Submitted by Serban V.C. Enache…
Paula Slier did a great interview with Palestinian PM Mohammad Shtayyeh in Ramallah to discuss negotiations between Palestine and Israel. Slier asked some tough questions and Shtayyeh gave equally tough answers.
The Palestinian PM said that the US, given its strategic military alliance with Israel, is not an honest peace broker for the two state solution. On Syria, Shtayyeh welcomed Trump’s announcement of leaving Syria, albeit with due skepticism, and also emphasized Russia’s positive role as a critical geopolitical counter to the United States in the region. Shtayyeh was very polite in describing Trump’s policy toward the Palestinians. I won’t be so polite. Trump is a snake oil salesman, a flip-flopper, a poser, and a cuck of the Zionists – who is ultimately opposed only in form to Globalism, not in essence. He wants the NWO “control-room” to reside in North America [aka. Washington], and not remain outsourced. He doesn’t care about US soldiers shooting and getting shot in theatres that have nothing to do whatsoever with the USA’s national interest [interest defined in Westphalian terms]. He doesn’t care about other countries’ sovereignty. He only cares to turn the [mercenary] US military into a higher paid organization than in the previous epoch, and only cares to give front row seat in war profits to US corporations. That’s what Trump means by “America first.” Gotta “secure the oil” somehow, right? Gotta swell those bank accounts with blood money while pretending not to be a neocon, even though he constantly surrounds himself with swamp dwellers; even though his USMCA [NAFTA 2.0] consolidates Big Tech’s powers of censorship, all the while crying foul play against establishment [liberal] platforms. Pray Tulsi becomes POTUS, otherwise Trump’s going to pull a Bush Jr. and Obama second term on world affairs faster that anyone can say “bipolar” or “traitor.” Expect new hotspots in the South China Sea and across South America. But I digress…
Referring to the so-called deal of the century put forth by Jarred Kushner, the Palestinian PM said the issue wasn’t taken seriously at all. The plan’s political side contains no mention of two states, Jerusalem as the capital of Palestine, refugees, the 1967 borders, and the removal of the Jewish settlements from the occupied territories. Shtayyeh said the US has no European or Arab partner for this deal. In bilateral negotiations, the Palestinian PM said that what the Israelis want is to have the interim solution as the permanent solution.
Paula Slier asked the PM what needs to happen in order for peace to be achieved. He outlined five issues [that had never been honored]: clear terms of reference [international law], good intentions, confidence building measures [like stopping settlements], honest broker, the time frame [28 years of bilateral negotiations without any success, hence the need for multilateralism]. When asked if he would work with a compromise solution [Gantz + Netanyahu], Shtayyeh said he hopes to work with somebody who is willing to end the occupation [started in 1967]. As far as he’s concerned, the Palestinians owe it to themselves to resist the occupation, while Israel is the party that must offer a settlement.
Asked about talks between the Saudi Government and Netanyahu’s administration, Shtayyeh said he didn’t believe it. He judged it as disinformation disseminated by Netanyahu. On this issue, the Palestinian PM is, in my opinion, in outright denial. Faisal bin Abdulaziz has been dead for almost fifty years. Faisal’s geopolitics are no longer practiced by the Kingdom. Obviously, Shtayyeh can’t say anything bad about them in public, but if like Abbas, he thinks the Saudis have their backs [vis-a-vis the US and Israel], he is dead wrong.
Paula Slier reminded the PM of Moscow’s offer to host Israeli-Palestinian peace talks. Shtayyeh said that in the past the Palestinian side informed Vladimir Putin that they’re up for it, so long as the Israelis are willing to put something on the table. He also said that while the United States is trying to destroy international law, Russia and China are its guarantors. With regard to Hamas-Fatah relations, Shtayyeh said Hamas’ model is “division of labor.” He said Hamas likes to distribute money that someone else provides, that they like to have the underground and also be the ruling party. Fatah doesn’t accept this model – they want a single, unified authority. Shtayyeh said they spent 12 years negotiating with Hamas, signed four agreements, none of which Hamas implemented. The Palestinian PM said the only way forward is to have elections, stressing that practicing democracy is crucial for Palestine’s existence. Paula Slier reminded the PM that Hamas is supported by Iran. To which, Shtayyeh said it’s not helpful for foreign countries to sponsor factionalism. He expressed hope that Iran will offer aid to Palestine as a whole, rather than to one political party over another.
With regard to cooperation with Israeli forces or lack of it, the PM said that there’s only cooperation on picking olives. Israeli soldiers enter Palestinian areas with impunity whenever they want. Slier asked the PM why it’s important for the Palestinian Authority to pay the Palestinian families of those who have killed Israelis. To this sharp question, Shtayyeh said that this policy isn’t expressly for such cases. He noted that many of those sitting in Israeli jails, including many children, are not murderers, but people who have been wrongfully detained for simply raising the Palestinian flag, or defending their property. The PM raised Andreas Breivik and Yigal Amir [Yitzhak Rabin’s assassin] as examples of detained killers who receive social allowance from their respective states. Asked that, by financially supporting the families of the Palestinians who killed Israelis, the Palestinian Authority is condoning violence and murder, Shtayyeh said the opposite is true. He said that 3 million Palestinians reside in the West Bank and 2 million in Gaza; and that 1 million Palestinians have been in Israeli prisons since 1967 up to the present. Supporting families and their kids, all victims of violence, is not the same as supporting violence, he concluded – and pointed to the incitement done by Israeli politicians and settlers.
Asked about economic feasibility, Shtayyeh said that Israel controls every key aspect of logistics and economics. Due to new [negative] developments in the Middle East, Palestinian sponsors have dwindled in number alongside the total sum of donations. I can’t stress this enough, a two state solution will leave Palestine a de facto vassal state of Israel. They cannot achieve economic independence. They will always be at the mercy of foreign donors and lenders; and Israel will always control the situation on the ground.
Lastly, Shtayyeh said that Israel is interested in falsifying the narrative about Palestine and its issues. He said the solution has got to be political; the issue isn’t about whether Israel is a Jewish state or not, or whether Palestine is a Christian or Islamic country or not. He called Israel a colonial regime that should cease its occupation of Palestinian territory. Shtayyeh said the Palestinian economy has been designed to serve the Israeli economy, instead of its own people. He wasn’t very confident about statehood and peace being achieved in his lifetime, nonetheless, hope springs eternal… Another fine interview by the pertinent and charming Paula Slier.
The statements, views and opinions expressed in this column are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of The Duran.