The New Year: Let’s see an end to Stephen Harper’s love-in with Israel

Moving one’s own population into occupied territories is contrary to International law; Article 49 of Fourth Geneva Convention (adopted in 1949 and now part of customary international law) prohibits mass movement of people out of or into occupied territory under ‘belligerent military occupation’.   (Wikipedia).

“More than 500,000 Israeli civilians live in Israeli settlements in the West Bank, including in East Jerusalem, built in contravention of international law (4th Geneva Convention, Article 49). In this year alone, at least 755 Palestinians had been forcibly displaced due to demolitions, and 127 due to settler violence – some 40% of these were Bedouin.”

“Because of the [military] closures and the settlements, we are living in a jail which gets smaller every year.”

“…Israel routinely demolishes Palestinian homes on the pretext that they are built ‘without permits.’  Israel rarely grants such permits to Palestinians to build on their own land… Meanwhile, as part of its colonization policy, Israel routinely grants retroactive permission for Jewish-only settlements built on occupied land in violation of international law.”

All of the above quotations are taken from posts to be found in my ‘Israel / Middle East’ category, link below.

If there is one thing I would like to see in the New Year, it is for Prime Minister Harper to catch on to the fact that Israel is a vicious, aggressive state that routinely commits war crimes in the Occupied Territories as casually as the rest of us eat breakfast.  It is high time for him to stop enabling and supporting Israel by sucking up to the Jewish lobby and telling us he wants to be the Zionist entity’s “best friend”.

But then again, I think he knows that already…

Jeff Goodall.

In West Bank, Israel’s rule is that of the jungle

Haaretz Editorial
January 1st, 2012

In the hands of this government, which mainly involve moving buildings built on private lands to ‘state lands’, have become instruments to deepen the occupation and obstruct the two-state solution.

In the diplomatic arena, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has excelled mainly at stagnation; in contrast, he has shown excessive creativity when it comes to nurturing the settlements. Every time the judicial system has ordered the removal of an illegal outpost, including those erected on private Palestinian lands, a magical solution has been found to breach the court order.

Over the years, successive Israeli governments have retroactively approved dozens of illegal settlements, many of which were established with its blessing and public money. In cases where the High Court of Justice ordered the evacuation of an outpost built on stolen land, the State Prosecutor’s Office pledged to carry out the order. But at the end of last week, the government took another step down the slippery slope of the rule of law related to the land of settlements: Minister Benny Begin pledged to retroactively authorize the outpost of Ramat Gilad, which was established without official approval or involvement of the government.

According to the agreement, which was struck in the shadow of threats by the settlers and their representatives in the Knesset and the government, nine prefabricated buildings built on private land will be moved a few dozen meters, from the hill on which the outpost now stands to “state lands.” The legal status of two other structures is to be looked into. As a reward for agreeing not to attack soldiers who were to have evacuated the residents of Ramat Gilad, the state will legalize the rest of the buildings in the outpost, which was established without the approval of the defense minister and without building permits.

In the hands of this government, solutions in the same vein as that offered to Ramat Gilad, which mainly involve moving buildings built on private lands to “state lands,” have become instruments to deepen the occupation and obstruct the two-state solution.

Israel is the only country in the world that recognizes the right of its citizens to settle over the Green Line. Based on Ottoman law, Israel has over the years expropriated about a million dunams (250,000 acres) by defining them as “state lands,” in order to establish Jewish settlements on them. Defense Minister Ehud Barak has likened Israel to a “villa in the jungle.” Nothing is closer to the law of the jungle than a system of distorted laws and procedures that make it possible to build villa neighborhoods in the settlements and legalize wildcat outposts like Ramat Gilad.

See original here.

See “Stephen Harper’s twisted views on Israel” (March 18th, 2011) here.

See the ‘Israel / Middle East’ category here.

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