Los Angeles Times
Israel's settlements are on shaky ground
[NO, THIS WOMAN’S ARGUMENTS ARE ON SHAKY GROUND. ACTUALLY THERE IS A CAVERN BETWEEN HER “FACTS” AND THE TRUTH. LLM]
International law mandates that they must be removed and that the Palestinians should be compensated for their losses.
By Sarah Leah Whitson
June 28, 2009
The debate over Israeli settlements in the occupied Palestinian territories is often framed in terms of whether they should be "frozen" or allowed to grow "naturally." But that is akin to asking whether a thief should be allowed merely to keep his ill-gotten gains or steal some more. It misses the most fundamental point: Under international law, all settlements on occupied territory are unlawful. And there is only one remedy: Israel should dismantle them, relocate the settlers within its recognized 1967 borders and compensate Palestinians for the losses the settlements have caused. [OKAY, SO HERE’S THE FALSE BASIS FOR HER ENTIRE SCREED. SHE’S WRONG ON THE LEGAL POINT AND HER ANALOGY IS GROTESQUE. READ ON IF YOU CAN STOMACH YET ANOTHER SOURCE OF WHERE SO MANY PEOPLE GET SO MUCH INCORRECT INFORMATION. LLM]
Removing the settlements is mandated by the laws of the Geneva Convention, which state that military occupations are to be a temporary state of affairs and prohibit occupying powers from moving their populations into conquered territory. The intent is to foreclose an occupying power from later citing its population as "facts on the ground" to claim the territory, something Israel has done in East Jerusalem and appears to want to do with much of the West Bank. [HOW MANY TIMES CAN PEOPLE STATE AND RESTATE A FALSEHOOD - I SUPPOSE THEY TOOK TO HEART LENIN’S MAXIM THAT IF YOU REPEAT A LIE OFTEN ENOUGH IT BECOMES THE TRUTH. YISRAEL MEDAD, IN THE OPPOSING OPINION PIECE, ALREADY EXPLAINED WHY THE GENEVA CONVENTION DOES NOT APPLY HERE, AND I TRIED TO FURTHER EXPLAIN IT IN MY COMMENTARY TO THAT PIECE. LLM]
The legal principles were reaffirmed in 2004 by the International Court of Justice, which cited a U.N. Security Council statement that the settlements were "a flagrant violation of the Fourth Geneva Convention." The International Committee of the Red Cross and an overwhelming number of institutions concerned with the enforcement of international humanitarian law have concurred in that view. THE QUESTION BEFORE THAT CT CONCERNED ISRAEL’S SECURITY FENCE AND ISRAEL DID NOT PARTICIPATE IN THE KANGAROO COURT BECAUSE THE CT LACKED JURSIDICTION. BUT EVEN ASSUMING THE ICOJ HAD JURISDICTION OVER THE SECURITY FENCE ISSUE, ITS RULING IS BINDING ONLY WITH RESPECT TO THE QUESTION AT HAND AND EVERYTHING ELSE IS DICTA (I.E. NOT BINDING AND DOES NOT SERVE AS PRECEDENT.) LLM]
The economic and social cost of Israeli settlements to the Palestinian population, stemming in part from Israel's need to protect them, are enormous. The 634 (at last count) roadblocks, barriers and checkpoints erected to control the movement of lawful residents of the territory make travel an ordeal. Sometimes even getting to work, school or the home of a relative is impossible for Palestinians. Every day, they must wait in line for hours to show their IDs, and some days they are randomly rerouted, told to go home or, worse, detained for questioning. [FOR DEFINITIVE ANSWERS TO THIS PATHETIC ARGUMENT, SEE EPHRAIM KARSH’S 2002 COMMENTARY ARTICLE: “WHAT OCCUPATION?” IT WILL TELL YOU EVERYTHING YOU NEED TO KNOW TO COMPLETELY EVISCERATE THIS “WOE TO THE POOR PALESTINIANS WHO ARE DESTITUTE BECAUSE OF THE OCCUPATION” CRAP. LLM]
Similarly, the fact that Israel is building 87% of its projected 450-mile "security barrier" on Palestinian territory has less to do with protecting Israel from suicide bombers -- which could have been accomplished by erecting a wall on the Green Line -- than it does with putting 10% of West Bank territory, including most settlers, on the Israeli side. And while Israeli troops protect the settlers from armed Palestinian groups, there is little protection for Palestinians from the settlers' marauding militias and gangs, which have terrorized the local population, destroying their crops, uprooting their trees and throwing stones at their houses and schools. [IT IS NOT THEIR TERRITORY, IT NEVER WAS THEIR TERRITORY AND AT BEST IT IS DISPUTED LAND BUT ONLY BECAUSE ISRAEL NEVER ANNEXED IT AFTER SHE GAINED CONTROL OVER IT DUE TO A WAR IN WHICH ISRAEL WAS NOT THE AGGRESSOR AND AGAINST A COUNTRY (JORDAN) THAT DID NOT HAVE LEGAL SOVEREIGNTY OVER IT ANYWAY. LLM][AH, YES, IT IS THE SETTLERS WHO ARE THE TERRORISTS AND NOT THE PEOPLE WHO BLOW UP PEOPLE ON BUSES AND WHO POINT THE MUZZLE OF THEIR GUNS TO THE HEADS OF SLEEPING 7 MONTH OLD BABIES AND THEN PULL THE TRIGGER, OR WHO MOW DOWN YOUNG BOYS STUDYING, ETC. ETC. THIS WOMAN IS DERANGED, JUST LIKE SO MANY OF HER KIND. THE SETTLEMENT MILITIAS ARE ENTIRELY STATIONED WITHIN THE “SETTLEMENTS” AND ARE ENTIRELY DEFENSIVE. I DARE HER TO GIVE ONE EXAMPLE OF ANYTHING TO THE CONTRARY. LLM]
Too little attention is given to the pervasive system of government-sponsored discrimination against Palestinians in the West Bank and East Jerusalem, where Israel has constructed roads exclusively for settlers and established vastly unequal access to water, fuel, education, healthcare, transportation, infrastructure and virtually every other social service. Israeli authorities readily grant settlers building permits that they deny to Palestinians, whose "illegal" homes they often demolish at short notice. [THIS IS ENTIRELY MADE UP. ALL CITIZENS HAVE THE SAME ACCESS TO SERVICES, AND ISRAELIS ARE DENIED HOUSING PERMITS ALL THE TIME AND THE “PALESTINIANS” BUILD ILLEGAL HOMES ALL THE TIME. LLM] [ALSO, MANY ARAB ISRAELIS REFUSE TO VOTE IN ISRAELI ELECTIONS BECAUSE THAT WOULD BE ACKNOWLEDGING ISRAEL’S EXISTENCE AND AS A CONSEQUENCE THEIR VOICE IS DIMINISHED WHEN POLITICIANS TAKE CARE OF THEIR CONSTITUENTS - THAT IS THE SAME ALL OVER THE WORLD. LLM] The glaring discrepancy in Israel's treatment of two populations living on the same land has taken a significant moral toll on Israel, as well as a political one, with wide coverage of humiliation and abuse at the hands of its security forces. [THOSE ROADS ARE FOR ISRAELIS, NOT JUST JEWS AND NOT JUST “SETTLERS.” THE ONLY ONES FOR WHOM THEY ARE NOT AVAILABLE ARE TERRORISTS OR POTENTIAL TERRORIST-ENABLERS. THIS HAS BEEN REPUDIATED OVER AND OVER AGAIN, EVEN BY THE EDITOR OF HAARETZ WHICH IS WHERE THE LIE BEGAN - I PERSONALLY INTERVIEWED THAT EDITOR AND HE ADMITTED IT WAS FALSE DESPITE HIS PAPER RUNNING THE LIE REPEATEDLY. LLM]
The common refrain of Israeli and even American politicians who recognize that the settlements must go is that it would be politically difficult to dismantle them, in part because it would stir the ire of the settlers and their supporters, an important voting bloc in Israel. Instead, politicians argue that settlements must be a part of future negotiations and a possible land swap. [THE PEOPLE WHO “RECOGNIZE” THE “SETTLEMENTS” MUST GO ARE THOSE WHO ARE PROMOTING APARTHEID. HOW DARE THEY SAY THERE ARE AREAS WHERE JEWS AREN’T ALLOWED TO LIVE? AND HOW DARE SHE SAY THAT IT IS POLITICAL BLACKMAIL BY THE "SETTLERS" THAT PREVENTS WHAT SHE SAYS IS THE RIGHT THING TO HAPPEN - IT IS POLITICAL COWARDICE, EVEN WORSE, BY THOSE WHO PROMOTE THIS IDIOTIC ARGUMENT OF SETTLEMENT DISMANTLEMENT. LLM]
But this only serves as further incentive to expand settlements and makes a political resolution even more difficult. It also condones in the interim Israel's continuing human rights abuses in the name of settler security, leaving respect for Palestinians' rights a second-tier consideration that must await the conclusion of peace talks that have already gone on for decades. [JUST SHUT UP. LLM]
Israel has a duty to protect its citizens, but not in a way that violates the rights of Palestinians. The lawful, rights-respecting way to protect the security of settlers is to move them back to Israel. That should be the starting point of any discussion on settlements. [NAH, LET’S HAVE TRUTH AS THE STARTING POINT. BUT THEN THIS OPINION PIECE WOULD BE EMPTY. LLM]
Sarah Leah Whitson is Middle East director at Human Rights Watch. She’s also full of shit.
BY THE WAY - THERE IS A SEPARATE VOTE HERE ABOUT WHETHER TO DISMANTLE THE SETTLEMENTS, SO VOTE THERE ALSO. NOT SURPRISINGLY, THE VOTE IS VERY LOPSIDED FAVORING DISMANTLING THE “SETTLEMENTS” BY THOSE WHO READ WHITSON’S LIES, SO YOUR VOTE IS NEEDED.