12.03.12 Congratulations, Palestine

I hereby congratulate the people of Palestine on their recent initial step towards international recognition. And I am deeply ashamed that the United States was among only nine UN members to vote against granting Palestine nonmember observer status at the UN. The hall of shame includes also: Canada, the Czech Republic, Israel, Marshall Islands, Micronesia (Federated States of), Nauru, Palau, and Panama. Many Western Europeans voted in favor, including: Austria, Belgium,  Denmark, Finland, France, Greece, Iceland, Ireland, Italy, Liechtenstein, Luxembourg, Norway, Portugal, Spain, Sweden, and Switzerland. You know you’re in bad company when every single Nordic country is voting against you.

Of course, Israel responded to this oh-so-tiny move towards justice by announcing an aggressive new settlement-buidling program on West Bank land they have stolen  from the Palestinians. This new plan will serve to divide the northern and southern West Bank in such a manner that a contiguous West Bank may no longer be possible, “represent[ing] an almost fatal blow to remaining chances of securing a two-state solution,” according to a press officer for UN General Secretary Ban Ki-moon.

In reaction to the Israeli announcement, Britain, France, Spain, Sweden and Denmark have withdrawn their ambassadors. Meanwhile, the US is “reiterating [its] long standing opposition to Israeli settlement activity,” and continuing to send your and my tax dollars to Israel to pay for the new settlements.

©2012 Keith Berner

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