Packed room on Capitol Hill hears Palestinian student say he thought three IDs and a separation wall was normal for children everywhere

Middle East
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Yazan Meqbil grew up in the occupied West Bank town of Beit Ommar, in a house with ten demolition orders on it and a father in an Israeli prison. This reality hung over him for much of his youth and remains close today, even in adulthood. Over the course of his teenage years, Meqbil lost two close friends—Youssef and Mohammed.

In 2011 Youssef was shot to death by an Israeli settler while working his farmland in Beit Ommar and Mohammed was killed by an Israeli sniper in 2014, while looking out his second floor window.

“I grew up imagining that all the children in the world grew up having a similar a type of life,” Meqbil said. “[I thought] they all have teargas, bullets and checkpoints; they need to have three IDs and I don’t know how many passports to walk around; they need to see the separation wall whenever they go to another city; they have to lose friends or be detained; or grow up with a father [in jail].”

Last week, Meqbil recounted these and other painful stories at a packed Congressional briefing in D.C. held for the third consecutive year by the human rights groups American Friends Service Committee (AFSC) and Defense for Children International-Palestine (DCIP). Joining him were Omar Shakir of Human Rights Watch, Brad Parker of DCIP, and Nadia Ben-Youssef, director of Adalah Justice Project. Jennifer Bing of AFSC introduced and moderated the discussion.

The human rights groups urged lawmakers to defy the pro-Israel consensus and act on behalf of the 4.68 million occupied Palestinians; especially Palestinian children, who are subject to daily abuse and repression from all arms of the Israeli state.

No Way to Treat a Child, a joint project of (AFSC) and (DCIP), seeks to spotlight Israel’s military occupation by drawing attention to the state’s excessive and routine rights violations of Palestinian children.

Living only for lack of death

Meqbil, now a biochemistry major, told of his anxiety over final exams week at high school as any teenager might—but as a Palestinian teenager, he described the additional stress from a threat of an Israel Defense Force (IDF) night raid as he stayed up late to study. According to evidence compiled by DCIP, 56 percent of Palestinian children in the West Bank were arrested from their homes in the middle of the night in 2013.

Although he was able to leave Palestine in 2015 for school in the US, Meqbil admitted that it has been difficult to leave behind the trauma of his childhood.

“I used to carry my passport wherever I would go and every time I saw a police car I freaked out.”

“I never looked them in the eyes, I tried to avoid them, I changed streets if necessary,” Meqbil said of his interactions with US police.

Reflecting on his old life in the West Bank, Meqbil eventually realized his personal truth in the Palestinian saying “we are living because of the lack of death.”

Congressional Dilemma

This month marks the fiftieth year of Israel’s military occupation of the West Bank, East Jerusalem, Gaza and the Golan Heights, a unique attribute that featured distinctly in the statements given at Thursday’s briefing. According to the International Committee for the Red Cross, the Israeli occupation is “the world’s longest, sustained military occupation in modern history.”

As the Director of Israel and Palestine at Human Rights Watch—an organization that has documented Israel’s rights abuses for nearly three decades—Omar Shakir said that the sheer length of Israel’s occupation has essentially cemented most of its racist policies, originally meant to be temporary, into Israeli law.

“For much of this time in the Israeli-Palestinian context” Shakir said, “we found ourselves documenting the same sorts of abuses.”

The fifty-year occupation is today maintained by what Shakir called “an entrenched system of institutional discrimination against the Palestinians in the occupied territories.”

One month before the briefing, DCIP and AFSC asked supporters to urge their elected officials to attend in order “to learn what it means to be a Palestinian child living under military occupation.”

In response, constituents sent some 2,969 such emails to their Congressional representatives.

Organizers confirm that staffers, interns or otherwise representatives from thirty-six Congressional offices joined the briefing, filling the Cannon House building room to capacity.

This includes staffers from the offices of Senator Tammy Duckworth of Illinois, Representative Nita Lowey of New York’s lower Hudson Valley, California Senator Dianne Feinstein and Representative John Conyers of Michigan’s 13th District, which includes the cities of Detroit and Dearborn Heights.

Staffers and interns present at the briefing declined to speak on the record. Not a single Congressional office returned requests for comment from Mondoweiss, despite repeated attempts.

One staffer who wished to remain anonymous did tell Mondoweiss that members of Congress often feel stifled from talking about Palestine by the ubiquitous pro-Israel lobby.

A member of Betty McCollum’s office also attended the briefing. McCollum is the representative for Minnesota’s fourth Congressional district and one of the more outspoken members of Congress on the rights of Palestinian children.

For the past two years, McCollum has initiated letters to the State Department, urging action to stop Israel’s policy of detaining children without charge or access to counsel.

Nineteen Congress members signed the 2015 letter and twenty signed in 2016.

Given the pervasive influence of the pro-Israel lobby on the hill, however, these calls have gone largely ignored. In 2016 alone, pro-Israel interest groups contributed $7,487,287 to US House members and another $5,240,113 to those in the Senate. Another lobby closely aligned with Israel is the US Defense and Aerospace industry, which contributed a total of $12,359,768 to Congressional campaigns in 2016.

Even Representative McCollum, for all her advocacy on behalf of Palestinian children, received $33,500 from the defense industry in 2016, with another $40,500 from related industries including the pro-Israel lobby, all according to campaign contribution watchdog site Open Secrets.

While unmitigated election spending is an obvious obstruction to the fairness of US elections, the fact remains that companies like Lockheed Martin—which manufactures the F-35 fighter plane, used by Israel during the 2014 Gaza War that claimed roughly 2,200 Palestinian lives—donated tens of thousands of dollars to Representative McCollum the same year she publicly advocated for the rights of Palestinian children.

Occupation Is a Symptom

Last year Israeli forces and settlement security guards killed 32 minors, making it the deadliest year for Palestinian children in a decade, according to Brad Parker, Staff Attorney and International Advocacy Officer at DCIP. Parker attributed the 2016 statistic to a combination of escalating tensions, relaxed laws on Israeli use of deadly force and the near impunity under which Israeli authorities operate.

So far this year nine Palestinian children have been killed by live fire in the West Bank and East Jerusalem, suggesting this trend will continue.

“As I speak, remember that we are talking about people’s lives,” lawyer and human rights advocate Nadia Ben-Youssef began.

Israel’s legal system has a 99 percent conviction rate for Palestinians and over 90 percent of investigations into police misconduct are closed. In this context, Ben-Youssef described the absurdity of acting as legal counsel to accused Palestinians who are essentially deemed guilty before any trial takes place.

And because the Israeli legal system—as the state—was founded on Jewish supremacy, the lives of Palestinians are not valued, she added. “When your life is not valued, your life can be taken away. When the law doesn’t protect your rights and doesn’t deem you to be equal,” there can be no equality.

“The occupation is the symptom of this problem,” she continued. “There’s no right to equality in Israel—it’s not enshrined in law because [Israel] cannot protect equality and protect [Jewish] privilege.”

Ben-Youssef recalled the case of Umm al Hiran, a Bedouin village in Israel whose demolition Adalah Justice Center fought against for thirteen years. Although it was ultimately demolished by Israel this year, Adalah brought the case to the Israeli Supreme Court and for those thirteen years, prevented the demolition.

In this climate, Ben-Youssef said, human rights lawyers like herself “work within the system [in order] to expose and advocate for a transformation of the system.”

“You take a case that if you win, you win. But if you lose, you also win, because you expose the system.”

About Jesse Rubin

Jesse Rubin is a freelance journalist from New York. Twitter: @JesseJDRubin

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50 Responses

  1. JosephA
    June 14, 2017, 6:06 pm

    Terrible sadness, but these facts have to be brought to light.

  2. JWalters
    June 14, 2017, 6:22 pm

    “One staffer who wished to remain anonymous did tell Mondoweiss that members of Congress often feel stifled from talking about Palestine by the ubiquitous pro-Israel lobby.”

    One of the biggest secrets being kept from the American public is the enormous influence of Israel on America’s politics and press. That information dam is going to break, and the American public will be incensed at what Israel has done. Politicians should start preparing. It’s won’t be enough to say, “I’m shocked! shocked!” They will need to be on justice’s side of the revolution. Special thanks to Betty McCollum for her efforts on behalf of America.

    Glad Senator Feinstein had a rep at the hearing. She may suspect it was the Israeli faction in the CIA that hacked her Senate Intelligence Committee servers to keep the torture report buried.

    For Congressional staffers who haven’t seen it, “War Profiteers and the Roots of the War on Terror” online fills in some central background.

  3. John Turnbull
    June 14, 2017, 6:52 pm

    Detail: the first F-35 was delivered to Israel in October 2016, and it’s use is still training.

    The 2014 massacre used F-16s.

    Your point is obviously still true.

    • Citizen
      June 15, 2017, 6:05 am

      Yes, I noticed this factual error. Or was it delivered to Israel (first of 50) in December of 2016? Israel greets first F-35 fighter jets from US @CNN http://cnn.it/2gwGOLi

      • John Turnbull
        June 15, 2017, 11:34 am

        There are a number of ceremonial and contract milestone dates, beginning in January. They’re all pretty much irrelevant. The critical date is the transfer date of the insurance contract on the machine. I’m guessing that had to be a month or two prior to the flight.

  4. Ossinev
    June 15, 2017, 7:03 am

    The focus on 3a.m. raids and the detention of children by the most moral is IMO a combination of factors;
    1) It is a straightforward Mafia/Terrorist tactic = threaten and frighten the children and the parents will be persuaded to know their place.
    2) Threaten and frighten the children and the children will grow up to know their place.
    3) And probably the most important factor = it is so boring having to live in the midst of and “control” these smelly Untemenschen so to keep up the morale of the most moral they are given the green light to bully,harass,intimidate,torture,terrorise,injure,kill as they see fit and being Brainwashed cowardly Ziozombies they just fill their boots.

    Don`t you just love the Land of Creation and it`s wonderful pioneer youth.

    • Elizabeth Block
      June 20, 2017, 10:33 pm

      You’re absolutely right. Last year I was in Palestine, and we had a briefing by Gerard Horton, of Military Court Watch. The Israelis don’t care whether the particular child they arrest and imprison is innocent or guilty. That’s not the point. The purpose is to terrorize the family, terrorize and demoralize the community, and keep the Palestinians in their place. It works very well.

  5. Arafatbastard
    June 15, 2017, 8:08 am

    Maybe somebody should tell him that the wall is a border?

    All countries have borders.

    • eljay
      June 15, 2017, 8:18 am

      || Arafatbastard: … All countries have borders. ||

      That’s right, and Israel’s borders are the Partition borders:
      – it accepted;
      – within which it asked to be recognized as a country;
      – within which it was recognized as a country; and
      – outside of which it has been engaging in colonialism and (war) crimes for almost 70 years.

      • Arafatbastard
        June 15, 2017, 8:34 am

        The Arab League declined the Partition borders and tried to eradicate the Jews. They certainly never recognised the borders.

        They lost.

        The Green Line is only the 1949 Cease-Fire line, and was never intended to be a permanent border, as Jordan proved in June 1967, when it started a war to capture all of Israel.

        You are misinformed.

      • eljay
        June 15, 2017, 9:01 am

        || Arafatbastard: The Arab League declined the Partition borders … ||

        But Israel accepted the Partition borders, asked to be recognized as a state within them and was recognized as a state within them. Everything else has been illegal acquisition of territory through war. Zionists know this to be true but disregard it because it doesn’t suit their agenda of maximizing the size of their religion-supremacist state.

      • John O
        June 15, 2017, 9:13 am

        @Arafatbastard

        Care to give details of how Jordan started the war in 1967? Even the Israeli government have admitted they themselves started it.

        If you’re going to be a regular fixture here on Mondoweiss, you’d better polish up your mass debating skills before we all die laughing at you.

      • Arafatbastard
        June 15, 2017, 9:21 am

        Oh John O, it is a well established historical fact that Israel pleaded with Jordan not to get involved in the war, but Nasser persuaded King Hussein that he had destroyed the Israeli airforce, and that he should dip his bread.

        Hussein then attacked Israel in Jerusalem and elsewhere, and was chased off the land.

        Try reading some history, instead of listening to the voices in your head, before we all die laughing at you.

      • talknic
        June 15, 2017, 9:24 am

        @ Arafatbastard June 15, 2017, 8:34 am

        “The Arab League declined the Partition borders”

        So what? Israel accepted the borders and was recognized by them.

        May 15, 1948Letter From the Agent of the Provisional Government of Israel to the President of the United States, “MY DEAR MR. PRESIDENT: I have the honor to notify you that the state of Israel has been proclaimed as an independent republic within frontiers approved by the General Assembly of the United Nations in its Resolution of November 29, 1947, and that a provisional government has been charged to assume the rights and duties of government for preserving law and order within the boundaries of Israel, for defending the state against external aggression, and for discharging the obligations of Israel to the other nations of the world in accordance with international law. The Act of Independence will become effective at one minute after six o’clock on the evening of 14 May 1948, Washington time.”

        No further territories have ever been legally acquired by Israel since by any agreement or legal instrument. It has been inadmissible to acquire territory by war since at least 1933, certainly by 1945 and the advent of the UN

        “and tried to eradicate the Jews. “

        The neighbouring Arab states had a legal right to attempt to expel Israeli/Jewish forces from territories “outside the State of Israel” … “in Palestine” May 22nd 1948 Israeli Government statement

        On May 22, 1948 UNSC S/766 the Provisional Government of Israel answered questions addressed to the “Jewish authorities in Palestine” was transmitted by the acting representative of Israel at the United Nations.
        Question (a): Over which areas of Palestine do you actually exercise control at present over the entire area of the Jewish State as defined in the Resolution of the General Assembly of the 29th November, 1947?
        "In addition, the Provisional Government exercises control over the city of Jaffa; Northwestern Galilee, including Acre, Zib, Base, and the Jewish settlements up to the Lebanese frontier; a strip of territory alongside the road from Hilda to Jerusalem; almost all of new Jerusalem; and of the Jewish quarter within the walls of the Old City of Jerusalem. The above areas, outside the territory of the State of Israel, are under the control of the military authorities of the State of Israel, who are strictly adhering to international regulations in this regard. The Southern Negev is uninhabited desert over which no effective authority has ever existed." ... " the Government of the State of Israel operates in parts of Palestine outside the territory of the State of Israel"

        “They certainly never recognised the borders.”

        So what? Recognition is not mandatory. The majority of the International Comity of Nations DID however recognize Israel’s UNGA res 181 borders per the Israeli Government plea for recognition! The Arab states have never invaded any Israeli territories. All of Israel’s wars have been in other folks territories, never within Israel’s recognized borders.

        The Arab states in fact showed as required by law ” respect for and acknowledgement of the sovereignty, territorial integrity and political independence of every State in the area and their right to live in peace within secure and recognized boundaries free from threats or acts of force;” (See UNSC res 242 for an example) Something Israel has never done

        “They lost.”

        So what? It is inadmissible to acquire territory by any coercive measure, including and especially by war. Has been since 1933

        “The Green Line is only the 1949 Cease-Fire line, and was never intended to be a permanent border”

        Correct you fat Zionist bastard.

        “as Jordan proved in June 1967, when it started a war to capture all of Israel.”

        There’s no UNSC resolution condemning any Arab state for invading any Israeli territories because they haven’t. Israel attacked in Nov 1966. I gave you the information you fat lying Zionist bastard, why don’t you read something other than Zionist crap for a change?

        “You are misinformed”

        You’re full oif ZioPoop pal. You have nothing to back your claims.

      • echinococcus
        June 15, 2017, 9:37 am

        Eljay,

        Stop BSing us, please.

        Israel’s borders are the Partition borders:
        – it accepted;

        The owners of the country never accepted

        – within which it asked to be recognized as a country;
        – within which it was recognized as a country

        Not by the owners of the country but by hostile colonialist, imperialist powers.

        – outside of which it has been engaging in colonialism and (war) crimes for almost 70 years.

        Oh, not Inside the initial occupation zone, too? That was at least as criminal in the way of colonialism and war crimes –not to you “liberal” Zionists. The 70 years start with the initial Zionist occupation, which is not “outside of which”.

        By repeating relentlessly this despicable propaganda, you are trying to legitimize the Zionists’ crime of invasion, ethnic cleansing, theft and Apartheid in the mind of the readers. No matter if limited to the first occupation or the successive waves of aggression. Your denouncing the criminal enterprise is useless as a fig leaf when you make yourself an accessory to helping the invaders enjoy the fruits of the Nakba.

      • eljay
        June 15, 2017, 10:04 am

        || echinococcus: Eljay, blahblahblah. ||

        Sure, whatever you say.

      • talknic
        June 15, 2017, 10:55 am

        @ echinococcus June 15, 2017, 9:37 am

        “you are trying to legitimize the Zionists’ crime of invasion, ethnic cleansing, theft and Apartheid in the mind of the readers”

        Oh cut the bullsh*t. The majority here are on the side of the Palestinians. We each have differing view points, none of which are trying to legitimize the Zionists’ crime of invasion, ethnic cleansing, theft or apartheid

      • John O
        June 15, 2017, 11:48 am

        @Arafafatbastard

        You have, of course, failed to respond to the point I made, which was that Israel initiated hostilities.

      • echinococcus
        June 15, 2017, 12:35 pm

        Sorry, Talknic.

        Sure, the majority here are on the side of the Palestinians, but slice it any which way, legitimizing the imposed partition does support the Zionist claim on Palestine and justifies “the Zionists’ crime of invasion, ethnic cleansing, theft or apartheid”, as you so well say –limitedly to the first invasion at least, to the day it declared itself a state in violation of all law.

      • Mooser
        June 15, 2017, 4:03 pm

        “Oh cut the bullsh*t. The majority here are on the side of the Palestinians. We each have differing view points, none of which are trying to legitimize the Zionists’ crime of invasion, ethnic cleansing, theft or apartheid”

        Thanks.

      • talknic
        June 15, 2017, 5:13 pm

        @ echinococcus June 15, 2017, 12:35 pm

        “legitimizing the imposed partition does support the Zionist claim on Palestine and justifies “the Zionists’ crime of invasion, ethnic cleansing, theft or apartheid””

        Whether you like it or not, the International Comity of Nations recognition of Israel and subsequent admittance of that state into the UN has resulted in the situation where Israel exists and is in breach of its legal obligations to International Law and the UN Charter.

        By your criteria, who is answerable? Fact is they’re all dead. There’s no recall against dead people. No compensation. Nada. Nothing.

        Against an existing state (in this instance the State of Israel) there are valid legal arguments and the possibility of compensations going back to 1948 if not prior to and inclusive of the injustices of UNGA res 181

      • Talkback
        June 15, 2017, 6:29 pm

        Eljay: “That’s right, and Israel’s borders are the Partition borders:”

        Nope. It’s borders are going to be the result of negotiations. That’s what Israel told the UN to become a UN member. And the UN accepted it and Israel as a new member of the UN.

      • amigo
        June 15, 2017, 6:37 pm

        “If you’re going to be a regular fixture here on Mondoweiss, you’d better polish up your mass debating skills before we all die laughing at you.” John O

        You realise , you just signed all of our death warrants John O.

      • Mooser
        June 15, 2017, 6:38 pm

        I would have thought that “eachin” every one of us would be able to understand by now (thanks to your very patient explanations, “talknic”) that taking away the ‘legitimacy’ of the Partition lines justifies Israel’s expansionism it doesn’t invalidate it!

        And what makes it so funny and sort of pathetic, is that nobody will fight harder or argue more vociferously that those partition lines are invalid (pace “Emet”: “The Green Line is only the 1949 Cease-Fire line, and was never intended to be a permanent border”) than today’s Zionists! They believe it will be the end of Israel to return to those lines, (right, “Emet”?)

        Believe “Emet”- the original partition is Zionism’s ‘tar baby’ not Zionism’s ‘briar patch’.

      • echinococcus
        June 15, 2017, 7:04 pm

        Talknic,

        Now you’re in a discussing mood, I’d like you to answer two questions I never got a response to.

        1. Who ever said not to hold the Zionist entity to its obligations even under its illicit person? Supposing that you can force it to comply, in the sense of either a 2-state formula or integrating the enslaved population into the existing entity with a better status, who or what is preventing you? Who or what is saying that acceding to a forced compromise means you have to give up your claim to full justice?

        2. All Zionist squatters in Palestine are there without the express authorization of the owners. They are all answerable, no need to find a living Adam-and-Eve. If the invaders want to avoid complications, they can get out today. What has that got to do with your imagined need of a state actor with live first-person executives? What is keeping you, provided you have the necessary power (and an inclination to courtrooms, lawyers’ robes, wigs and such), from exacting full reparation from the current colonial criminals?

      • echinococcus
        June 15, 2017, 9:35 pm

        Mooser,

        So I see Uncle Remus is working for making the Zionist foothold in Palestine a durable and all-round recognized, respected fixture.

        Are you guys for real? Who or what is holding the (US)Zionist entity to any armistice lines anyway? Are you also so far gone that you believe in any peaceful arrangements with the Zionists short of the whole pie, so that perhaps giving them ’48 would make them pliable?
        Anyway, patient attempts at holding the Z at the armistice line are good and beautiful… but passé: 1/2 million of the herd are already there.

        Zionists still have no right to be on either side of any armistice lines anyway. Those stories are all proposals for compromises under duress (while Zionists have already proved that no compromises are to be considered.) Justice requires a valid Palestinian plebiscite and restitution of all Palestinde to its owners. No baby talk or children’s good-night stories, please.

      • talknic
        June 15, 2017, 11:51 pm

        @ Talkback June 15, 2017, 6:29 pm

        ” It’s borders are going to be the result of negotiations. That’s what Israel told the UN to become a UN member”

        Provide the Israeli statement.

      • talknic
        June 15, 2017, 11:57 pm

        @ echinococcus June 15, 2017, 7:04 pm

        “1. Who ever said not to hold the Zionist entity to its obligations even under its illicit person? Supposing that you can force it to comply, in the sense of either a 2-state formula or integrating the enslaved population into the existing entity with a better status, who or what is preventing you? Who or what is saying that acceding to a forced compromise means you have to give up your claim to full justice?”

        Who is the Zionist entity that it can be forced to comply? Fact is it’s not a state or a UN Member or prosecutable entity in respect to Palestine. Whereas Israel is a State, can be prosecuted, dragged before the UN/ICJ and its leaders before the ICC.

        “2. All Zionist squatters in Palestine are there without the express authorization of the owners. They are all answerable, no need to find a living Adam-and-Eve. If the invaders want to avoid complications, they can get out today. What has that got to do with your imagined need of a state actor with live first-person executives? What is keeping you, provided you have the necessary power (and an inclination to courtrooms, lawyers’ robes, wigs and such), from exacting full reparation from the current colonial criminals?”

        They are in their millions. Are you gonna sue ’em individually?

      • talknic
        June 16, 2017, 12:44 am

        @ echinococcus June 15, 2017, 7:04 pm

        “1. Who ever said not to hold the Zionist entity to its obligations even under its illicit person?”

        What is the Zionist entity that it can be held to anything? Meanwhile, Israel is an entity, it can be (US willing) held to account

        “Supposing that you can force it to comply, in the sense of either a 2-state formula or integrating the enslaved population into the existing entity with a better status, who or what is preventing you?”

        A) Already you’re talking about a “state”. B) Me? I’m not in a position to tell the Palestinians what they can or cannot agree to.

        “Who or what is saying that acceding to a forced compromise means you have to give up your claim to full justice?”

        I have answered this question many times. Even if Israel were to agree to accept what has been offered thru the Palestinian Declaration of statehood, thereby foregoing Palestinian right of persistent objection, the illegality of the partition plan and the illegitimacy of the State of Israel could still be pursued and vast compensations sought

      • echinococcus
        June 16, 2017, 12:22 pm

        Talknic,

        Hard to know if you are asking in good faith or pretending not to understand.

        1. The Zionist entity is of course, since 1948, a self-declared state under the name of “Israel”. Heir of all actions of the precedent shape (=invaders and terrorist bands) of the Zionist entity.

        2. When you say “They [the Zionist invaders in Palestine] are in their millions. Are you gonna sue ’em individually?” you reveal an exclusively gown-and-wig approach to resistance. Who is talking of suing, except as an insignificant sideshow? Didn’t you get the news that this is a war? Would you imagine relying exclusively on some Nazi-occupied courts during WWII, to ask for a judgment expelling the Germans from the occupied lands?

        No, the idea is not to sue them but expel them if that is the general wish of the Palestinians, as indicated by very many signs, whenever the balance of forces allows it. If a proper, valid plebiscite can be conducted, so much the better. Continuing to defend the absurd idea of a legitimate Zionist presence in Palestine can only work against this.

      • Mooser
        June 16, 2017, 1:20 pm

        . “If a proper, valid plebiscite can be conducted, so much the better.

        pleb·i·scite /ˈplebəˌsīt/

        noun

        “the direct vote of all the members of an electorate on an important public question such as a change in the constitution.”

        So how can we define “all” in this case?

      • Mooser
        June 16, 2017, 4:00 pm

        “Didn’t you get the news that this is a war?”

        Yeah, and l can’t wait til somebody hands you a white feather.

      • echinococcus
        June 16, 2017, 8:19 pm

        Good definition, Mooser. I am the least qualified to define it, but the eligible population sure as hall shouldn’t include any of the Zionist invaders after their declaration of intent to colonize and take over the state. 1897? 1917? It sure as hell includes all descendants of Palestinian diaspora, too, since at least 1947. So, complicated. Very.

        Realistic? Feasible? No idea (even crazier things have very occasionally happened) but at any rate an impossibility to do it cannot be used as a get-away-with-murder pass by the invaders. They should have thought of that at the start.

      • talknic
        June 17, 2017, 3:58 am

        @ echinococcus June 16, 2017, 12:22 pm

        “Hard to know if you are asking in good faith or pretending not to understand.”

        Uh? I am here in good faith and intention, asking no more or less than equal moral, ethical and legal rights for all concerned

        “1. The Zionist entity is of course, since 1948, a self-declared state under the name of “Israel”. Heir of all actions of the precedent shape (=invaders and terrorist bands) of the Zionist entity.”

        So now you’re talking about a state, which happens to be Israel. WTF have I bothered answering to your inquisition if you’re now talking about the same state I’ve been pointing to?

        “2. When you say “They [the Zionist invaders in Palestine] are in their millions. Are you gonna sue ’em individually?” you reveal an exclusively gown-and-wig approach to resistance. Who is talking of suing, except as an insignificant sideshow? “

        Both. Expulsion if that’s what the Palestinians want AND compensation. 69 years of illegally exploiting Palestinian resources, compensation for dispossession et al is not insignificant. In fact it is so significant, Israel cannot nor has it ever been able to afford it.

        “Didn’t you get the news that this is a war? “

        Oh do tell. As have pointed out, starting circa 1897.

        “Would you imagine relying exclusively on some Nazi-occupied courts during WWII, to ask for a judgment expelling the Germans from the occupied lands?”

        No. Why are you suggesting such a preposterous notion? The ICC, ICJ, UN, UNSC are the instruments of law for the majority.

        “the idea is not to sue them but expel them if that is the general wish of the Palestinians, as indicated by very many signs, whenever the balance of forces allows it. “

        Uh huh. ‘if that is the general wish of the Palestinians’. They might offer Palestinian citizenship to some folk and they might decide to sue

        ” If a proper, valid plebiscite can be conducted, so much the better. Continuing to defend the absurd idea of a legitimate Zionist presence in Palestine can only work against this.”

        Let’s get this straight once and for all. I’m not defending Israel’s existence. I’m pointing out, as you have here, that Israel exists and as such can be held responsible

      • Mooser
        June 17, 2017, 11:56 am

        “I am the least qualified to define it”

        No wonder you suggested it. Why don’t you Google “plebiscite”…?

        ” but the eligible population sure as hall shouldn’t include”

        …and see the way “all” has been defined for the purposes of plebiscites.

        And for gawds sake, “echin” listen to “Arafatbastard”:

        “The Green Line is only the 1949 Cease-Fire line, and was never intended to be a permanent border,”

        Isn’t that pretty much the same position you hold, “echin”?

      • Talkback
        June 17, 2017, 12:51 pm

        Talkinc: “Provide the satement”:

        Here it is:

        “Mr. Eban then stated the views of his Government on the boundary question, remarking that they did not seem to constitute a major obstacle on the road to a settlement. The fact that an Arab State had not arisen in the part of Palestine envisaged by the resolution of 29 November 1947, as well as the circumstances of war and military occupation, rendered essential a process of peaceful adjustment of the territorial provisions laid down in that resolution. The General Assembly itself had twice endorsed the need of such a peaceful adjustment and its representatives had even from time to time made proposals for effecting changes in the territorial dispositions of that resolution. The view expounded by the Israeli Government during the first part of the third session 11/ was that the adjustment should be made not by arbitrary changes imposed from outside, but through agreements freely negotiated by the Governments concerned. That principle had commended itself to the overwhelming majority of the General Assembly which had declined to endorse any specific territorial changes and had dealt with the problem in paragraph 5 of resolution 194 (III) which called upon Governments and authorities concerned to extend the scope of the negotiations provided for in the Security Council resolution of 16 November 1948 and to seek agreement by negotiations conducted either with the Conciliation Commission or directly with a view to a final settlement of all questions outstanding between them.

        Israel interpreted that resolution as a directive to the Governments concerned to settle their territorial and other differences and claims by a process of negotiation. It was understood that the Conciliation Commission shared that interpretation and had indicated its willingness to commence boundary discussions at an early stage of the meetings in Lausanne. In that connexion Israel drew encouragement from the success of the armistice negotiations which had led to the establishment of agreed demarcation lines between the military forces of the Governments concerned. Those agreements had been reached through free discussion and reciprocal concession. The United Nations mediating agencies had attempted to lay down no fixed principles but to leave the parties to a process of unfettered negotiation, having in mind the general interest of peace and stability rather than the absolute assertion of unilateral claims. It was to be presumed that the same process would be followed by the parties in the forthcoming boundary discussion.

        Mr. Eban thought that the General Assembly would rejoice in any territorial dispositions which rested upon the agreement and consent of the parties concerned. Membership in the United Nations and the consequent protection of the Charter would enable the Government of Israel to see its prospects of territorial security in a more hopeful light and would thus contribute to the rapid conclusion of agreements. The Commission’s view that a settlement of the question of boundaries was essential for a permanent solution of the refugee question reinforced the need for the urgent institution of peace discussions.
        https://unispal.un.org/DPA/DPR/unispal.nsf/85255a0a0010ae82852555340060479d/1db943e43c280a26052565fa004d8174?OpenDocument#Mr.%20EBAN%20(Israel)%20understood%20tha

      • echinococcus
        June 17, 2017, 8:30 pm

        Mooser,

        I have repeatedly described it as descendants of all Palestinians established in Palestine as of 1897, including all the Palestinians diaspora since then, and definitely excluding all invading Zionists since 1897, date of the 1st Zionist congress; others may propose the Balfour declaration as a starting point given that the main culprit in the hostile invasion and takeover is the British Empire.

        As for A.Bastard and me both seeing the ceasefire line as not a permanent border, of course it is not a permanent border, was not anything but an illegal occupation border. That’s just a fact, and the Zionist side, being illegitimate, has to be kicked out.

        Does A.Bastard agree that Zionists have nowhere in Palestine where they have the right to settle –not a single square inch?

      • Elizabeth Block
        June 20, 2017, 10:34 pm

        Israel has no borders. It has never defined its borders, for good reason – it wants to keep expanding.
        And btw: I don’t know who eljay and arafatbastard are, but I write under my own name.

    • John O
      June 15, 2017, 8:27 am

      All countries except Israel, which has never defined its own borders.

      • talknic
        June 15, 2017, 9:27 am

        @ John O June 15, 2017, 8:27 am

        “All countries except Israel, which has never defined its own borders”

        Oh yes it did in its plea for recognition May 15, 1948

        Letter From the Agent of the Provisional Government of Israel to the President of the United States, “MY DEAR MR. PRESIDENT: I have the honor to notify you that the state of Israel has been proclaimed as an independent republic within frontiers approved by the General Assembly of the United Nations in its Resolution of November 29, 1947, and that a provisional government has been charged to assume the rights and duties of government for preserving law and order within the boundaries of Israel, for defending the state against external aggression, and for discharging the obligations of Israel to the other nations of the world in accordance with international law. The Act of Independence will become effective at one minute after six o’clock on the evening of 14 May 1948, Washington time.”

      • Talkback
        June 15, 2017, 6:35 pm

        John O: “All countries except Israel, which has never defined its own borders.”

        It has. Starting with its declaration within partition borders it then declared in August 1948 that the occupied territories beyond where part of Israel, too. After 67 it declared Jerusalem and the Golan Heights to belong to Israel, too. Basically from Israel’s point of view it exists where its domestic aws are applied.

    • JosephA
      June 15, 2017, 8:49 am

      Obfuscation and non-sequitors are often indications that one is attempting to change the subject from the point (of he article, in this case: Israeli zionist racism, apartheid, and settler-colonialist war crimes).

    • Misterioso
      June 15, 2017, 10:42 am

      Arafatbastard

      Sigh. More nonsense. But keep it up. With advocates like you, Israel needs no critics or enemies.

      Oh, BTW:

      In its 2004 ruling, the International Court of Justice unanimously ruled that “No territorial acquisition resulting from the threat or use of force shall be recognized as legal.” The World Court denoted this principle a “corollary” of the U.N. Charter and as such “customary international law” and a “customary rule” binding on all member States of the United Nations.

      UN Security Council Resolution 2334, December 23, 2016: “Guided by the purposes and principles of the Charter of the United Nations, and reaffirming, inter alia, the inadmissibility of the acquisition of territory by force,

      “Reaffirming the obligation of Israel, the occupying Power, to abide scrupulously by its legal obligations and responsibilities under the Fourth Geneva Convention relative to the Protection of Civilian Persons in Time of War, of 12 August 1949, and recalling the advisory opinion rendered on 9 July 2004 by the International Court of Justice,

      “Condemning all measures aimed at altering the demographic composition, character and status of the Palestinian Territory occupied since 1967, including East Jerusalem, including, inter alia, the construction and expansion of settlements, transfer of Israeli settlers, confiscation of land, demolition of homes and displacement of Palestinian civilians, in violation of international humanitarian law and relevant resolutions,….”

      “1. Reaffirms that the establishment by Israel of settlements in the Palestinian territory occupied since 1967, including East Jerusalem, has no legal validity and constitutes a flagrant violation under international law and a major obstacle to the achievement of the two-State solution and a just, lasting and comprehensive peace;

      “2. Reiterates its demand that Israel immediately and completely cease all settlement activities in the occupied Palestinian territory, including East Jerusalem, and that it fully respect all of its legal obligations in this regard;

      “3. Underlines that it will not recognize any changes to the 4 June 1967 lines, including with regard to Jerusalem, other than those agreed by the parties through negotiations;…”

      I can assure you that there is no special provision in international law that enables Israel to violate it with impunity.

  6. Jane Porter
    June 15, 2017, 8:59 am

    Israel would be not existing today, if not supported heavily, financially politically, arming it ,even with nuclear power, from the beginning until now, erasing in the western media all their crimes.

  7. Jane Porter
    June 15, 2017, 9:12 am

    so all these pro-palestinian actions like this one at congres are as we say in french:

    Bandaging a wooden-leg

    Pleading for the colonised to be treated . . .more humanly.

    but give them back their own land Oh no! None of these Human rights agencies are thinking of it

    • John O
      June 15, 2017, 11:51 am

      “Bandaging a wooden leg”. Love it. Do you have the original French version, Jane? I could use it in lots of online discussions :-)

  8. TRG-42
    June 16, 2017, 7:22 am

    Israel does not have borders, reason being it wants to keep on expanding, stealing land to become Eretz Israel, as defined in the Yinon plan.

  9. jackal
    June 19, 2017, 3:07 am

    The same silly, inane arguments over and over again.
    You read like a bunch of school girls or boys out on a playground.
    This is no debate.
    There never has been a debate about what is right or wrong.
    Israelis know, or should know, what they have to do to make all their problems go away.
    Give the land back to the people that were there to begin with, who you stole if from.
    You are no better than the white man in North America, in Africa, in Australia or anywhere else in the world, where the indigenous peoples were killed and their land taken away from them.
    You, Israelis, are destroying yourself and your hope of ever being taken seriously as a democracy. You don’t know the meaning of the word.

    • LHunter
      June 19, 2017, 11:56 pm

      “You are no better than the white man …”

      Even worse than the white man (I’m assuming you mean Christian Europeans) who has at least found a way to provide equal rights to the indigenous peoples of North America and Australia (at least on paper).

      The Zionist Israelis would never consider that.

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