Now and then

Every now and then, the Australian media honestly investigates the reality of life for Palestinians under Israeli occupation. Take ABC Radio AM on Tuesday:

Palestinian farmers are accusing Israel of throwing them off their land in a bid to annex the Jordan Valley in the West Bank.

Their claims have been backed up by an Israeli human rights group, which says it has proof that the Israeli Army is quietly implementing new controls on Palestinian residency and movement.

AM has spoken to Palestinian residents of the Jordan Valley, who say they’ve been taken by soldiers in the middle of the night and dumped at Israeli checkpoints at the edge of the valley.

Meanwhile, the US proves its dedication to democracy in the Middle East:

US officials are exerting pressure on moderate Palestinian politicians not to serve in a Hamas-led government and have warned that Washington would sever existing contacts with them if they did.

Astoundingly, this includes Mustafa Barghouti, leader of the Palestine National Initiative and human rights defender. If the US and Israel truly believe that isolating Hamas will contribute to a more peaceful region, they are deluded. It will backfire in ways that are unpredictable and dangerous. Watching the US navigate the Middle East is akin to a blind man asking everybody for help while actually being able to see. Failure is likely, and welcome.

Text and images ©2023 Antony Loewenstein. All rights reserved.

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