Re: UK PM: Israel is a ‘remarkable country’

British Prime Minister Theresa May celebrated the Balfour Declaration at a dinner held on Wednesday to welcome the Jewish New Year, crediting it for creating the “remarkable country of Israel”, according to Ynet News.

The dinner, held at the British Prime Minister’s official residence at 10 Downing Street, was attended by senior politicians and members of the Jewish community in the UK.

“We look forward to [marking] the centenary of the Balfour Declaration in November,” she opened.

“Born of that letter, the pen of Balfour, and of the efforts of so many people, is a remarkable country.”

May also reinforced her support of the Zionist nation, stating:

As Prime Minister, I am proud to say that I support Israel. And it is absolutely right that we should mark the vital role that Britain played a century ago in helping to create a homeland for the Jewish people.

As the Balfour Declaration surpasses its 100th year, human rights activists have reiterated calls for Britain to acknowledge the role it played in creating the Israeli state and facilitating the ongoing occupation of Palestine.

Last year, the Palestinian Authority called for the UK government to apologise for the declaration, and sought to sue the UK for causing irreparable damage to the Palestinian people. Such calls have been largely ignored by British politicians who have instead reinforced their support of Israel.

Read: Jerusalem delegation to Britain raises plight of Palestinians

Earlier this week, British Cabinet member Sajid Javid announced at the World Jewish Congress that the UK would celebrate the upcoming anniversary with pride.

“Someone said we should apologise for the Declaration, to say it was an error of judgment. Of course that’s not going to happen.”

To apologise for the Balfour Declaration would be to apologise for the existence of Israel and to question its right to exist

he said.

He continued to emphasise the current UK government’s intolerance towards any kind of boycott of Israel and outlined the steps that have been taken to counter peaceful opposition of Israel.

“I’ll be 100 per cent clear. I do not support calls for a boycott, my party does not support calls for a boycott. For all its bluster, the BDS campaign is most notable I think, for its lack of success.”

“As long as I’m in government, as long as I’m in politics, I will do everything in my power to fight back against those who seek to undermine Israel,” he concluded.

The UK has maintained close diplomatic, trade and security ties with Israel since its inception, and is counted upon by Israel to vote in its favour at the UN and other international institutions.

Read: BDS campaign more anti-Semitic than alt-right says Israeli Minister



Source Article from https://www.middleeastmonitor.com/20170915-uk-pm-israel-is-a-remarkable-country/#comment-3527985614

This Is the Country That We Have Left Our Children

CSS Offical-New-Logo2

Police-State-Big-Brother-Prison-Grid-Public-Domain-300x300 (1)

 

police state america2

 

What kind of America are we leaving our children? This can best be summed up in the following: 1984 has arrived complete withe police state surveillance, mayhem and murder. America is well on its way to becoming the most prolific police state in all of history. Here are some examples of the handiwork of police state tactics.

They blow up buildings, kill thousands to achieve political objectives

911, the 24/7 excuse for terrorizing individual civil liberties.

911, the 24/7 excuse for terrorizing individual civil liberties.

 

They murder an ambassador to obscure gun running, drug running and child trafficking in support the funding of terrorists

Covering their tracks in an election year.

Covering their tracks in an election year.

They Murder Ranchers to Get Their Lands

They murder ranchers for objecting to the theft of their land and subsequently their livlihood.

Here lies  Lavoy Finicium, shot down while his hands were in the air,  for daring to object to the theft of their land and subsequently their livelihood.

 

 The Obama protection rackets murders a Supreme Court justice over climate change initiatives.

The Deep State protection rackets murders a Supreme Court justice over climate change initiatives.

 

In America, Warren Buffet and Goldman Sachs don’t pay taxes. Yet, well armed swat teams, from the Department of Education, now kick in doors and mug student loan defaulters and terrorize their young children.

Kenneth Wright, from Stockton, CA., was grabbed by the neck, and drug out on his front lawn before being handcuffed as his three young children were put in a police car as the officers searched his house. Wright was in his underwear and amazingly, the warrant for his estranged wife, not him, and she was not home at the time of the raid. and today, when Obama’s domestic terrorists show up at your door, they have brutalize someone even if the subject of the warrant is not home.

Acting on behalf of the Department of Education, the swat team damaged the house and have refused to properly repair the damage. Wright was held for over six hours before federal officials released him.

The federal government has an extreme motivation to engage in predatory student lending for college tuition. The government is charging exorbitant interest, on a balance of $1 trillion dollars and for this kind of money, they will break your door down and terrorize you and your family. This is life in a police state

Very soon, perhaps, we will be reading that the Department of Education has purchased 2.2 billion rounds of ammunition as well as 2700 armored personnel carriers as we have seen with the DHS.

When will the first college student be murdered by the goon squads sent out to collect on predatory student loans?

They Manufacture Weather to Further Bring Down America

harvey

Resulting from Hurricane Harvey, 1 million cars were destroyed, over 250,000 homes are uninhabitable and dozens died.

Hurricane-Irma-848456

We are still calculating the damage from Hurricane Irmageddon as the storm followed an “unnatural” path to death and destruction. This morning residents of Florida awakened to the smell of raw sewage in many cities as the poor people are existing in the midst of raw sewage.

In Police State America, the REAL Criminals Never Stand Trial

hillary 2020 2

wasserman 1

kissinger useless eaters

All of This Adds Up to Only One Conclusion

fema camp 1

This is the country we are leaving our children


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America’s Meat Free, Organic Fast Food Restaurant Plans To Expand Across The Country







Next Story

A lot of people seem to think that vegans have difficulty eating out, but as someone who’s been eating plant-based for years, I can’t really agree with this statement anymore! Years ago it may have been rare to find vegan options on menus, but they seem to be popping up everywhere now as consumer demand increases.

Although I prefer to prepare my own food, there’s typically a lot of vegan options at restaurants; however, that doesn’t mean they’re healthy. There’s a common misconception that everything that’s labeled as vegan is healthy, which isn’t the case.

Although plant-based diets are proven to be healthier for most people, that doesn’t mean that all vegan food is healthy (after all, Oreos are vegan). Nevertheless, sometimes it’s nice to treat yourself with some decadent vegan food, though there’s still not a lot of mainstream options that are vegan, organic, convenient, and fast.

Can you imagine if there were an all-organic, meat-free fast food chain all over the United States? That would be a game changer! If you didn’t have time to prepare a meal and were in a rush, or you really felt like eating a healthier treat that wasn’t, per se, McDonald’s, an organic drive-thru option would be incredible.

Well, that could be a reality for many Americans in the near future! Amy’s Drive Thru is America’s first vegetarian, organic, gluten-free-optional fast-food restaurant, and it’s based in Rohnert Park, California. But this small restaurant has big dreams: Amy’s is about to expand all throughout California, and hopes to eventually open up drive-thrus all over the United States.

What Is Amy’s Drive Thru?

So, what would going to an organic, meat-free fast food restaurant look like? I can completely understand how this could be difficult to imagine for many people, because this type of fast food certainly challenges the stereotypical McDonald’s meals.

Yes, it’s still a treat; they still offer fried foods and dairy-free milkshakes, neither of which are particularly healthy, but they’re certainly better than what you’d find in a conventional fast food restaurant. Everything is organic, meaning you’re not consuming any pesticides, pharmaceuticals, or genetically modified foods, and is catered toward the vegetarian and more health conscious markets.

Amy’s also challenges the entire business model of regular fast food chains. Fast food was invented to be efficient and low cost, typically only serving Americanized foods. Amy’s would have higher costs given the fact that they source their foods organically and even locally whenever possible, and their meals are often inspired by their employees’ family recipes, challenging the traditional “cheeseburger with fries and ketchup” American fast food meals and giving representation to the diversity that is the American population.

Plus, they employ a lot more people than the average fast food restaurant. A standard fast food chain has an average of 15 employees working at any given location, whereas Amy’s employs 90 people at their restaurant. Their employees are treated pretty well, for that matter, as they’re paid more than minimum wage and receive benefits.

For those of you who get worried about cross-contamination (like myself), not to worry! Amy’s prepares everything that’s vegan, vegetarian, and gluten-free completely separately from one another so there’s no risk.

So, if their costs are higher, does that mean they’re charging more for the meals? Surprisingly, the burgers at Amy’s are priced as low as $3.69 and they charge $4.99 for their burritos, making their prices comparable to those you’d find at a regular fast food restaurant — which isn’t the case in many vegan and vegetarian restaurants, whose prices are typically offered at a premium.

Amy’s burger cost between $3.69 and $5.49:

Here’s a picture of an Amy’s organic, meat-free burrito:

You can read Amy’s entire menu here!

You may be asking yourself, how does this company even make money? If their costs are high and their prices are low, how can they possibly stay afloat? Well, their original goal was only to break even; they didn’t expect this fast food restaurant to necessarily earn big bucks. But, to their surprise, they’ve been extremely successful.

Amy’s food researcher Fred Scarpulla Jr. attributes the company’s success to the increase in demand for plant-based foods as well as the heightened awareness surrounding the dangers of consuming meat.

If you’d like to learn more about how consuming animal products can harm the body, check out the following CE articles:

The Data’s In: How Much Longer You’ll Live If You Stop Eating Red Meat

The Heart Disease Rates of Meat-Eaters Versus Vegetarians & Vegans. The #1 Killer In The US

A Very Informative TEDx Talk Sharing Pure Facts About Eating Meat That Some People Still Don’t Believe

9 Things That Happen When You Stop Eating Meat

Meat: We Don’t Need It, We’re Just Addicted To It

Final Thoughts 

Not only did seeing these photos and reading the story about Amy’s fast food restaurant make my mouth salivate, but it’s also extremely inspiring to see the fast food scene change. Fast food has been plaguing North America for decades, not only because the food is clearly terrible for our health, but because it also does an inarguable disservice to the environment and animals.

Sure, fries will never necessarily be super healthy for our bodies, but organic, GMO-free fries are certainly better than the type of fries you’d find at Burger King. Opening up fast food restaurants like Amy’s is an incredible step in the right direction, and acts as proof that more people are starting to care about their health, the environment, and animal wellbeing!

CE Related Articles:

What 2,000 Calories Or More Looks Like At Almost Every Fast Food Chain

14 Fast Food & Restaurant Employees Confess The One Item You Should Never Order

McDonald’s Serves WHAT In London?! The Outrageous Double Standard In Fast Food

Former McDonald’s Executives Open Sustainable, Healthy & Conscious Fast Food Restaurant

Study Shows Fast Food Burgers Can Contain As Little As 2 % Actual Meat

Did You Know? Many ‘Mystery Ingredients’ in Fast Foods are Often Industrial Chemicals?


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Former Georgian Despot a Man Without a Country

Former Georgian Despot a Man Without a Country



by Stephen Lendman (stephenlendman.org – Home – Stephen Lendman)



In 2003, Washington’s color revolution elevated him to power illegitimately.



Familiar tactics included election rigging, organized street protests, and major media disinformation. Once empowered, neoliberal harshness followed.



State enterprises were privatized. Georgia’s civil service was gutted. Business-friendly tax cuts were enacted. Widespread corruption gamed the system for personal advantage.



Georgia became a ruthless police state. Heavy-handed repression replaced rule of law principles. Legitimate opposition was crushed.



Saakashvili’s tenure included suspicious deaths, disappearances, mass arrests, detentions, torture, loss of civil liberties, mass media control, and allying with Washington’s imperial agenda.



Electorally defeated in October 2013, he allied with US supported  Ukrainian putschists replacing democracy with fascist dictatorship.



Illegitimate US-installed president Poroshenko appointed him a non-staff advisor, then Odessa’s illegitimate governor, ruling by state terror the way he operated in Georgia. 



He left the country in late 2013 a wanted man, charged with corruption and abuse of power. An international warrant was issued for his arrest. 



While empowered, he remained a US favorite. Last July, he resigned as Odessa’s governor, his Ukrainian citizenship revoked after calling Kiev an “oligarchic regime.”



On September 10, stripped of his citizenship, he entered Ukraine, accompanied by opposition leader Yulia Tymoshenko, a former convicted felon.



Ukrainian police opened a criminal investigation on charges of “illegal smuggling of people through Ukraine’s state border (and) attack(ing) border guards during performance of their duties” – absurd charges typical of police state governance.



Saakashvili is stateless. He entered Ukraine to regain his citizenship. He relinquished his Georgian citizenship when appointed Odessa governor in 2015.



A potential Poroshenko rival makes him persona non grata in Ukraine. Now he risks deportation to Georgia where he’s charged with corruption and abuse of power. 



In either country, he could be imprisoned where he belongs.



VISIT MY NEW WEB SITE: stephenlendman.org (Home – Stephen Lendman). Contact at lendmanstephen@sbcglobal.net.



My newest book as editor and contributor is titled “Flashpoint in Ukraine: How the US Drive for Hegemony Risks WW III.”



http://www.claritypress.com/LendmanIII.html



Listen to cutting-edge discussions with distinguished guests on the Progressive Radio News Hour on the Progressive Radio Network.


Source Article from https://www.freedomsphoenix.com/Article/225258-2017-09-12-former-georgian-despot-a-man-without-a-country.htm?EdNo=001&From=RSS

Country star Jo Dee Messina announces cancer diagnosis

Country music superstar Jo Dee Messina has revealed some heartbreaking news to her fans. According to the platinum-selling musical artist, doctors have diagnosed her with cancer and she will begin treatment this fall. As a result, Messina has canceled the remainder of her fall tour, starting on Oct. 7.

Messina released a “personal note” to her fans on her official website. The statement came from Team JDB and read that she wanted her fans to be the first to know about the diagnosis. She assured her fans that her love of God is keeping her strong and feeling blessed. The statement did not give any specific news regarding her treatment and concluded by promising fans they would keep them updated as news comes in.

The statement indicates that the 47 year old is exploring all options when it comes to her treatment. After learning of her cancer diagnosis, Messina worked with her producer Seth Mosley on a new song called “Here.” According to Mosley, it was powerful to see her singing the words “there’s no pain, there’s no fear, here.”

Messina has released six studio albums over her impressive country music career, the most recent being Me in 2014. She has had two Platinum and three Gold albums and has watched nine singles hit number one on the Billboard country music charts over her career.

Source Article from https://m.axs.com/country-star-jo-dee-messina-announces-cancer-diagnosis-122858

Country star Don Williams dies at age 78

Country icon Don Williams died on Friday (Sept. 8) after battling a short illness. He was 78.

The Texas native, known for his pioneering organic country sound, learned guitar as a teenager and soon after formed the trio The Pozo Seco Singers. After seven years with the band, Williams headed to Nashville where he got his feet wet writing songs for a publishing company owned by “cowboy” Jack Clement. He soon after nabbed a record deal with JMI Records, through which he debuted his mellow take on country with his 1973 breakthrough hit “The Shelter of Your Eyes.” He went on to become a radio-regular with a chain of country hits including “Tulsa Time,” “She Never Knew Me,” “It Must Be Love” and “One Good Well.”

The soft-spoken singer became a global superstar and was named Male Vocalist of the Year by the Country Music Association in 1978. 

Within the current decade, Williams made a return to the music scene with albums And So It Goes (2012) and Reflections (2014), both released via Sugar Hill Records. Williams’ final release came in the form of a live CD and DVD recorded in Ireland. After six decades of entertaining, Williams performed his final live show last year. 

“It’s time to hang my hat up and enjoy some quiet time at home,” the 76-year-old said in a statement at the time. “I’m so thankful for my fans, my friends and my family for their everlasting love and support.”

And Williams’ fans, friends and family will forever be thankful for the icon’s everlasting music. Check out some of Williams’ best tunes here

Source Article from https://m.axs.com/country-star-don-williams-dies-at-age-78-122857

Prepper alert: North Korea’s latest nuke test may have advanced the country’s goal of creating grid-busting EMP weapon

Image: Prepper alert: North Korea’s latest nuke test may have advanced the country’s goal of creating grid-busting EMP weapon

(Natural News)
There may be more to North Korea’s latest nuclear test than meets the eye if the country’s state-run media is to be believed, and it has huge implications for preppers.

As reported by the Washington Free Beacon, an official North Korean newspaper published a column allegedly by one of the country’s scientists who claims that the latest underground nuclear test helped to advance Pyongyang’s ability to detonate an EMP weapon in space that would destroy a large portion of an enemy nation’s power grid.

The official communist party newspaper, the Rodong Sinmun, published a report on Monday regarding “the EMP might of nuclear weapons,” in which the writer provided details about how an electromagnetic pulse-producing nuclear weapon could be detonated in space.

“In general, the strong electromagnetic pulse generated from nuclear bomb explosions between 30 kilometers and 100 kilometers [18.6 miles and 62 miles] above the ground can severely impair electronic devices, electric machines, and electromagnetic grids, or destroy electric cables and safety devices,” said the article, which was written by Kim Songwon, dean of Kim Chaek University of Technology in Pyongyang.

“The discovery of the electromagnetic pulse as a source of high yield in the high-altitude nuclear explosion test process has given it recognition as an important strike method,” Kim said, as reported by the Free Beacon.

Discussion of EMP weapons in an official North Korean government media organ will most likely spark further debate in the U.S. and elsewhere regarding the threat, which has previously been outlined by former CIA Director James Woolsey and Dr. Peter V. Pry, who wrote about the devastating after-effects of an EMP blast in a March column published in The Hill.

EMP weapons testing was conducted by the United States and the Soviet Union during the Cold War between 1955 and 1962, with some success. An assessment of those tests, as well as the current threat posed by high-altitude detonations of nuclear weapons, was conducted by Dr. Yousaf Butt, a scientist at the Center for Astrophysics at Harvard University. Now a senior research fellow at National Defense University, he told the Washington Post in January 2016 that while it would be difficult for a rogue state such as North Korea or Iran to pull off an EMP attack, it could be done given the right circumstances.

“I’m not trying to minimize the vulnerability. The vulnerability is there,” he said.

Clearly, the North Koreans are focused on perfecting this capability.

They may already have it, in fact. In a subsequent interview with Breitbart News Radio on SiriusXM last month, Pry told host Aaron Klein that the North Koreans could detonate a nuclear weapon mounted aboard one of two satellites currently orbiting Earth above the U.S.

“We should not be tolerating the North Korean satellites that are orbiting over our country. There are two of them. And the intelligence community is still silent about those,” he said of the KMS 3-2 and KMS-4 earth observation satellites Pyongyang launched in April 2012 and February 2016, respectively.

“The EMP Commission has officially been warning about those satellites especially now that the (intelligence) community admits that North Korea can miniaturize warheads,” Pry told Klein. “Our argument all along has been that they could make weapons small enough to put on those satellites that pass over the United States on the optimum trajectory for an EMP attack on North America.” (Related: North Korea could kill 90% of all Americans by dropping EMP nukes from orbiting satellites.)

He went on to predict that the North would utilize its capability should the U.S. and its regional allies preemptively attack.

Some arms control experts, Forward Observer noted, do not believe countries possess a viable EMP capability, least of all North Korea or even Iran, which is also said to still be pursuing a nuclear weapons capability.

But the U.S. government and power industry experts do, the site pointed out, citing studies and comments made by both.

If you haven’t made preparations to survive a nuclear war and a grid-down scenario, your time may be running out.

J.D. Heyes is a senior writer for NaturalNews.com and NewsTarget.com, as well as editor of The National Sentinel.

Sources include:

FreeBeacon.com

ForwardObserver.com

TheNationalSentinel.com

TheHill.com

<!–

–>

Source Article from http://www.naturalnews.com/2017-09-06-prepper-alert-north-koreas-latest-nuke-test-may-have-advanced-the-countrys-goal-of-creating-grid-busting-emp-weapon.html

Re: Palestine is no country for old men

Millions of us around the world have supported the Palestinian cause for decades. In our calls for justice for the people of Palestine we have stood alongside some political giants. I can’t think of any other piece of land — we are talking about a tiny scrap hardly the size of an African safari park — which has been at the centre of so much political angst, bloodshed and hardship for its people. The creation of the state of Israel in 1948 and its ongoing ethnic cleansing and colonisation of Palestine has seen to that.

The finger of blame for the current Palestinian plight can be pointed in many directions, but the first to carry the can must be Britain. In case you need reminding, this year is the centenary of the infamous Balfour Declaration — in reality, a short letter — which was issued in November 1917. In just a couple of short paragraphs, the British government pledged its support for a “national home for the Jewish people in Palestine”.

Quite how and why a country on another continent could promise a piece of land it didn’t own to a group of people scattered around the world to the detriment of those who lived there is baffling in the extreme. That, though, is exactly what Foreign Secretary Lord Arthur James Balfour did on behalf of “His Majesty’s government”.

#Balfour100

At that point the Arab world should have come together as one in condemnation of such a move but the Arab world, despite once being an entity in its own right, was already fragmenting at the hands of European colonialism which capitalised on a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity by trading on fear, greed and power. Now the Arab world is largely a group of nation states run by self-serving royals and dictators whose only motivation in life is to maintain their iron grip on the wealth and reins of power.

For the past 100 years, Arab rulers have done little or nothing to help the Palestinians. The charismatic and fearless Yasser Arafat, however, did manage to prick their consciences now and again and, at times, the possibility of peace seemed within the grasp of Palestinians under his leadership.

I remember visiting Arafat with an international delegation during his final days in Ramallah. He looked worn and frail, and his complexion was grey. On his table was a gun which he said he would use if the Israelis dared to invade his compound in the occupied West Bank. This wasn’t an idle threat; Israeli tanks were surrounding the building and the late Ariel Sharon, the antithesis of a peacemaker, was threatening to do all sorts, including physically removing Arafat from power. Since Israel has never chosen to be bound by international law — indeed, treats it with open contempt — such threats could not be taken lightly.

Arafat was blamed for being an obstacle to peace, and his Fatah movement and the Palestinian Liberation Organisation were labelled as terrorists or apologists for terrorism. Today, we hear the same old tired Zionist rhetoric but the obstacles to peace are now said to be the Fatah leadership and Hamas. In a few years it will be another bunch of players to blame, and so the cycle will continue unless both the international community and the Palestinian people rise up and cry “Enough!”

#BalfourExplained

Today’s Palestinian leadership in Ramallah is uninspiring; it is in decay and dying, literally. What hope can an ageing, corrupt and untrustworthy group of old men give the Palestinians? The reason we are still talking about Palestine today is because its people are strong, resilient and determined to get justice, and while Western governments and Tel Aviv long ago defanged the Ramallah leadership they cannot crush the ambitions of the Palestinian people.

All the promises made by current President Mahmoud Abbas, such as peace in the West Bank, have not been rewarded one iota. The Israel occupation is still in place and the building of illegal settlements continues unrestrained. You can almost see the tumbleweed rolling through the streets of despair in Ramallah today, which resembles more of a rest home for the elderly than a hotbed of Palestinian nationhood and political activism.

The population of Palestine is the youngest in the region, with a birth rate of over four children to every woman, and with 40 per cent of the population under 14 years old it can be regarded as a youthful nation. Those who are 65 years and above account for less than three per cent of the population, according to the World Population Review. There are bright, young men and women (let’s not forget the Palestinian women for God’s sake) who are more than capable of injecting some life and vitality back into Palestine, its political ambitions and its people. They are the next generation and are more than capable of pushing forward to make their dreams become a reality.

PA reduces medical referrals for Gaza patients by 80%

An injured Palestinian kid receives treatment at Kamal Adwan hospital in Beit Lahia, Gaza on July 30, 2014.

The clear deliverance of justice will come through neither the hands of the West nor the Arab leaders; both maintain the status quo of occupation and misery and are part of the problem not the solution. Abbas can deliver nothing — Benjamin Netanyahu will go to his grave making sure of that — but there is still hope for change.

Palestine needs a leader surrounded by a diverse team who can unite the West Bank and Gaza and stand up to the international community without being bought off by bribes and false promises. Abbas must, if he has any love left for Palestine or its people, step down and take the old guard with him. He is a leader without a mandate; even he must realise that.

Instead of standing up for his people he is punishing them from the West Bank to the Gaza Strip by enforcing brutal sieges and thereby continuing the unjust occupation. He has just one gift left which could redeem him overnight in the eyes of Palestinians everywhere. He could — and should — resign and hand over the leadership to someone who commands respect and will not be bought or bribed by Arab wealth and Zionist influence.

There are many players to blame for the plight of the Palestinians today, who are a people betrayed on all sides. The only hope now will come from political change at the top and a desire from those at the bottom to make sure that their next leadership is progressive, corruption-free, courageous and trustworthy. Palestine is no longer a country for old men. It must embrace the future, and the future is young.



Source Article from https://www.middleeastmonitor.com/20170825-palestine-is-no-country-for-old-men/#comment-3488512897

Re: Palestine is no country for old men

Millions of us around the world have supported the Palestinian cause for decades. In our calls for justice for the people of Palestine we have stood alongside some political giants. I can’t think of any other piece of land — we are talking about a tiny scrap hardly the size of an African safari park — which has been at the centre of so much political angst, bloodshed and hardship for its people. The creation of the state of Israel in 1948 and its ongoing ethnic cleansing and colonisation of Palestine has seen to that.

The finger of blame for the current Palestinian plight can be pointed in many directions, but the first to carry the can must be Britain. In case you need reminding, this year is the centenary of the infamous Balfour Declaration — in reality, a short letter — which was issued in November 1917. In just a couple of short paragraphs, the British government pledged its support for a “national home for the Jewish people in Palestine”.

Quite how and why a country on another continent could promise a piece of land it didn’t own to a group of people scattered around the world to the detriment of those who lived there is baffling in the extreme. That, though, is exactly what Foreign Secretary Lord Arthur James Balfour did on behalf of “His Majesty’s government”.

#Balfour100

At that point the Arab world should have come together as one in condemnation of such a move but the Arab world, despite once being an entity in its own right, was already fragmenting at the hands of European colonialism which capitalised on a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity by trading on fear, greed and power. Now the Arab world is largely a group of nation states run by self-serving royals and dictators whose only motivation in life is to maintain their iron grip on the wealth and reins of power.

For the past 100 years, Arab rulers have done little or nothing to help the Palestinians. The charismatic and fearless Yasser Arafat, however, did manage to prick their consciences now and again and, at times, the possibility of peace seemed within the grasp of Palestinians under his leadership.

I remember visiting Arafat with an international delegation during his final days in Ramallah. He looked worn and frail, and his complexion was grey. On his table was a gun which he said he would use if the Israelis dared to invade his compound in the occupied West Bank. This wasn’t an idle threat; Israeli tanks were surrounding the building and the late Ariel Sharon, the antithesis of a peacemaker, was threatening to do all sorts, including physically removing Arafat from power. Since Israel has never chosen to be bound by international law — indeed, treats it with open contempt — such threats could not be taken lightly.

Arafat was blamed for being an obstacle to peace, and his Fatah movement and the Palestinian Liberation Organisation were labelled as terrorists or apologists for terrorism. Today, we hear the same old tired Zionist rhetoric but the obstacles to peace are now said to be the Fatah leadership and Hamas. In a few years it will be another bunch of players to blame, and so the cycle will continue unless both the international community and the Palestinian people rise up and cry “Enough!”

#BalfourExplained

Today’s Palestinian leadership in Ramallah is uninspiring; it is in decay and dying, literally. What hope can an ageing, corrupt and untrustworthy group of old men give the Palestinians? The reason we are still talking about Palestine today is because its people are strong, resilient and determined to get justice, and while Western governments and Tel Aviv long ago defanged the Ramallah leadership they cannot crush the ambitions of the Palestinian people.

All the promises made by current President Mahmoud Abbas, such as peace in the West Bank, have not been rewarded one iota. The Israel occupation is still in place and the building of illegal settlements continues unrestrained. You can almost see the tumbleweed rolling through the streets of despair in Ramallah today, which resembles more of a rest home for the elderly than a hotbed of Palestinian nationhood and political activism.

The population of Palestine is the youngest in the region, with a birth rate of over four children to every woman, and with 40 per cent of the population under 14 years old it can be regarded as a youthful nation. Those who are 65 years and above account for less than three per cent of the population, according to the World Population Review. There are bright, young men and women (let’s not forget the Palestinian women for God’s sake) who are more than capable of injecting some life and vitality back into Palestine, its political ambitions and its people. They are the next generation and are more than capable of pushing forward to make their dreams become a reality.

PA reduces medical referrals for Gaza patients by 80%

An injured Palestinian kid receives treatment at Kamal Adwan hospital in Beit Lahia, Gaza on July 30, 2014.

The clear deliverance of justice will come through neither the hands of the West nor the Arab leaders; both maintain the status quo of occupation and misery and are part of the problem not the solution. Abbas can deliver nothing — Benjamin Netanyahu will go to his grave making sure of that — but there is still hope for change.

Palestine needs a leader surrounded by a diverse team who can unite the West Bank and Gaza and stand up to the international community without being bought off by bribes and false promises. Abbas must, if he has any love left for Palestine or its people, step down and take the old guard with him. He is a leader without a mandate; even he must realise that.

Instead of standing up for his people he is punishing them from the West Bank to the Gaza Strip by enforcing brutal sieges and thereby continuing the unjust occupation. He has just one gift left which could redeem him overnight in the eyes of Palestinians everywhere. He could — and should — resign and hand over the leadership to someone who commands respect and will not be bought or bribed by Arab wealth and Zionist influence.

There are many players to blame for the plight of the Palestinians today, who are a people betrayed on all sides. The only hope now will come from political change at the top and a desire from those at the bottom to make sure that their next leadership is progressive, corruption-free, courageous and trustworthy. Palestine is no longer a country for old men. It must embrace the future, and the future is young.



Source Article from https://www.middleeastmonitor.com/20170825-palestine-is-no-country-for-old-men/#comment-3488493132