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WCJ Comments on President Bush's Speech on Resolving the Middle East Conflict - June 24, 2002
Publication date: 2002-07-01

On the 24th of June 2002 G.W. Bush delivered a speech on resolving the Middle East Conflict.

Below follow comments of the World Court of Justice on the speech by G.W. Bush.

WCJ Comments on President Bush's Speech on Resolving the Middle East Conflict - June 24, 2002
No.G.W. Bush's SpeechComment
1aFor too long, the citizens of the Middle East have lived in the midst of death and fear.There are three main reasons for the death and fear in the Middle East:
  1. the expulsion by the Israelis of some Palestinians from their land in 1948,
  2. the occupation by the Israelis of the West Bank, Gaza, the Golan Heights and South Lebanon in 1967, and
  3. the present Israeli attacks on the Palestinians.
All the above happened with the active support of the US government.
bThe hatred of a few holds the hopes of many hostage.The reasons that the conflict continues are (1) the unwillingness of the present Israeli government to remove the three causes of the conflict, and (2) the continued support and encouragement of the Israeli occupation by the US government.
cThe forces of extremism and terror are attempting to kill progress and peace by killing the innocent.G.W. Bush does not state clearly, who these forces are.

Are they the Israelis killing the innocent Palestinians, or are they the Palestinians killing the Israelis in retaliation?

Both of them kill innocent people.

But the peace is killed by (1) the desire of the Israeli extremists to expand and prolong the Israeli presence on the Palestinian territories by using the G.W. Bush's fallacious doctrine of "War on Terror", and (2) the support of this policy by the American government.

dAnd this casts a dark shadow over an entire region. This is true.
eFor the sake of all humanity, things must change in the Middle East.This was supposed to be the purpose of G.W Bush's speech.
2aIt is untenable for Israeli citizens to live in terror.The terror in which the Israeli citizens live is caused by the unwillingness of the Israeli government to resolve the conflict on the basis of justice.

It would be unrealistic to expect that Palestinians whose property had been taken away from them, whose land is continued to be occupied, whose properties are destroyed and people are killed, maimed or imprisoned, would not retaliate in a violent way, there being no other way available to them to defend themselves.

bIt is untenable for Palestinians to live in squalor and occupation.The squalor and occupation in which the Palestinians live could have been finished a long time ago, had the American government stopped supporting the Israeli occupation and blocking all the UN resolutions aimed to safeguard or vindicate Palestinian rights.
cAnd the current situation offers no prospect that life will improve.Not, unless the Israeli government will want to resolve the conflict on the basis of justice.
dIsraeli citizens will continue to be victimized by terrorists, ...It is natural for people to resist occupation by a foreign power, to seek to recover their land, or to retaliate when being attacked. The Palestinians have right to defend themselves.
e... and so Israel will continue to defend herself.G.W. Bush believes that the right of self-defence is only available to the Israelis, but the Palestinians should humbly submit themselves to any injustice.

Nor are the Israeli military activities limited to self-defence. They are using G.W. Bush's doctrine of "War on Terror" to expand their settlements, and the main party in the Israeli government have expressed a clear intention to keep the occupied territories forever.

3aIn the situation the Palestinian people will grow more and more miserable.This is true.
bMy vision is two states, living side by side in peace and security.The reason, that this is a vision, but not reality, is that G.W. Bush, while talking of two states, has in fact given the Israelis every support and encouragement to continue with their destruction of the Palestinian Authority, full occupation of the Palestinian territories, and a defacto absorption of the Palestine territories by the Israelis.
cThere is simply no way to achieve that peace until all parties fight terror.All the parties are fighting terror now, and in the true sense of that word, not in the sense of the political catch-phrase of "War on Terror".

The Palestinians are fighting the terror of the Israeli attacks, and the Israelis are fighting the terror of the Palestinian resistance, while using the "War on Terror" doctrine to achieve their vision of Greater Israel.

dYet, at this critical moment, if all parties will break with the past and set out on a new path, we can overcome the darkness with the light of hope.This is true, and the new path was the Saudi Plan for Peace. But it was rejected by the Israelis, who preferred the path of war, and the US government have been giving to the Israelis full support in that war.
ePeace requires a new and different Palestinian leadership, so that a Palestinian state can be born.Peace does not require either a new state, nor new Palestinian leadership.

What is required is the acceptance by the Israelis of the Saudi Peace Plan. Once the three causes of the conflict are removed, there will be no reason for Palestinian hostilities towards the Israelis. And, if the Israeli extremists abandoned their dreams about Greater Israel, there will be no reasons for the Israeli hostilities towards the Palestinians.

Once the conflict is resolved, the Palestinian State will begin its peaceful existence. The structure and composition of the Palestinian government will be determined by the Palestinians themselves. But while the struggle against the Israeli occupation and the rights of the Palestinians continues, of necessity the effective government of Palestine will be various resistance movements, regardless of any attempts to impose on the Palestinians an Israel-friendly government.

4aI call on the Palestinian people to elect new leaders, leaders not compromised by terror.There are three main groups of Palestinians today:
  1. those who were expelled from their land in 1948,
  2. those who were born and live on the territories presently occupied by the Israelis,
  3. and those whose parents were expelled from their land in 1948, but who were born on the presently occupied territories, or outside of Palestine.
Their main ambition in life is to liberate Palestine from the Israeli occupation and to vindicate the injustice inflicted upon them by the Israelis.

Because the Palestinians do not have a regular army like the Israelis, the only way of military struggle available to them is what G.W. Bush calls "terrorism" and what the Palestinians call "Liberation Struggle".

Because this Liberation Struggle has been the main social, economic, and political activity of all the Palestinians since 1948 and up to date, all the people, who can have any authority among the Palestinians, will be from among those, who have been involved in the Liberation Struggle, or to use G.W. Bush's language "compromised by terror". A leader who has stayed away from the Palestinian Liberation Struggle will have no followers. It is just as simple as that.

If G.W. Bush wants to resolve the Middle East conflict, he has to understand the motivations behind it.

By trying to squeeze it in into his "War on Terror" doctrine G.W. Bush only deceives himself.

bI call upon them to build a practicing democracy, based on tolerance and liberty.In countries under foreign occupation, the goal of liberation becomes the main goal of all social, economic and political activity.

Even in countries like Britain, the mother of Parliamentary Democracy, in war time, democracy ceases to function and a government of National Unity emerges.

All the Liberation Organisations in Palestine have popular support. This is why they exist.

The activities of organisations like Hamas and Hizbullah are not limited to resistance, they also provide education and welfare services, and once the Israeli occupation is over, and their resistance activities become no longer necessary, their role will be that of peaceful social organisations playing a constructive role in the life of the Palestinian State.

To expect a practicing democracy in a time of war is unrealistic - for a leading world statesman it is either incompetent or dishonest.

cIf the Palestinian people actively pursue these goals, America and the world will actively support their efforts.If America and "the world", whoever it may be, want to achieve peace in the Middle East, they should seek to remove the three causes of the Middle East conflict. The easiest way to achieve that is to force the Israeli extremists to abandon their dreams of Greater Israel and to accept the Saudi Peace Plan.
dIf the Palestinian people meet these goals, they will be able to reach agreement with Israel ... on security and other arrangements for independence.The present Israeli government does not want an agreement with the Palestinians. They want to get rid of the Palestinians by extermination or expulsion, and to populate all of Palestine by Israeli Jews. The "War on Terror" doctrine offers them opportunity to achieve that.
eIf the Palestinian people meet these goals, they will be able to reach agreement with ... Egypt and Jordan on security and other arrangements for independence.The Palestinians, Egypt, Jordan and all the Arab States have already agreed to implement the Saudi Plan. Even the majority of the Israelis support that plan, because they want peace and security. The only party that is against it is the present Israeli Government, because it is headed by Zionist extremists dreaming about Greater Israel, and because they hope to achieve their dreams with the US government support..
5 And when the Palestinian people have new leaders, new institutions and new security arrangements with their neighbors, the United States of America will support the creation of a Palestinian state whose borders and certain aspects of its sovereignty will be provisional until resolved as part of a final settlement in the Middle East.As long as the three causes of the conflict remain, there will be Palestinians, who will fight for their rights, and the only leaders that will have any real authority over the Palestinians will be those who are seen to lead that fight. On the other hand, if the three causes of the conflict are eliminated, the Palestinian State will automatically come into existence. Whether it will have American blessing or not is immaterial.
6aIn the work ahead, we all have responsibilities.It would have been useful to enumerate these responsibilities point by point, define their purpose, method of implementation and time scales, and allocate them between the parties.
bThe Palestinian people are gifted and capable, and I am confident they can achieve a new birth for their nation.The Palestinian people need help to protect them from the Israeli occupation, not a hypocritical pat on the back by a president who leads the government which finances that occupation.
cA Palestinian state will never be created by terror -- it will be built through reform.The statehood or its absence is not the cause of the present conflict. The Palestinian State has a flag and an anthem, and it has a government elected by its own people. It happens to be occupied by a foreign state. The problem is occupation not statehood.
dAnd reform must be more than cosmetic change, or veiled attempt to preserve the status quo.Because G.W. Bush has created a false doctrine of "War on Terror" and is trying to squeeze the reality into it, he cannot see the obvious facts. His ability to see the facts is also weakened by the need to placate the Israeli Lobby in Washington. This is why he must blame the Palestinians and "fight terrorists".

But the cause of the conflict is neither the structure, nor the composition of the Palestinian Authority. It is the Israeli occupation.

But to acknowledge that would be against the logic of the "War on Terror" doctrine and would displease the Israeli Lobby on whose electoral support G.W. Bush depends.

eTrue reform will require entirely new political and economic institutions, based on democracy, ...The word "democracy" has been heavily used by politicians throughout the world, as something which is "good in itself" and claiming that they themselves are "democratic" while their opponents are not. So there sprang up Popular Democracies, National Democracies, Social Democracies, etc.

The suggestive meaning of the word "democracy" is "government by the people", as opposite to government by a single person or a group of people.

Government, however, is an administrative task which cannot be performed by all the people acting at the same time. It has to be performed by a group of people headed by a single person. So, in practice, democracy means the method of appointing a government by elections in which people take part.

Election of a government by votes only allows for a periodic change of government. It does not guarantee that the elected government will be honest, competent and effective.

G.W. Bush's speech is an irrefutable proof of that fact.

The only way to ensure that a government is honest, competent and effective is to ensure that every person holding a public office is obliged by law, under fear of heavy punishment, to prove that every statement made by him is true, relevant to the matter in hand, logically valid, and, if implemented, is capable of achieving the correct results.

There is no country in the world today where such law is in force. As a result most people in the world depend on government by political demagogues, fumbling from scandal to scandal, while crime and corruption of every kind prevails.

The state of the world today shows that such laws are necessary in every nation for the survival of mankind.

Passing such law in the United States of America will set the world a good example. President Bush has an opportunity to introduce such law.

In Palestine the priority is resolution of the present conflict. This can be achieved without any changes in the Palestinian government.

fTrue reform will require entirely new political and economic institutions, based on ... market economics ... Palestine is not a socialist country, people are free to engage in business and sell their goods on the open market. The open market in Palestine is less regulated than in the USA. The present obstacles to the economic activity of the Palestinians is the Israeli occupation and the enormous (relative to the size of the country) economic damage inflicted on the Palestinian State by the present Israeli military operations. The scale of the devastation caused by the Israelis in Palestine is greater, than in Germany at the end of the Second World War.
gTrue reform will require entirely new political and economic institutions, based on ... action against terrorism."Action against terrorism" is the slogan of G.W. Bush's doctrine of "War on Terror". In the context of the Middle East conflict it means giving the Israeli army free hand to do what they please: to kill, maim, or imprison anyone they choose, to destroy or seize Palestinian property, and to expand and perpetuate their occupation of the Palestinian territories. As long as they continue with these activities, there will be Palestinians who will try to resist and to retaliate.

The Israelis will call this resistance "terrorism" and justify their terror against the Palestinians as "action against terrorism", and G.W. Bush will say, "The Israelis have right to defend themselves".

To please the Arab leaders G.W. Bush will call upon the Israelis from time to time to stop the occupation, but he will do nothing to make sure that the occupation is stopped. Just as he has been doing up to now.

7aToday, the elected Palestinian legislature has no authority, ... It is not clear what "having authority" means in the present context. Palestine is under effective Israeli military rule. The Israelis have given to themselves full and unrestricted "authority" to do what they please. The US government supports this Israeli "authority" in every way, while talking about peace in order to create an illusion of a 'peace process'.
bToday, [in Palestine] ... power is concentrated in the hands of an unaccountable few.How many governments in the world today are truly accountable for the results of their actions?

But in the context of Palestine to talk about Palestinian "power" is meaningless. The real power, military power, is in the hands of the Israelis. And who are the Israelis accountable to?

cA Palestinian state can only serve its citizens with a new constitution which separates the powers of government.This can only happen after the conflict is resolved.
dThe Palestinian parliament should have the full authority of a legislative body.This can be relevant only after the conflict is resolved.
eLocal officials and government ministers need authority of their own and the independence to govern effectively.At present Palestine is "governed" by the Israeli army, with the support and encouragement of the US government.
8aThe United States, along with the European Union and Arab states, will work with Palestinian leaders to create a new constitutional framework, and a working democracy for the Palestinian people.Under the Israeli occupation?
bAnd the United States, along with others in the international community will help the Palestinians organize and monitor fair, multi-party local elections by the end of the year, with national elections to follow.Under the Israeli occupation?
9aToday, the Palestinian people live in economic stagnation, made worse by official corruption.How many governments in the world today are totally free from corruption? Most "democratic" governments struggle from one scandal to another, until they are replaced with another government, who continue to do the same.

Whatever economic life has existed in Palestine has been destroyed by the Israeli Army with the complicity and encouragement of the US government, but G.W. Bush is trying to shift the blame onto the Palestinian administration.

bA Palestinian state will require a vibrant economy, where honest enterprise is encouraged by honest government.Any economic life in Palestine can function properly only once the conflict is resolved.

It is also important not to forget that the present Israeli activities have caused enormous economic damage to the "Palestinian Economy".

If the word "justice" has any meaning today, the Israelis must pay to the Palestinians just compensation for the damage caused.

cThe United States, the international donor community and the World Bank stand ready to work with Palestinians on a major project of economic reform and development.This can be relevant only once the conflict is resolved.
dThe United States, the EU, the World Bank, the International Monetary Fund are willing to oversee reforms in Palestinian finances, encouraging transparency and independent auditing.This can be relevant only once the conflict is resolved.
10aAnd the United States, along with our partners in the developed world, will increase our humanitarian assistance to relieve Palestinian suffering.The Palestinian suffering has been caused by the Israelis with the complicity and encouragement of the US government.

The US humanitarian activities in Palestine are hypocrisy: "Dear children of Jenin, don't mind your houses destroyed, your parents killed, your sisters raped and your brothers crippled for life by the Israelis with our support and encouragement, here's some tinned food and a bag of teddy bears from America with love!" - No wonder that the people of Jenin rejected such offer as an insult.

bToday, the Palestinian people lack effective courts of law and have no means to defend and vindicate their rights.For the past 54 years the Palestinians have been unable either to defend or to vindicate their rights, which have been continuously violated by the Israelis.

At present there is no effective means of defending or vindicating rights of smaller nations violated by the world's "super powers" or by countries supported by the "super powers". The case of the Palestinians is a clear example of that.

Does G.W. Bush propose to change that? And if he does, then when and how?

cA Palestinian state will require a system of reliable justice to punish those who prey on the innocent.Does it mean that the Israeli government will be put on trial for their crimes against the Palestinians?
dThe United States and members of the international community stand ready to work with Palestinian leaders to establish finance ... Under the Israeli occupation?
eThe United States and members of the international community stand ready to work with Palestinian leaders to ... monitor a truly independent judiciary.In how many states of the world today is the judiciary totally independent of any political or ideological influence?

Palestine is in a state of war. When countries are in a state of war, the normal civil law gives way to 'martial law' where the independence of judiciary is sacrificed to the 'military necessity'. It is absurd to talk about independent judiciary while Palestine is under effective Israeli military rule.

In the United States of America civil law and personal liberties are being replaced with various "anti-terror" measures, which violate the accepted standards of justice. The US government is refusing to accept the jurisdiction of the International Criminal Court. And G.W. Bush lectures the Palestinians on judicial independence and rule of law.

11aToday, Palestinian authorities are encouraging ... terrorism. This is unacceptable.What G.W. Bush calls "terrorism", the Palestinians have been calling "Liberation Struggle". No Palestinian organization or institution has any hope of having any support of the Palestinians, unless they are seen to be supporting the struggle against the Israeli occupation. This is a fact, whether one chooses to accept it, or not.
bToday, Palestinian authorities are ... not opposing, terrorism. This is unacceptable.The only way to achieve conditions when it will be possible for a Palestinian authority to oppose the struggle against Israel (or, to use G.W. Bush's language "terrorism") and have any support among the Palestinians at the same time, is to provide possibilities of eliminating the three causes of "terrorism" by non-violent means.

Once it becomes possible to achieve justice for the Palestinians by peaceful means, violence against the Israelis will be no longer justifiable, and the Palestinian authorities will be able to oppose and seek to prevent such violence without loosing the support of the Palestinian people.

cAnd the United States will not support the establishment of a Palestinian state until its leaders engage in a sustained fight against the terrorists ...Once the three causes of "terrorism" are eliminated, terrorism will cease to exist. This will also result in the emergence of a Palestinian State. Whether this or that country will choose to recognise this state is immaterial.

The role that the United States could play in eliminating terror in the Middle East is to force the Israelis to accept the Saudi Plan, because it would eliminate terrorism.

dAnd the United States will not support the establishment of a Palestinian state until its leaders ... dismantle their [terrorist] infrastructure."Dismantling the terrorist infrastructure" is a political catch phrase, which the Israelis are using to describe the destruction by them of Palestinian property, dismantling of the Palestinian Authority, killing, maiming and imprisoning Palestinians as they choose. These Israeli activities have only increased the Palestinian attacks on them.

Palestinian "terrorism" will, however, disappear by itself, once its causes are eliminated.

eThis will require an externally supervised effort to rebuild and reform the Palestinian security services. The security system must have clear lines of authority and accountability and a unified chain of command.G.W. Bush has a vision of the Palestinian security services killing and imprisoning Palestinian "terrorists" (that is the Palestinians fighting against the Israelis). Realistically, such security services cannot be staffed by Palestinians. They will have to be staffed by Israelis or some foreign mercenaries. But the Israeli Army is already playing that role.

On the other hand, once the three causes of terrorism are eliminated, "terrorism" will become redundant and there will be no need for a Palestinian "security system" to protect the Israelis against the Palestinian resistance, which G.W. Bush suggests should be established.

12 America is pursuing this reform along with key regional states. The world is prepared to help, yet ultimately these steps toward statehood depend on the Palestinian people and their leaders. If they energetically take the path of reform, the rewards can come quickly. If Palestinians embrace democracy, confront corruption and firmly reject terror, they can count on American support for the creation of a provisional state of Palestine.G.W. Bush seeks to force the Palestinians to submit to injustice with the help of "key regional states" and "the world". This is totally unrealistic.
13aWith a dedicated effort, this state could rise rapidly, as it comes to terms with Israel ... on practical issues, such as security.This can be only achieved by eliminating the three causes of the conflict.
bWith a dedicated effort, this state could rise rapidly, as it comes to terms with ... Egypt and Jordan on practical issues, such as security.Egypt and Jordan have already agreed to support the Saudi Peace Plan, which, if accepted by the Israelis, would have resolved the conflict. The Israeli government have rejected this plan.
cThe final borders, the capital and other aspects of this state's sovereignty will be negotiated between the parties, as part of a final settlement. Arab states have offered their help in this process, and their help is needed. The only obstacle to this is that the Israelis do not want to resolve these issues. They see the "War on Terror" as an opportunity to move the borders of Israel to the Jordan river as another step towards Greater Israel.
14aI've said in the past that nations are either with us or against us in the war on terror.The "War on Terror" doctrine is the result of the traumatic shock that G.W. Bush had suffered on the 11th of September, 2001. His feelings are understandable: "Thousands of Americans killed ... catch'em and kill'em ... all of them. Every terrorist on earth!". But, this type of reaction is good enough for a football hooligan, not a world statesman. And G.W. Bush is a world statesman, not a soccer hooligan. He has responsibility for the fate of the world.

Of course, it would have been nice, if things were simple. Make a list of all the terrorists in the world, kill them all, and all the terrorism will disappear.

But life is not that simple. There are causes and effects. Existence of causes produces effects.

Terrorism is the result of people who believe that they have suffered an injustice and see no peaceful means of redressing that injustice taking the law in their own hands and trying to redress that injustice by whatever means are available to them.

What G.W. Bush calls "terrorism", Palestinians see as "fight for their lawful rights". As some "terrorists" are killed, other "freedom fighters" replace them. And the more are killed, the more are replaced.

Had the causes of terrorism been removed, terrorism would have become unnecessary and disappeared by itself.

This has been tried many times, and it worked. The last time I heard of Mau-Mau terrorists, once much vilified by the British media, was in a news item couple of years ago, that a British historian had published a book, in which he writes that the "evil" Mau-Mau were not evil, they were just fighting against foreign [British] occupation. Once the British withdrew from Kenya, Mau-Mau terrorism had disappeared, and the former Mau-Mau leaders became members of the Kenyan government, playing peaceful and constructive role in the life of Kenya.

Removing the causes of terrorism, is not as much fun as killing real people, but it works.

Killing real "terrorists" does not work, it creates more "freedom fighters".

bTo be counted on the side of peace, nations must act. Act for peace?

Is G.W. Bush addressing this appeal to himself?

Has he understood that "War on Terror" can bring nothing but war and terror, and decided to seek alternatives?

cEvery leader actually committed to peace will end incitement to violence in official media, and publicly denounce homicide bombings.They have all been doing it, again and again, as if "denouncing terror" is some kind of religious incantation ... an oath of personal allegiance to G.W. Bush.

Denunciations of terrorism, might give to G.W. Bush a feeling of satisfaction, by soothing his ego, so brutally traumatised on the 9/11, but they cannot stop terrorism.

People are used to hypocrisy of politicians. Who cares what politicians say? It's the actions that count.

To stop terrorism one must remove the causes of terror, not keep condemning it, while actively encouraging it by creating more injustice.

dEvery nation actually committed to peace will stop the flow of money, equipment and recruits to terrorist groups seeking the destruction of Israel -- including Hamas, Islamic Jihad, and Hezbollah. Every nation actually committed to peace must block the shipment of Iranian supplies to these groups, and oppose regimes that promote terror, like Iraq. And Syria must choose the right side in the war on terror by closing terrorist camps and expelling terrorist organizations.G.W. Bush believes, that nations have a right to defend themselves. He repeated that Israel has such right many times. The US government has also been supplying the Israeli government with money and weapons, so that the Israelis would continue their war against the Palestinians. Is it so surprising that some nations share G.W. Bush's belief that nations have a right to defend themselves?

Some nations, or just people, believe that the Palestinians have right to defend themselves against the Israelis. So they help the Palestinians in the same way as the US government helps the Israelis.

While G.W. Bush sees Israelis as victims of Palestinian terror, other nations see Palestinians as the victims of the Israeli terror.

Does not G.W. Bush believe in the principle of equality before the law?

15aLeaders who want to be included in the peace process must show by their deeds an undivided support for peace. Is G.W. Bush calling the American support of the Israeli war against the Palestinians "peace process"?

Is he calling the rest of the world to join the United States in its support of the genocidal Israeli war against the Palestinians?

bAnd as we move toward a peaceful solution, Arab states will be expected to build closer ties of diplomacy and commerce with Israel, leading to full normalization of relations between Israel and the entire Arab world. The Arab states have already expressed their willingness to establish normal relations with Israel as per the Saudi Peace Plan. The Israelis have rejected that offer, because they do not want to withdraw to the pre-1967 borders and to resolve the issue of the Palestinian refugees. Has G.W. Bush forgotten about that?
16aIsrael also has a large stake in the success of a democratic Palestine. Permanent occupation threatens Israel's identity and democracy. A stable, peaceful Palestinian state is necessary to achieve the security that Israel longs for.The leadership of the Likud Party in Israel, which is represented by Ariel Sharon in the Israeli government, believe that there is no place for a Palestinian state in Palestine.
bSo I challenge Israel to take concrete steps to support the emergence of a viable, credible Palestinian state.Will the Israelis take more heed of this challenge, than they have taken of the previous calls by G.W. Bush to stop their incursions? What will G.W. Bush do, if they don't? Approve more financial aid to support the Israeli war as he has done in the past?
17aAs we make progress towards security, Israel forces need to withdraw fully to positions they held prior to September 28, 2000.G.W. Bush has not produced any workable plan of how such security can be achieved.
bAnd consistent with the recommendations of the Mitchell Committee, Israeli settlement activity in the occupied territories must stop.The Israeli settlement activity in the occupied territories has not stopped so far, and there is no indication of any intentions by the Israelis to stop such activities. They are actively and vigorously expanding it. They know from the previous experience that G.W. Bush's requests to stop the settlement activities are mere words not intended to produce any practical effect, except making the leaders of the Arab States believe that President Bush is on their side.
18aThe Palestinian economy must be allowed to develop.Under the Israeli occupation?
bAs violence subsides, freedom of movement should be restored, permitting innocent Palestinians to resume work and normal life.Giving the Israeli army total freedom of action, and seeking to suppress all resistance against the Israeli activities by the Palestinians is unlikely to make violence subside.
cPalestinian legislators and officials, humanitarian and international workers, must be allowed to go about the business of building a better future.While the Israeli army are destroying the Palestinian present?
dAnd Israel should release frozen Palestinian revenues into honest, accountable hands.This is totally inconsistent with the present situation on the ground. Under the conditions of Israeli occupation, every penny that gets into Palestinian hands will be honestly and accountably spent on attempts to resist that occupation, not on protecting the Israelis against the Palestinians.

Once the causes of terrorism are removed, this will become possible.

19 I've asked Secretary Powell to work intensively with Middle Eastern and international leaders to realize the vision of a Palestinian state, focusing them on a comprehensive plan to support Palestinian reform and institution-building.G.W. Bush has been sending US envoys to the area before without any positive effect. Why will it be different this time? Is he going to defy his domestic pro-Israel Lobby? Will he abandon his "War on Terror" for a workable way to achieve peace and security in the world?
20aUltimately, Israelis and Palestinians must address the core issues that divide them if there is to be a real peace, resolving all claims and ending the conflict between them.After the Israelis have killed all the male Palestinians of fighting age and exiled the rest of the Palestinians from Palestine?
bThis means that the Israeli occupation that began in 1967 will be ended through a settlement negotiated between the parties, based on U.N. Resolutions 242 and 338, with Israeli withdrawal to secure and recognized borders.This is one of the points of the Saudi Peace Plan. The Saudi Peace Plan has been rejected by the Israelis.
21aWe must also resolve questions concerning Jerusalem, the plight and future of Palestinian refugees, and a final peace between Israel and Lebanon, and Israel and ... Syria.These are points of the Saudi Peace Plan. The Saudi Peace Plan has been rejected by the Israelis.
b... a Syria that supports peace and fights terror.Syria has fully endorsed the Saudi Plan for Peace in the Middle East and they have been supporting the Palestinians in their fight against the Israeli terror.
22aAll who are familiar with the history of the Middle East realize that there may be setbacks in this process.If the Israelis had a sincere desire for peace, peace could have been already a reality.
bTrained and determined killers, as we have seen, want to stop it.According to the The Mitchell Report the breakdown of the previous 'peace process' is attributed to the following events:

In this part of our report, we do not attempt to chronicle all of the events from late September 2000 onward. Rather, we discuss only those that shed light on the underlying causes of violence.

In late September 2000, Israeli, Palestinian, and other officials received reports that Member of the Knesset (now Prime Minister) Ariel Sharon was planning a visit to the Haram al-Sharif/Temple Mount in Jerusalem. Palestinian and U.S. officials urged then Prime Minister Ehud Barak to prohibit the visit. Mr. Barak told us that he believed the visit was intended to be an internal political act directed against him by a political opponent, and he declined to prohibit it.

Mr. Sharon made the visit on September 28 accompanied by over 1,000 Israeli police officers. Although Israelis viewed the visit in an internal political context, Palestinians saw it as highly provocative to them. On the following day, in the same place, a large number of unarmed Palestinian demonstrators and a large Israeli police contingent confronted each other. According to the U.S. Department of State, "Palestinians held large demonstrations and threw stones at police in the vicinity of the Western Wall. Police used rubber-coated metal bullets and live ammunition to disperse the demonstrators, killing 4 persons and injuring about 200." According to the GOI, 14 Israeli policemen were injured.

Similar demonstrations took place over the following several days. Thus began what has become known as the "Al-Aqsa Intifada" (Al-Aqsa being a mosque at the Haram al-Sharif/Temple Mount).

What was the purpose of the visit by Ariel Sharon to the Haram al-Sharif on September 28, which he knew would be provocative?

Was he seeking peace?

Why live ammunition was used by the Israelis to disperse unarmed Palestinian demonstrators?

So who are those trained and determined killers? The Israeli army?

cYet the Egyptian and Jordanian peace treaties with Israel remind us that with determined and responsible leadership progress can come quickly.Does G.W. Bush suggest that the extremist pro-Greater-Israel government of Ariel Sharon should be replaced with a responsible government who will respond positively to the Arab Peace Plan?
23aAs new Palestinian institutions and new leaders emerge, demonstrating real performance on security and reform, I expect Israel to respond and work toward a final status agreement.It is not clear how a change of the composition or structure of the Palestinian leadership can force the Israelis accept the Arab Plan for Peace or remove the causes of the conflict in any other way.
bWith intensive effort by all, this agreement could be reached within three years from now. And I and my country will actively lead toward that goal. If the Israelis are willing to achieve peace, the agreement could be not only reached but fully implemented in 3 to 10 months, depending on the speed with which the Israeli are willing to act.
24 I can understand the deep anger and anguish of the Israeli people. You've lived too long with fear and funerals, having to avoid markets and public transportation, and forced to put armed guards in kindergarten classrooms. The Palestinian Authority has rejected your offer at hand, and trafficked with terrorists. You have a right to a normal life; you have a right to security; and I deeply believe that you need a reformed, responsible Palestinian partner to achieve that security.The insecurity in which the Israelis live today is the direct and inevitable result (1) of the way in which the State of Israel has been created in 1948, (2) of the occupation of the Palestinian territories in 1967 and (3) of the present aggressive war against the Palestinians.

By inflicting injustice upon the Palestinians the Israelis produce the inevitable retaliation and revenge.

The only way to resolve this problem is either to make all of Palestine (including the present State of Israel) a single geographical state, where all the inhabitants will have equal rights regardless of race and religion, and to allow all the Palestinians expelled from Palestine in 1948 to return to that State, or to implement a two states solution as outlined by the Saudi Plan for Peace.

In either case those Palestinians who have suffered an injustice at the hands of the Israelis should also receive a just monetary compensation.

Once a just solution has been implemented, the Israelis will be able to live in peace and security.

The obstacles to the Israeli peace and security are (1) the present irresponsible Israeli government and (2) the support of this government by the US government.

25aI can understand the deep anger and despair of the Palestinian people. For decades you've been treated as pawns in the Middle East conflict.From the start of the conflict in 1948 the Palestinians have been pawns to the power politics of the United States of America, Britain and in some instances of the Soviet Union. It is these "super powers" who armed the Israeli Zionists in their wars against the Palestinians and blocked all the United Nations resolutions aimed at safeguarding the Palestinian rights.
bYour interests have been held hostage to a comprehensive peace agreement that never seems to come, as your lives get worse year by year.The reason that no peace agreement has been reached so far, is that the present Israeli government does not want such agreement. They want to consolidate their conquests and absorb the Palestinian territories. Some Israelis want to achieve it fast by killing or expelling the Palestinians, other favour a more gradual approach, of creating "cantons", isolated Palestinian areas, tightly controlled by the Israeli army, in which the Palestinians will be gradually either exterminated as "terrorists" using the Bush "War on Terror" doctrine, or will leave for other countries, and eventually all the land will become totally owned by the Jews. So far, while G.W. Bush has been talking about his "Two State Vision", in fact the US government has been supporting the genocidal policy of the present Israeli government.
cYou deserve democracy and the rule of law. You deserve an open society and a thriving economy.The Palestinians know it, but at present they see no prospect of achieving that, because of the Israeli occupation and its support by the US government.
dYou deserve a life of hope for your children. An end to occupation and a peaceful democratic Palestinian state may seem distant, but America and our partners throughout the world stand ready to help, help you make them possible as soon as possible.According to G.W. Bush's estimate an agreement can be reached in three years time, subject to creation of the suggested by G.W. Bush "new democratic government". This means that for at least three years the present Israeli government will have total freedom to implement their dream of Greater Israel, i.e. of the genocide of the Palestinian people.
26 If liberty can blossom in the rocky soil of the West Bank and Gaza, it will inspire millions of men and women around the globe who are equally weary of poverty and oppression, equally entitled to the benefits of democratic government.At present the only liberty that is blossoming in the West Bank and Gaza is the unrestricted freedom of the Israeli Army to kill, maim and imprison Palestinians and to seize and destroy their property. This unrestricted liberty of the Israeli Army is financed and encouraged by the US government headed by G.W. Bush.
27aI have a hope for the people of Muslim countries. Your commitments to morality, and learning, and tolerance led to great historical achievements. And those values are alive in the Islamic world today. You have a rich culture, and you share the aspirations of men and women in every culture. Prosperity and freedom and dignity are not just American hopes, or Western hopes. They are universal, human hopes.The morality of G.W. Bush has been clearly demonstrated by his words and deeds throughout his involvement in the Middle East conflict: one standard for the Israelis and another standard for the Palestinians - duplicity and hypocrisy, and total absence of respect for truth and for freedom and justice of others.

The morality of G.W. Bush is clearly summed up by the statement: "who is not with us is against us". This morality is similar to the morality of Adolf Hitler, Joseph Stalin, and of all the other tyrants of human history, who caused death and devastation on a massive scale in the name of extermination of a hated by them group.

Hitler hated the Jews, Stalin hated the capitalists, Bush hates people who fight against oppression by a superior power - the "terrorists".

The politics of Hitler and Stalin had resulted in deaths of millions. The politics of G.W. Bush so far have resulted in deaths of thousands.

But the "War on Terror" is only beginning. If G.W. Bush is not stopped, millions around the world will be sacrificed to his irrational obsession.

bAnd even in the violence and turmoil of the Middle East, America believes those hopes have the power to transform lives and nations.The only hopes that are at present transforming the lives of the Palestinians (often into deaths) are the hopes of the Israeli government that they will have full financial and political support of the US government in their genocidal war against the Palestinian people. This speech of G.W. Bush is a clear confirmation that their hopes have been fulfilled.
28aThis moment is both an opportunity and a test for all parties in the Middle East: an opportunity to lay the foundations for future peace; a test to show who is serious about peace and who is not.A possible test of the seriousness of the parties about peace, would have been for the Palestinians to declare a unilateral cease-fire for 30 days, on condition that within this period the Israelis will stop all their hostilities and incursions and then proceed to implement the Saudi Peace Plan in accordance with a strict schedule. But the actions of the Israelis in the days that followed G.W. Bush's speech leave no doubt that they do not want peace, at least not until they have exterminated or exiled all the Palestinians and taken over all of Palestine.
bThe choice here is stark and simple. The Bible says, "I have set before you life and death; therefore, choose life." The time has arrived for everyone in this conflict to choose peace, and hope, and life.It is clear that the present Israeli government want to achieve peace by exterminating or exiling all the Palestinians and the only hope of the Palestinians living in peace in Palestine is that somebody will come to their rescue and stop the Israelis in their genocidal war. It is also clear that G.W. Bush has no such intentions. G.W. Bush has made his 'stark and simple' choice: life for the Israelis, death for the Palestinians.

But will this 'stark and simple' choice result in peace and security in the new Greater Israel? 1948 has not brought peace. Why will 2002?


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