THE Palestinian Israeli ‘peace talks’, officially began on Monday but actually the process began on the Sunday in Ramallah when Palestinian police attacked protesters in Ramallah.
Hundreds of protesters affiliated to the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine rallied in Ramallah on Sunday against the decision to return to peace talks with Israel.
Clashes erupted after Palestinian police attacked the protesters as they marched toward the presidential compound. Injuries were reported on both sides.
Prisoner rights group Addameer said police injured dozens of protesters and arrested demonstrators in public hospitals after the attempt to march to the Presidential compound.
The Palestinian people are being forced into ‘peace talks’ by the United States on behalf of Israel with the Palestinian leadership in Ramallah refusing to tolerate any questioning of the decision to take part.
To rub salt into the wound, the US Secretary of State John Kerry urged Israelis and Palestinians to work in good faith and make ‘compromises’, and then appointed a Zionist and former two-times US ambassador to Israel, Martin Indyk, as the US special envoy to the talks.
He is long experienced in dealing with the Palestinian ‘problem’ and was present at the infamous Camp David summit in 2000, under President Clinton, when Yasser Arafat sealed his fate by refusing to give up the Palestinian right to return.
Israel and the Palestinians remain deeply divided over so-called ‘final status issues’ – with Israel refusing to stop settlement building, refusing to recognise the right to return, and refusing to accept that East Jerusalem should be the capital of a Palestinian state.
It has suggested a land swap where the Palestinians would be given chunks of the Negev Desert, while Israel acquired the Jordan Valley and the currently settled areas. Instead of a Palestinian state Israel favours that the Palestinian ‘entity’ should form a confederation with Jordan.
Netanyahu’s cabinet has, in fact, decided that any territorial changes agreed at the just-begun talks would have to be put to an Israeli referendum.
State Department officials said the first meetings would aim to set out the procedures for the talks – which could last between six months and a year – with Israeli settlement building to continue during that time.
Talks of this duration would serve to keep the Palestinians quiet while the US gets on with the job of reorganising the Middle East as a whole.
Israel said on Sunday that it would release 104 Palestinians imprisoned before the 1993 Oslo accords – once the talks begin.
In fact, they will remain hostages, open to the threat of re-arrest should the talks falter.
At an Israeli cabinet meeting on Sunday, Economy Minister Naftali Bennett of the Jewish Home Party said Palestinian ‘terrorists’ should be killed instead of jailed, the Hebrew-language newspaper Yedioth Ahronoth reported.
When told such a policy would be illegal, Bennett responded that he had ‘killed many Arabs and I never had a problem,’ the report added.
He has called the proposed prisoner release a ‘disgrace’ and said ‘terrorists should be eliminated, not freed.’
The Palestinian people will achieve their independent state, with Jerusalem as its capital, and with its land free of all settlements, along with the right of refugees to return, only as part of a victorious Arab revolution against imperialist domination of the Middle East and the Gulf.
The attempt to be ‘partners’ of the US and Israel is the road to some new disaster.