When blackmail becomes policy

For ʹPalestinian peace processʹ read ʹIran war processʹ

The success of the Israeli-Palestinian peace process model is there for all to borrow and copy. Create a regional ʹprocessʹ sponsored or led by the U.S. and attach to it ʹpeaceʹ, ʹwarʹ, or any other temptingly big carrot, then woo and blackmail the desperate parties you are targeting by turns. Essay by Khaled Hroub

During this ongoing process – lasting more than a quarter of a century – the Palestinian donkey has run itself into the ground chasing an elusive carrot: the hope of a Palestinian state. Over this period, the donkey has been sent hither and thither, swinging the carrot this way and that. While any form of meaningful peace on Palestine was truly buried, the genius process continued to run the show.

Martin Indyk, Assistant Secretary of State for Middle East Affairs and former ambassador to Israel during the Clinton administration, once said "We are using the engine of peace-making to transform the region." Indeed they were and they have succeeded.

The process created the diplomatic context and the excuse for Israel to carry on with its own agenda of occupation in Palestine, while reflecting an image desirous of peace back into the regional and international arena, under the pretext that peace with the Palestinians was ʹin progressʹ and that reaching a final settlement was just a matter of time.

Under cover of the peace process Israeli achievements accumulated: the territory of the future Palestinian state, the carrot that got decayed over years of chasing, became dismembered by frenzied settlement activities.

Heavy equipment clears land for new Jewish homes in the Israeli settlement of Shiloh in the West Bank,  17 November 2016 (photo: picture-alliance/newscom/D. Hill)
The engine of 'peace-making' at work: the "process" created the diplomatic context and the excuse for Israel to carry on with its own agenda of occupation, dismembering the territory of any future Palestinian state, while reflecting an image desirous of peace back into the regional and international arena

The Palestinian Authority that was supposed to be a mere interim administration for five years and the nucleus of any future state became a de facto security apparatus, operating to protect settlers and arrest angry Palestinians daring to put up any resistance.

Palestinian politics and geography were manoeuvred into a destructive divide between Fatah and Hamas, the West Bank and Gaza Strip, with Israel playing both off against each other, allowing the rivals enough leeway to fight each other, but not to harm Israel.

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Comments for this article: For ʹPalestinian peace processʹ read ʹIran war processʹ

Yes, good. I would add one important element though: control of the region by the U.S., a hegemon, and Israel, an ally, has to be viewed vis-a-vis a rival or rivals. Iran is one, but China and Russia are two others and it is very crucial that their power is undermined. The U.S. is losing its primacy in Southeast Asia. The Middle East has to remain as leverage for its geo-political and economic primacy, not for oil (America doesn't need Middle Eastern oil), and not only for the arms industry (arms sales are still a fraction of the American GDP), but for capital outflows (as the author mentioned, assisting more or less the stagnating Western, especially European economies and maintaining domestic consent/stability/wealth) and hegemony and/or over others.

Nadeem17.05.2019 | 13:30 Uhr