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Failure is not Allowed
By: Moatasem Hamadeh
December 5, 2017

Failure means turning back in time, and limiting the national program, in favor of the Zionist project and "deal of the century".

We do not exaggerate by saying that all Palestinians followed with interest and passion the Cairo dialogue on 21/11/2017 to take additional and practical steps to complete the reconciliation process, end the division, rebuild the destroyed Palestinian institutions and renew the legitimacy of what have been existed with lacked mechanisms, that need a legal cover sometimes , which opens the door to question many of the resolutions, laws and decrees, especially when they are the subject of a political dispute and have an impact on the internal national relations or on the public policy of the PA or the PLO or affect the interests of groups of Palestinians, as happened with teachers or employees or putting an unjust law for the digital media or the pursuit of bloggers to mute their voices in a repressive policy that went beyond the limits of the judicial laws adopted by the Palestinian Authority itself. As well as to solve the total of the permanently social issues in Gaza Strip, which has suffered, for more than ten years, from the siege, aggression and division.

We all followed the Cairo dialogue with legitimate concern, because it is not the first time in which the Palestinian parties gather (all or bi-lateral meetings) to discuss the reconciliation and the ending of division. It is not the first initiative that forms the basis for folding the page of the past and opening the page of the future.

As 4/5/2011 was one of the main stations that has developed a complete work plan to the reconciliation, ending the division and to arrange the Palestinian home, either by reconstruction, or repairing where necessary. The 2011 agreement remained inactive in the drawers, then the 2013 agreement came, and drew up laws and mechanisms for rebuilding the institutions of the Palestinian Authority and the PLO (which all of their mandates have ended and they are still practicing their role with the force of necessity), and the agreement too remained locked in the drawers.

Then, Al-Shate'a Agreement was born in (2014) and the National Accord Government was born under its light as a tool to end the division. However, things got worse and more complicated, which led to revive a new "de facto government" in the Gaza Strip, where the administrative committee, formed by a decision from Hamas, submitted a request for trust (!) from the Hamas parliamentary bloc (in the Legislative Council which its mandate has expired), so, the committee seemed to revive the Haniyeh government, which announced its withdrawal from the administration of the strip under the 2014 agreement.

Therefore, we look with concern to the Cairo dialogue and what will be resulted from it, and to the extent in which the concerned parties (Fatah and Hamas) are directly committed to the application of it, not from the point of doubting, but from the position of concern for the agreement, its success and its development. We are haunted by the fear that has accumulated from the series of failures we have seen in more than one station (from Gaza, Doha, Cairo, Mecca, Sanaa and Khartoum).

From the position of national commitment, from the position of partnership in national responsibility, we have had, from the very first moment of division, a clear and open position against fighting, bloodshed and resorting to weapons to resolve differences, and a clear position against division, and a clear call for immediate retraction from it, and the rearrangement of situation with what serves the national interest, and passes the individual interests.

Also, from the position of responsibility, we stood between the both sides of conflict, to put an end to the fighting, besides ending the shed of Palestinian blood in the wrong place. In addition to that, we, in cooperation with other factions, or with some of them, calmed down the intensity of verbal strife, before they turned into a fight with the blood of innocent victims. In the same context, we, alone or with Palestinian national and democratic forces launched, a series of initiatives, which have become a weapon for the public movement, which demanded an end to division and the restoration of internal unity. We have also turned the street into a tool of democratic pressure, in a series of moves. Even inside the prisons, along with other forces, we have turned the captives' movement into an element of pressure on both sides. Most important of all, we have highlighted the division, its destructive backgrounds, its covered projects, and its big danger. We have also highlighted, without hesitation, the local, regional and international parties and groups that impede the reconciliation, deepen the divisions, either in the service of local agendas and interests and limited factional influence, or in the service of an Arab and American agendas, whose files have been penetrated by external non-Palestinian elements and forces, that contributed greatly in deepening division, weakening the Palestinian situation, distorting the image of the Palestinian side and marginalizing the Palestinian national cause, which all of them are in the service of the Zionist project, and the alternative projects for the national solution and the legitimate national rights of the Palestinian people in independence, freedom, sovereignty, return and self-determination.

Failure is forbidden

Failure means that we have lost the opportunity offered to us by Egypt. It means turning back in time, which means restoring the atmosphere of tension and bloody fighting and media strife. It also means that we have painted a picture of a Palestinian state, unable to fulfil its national responsibilities, and does not deserve to get any brotherly, friendly, Arab or international effort.

Failure means spreading frustration among the Palestinians, reinforcing the situation of doubt about who has the right to take the decision, on the two lines in the West Bank and the Gaza Strip, and promoting the negative state of retrogression that is clear among the Palestinian public, which is waiting to know what is happening secretly.

Moreover, failure means tightening the siege on the Palestinian national program, increasing the limits of the Zionist project, and providing the conditions for the launch of «deal of the century» behind the back of the Palestinian people, and working to pass it through various forms of Arab-Israeli normalization.

Therefore, in order to avoid the danger of failure, the Democratic Front and other Palestinian national and democratic forces must bear their responsibilities in Cairo by presenting ideas, visions, proposals, and solutions to pending issues. Whether about solving difficult issues on the social side, in Gaza strip, or about the political aspect, depending on deep recognition and awareness that the basis for reconciliation, and that the way to break the path to all forms of division, is to agree on a national program, in which on its basis, the national strategy of the Palestinian struggle will be constructed.

At the forefront of this matter, is the strengthening of the role of institutions, and transferring them from institutions of bilateral differences, as was the case in the second Legislative Council, and as it was in Haniyeh's second government, between Fatah and Hamas, to institutions for national partnership based on democratic foundations, through comprehensive elections, in accordance with the law of full proportional representation, which allows to a wider national partnership, including the contribution of independent institutions and personalities and civil society activities in shaping and strengthening this partnership. It also allows the role of popular censorship to take its range, and at the same time put an end to the bilateralism, based on the disunity between Fatah and Hamas, or the exclusivity, by the current official leadership, or to marginalize others, including the popular movement which has the first interest in the reconciliation, ending the division, rebuilding the national institutions, and providing the elements of a new start for the Palestinian national situation, as a national liberation movement, that adopts the struggle on the ground, and in international forums, including the International Criminal Court, away from the illusion of a solution through bilateral negotiations under the United States sponsorship, and far from the illusions of false American promises, most recently the promise of deal of the century.

Moatasem Hamade is a member of the Political Bureau of the Democratic Front for the Liberation of Palestine
Translated by: Rash Abo Allan
Revised by: Ibrahim Motlaq

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