The Deal of the Century Is More Like a Surrender Ultimatum to the Palestinians
The deal’s lopsided terms intentionally treat the Palestinians as an occupied people, which they technically are in terms of international law, but then proceeds with the mantra of “might makes right” to demand that they accept the undignified offer that’s being presented to them instead of restoring their international rights by negotiating with them as an equal partner.
The US’ newly unveiled “deal of the century” is far from a sincere deal in spirit and more akin to a surrender ultimatum to the Palestinians. The “Israelis” aren’t really “compromising” on anything apart from a proposed four-year freeze on the construction of new settlements to supposedly facilitate negotiations with the Palestinians, after which these internationally illegal projects could simply be unilaterally continued if the latter fails to agree to this plan.
The Palestinians have already understandably rejected it because the deal’s writers envisage “Israel” retaining control over all existing settlements as well as the international borders of the proposed Palestinian state, which would be almost entirely surrounded by “Israel”. Even worse from their perspective is the demand that the Palestinians demilitarize (including through the difficult-to-imagine disarmament of the powerful Hamas) and enact vague political “reforms” ordered by outsiders. Plus, the Palestinian right of return is denied.
These lopsided terms intentionally treat the Palestinians as an occupied people, which they technically are in terms of international law, but then proceeds with the mantra of “might makes right” to demand that they accept the undignified offer that’s being presented to them instead of restoring their international rights by negotiating with them as an equal partner. Polemics aside, “Israel” is by and far much stronger in a military sense than Palestine is, so it’s essentially seeking to impose its will on the weaker party.
There’s no much that the Palestinians can realistically do to oppose the deal, though, since it also calls for the imposition of harsh sanctions against them if no progress is made on implementing its contents. The “carrot” accompanying this “stick”, however, is the promise of $50 billion worth of investment that’s supposed to improve the Palestinians’ living conditions and connect their discontiguous territories, but which in practice amounts to a last-ditch effort to buy them off before commencing the threatened unilateral sanctions.
It therefore isn’t possible to refer to this plan as a “deal” since the word itself by definition implies negotiations between two generally equal parties in good faith ending with a jointly agreed-upon outcome, not the militarily stronger of the two demanding a host of unilateral concessions from the weaker one that go against international law and are backed up by unilateral sanctions threats. Such a proposal isn’t a deal between equals, but a surrender ultimatum to a conquered people.
Alas, there isn’t much that the international community can realistically do to support the Palestinians. It’s impossible to imagine the imposition of UNSC-approved sanctions against “Israel” if it unilaterally annexes the proposed territories since the self-professed “Jewish State’s” American ally wouldn’t rationally go along with such a plan of action after literally authoring the Palestinian’s de-facto surrender instrument in close coordination with Tel Aviv over the past few years.
Accordingly, it’s unlikely that any economically powerful state would unilaterally sanction it either since such governments don’t have any direct stake in the conflict and actually enjoy excellent ties with “Israel” as it is. Furthermore, sanctions that aren’t approved by the UNSC are technically illegal too, and Russia for example would never violate international law like that, especially not against “Israel”. Iran might call on the world to do so, but those few that might comply with its request wouldn’t have any meaningful impact on shaping events.
This brings the present analysis to its bleak conclusion, which is that there’s very little of significance that can be done to change things apart from the Palestinians returning to militancy (“intifada”) out of desperation at having such an undignified surrender instrument forced upon them. Even then, however, “Israel” might simply portray its usual overwhelming response to such attacks as consistent with its UN-enshrined “right to self-defense”, arguing that those who oppose its actions yearn for its destruction and are therefore “anti-Semitic”.
By Andrew Korybko
Source: One World