Holy Land, Whole Land

Posted on Sep 6, 2018

September 6, 2018 – An area once called the “Holy Land” and sacred to Jews, Christians and Muslims has now become “the Whole Land” from the Mediterranean to the Jordan, whose peoples, Jews, Christians and Muslims are now subject to the civil or military laws of the State of Israel. This State is now defined as a state for Jews all over the world, with only Jews having a right to self-determination therein. Only citizens of Israel have varying democratic rights and responsibilities; the other half of the population of this “Whole Land”, the Palestinians, have but one “responsibility” – to conform to the laws, restrictions and restraints of their Israeli lawmakers and enforcers. Some commentators call this apartheid; some call this imprisonment; others call it bondage. Not all Israelis and most of the people of other states of the world are supportive of this arrangement; they continue to call for some sort of two States or one State/one vote for all, or a federation of Israel, Palestine and Jordan including Jews, Muslims and Christians. Only the present governments of Israel and the U.S. support “whole land” State of Israel. Leaders of governments come and go; the people remain. Justice remains; new formulations of laws come and go.

The five featured articles and the related links in this issue of the Middle East Notes focus on a recommended Washington Report on Middle East Affairs article featuring the Palestinian refusal to surrender their rights to Israel; Trump’s unpublished peace plan, and strategy in cutting all funding to UNRWA; implications of Israel’s Nation-State Law for all Palestinians, especially those with Israel citizenship; casualties from the continuing March of Return;  and links to recent CMEP Bulletins.

Please note: Opinions expressed in the following articles do not necessarily reflect the opinion of the Maryknoll Office for Global Concerns.
  • Dr. M. Reza Behnam provides an excellent summary in the Washington Report on Middle East Affairs of Palestinian refusal to surrender their rights to Israel concerning the occupied territories, Jerusalem, and citizenship for Palestinians living in the State of Israel.
  • Jack Khoury writes in Haaretz that the U.S. announcement that it is cutting all funding to the UN Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA) for Palestine refugees proves that Trump’s goal of this strategy, in line with Netanyahu’s, is to decimate the Palestinian national movement. 
  • Kamal Hawwash states in the Middle East Monitor that Israel’s Nation-State Law, celebrated by many Jewish Israelis, is deeply worrying to Palestinian Israelis. Already, after just one month, violence, threats of violence, and discriminatory policies are in high gear – this after decades of unrestrained injustice. 
  • Evan Gottesman writes in the Israel Policy Exchange that the greatest risk of a one-state outcome to the Palestinian conflict comes from the Israeli government with its proposals to annex the West Bank without regard for democracy or the national aspirations of the territory’s residents.
  • The Palestinian Ministry of Health in Gaza released a report on August 10 which stated that Israeli forces shot and killed a total of 167 Palestinians and injured over 18,000 others since the start of “The Great March of Return” protests on March 30th. The number of killed and wounded has continued to grow at subsequent August protests. 
  • Churches for Middle East peace (CMEP) Bulletins

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