During a recent press conference, Austrian Foreign Minister Dr. Michael Spindelegger called for a stop of construction of jewish squatter colonies in the West Bank and East Jerusalem, for a removal of the outposts emplaced since 2001, and for an end of the israeli “blockade policy”, stressing that “a peace process in the Middle East that deserves this name would be in Israel’s very own interest”. Minister Spindelegger gave this press conference on 14 October 2009, at the end of a visit by israeli foreign minister Libermann in Austria. The visit had previously been announced by Libermann, implying that Austria, among other countries, “had not yet received his attention”, as if his dropping by was a great favor to these countries. The full text of the press release of the Austrian foreign ministry follows (emphasis mine – click on pictures to see them bigger):
“There will be no success overnight in the Middle East. Yet we must exploit every opportunity for movement”, said Foreign Minister Michael Spindelegger after his meeting with Israeli Foreign Minister Avigdor Liberman in Vienna. “A peace process in the Middle East that deserves this name would be in Israel’s very own interest. The development of Israeli relations with Egypt and Jordan in recent decades shows that sustainable peace results in a concrete security gain for Israel”, stressed Spindelegger.
“No partner in the region can evade its responsibility”. Everyone must make their contribution toward creating an atmosphere that allows for serious negotiations”, said the Minister, who also described the clear expectations toward Israel: “We demand a credible stop to the illegal settlement policy, even in Eastern Jerusalem, and the dismantling of the outer posts that have been illegally erected since 2001. Likewise, Israel should put an end to the humanitarian suffering in the Gaza Strip and lift the suffocating blockade policy.”
At the same time, Palestinians must also make their contribution. “A lasting internal Palestinian reconciliation, a convincing rejection of violence, and the recognition of Israel’s right to exist are indispensable concessions for realizing the vision of an own state for the Palestinian people”, said Spindelegger.
The two Ministers also discussed the Goldstone report on the Gaza conflict in the beginning of the year. “The report, which is to be further debated by the UN Human Rights Council, contains serious accusations against both conflict parties. It should form the basis for Israel and the Palestinians to carry out comprehensive internal examinations into the accusations. The objective is also to build up mutual trust. There can be no blank spots on the map of humanitarian international law in the Middle East”, stressed Spindelegger.
Source (Austrian Foreign Ministry).
As a Palestinian and a journalist who has written about the Palestinian issue for many years, I would first of all thank Minister Spindelegger for his clear words in regards to the most pressing issues which affect the Palestinian people. His short statement contains some of the most courageous and lucid words from a politician which I remember. That said, I find it equally important to comment his statement so as to clarify the position and the wishes of the great majority of my people, but also to put it in the context of applicable international laws and treaties as I understand them. The first issue which must be addressed is the call to Palestinians to “recognize the right to exist of Israel”. Given the facts on the ground and in international laws, this repetitious call by all western states is artless. The colonial project Israel was forced upon us by the western states through the UN, against the UN charter and against other international laws and customs of the time. Let us just state that UN Resolution 181, partitioning Palestine and adjudicating a great part of it to European jewry, is of questionable legality and legitimacy at the very least.
Since then, and before, Palestine has never had a legally constituted government which could “recognize the right to exist” of this foraneous entity in the name of all Palestinians. More even, there is no place within current international laws and treaties, of which I would be aware, which stipulates a clear “right to exist” to any state, even to Israel, whose property of and ability to be a “subject of international law” (a state) does not go far beyond its self-given label, “State of israel”. The fact that the proponents of Israel, via their friends in western governments, continuously call for us to “recognize the right to exist” of Israel is clear testimony of the weakness of the position of Israel when claiming legitimacy for their right to exist in Palestine and at the great expense and suffering of the Palestinian people. States far more legitimate than Israel who have had their non-existing “right to exist” revoked are Yugoslavia, the Soviet Union, Korea (still partitioned), and possibly others. So much for a position strictly within international law. Yet, to still call upon Palestinians to recognize as right what is no right under such conditions is pure and simple chutzpah, because the simple fact is that the “right to exist” of Israel has been implicitly accepted even by Hamas, and in this all political factions of Palestine agree:
Israel has the right to exist within the borders of 1967
The next issue which needs to be addressed is the call of Minister Spindelegger for “a lasting internal reconciliation of Palestinians” as well “renunciation from violence”. This call is astonishing to say the least. Let us remember that in 2006 there were elections in Palestine, to which the European Union (and others) sent observers. The elections were approved by the observers as clean and fair, and fully compliant with all laws and regulations. The elections were won by a wide margin by Hamas, not because the people like them, but because Hamas is widely perceived to be less corrupt then Fatah. But the EU, even before the elections, when preliminary polls showed that Hamas would win, hastened to abridge the “right of free determination” of the Palestinian people, which is mentioned in international law, specifically in the UN Charter, by declaring Hamas a terrorist organization for no discernible reason other than israeli incitement. The net result of this unwarranted act on part of the EU is the situation in which we are today:
- About half of the Palestinian Parliament members incarcerated, in hiding or murdered by Israel, the group of traitors, thugs and corruptionists around Fatah/PA/Dahlan accorded a contrived status of “state” and some of the cronies of this mafia treated as “ambassadors” in many countries while they have neither legitimacy, are a state, nor represent anybody beyond their own pocket, and have done more to harm the legitimate rights of the Palestinian people than anybody else. Whatever legitimacy the PA had left is gone because they are de-facto an agency of the State of Israel
- The EU is financing the notorious mobster Dahlan, who was forced out of Gaza due to his crimes there, and he now runs death squads doing the dirty work for Israel
- Hamas, equally questionable, elevated to the status of a “quasi-state” while it is not, and demonized as only sick minds could do, is used by Israel as a pretext to pseudo-legitimize crimes so horrible that there is no precedent for them in known human history
- The Palestinians of both the West Bank and Gaza reduced to misery, and the “Israeli Arabs”, Palestinians but with a different label,courtesy of the European jews, not much better off.
What gives? All of this has been “business as usual” at least since the genocidal interventions of Churchill in the region: bomb the Arabs into submission and claim that it is for their own good, make up laws and “stuff” as one goes, call the victims of atrocities to abide by laws and “renounce violence” while claiming to be carrying “the burden of the white man”, and in case anybody starts understanding the rules and playing by them, provoke them until they lash out and then call them terrorists if they are not corrupt enough. The result of this attitude on part of the western countries is lawlessness and impunity for jews, not Palestinians, who are the victims of the lawlessness under which Israel exists, and which is in part tolerated and in part promoted by these same “friends” of israel. As a Palestinian, I think that not only Minister Spindelegger, but also the authorities of other countries who arrogate for themselves the title of “state of law” would do good in exercising some introspection and reading through the ample body of agreements which their countries have signed during recent history, reading their national laws, and keeping to them.
The result of such a salutary reconsideration of the own laws and relations with other nations will hopefully be that less calls are made towards Palestinian factions of varied degrees of legitimacy to betray our legitimate interests and give even more of what has already been stolen from us by the Israelis. This has already been tried without success for over 60 years. To continue “trying to attain peace” in this way will only serve to completely de-legitimize and ultimately accelerate the collapse israel as a viable project, doing far more damage to them than what the atrocities which they perpetrated upon Gaza. I propose that not only Austria, but other countries, start acting as the state of law which they claim they are. This way opens up interesting possibilities for a durable and just peace in the Middle East.
Some specific measures, proposals, questions
The criminal psychopath of Moldavian nationality, Josef Lieberman/Liberman, who just now visited Austria in his quality as a foreign minister of Israel
- Lives in one of the squatter colony in the West Bank which are the problem, and is thus one of the criminals who cause all these troubles in first place
- Seriously called, in public, for the Aswan Dam in Egypt to be bombed, while he was a member of the Knesset, what would cause the death of tens of millions of Egyptians and the complete ruination for all survivors, as most people in Egypt live along the Nile downstream of Aswan. This is a clear and unambiguous incitement to genocide, sanctioned under the “Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide”, a.k.a „Resolution 260 (III) A of the United Nations General Assembly on 9 December 1948“ as a crime equal to actual genocide. This is proscribed in Israel by a law, in Austria by Paragraph 321 of the penal code
- Publicly called for all Arabs to be expelled from “Israel”, meaning Israel and the Palestinian territories, while he was a member of the Knesset. This is a clear and unambiguous call for ethnic cleansing, a crime proscribed in the Rome Statute of the ICC, of which Austria is a signatory
- Publicly called for dropping nuclear weapons on Gaza while he was a member of the Knesset. This happened partially because Israel used depleted Uranium ammunitions during the massacre last January. How is this called in law? Incitement to commit crimes against humanity? Genocide? Or war crimes perhaps?
- Publicly called for bombing Damascus, Syria. Again, how is this sanctioned in law? War of aggression? Genocide? War crimes? Crimes against humanity?
Why was he not arrested, why has nobody yet issued an international arrest warrant against him? For what is the Interpol good if criminal psychopaths such as this one can fly around posing as “foreign minister” in good standing? Seriously, why is this creep not put into a straight jacket, as would happen to everybody else with such “political” ideas? In the same vein, there is the question of the interpretation of jurisdiction in cases deriving from the Geneva conventions, the convention on the punishment of genocide, the Rome statute, and other bodies of international law. As things are currently, the restrictive interpretation of the jurisdiction over atrocious crimes is simply not warranted when one reads these treaties, which are supposedly law, and which in fact have caused many countries to incorporate them as part of their national laws.
Why is the issue of jurisdiction in the cases of genocide, crimes against humanity and crimes of war consistently interpreted in a way which is so convenient for the psychopaths who instigate and commit genocide, and who make lots of money from committing these atrocious crimes? This single issue puts in question the legitimacy and validity of exactly all international agreements and conventions, the legitimacy (and usefulness) of the the UN as a whole, and it should allow for some serious questions about the authorities who persistently find ways to not implement them. This corresponds to what I think that Minister Spindelegger meant when he alluded to “blank spots on the map of international humanitarian law”. And this brings me to article 49 of the fourth Geneva Convention of 1949, where it says
“The Occupying Power shall not deport or transfer parts of its own civilian population into the territory it occupies.”
This certainly applies to Liberman/Liebermann and the 350.000 or so jewish squatter in the West Bank, most of whom are US and European nationals (some Austrians are sure among them). Why I mention this is that it appears that there are even greater “blank spots” in Europe when it comes to complying with the international humanitarian laws and conventions. The issue is, from where do these “settlers” come? The answer, as already known, is that they are mostly European and US nationals. So, what are these people doing in the West Bank and why do they go there if they are not being incited by somebody to go there? And, why is it possible for people from so many countries to be incited, in conniving violation of article 49 of the fourth Geneva Convention of 1949 (and other bodies of international law), to leave their homes for a “free for all” with guaranteed lawlessness in Palestine? As I see things, jews are far from being discriminated in their countries of origin, including Austria, so it must be something else attracting them to my country. Specifically, why does Austria, as well as other states, tolerate that certain extremist sects of jewish extraction incite their believers, with a peculiar mix of claptrap wrapped in religious piety, to participate in crimes as described in sections 6 to 8 of the Rome Statute of the ICC, and why is this going on with impunity until now? Should it not be of primary interest to Austria and other countries to stop the activity of these extremist sects, thus eliminating the alluded to “blank spots”?
Is it not also in the interest of countries like Austria to investigate which of its nationals took part, for example, in the atrocities in Gaza during last December and January? Many IDF reservists have European nationality, and it is very likely that a significant part of them were involved in this crime in one way or another. Impunity of these and other people will certainly be counterproductive in any efforts to attain peace in the region. The converse, to continue loafing, studiously looking away and blaming the victim each time the Israelis commit atrocities, will leave the way free for novel initiatives towards the solution of the problem which Israel has become for all the world,not only Palestinians. For instance, until now no serious attempts have been made by knowledgeable jurists towards decisively discrediting the notion that the “State of Israel” has a standing before international laws and customs, despite it being more or less known that there are some serious weak spots there which would cause Israel to collapse on its own when nobody is able profess ignorance any more.
I think that Israel seriously miscalculated in Lebanon 2006 and in Gaza at the beginning of this year. These two grave errors, their continued and brutal lawlessness in the West Bank and their response to the Goldstone Report, now including threats of “economic sanctions” against the West Bank, where most people are already destitute victims of the unending criminality of Israel, more than qualifies Israel to be called hostis humani generis, a temporary autonomous zone posing as a state (this also as an answer to some rhetoric questions which Bibi posed: YES, Yes and yes!). The coming attack on Iran, which is forecast to take place by the end of this month, could be their final error, before they disband or are forced to disband, because after that nobody will be able to have anything to do with the zionists without affecting ones personal and professional standing, at the very least.