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Netanyahu continues moving the goalposts – announces new settlement bloc Israel must keep in deal with Palestinians

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(Image: Mondoweiss. Inspiration: The Dersh)
(Image: Mondoweiss. Inspiration: The Dersh)

Netanyahu adds another settlement bloc to the list of parts of Palestine that Israel plans to keep. And then there’s the Jordan Valley and so on.

Haaretz reports:

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has demanded that Israel retain a fourth settlement bloc in addition to three it has already demanded in negotiations with U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry, who has been working to hammer out a framework peace agreement between Israel and the Palestinians.

The settlement bloc in question is in the vicinity of Beit El, adjacent to Ramallah in the central West Bank. Israel has already laid claim to three other settlement blocs – Ariel, Gush Etzion and Ma’aleh Adumim. Settlement blocs refer to areas in the West Bank where the majority of Jewish communities are located.

Palestinians fiercely oppose the latest Israeli request, according to an Israeli source who has been briefed by the Americans.

Netanyahu wants to annex the four blocs but, according to the Israeli source, at this stage opposes compensating the Palestinians with a land swap of equal size and quality. The prime minister did, however, raise the possibility of buying some of the land on which the settlement blocs rest from the Palestinians and compensating them for other parts with land that is in Israel proper.

The notion that Israel can determine unilaterally which “settlement blocs” it will keep in any agreement with the Palestinians is yet another invented Israeli fact on the ground.

Any land that is now part of Palestine (in the occupied Palestinian territory, i.e., beyond the 1967 green line) is subject to discussion with the Palestinians in negotiations and potentially could be part of “mutually agreed-upon” land swaps.

Nowhere has Israel been given the right to determine unilaterally what it will “keep.” Indeed, even George Bush’s (in)famous letter acknowledging that there will be territorial changes based on realities on the ground also states that any such changes/swaps will be subject to negotiations with the Palestinians.

Sometimes, it looks as if Israel, with its endless colonial provocations, is begging to be hit with boycott, divestment, and sanctions. And it deserves to get them.

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“The notion that Israel can determine unilaterally which “settlement blocs” it will keep in any agreement with the Palestinians is yet another invented Israeli fact on the ground.” Well, “fact on the ground” is one of those wonderful-awful analogies that have been over-stretched quite a bit. Israel’s ability to push the USA around is apparently a fact (or quasi-fact) but diplomacy is not what we (or I) think of as “on the ground”. Anyway, point… Read more »

If you remove the word “CHUTZPAH” from the top of the poster, I think there’s enough room there to fit the words “ZIO-SUPREMACIST ASSHOLE”.

From what I have read Netanyahu’s justification for annexing Beit El and its environs is that it is a “Jewish heritage site.” Beit El is according to Jewish biblical legend the place where Jacob dreamed about the ladder to heaven. There is a rumor that Kerry bought into this, but it is only a rumor. What bullshit!! One thing about the ploy of “Jewish heritage sites” is that it is also being used as a… Read more »

“Jewish heritage site”? Um… What about the many, many Muslim (and Palestinian, and Christian) heritage sites inside the ’48 borders of Israel?

Oh, right. Only the Jewish religious claim to the land actually matters, for some reason which has still never been made clear to me. Christians, Muslims, Baha’i, Samaritans, and others also have religious and historical ties to the Holy Land. Why do only the Jewish ones matter?

For some reason, that photo of Netanyahu reminds me of Mike Myers playing Dr. Evil.
Go figure!