Palestinian dispossession is nothing new, but the world wasn’t always watching – Open Democracy

Posted By on August 5, 2021

On 31 July 1951, the Supreme Court recognised that there was no justification for the prolonged delay in the return of the villagers, who had complied with the authorities request to move out for a short time. Nevertheless, the army systematically blew up every building in the two villages, except the churches, a portion of the land was given to Israeli towns, and no Palestinians were allowed to return.

Therefore, there is nothing exceptional about the targeting of Palestinians in Jerusalem and the ongoing effort to uproot them from Sheikh Jarrah and Silwan, with the support of the right-wing government. Palestinians in the so-called mixed cities in Israel, where the exception proves the rule of separation, have for years struggled against de-Arabising efforts in their cities, which occur either through gentrification or by the Torah Nucleus, an association of right-wing religious Zionist settlers who set up home with the explicit goal of establishing a Jewish majority.

The peaceful protests of 48 Palestinians against the repression and persecution of Palestinians in Jerusalem, and later the war on Gaza in May, were brutally suppressed by the Israeli police. Things escalated after an armed Jewish-Israeli resident in the city of Lod shot and killed 32-year-old Palestinian Mousa Hassouna in early May. A state of emergency was announced in the city, and yet hundreds of armed Jewish settlers came into Lod, backed by Israeli police and supported by the mayor and other city officials. The attacks quickly spread to Haifa, Acre and other Palestinian localities.

Groups of young Israelis organised themselves on Telegram and marched on Palestinian neighbourhoods, carrying Israeli flags, unleashing violence, smashing Palestinian cars, marking Palestinian houses and shouting, The people of Israel live and Death to Arabs. What followed was a massive wave of arrests in Palestinian localities in Israel, targeting Palestinians.

Palestinian localities are usually under-policed when it comes to Arab organised crime, which last year alone caused more than 120 murders, but the moment people rose up for political rights, this was replaced by over-policing. The heavily armed police forces and the violent arrests reveal the clear intention of silencing Palestinians who dare to speak up against injustice and discrimination.

International public opinion has been a major concern of the Zionist movement in Palestine since its beginning. It has determined Israels double standard regarding the 48 Palestinians, and shaped its public discourse concerning the Occupied Territories since 1967, with all its talk of a peace process and two-state solution.

To force Israel to meet its commitment to the Palestinians social, political and cultural rights, Palestinians have intensified their international advocacy and have been reporting extensively to UN treaty-based bodies, as well as to the European Union, to no avail.

Failure to hold Israel accountable for its ongoing discriminatory colonial policies against Palestinians has allowed it to maintain a public image of equal citizenship amid an actual colonial reality of discrimination.

Sadly, the insistence of the international community on what The New York Times has termed the two-state illusion, guaranteeing the permanence of the Jewish state and keeping the Palestinian Authority in power, despite its corruption, enables it to consolidate its authoritarianism.

Reports by B'Tselem and Human Rights Watch and the recent decision of the Human Rights Council to investigate human rights violations against Palestinians are unprecedented and significant. But it was decades of peaceful struggle that motivated them, and decades of international support for Israel that delayed them. This international support is what has allowed Israel to maintain and strengthen Jewish dominance and supremacy, from the Jordan River to the Mediterranean Sea, while imposing a colonial reality on Palestinians.

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Palestinian dispossession is nothing new, but the world wasn't always watching - Open Democracy

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