Last week we got a rather explicit perspective on what exactly is the driving ideological and political force driving Israeli policies of territory and statehood with Palestinians through the deputy speaker of the Israeli Knesset who unabashedly rejected the notion that Palestinians have any right to a state or to equal rights.
Unabashed is also the word used in this State Department diplomatic cable from the US Embassy in Tel Aviv to describe the Israeli right-wing’s intentions for grabbing more land and for establishing separate but ‘equal’ systems of segregation between Jews and Arabs.
Right-wing Yisrael Beiteinu party leader Avigdor Lieberman told the Ambassador January 31 that separation of Israeli Jews from Israeli Arabs is necessary in order to promote Israeli security and maintain Israel’s Jewish identity.
…Lieberman underlined his view that to avoid conflict, a separation of Israeli Jews from Israeli Arabs must occur. He said his proposal for such a separation is based on the Cyprus model, where, he said, the island’s Turks are separated territorially from the island’s Greeks. Lieberman said that the roadmap makes a mistake by advocating a two-state solution, wherein Israel retains two peoples within its borders, Jewish and Arab, while the Palestinian state retains only Palestinians.
…Asked about the status of Israeli Arabs living throughout Israel and in mixed cities, Lieberman acknowledged that this is “more complicated.” He advocated that all Israelis be required to take a loyalty oath, and that those who refuse be stripped of their citizenship.
A cable describes institutionalised discrimination and the denial of public services to its own Bedouin citizens. Despite their citizenship and the fact that Bedouins “continue to serve voluntarily in the IDF and otherwise support the state, media commentators and Israeli politicians often refer to the threat of a second ’intifada’ coming from the Negev Bedouin.” The 70’000 Bedouins of the Negev community have never been included in GOI land planning, do not qualify for provision of any public services, and therefore do not officially exist on Israeli maps. Many Bedouin are life-long residents of these communities, but are considered squatters by the government. Without legal status, these communities receive no government resources, including municipal services and infrastructure development. The cable describes squalor and poverty of one of the villages under the heading “Is this Israel?”. The Government of Israel decided to forcibly relocate Bedouin communities in order to create a ’buffer zone’ around an airbase because they feared Bedouins may acquire anti-aircraft missiles for use against Israeli aircraft, or to prevent vandalism and theft.
Meanwhile, the US, with unbridled support for Israel, is doing everything in its power to prevent Palestinians from gaining UN recognition for statehood next month.