“We don’t do that”, I answered, and here’s why.
Israel is the 4th most powerful nuclear state on the planet. Palestine is a collection of Arab reservations in the West Bank who have the armed capacity of a county government in the USA.
Green Olive doesn’t see the ‘balance’ here.
Palestine continues to have land confiscated and Israeli/Jewish settlers continue to move there. We are in the middle of the largest expansion of the settlements in the 50-year history of the Occupation.
We don’t see much ‘balance’ in this situation.
The Green Olive Collective does not advocate any nationalist ideology. However we do advocate for full and equal civil and political rights for everyone between the Jordan and the Mediterranean, regardless of the final outcome - one state - two states etc. Currently the state of Israel controls the entire territory and in East Jerusalem and the West Bank Jewish residents are full citizens, whereas their Muslim and Christian neighbours are not, and are subject to military law.
There is no ‘Balance’ in this scenario.
In many parts of Area ‘C’ of the West Bank, notably the Jordan Valley, Gush Etzion, Shilo district, and the South Hebron Hills, Land confiscation and forced relocation of Muslim residents is ongoing in these areas, while any Jew in the world can live in any of the segregated Jewish-only settlements in the West Bank.
I fail to see any ‘Balance’ in these activities.
The state of Israel continues (along with Egypt) to control and restrict ingress and egress to and from the Gaza strip, including a blockade of the coastline. Israel also controls the ingress and egress of Palestinians in the West Bank and routinely either expels people from the territory, or forbids them to travel. The Palestinian Authority has no say in this process.
‘Balance’ is not an operational term in Israel/Palestine
Finally, so long as I can travel the length and breadth of this country with a privileged ID card, come and go as I please, and have full access to a judiciary that still provides some semblance of justice - but my Palestinian friends cannot - then there is not and cannot be ‘Balance’
Fred Schlomka is the CEO of the Green Olive Collective.
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