, 37 tweets, 10 min read
Here at #JSt2019 listening to Frank Lowenstein share a presentation about how much more dire the situation in the ground has become since for the prospect of territorial negotiations since Trump assumed office since newyorker.com/news/news-desk…
Frank breaks down the territorial implications of the “intermin agreement” known as Oslo. Areas A and B, the Palestinain population centers were transferred to Palestinian autonomy while 60% of WB has remained in Israeli control. Since, Israel has consolidated control of Area C.
This is a de facto annexation. Area C was meant to be transitioned to the Palestinians. But they are barely allowed to use it. They cannot drive over it without permits. They cannot build without permits they never get: they are subject to demolitions.
95,000 settlers live east of the separation barrier. Today there are approx 448,000 settlers in the West Bank. Israel took 10% of WB and put a hard separation barrier. The thinking is that you can with land swaps get 80% of settlers in place.
In areas A and B you have 2.98 million Palestinians in Areas A and B.
What’s happening in the West Bank? Israelis are building #settlements. Settlements are it is worth recalling illegal under international law.
On the word occupation. On Capitol Hill, barely anyone utters the word occupation. But in our negotiations with Israelis we were overtly negotiating an end to the occupation.
There are two different elements of the settlement movement: 1) state owned and supported 2) illegal outposts. Since @realDonaldTrump took office there have been ~14,000 settlement units approved which was three times the number under Obama. And where are they?
They’re located deep in the West Bank and in some of the most hard core and deeply ideological places in the West Bank, like Shiloh.
This project has been on the order of hundreds of millions of dollars per year on an annualized basis. It has seen a 40% uptick since Trump.
Under Trump there has been a dramatic increase with zero US pushback.
What does the process of settlement outposts to major permanent residential areas look like? Improvised structure —> basic infrastructure —> permanent.
What this is is a free for all, where settlers are allowed by the state to build essentially what is a colony in the West Bank. #jstreet19
We talk about getting parties back to the negotiating table, but this is what is happening on the ground as we speak. There is no status quo. #jstreet19.
The other side of de facto annexation is demolition of Palestinian homes and structures. The map of pending demolition of Palestinain structures comprises almost every Palestinain structure in Area C. If there is no permit, it’s subject to demolition. They do not receive permits.
The other side of the coin is illegal outposts, which are illegal under Israeli law and almost never demolished by the @idf.
Economic activity in the West Bank: Israel is extracting bullions of dollars per year from the West Bank (Jerusalem stone from West Bank quarries, water for irrigation, most arable farmland for wineries and agriculture).
The overall outlook: effective Israeli control comprises today 90% of the land between Jordan River and Mediterranean. 5% Gaza 5% Areas A and B. It’s effectively one state.
On the term occupation. This is not a contested point. It is a military occupation as defined by international law. It is subject to the laws of belligerent occupation.
Areas A and B is really 169 distinct Palestinian islands lacking geographic continuity separated by checkpoints and by areas under Israeli control (Area C).
There are two different systems that operate in this territory: one for settlers and one for Palestinians. You can call this whatever you want but it is inarguably two different systems. Two separate road systems — you can guess which ones are nicer. #jstreet19
The other separate system is legal systems. Palestinians are subject to Israeli military law. This means they are winding up in jail. Settlers are almost never subject to criminal prosecution under Israeli military law; almost always civil law. Therefore no enforcement of law.
There are no @israelpolice there and therefore no enforcement of Israeli civil law, and no prosecution of for example price tag / settlers violence except for really exceptional cases.
What is the Trump Bibi strategy, if the intention is a permanent one state reality? Redefine the deeply unjust status quo as “peace.”
Between 2009 (Bar Ilan) and 2019, @netanyahu has gone from reluctantly endorsing some idea of two states to talking about applying Israeli sovereignty over the West Bank. But there is no need to formally announce this—Israel has already effectively killed a two state solution.
John Allen was talking about a Jordan RIVER buffer zone. Bibi is talking about annexing ALL of the Jordan River Valley. Add that to all of settlements, that is near total Israeli annexation of Area C.
He sees a unique opportunity in the Trump administration, and came within a few votes in @KnessetIL of official annexation. The furthers right segment of the settler movement is fully in control of Israeli policy.
Another strategy of the Trump administration has been linguistic battle. Trump administration officials have redefined terms:
.@USAmbIsrael and @jdgreenblatt45 has redefined the status quo as peace. West Bank = Judaea and Samaria. Israeli settlements = Israeli communities. Occupied territory = disputed territory. And they’ve greenlighted annexation.
They’ve also cut off all funding for UNRWA to “redefine” Palestinian refugees out of existence under the logic of ending the “cycle of victimization.”
The international community is subsidizing the occupation. But if we don’t pay for it, the Israelis will have to. This logic is to put “maximal pressure” on the Palestinians to accept deeply unfavorable terms (i.e. surrender.)
All @StateDept cables coming from Jerusalem are now approved by highly partisan @USAmbIsrael Friedman who is making sure that story from the West Bank is that “everything’s great! Nothing to see here!”
One day the PA will collapse and responsibility will devolve onto Israel to administer the territories in full as before Oslo. But there is no plan for this. It’s just responsiveness to the domination of the far right over Israeli politics — it’s political not strategic.
Frank addressed the fiscal crisis over standoff re: payment to families of “terrorist” which Frank says includes many children who have thrown stones. PA needs to support these families to prevent destitution and unrest. Mainly tho, Palestinians are facing despair.
Final sentence: quoting notorious lefty @LindseyGrahamSC.
.@threadreaderapp unroll me please!
On politics of Israel, @netanyahu threw his lot in fully with @realDonaldTrump and the @gop and in addition to the political advocacy of groups like @jstreetdotorg, #progressive candidates are far more willing to say things openly that would be unimaginable just a few years ago.
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