Archive for August 5th, 2009

Jimmy Carter was correct in his assessment of Israel

General (Ret) James David (who wrote the introduction to the Haaretz article below) is mentioned on the cover of the third edition of former Republican Congressional representative Paul Findley’s ‘The Dare to Speak Out’  book about the power/influence of the pro-Israel lobby (AIPAC and similar) on the US political system and media:

Wednesday, August 5, 2009 6:37 AM
From: General (Ret) James David
I am pleased to see the number of articles criticizing Israel over the recent evictions of two Palestinian families from their homes this week.  In addition, the U.S. State Department summoned  Israel’s ambassador to Washington, to tell him that the United States views Sunday’s eviction of two Palestinian families from homes in East Jerusalem as a “provocative” and “unacceptable” act that violates Israel’s obligations under the road map peace plan.  It would’ve been even more satisfying if Israel was ordered to remove the settlers and let the original Arab occupants back in their homes.  The U.S. media is doing their best to keep the news silent.  The actions by the Israelis do nothing but confirms the subject of Jimmy Carter’s book “Palestine: Peace not Apartheid.”  I wonder how the Jewish board members who protested and resigned over Carter’s book feel now?  If this isn’t a form of apartheid, then nothing is.  
Here is the latest editorial, and it’s not from the U.S. media but from the Israeli newspaper Haaretz.  It seems that the Israelis never end their repressive PR image.  Is it no wonder Israel is looked upon by the rest of the world as the biggest obstacle to peace?
Last update – 02:23 05/08/2009
Editorial / Israel must allow evicted Arab families to return home
By Haaretz Editorial
Tags: East Jerusalem, Sheikh Jarrah 
The eviction of two Palestinian families from their homes in the East Jerusalem neighborhood of Sheikh Jarrah, in order to replace them with Jewish families, predictably sparked harsh condemnations. U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton urged the government to refrain from such actions, which she described as “provocative.”Sweden, which holds the European Union’s rotating presidency, asserted that the evictions were illegal, while UN Special Coordinator for the Middle East Peace Process Robert Serry said they were violations of both the Geneva Conventions and Israel’s obligations under the road map peace plan.The sight of the evicted Palestinian families, who had lived in these houses for decades, paints Israel in the world’s eyes as a country that maintains a cruel regime of occupation, oppresses the weak and strives to create political facts in the disputed city under the guise of the “rule of law.” 


But for all its importance, this international criticism is not what makes the eviction of these families completely unacceptable. A democratic state that strives for peace and justice simply has no right to uproot families who became refugees in 1948. They left homes in West Jerusalem behind them, and were subsequently granted modest accommodations by the Jordanian government. The claim that the houses in Sheikh Jarrah were purchased by Jews in the early 1900s is a double-edged sword that opens a political and legal Pandora’s box.
No thinking person will be persuaded that Jews have a sweeping right to return to their homes in East Jerusalem as long as Israeli law not only bars Palestinians from returning to their homes in West Jerusalem, but even evicts them from the houses where they have lived for the last 60 years. The Israel Lands Administration’s regulations do not even allow Palestinian residents of East Jerusalem to buy land and houses in many parts of the city.
The least that can be expected of a state that legalized the expropriation of thousands of dunams in East Jerusalem to build 50,000 apartments for its citizens is to once and for all deprive extremists of the right to turn Jerusalem into an obstacle to peace and a stumbling block to reconciliation between the two peoples that inhabit this city.

The government must immediately return the Palestinian residents to their homes in Sheikh Jarrah and cancel the eviction orders that have been issued against additional houses. And the neighborhood’s fate must be determined via diplomatic negotiations.

Related articles:
Washington summons Israel envoy over East Jerusalem eviction
Egypt sharply protests Sheikh Jarrah evictions



US, EU blast Israel over Jerusalem evictions