Another ceasefire

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Eventually, after 11 days of bombardment by Israel, a ceasefire has been announced. In the recent conflict, 232 Palestinians have been martyred. Israel’s security cabinet said it voted unanimously in favor of a mutual and unconditional Gaza ceasefire suggested by mediator Egypt. The development came amid mounting global apprehension about the bloodshed. US President Joe Biden urged Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to seek de-escalation, and mediation bids by Egypt, Qatar, and the United Nations. Egyptian President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi sent two security delegations to Israel and the occupied Palestinian territories to work for upholding the ceasefire. One thing that suddenly comes to mind, what will happen next? Is ceasefire a permanent solution and the answer is no. The current violence was elicited by an Israeli police crackdown on protesters at the Al-Aqsa Mosque compound in occupied East Jerusalem on May 10, resulting in weeks of tensions in the city initiated by the planned enforced removal of numerous Palestinian families from their homes in the Sheikh Jarrah neighborhood. The accords with Israel signed by Egypt in 1978 at Camp David, by the Palestinians in 1993 in Oslo and Jordan in 1994 in Wadi Araba were supposed to be essential steps towards Palestinian autonomy and towards “peace” in the Middle East in general. In 2001, just a year after the Second Intifada exploded, the NGO Forum of the World Conference against Racism (WCAR) was held in Durban, South Africa. It presented a very clear analysis of the nature of the Zionist project and cemented the way for a much more useful but also enlightened path to a new intersectional collaboration between the oppressed Palestinians and other marginalized groups. In a nutshell, all mentioned agreements have assured Israeli control over historic Palestine from the Jordan River to the Mediterranean Sea, a de facto truth shaped by the sturdier colonial party with no negotiation at all. The current situation is certainly the product of international and regional inequities dominant at this specific moment, which is neither stagnant nor eternal, but rather passing and will unavoidably be followed by other moments. The final goal of the Israelis is to assault Palestinians into submission, into giving up any confrontation, any assertion to their own land. Pro-Israel lobby groups in the West like to explain Israel’s Gaza policies as first and primary response to “terror”, and intended at stopping arms smuggling. Unexplained is why Israel almost entirely prevents Palestinians from exporting goods out of Gaza, why the military enforces a “buffer zone”, targeting farmers and fishermen, and why Israel continues to separate Gaza from the West Bank in contravention of their designation as a “Single Territorial Unit”. In other words, the situations facing Palestinians in the Gaza Strip are a measured result of Israeli policies. A comparable logic is at work in the West Bank, where economic advantages in recent years are built on the weak foundations of foreign aid and conditional Israeli concessions. In short, settler colonialism is a type of colonialism that functions through the replacement of an Indigenous population with a settler society that, over time, develops a national identity and claims sovereignty over the colonised land. To attain their goal of becoming completely sovereign over the land they colonised, settlers first expel or remove the majority of the Indigenous population. They then found a system of apartheid, to strengthen their authority over the Indigenous persons who have remained in the colonised territories. Such systems of separation not only safeguard that there is a legal and social hierarchy between the settlers and the Indigenous peoples of the land, but also criminalize the exercise, or even the mere mention, of Indigenous sovereignty. Israel is already increasing its present illegal settlements in the Palestinian Territories and constructing new ones at an extraordinary pace. As settlers oust Palestinians from their homes on a regular basis and ban them from even entering the neighborhoods they once called their own. Israel is emulating the idea of greater Israel rather than working on a peaceful solution.

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