Can France succeed in mediatory efforts for Mideast peace?
-Dr. Abdul Ruff
US veto and flow of weapons to Israel
At the outset it needs to be stressed that France, like USA, never questioned the illegal possession of nukes by Israel, threatening the regional peace plus stability and without doing that Paris also cannot claim to be genuine mediator for Mideast peace.
Today humanity, shivering from the impact of all sorts of deadly terrorism on earth, where the US led NATO is bent upon employing militarism as the key policy tool to advance American goals globally, genuinely feels once Palestine state is established peace in Mideast-West Asia would naturally follow suit, leading to the creation of environment for world peace. However, Israel and its promoters in USA make strenuous efforts to deny any chance for peace either in West Asia or globally. Peace means cut in arms sales.
Thanks mainly to pro-Zionist policies of USA and Europe, Israel, imposed on Mideast in Palestine to occupy Palestinian lands, is today the most dreaded military power of West Asia. Israeli nukes obtained illegally from abroad make Israel one of the most powerful nuclear power.
The US super power claims the excusive power to mediate the Mideast crisis for a settlement. It does not, therefore, allows even Russia to mediate for a credible solution. Washington refuses to accept the Arab peace plan of 2002. US-led efforts to broker a so-called two-state solution collapsed in April 2014 and leaders on both sides have since been weakened politically.
The USA always vetoed UN Security Council resolutions that criticized Israel, but Israeli officials worry that against the background of tensions between the US and Israel, the US could abstain this time, allowing the UN body to recognize Palestine as a full UN member. That would indeed be a positive sign.
It is not for nothing that Israel has been so bold and so arrogant towards Palestinian people, in spite of international outcry over the planned Zionist crimes in Gaza Strip of Palestine as central part of its expansionist program through militarism.
Essentially a fascist, Israel plays its Zionist security card rather too well, explaining away easily its perpetration of genocides and destruction operations in Palestine. The Hamas ruling party of Gaza remains the target of Israeli military displaying its terror might including through provocative operations, is being projected as the terrorist organization in order to secure the continued low of military goods from its shielders – the USA and EU.
Israel very tactfully got both USA and European rulers on its board, getting their latest weapons system free of cost to its terror goods depots and in turn help them with the sale of their weapons to third world nations. Israel requests these western leaders to address Israeli parliament, Knesset. Like other European rulers, former French president, François Mitterand also addressed Israel’s parliament Knesset very early in 1982.
Israel, the strongest nation in Mideast thrives on lies on its terror attacks on Palestinians, on Hamasphobia. Israeli leaders know well that a weak organization Hamas cannot destroy a nuclear Israel; it can only fire a few toy rockets that would help Israel claim military and economic resources from western powers. Fascist Israel with nuclear arsenal still talks about “security” as a pretext to continue reluctant to withdraw fully from the West Bank, saying as usual that the “Islamist terrorist movement” Hamas would soon take control, placing Tel Aviv, Ben Gurion airport and Israel’s major north-south road network within easy reach of toy rocket attack.
The peace talks between Israel and Palestine mediated by United States have flopped, resulting in the regular genocides of besieged Palestinians because American mediators, like the Zionist leaders, are not sincere enough. Paris said that France does not want to replace the role of the USA in the Middle East but to work together.
While creating obstacles in the path for peace, Israel says peace will only come from direct negotiations between the parties without preconditions but only on Israeli terms.
Israel and USA have been exploiting Hamasphobia against the future of Palestinians and in favor of occupation and Zionist state crimes in Palestine.
After US failures, now its veto ally France calls for “negotiations” between besieged Palestine leadership and arrogant Israel. Before we reject outrightly the French call for Mideast peace as being a mischievous effort help Israel, let us consider some issues involved. With the region’s crises worsening and Washington reassessing its options on relations with Israel, France sees a narrow window to resume negotiations.
France is now considering a draft resolution submitting to the UN Security Council calling for peace talks to start immediately, and specifies that negotiations on future borders should be based on the 1967 armistice lines with mutually agreed land swaps. It sets a deadline of two years for the process to be completed. If that is not met, then wholesale recognition of a sovereign Palestinian state would follow.
Back in August 2009, when it was clear that newly-elected US President Obama was eager to relaunch peace talks between Israel and the Palestinians, Jewish French President Nicolas Sarkozy offered to host an international conference to facilitate the peace process but it turned out to be a mere show for publicity. France even took the lead in drafting a Security Council resolution outlining proposals for an Israeli-Palestinian final-status deal..
French foreign minister Laurent Fabius visited recently the Middle East on June 20-22 and met Egyptian President Fattah el-Sisi in Cairo, Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas in Ramallah, and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in Jerusalem. Laurent Fabius laid out a three-pronged plan in Jerusalem for restarting Israeli-Palestinian peace talks. France would recognize a Palestinian state and, unlike USA, supported the UN vote on Palestine state. France has been discussing the text of the proposed UN resolution with both Israel and the Palestinians. Palestinian Authority leader Mahmoud Abbas said that he welcomes Fabius’ proposals and that the Palestinian Authority will do what they can to make it work. Israeli PM B. Netanyahu was far less sanguine however, saying that the only way to reach an agreement is through bilateral negotiations, where the Zionist leadership could have a veto. Israel will forcibly reject any attempts to force international dictates upon the Jewish illegal occupants.
France’s plan calls for a return to negotiations, an international committee to help mediate problems as they arise and a UN Security Council Resolution about the process. It is this last point that most concerns Israeli officials as they worry that that resolution will call for a complete withdrawal from all of the areas that Israel acquired in 1967—the West Bank, Gaza Strip and east Jerusalem.
French-led initiative would see the peace process relaunched through an international support group comprising Arab states, the European Union and UN Security Council members, has urged Israel and Palestine to return to the negotiating table quickly, warning that the stalemate in the peace process risked setting the conflict “ablaze”. These states would then work to pressure both sides to make compromises that neither wants to make alone. Talks would be rubber-stamped by a UN Security Council resolution setting the negotiating parameters and establishing a time period, possibly 18 months, to complete talks.
It’s been 40 years that Palestinians are under terror attacks by Israeli military. France says the big powers need to adapt the method so that the Arabs, the Europeans, the Americans can accompany things, according to Fabius.
France has long called for the creation of a Palestinian State through negotiations. France considers that the conflict can only be resolved by the creation of an independent, viable and democratic Palestinian State living in peace and security alongside Israel. The two-state solution is one that fulfils the national aspirations of Israelis and Palestinians. With this in mind, France has defined, with its European partners in a number of conclusions of the Foreign Affairs Council of ministers of the European Union since 2009, the parameters that should govern resolution of the conflict: Borders based on the 1967 lines with equivalent land swaps; Security arrangements preserving the sovereignty of the Palestinian State and ensuring the security of Israel; A just, fair and agreed solution to the refugee problem; An arrangement making Jerusalem the capital of the two states.
France condemns Israel’s illegal settlement activities, which are illegal in international law. Israel settlement building in the territories of the future Palestinian State constitutes illegal appropriation of lands, which should be addressed in peace negotiations between the parties on the basis of the 1967 lines. Settlement activities threaten the viability of a two-state solution. Concrete measures were taken at European level to address the acceleration of settlement activities. EU guidelines adopted in July 2013 do not allow any Israeli entities with activities in settlements to be awarded European funds as from January 2014. Many Member States, including France, issued recommendations warning of the financial, legal and reputational risks related to pursing activities in settlements.
True, France has long advocated the creation of a Palestinian State. On 22 November 1974, France voted in favour of recognising the PLO in the UN as an observer member, reaffirming the inalienable rights of the Palestinian people. France considers that Jerusalem should become the capital of the two states, Israel and the future State of Palestine Pending a negotiated settlement of the conflict and under internationally recognised resolutions, France does not recognize any sovereignty in Jerusalem. It calls for the easing of tensions and particularly respect of the status quo on holy sites. Any challenging to the status quo would pose a major threat to stability.
A State for Palestinians is a right, repeatedly reaffirmed, and acknowledged in the partition plan of the mandated Palestine (1947). However, recognition of the State of Palestine must serve peace. That is why France defends the idea that this should happen within the framework of a comprehensive and definitive solution to the conflict, negotiated by the two parties. If negotiation is impossible, or if there are no conclusions, France will shoulder its responsibilities by recognising without delay the State of Palestine.
France contributes to institution building for the future Palestinian State. It allocated nearly €400 million over the period 2008-2014 to help Palestine, with nearly one third benefiting Gaza. Palestine remains the main beneficiary of French budgetary aid.
France encourages inter-Palestinian reconciliation. It is doing so in order to foster the return of the Palestinian Authority in Gaza, which will be part of the Palestinian State. It supports the government of national unity, under the authority of Mahmoud Abbas, which does not include any ministers from Hamas (put on the list of terrorist organisations by the EU in 2003) and meets the criteria set by the Quartet: recognition of Israel, renunciation of violence and acceptance of previous agreements.
France advocates urgent mobilization of the international community. Taking note of the current impasse of the peace process, France calls for a change in the negotiation method. It promotes an increased role of the UNSC in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. It promotes the Security Council’s endorsement of the parameters for resolving the conflict and a timeframe for ending negotiations. France also calls for closer international support to encourage parties to conclude an agreement and a stronger involvement of Arab countries and Europeans alongside the United States. It stands ready to hold an international conference in this connection. It hopes that negotiations can be concluded in the near future.
Zionist expansionist strategy and French policy
French policy never bothered to end Zionist expansionist ideas and its strategy for genocides in Palestine. French president François Mitterrand was the first president who spoke before the Knesset in 1982 about the objective of creating a Palestinian State. In 2010, France enhanced the status of the General Delegation of Palestine in France, which became the Mission of Palestine, headed by an ambassador. It voted in favour of according the State of Palestine non-member observer state status in the United Nations in November 2012.
France claims to be a friend of Israel and Palestine. Like USA, France also claims it shares strong historical, cultural and human ties with Israel. France was one of the first countries to recognize the new State and establish diplomatic relations with it in 1949. For 65 years, it has defended Israel’s right to exist, live in security and be a full member of the community of sovereign nations. The Franco-Israeli relationship is also strengthened by the presence of a significant French and French-speaking community in Israel and Europe’s largest Jewish community in France.
Like other European rulers, former French president, François Mitterand also addressed Israel’s parliament Knesset in 1982. Like USA, France has also consistently defended Israel’s right to exist in security, while long advocating the creation of a Palestinian state. It was indeed a mischief played on the Palestinians. Any possible incompatibility between these two positions has never been acknowledged. It certainly kept the Israeli military on perpetual attack mode against Palestinians and also created rift within Palestinians.
France is fully committed to the security of Israel and not of Palestine. This is a key principle of its policy in the region. France also condemns without reservation terrorist acts aiming sabotaging hopes for peace. That is why it calls on Hamas, which is on the European list of terrorist organisations, to adhere to the conditions set by the Quartet: the renunciation of violence, the recognition of the right of Israel to exist and the recognition of the agreements signed between Israel and the PLO. Though France has also called on Israel to comply fully with international humanitarian law and to exercise a “proportionate use of force”, particularly in the Gaza conflict in the summer of 2014, causing more than 2,100 Palestine victims, including hundreds of children – it never cared to implement it by coercing Israel to abandon crimes as state policy.
Given France’s involvement in the ME region, it is not surprising that it sees itself as a possible facilitator of an Israeli-Palestinian peace accord. Back in August 2009, when it was clear that newly-elected US President Obama was eager to relaunch peace talks between Israel and the Palestinians, Jewish French President Nicolas Sarkozy offered to host an international conference to facilitate the peace process but it turned out to be a mere show for publicity. France even took the lead in drafting a Security Council resolution outlining proposals for an Israeli-Palestinian final-status deal.
Unfortunately France’s initiative, well-meaning as undoubtedly is, is a recipe for continued conflict far into an impenetrable future. France may or may not be sincere about peace and Palestine.
As a bad mediator, USA still backs Israel and opposes Palestine. It also does not want any other power to mediate for Mideast peace. Israel vows to defeat UN resolutions that are brought about by any power to punish Israel or create Palestine state, by using US veto. Israel wants to decide the course of future of Mideast.
Trust deficit in Palestine appreciation of US policy for Mideast as well as Israeli fascist mindset is a serious issue to be addressed. It is funny that the deadliest terror state beyond West Asia and even beyond Asian continent Israel calls a besieged Palestine nation as a terrorist state. France and all western powers should fist call Israel a terrorist state and recognize it as such until Israel becomes ready to cooperate with world powers to establish the much delayed Palestine state.
However, neither France nor USA or UK twins thought along those lines when forcefully imposed a new state of Israel in Palestine an aided it to emerge as a fascist blood sucking nation in Mideast.
The timing of the French initiative is due to the US stating that it might “reassess” its Middle Eastern policies after Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu publicly said he was against Palestinian statehood during elections last month.
Unfortunately France’s initiative, well-meaning as undoubtedly is, is a recipe for continued conflict far into an impenetrable future. France may or may not be sincere about Middle East peace and Palestine but given France’s involvement in the ME region, it is not surprising that it sees itself as a possible facilitator of an Israeli-Palestinian peace accord.
Like USA, France has also consistently defended Israel’s right to exist in security, while long advocating the creation of a Palestinian state. It was indeed a double mischief played by Europe and USA on the Palestinians. Any possible incompatibility between these two positions has never been acknowledged publicly. It certainly kept the Israeli military on perpetual attack mode against Palestinians and also created rift within Palestinian sections.
Moreover, France is not a great friend of Islam or Islamic world but, on the contrary, is at war with Islam as part of US led NATO and therefore would not, like USA has shown, play a genuine mediator rule in helping the Palestinians make he for themselves on their won lands now under Israeli military control.
Colonial powers, France and Britain were responsible for dismembering the Turkish Ottoman Empire and coordinated their efforts World War I in the eventual division of Turkish-held Syria, Iraq, Lebanon, and Palestine into various French- and British-administered areas. They also then ratified the division by the then Council of the League of Nations in 1922. France’s direct participation in the creation of the modern Middle East has meant that for the last hundred years it has involved itself in the politics of the region.
The same Britain and France are urging the UN Security Council to restart the Israeli-Palestinian peace process, while New Zealand has begun drafting a resolution on the issue. This was prompted by the US saying it may “reassess” its position on the stalled talks. France and New Zealand have stressed that it is imperative to act now, given that the Israeli elections are over and there is a current lull in the US before the presidential election campaign heats up. France announced last month that it wanted to begin talks about drafting “parameters” for ending the conflict in the Middle East, with the hopes of bringing the US onboard, which has repeatedly sided with Israel in the past.
Whether or not the French effort for peace in Mideast by helping establish Palestine state would yield positive results remains to be seen. However, its effort, howsoever insincere that may be, cannot be undermined. Palestinians require support of any kind at this point of time when establishment of Palestine state as a UN member is becoming a reality!
In fact, humanity is eager France succeeds in mediatory efforts for Mideast peace by taking the besieged Palestinians into confidence.