Conflicto palestino-israelí

El primer ministro israelí Benjamín Netanyahu declaró que Israel está lista para avanzar con un proceso de «paz a cambio de paz» en vez de «tierras a cambio de paz» (la intención original del proceso de paz en Oriente Medio). Incluso cuando el gobierno del presidente estadounidense Donald Trump le ofreció a Israel anexar más de un tercio de la ocupada Cisjordania en su plan de paz, garantizando el control perpetuo de los israelíes sobre los palestinos y sus tierras, la coalición del gobierno no logró aceptar la oferta ni llegar a un consenso sobre el plan.

Da igual, a principios de este mes se llevó a cabo un debate en el Knesset (parlamento) israelí para aprobar el acuerdo que normaliza las relaciones diplomáticas con los Emiratos Árabes Unidos al mismo tiempo que Israel aprobaba casi unidades de 5000 asentamientos ilegales en menos de 48 horas.…  Seguir leyendo »

Las imágenes fueron conmovedoras. A comienzos de octubre, el ministro de Relaciones Exteriores alemán, Heiko Maas, visitó el Monumento al Holocausto en Berlín con sus pares israelí y emiratí. ¿Qué mejor manera de celebrar la reciente normalización de las relaciones entre Israel y los Emiratos Árabes Unidos? En efecto, el establecimiento de vínculos diplomáticos según los Acuerdos de Abraham de este verano poco tuvo que ver con honrar el pasado. En todo caso, el acuerdo es un intento por escapar directamente de la historia.

Durante gran parte de mi vida, el conflicto palestino-israelí fue la cuestión definitoria en Oriente Medio. Desde la perspectiva occidental, garantizar el derecho de Israel a existir fue una manera de saldar una deuda histórica con el pueblo judío: Israel, como patria de la judería global, fue una garantía contra un futuro antisemitismo.…  Seguir leyendo »

On Sept. 15, the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain and Israel formally signed the “Abraham Accords,” establishing normal diplomatic relations. Supporters like President Trump and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu presented the agreement as an unprecedented step toward peace.

Not everyone agrees. A number of prominent public figures and civil society groups argue the move is aimed at pressuring Palestinians to accept a state without sovereignty, while granting authoritarian Arab Persian Gulf nations international legitimacy and greater access to new technologies for repression.

What do ordinary Arabs think? The 2019-2020 polling data of the Arab Opinion Index suggests that many Arabs are at odds with their governments on the question of Israel.…  Seguir leyendo »

A view of Jerusalem: the Israel/UAE agreement ‘threatens the status of Jerusalem’s holy sites’. Photograph: Anadolu Agency/Getty Images

Tomorrow, the Israeli parliament will be voting on the agreement to normalise relations with the United Arab Emirates. A large majority will approve a hugely favourable step towards the Israeli government’s goals: perpetuating its systematic violations of international law and of the Palestinian people’s inalienable rights. Those parliamentarians who believe in justice and equality are going to vote against this agreement. I’m afraid, though, that we are a tiny minority.

This week, we were given copies of the agreement, which I read in the three languages (Arabic, Hebrew and English) and figured out a few things. First of all, those who wrote it in different languages tailored it to their audiences.…  Seguir leyendo »

The agreements between the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and Bahrain on the one hand and Israel on the other, brokered by the Trump administration and signed at the White House on Sept. 15, attempted to normalize the abnormal in spite of their misleading declarations about realizing peace.

In fact, they succeeded in normalizing occupation, oppression, annexation, and grave violations of international law, including international humanitarian law.

We must call things by their real name. The UAE and Bahrain agreed to open regular diplomatic ties with Israel, but these were not «peace treaties.» They ended no wars, as the three countries have been engaging in secret security, intelligence, and economic deals for years.…  Seguir leyendo »

This could be the beginning of the end of the Arab-Israeli conflict. For more than 70 years, alongside oil and Islamic extremism, that dispute defined the Middle East. Innumerable books were written about the subject, and courses on it were offered at most major universities. Iran and Iraq could fight for eight bloody years, the Lebanese could massacre one another for 15, and wars would rage along the borders of Morocco, Libya and Egypt, but the term «Middle East conflict» almost invariably referred to that between Israel and the 22 Arab states.

Similarly, «Middle East peace,» did not mean reconciling such regional rivals as Syria and Turkey or Saudi Arabia and Qatar but mediating between Arabs and Israelis.…  Seguir leyendo »

Palestinians and Israeli soldiers during protests against an agreement between Israel and the UAE in the West Bank city of Hebron, September 2020. Photograph: Abed Al Hashlamoun/EPA

More than a quarter of a century after Yitzhak Rabin and Yasser Arafat shook hands on the White House lawn, Israel has managed to turn its occupation of Palestinian territory from a burden into an asset. What was for so long a liability – the flagrant violation of international law – has now become a valued commodity. Understanding this development is key to explaining why the Israelis are making peace with two distant Gulf states but not their closest neighbours, the Palestinians – without whom there can be no real peace.

Israel has learned in recent years how to manage the occupation in perpetuity with minimal cost.…  Seguir leyendo »

Es normal que los países con profundos desacuerdos de todos modos mantengan relaciones diplomáticas, mercantiles y comerciales. Sin embargo, también hay circunstancias en las que se considera que esas relaciones carecen de sentido. Por cierto, ése es el caso de la mayoría de los países frente a Corea del Norte, pero también describe la postura previa de Estados Unidos con Cuba, y ahora con Venezuela, así como la política de Israel con Irán, la de Arabia Saudita con Qatar y la de gran parte del mundo árabe con Israel.

Dada la importancia del diálogo entre los países, siempre se plantea el interrogante de cuándo perseguir o terminar relaciones normales con un actor “malo”.…  Seguir leyendo »

The flags, from left to right, of Bahrain, Israel, the United Arab Emirates and the United States fly along a road in the resort city of Netanya, in central Israel, on Sept. 13. (Jack Guez/AFP/Getty Images)

At the White House on Tuesday, Israel will formalize peace with the United Arab Emirates and sign a declaration of peace with Bahrain. For some, this event symbolizes the advent of a new day in the region. Others bemoan it for rewarding the Israelis and doing little to end the occupation of the Palestinians.

The latter tend to ignore that at least in the UAE’s case, its decision stopped Israel’s unilateral annexation of the territories allotted to it by the Trump peace plan. As such, they overlook that it very clearly applied the concept of linkage in any Arab moves toward Israel: for partial or full normalization by Arab states, Israel will need to take positive — or in the UAE’s case, avoid negative — steps toward the Palestinians.…  Seguir leyendo »

The Emirati, U.S. and Israeli flags are pictured attached to an airplane of Israel's El Al upon its arrival at the Abu Dhabi airport in the first commercial flight from Israel to the United Arab Emirates on Aug. 31. (Karim Sahib/AFP/Getty Images)

Some observers seem to assume that the recent agreement to normalize relations between Israel and the United Arab Emirates means the end of efforts to achieve a reasonable, two-state outcome to the Israel-Palestinian conflict. Some Israelis may hope that improving relations with Arab states would obviate the need for further negotiations with the Palestinians.

Yet the Palestinians are not going anywhere, and the reality is that Israel cannot retain its core character as both a Jewish and democratic state if it ignores the Palestinian issue. Fortunately, those who still seek a two-state solution have no cause for despair. The Emirati-Israeli breakthrough could be a much-needed bridge to overcoming the current impasse.…  Seguir leyendo »

On 13 August 2020, US President Donald Trump announced the establishment of diplomatic relations between Israel and the United Arab Emirates (UAE). He celebrated the development as a breakthrough that will “advance peace in the Middle East.” The two states plan to exchange ambassadors and begin open cooperation in areas of security, tourism, trade, and healthcare. The agreement makes the United Arab Emirates the fourth Arab country—after Egypt, Jordan, and Mauritania—to formally recognize Israel. In exchange, the government of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu appeared to pledge not to move forward with annexation, with the White House declaring that Israel had agreed to “suspend declaring sovereignty over areas outlined in the [US] president’s Vision for Peace and focus its efforts now on expanding ties with other countries in the Arab and Muslim world.”…  Seguir leyendo »

The impending peace agreement between the United Arab Emirates and Israel is a game-changer for the entire Middle East.

In addition to wedding one of world’s wealthiest states (the UAE) with its most innovative (Israel), it also opens new avenues toward peace. Realizing that other Arab states may soon follow the UAE’s lead, and that time is no longer on their side, the Palestinians may well return to the negotiating table.

An Israeli public that is secure in its newfound relations with the Arab world will be more likely to make concessions. Stalemated for almost 30 years, the peace process might finally be revived.…  Seguir leyendo »

We don’t hear many good news stories out of the Middle East, particularly recently, in the midst of the despair over Beirut, regional conflicts and the ravages of covid-19. But on Thursday there was a hopeful development: President Trump announced a historic peace agreement that will normalize relations between the United Arab Emirates and Israel.

Now what had been taking place below the table will be put on top of it. Security cooperation can be acknowledged in public and won’t have to exist in the shadows. Israeli companies will be able to operate openly in the UAE, and Israelis will be able to fly directly to the Emirates using their Israeli passports.…  Seguir leyendo »

The useless agreement between the United Arab Emirates and Israel is nothing but a ploy to artificially inflate the Trump administration’s foreign policy achievements ahead of the election. In real terms, it was nothing but leaders trading with used goods.

On Thursday, President Trump announced that U.S. diplomats had brokered a major breakthrough. The agreement basically declares that the corrupt government of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu will postpone its plans for the unilateral annexation of occupied Palestinian land in return for normalization with a small but rich Arab Gulf state. The problem with the big hoopla around this is that it is neither a genuine breakthrough nor will it bring peace between Israelis and Arabs anytime soon.…  Seguir leyendo »

Amos Oz, the Israeli writer who was also a founder of the Peace Now movement, was once asked by a Norwegian journalist why Jews and Palestinians couldn’t just live as equal citizens in a single state. Oz countered by asking why Norway and Sweden couldn’t just merge into a single state, too, as they had been for most of the 19th century.

“Clearly, Mr. Oz,” the journalist replied, “you know nothing about the Swedes!”

I heard Oz tell this story many years ago, so it might have been a Swedish journalist talking about Norwegians. But the point is the same: If Norwegians don’t want to share a state with Swedes, if Scots may not want to share a state with the English, or Catalans with Spaniards, then how can anyone imagine Israelis and Palestinians, with rivers of blood between them, joining hands in a common political enterprise?…  Seguir leyendo »

On Monday, the Democratic Platform Drafting Committee debated and voted on the party’s 2020 platform, which outlines the party’s ideals and plans for the country over the next four years. As Palestinian-Americans and delegates to the Democratic National Convention, we are deeply dismayed that the language on Israel-Palestine once again ignores reality and basic Palestinian rights, and falls far short of a fair and just policy and the stated values of the party. We are further disappointed and disheartened by a drafting and voting process that was anything but open, inclusive and democratic.

As in 2016, this year the DNC again refused to acknowledge the fundamental reality that millions of Palestinians have lived under brutal Israeli military rule for more than 53 years, omitting any reference to Israel’s “occupation” of Palestinian lands.…  Seguir leyendo »

Este mes se cumplen veinte años desde que el presidente estadounidense Bill Clinton invitó al primer ministro israelí Ehud Barak y al presidente de la Organización para la Liberación de Palestina Yasir Arafat a una cumbre para la paz en Camp David, en un audaz esfuerzo para solucionar uno de los conflictos más prolongados de la era moderna. Aunque no se logró ningún acuerdo, la cumbre, en la cual participé, no fue un fracaso: el marco que produjo se convirtió en la base sobre la cual el Clinton construyó sus «parámetros para la paz»: la interpretación más equitativa y realista de una solución con dos estados que se haya creado.…  Seguir leyendo »

El conflicto palestino-israelí desgarra Oriente Próximo desde hace más de 70 años. Mi país, Colombia, padeció una guerra similar, larga y encarnizada, que parecía eterna e imposible de resolver.

El camino a la paz exigió valor y magnanimidad. Como amigo de Israel, me preocupa profundamente ver que esos dos valores están totalmente ausentes de los planes de su Gobierno para anexionarse partes de Cisjordania.

Cuando yo era presidente de Colombia, el venezolano Hugo Chávez dijo que mi país era “el Israel de Latinoamérica”. ¡Lo recibí como un elogio! Israel, con su capacidad de resistencia, su espíritu emprendedor y su innovaciones tecnológicas, tiene mucho que admirar.…  Seguir leyendo »

Houses are pictured in the Maale Adumim settlement in the West Bank east of Jerusalem. The Israeli government has delayed plans to annex Jewish settlements in the West Bank and in the Jordan Valley. Photo: Getty Images

Observers of the Israel-Palestine conflict have been anticipating Israeli Prime Minister, Benjamin Netanyahu’s, announcement to annex parts of the West Bank. It has been a tumultuous year for Israeli politics which has seen three inconclusive elections and resulted in a sharing of power between Netanyahu and Benny Gantz of the Blue and White party. However, since the coalition government was sworn in, Netanyahu has appeared to not lose any time in moving forward with his plans.

Annexation has long been Netanyahu’s political aspiration and was part of his recent re-election platform but the anticipated announcement from the Israeli government didn’t come straight away.…  Seguir leyendo »

Israeli soldiers interacting in the West Bank last month with a Palestinian woman protesting the demolition of an unapproved animal shed. Credit Abed Al Hashlamoun/EPA, via Shutterstock

I was 22 in 1993 when Yitzhak Rabin and Yasir Arafat shook hands on the White House lawn to officially begin the peace process that many hoped would create a Palestinian state alongside Israel. I’ve been arguing for a two-state solution — first in late-night bull sessions, then in articles and speeches — ever since.

I believed in Israel as a Jewish state because I grew up in a family that had hopscotched from continent to continent as diaspora Jewish communities crumbled. I saw Israel’s impact on my grandfather and father, who were never as happy or secure as when enveloped in a society of Jews.…  Seguir leyendo »