Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Question for Elliot Abrams

On his CFR "Pressure Points" blog, former Iran-Contra liar Elliott Abrams bangs on about what he obviously sees as the silliness of tomorrow's scheduled UN General Assembly vote to recognize "Palestine."  He also reminds us all that afterwards, presuming that the vote will be favorable, the US (via Israel's amen corner in Congress) will promptly "punish" the UN by withdrawing its funding from any UN body in which a "Palestine" delegation will be allowed to participate (remember UNESCO?).

Abrams concludes, though, by admonishing Mahmoud Abbas and the Palestinians (whom he labels the PLO; nothing like raising the specter of Arafat and 1960s terrorism) to desist with silly UN resolutions and instead focus on building "a decent, prosperous, democratic state."

But here's my question for Abrams: how are Palestinians supposed to build a state without territory on which to build it?  For years, Abrams has tried to downplay the significance of Jewish settlement building in the West Bank - even as successive Israeli governments have ramped up their financial and military support for those settlements.  The settler movement wields extraordinary power in the Knesset.  And in recent days, Israeli PM Benjamin Netanyahu has melded his Likud party (historically the most stalwart proponent of Greater Israel/Judea and Samaria) with the Yisrael Beiteinu party of  Bibi's Minister of Foreign Affairs and Deputy Prime Minister Avigdor Lieberman, himself a resident of a West Bank settlement and on record with virulently racist anti-Arab comments.  

Bottom line: the Zionist colonization of the West Bank and East Jerusalem has become a juggernaut that can no longer be headed off.  Most Israelis hardly give a rat's behind about the fate of West Bank Arabs.  The ranks of the IDF are becoming increasingly imbued with a quasi-racist religious nationalism promoted by military rabbis who provide Biblical "justification" for the eradication of indigenous Palestinians.  

The "peace process" has become both a bad joke that Netanyahu can play on Abbas whenever he needs it - and a card that Abrams can cynically play whenever he sees Israel's interests threatened.

As for the US, the peace process has become a stained and shredded, but nonetheless still flapping, pendant which it pathetically lifts in order to remind the world that it is the "indispensable" global power.  Yet Russia and China will surely back the Palestinians' resolution in the UN.  And both France and Spain have declared their intention to support the resolution as well.

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