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Fine studies of Israel's war on the Palestinians
on 29 November 2010
This is a brilliant collection of essays and interviews by Noam Chomsky and Ilan Pappé, the well-known Israeli historian. Edited by Frank Barat, it comprises eight pieces: The fate of Palestine: an interview with Noam Chomsky; two essays by Ilan Pappé: Clusters of history: US involvement in the Palestine question, and State of denial: the Nakbah in Israeli history and today; `Exterminate all the brutes': Gaza 2009, by Chomsky; Blueprint for a one-state movement: a troubled history, by Pappé; The ghettoisation of Palestine: a dialogue with the two authors; The killing fields of Gaza 2004-2009, by Pappé; and A Middle East peace that could happen (but won't), by Chomsky.
In June 2008, Israel and Hamas signed a ceasefire agreement, which Israel broke when it sent forces into Gaza on 4 November, and again when it launched its full-scale invasion on 27 December. Israeli forces used US-made white phosphorus shells against civilians, a war crime. In January 2009, the President of the UN General Assembly called Israel's attack on Gaza genocide. Israel still imposes its vicious blockade of Gaza: an ongoing war crime.
Israel could defend itself better by ending its criminal actions in occupied territories and accepting the two-state solution urged by the vast majority of the world (and vetoed at the UN by the USA ever since 1976). The Arab League, Hamas, Iran, Hezbollah, the Palestinian National Council all back the two-state solution (i.e., recognising Israel's right to exist). Only the USA, Israel and a few Pacific island US dependencies oppose it.
In December 2008, the US state opposed UN resolutions calling for `the right of the Palestinian people to self-determination' (it was passed by 173 votes to 5) and for the `universal freedom of travel and vital importance of family reunification' (probably because Israel bans entry to Palestinians from occupied territories who wish to join their Israeli spouses). The USA also voted against regulating the arms trade, against the right to development, and against the right to food. The USA alone opposed this last resolution, an appalling vote in view of the huge global food crisis.
The authors show how the US state sabotages diplomacy and opposes democracy and how the EU always backs the USA.