Editorial

Like a thief in the night, Israel exploits global crisis

A Palestinian man facing Israeli forces shouts slogans during a protest against Israel's plan to annex parts of the occupied West Bank, near the town of Tulkarem. (AFP / ABBAS MOMANI)

Israel is preparing to make the announcement of annexation in parts of the West Bank in the coming few weeks, with the army being instructed to step up preparations as measures are underway to pave the way for a dramatic move in parts of the occupied territory and the Jordan Valley.

In addition, Netanyahu has bluntly made it clear that residents of the Jordan Valley would not be considered Israeli citizens, meaning that if they choose to stay they will be treated as people under the occupation.

Israeli leaders, who differ on almost every internal issue, have picked this particular time to go ahead, with the warnings and condemnations from the international community, which is reeling under the repercussions of coronavirus, confined to more paperwork.

The Trump administration, the real culprit that allowed Israel to proceed with its plans, has been urging the Jewish state to curb its enthusiasm for the annexation, but it is currently distracted by over 100,000 dead from the COVID-19 pandemic, an economy that has gone into a tailspin, and violent riots resulting from the police killing of George Floyd.

Meanwhile, the Palestinian authority, which seems helpless and toothless under the circumstances, can only protest much like the Arabs, who have their own serious problems to attend to.

Already we can observe a spike in the day-to-day restrictions and violent treatment of Palestinians, and it seems the Tel Aviv government is once again getting away with murder.

Moreover, preoccupation with the Palestinians affords Netanyahu, who is facing legal troubles, something that will redirect the country’s attention.

It’s clear that the Palestinians must decide what they are going to do about this looming brazen land grab without falling into despair, and continue hammering at the international community to keep world bodies on course to carrying out their just duties and prevent yet another crime.

 

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