Sunday, April 11, 2010

Illegal Palestinians to be deported from the West Bank

This is, in a sense, the news before the news although it has in fact been taken from today's 'Haaretz'. Amira Hass writes; "A new military order aimed at preventing infiltration will come into force this week, enabling the deportation of tens of thousands of Palestinians from the West Bank, or their indictment on charges carrying prison terms of up to seven years."

It is an ambiguous order and and how and when it will be applied is open to interpretaton. However, when i say "open to interpretation" I mean, how IDF commanders in the field  interpretate it and what the order does do is it puts Palestinians born in Gaza, their West Bank-born children, those born in the West Bank or abroad who for various reasons lost their residency status and foreign-born spouses of Palestinians, under the jurisdiction of the Israeli military rather than the civil courts. It is, of course, illegal, it is not only contrary to international law but also to Israeli law and it is also another incident in the disgustingly immoral story of an ethnic cleansing. 

No need to adopt a "wait and see" on this one as  not only do Ms Hass's "predicitons" have a habit of proving correct but we can also read in today's 'Haaretz', that the "IDF is ready to implement the order, which is not intended to apply to Israelis, but to illegal sojourners in Judea and Samaria." Yes, the world turned upside down and it is not the settlers who are illegal but the "sojourners" and the West Bank is not the West Bank but Judea and Samaria.

Finally, less than an hour ago, the 'Guardian' published a report under the heading "Israeli groups fight orders allowing army to jail West Bank residents" and it would appear that a handful of human rights groups, including "Ha-Moked", "B'Tselem", "the Association for Civil Rights in Israel", and "Rabbis for Human Rights" might provide the most serious resistance with Saeb Erekat, the chief Palestinian negotiator, more or less, contenting himself with saying "Israel's endgame is not peace. It is the colonisation of the West Bank." Yes, not only should we not expect too much pressure from the international community on this issue, but it would also appear that the PA is in the process, once again, of revealing just how hopeless it really is.

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