April 25, 2010

The US/Israeli Endgame: Demilitarizing Palestine

A truer reflection of the US position towards on Israeli-Palestinian conflict than what’s going around lately - and why objective mediation from Washington is impossible. Zbigniew Brzezinski isn’t the top of the totem poll, but he’s not much lower either.

He epitomizes why both short and long term US mediation verges on futility and requires sweeping transformation to broker a real truce.

At first Brzezinski he takes an equitable route when asked by Foreign Policy who's to blame: “The United States. On more than one occasion it pledged to become seriously engaged in promoting peace, but in fact its engagement has been more rhetorical than real, lacking in will to use the obvious dependence of both the Israelis and the Palestinians on American support.”

Such rationality, wasted on a setup.

His “out-of-the-box idea: To announce to the world America's commitment to a framework for peace based on four key points, namely (1) no right of return for Palestinian refugees to Israel proper; (2) West Jerusalem as the seat for Israel's capital and East Jerusalem as the seat of the Palestinian capital with some internationally based sharing of the Old City; (3) the drawing of borders between the two states along the 1967 lines, adjusted on the basis of one-for-one swaps as the frontiers; and (4) an essentially demilitarized Palestinian state with U.S. or NATO forces on the west bank of the Jordan River.”

Would Israel give up half of Jerusalem to put Palestine in a cage? Because that is what Brzezinski is suggesting, essentially punishing Palestinians for using violence to resist Israel’s occupation and justifying the occupation. Israel’s security is a primary concern, but so too is the liberty of the Palestinians.

President Mahmoud Abbas referred to temporary borders as a trap, but that’s only one of the first traps.

Brzezinski’s “framework” could represent a large part of the US elite - and not necessarily the part that already supports Israeli absolutely - conjuring forecasts of inevitable failure. Besides the questions of why, if Brzezinski is so smart, deploying US troops in Palestine without a fair resolution is a good idea, and where the refugees would go, the Palestinians will refuse to accept a demilitarized state.

Israel is also going to want recognition and Palestinians an apology. Social norms matter. And on a higher strategic level, does a demilitarized Palestine discourage or encourage Arab and Muslim states to arm themselves? The latter is entirely possible.

Brzezinski is increasingly stepping out of the shadows to parrot his lines. Even if “indirect talks” manage to launch America is programming a crash course. President Obama doesn’t have much time to regain control of “his” White House if disagrees with any of this.

1 comment:

  1. I trust neither Israel nor the USA as far as finding a solution to the Palestine question is concerned.

    In fact, no solution may be possible. Although I write mostly about Chinese culture and Hong Kong, I recently wrote a lengthy piece on the Israel/Palestine conflict that you might find interesting: