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PEACEFUL RESISTANCE FOR JUSTICE AGAINST ISRAEL AND THE UNITED STATES:
International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People
Thursday, 2 December 2010
Given the harsh treatment of America's child prison population, and Washington's appalling human rights record and support for Israel, only grassroots pressure might get either country to reform, a campaign well worth initiating.
On November 29, 1947, the UN General Assembly passed Resolution 181, the Palestine Partition Plan, granting 56% of historic Palestine to Jews (with one-third of the population), 42% to Palestinians, with Jerusalem designated an international city (a corpus separatum - separate body) under a UN Trusteeship Council. The area included all Jerusalem, Bethlelem, and Beit Sahour, to encompass Christian holy sites.
Resolution 181 called for an Independent Arab state by October 1, 1948, asking:
However, Israel's 1948 "War of Independence" intervened, creating the Jewish state on May 14, 1948 on 78% of historic Palestine, excluding Gaza, the West Bank and East Jerusalem.
On December 2, 1947, the General Assembly (GA) passed Resolution 32/40 A and B, stating its deep concern:
It reaffirmed "that a just and lasting peace in the Middle East cannot be established without the achievement, inter alia, of a just solution of the problem of Palestine on the basis of the inalienable rights of the Palestinian people, including the right of return and the right to national independence and sovereignty in Palestine, in accordance with the Charter of the United Nations."
Urging the Security Council to act promptly on this matter, the GA declared, "commencing in 1978, the annual observance of 29 November as the International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian people."
On December 1, 2005, the GA requested that the Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People and the Division for Palestinian Rights (CEIRPP), as part of the International Day of Solidarity observance, to continue organizing an annual exhibit or cultural event on Palestinian rights in cooperation with the Permanent Observer Mission of Palestine to the UN. It also encouraged Member States to widely support and publicize the day that should have established an independent Palestinian state.
Sixty-three years later, none exists, affirming Resolution 32/40's belief that no Middle East peace is possible without "a just solution to the problem of Palestine." As a result, regional wars, occupation, and settlement expansions continue. Increasingly, Palestinians are oppressed, dispossessed, isolated, and denied what UN resolutions and international laws mandate, including a viable sovereign state, East Jerusalem as its capital, and the right of diaspora refugees to return.
None of these are achieved or in sight, nor have world leaders held Israel accountable for breaching virtually all international humanitarian laws, as well as others on war and occupation.
Specifically, Israel systematically and willfully failed to recognize Palestinian self-determination under provisions of the December 1960 UN General Assembly Declaration on the Granting of Independence to Colonial Countries and Peoples, as well as all UN resolutions before and thereafter affirming Palestinian self-determination, including:
Israel also failed to comply with the Convention on the Suppression and Punishment of the Crime of Apartheid (the Apartheid Convention), as defined by the Rome Statute to include murder, extermination, enslavement, torture, arbitrary arrest, illegal imprisonment, denial of the right to life and liberty, cruel, inhuman and degrading treatment, and other abusive acts imposed by one group or nation on another.
As a result, Palestinians have endured slow-motion genocide through:
On November 29 and every day, solidarity with them should be affirmed until they're free and independent on their own land in peace.
The International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women
On December 20, 1993 the UN General Assembly (GA) adopted Resolution 48/104 - Declaration on the Elimination of Violence against Women, to include:
Also, these same abuses within the community, educational institutions, elsewhere, and violence committed or condoned by the state, "wherever it occurs."
On December 17, 1999, the GA passed Resolution 54/134, designating November 25 as the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women, adopted by the body on February 7, 2000:
The resolution stemmed from the 1960 assassination of the three Mirabel sisters, political activists in the Dominican Republic, on order of military strongman Rafael Trujillo (El Jefe - the Chief or Boss).
Palestinian women especially have endured decades of occupation related violence, an article on the Al-Zaytouna Centre for Studies and Consultations' early 2010 report.
It noted their "exceptional suffering" and remarkable endurance qualities under harsh conditions. Living under stress in poverty, their homes destroyed, lands razed or expropriated, children sick, husbands imprisoned, fathers killed, and more, they plant seeds of hope, fulfill their daily social role, and participate actively in political and every day resistance heroically.
Refugees in their own land and abroad, they've bourn burdens beyond what most women anywhere bear. Yet they persist and endure, including in Gaza under siege and the effects of Cast Lead, as well as regular Israeli assaults, incursions, targeted and random killings.
They're also arrested, tortured and imprisoned, a reminder to remember them every day, especially the one designated against violence, November 25, that should highlight its elimination against anyone for any reason.
International Women's Day
Its history dates from the February 28, 1909 US National Women's Day. Other countries picked up on the theme, rallying for gender equality, for peace during WW I, and continued advocacy for women thereafter. On March 8, 1975, the UN began celebrating International Women's Day. In December 1977, the GA proclaimed a UN day for Women's Rights and International Peace.
In February 2008, UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon launched: "UNiTe to End Violence against Women," a campaign "to prevent and eliminate violence against women and girls in all parts of the world," and punish violators. On November 25, Michelle Bachelet, Executive Director of UN Women, said women and girls everywhere face violence throughout their lives.
"The UNiTe campaign places the issue at the top of the UN agenda." Whether or not so, women continue to be violated and abused, especially in places like Occupied Palestine where UN resolutions and agendas aren't enforced by member states or the world body. It's time Ban followed his rhetoric with action, what he's failed to do since taking office on January 1, 2007, serving power, not popular interests.
A Final Comment
Like men and women, children also endure violence and abuse, notably in Occupied Palestine, one of several earlier articles explained.
On November 30, Al-Awda, The Palestine Right to Return Coalition issued an action alert to "Release all Palestinian Children from Israeli Prisons," demanding:
Recent reports revealed escalated night raids and other arrests in communities like Silwan, adjacent to Jerusalem's Old City, one of 28 Palestinian villages incorporated into East Jerusalem. Children as young as 10 have been targeted, arrested, terrorized, interrogated, tortured, threatened with sexual assault, including rape, and detained. Every year, over 700 are affected, mostly on charges of stone-throwing, whether or not true.
Al-Awda "calls on all its members, supporters and people of conscience" to demand this outrage end, that all Palestinian children detained be released, and for Washington "to cut off all aid until" until Israel stops violating "human rights and basic freedoms in a verifiable manner."
Given America's child prison population, how harshly they're treated, and Washington's appalling human rights record and support for Israel, only grassroots pressure might get either country to reform, but only if sustained relentlessly, a campaign well worth initiating.
Listen to Lendman's cutting-edge discussions with distinguished guests on the Progressive Radio News Hour on the Progressive Radio Network Thursdays at 10AM US Central time and Saturdays and Sundays at noon. All programs are archived for easy listening.
Mr. Lendman's stories are republished in the Baltimore Chronicle with permission of the author.
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