The situation in Palestine continues to descend into further chaos. This must delight the Israelis and Americans no end. Less time and energy to fight the occupation. This news, therefore, should come as no surprise:
The highest ranking UN official in Israel has warned that American pressure has “pummelled into submission” the UN’s role as an impartial Middle East negotiator in a damning confidential report.The 53-page “End of Mission Report” by Alvaro de Soto, the UN’s Middle East envoy, obtained by the Guardian, presents a devastating account of failed diplomacy and condemns the sweeping boycott of the Palestinian government. It is dated May 5 this year, just before Mr de Soto stepped down.
The revelations from inside the UN come after another day of escalating violence in Gaza, when at least 26 Palestinians were killed after Hamas fighters launched a major assault. Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, head of the rival Fatah group, warned he was facing an attempted coup.
Mr de Soto condemns Israel for setting unachievable preconditions for talks and the Palestinians for their violence. Western-led peace negotiations have become largely irrelevant, he says.
Mr de Soto is a Peruvian diplomat who worked for the UN for 25 years in El Salvador, Cyprus and Western Sahara. He says:
· The international boycott of the Palestinians, introduced after Hamas won elections last year, was “at best extremely short-sighted” and had “devastating consequences” for the Palestinian people
· Israel has adopted an “essentially rejectionist” stance towards the Palestinians
· The Quartet of Middle East negotiators – the US, the EU, Russia and the UN – has become a “side-show”
·The Palestinian record of stopping violence against Israel is “patchy at best, reprehensible at worst”
Meanwhile, justified anger towards Opray Winfrey, about to arrive in Israel to express solidarity with the oppressed Isrealis:
Oprah Winfrey has been criticized for supporting Israel.
The Joint Advocacy Initiative, a partnership between the east Jerusalem YMCA and the YWCA of Palestine, said in a June 8 letter that Winfrey’s willingness to visit Israel was “very shocking” considering her image as someone who “stands with oppressed, marginalized people, fights racism, and works for justice and human rights.”
The letter was apparently a response to the talk show host’s declaration last month that she sympathized with the suffering of Israelis and would accept an invitation from Elie Wiesel to visit the Jewish state.
Calling Israel’s policies a violation of international law, the JAI invited Winfrey to visit the Palestinian territories and “witness firsthand the refugee camps, Apartheid Wall, movement restrictions and ghettos.”
Those poor Jewish settlers in the West Bank. So much water, greenery and resources, and so few to share them with. Oprey was invited by Wiesel, a man experienced at promoting the Holocaust for political gain, but at least she could better understand the propaganda value of her travels.