Are We on the Path to a Global Intifada?
An increasing number of Palestinians and other Arabs believe that the final phase of the original Zionist plan is now being implemented with force and zeal to “purify” the entire Holy Land from any non-Jewish presence! Israeli colonial settlements in the occupied territories (the West Bank and the Gaza Strip – W.B. and G.S.) seem to be meant to make the establishment of a viable independent Palestinian state an impossible task. Erecting the Apartheid Wall with numerous Israeli checkpoints to oppress and humiliate the Palestinian population is seen by many (including some Israelis) as a vicious plan designed to force Palestinians out of their land. Now there are growing fears in several circles that it is only a matter of time when Israel may seize “the right” opportunity of a regional conflict to drive the Palestinians out from the W.B. and G.S. as Israel did in 1948 and 1967.
Many observers conclude that Israel has never felt militarily safe as it feels now which makes “peace” with the Palestinians, the Syrians and the Lebanese look unnecessary. The Israeli arsenal of the most advanced weapons on top of its atomic power has made, since the mid sixties, any classical military confrontation by Arab armies a futile act. This military fact produced two peace treaties with Israel. Many observers believe that the Wall, the ‘coordination’ and/ or “collaboration” between the Israeli and Palestinian Authority (PA) security apparatuses has made it possible for Israel to expand its colonial settlements. The siege of Gaza and the prohibition of Hamas rockets being launched against Israel ensured relative tranquility along this front. Furthermore, the recent congressional win of the conservative right in America has now insulated the Israeli government from any real American pressure. Thus, the Arabs, the Palestinians in particular, have no military option in their hands to enforce a just peaceful settlement. Some may argue with this reality by citing Hezbollah’s example. But this raises a vital question; where there could be a supplier to provide the Palestinians with 50,000 rockets and a Syrian-like border country that can ensure the safe delivery of such an arsenal to help establish the required balance of terror, in this case between the Palestinians and Israel as the current case is between Hezbollah and Israel?
Israel believes that with such facts, it is immune and safe and that its Arab neighbors will never pose a military challenge. But is a military option really absent? The answer is no, for some Islamic and even some secular movements/organizations estimate that weapons of mass destruction could be used because the Palestinian/Israeli conflict is no longer politically feasible to be resolved. To those, the alliance of Jewish fundamentalism with the conservative Christian fundamentalism in the USA has turned this conflict into a religious one ‘to be fought till death’ against one and a half billion Muslims. According to this scenario, weapons of mass destruction would be used against targets like New York City and Washington, and first of all against Tel Aviv. To avert such a bloody scenario, the USA is trying hard, but to no avail, to keep the peace negotiations on track.
If such a scenario is true, the Arabs, particularly the Palestinians, would be left to come up with a strategy that is not based on mere illusions. Dr. George Giacaman, the Director of Muwatin (the Palestinian Institute for the Study of Democracy), said during the 6th annual convention of the Institute that the “the first Intifada was civilian in nature and the second Intifada took up arms; but now we are witnessing the beginning of a third global Intifada, the elements of which were seen in the Turkish ships which tried to break the siege of Gaza, the Goldstone Report and the boycott against Israel by the world of academia…….., because this Intifada had international participation with wars waged on the internet, it created a new struggle similar to that which brought down the apartheid regime in South Africa.” The question is: How to make the third global Intifada mature enough to bring down Israel’s apartheid regime in order to establish a two-state solution? The key lies in the hands of Fateh and Hamas. The conflict between these two major Palestinian factions revolves around the question of who can rule and better serve the Palestinian people. Indeed, Hamas and Fateh can serve and protect the Palestinian people by relinquishing power in Gaza and the West Bank. The Intifada can never reach its global apex level with two Palestinian governments in power while Israel is creating new facts on the ground with absolute immunity. To turn the Intifada into a global action, let the United Nations shoulder its responsibility by meeting its obligations for creating Israel in the first place, with the extreme miseries that came with it. Hamas and PA can serve the Palestinians by handing over their two administrations to the United Nations to run. The occupied territories would thus become an issue to handle between the world community and Israel which would become a state with an Arab majority seeking their civil rights including the right to vote and be represented in the Israeli parliament. In this envisaged global Intifada, the Arab role would be to finance the Palestinian people to maintain daily demonstrations and pay Palestinian laborers their wages to stop working in Israeli enterprises. We will then look to see whether Israel’s apartheid regime will survive the third global non-violent Intifada which we believe is the only way to achieve a two-state solution and a just durable peace in the Middle East.