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The American Ceiling
By: Mohammad Al-Sahli
December 20, 2016

The Palestinian national rights do not have any place under the American political ceiling.

Washington has recently witnessed talks between a delegation from the Palestinian Authority and US officials, including the secretary of state; John Kerry, at a time when the Obama administration is preparing to leave.

Many files can be exposed in these meetings, but the reliability on tangible results of the visit contradicts with the course of the bilateral relations, which were always colliding with the American bias to the Israeli occupation interests in the framework of the settlement process and outside it.

According to the sources of the same delegation, the most important issues that are related to the authority leadership's intention of to submit a draft resolution structure to the Security Council against the Israeli settlement in the occupied Palestinian territories, and to explore Washington's attitude toward the matter, hoping not to use its veto and to stop the draft resolution, and the possibility for Obama to submit a «deposit» which define his vision of the determinants of the settlement between the Palestinian and Israeli sides.

The United States once used the «veto» in the Security Council against a draft resolution against the Israeli settlement. At that time, Washington said that the draft resolution «disrupts» the negotiations between the Palestinian and Israeli sides. And because the presented settlement mechanisms and their rules «leave» for the two sides, the agreement on the elements of the political conflict solution without the intervention of the international legitimacy resolutions, so the US pressure to restrict the Palestinian movement in the framework of the negotiations means clearly leaving the final decision regarding any file in the conflict for Israel.

The US administrations dealt, according to this equation, with the Palestinian negotiator since the start of the settlement process, and before that in the context of the preparation for texts and extensions of the Oslo Accords before their signature. Since that time, it has not happened any practical breakthrough to this equation. The only phenomenon that manifested differently was Obama's speech in Cairo (2009) and it has been proven, with the time, that it was just a «talk» about the settlement and the need to freeze it, and it was unsaid... quickly.

The former US President George W. Bush has already described that the Palestinian apartheid wall in the West bank as a «Snake that Wiggles», then he unsaid it, with the acceptance of the 14th Sharon's «adjustments» on the road map peace plan, which blew up the possibility of reaching a solution to establish an independent Palestinian state.

There is no political justification for Obama while he is packing his departure bags from the White House, because the talk is about the US policy that within its determinants, are the strategic relations between Tel Aviv and Washington, and both of the Republican and Democratic administrations committed to sponsor and develop these relations.

The foregoing, was one of the conclusions that the national consensus decided it in 2012, and according to it, the Palestinian endeavor launched towards the United Nations, after the Palestinian negotiator publicly confessed about the failure of the settlement with its existing rules.

This also handles the Obama's «deposit» matter, that the Palestinian negotiator hopes in his recent visit to Washington ,that the US president has determined to announce it, and we do not know what is the bet about, even if Obama launched the determinants of the settlement which he puts as he is on the edge of his last presidency. The US attitude is known and it has been repeated more than once in the two terms of Obama and in more than a negotiating station, it was expressed clearly through the so-called «Kerry understandings» which confirmed the absolute bias for the expansionist and security considerations of Israel at the expense of the Palestinian people's rights.

The delegation's visit comes after the announcement of President Abbas about the Palestinian serious steps that will be taken in the United Nations, including the submitting of a draft resolution to the Security Council against the settlement, and the submitting of a draft resolution to the United Nations General Assembly that call for giving Palestine the active membership with full rights in the international forum. So, the legitimate question was whether the aim of the delegation's visit was to explore the opinion of the old American administration and perhaps the «new» about the draft resolutions, which the PA plans to submit them.

The question legitimacy comes primarily from the official Palestinian policy path towards the settlement with its various stages. This path confirms that the US attitude was most of the time, a ceiling for the official Palestinian attitude under the title that any attitude that does not have the consent of Washington will not be practically applied. According to this conviction and its practice on the ground, the United States found its chance in order to reduce the roof of its attitudes for the interest of the Israeli attitude which maintained its rigidity throughout the earlier phases of the settlement.

It has been proved tangibly over the past long experience that there is no place for any of the Palestinian national rights under the American political ceiling, starting with the right to return, ending with the establishment of the independent Palestinian state with full sovereignty over all the occupied Palestinian territories by the aggression of 1967 and its capital is East Jerusalem.

The matter in our opinion, is not just related to the American ceiling because it is connected to the Israeli ceiling also within an integrated proportion of attitudes. And perhaps the American attitude toward the Palestinian youth intifada, confirms this fact after John Kerry described it as a terrorism, and called the Palestinian Authority before Tel Aviv to face it.

Briefly, we are dealing with a serious ally for the occupation that is linked by solid relations based on common interests, therefore, it is better for Washington to be cautious of the power elements in the Palestinian case, as what happened during the first Intifada; and the most prominent elements of power at that time was represented by the national field and political action, in the framework of the unified national liberation program.

This means that the reconsideration of the Palestinian situation, passes necessarily through the commitment of the national consensus decisions, in particular the Palestinian Central Council's decisions in March of the last year. In this context, perhaps it is important to emphasize the need for exiting the Palestinian political system from its accumulated crises through the re-election of the institutions and bodies in each of the PLO and the PA in accordance with the proportional representation law and this extends to the civil society organizations and unions.

Within these two lines that are integrated politically and organizationally, the right path appears, which provides the advancement of the Palestinian national action again and enables the Palestinian case to retake the initiative and to strengthen its ability to confront the pressure and to get out from the limits of the roofs which are going down more and more.


Mohammad Al-Sahli is Editor in Chief of Al-Hourriah newspaper, the official speaker of the Democratic Front for the Liberation of Palestine
Translated by Rawda Abu Zarqa and Ibrahim Mutlaq


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