro forma democracy – going through the motions of democratic rule but essentially being akin to apartheid or Herenvolk (‘master race’) democracy.” (“Jerusalem Report,” Feb. 14/2000)

      Ronnie Kasrils, key player in the struggle against the former South African apartheid regime, minister for intelligence in the current government and a devout Jew: “The Palestinian minority in Israel has for decades been denied basic equality in health, education, housing and land possession, solely because it is not Jewish. The fact that this minority is allowed to vote hardly redresses the rampant injustice in all other basic human rights. They are excluded from the very definition of the ‘Jewish state’, and have virtually no influence on the laws, or political, social and economic policies. Hence, their similarity to the black South Africans [under apartheid].” (The Guardian, 25 May 2005)

      “Former Foreign Ministry director-general invokes South Africa comparisons. ‘Joint Israel-West Bank’ reality is an apartheid state”
      EXCERPT: “Similarities between the ‘original apartheid’ as it was practiced in South Africa and the situation in ISRAEL [my emphasis] and the West Bank today ‘scream to the heavens,’ added [Alon] Liel, who was Israel’s ambassador in Pretoria from 1992 to 1994. There can be little doubt that the suffering of Palestinians is not less intense than that of blacks during apartheid-era South Africa, he asserted.” (Times of Israel, February 21, 2013)

      Shlomo Gazit, retired IDF Major General: “[Israel’s] legal system that enforces the law in a discriminatory way on the basis of national identity, is actually maintaining an apartheid regime.” (Haaretz, July 19, 2011)

      One example of apartheid within Israel:
      http://www.haaretz.com/hasen/spages/1134898.html
      Ha’aretz, Dec. 14/09: “Jewish town won’t let Arab build home on his own land ”
      Excerpt: “Aadel Suad first came to the planning and construction committee of the Misgav Local Council in 1997. Suad, an educator, was seeking a construction permit to build a home on a plot of land he owns in the community of Mitzpeh Kamon. The reply he got, from a senior official on the committee, was a memorable one. ‘Don’t waste your time,’ he reportedly told Suad. ‘We’ll keep you waiting for 30 years.’”

      “…EU broadside over plight of Israel’s Arabs”
      EXCERPT: “The confidential 27-page draft prepared by European diplomats… [shows] that Israeli Arabs suffer ‘economic disparities… unequal access to land and housing… discriminatory draft legislation and a political climate in which discriminatory rhetoric and practice go unsanctioned.'” (The Independent, Dec. 27/2011)

      The U.S. State Department’s report on International Religious Freedom: “Arabs in Israel…are subject to various forms of discrimination [and the government] does not provide Israeli Arabs…with the same quality of education, housing, employment opportunities as Jews.”
      In its 2015 Country Report on Human Rights Practices for Israel and the occupied Palestinian territories, the U.S. Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights and Labor acknowledges the “institutional and societal discrimination against Arab citizens of Israel.” (U.S. Department of State, Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights and Labor Country Reports on Human Rights Practices for 2015 Israel and The Occupied Territories, http://www.state.gov/j/drl/rls/hrrpt/humanrightsreport/index.htm?year=2015&dlid=252927#wrapper)

      To the best of my knowledge, Israel is the only country in the world that differentiates between citizenship and nationality, i.e., “Israeli” nationality does not exist, only Jews and non-Jews, and each citizen carries an appropriate identity card. While the implications of this absurdity for discrimination and racism against non-Jews are obvious, it has been upheld by Israel’s Supreme Court:

      “Supreme Court rejects ‘Israeli’ nationality status'”
      EXCERPTS:
      “Allowing citizens to relinquish ethnic or religious identity in the population registry would undermine Israel’s Jewishness, ruling says.

      “Israel’s population registry lists a slew of ‘nationalities’ and ethnicities, among them Jew, Arab, Druse and more. But one word is conspicuously absent from the list: Israeli.
      “Residents cannot identify themselves as Israelis in the national registry because the move could have far-reaching consequences for the country’s Jewish character, the Israeli Supreme Court wrote in documents obtained Thursday.” (Times of Israel, October 4, 2013)

      A few years ago, the Knesset passed the “Citizenship Law,” which denies Israel’s Arab citizens the right to bring a spouse from the occupied Palestinian territories or any Arab or other country to live in Israel. Jews, however, can immigrate to Israel from anywhere in the world and automatically become citizens with full rights.

      The effect of this blatantly racist law and more than fifty other restrictions (http://adalah.org/eng/Israeli-Discriminatory-Law-DatabaseIsrael's) Arab citizens have to endure is well expressed by writer and Knesset member, Ahmed Tibi, Palestinian/Arab citizen of Israel: “…dutifully defining the state [of Israel] as ‘Jewish and democratic,’ ignores the fact that in practice ‘democratic’ refers to Jews, and the Arabs are nothing more than citizens without citizenship.” (Ma’ariv, 1.6.2005)

      Nor should it be forgotten that Ethiopian Jews who are citizens of Israel are also discriminated against.

      • DaBakr
        July 26, 2016, 4:31 pm

        @m
        Well, your opinion is strong and I won’t try and change it, not that I could. But there is a Jewish man who owns a house north northwest of Jerusalem where his family owned the 4 hectare plot for as long as anybody could remember. He was not allowed to build a garage with two bedrooms above and he is not allowed by law. My my.

      • Talkback
        July 27, 2016, 10:36 am

        @ DaBakr

        Does it make a difference that this man in the case you mention is Jewish or is your comment stupid?

    • CigarGod
      August 19, 2016, 9:27 am

      Well, how deep was the influence of Israel in the support and defense of the South African regime?

  2. ET
    July 25, 2016, 8:20 pm

    False premise that its two competing national movements with equal claim to the land which would make it Civil War
    .
    1 Mandate of Palestine was superseded with UN Charter, Chapter XII, Article 80 Terms of UN Trusteeship November 29th 1947 UNGA 181

    2 There is no one-state solution: Its a Two_State UNGA 181 Resolution
    2.1 UNGA 181 is in effect
    https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=1052233094866491&set=a.513375965418876.1073741833.100002394314450&type=3&theater
    .
    3 Israel_Palestine Conflict is not a Civil War
    3.1 International Law Documents
    https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=791697980920005&set=a.513375965418876.1073741833.100002394314450&type=3&theater
    .
    4 Sionist Fraud that its Civil War pressed by Abbas is how Abbas has been corrupted:
    4.1 VC_LOT Article 47 vis-a-vis Abbas powers https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=901471446609324&set=a.513375965418876.1073741833.100002394314450&type=3&theater
    .
    5 Any Israel_Palestine Peace Agreement shall be qualified by Vienna Convention on Laws of Treaties Article 53
    5.1 VC_LOT Article 53 jsu cogens
    https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=1052233094866491&set=a.513375965418876.1073741833.100002394314450&type=3&theater

  3. DaBakr
    July 26, 2016, 4:07 pm

    Some ridiculous and purely imaginative statements from these so-called ‘highly respected’ (as in, highly respected by who?)

    1) that pappe is so highly esteemed by his supporters is a far cry from universal respect. It’s like saying David duke is a highly respected former politician and author. Uh huh.

    2) cook just pops off his premise that the main goal of South African Apartheid regime was to restrict assets of black and colored folks – not separation per se . Excuse us, wtf is he prattling on about? The most ridiculous and bogus analysis off SA apartheid put forward yet. Would love to put cooks premise to the black leaders forcibly separated let alone the millions of non-insurgents. And all to promote and entity bogus connection to Israel. Sweet.

    3.) Lol. I’d like to see the law referenced whereby water is owned by the state and to be legally used by Jews only. What garbage. And if their talking about Judea and Samaria the statec water apparatus provides more, not less then the allotted amount because literally tonnes and to tonnes of Palestinian water is wasted through bad lines, infrastructure and all out corruption. The Palestinian citizens of West bank already know this but don’t care of some crazy Jew from Israel wants to tout their cause.

    4

    • gamal
      July 26, 2016, 6:52 pm

      (“as in, highly respected by who?)”

      whom so ever

      • DaBakr
        July 27, 2016, 12:16 am

        (whomsoever )

        respected by who? as in, who respects him…

        anyway-don’t take my post too seriously (as if) tonight as my auto-correct is out of control. i have references to a well known islamaphobic/anti-sharia activist coming out as “pharmacist”. others just a bad. just wait till the inane clown prince of MW comes along and surely has a conniption fit about references to narcotics use which i mostly approve of.

    • inbound39
      July 26, 2016, 8:15 pm

      Dabakr…it is a well documented fact that Israel as the Occupying power of the West Bank has taken control of ALL Palestinian resources including water. Israel has three main water sources,two of which are in Occupied Palestinian Territory. Even though under International Law resources in Palestine are Palestinian by ownership,Israel does not allow it by control by force. Settlements are known to recieve far more water than Palestinian villages. Palestinians do not recieve building permits nor are they allowed to bore for water under the restraints of the Occupation therefore…yes…. maintenance of services is non existent. The cause of that is the Occupation. Israel clearly makes life as difficult as possible for the Palestinians so they leave and settlers then seize the land with little effort. All this has been well documented over the years…your problem appears to be an inability to read….like many pro Israeli’s.

      • DaBakr
        July 27, 2016, 12:59 am

        @i

        whoa whoa….so down cowboy. first of all i am not going to argue israeli water policy in regards to the palestinian population in the territories east of the green line. its too convoluted and so many things persons such as yourself call “well known facts” are about as factual as the last speech by don trumpf.

        however-we can stop completely short of all that by me correcting you that under international law there is no ownership of the disputed land of judea and samaria or the west bank. (whichever you prefer) and after the 22 year occupation by jordan where there was mostly destruction with christians and jews denied access to everything from water to the simple act of praying in their houses of worship.

        Since 1967 the israelis have poured billions into water management and infrastructure. I’m not going to lie and tell you water is distributed equally between the wealthier inhabitants of the developed areas -which-I will wager you did not know–contain 1000s of Palestinian-Israeli families living in nice modern houses in what you consider ‘illegal’ settlements. Oh wait. They are only illegal if they are occupied by Jews. Got it. Anyway- these israeli arabs enjoy the same access to water as their jewish neighbors.
        As for the territories-of course there is not completely equal investment in water infrastructure -especially since oslo when the PA was given access to billions with which they were supposed to develop things like….um.. their peoples water supply. Was Israel going to allow wells and aquifers to be dig in places where major water supplies to israeli towns and settlements would be threatened? No. of course not. And-when you get into the more isolated developments and arab villages the isralei water authority provides more then it is legally required to supply yet mismanagement-lack of cooperation with israeli water authority, major corruption by the well connected and the explicit and continued use by Abbas and his PA cronies of the myth of water war waged by Israel -which is a bogus propaganda ploy disproven time after time .

        Sure there are problems in distributing water to some arab villages and sectors of palestinian suburbs in hebron other cities. and there are also problems during dry times like right now to jewish areas as well.

        and then we get into the whole argument of what the palestinian leadership has NOT been doing with the billions of dollars they have been getting for years by ngo’s europe, the UN, US and Israel and why almost NOTHING has been spent by the PA on developing it peoples water infrastructure and supply. Are you honestly going to tell me that Israel-who consistently turns over billions in tax revenue as well as maintaining roads and other infrastructure is going to completely forbid Palestinian development of sound and modern water management? righto.

        Oh yeah-there are the ubiquitous plastic water tanks on roofs of the mostly well connected for use in times of greater drought. But its bullsht that the ‘occupation’ forbids well drilling. What it forbids is ILLEGAL well drilling which is improperly managed, bypasses the existing system, risks contamination and depletion of the supply for all surrounding people– bedouin jew, but mostly Palestinians . And many of these Palestinian farmers think they have every right (as legitimate resistance) to drill wherever the fk they want because-its their land and they don’t have to consider anything but that. Not their neighbor up the hill or the villagers down stream. As if you far left wingers suddenly don’t understand how important good water management policies are in this age of climate warming.

        I wish you people would attack israel on things other then your fantasy image of what doesn’t actually go on. (oh yes. I know…the jews in the settlements all have swimming pools while the poor poor palestinians have barely enough to drink. its total BS. There are 100s of pools in the palestinian areas and the settlement jews don’t all have their own pools but they have community pools. But oh what a fantastic anti-zionist propaganda image that conjures. Cripes-even Gaza has dozens of public swimming pools and miles of beaches for their peoples. At least more then one would imagine for the ‘worlds largest prison’. And are you going to tell us that the Palestinians in gas aren’t going to benefit from israeli desalinization projects? Well-if the pipes are bombed maybe not. Just like the electric lines were downed by Hamas and then the world press listen to them scream how Israel was depriving them of power. ok. have a good night. I want to cue up big bill clintons speech and see how bernie is trying to deal with the movement he started but can’t control any more.
        anyway-when there are negotiations between the parties and the conflict is terminated you can start talking about what is actually illegal versus what is considered illegal by the EU, the UN, Arab league , etc etc.

      • Talkback
        July 27, 2016, 12:29 pm

        DaBakr: “however-we can stop completely short of all that by me correcting you that under international law there is no ownership of the disputed land of judea and samaria or the west bank. […] in what you consider ‘illegal’ settlements. […]

        Being a true colonist and surpremacist, DaBakr only recognizes the right to self determination if it means that Jews should be entitled to a territory and creating a state on it. Who cares that Palestine had allready international status under mandate and thererfore belonged to its legal citizens even if it became a failed state and under occupation after 1948.

        He also has to ignore the world’s opinio juris and therefore international customary law in this matter and that the General Assembly had reaffirmed the Palestinian rights to self determation as long ago as the Security Council resolution (NO US VETO) spoke of the necessity to end the prolonged occupation of the “Palestinian” territories and Jerusalem.He also has to ignore that the State of Palestine which was redeclared in 1988 within the green line was recognized as a state in 2012 within the UN which means that the UN and all international institutions (International Court of Justice, International Criminal court and so on) will treat it as a state, even while being a state under belligerent occupation.

        There’s nothing “disputed” when it comes to this territory or the illegality of the settlements except the solely opinion of the occupier and its propagandists. But not even the UN and its highest international judicial instance the International Court of Justice can decide what is “actually illegal” if DaBakr and his fellow pathological narcissists claim it to be only “considered illegal” or “disputed”.

    • Talkback
      July 27, 2016, 10:57 am

      DaBakr: “1) that pappe is so highly esteemed by his supporters is a far cry from universal respect. It’s like saying David duke is a highly respected former politician and author. ”

      These two have far less in common than David Duke’s position and yours.

      “2) cook just pops off his premise that the main goal of South African Apartheid regime was to restrict assets of black and colored folks – not separation per se . Excuse us, wtf is he prattling on about?”

      That separation was the main method to reach the main goal in South Africa while Israel uses a different approach. [That is, if one does not include Israel’s expellees – which is wrong.]

      Too difficult to comprehend?

      “3.) Lol. I’d like to see the law referenced whereby water is owned by the state and to be legally used by Jews only.”

      Not USED by Jews only, but DISTRIBUTED by Jews only”.

      “literally tonnes and to tonnes of Palestinian water is wasted through bad lines, infrastructure and all out corruption.”

      Do Palestinian need a permit from the occupier to repair them? You know the answer. Palestinians pay a lot of money for water that Israel steals and resells to them.

  4. inbound39
    July 26, 2016, 8:18 pm

    Judging by the many comments we get here from Zionists it seems literacy amongst them and good eyesight appears to be a common affliction.

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