Rashid Khalidi

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The U.S. Should Think Twice About Israel’s Plans for Gaza

Israel has ordered more than a million people to leave northern Gaza, presumably to prepare for an imminent ground offensive. Its military strategists appear to be planning the depopulation and reoccupation of at least part of an area home to around 2.3 million people — nearly half of them children — and most of them descended from people driven from their homes before and during the 1948 Arab-Israeli war. We must understand that these are human beings at grave risk, not just numbers.

Consider what some in the Israeli defense establishment have said.

“The State of Israel has no choice but to turn Gaza into a place that is temporarily or permanently impossible to live in”, a reservist major general, Giora Eiland, wrote in Yedioth Ahronoth, an Israeli newspaper.…  Seguir leyendo »

The lot in Jerusalem that is a candidate for a new U.S. Embassy. Ofir Berman for The New York Times

The Biden administration is doubling down on its predecessor’s reckless decision to recognize Israel’s claims to Jerusalem as its capital, a break with nearly 70 years of policy. The State Department is advancing plans to erect an embassy building in Jerusalem partly on land stolen by Israel shortly after its establishment from Palestinian refugees, including American citizens.

In 2017, the Trump administration recognized Jerusalem as Israel’s capital and moved its embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem in 2018. Since then, the embassy has been housed in the neighborhood of Arnona, in what had been the consulate building. In November, the Jerusalem District Planning and Building Committee published detailed blueprints provided by U.S.…  Seguir leyendo »

El padre de Rahaf al-Dayer sostiene el cuerpo cubierto del menor de 12 años, en el Hospital Shifa, después de que muriera por causa de un ataque aéreo israelí, en la ciudad de Gaza, el 17 de mayo de 2021. (AP Photo/Khalil Hamra)

No es una coincidencia que el episodio más reciente de la guerra de más de 100 años contra Palestina haya emergido sobre los problemas de Jerusalén y los refugiados. Ambos están ligados con el historial de esfuerzos de Israel por despojar y desplazar al pueblo palestino. En las últimas semanas, las brutales acciones de Israel en la mezquita de Al-Aqsa de Jerusalén y sus alrededores, y sus intentos por desplazar por la fuerza a los palestinos en el vecindario aledaño de Sheij Jarrah fueron detonantes de otra confrontación violenta y asimétrica (evidenciada por una disparidad mayor de 10 a uno en el número de víctimas).…  Seguir leyendo »

Israeli security forces detain a Palestinian man outside the Damascus Gate in Jerusalem's Old City on Thursday. (Ahmad Gharabli/AFP/Getty Images)

It is no coincidence that the latest episode in the hundred-plus year war on Palestine should erupt over the issues of Jerusalem and refugees. Both are entwined with the history of Israel’s efforts to dispossess and displace the Palestinian people. In recent weeks, Israel’s brutal actions in and around Jerusalem’s al-Aqsa Mosque, and its attempts to forcibly displace Palestinians in the nearby neighborhood of Sheikh Jarrah, were triggers for another violent, asymmetrical confrontation (illustrated by the greater than 10-to-1 disparity in casualty figures). Both issues go to the core of this one-sided struggle against dispossession, and both have long been diligently swept under the rug by U.S.…  Seguir leyendo »

Palestinians in Rafah protest on 6 December against US plans to move its embassy in Israel to Jerusalem. Photograph: Ibraheem Abu Mustafa/Reuters

Every time it seems Donald Trump cannot outdo himself, he does it again. Now he has announced that his administration will recognise Jerusalem as Israel’s capital, reversing nearly seven decades of American policy. This step will have multiple negative ramifications, many impossible to predict.

Jerusalem is the most important of the so-called final status issues that have been repeatedly deferred during the Israel-Palestine negotiations because of their extreme sensitivity. Trump has ploughed into this imbroglio like a bull in a china shop, zeroing in on the most complex and emotional issue of all those connected to Palestine.

Jerusalem is undoubtedly the most important aspect of the entire Palestine question.…  Seguir leyendo »

As 2017 dawns, the ghost of Lord Balfour still haunts us. Just as the British foreign secretary’s 1917 declaration considered only how the Zionist movement could serve the interests of the greatest power of its day, so has the recent speech of the US secretary of state, John Kerry, advocating a two-state solution addressed mainly the interests of today’s superpower and its protégé, Israel. There has been some progress since 1917: there is no mention whatsoever of Palestinians or Arabs in the Balfour Declaration, whereas Kerry paid ample lip service to the Palestinians, albeit always in relation to Israel’s concerns and desires.…  Seguir leyendo »

In a speech this week laying out the Obama administration’s parameters for a final peace agreement between Israel and Palestine, Secretary of State John Kerry stated what has been obvious to most observers for many years: that Israel’s construction of Jewish settlements on occupied Palestinian land has all but destroyed the two-state solution. Unfortunately, Mr. Kerry’s speech offers far too little, and comes much too late.

In 2013, shortly after he became secretary of state, Mr. Kerry warned that there was only a two-year window left for creating a Palestinian state. Now, almost four years later and in the last days of his tenure, he has finally laid out parameters for a two-state solution.…  Seguir leyendo »

What should Barack Obama, who is to visit Israel next Wednesday for the first time in his presidency, do about the Israeli-Palestinian conflict?

First, he must abandon the stale conventional wisdom offered by the New York-Washington foreign-policy establishment, which clings to the crumbling remnants of a so-called peace process that, in the 34 years since the Camp David accords, has actually helped make peace less attainable than ever.

When the most recent iteration of this process began with high hopes at the Madrid peace conference in 1991, which led to the Oslo accords two years later, there were 200,000 Israelis illegally settled in the occupied Palestinian territories: today, there are more than twice as many.…  Seguir leyendo »

Nearly everything you’ve been led to believe about Gaza is wrong. Below are a few essential points that seem to be missing from the conversation, much of which has taken place in the press, about Israel’s attack on the Gaza Strip.

THE GAZANS Most of the people living in Gaza are not there by choice. The majority of the 1.5 million people crammed into the roughly 140 square miles of the Gaza Strip belong to families that came from towns and villages outside Gaza like Ashkelon and Beersheba. They were driven to Gaza by the Israeli Army in 1948.

THE OCCUPATION The Gazans have lived under Israeli occupation since the Six-Day War in 1967.…  Seguir leyendo »